MTM Presents: Rocking Shimokitazawa Three


This latest issue of the MTM rock series featured four great bands that thundered with all the fury the rock gods demand, all of them from a different denomination but with the same goal, to blow away their audience.

First up, a quintet of rockers from Tokyo, called Mississippi Khaki Hair clearly inspired by Editors. Kimura Yasuto (lead) channels the legendary voice of Tom Smith and haunted ShimoKitazawaThree with it. Their bombastic sound filled the live house that felt too small for their presence. 

“Moonshadow” (embedded) for example is an awe-inspiring song that evokes the heartbreak and darkness so indicative of the music in the new wave era. Given that English is not the main language for Kimura he does a very good job of crafting lyrics to match the murky music on this perfect track. 
"Seven" is another track I recommend you go check out, spread the love why don't you!

Then “THE DEVILS&LIBIDO” an ironclad three-piece-band of instrumental metal took to the stage. Bassist Taira was sporting a colorful bathrobe matching the shirt striped shirt of guitarist Ayana. As enthralling bass riffs flow out of the speakers, yours truly, a 191 cm tall punk enthousiast is fighting every fiber in his body not to start the mosh pit that the devils are summoning.      

Violence must have been felt by the drumkit, because either possessed by a devil or his libido the drummer smashed the love of Christ out of his skins. 

It is refreshing to see a band where the bass player plays such a prominent role as in THE DEVILS&LIBIDO and a band that emanates the energy of a small nuclear plant deserves to see that reflected in the audience before them. 

Thirdly, Paprikan revived grunge culture for us, taking us throughout the nineties alternating between Nirvana and Pearl Jam. Heavy guitars and piercing vocals dominated this set. I personally regained faith in the genre reliving my own youth in the span of 40 minutes.

And I found the answer to the age-old question: “What happens when you are listening to grunge in Japanese ?” The answer is of course a week of head banging induced neck pain and a hangover. 


Sunsirlovecalls, a whole mouthful, brings us in the early 2000's punk rock vibe. As a soundcheck they brought "Killing in the name of” by “Rage against the machine”, a band they most certainly adore, as they confessed later on. This, of course, released endorphins in everyone old enough to remember this instant classic. I kept tripping on this nostalgia, happiness hormone throughout the next hour since their sound was comparable to the heroes of my teens, limp bizkit, blink182, rage against the machine, I won't go on, even though I could.

Sunsirlovecalls is clearly born in an orgy doused in chaos, anarchy and raw talent. These guys belong in Tony Hawk pro skater 2, even though that game is dead and buried, this band carries on the free spirit of skate punk, punk rock and all the unburdened goodness of the turn of the millennium.

ShimokitazawaThree serves well as a rock dungeon. It's got everything you need, a bar that serves pints of "Heartland" (just a fan) for a reasonable price, A stage with a very good sound system and a lovely manager to keep it all running smoothly. This particular night Three was a time machine, as smoke filled the air we landed in all the decades that offered something on the way of the distortion ridden guitar sound, and through it all this basement that is every man's perfect man cave, felt timeless throughout our journey of rock.

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