House of the rising post-rock

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Over the last Few years Japan has released some of the finest Post-rock/ math-rock to be heard. Im going to try and just give a brief introduction into some of my favorite Japaneses bands

But first just to clear up a few things about post rock and math rock
The term post-rock was coined by Simon Reynolds in issue 123 of The Wire (May 1994) to describe a sort of music "using rock instrumentation for non-rock purposes, using guitars as facilitators of timbres and textures rather than riffs and powerchords."
Originally used to describe the music of such bands as Stereolab, Disco Inferno, Seefeel, Bark Psychosis and Pram, it spread out to be frequently used for all sorts of jazz- and Krautrock-influenced, instrumental, electronica-added music made after 1994. Bands from the early 1990s such as Slint, or earlier, such as Talk Talk were influential on this genre. As with many musical genres, the term is arguably inadequate: it is used for the music of Tortoise as well as that of Mogwai, two bands who have very little in common besides the fact that their music is largely instrumental.
Closely related to post-rock is the genre known as Math rock, characterized by more percussive timbres, and more dissonant harmonic gestures.

LITE is a more math rock oriented instrumental music. Formed in 2003 in Tokyo.LITE played many gigs around Tokyo and self-released two demo CDs.
They have released one mini-album, "LITE", and one full-length ("Filmlets") through Transduction in the UK and Cargo in Europe.They toured the UK and Ireland in 2006, and have received critical acclaim in Japan. In July 2007, they played at Fuji Rock Festival in Japan and followed that with another UK & Ireland tour in September, co-inciding with a split release with Funanori (Kaori Tsuchida from The Go! Team and Mike Watt from the Minutemen). Titled "A Tiny Twofer", the split CD features three songs each
MP3>LITE - I miss seeing all

LITE "Human Gift"

Mono are a post-rock group from Tokyo, Japan. The songs, all of which are instrumental, are usually focused on layered guitar melodies. Strings and pianos are also prominently featured in some songs. Mono are known for their powerful live shows and their complex guitar work. Their first EP, titled "Hey, you" appeared in September, 2000. So far, they have released four full albums: "Under The Pipal Tree", "One Step More And You Die", "Walking cloud and deep red sky, Flag fluttered and the sun shined" and "You Are There". They also have several other records, including a remix album, a collaborative split record with Pelican, an album collaborating with World's end girlfriend and another EP, titled "Memorie dal Futuro".

MP3> Mono - are you there

Mono - Moonlight

Miaou is probably the most delicate and fragile side of the Japanese post-rock scene.They reach a very deep emotional level without the need of screaming or exploding in noise.Miaou were formed in 1999 by Tatsuki Hamasaki and sisters Mayumi and Hiromi Hasegawa.
Their 2005 release, 'Make These Things Alright' saw Miaou develop their sound with a wider range of instruments, and truly mark themselves with a unique style in Japan

MP3>Miaou -boom 0

miaou - tiger note

They’re less math than Lite.Sometimes technical sometimes simple and sweet.Toe is comprised of Kashikura Takashi on drums, Mino Takaaki on guitar, Yamane Satoshi on bass guitar, and Yamazaki Hirokazu on guitar. Toe has formally played with this line-up since the band’s inception in 2000. The vast majority of the music is instrumental and features the swift and acute drumming of Takashi. The band is also known for its melodic, clean guitar settings. Additionally, the compositions have repetition from typical rock motifs, but use very subtle changes in beat and rhythm to form a unique sound. The band has changed their sound over their musical tenure by incorporating acoustic guitars, rhodes piano, and vibraphones in their most recent releases

MP3>Toe -Mukougishi Ga Shiru Yume

Toe - Everything Means Nothing

Since their formation in 1992, Envy has become a dominant band in the independent hardcore and screamo scene in Japan. Their music has evolved over the years to incorporate hardcore, screamo, and most recently, the epic tendencies of post-rock. Envy is characterized by their ability to master screamo's loud-soft dynamic to evoke both crushing brutality and gentle beauty, often within the same song.
The band has become increasingly popular among the post rock scene in the last few years for their incorporation of Mogwai-esque sound and composition dynamics into more traditional screamo songs. This new influence can be most easily identified on their last three releases, "All The Footprints You've Ever Left And The Fear Expecting Ahead" released by Dim Mak,"A Dead Sinking Story" released on Level Plane and "Insomniac Doze" released on Temporary Residence Limited

MP3> ENVY -Scene

Envy - A Warm Room

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