I would like to give credit where credit is due. Videos are from YouTube and other sources such as NicoNico while Oricon rankings and other information are translated from the Japanese Wikipedia unless noted.

Saturday, April 1, 2017

Ryusenkei -- Time Machine Love

Not sure whether the cool and groovy band Ryusenkei(流線形)was inspired by flying police boxes or speeding DeLoreans, but the guys came together to create another cool and groovy tune under the title of "Time Machine Love" as a track for their 2nd album "Tokyo Sniper" in 2006. I'm always going to remember the album for the cover image of that jogger taking a break on the road there.

And they got some able assistance from singer Hitomitoi(一十三十一)to provide this nice driving song for the highways and byways criss-crossing Tokyo. Good ol' kaz-shin on his Japanese-language blog of Japanese music "Music Avenue" noted that "Time Machine Love" which starts off "Tokyo Sniper" is reminiscent of some of Minako Yoshida's(吉田美奈子)early material when she embraced R&B in the early 70s. Certainly, Hitomitoi's high-tone vocals can vouch for that. Plus I gotta mention that I enjoy some of that disco bass as well.

Yoshida was one of the early pioneers for New Music and City Pop in the 1970s and 1980s, and so whenever I hear some of these recent urban contemporary popsters such as Ryusenkei and Hitomitoi, I get reminded of a small debate that I've heard sometimes about whether City Pop should only be used to describe that metropolitan music that flourished in the late 70s and early 80s. Perhaps what the recent singers are creating and performing now should be considered examples of J-R&B or J-AOR or an extension of the soul-tinged pop that Misia and bird were doing starting from the early 2000s.

Well, I'm biased here since City Pop is my favourite genre within Japanese pop music but I still wouldn't mind it if that very genre name were still used for tunes right up into this decade. However, I'm sure the artists themselves will have their own strong opinions about how they would like to be classified or whether they even want to be classified at all. In any case, I still like "Time Machine Love" as a city song and would be willing to purchase "Tokyo Sniper".

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