Secret Songs Shares Mix Featuring New Numbers From Qrion, Cuushe

Ryan Hemsworth has done great work giving attention…like, big publication space…to under-the-radar Japanese artists, whether he’s collaborating with them (Qrion, Tomggg) or just shouting them out (Seiho, Taquwami). His Secret Songs label just released a mix featuring a bunch of great music, all worth checking out…Kero Kero Bonito!…but for now we’ll focus on two tracks from Japanese creators. The aforementioned Qrion contributes “Only,” a shuffler featuring ample handclaps, pitched vocal samples and some twinkly piano for good measure. Listen above.

The other Japanese contributor is Cuushe with “Do You Feel Me.” Whereas Qrion delivers a solid song in sonic territory you’d expect from her, Cuushe mixes it up a bit – her singing sounds as dream-pop worthy as usual, but now she’s unfurling her words over a hiccup-y beat, one accented by streaks of her saying “yeah!” Listen below.

Leather (Formerly DYGL) Change Name Back To DYGL, Release New Song “Let’s Get Into Your Car”

The band formerly known as DYGL can now be known as the band formerly known as Leather – this Tokyo indie-pop unit has shifted back to their original name (pronounced “day glow”) and to celebrate they’ve released a lovely new number, “Let’s Get Into Your Car.” It’s a driving (heh) number full of chuggin’ guitars and a great hook, one that makes the titular act far more dramatic than it sounds. Listen above.

New Dustin Wong And Takako Minekawa: “Pastel Ice Date”

Dustin Wong and Takako Minekawa’s latest album, Savage Imagination, officially came out in America yesterday. It’s a very good listen, and here’s another example of it via the new video for the bouncy, building song “Pastel Ice Date.” It’s not one of the album’s beefier moments – though the guitar that rips through late in the track definitely adds some force to the proceedings – but it’s an absorbing number built on the pair’s wordless cooing. Listen above.

New Figure: Exit Error

The music Nagoya artist Figure makes has always been claustrophobic – the albums and songs he’s trickled onto the Internet over the last few years have been guitar-centered numbers where the vocals get muffled out enough as if to sound like they are being sung from the next room over…through a concrete wall. New collection Exit Error plunges listeners right back into that sonic cloyster – opener “City Walking” glides ahead on the same sort of suffocating guitars, the singing tucked in deep. It isn’t a sad song exactly – the melody is rather sunny – but the whole thing is done up in gray. “The Month You Don’t Know,” though, has a sad bend – it’s a more minor song, and one where the vocals are completely paved over, the whole thing building up to a shoegaze finale that lets some hope in. Listen to the whole thing above.

New Jesse Ruins: “L For App”

It has been a while since shadowy outfit – and CUZ ME PAIN group – Jesse Ruins have shared a new song…but they have a lot to reveal today. The group will release their second album Heartless in November (well, in Japan…an international release follows the next month), and here’s the first taste of it. Jesse Ruins’ music has always struck a fine balance between dreamy wonder and creeping unease – see “Dream Analysis” and remember those deeper-toned backup vocals backing the sweeter ones up front – but “L For App” leans more towards creating a creepy atmosphere. It’s a sparse number featuring clattering percussion and chant-like voices saying “just feel…sick sick sick” (or, depending on how you want to hear this, “6 6 6″). The voices eventually stutter, and electronic pulses enter it, adding to the sweltering feel. It builds up to something, but even the climax here is claustrophobic. Listen above.