Monday, June 29, 2009
Saturday, June 27, 2009
Ever had the compulsion to have your tender tootsies gnawed on by dozens of ravenous, pygmy piranha?
That’s not what they ask you when you first enter this retro-style bath and recreation Edo period onsen complex in the heart of Odaiba - Tokyo’s first hot springs theme park, Ooedo Onsen Monagatari, opened in 2003, with waters pumped from 1,400 meters beneath terra firma.
While these statistics and some bizarre carnival attractions bamboozle your senses, you’re likely (like me) to wander outside into their huge Japanese garden, there to discover the annex where they have a pool full of mini black fish.
Garra rufa obtuse (aka “doctor fish”) can live in waters over 40 degrees Celsius in heat, and are ready (and oh-so-willing) to cleanse your soles and give you a foot pedicure. Seems that they love dining on dead skin cells of the human body, and it’s likely they prefer international cuisine, since I had three times as many of these little fellas swarming all over my feet as any of the other clientele.
Insanely ticklish and - let’s face it - downright disturbing, you might come away with a creeped-out chill and a feeling that your toes have been violated, but your lower digits have never been softer or smoother.
Saturday, June 20, 2009
This baby knocked our socks off today, although calling it a 'baby' is a wee bit of a misnomer, since the brand new, iconic RX-78-2 Gundam statue at Odaiba's Shiokaze Park here in Tokyo - still under construction, but almost ready to be unveiled in July 2009 - towers over innocent, earthbound bystanders at around 18 meters.
It also weighs in at 35 tons, so close proximity in this earthquake-prone country may not be so advisable. What the statue does do is make the nearby copy of the Statue of Liberty look, well, tired and matronly by comparison. Not to mention insignificant.
The full-scale Gundam figure is being put together to commemorate the 30th anniversary of the first broadcast of the rather spiffy mecha anime TV series, Mobile Suit Gundam.
Our lumbering suit of futuristic combat armour also exudes mist from various points in his body, and is apparently going to look a treat in the evenings with some special lighting. Personally, I was gob-smacked; this is just plain brilliant.
Word has it that other people can train-spot this baby for free up until the end of August - whereupon it'll be torn down, sad to say.
Monday, June 15, 2009
OK, so the first time I saw this was at a shrine, with flowers and sake offerings, at the holier than holy Kamakura, near Tokyo.
I was with my mate, Briony Wright, and we both nearly flipped out - I mean, who is lucky enough to have a beer named after them? Complete with katakana subtitles?
Ends up the beer was not so cool, though. Bergen Brau is actually from South Korea, is el cheapo (like me), and tastes like crap.
Oh well - the can is funky enough.
Monday, June 8, 2009
Did a crap DJ and sound system set last weekend for the TTAK crew here in Tokyo, and you can download the 60-minute bugger for free right HERE, courtesy of the cool people @ Fun in the Murky:
ANDREZ BERGEN, LIVE/DJ SET @ TTAK, TOKYO 30 MAY 2009
1. Andrez Bergen - Merian Cooper
2. Little Nobody - Compulsion (Bitch Shift remix)
3. Little Nobody - Compulsion (Wyndell Long remix)
4. Little Nobody - Robota (Jammin' Unit remix)
5. Veronica du Lac - Because It Pays So Thin (Bill Youngman remix)
6. Little Nobody - Compulsion (Luke's Anger remix)
7. Little Nobody - Compulsion (Donk Boys remix)
8. Funk Gadget - Blah Blah (Patrick Pulsinger remix)
9. My Exit Music - Donkey Powder
10. Little Nobody vs. DJ Fodder - Cocaine Speaking (Dave Tarrida remix)
11. DJ Fodder - Busted Piano (A Quickie Opening Movement)
12. Little Nobody - Fear Of A Black Bat
13. Little Nobody - Poiseworks (Funk Gadget remix)
14. Little Nobody - Metropolis How?
15. Little Nobody - Compulsion (Koda remix)
16. Little Nobody - Get Away From It All (AB- mix)
17. DJ Rush - Jack Your Body
18. Little Nobody vs. Someone B.I.G - I, Gottaman (Il Capitano's Contraband mix)
19. Luke's Anger - Working Overtime
20. Little Nobody - Compulsion (Gadget Cassette remix)
21. Little Nobody - Compulsion
22. Little Nobody - All Humanoids Must Not Escape
23. Little Nobody feat. Toshiyuki Yasuda - Robota (Paul Birken remix)
24. Little Nobody - Alright Already (Si Begg remix)
25. Little Nobody - Krinkle Kut
26. Little Nobody vs. DJ Fodder - Cocaine Speaking (Jason Leach remix)
Messy as heck and warts included...
I was also quite smashed, and was getting a fair way there before I started playing at 12, using a turntable, two CD players, an FM tuner, a laptop that kept bumming-up and crashing, an iPod, and a dictaphone. One of the channels (the one with the dictaphone) seemed to drop out somewhere at the beginning of the set, but I couldn't be bothered fixing it.
Tracklist looks terribly self-indulgent, what with all the Little Nobody references, but most of these little numbers are the rather brilliant remixes I've been getting this year, so I just really wanted to throw them out there on a half-decent system. And man they work. The DJ Rush track and the Luke's Anger number I added in 'cos I love 'em. As you probably know.
DJing isn't really my niche these days (when was it? Ha Ha Ha!), especially going principally digital, so it's messy and I know there were lots of annoying mistakes in there and moments when I completely zoned out, focused instead on the next beer or getting tangled in the headphones cord, but overall it went down a treat and at least I didn't bust the crossfader.
Tuesday, June 2, 2009
There's a brand new propaganda bomb/interview thingy with me up on the way cool Elektrax site, and I'm thinking one or two regular readers here may be curious - if, indeed, there are one or two people who actually peruse this site (slack-arse that I am, I never bother checking stats). Anyway, here's a sample of my crap philosophizing:
“Yeah, I’ve kind of lost count exactly how many names I’ve worked under,” Bergen acknowledges from his base of operations in Tokyo, Japan. “Most of them were conjured up either as a joke, or with specific musical perimeters in mind, but then the lines get blurred and I forget which category I’m supposed to be focused on. It’d be frustrating if I actually cared.”
The interview in its entirety, which some people may find relatively self-indulgent and/or inane, while others might perceive it as historically interesting, is online here.