Kansai Scene Magazine


Children of Bodom

Finnish Melodic Power Metallers

Jul 9

Namba Hatch, Osaka

This band is a real gruesome bunch, take a peek at their MySpace page and you'll be greeted by a full page, blood-splattered scene of a scythe-wielding Grim Reaper. Musically the band do have a lot more to offer that your standard power thrashers and to be honest if the vocals were a little less harsh then they may well grab a bit more of the commercially inclined fan contingency.

The guitars are fast and furious, their lead work is spot on (a mix of classical and blues licks) and the rhythm section is second to none. Surprisingly the band also uses some prog-rock style keyboard melodies, which add an unexpected but interesting side to the band's music.

Formed in Espoo, Finland they derive their name from the Lake Bodom murders (the strange incident in which four friends went camping by Lake Bodom in June 1960; three of the friends were murdered whilst sleeping and the fourth was charged but found not guilty of the deaths).

Time: 7pm • Entry ¥7,000/¥7,500
Tel: 06-7732-8888 • Metal

Marty Friedman

Internationally-Renowned Rock Guitarist

Jul 9

Club Quattro, Osaka

Ex-Megadeth guitarist Martin Adam Freidman not only speaks Japanese fluently but is a resident of Shinjuku, Tokyo. Pretty much a self-taught guitarist Freidman first became known whilst playing in the thrash metal band Cacophony alongside fellow guitarist Jason Becker in the late 80s. With their neo-classical synchronized twin lead guitar harmonies that set them aside from the onslaught of US thrashers that emerged during that period it is a shame that the band split after releasing just two albums.

From there Freidman spent nearly ten years with thrash metal legends Megadeth, his debut with the band being the platinum selling classic album Rust in Peace. In 1999 he left the band stating later that he had tired of playing metal though quite contradictory in another interview he claimed that the band were not aggressive enough.

Since Megadeth, solo life has been quite sweet for Freidman and he also appears regularly on Japanese television. In the past few years Marty has collaborated with a number of Japanese recording artists. No doubt with the knowledge acquired from being deeply involved with Japanese music he has also released a book Ii-Jyan J-Pop - An insiders view of the Japanese music scene.

For fellow guitarists who want to know about Marty's gear he plays an Ibanez guitar strung with D'Addario 10-52s through an ENGL Special Edition amp.

Time: 7pm • Entry ¥5,000/¥5,500
Tel: 06-6281-8181 • Metal Guitar

Eddie Gomez/Steve Kuhn/Billy Drummond

Jazz Supergroup-trio

Jul 22

Mister Kellys, Osaka

Puerto Rican jazz double bassist Eddie Gomez, born in 1944, is best known for his work with the late Bill Evans between 1966 and 1977. Growing up in New York, Gomez first picked up the instrument aged eleven and at thirteen enrolled at the New York City High School of Music and Art. Gomez, during an eleven-year period toured the world with Bill Evans and earned two Grammy's out of their many released recordings. In the biography of Bill Evans (How My Heart Sings, Yale University Press, 1998) writer Peter Pettinger describes Gomez's playing as ‘technical brilliance, cello-like clarity of tone, and hints of healthy aggression mixed with an extroverted lyricism'.

New York jazz pianist and composer Steve Kuhn has worked with Stan Getz, John Coltrane and Art Farmer among others. Kuhn first started playing the piano aged five and even though in the sixties he was hugely influenced by Bill Evans he managed to assert his own vigorous style on the international jazz scene.

Born in 1959, drummer Billy Drummond of Virginia first began beating the skins at four years old and in a recent Modern Drummer magazine article he was described as having a ‘surprising, adventurous approach … he arrives as one of the most promising leaderdrummers in jazz'. Drummond over the years has worked with some greats of jazz including Toots Thielmanns, Sonny Rollins, Lee Konitz (who, incidentally, is playing at Osaka's Billboard Live this month on the 16th to 18th) and Freddie Hubbard.

Time: 7pm/9:30pm • Entry ¥8,000/¥8,500 • Tel: 06-6342-5821 • Jazz

Jason Mraz

Versatile US Singer-Songwriter

Jul 30

Namba Hatch, Osaka

Thirty-one year old US singer songwriter Jason Thomas Mraz has been called an "eclectic artist with multiple varied stylistic influences". In fact his varied influences range from rock to hip-hop through folk, pop, jazz and country.

The list of names that Mraz has played with only adds to his prowess (Rolling Stones, James Blunt, Bob Dylan, Alanis Morrisette, Dave Matthews Band … ) and bearing in mind that he has only released three studio albums in six years (Waiting For My Rocket To Come, 2002, Mr. A-Z, 2005, and We Sing, We Dance, We Steal Things, 2008) he has come a long way in a very short space of time.

Part of the reason behind Mraz's apparent lack of studio releases seems to be that he spends most of his time touring, and maybe in an attempt to keep his fans happy with new releases, he openly supports taped bootlegs of his shows.

On his latest album, which Mraz claims to have penned during a time in his life when he rediscovered himself, he says "by moments of self realization, self empowerment and self improvement." and goes on, "I was happy to be able to write an album at the same time I was coming back to Earth." And the result, a breezy laid-back affair that's as good as a nice piece of subtle background theme as it is to just sit and listen to purposefully. Welcome back to Earth Jason.

