Our last party for the March-April 2022 issue was so good, we decided to do another one with our partner MTM (More Than Music). Like last time, they brought the music and Tokyo Weekender brought the ‘more.’
On June 3, the TW team and our collaborators and readers gathered in Haremame (also known as Mame Romantic) in Daikanyama to chat, grab a copy of our latest issue with Kiko Mizuhara on the cover and dance to the tunes of neo-traditional Japan sounds of Moku (stylized as MOKU), Tow (stylized as TOW) and The Shamisenists. DJ Fuzi73, meanwhile, brought everything together in between sets.
The original cocktails at the venue had the same spirit of culture fusion, so we were sipping on some green tea-infused gin and tonic, alongside regular favorites like Baird Beer. Haremame also had homemade curry for hungry souls and an overall warm and welcoming atmosphere. The little tatami mat sitting corner upped the traditional Japanese vibe too.
A Neo-Traditional Music Night to Remember
Moku opened the night, enchanting the crowd with their dreamy and psychedelic ambient music with elements of traditional Japanese sounds. The soft and hypnotic singing paired with the beat lulls you into a dance.
Tow took the stage next, with a dramatic presence and a theatrical performance. The kimono-wearing acoustic duo started quietly with a few guitar plucks by guitarist Kai, before singer and accordion player Nue burst in with her powerful voice. Tow is a band that truly shines in live performances. In TW’s interview with them, they told us that they always adjust their performances to match the energy of the audience.
Finally, The Shamisenists came out. They make the humble three-stringed traditional Japanese instrument the main star with their “shamisen rock” and “shamisen metal,” joined by a drummer and a keyboard player. More importantly, they cast a music spell over the audience and have everyone jumping as soon as they play their first song. A powerful sound one doesn’t hear every day, The Shamisenists were our favorite discovery of the night. It seems everyone will be talking about “shamisen rock” for a while.
Here are more photos from the event:
Photos by Wahei Nakamura, courtesy of More Than Music