Tuesday, September 20, 2005

New Book: jrock, ink.

Jrock is short for Japanese rock: edgy, all about talent, and filled with dazzling musicality

jrock, ink.: a concise report on 40 of the biggest rock acts in japan

by Josephine Yun

The growth of anime, new radio stations, and downloadable music has spurred overseas fan interest in Japanese music. As Puffy AmiYumi star in their own Cartoon Network show and as the 5,6,7,8's song "Woo Hoo" sneaks up in TV commercials, some much harder rockers from Japan are playing concerts in American cities, showing up at packed anime conventions, releasing their albums Stateside, contributing to film and TV soundtracks, and yet still keeping their music unique rather than comply with overseas tastes.

jrock, ink.: a concise report on 40 of the biggest rock acts in japan, published by Stone Bridge Press, is an executive report on the energized Japanese rock scene today. It introduces some of the hottest names in jrock history. Read about Dir en grey, Gackt, L’Arc~en~Ciel, the pillows, Psycho le Cému, and of course Shonen Knife, who toured with Nirvana in 1993 and are still cutting edge. These rock acts and 34 others each have backgrounds, musical pedigrees, critiques, and up-to-date discographies, all in a stunning full-color package featuring original art. The book easily reads from right to left, similar to a manga graphic novel.

Author Josephine Yun grew up watching Japanese historical dramas and listening to rock music. She has covered classical music and jpop for City Paper, Baltimore's alternative weekly, and is an editor for jrockonline.com. Yun wrote the official English biography for the band X Japan, and now presents panels at large anime conventions. Artist Yana Moskaluk is a leading illustrator at Art.Lebedev Studio, Russia's largest design company, and designer Yelena Zhavoronkova is a graphic artist and very good friend of the author.

jrock, ink.: a concise report on 40 of the biggest rock acts in japan is written by Josephine Yun. It is 125 pp., paper, with 42 color illustrations. It retails for US$18.95, ISBN 1-880656-95-7

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