Let’s start with Japan’s Melt-Banana, who are coming back to the States for a tour as they’ve done many times before. Their new album is called Fetch, and it’s yet another fresh and unique expression from this band. It’s very recognizable as Melt-Banana, because of the vocal and guitar styles, and also how they write. Yes, the swirling bass, the piles of grating or soothing guitar effects (depending), the impossible-to-follow vocals that roll up and down, right and left. But the album sounds more epic than their previous releases, more emotional. It also features field recordings the band captured in their home country. At the same time, some parts are reminiscent of past works, like the last two studio albums, Cell-Scape and Bambi’s Dilemma. The album’s sleeve artwork is pretty fucking awesome too.
Melt-Banana is an acquired taste, perhaps. The band has a style all its own and one that’s specific. A person has to be weird to come up with music like this, and “alternative” doesn’t begin to cover it. Melt-Banana can be really fast, and groovy, and also very catchy, as the band is on this album. The FAQ of the band’s website says, “Some people say their music is like roller coaster in an amusement park.” That makes sense. Noise rock? Maybe. Punk? Definitely.
Here’s a video for the second song on the album, posted at SPIN.com.
For their live shows, they’ve paired themselves down to a two-piece, vocals and guitar (and it’s a shame the killer bass player Rika Hamamoto isn’t rocking with them anymore), but they’ve retained the signatures of their sound, and they will use machines to provide the percussion. Melt-Banana have been even more awesome live than they are on album, so D.U. can’t wait to see and hear how they are now. Dates are below.
Joining them on the tour is the new band Brain Tentacles, brought to you by Dave Witte from Municipal Waste, etc., on drums and Bruce Lamont from Yakuza on sax. This also sounds very interesting.
Get Melt-Banana’s Fetch from Amazon.
10-16 Vancouver, BC at The Biltmore Cabaret (CANADA)
10-17 Seattle, WA at Chop Suey (USA)
10-18 Portland, OR at Dante’s (USA)
10-19 Boise, ID at Nuerolux (USA)
10-20 Salt Lake City, UT at Urban Lounge (USA)
10-21 Denver, CO at The Larimer Lounge (USA)
10-23 Minneapolis, MN at Triple Rock Social Club (USA)
10-24 Milwaukee, WI at The Cactus Club (USA)
10-25 Grand Rapids, MI at The Pyramid Scheme (USA)
10-26 Cleveland, OH at Grog Shop (USA)
10-27 Chicago, IL at Double Door (USA)
10-28, Pontiac, MI at The Crofoot Ballroom (USA)
10-29 Toronto, ON at Lee’s Palace (CANADA)
10-30 Buffalo, NY at The Tralf (USA)
10-31 Philadelphia, PA at Union Transfer (USA)
11-01 Brooklyn, NY at Saint Vitus (USA)
11-02 Providence, RI at AS220 (USA)
11-03 Boston, MA at The Sinclair (USA)
11-04 Washington, D.C. at Black Cat – Backstage (USA)
11-05 Chapel Hill, NC at Local 506 (USA)
11-06 Atlanta, GA at 529 (USA)
11-08 Dallas, TX at Club Dada (USA)
11-09 Austin, TX at Fun Fun Fun Festival (USA)
11-11 Albuquerque, NM at Launchpad (USA)
11-12 Phoenix,AZ at Last Exit (USA)
11-13 Los Angeles, CA at The Troubadour (USA)
11-14 San Deigo, CA at The Casbah (USA)
11-15 Pomona, CA at The Glasshouse (USA)
11-16 Oakland, CA at The Oakland Metro Operahouse (USA)