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HALF JAPANESE

Half Japanese

Jump Into Love

    ‘Jump Into Love’ is the new album from Half Japanese, true DIY noise-rock royalty, led by the ever-effervescent Jad Fair. It’s a meeting of minds, a coming together from the world’s favourite indie-alt-rock outsiders. Atypically out there and off-kilter, the album wears its heart on its sleeve through a cascade of new, dark and brooding songs from the band who would be king. Loved by Kurt Cobain, Daniel Johnston, Penn Jillette and outsiders everywhere, Half Japanese continue their quest for answers; creating a soundscape for a post-zombie land where bells chime and it’s OK to say “Yes”.

    It’s another adventure; series 20 from an introspective parallel world where the super prolific Jad Fair cogitates on life, love, giants, the possessed and even bigger issues that simply swell the brain. Musing on the writing process, Jad explains “I feel a need to do music and do song writing. It's something I really miss when I'm not doing it. There's a certain amount of tranquillity that's obtained from the fact that you can be working on songs each day. I think you use that certain portion of your brain that is otherwise not used.

    I kind of kind of prefer using it than not using it.” Half Japanese currently includes Jad with John Sluggett, Gilles-Vincent Rieder, Mick Hobbs and Jason Willett, a veritable who’s who of DIY indie culture. ‘Jump Into Love’ was recorded at Tempo House, Baltimore, Russian Recording, Bloomington Indiana, Studio de la Trappe, Donneville France and la Casamurada, Tarragona Spain. The album was mixed by long time Half Japanese sparring partner Jason Willett at his home in Baltimore, Maryland.

    TRACK LISTING

    A1 It's OK
    A2 We Are Giants
    A3 True Love Will Save The Day
    A4 Listen To The Bells Chime
    A5 Jump Into Love
    A6 The Answer Is Yes
    B1 Shining Sun
    B2 This Isn't Funny
    B3 Step Inside
    B4 Here She Comes
    B5 Shining Stars
    B6 Zombie World

    Half Japanese

    The Band That Would Be King (RSD23 EDITION)

      THIS IS A RECORD STORE DAY 2023 EXCLUSIVE, LIMITED TO ONE PER PERSON.

      The seminal album from Half Japanese back on Limited edition Orange vinyl and featuring updated artwork and liner notes from Jad Fair and producer Kramer. This is the Zen of Half Japanese, of prolific songwriter Jad Fair; wide-eyed crooner, humorous raconteur and spontaneous storyteller. A genre-bending romp through the mind of the man, originally released in 1989 in a purple patch for the group, preceded by "Music To Strip By" and "Charmed Life". "Half Japanese were a song machine," attested Pitchfork, while AllMusic saw this album as a collection of "humorous lo-fi rock'n'roll hit singles."

      Half Japanese

      I Guess I'm Living: The Charmed Life Tapes (RSD21 EDITION)

        THIS IS A RECORD STORE DAY 2021 EXCLUSIVE AND WILL BE AVAILABLE INSTORE ON SATURDAY JUNE 12TH ON A FIRST COME FIRST SERVED BASIS, LIMITED TO ONE PER PERSON.

        IF THERE ARE ANY REMAINING COPIES THEY WILL BE MADE AVAILABLE ONLINE AT 6PM ON THE SAME DAY (SATURDAY JUNE 12TH).


        1000 copies pressed on Yellow vinyl & DL card. Fist time on vinyl. All-enveloping superbly alternative third take on 1988's Charmed Life album featuring previously unissued versions and a half dozen previously unreleased songs. Includes brand new liner notes and an interview with Jad and David Fair.

        TRACK LISTING

        Side A. 1 Said And Done (Alternate Version) 2 Evidence (Alternate Version) 3 Vietnam (Alternate Version) 4 Love At First Sight (Alternate Version) 5 Snake Line (Alternate Version) 6 Fun For All 7 Face Rake (Alternate Version) 8 Later In A Magazine (Alternate Version) 9 Red Dress (Alternate Version) 10 Charmed Life (Alternate Version 1).
        Side B. 1 Day And Night With Angie 2 Madonna Nude (Alternate Version) 3 Ashes On The Ground 4 T For Texas 5 I'll Change My Style (Alternate Version) 6 Fortunate (Alternate Version) 7 Please Crawl Out Your Window 8 30 Seconds In Heaven 9 Charmed Life (Alternate Version 2)

        Half Japanese

        Crazy Hearts

          Half Japanese return with another thrilling ride into unknown charters encountering beasts, celebrities, and menaces.

