JRock: 4 Songs we listened to in August

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August was a long month and it saw a lot of really JRock great music come out of Japan. Between some livestreamed gigs (check out our coverage of Scandal’s Kiss from the Darkness stream here) and catching up on some releases that slipped under my radar during lockdown, I’ve been spoiled for choice on the JRock side of things.

So what caught my eye during August? What were my “Must Catch” songs and videos that I’ve been dying to share with you? Glad you asked, cause I have been sitting on some of these for far too long. And if you want to catch even more JRock music, check out the Rice Digital Spotify playlist, curated to bring the best in the genre to you each month!

August JRock Playlist

My First Story – Underground

My First Story are a band coming out of Tokyo who have been making waves since they came on the JRock scene in 2012. With a sound that is somehow both polished and with a rough, rock edge, there isn’t much of a surprise as to why they have, in a relatively short amount of time, found so much success. They have hit numerous festivals over the years and supported bands like All Time Low and Fall Out Boy on the Japanese leg of their tours.

Underground is a great song, with a killer opening that showcases their fantastic rhythm section and Hiro’s Too Cool for School vocals.

SiM – Baseball Bat

A little metal is good for the soul and SiM is one of the bigger alternative metal bands in Japan. Their sound immediately brings back the best bits of Korn from when I was a punk kid with a bad attitude. This song is not just a really good thrashing song with a suitably threatening aura, its video is also crammed full off cameos from some of the biggest JRock acts in the business, including The Oral Cigarettes, One OK Rock, and Scandal.

OTMGirls – Viral Star

Aggretsuko season three hit Netflix at the end of August and, as usual, the music was a standout among the episodes. Idol music isn’t usually my bag, but this song was just so catchy and leads into the later episodes where the OTMGirls start to mirror the birth of Baby Metal. Viral Star has been playing almost constantly since the episodes hit on Thursday of last week and has been the cause of much dancing and rejoicing, so its impossible not include it in this list.

If nothing else, this should be your reminder to go watch season three of Aggretsuko because it is one of my favourite animes getting made these days.

You Say Run and Might+u – Anime Gives Back

A few months ago, a collection of anime and music superstars came together to produce a fantastic rendition of The Real Folk Blues from Cowboy Bebop. Now the group are back with some incredible musicians and a huge chunk of the English voice actors from My Hero Academia to give us an updated You Say Run and Might+u to raise money for UNICEF. With the voice actors for Uravity, Miruko, and All Might giving some really fun performances in this charity single as well as some sweeping orchestral arrangements, this is a really positive way for folks to give back simply by listening to the song on YouTube or Spotify.

Still want more JRock to plug into your earholes? Don’t forget to check out our Spotify playlist, which will include these songs and much more to get you through your day. And drop your music recommendations the #music channel on the Rice Digital Discord server!

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