6 August 2009

Shiina Ringo 椎名林檎

Posted by Roland under: Music .

The first rule of Shiina Ringo...dont talk about Shiina Ringo

The first rule of Shiina Ringo...don't talk about Shiina Ringo

First off, a small aside about the ridiculous conditions that the Shiina Ringo official fansite (http://www.kronekodow.com/index_e.html) has imposed on fansites. Take a look if you’re so inclined, but for some example there are some gems such as:

– Don’t put up pictures of Shiina Ringo.
– Don’t put up pictures of Shiina Ringo you’ve taken.
– Don’t put up any drawings you’ve made of Shiina Ringo.
– Don’t put up any recordings of her music.
– Don’t put up any recordings of her talking.
– Don’t put up any recordings of you imitating Shiina Ringo.

Basically, don’t do anything that appeals to your eyes or ears related to Shiina Ringo. I’m surprised her company even lets her have a musical career.

Anyway, I won’t let that detract from my enjoyment of the artist (as I post up pictures and links to her videos here, which shows my level of respect to those ridiculous fansite conditions). In a quick summary, Shiina Ringo is a Japanese musician who has enjoyed about a ten year career and major success in the Japanese market. Starting out as a solo artist, more recently she’s been more involved with her band “Tokyo Jihen” but has just released a new solo album “Superficial Gossip”. She was also known back in the day for her famous beauty mark, which she had surgically removed several years back.

But talk is cheap, what’s her music actually like? She’s one of those musician types that you can’t really tie down to one genre. Many musicians try to do this but most fail. Shiina Ringo does not. A random sampling of her music on YouTube will turn up slow ballads, fast poppy pieces, and everything in between. One of my older favorites is Mayonaka wa Junketsu, a collaboration she did with Tokyo Ska Paradise Orchestra.

Her newest album, Superficial Gossip is musical gold in my book. As I said before, the album doesn’t stick to just one genre of music, but everything she puts out on the album seems to work with her unique voice. For example, just take a listen to two singles from the album:

She can be as energetic and up front with her voice as needed and then she can turn it off and bring you down. Now just imagine a whole album of this, where you’re going along for pretty much a musical roller coaster. But it’s never jarring, you just go with the flow and enjoy whatever she serves.

Now pretty much realize that she’s been doing this for the 10-or-so years she’s been in the music business. It’s scary good.

Now if only her official fanclub could get their act together about media usage.

Shiina Ringo Official Site

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