          Purveyors of noise and indie rock for over four decades, Half Japanese have inspired generations of fans from musicians and critics alike.

          Now set to release their 19th studio album ‘Crazy Hearts’ continues with their detuned, outsider pop capturing you in the way that only Jad Fair ever can.

          A philosophical psych-tinged journey, these whip-smart observations are uplifting with life-affirming sentiments (‘Wondrous Wonder’) that we are familiar with. They meld melodic classic rock riffs with heavier bass lines and darker, more twisted tones on ‘My Celebrity’ and ‘A Phantom Menace’.
          Their last excursion saw Uncut praising them for their “unchanged, more ecstatic musings on love and science fiction” that continues to resonate here.

          Half Japanese deliver another well-wrought album with their usual DIY ethos and art punk spirit at its core (‘Undisputed Champions’), all whilst wearing Jad’s heart firmly on its sleeve (‘Crazy Hearts’).
          Recorded across various studios in Spain, France and the US, Jad Fair is accompanied by his longstanding band members John Sluggett, Giles Vincent Rieder, Mick Hobbs and Jason Willett. Mastered by Brian Pyle and mixed by Jason Willett of the band. Album includes artwork from American illustrator and cartoonist, Gary Panter and David Fair.

          TRACK LISTING

          1. The Beast Master
          2. Wondrous Wonder
          3. Dark World
          4. And It Is
          5. My Celebrity
          6. Late At Night
          7. Undisputed Champions
          8. Crazy Hearts
          9. As Best You Can
          10. A Phantom Menace
          11. A Job Well Done
          12. Let It Show

          Half Japanese

          Charmed Life

            THIS IS A RECORD STORE DAY 2019 EXCLUSIVE, LIMITED TO ONE PER PERSON.

            1000 only. Special art edition with extra LP of unheard material on Blue Vinyl. 30 years on Half Japanese’s ‘Charmed Life’ is reissued for Record Store Day. Less love and more monster, Half Japanese sound more realised and fully formed on their sixth studio album. Jad Fair had “become increasingly adept at funnelling his obsessions into songs charming, frank, comical and weird.” Marc Masters, Pitchfork. “As accessible as Half Japanese get” The Quietus // Track List 1 Said And Done 2 Penny In The Fountain 3 Evidence 4 Vietnam 5 Roman Candles 6 Love At First Sight 7 Snake Line 8 Bright Lights, Big City 9 Face Rake 10 Later In A Magazine 11 Red Dress 12 Trouble In The Water 13 Charmed Life 14 Day And Night 15 One Million Kisses 16 Miracles Happen Every Day 17 Terminator 18 I'll Change My Style 19 Fortunate 20 Real Cool Time 21 Poetic License

            Half Japanese

            Invincible

              “Still creating some of the most engaging recordings of their lives, and that's truly something to believe in.” AllMusic… New studio album from Michigan’s greatest outsider combo. An inspiration to Kurt Cobain, post grunge deep thinkers and veterans of the “Can’t Play/Will play” fraternity. Pop music for those outside of pop music. Songs for those still bedevilled by one liners and abrasive melodies. Thematically succinct tales of puppet people, vampires and the walking dead juxtaposed with discerning love songs and eternal affection.

              “Half-Japanese are a respected institution. They've been making noise since the late '70s.” Pop Matters “Innocent abandon is still at the heart of the band” Pitchfork. An off-kilter classic that shouldn’t sound right but ultimately does, in the best tradition of The Residents, Richman, Johnston, Brain Wilson at his most bamboozled and any number of out there talents. Uncategorizable, joyous, detuned, quizzical, alluring, childlike, charming, innocent, questioning – invincible. New album from Half Japanese, an inspiration on Kurt Cobain. Jad Fair of Half Japanese has previously collaborated with Teenage Fanclub, Moe Tucker (Velvet Underground) and Daniel Johnston. 

