On a recent Sunday night, nine Japanese musicians, part of which was the Kariyushi Band, took the stage to perform at the Key Club. When the band took the stage the crowd went wild – perhaps due to one of the band members coming onstage in a loincloth and carrying a conch shell, but likely due to the fans who were anxiously awaiting their performance.
Musically, the Kariyushi band is classified as rock, but to me the band’s soothing melodies and ethereal vocals felt like a pop-new age hybrid. The music transported me to another time and place, but this is also coming from the only white girl in the room. Though the beats and rhythms are not what I would consider danceable, the crowd began to flail their arms almost as if they were readying for liftoff, grooving and swaying to the music.
In fact, the crowd was so enraptured with the band that it was like watching the Beatles’ Second Coming. This seemed odd since the Kariyushi band members’ presence and energy on stage was both tranquil and serene.
Judging from the Kariyushi Band’s performance and their fans’ overwhelming response, the Japanese music scene here in the States is definitely on the rise. But only time will tell if it will have staying power in a music industry known for its every-changing trends.