|By Matt Gburek||Tuesday, 15 Sep 2009|
“Good-Evil; The Soundtrack” is a weekly feature that showcases an editor’s song pick complete with a small write-up and a YouTube video or streaming version of the song. This week’s selection by Matt Gburek is Zazen Boys – “Kuroi Shitagi”.
The Zazen Boys were a name I’ve often heard dropped in various music circles throughout Japan as having a major influence on indie rock within the country. Rather than a great deal of indie bands from Japan who just want to be Sonic Youth, Zazen Boys have a unique approach to their music which could be called “math rock” but incorporates elements of funk, jazz, and Buddhist chanting. Cliché though it may be, it’s the truth: theirs is a truly unique, definitively Japanese sound that ultimately manages to defy classification.
Perhaps the song “Kuroi Shitagi” (lit: “Black Panties”) would be an excellent summation of what they do best. Lyrically, it’s about exactly what the title would lead you to believe, but the hypnotic, noisy guitar riffs and white-hot screaming vocals on the chorus that wavers in and out of loud and soft and back to loud again make this one a gem that is both energetic, silly, and yet still has substance despite it’s obviously playful theme. It’s the kind of thing I just want to put on repeat while thrashing about my room like a sped kid.
The (I’m guessing?) official video for the song is located below, though I’d recommend those of you who are on somebody’s dime right now wait until you get home to watch it, if you know what I mean.
Zazen Boys – Kuroi Shitagi (NSFW)