Time: 7pm • Entry ¥6,000 • Tel: 06-6535-5569 • Singer-Songwriter

Live Listings July


7/1 @ Taku Taku, Kyoto
6:30pm • ¥3,500 Tel: 075-351-1321 • J-Art Rock


7/3 @ Club Quattro, Osaka
7pm • ¥6,500 Tel: 06-6281-8181 • Metal

Bennie K

7/3 @ Zepp, Osaka
6:30pm • ¥5,775 Tel: 06-6341-3525 • J-Urban

Soil & Pimp Sessions

7/3 @ Taku Taku, Kyoto
7pm • ¥3,800/¥4,300
Tel: 075-351-1321 • Funk

Joan of Arc

7/6 @ Sunsui, Osaka
5:30pm • ¥3,500/¥4,000
Tel: 0570-02-9999 • Indie Rock


7/8 @ Namba Hatch, Osaka
7pm • ¥5,000/¥5,500
Tel: 06-6341-3525 • J-Pop Duo

Marty Freidman

7/9 @ Club Quattro, Osaka
7pm • ¥5,000/¥5,500
Tel: 06-6281-8181 • Rock/Metal Guitar

Children of Bodom

7/9 @ Namba Hatch, Osaka
7pm • ¥7,000/¥7,500
Tel: 06-7732-8888 • Metal

Keiko Nakanishi

7/13 @ Namba Hatch, Osaka
5pm • ¥6,000 Tel: 06-6357-4400
• J-Pop

Da Pump

7/13 @ Zepp, Osaka
6:30pm • ¥5,775 Tel: 06-6357-4400
• J-Pop/Hip-Hop

Kenny Garrett

7/15 @ Billboard Live, Osaka
6:30pm/9:30pm • ¥5,500/¥7,500
Tel: 06-6342-7722 • Jazz Fusion Sax


7/16-17 @ Namba Hatch, Osaka
7pm • 7,800 Tel: 06-6352-7301 • Pop

LeeKonitz Trio

7/16-18 @ Billboard Live, Osaka
6:30pm/9:30pm • ¥6,000/¥8,000
Tel: 06-6342-7722 • Jazz

Kobe Metal Night ft Iron Maiden, Def Leppard, Guns & Roses and Black Sabbath cover bands

7/20 @ Vait, Kobe
6pm • ¥1,500/¥2,000
Tel: 078-392-6655 • Metal Covers

Steve Kuhn/Eddie Gomez/ Billy Drummond

7/22 @ Mister Kellys, Osaka
7pm/9:30pm • ¥8,000/¥8,500
Tel: 06-6342-5821 • Jazz Trio

Belinda Carlisle

7/21-22 @ Billboard Live, Osaka
6:30pm/9:30pm • ¥8,500
Tel: 06-6342-7722 • Pop Vocal

Scott Matin

7/24 @ Mister Kellys, Osaka
7pm/9:30pm • ¥5,000/¥5,500
Tel: 06-6342-5821 • Latin/Funk/Soul

The Pillows

7/24 @ Namba Hatch, Osaka
7pm • ¥3,675/¥4,200
Tel: 06-6341-3525 • Rock

Fuji Rock Festival ft. Travis/ Primal Scream/Ben Folds/ Kate Nash/Ian Brown/Feeder

7/25-27 @ Naeba Ski Resort
Ticket Enquiry (in English)
Email: [email protected]
• ¥39,000 – 3 day ticket
• ¥16,800 – 1 day ticket
• accompanied under 12's free entry
• Car parking - ¥3,000 per day
• Campsite - ¥3,000 per day / person


7/27 @ Varit, Kobe
6pm • ¥3,300/¥3,800
Tel: 078-392-6655 • J-Goth/Rock

Stacy Orrico

7/28 @ Billboard Live, Osaka
6:30pm/9:30pm • ¥6,400/¥8,400
Tel: 06-6342-7722 • Pop Vocal

Jason Mraz

7/30 @ Namba Hatch, Osaka
7pm • ¥6,000 Tel: 06-6535-5569
• Singer Songwriter

Summer Sonic 08 ft. The Verve/The Prodigy/ Sex Pistols/Coldplay

8/9-10 @ Maishima Summer Sonic Osaka Site
• Day 1, 9am • Day 2, 11am
• ¥26,000 (2 day ticket)
Tel: 0180-993-030

Compiled by Phillip Jackson

:: Online Articles


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Yatsubuchi-no-taki, Shiga


Small is beautiful
Taketomi Island, Okinawa


A yen for Kyushu
Budget traveling in Kyushu


The orange people of the forest
Sumatra, Indonesia


Lifting off
Goreme and Cappadocia, Turkey

:: update

A room at the inn
A round up of budget accommodation in Kansai

:: culture

Noodles in the night
Traditional mobile munchies

:: Kansai Listings


Up to date cinema listings guide so you always know what's on, where and when!

:: ART

Best exhibitions & listings


Best events & listings


Best gigs & listings


All the hot picks

:: Also in this month's mag

:: dRink

Hobgoblin, Sannomiya


Sam&Dave 5, Nagahoribashi


Best festivals & listings


New releases


Best films & cinema listings


Budget kipping


Up and away
Mt. Daisen, Tottori


More bangs for your baht
Bangkok on $2 a day


Hole lot of twee?
Bruges, Belgium


Blu-ray is here to stay
What Blu-ray means to you


Rock and roll artist
Walderedo DeOliviera