Monday, February 18, 2013

Japanese reggae alert: Audio Active's "Happy Shopper" on eBay!

Arguably my favourite song about consumerism - right up there with The Clash's "Lost in the Supermarket" - is Japanese dub reggae/ On-U Sound band Audio Active's "Happy Shopper," off their album Happy Happer. The 12" is on eBay right now, starting at a very low price; it's a deeply cool song, with some of the best-written English language lyrics to come out of Japan, but it's perhaps not so well known in North America for it to end up costing much. Official video for the song here - check it out! I had the privilege of seeing Audio Active live in Yoyogi Park some years ago, though I don't remember much of it. Two members of Audio Active were the seed for Dry & Heavy, an even more reggae-oriented band, whom I caught at the Fuji Rock Festival, at the gig when Heavy, the bassist, shocked the audience by announcing his departure. (It came at the end of their set, which had been terrific - everyone was pumped and joyous, then he said something into the mike and there was this huge GASP from the crowd; I turned to a friendly Japanese hipster who had been kinda surprised to see a fat white guy happily dancing in the dust to a Japanese band, and had been chatting with me, and asked him to translate the announcement, which surprised me as much as anyone).

Those Japanese can sure do reggae - check out this extended mix of Dry & Heavy's "Mr. Blueflame," with the terrific Likkle Mai on vocals...!

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