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eX-Girl / Keikos / Super Junky Monkey

IppikiOkami

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A couple years ago I stumbled onto eX-Girl - some of the weirdest, wackiest and addictive sound I've ever heard. They kinda defy description, but if you imagine the three-way-hybrid love child of opera, space aliens and GWAR, you'd be pretty close to the mark.

It's actually the brain child of Hoppy Kamiyama, a.k.a. "The Brian Eno of Japan" - he signed up three women who were accomplished singers but who had never played an instrument before, and forged them into a bizarre punk/metal/opera/techno band with some serious space age overtones, a fondness for frogs and for some really, really strange onstage costumes...

Anyway, it's pretty experimental as music goes and some of it falls flat, but the rest frequently approaches brilliance. The band lineup has always been a trio but personnel have changed with every album, with (I think) Kirilola being the only original member at the present time. For their most recent album, "Endangered Species," they got guitarist Keiko (who later changed her name to Keikos,) formerly of the defunct punk/rap/metal band Super Junky Monkey (they broke up after their vocalist fell off a Tokyo highrise balcony.) Punk metal isn't really my thing, but what a guitarist!

There are a couple tunes on the SJM "Parasitic People" album that sound as raw and intense as early King Crimson; on "The Letter From Mr. Triscuits," the last tune on "Endangered Species," Keikos just cuts loose with some incredible, melodic solo jamming, sounding like a lost sister of Michael Schenker.

eX-Girl apparently did a gig in the LA area last spring (which I didn't hear about until after the fact, so I'll be kicking myself bitterly until they come back,) and from what I've read the band lineup has once again changed and Keikos has left...?

Anybody have any other info on eX-Girl? On Keikos? 'Can't wait to hear what they do next, and from now on I keep my eyes glued to the concert listings...

[This form says "You do not have enough posts yet to add URLs to third-party websites," but there are couple of clips on YouTube that give you a good idea of eX-Girl/SJM weirdness: Search for "Hettakorii no Ottokotou" - The audio is a little saturated (tiny venue,) but you'll get the general idea... and "Buckin' the Bolts" by Super Junky Monkey. I think either clip is linked in the list to the right of the other...]


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