              TRACK LISTING

              1 Swept Away
              2 Love Explosion
              3 The Puppet People
              4 Return Of The Vampire
              5 Or Ever Will
              6 No More
              7 All At Once
              8 The Walking Dead
              9 Forever In My Heart
              10 What Are You Gonna Do?
              11 It's Here
              12 Invincible
              13 No Wonder
              14 It Has Me
              15 Indestructible

              Half Japanese

              Why Not?

                Half Japanese have returned to peel further layers from their onion. They have a new album that's a square further on in their unpredictable musical snakes and ladders board. ‘Why Not?’ is a magical thing – it’s Springsteen’s ‘Born To Run’ recorded in a cupboard, it’s an ode to love, it’s a Wire song with two duelling guitarists being Zappa on helium, it’s Parquet Courts in a tantrum, it’s The Crickets contorted into? and The Mysterians, it’s everywhere and nowhere, baby, it’s where it’s at. On ‘Why Not?’ nuances are mused, situations explained, questions asked.

                Outside, zombies and demons roam and everyday aliens emerge from spaceships: it’s a technicolor film transcribed by Jad Fair and friends John Sluggett, Gilles-Vincent Rieder, Mick Hobbs and Jason Willett, their faces at the cracked window of their subterranean habitat looking out at the real world. They’re on a high from their last release: “After all these years, his wiry voice still hits every song with a shock that’s equal parts joy buzzer and defibrillator, each barely in-key bleat alternating between laughable and life-affirming,” said Pitchfork of their last opus ‘Hear The Lion Roar’.

                To which All Music added that “after nearly 40 years of music-making, they're still creating some of the most engaging recordings of their lives, and that's truly something to believe in.” ‘Why Not?’ goes further. It’s an even more intense concoction, it’s further out there. It contains pieces of fluffy thought-provoking music, a bag of sentiments delivered with a real sense of wonderment at how the normal world revolves; all powered with heart and soul, some crunchy guitars, a cello and reverb set-to-kill infiltrating their storytelling. ‘Why’d They Do It?’ quizzes track 11. Because they can. 

                STAFF COMMENTS

                Barry says: Why not indeed?

                TRACK LISTING

                1. The Future Is Ours
                2. The Face
                3. Why Not?
                4. Amazing
                5. Demons Of Doom
                6. A Word To The Wise
                7. Bring On The Night
                8. Zombie Island Massacre
                9. Better Days
                10. Spaceship To Mars
                11. Why'd They Do It?
                12. Magic
                13. Falling

                Half Japanese

                Volume 3 : 1990-1995

                Formed in the mid-70s, and setting the standard for post-punk ever since, Jad and David Fair and Half Japanese return with a new volume that finds us twenty years into their story. The 90s would see them under a new spotlight as Kurt Cobain used his celebrity to tell anyone that would listen about their greatness, and had the band tour with Nirvana. They would respond with three of the most wild and varied albums in their career.

                Continuing their Fire deluxe reissues of the entire Half Japanese catalogue, Volume Three: 1990-1995 is the third of four volumes containing three LPs/CDs. This next set of Half Japanese LPs begins with 1990’s explosively, noisy and chaotic (sometimes improvised) ‘We Are They Who Ache With Amorous Love’ featuring their cover of the Them garage rock classic “Gloria” and two tracks “Titanic" and "Hand Without a Body” that were co-written with the like-minded Daniel Johnston. Two years later the notably more delicate and, dare we say, jangly, ‘Fire In The Sky’ (1992) arrived at a pivotal time for the group when they gained notable recognition from the likes of Sonic Youth, Nirvana, Teenage Fanclub and Yo La Tengo (whose Ira Kaplan guests on the record).

