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Just how Sky-HI Can This Rapper Go? Sonic the Hedgehog 2 Lands in Japan and Music Video!

22 Aug

nHB1mW XWZi1nyCbvSXF0jp3Jnoimj9 TBlleK9hx120CGz5aoMoTDDZCwMQyqec2q1JIgKxJapan’s phenomenal rapper, SKY-HI, must love Sonic the Hedgehog! After news of the third movie in development for 2024 (sadly the fate of Dr. Robotnik’s role is unclear because of Jim Carrey wanting to retire), this talent needed to sing the praises with ‘Fly Without Wings,’ and offer a version with the Blue Blur himself!

As one of Japan’s most creative and proactive artists and the president and producer of cutting-edge management company/label BMSG, SKY-HI continues to push the boundaries of music every day.

Now, as the mega-hit movie ‘Sonic the Hedgehog 2’ is finally released in theaters in Japan, SKY-HI has contributed his official movie-inspired track ‘Fly Without Wings’, which is released today (JST). The first version has some clear Sonic vibes to it, but there’s a second version!

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[Interview] Songbirds. More Than Just A Museum Displaying Priceless Electric Guitars….

12 Aug

SongbirdsAvailable to rent on Amazon Prime and other streaming platforms.

Now available on VOD is Songbirds, a wonderful documentary about a museum (named after this bird) dedicated to showing how the electric guitar became what it is today. It’s about the people who built this place to what it is now, how the pandemic affected its business model, its closure and when it rose from the ashes like a phoenix to become something even better!

Their goal is to do more than showcase the history and influence of this instrument in 20th century music. Within its doors, people could play with the instruments (after paying a fee), and attend special concerts from those musicians who long to touch that first production telecaster. In its latest form, it’s to teach young children how to play too!

Dagan W. Beckett (pictured below, left) is the creative mind who made this one-hour length film. His love for this establishment is clearly evident from the first frame to last. He delivers not only a beautiful look back at this place’s founding but also hits all the right notes (pardoning the pun) to show us why more places like this need to exist around the world. Dagon BeckettBut even I had a few questions just to confirm a few lingering thoughts. It was a pleasure to correspond with him about this work.

Can we please have an introduction from you for those readers unfamiliar with your work?

I am a filmmaker/director currently located in Chattanooga, Tennessee which is just North of Atlanta. The documentary film, Songbirds, is my debut work and my team and I are so very fortunate to have received a handful of awards for it, as well as an Emmy® for best Topical Documentary.

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Introducing Arcanamusica to Manga. A Multidimensional Music Project.

8 Aug

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Arcanamusica, the multidimensional media-mix collaboration project from Shueisha and avex, will be made into a manga this summer.

When the mysterious music app named Arcanamusica suddenly appears on smartphones out of nowhere, the five protagonists Shizuka Kawawa, Gakunoshin Maimiya, Riku Shibuyoshi, Itsuku Igashima and Kazuki Jujo are given their new “Arcana names” (AN), making them RiZ, DarkPalace, Shibukichi, Ikkun and Rejje, and we follow each of them as they pursue their ambitions as singers and streamers.

The manga version will depict the truth behind the app and the secrets held by the five lead characters, as the mysteries behind Arcanamusica are gradually revealed…

With the cooperation of ‘Ikémen Series’ game developer CYBIRD Co., Ltd., Arcanamusica featured in a series of commercial spots during Anime Expo 2022, which ended on July 4; the spots sparked a huge reaction, especially from outside of Japan.

Arcanamusica’s RiZ (Shizuka Kawawa) – ‘My song’

Arcanamusica’s Rejje (Kazuki Jujo) – ‘Tenohira Dancer’

In addition, Arcanamusica will participate in Animate Girls Festival 2022 on Nov 5 & 6 in Ikebukuro, Tokyo! They will have both an exhibition booth and a stage appearance at the event. For further information, check out the festival’s official website and Twitter account.

Event information

Animate Girls Festival 2022 (Japanese)

Official website: https://agf-ikebukuro.jp/s/agf2022/

Twitter: https://twitter.com/AGF_info

The Arcanamusica project will continue its constant and aggressive multidimensional activity, so don’t miss it! And don’t forget to check the official website and Twitter account for more information.

For more Arcanamusica Information

Behind the Scenes, Arcanamusica are:

  • Shizuka Kawawa: RiZ (music produced by Yuri Kuriyama) / voiced by Kakeru Hatano
  • Gakunoshin Maimiya: DarkPalace (music produced by SLAVE.V-V-R) / voiced by ROβiN
  • Itsuku Igashima: Ikkun (music produced by Somari) / voiced by Sho Sakagami
  • Riku Shibuyoshi: Shibukichi (music produced by Kinoshita) / voiced by Kosuke Shiraishi
  • Kazuki Jujo: Rejje (music produced by Natsuyama Yotsugi) / voiced by Tomohiro Hatano

Inu-Oh is Swoon Worthy Hellraiser and a Lot More at Fantasia 2022

27 Jul

Inu-Oh PosterPlaying at Fantasia 2022 July 27 9:30 PM and Coming to theatres August 12, 2022 Courtesy of GKIDS

Masaaki Yuasa’s musical fantasy is very ambitious, and that should be of no surprise for anyone who loves rock and roll or heavy metal. There’s a bit of history too, but to say how much of it is accurate is tough to ascertain. That’s because there’s not a lot of surviving records about the real life Inu-Oh (犬王, lit. “Dog King”). 

The themes in this self-titled movie concerns defying the status quo and showing that it’s okay to be yourself. That’s how Inu-Oh lives his life. He believes there’s no need to conform, especially when he’s born deformed Sadly, people run away if they see him in his true form. Thus, he’s always wearing a mask and dons a huge garment to cover up his entire body. It’s a shame nobody can see past his ugliness, but thankfully Toma can. That’s because he’s blind.

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Blondie’s Musical Archives is Coming in One Big Z2 Package!

15 Jul

Blondie Against The Odds

In the mid-70s, singer Debbie Harry and guitarist Chris Stein were more than pioneers. Not only did they pioneer the new wave genre, but also broke the mold for what the New York sound was about. The band Blondie was more than a punk rock band too. From their self-titled debut album, “In the Flesh” got heads turning, and all it took were two more albums before they became mainstream with the disco-infused “Heart of Glass.”

I fell in love with their music somewhere in between, and back then, all I had were regular magazines to get any information about who they were. We didn’t have the Internet back then. Because they were relatively young, and as their fame grew, so did my passion to collect all their albums.

Coinciding with the upcoming launch of the Blondie: Against The Odds graphic novel–which features a short biography, and stories based on their music–this fall, Z2 Comics and Blondie will include the 124-track archival box set Against the Odds 1974 – 1982 too! It’s a curated collection, remastered from original analog tapes on vinyl and I can’t be any more excited. Now if only they can visit Victoria, BC and perform here! Realistically, it’d have to be in Vancouver, BC; I’ll be fine with that too.

The album will be out on August 26, 2022, but if you’re patient, buying the version with the graphic novel will make the experience all the more worthwhile.

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From the Z2 Press Release:

The package features 52 bonus tracks across four albums—Plaza Sound, Parallel Beats, Coca Cola, and Home Sounds—and comes with a 128-page hardcover book inside a foil-wrapped slipcase.

The package definitively captures the iconic band’s inception and rise, as Blondie merged disco, rock, and beyond in the punk cradle of New York City’s Lower East Side. Limited to 100 copies, the Blondie 1974-1982: Against The Odds 4-LP box set will be released in platinum editions of the Blondie: Against The Odds graphic novel anthology.

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