Atarashii Gakko bends boundaries past J-pop, anime, hip-hop

Genre-bending Japanese band Atarashii Gakko — with members Mizyu (left), Rin, Kanon and Suzuka — are set to perform Aug. 17 at the Great American New music Hall in San Francisco. Picture: Crunchyroll

A person of the most important highlights of the recent Crunchyroll Expo anime pageant in San Jose wasn’t on paper or celluloid. It was Atarashii Gakko, a unique and eclectic Japanese quartet. For an hour, the foursome of Suzuka, Mizyu, Kanon and Rin executed a wildly entertaining exhibit composed of breakneck choreography set to its rambunctious combine of hip-hop, punk, cabaret jazz and retro Japanese pop.

Speaking by way of translator on a movie connect with, AG member Mizyu claimed the group’s audio references Showa-era kayōkyoku pop but maintains it is genre-fluid. “We’re also rock and hip-hop,” Mizyu explained. “Those types of audio get individuals pumped up. It’s in our blood.”

The team are excellent youth ambassadors of contemporary Japan. Around translated as “new university leaders,” Atarashii Gakko formed in 2015, its associates hailing from Tokyo, Saitama, Osaka and Gunma. Their costumes reference the country’s rigid conformity, but their eruptive new music, unique dance moves and particular person personalities are nearly anything but. They’ve recorded useful cultural movies (“Seishun Academy”) explaining Japanese university lifetime, getting the subway, New Year’s traditions, temples and bento boxes in their personal inimitable fashion.

Their hyperkinetic films caught the eye and ear of 88increasing, the arbiters of all points Asian and awesome. Collectively, they released catchy singles like “Nainainai” and “Woo! Go!” which was featured in a Japanese Nike advertisement. A modern YouTube video clip tidily sums up what gets repeat performs on the AG karaoke equipment: TLC’s “No Scrubs,” Momoe Yamaguchi’s late 1970s strike “Playback Component 2,” Mariya Takeuchi’s enduring Town Pop smash “Plastic Appreciate,” Kiss’ “I Was Produced For Loving You,” and an EDM remix of their most current one, “Pineapple Kryptonite.” Every single member attire up in the corresponding era’s finery to belt out their song.

“Our audio doesn’t fit into a genre, it will become ‘AG Stylem,’ ” explained Suzuka. “We like anything and feed every thing into our new music. The 4 of us each select what we like and develop our possess type.”

When questioned about influences, band associates pointed to Beastie Boys, a group that also channeled numerous influences into a swirling, head-bobbing/banging stew. In concert, AG operates a related onstage weave that Beastie Boys utilised to. AG has covered “Intergalactic” and just lately collaborated with Beastie Boys keyboardist Cash Mark on “Free Your Mind” and “Pineapple Kryptonite.”

“Working with Dollars Mark in L.A. manifested our inventive eyesight completely,” Suzuka mentioned. “We want to carry that vision again to Japan and perform it dwell, so that the audience in Japan can see it. It doesn’t quite in shape in J-pop or everything that they’ve seen.”

Claimed Mizyu: “And that’s very good for the reason that it’s possible this is the starting of a new genre, opening up the Japanese audience to a little something new, a little something bigger. That is what we’re hoping will happen.”

Atarashii Gakko executed at San Jose’s Crunchyroll Expo on Friday, Aug. 5. Picture: Crunchyroll

Atarashii Gakko made its Northern California debut at an anime festival, which, supplied their tailor-made costumes, felt copacetic (“We search like we leaped out of an anime,” stated Suzuka). But after they entered the phase — Suzuka and Mizyu on the shoulders of Kanon and Rin, no considerably less — it was unlike just about anything followers had viewed on the modest monitor. For the following hour, minds have been blown as the quartet breathlessly moved like an 8-legged groove machine. A packed crowd of Japanophiles cheered them on. Anime festival conquered, it’s on to the following episode.

“We want to do every thing that we can until eventually all of our vitality is depleted,” Suzuka explained. “We want to go further than what we imagine is feasible.”

Atarashii Gakko: 8 p.m. Wednesday, Aug. 17. $20-$25. Good American Songs Hall, 859 O’Farrell St, S.F.