                This highly anticipated third installation closes the trio with 1995’s ‘Hot’ which became MTVs album of the week on release, with Michael Goldbery writing “Hot, mixes Sonic Youth-style noise, Stooges primitivism and ’60s pop with excellent results. “Lucky Ones” is a simply charming number (“A good thing just got better/ As better as better can be”) reminiscent of Jonathan Richman, while “Drum Straight” is dose of feedback drenched skonk and “Vampire” rocks hard liken the Sonic’s “Bull In The Heather.” Fire’s colossal Half Japanese series began last year with the Record Store Day exclusive of ‘Half Gentleman/Not Beasts’, this set contains the records in their original form with extras that later appeared on CD formats available. It will also include original artwork from Jad Fair and liner notes by Half Japanese hall of famer Mark David Jickling. “Cutting straight to the gut. Jad’s phrasing matches surging sentiments, creating a counterpoint to the spot-on music. When they grind out a groove half-rhythmic/half-blank cadences, the woozy disconnect is oddly compelling” Pitchfork’s Best New Reissue (Volume 2: 1987-1989)

                “An impressive and well-assembled study of one of this band's more interesting periods” - All Music.

                “This should also lay to rest any questions about the importance of Half Japanese. Without them, we wouldn’t have the primitive pop of Beat Happening nor the id-bearing beauty of Daniel Johnston” - Paste Magazine. 

                TRACK LISTING

                We Are They Who Ache With Amorous Love:
                1 "Every Hour "
                2 "Elevator Boy"
                3 "Gloria"
                4 "Ear "
                5 "The Titanic"
                6 "Our Eyes"
                7 "Spin "
                8 "Up And Down"
                9 "Run "
                10 "All Of Me"
                11 "Hand Without A Body"
                12 "Going Home"
                13 "Three Rings"
                14 "How Did You Know? "
                15 "Then We Walk"
                16 "Secret "
                17 "Best "
                18 "The House I Live In"
                19 "Shanty Town"
                20 "Everything Is Right "

                Fire In The Sky:
                1 "UFO Expert"
                2 "Tears Stupid Tears"
                3 "Always "
                4 "This Could Be The Night"
                5 "Possum Head"
                6 "Frosty"
                7 "Turn Your Life Around"
                8 "I Love A Mystery"
                9 "12 Houses"
                10 "Hangar 18"
                11 "Magic Kingdom"
                12 "It's No Wonder"
                13 "Fire In The Sky"
                14 "Good Luck"
                15 "Gates Of Glory"
                16 "Everyone Knows"
                17 "I Heard Her Call My Name"
                18 "Eye Of The Hurricane"
                19 "It's A Clear Night"

                Hot:
                1 "Drum Straight"
                2 "True Believers"
                3 "Well"
                4 "Dark Night"
                5 "Part Of My Plan"
                6 "Vampire"
                7 "Lucky Ones"
                8 "Vast Continent"
                9 "Guess Again"
                10 "Black Fruit"
                11 "Sleep Talk"
                12 "Smile"
                13 "Lucky Town"

                Announcing "Overjoyed", the first album in 13 years from legendary punk band Half Japanese. One of the most influential bands of all time, Jad Fair and Half Japanese spearheaded the DIY and Lo-Fi movements, influencing countless bands such as Sonic Youth, Neutral Milk Hotel, Daniel Johnston, and perhaps most notably, Kurt Cobain (who ranked Half Japanese amongst his top 50 favorites, had them open the "In Utero" tour, and was wearing their t-shirt when he died). Without exaggeration, Half Japanese is one of the most important bands in the history of music. "Overjoyed" was recorded and produced by John Dieterich of Deerhoof, and ranks amongst the best albums of the band's catalogue.

                STAFF COMMENTS

                Darryl says: After 13 years away, Half Japanese return to the scene with 'Overjoyed'. And they prove themselves to be as vital as ever, melodic indie-punk that keeps them ahead of the pack.

                TRACK LISTING

                1. In Its Pull
                2. Meant To Be That Way
                3. Brave Enough
                4. Do It Nation
                5. The Time Is Now
                6. Our Love
                7. Shining Star
                8. Each Other's Arms
                9. Overjoyed And Thankful
                10. We Are Sure
                11. As Good Can Be
                12. Tiger Eyes


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