OSAKA POPSTAR super american punk rock group was formed across generational lines and the differences between scenes and scenes. This debut album ' Osaka Popstar and the American Legends of Punk' is released via Misfits Records in May 2006 in the US. Like the title of this album, all the members have been making american legends of punk r
k since 70'. Now, I would like to introduce the members.
John Cafiero (vocal)
His regular occupation is an audio-visual producer/director. In 1997 He was involved in Japanese Music TV shows on MTV Japan and Space Shower. While he was recording this album he got a request from Marky Ramone to produce and direct DVD ' Ramones Raw' (released 2006). He also produced and directed the music videos 'american psycho' and 'dig up her bones' for misfits. He and Jerry Only have know each other for a long time. He is the leader of Osaka Popstar.
Marky Ramone (drums)
He was the core drummer of Ramones from 1978-1996 though he was out of the band for about 4 years. His perfect eight beat is godlike. Before He joined Ramones he had been in one of the most well-known punk bands in New York Richard Hell and the VOIDODS. At that time, he named himself Mark Bell. After the break up of Ramones He released CDs with Intruderes and speedkings. He is, was, and will always be energetic.
Jerry Only (bass)
He represents New Jersey based punk band The Misfits. Since they released their debut album in 1977, no matter how many members leave and join he has been sticking to The Misfits. Since their regrouping in 1995, he lives up to his name as the leader of The Misfits. Jerry invented the infamous hair style, the Devilock.
Dez Cadena (guitar)
From 1980 to1983 he was in the Black Flag which is the most influential punk/hard core Band in LA. He was the third vocalist before Henry Lollins' joining the band. ( You can listen to his singing in the album, ''The First Four Years'') However, in their first album ''Damaged'' he dedicated himself to it as a rhythm guitarist. After leaving the Black Flag he performed in DC3.
Ivan Julian (guitar)
He used to be a member of Richard Hell & VOIDOIDS with Marky. Robert Quine who played in Lou Reed is best remembered as a guitarist of the VOIDOIDS but, Ivan's guitar play is also ill. He joined '' Sandinista!'' of CLASH as a guest guitarist.
It may be more accurate to say '' John=Osaka Popstar. However, it is simply not a '' improvised all-star band''. As a matter of fact Marky, Jerry, and Dez have been working together under the name of The Misfits since 2001. You can hear their play in the cover CD '' Project 1950'' which Jerry played a role as lead vocalist. Marky seems like he left The Misfits in 2005 but It is natural that these three play in total synch. Actually, John also joined as vocalist and producer in the album. It could be the very prototype of the album of Osaka Popstar.
Now, let me explain about the songs in this album because there are a lot of covers. Their original songs are wonderful enough but they have excellent taste in choosing cover songs.
1, WIcked World
California born '' The monster song writer'' Daniel Johnston's song. You may be surprised by this connection but, John and Daniel are friends. Daniel has many Japanese enthusiasm fans as an underground singer. In 2003 he jam-packed his live performance at SHIBUYA Quatro. The original version is in the album '' Songs of Pain'' released in 1980.
2, Astro Boy
The theme song of Osamu Tezuka's '' Astro Boy''. " Astro Boy" was published in 50s' and showed up on TV in 60s'. It sounds a lot different from the original version.
3, Sailor Moon
The theme song of animation '' Sailor Moon'' titled '' The legend of the moon light''.
4, Man of Constant Sorrow
It is known as the theme song of the movie '' Oh Brother, Where Art Thou?''. It is played in bluegrass style. Bob Dylan also covered this song. Daniel Johnston joined as vocalist for this album.
KIDS OF WIDNEY HIGH, which is the project made by disabled children and their teachers released an album '' Special Music from Special Kids'' in 1989. ''Insects'' is one of the songs on it.
6, I Live off You
It is from X-RAY SPEX's album '' Germ Free Adolescents ''. X-RAY SPEX is the band that represents old school London punk rock. Poly Starling is the vocalist of the band.
7, Xmas Intro
8. Christmas That Almost Wasn't
It is a song from the movie Rossano Bratty played a role as the main character and producer. It is also the title of the movie.
9, Love Comes in Spurts
10, Black Generation
Both 9 and 10 are from Richard Hell & the VOIDOIDS's first album '' Blank Generation ''. Former members Marky and Ivan's performing here is such a precious thing for fans of VOIDOIDS.
12, Where's The Cap'n?
13, Shaolin Monkeys
These three are the leader John's works. Marky and Ivan play on 11 with John on rythm guitar. Marky, Ivan, Jerry, and Dez all the members play here on 12. Marky, Jerry, and Dez play on 13.
John, who is attracted to Japanese animations and punk rock mixed both and got together with his musician friends. That is Osaka Popstar. His virtue called all the punk rock moguls. He loves especially Ramones.
Artworks and lyrics all taken together, he made cross-fertilization between American comics and Rock 'n Roll and renewed the american punk rock. Also Misfits and Black Flag were not completed without comic influence.
John shows you the traditional american punk rock in his own way through Osaka Popstar. Their booklet's artwork looks like it's the american version of Japanese anime/comic. And of course, the PV is perfect. You can watch the PV of '' Wicked world '' and " Insects " on your computer with this album. Mari-chan from Japan worked on the former and Joel Veitch did the latter.
The name sounds a little nonsense in a way but, it totally match the concept of the band. They are serious. They toured with Misfits, I cannot wait to see their live in Japan.