Last year, while playing through the brilliantly old school, Scott Pilgrim vs. The World: The Game, I found myself bowled over by the quality of the accompanying soundtrack. Both retro and contemporary and always outrageously catchy, I promised myself that I would look up the artist the moment I finished the game……that was over a year ago. Thanks to my extremely unreliable memory, I completely forgot all about it until just last week when I found myself compiling a list of my 10 favourite videogame songs for a recent blog post. That was the moment I found out about Anamanaguchi and subsequently fell in love with a band for the first time since I was a teenager (that was a long bloody time ago).
Although intrinsically linked to videogames thanks to their work on the aforementioned Scott Pilgrim soundtrack and their use of a customized NES and Gameboy to create the synthesized bit chip music that forms the core of their unique sound, Anamanaguchi deliver a musical experience that can be enjoyed by just about anyone…..well, anyone who likes the sound of happiness anyway. Accompanying the synthesized backing track with traditional instruments, Anamanaguchi is more akin to an experimental Weezer than an 8 bit videogame tribute band, but, you know, without all the whiny lyrics (they don’t actually employ lyrics on their tracks at all).
While both of their core albums, namely Dawn Metropolis and Power Supply deliver an array of catchy tracks for newcomers to sink their teeth into, this is a band that truly comes to life when playing live on stage. Although I am yet to see them live myself, you only need to take a look at the vast selection of YouTube videos to get an idea of the kind of infectious energy that Anamanaguchi deliver at their live shows.
Of all the videos I have checked out, this 35 minute live set at the Blip Festival in Tokyo just last year really gives you an idea of what this band is all about. Oh, and if you find yourself having a particularly rough day, just skip to Space Wax America at (10:30) – if this song doesn’t make you feel better about life, I don’t know what will.
Ok, that’s the end of my unashamed advertisement for my new favourite band…….please, do check out the below.