CMU Approved


By | Published on Tuesday 4 November 2014

Oh, what the hell, let’s have a look at another act who played last month’s Tokyo International Music Market, shall we? Yes, we will. Let’s not even pretend you have any say in it. So far we’ve covered artists who played the Wednesday and Thursday showcases at the annual event, but nothing from the Tuesday.

That first night was the J-pop Day and, to be honest, it was all a pretty hard sell for a Western audience. Headliners perhaps most of all. Or perhaps least. It’s hard to say. I really like them.

Despite what you might think, Babymetal are not the only Japanese pop act occupying the more extreme end of the genre. But what Dempagumi do is far less easy to describe in one compound word. It’s pop, yes. But played at hardcore punk speeds, with synths and vocals so loud that the sensory overload they bring almost makes you nauseous. There are so many ideas bursting out of each of their songs, they’re almost unfathomable at first listen.

But how to hook you after that off-putting description? Well, thankfully they’ve done the work for me, with their phenomenal cover of ‘Sabotage’ by Beastie Boys. At first you think it’s going to be a fairly faithful, girlband-style cover of the song, which is fine, but then it veers off in all kinds of directions. The version you can hear below is not even the whole track and it’ll leave you wondering what just happened, but first ease yourself in with original song ‘Den Den Passion’.

Den Den Passion