3 more great JRock albums from 2022

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Covering JRock for Rice Digital the past few years has meant that I’ve had to keep my ear to the ground for the best new music coming out of Japan. There is just so much great stuff coming out of Japan at the moment that it is hard to keep up. There is just no shortage of fantastic albums to listen to right now, with more on the horizon.

To make sure you don’t miss any of the great JRock on offer at the moment, we’ve got another midyear round-up of the best albums released in the last three months.

Super Champon from Otoboke Beaver 

JRock punk artists Otokobe Beaver

You can sum up Super Champon from Otoboke Beaver with a little bit of math. It is an album that consists of 18 tracks, lasting 21 minutes and 26 seconds total. At less than a minute and a half per track, it has all the frantic energy that makes punk rock such a treat to listen to. The album is filled with tracks like “You’re no hero shut up f*ck you man-whore”, “Leave me alone! No, stay with me!”, and “Do you want to send me a DM”. This is a band that has a lot of pent-up modern-day rage to express, and I respect that.

Listening to this album feels like the closest thing to seeing a great punk band live without diving straight into the mosh pit. Super Champon is as much of a sonic experience as it is anything else. Super Champon skyrocketed Otoboke Beaver to the top of my list of bands I simply have to see live. If their sets are half as good as this album, it will be the experience of a lifetime. The album is available to stream on Spotify or to purchase from Bandcamp.

Planet Folks by Asian Kung-Fu Generation

Anime fans will know Asian Kung-Fu Generation by now, but they are giants in the JRock scene because each of their albums is packed with great tracks. Their latest offering, Planet Folks, is no different. Oddly enough, it features songs that fans of Asian Kung-Fu Generation will have heard before. The first half of the album is primarily re-releases of singles from as long as three years ago, remixed for their new album. Not that any of that is a damnable offense, but the new tracks are so good I wish they had more room to shine.

“You to You” is the lead track and has been a mainstay on my working playlist for a while now. “Be Alright” has a wonderfully intimate yet dramatic feeling to it. The band’s tenth album gives us a lot of familiar stuff on it while showing that they still have plenty of new tricks to give fans. Stream the full album on Spotify.

Break and Cross the Walls II by MAN WITH A MISSION

It would be impossible not to mention this release from MAN WITH A MISSION, so soon after we got the chance to chat with them about it. Break and Cross the Walls II mixes genres with an effortless skill that only our favourite wolf-man hybrids can pull off. There is the touching drama of “More than Words” and “The Victors” as well as one of my all-time favourite tracks from the band in “Perfect Clarity.” This album is packed with great songs from one of the best bands in the JRock scene.

It feels like MAN WITH A MISSION can do no wrong with this album. There are massively different tracks on it and all of them range from good to amazing. You can stream the whole album on Spotify or get a physical release from our friends at JPU Records.

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