Z: Mikabe

[26 February 2007]

By Deanne Sole

Jun Nemoto screams angrily but my Japanese is nowhere near as good as it could be so I can’t tell you what he’s saying. He’s not asking the way to the nearest beer vending machine or trying to catch a train. I can tell you that much. From the way he yells I’m going to guess that he’s telling Society to go fuck itself you pack of fucking fucks. Nemoto is a guest singer with Z, a band that follows in the wake of a now-defunct Japanese punk group called There Is a Light That Never Goes Out, about which I know nothing except that it led to Z. The band includes a blurting saxophonist and someone wildly playing the flute, taking Mikabe into the territory of avant-garde jazz. It’s the music of fits and starts: a grunt, a strum, a scream, a honk, a hoot, an eruption into noise, a retreat into guitar-whine. The artistic fruit of an apparently unwavering feeling of frustration, Mikabe is going to seem either exhilarating or puzzling, depending on your point of view.

Published at: http://www.popmatters.com/pm/review/z-mikabe/