From the sugar rush of Tokyo’s idol subculture to the discordant polyrhythms of its experimental punk and indie scenes, this audiobook by Japan Times music columnist Ian F. Martin offers a witty and tender look at the issues that shape Japanese music today. With insights into the evolution of J-pop as well as its history, infrastructure, and (sub)cultures, Martin deconstructs an industry that operates very differently from counterparts overseas.
Based partly on interviews with influential artists, label owners, and event organizers, Martin’s audiobook combines personal anecdotes with cultural criticism and music history. An accessible and humorous account emerges of why some creative acts manage to overcome institutional pressures without quitting their bands.
Ian Martin’s writing about Japanese music has appeared in The Japan Times, CNN Travel, and The Guardian, among other places. Martin is based in Tokyo, where he also runs Call and Response Records.
As an exclusive bonus for listeners, this audiobook contains over an hour of music from the Japanese underground.
This audiobook was directed by Graeme Mick and produced by Awai Books.