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L.I.N.K.S. for Today

Barcoded Gravestones

I think the obvious response to this is: Japan is crazy. But again, notice that the whole story is that some company is selling the product, rather than consumers actually reaching into their wallets and paying for their loved ones be buried in a keitai-friendly manner. So yes, Japanese companies sometimes come up with crazy products that get them a lot of attention, but I am not sure why we treat these gimmicks so seriously, as if consumers ever demanded such things. Wake me up when QR codes cover the entire Fuji Reien.

If I worked at a Japanese pharmaceutical company, I would send out press releases that we are selling “Strawberry Flavored Birth Control Pills,” and suddenly the English language blog world would explode into rapture upon discovering this latest proof that Japan is insane in a futuristic way.

Escalator Records Interview

If not the first, one of the longest interviews in English with legendary Japanese indie label Escalator Records. Interesting to see the arc of founder Naka: first he hates Japanese music and only listens to foreign indies, then he gets deeply involved with his batch of Japanese indie artists, and now he hates Japanese music and only listens to foreign indies. Everyone hates on my ’90s lust, but I’m telling you, it was an amazing decade for Japanese pop cultural self-confidence.

W. David MARX
March 27, 2008

One Response

  1. panda Says:

    my comment is all on escalator:

    i agree with Naka more or less. or in that, one changes their mind.
    there isn’t a lot of independent groups in japan. i mean. p-vine is considered indie! ymck is on avex!.. plus, i think labels, along with artists, are allowed to change what they like. people seem to hate it though.. it seems like you can’t deviate from your path. if you do, you have to change your name.

    granted, i don’t agree with breaking it down t, region. IE. “nothing in japan is good. everything that is foreign is good.” but i doubt he’s saying that. things will always get lost in translation. no matter how hard you try.

    running a label is fairly emotional, and one becomes quick to say what sucks, and what is good. there’s never an inbetween.. even though there obviously is.