Tokyo’s Ningen OK are a group that demand to be seen live. I lucked my way into seeing them this past weekend, knowing nothing about them, but leaving thinking this duo put on one of the better live sets I’ve seen recently. They play surrounded by what appear to be homemade white pyramids. Guitarist Takurou Yamashita stands in front of a board littered with effects pedals, while Ken-ichi Sakaguchi looms over a drum kit which he soon hammers away at. They play very precise, wordless rock that always seems an inch away from tumbling into chaos, but always manages to hold together. Between songs, Sakaguchi leans towards a Vocoder and creates trippy segues featuring his robo-tized voice. Then they launch off again. It’s captivating stuff.
Their music manages to still sound good away from a live house – “Taion No Yukue” highlights Ningen OK’s precision-centric nature while also introducing elements of chaos (listen to that radio feedback). Listen to that below. It comes off their recently released first album of the same name, which is also probably full of good moments. Still, Ningen OK seem like a live band first, one that you should certainly make time for. Bookmark this page.