[stextbox id=”custom” caption=”Just the facts …” color=”000000″ ccolor=”ffffff” bgcolor=”dedede” cbgcolor=”cc0000″]

Lagrimas de Maria, 2002
Label: Dead Girls
Website: kawamurakaori.com


Japanese Rockabilly: no corporate love songs

Sorrow was a female fronted rock / rockabilly project of the late great Japanese / Russian rock goddess Kawamura Kaori, their album Lagrimas de Maria is icon bashing bar room brawl lyrics surgically stitched together with bare knuckles rock and roll.

As with many Japanese bands performing in English, some of the pronunciations are off, but if you are expecting pasteurized prepackaged American girl pop here, forget it! These are not happy corporate love songs, they are ransom notes drenched in rage and sadness, then delivered on brick through your window late at night.

The noise makers are:

  • Kaori … vocals / guitar
  • Motoaki … guitar
  • Yuichi … bass
  • Masato … drums
    • Ransom notes drenched in rage and sadness

      The CD booklet has a minor issue as not all the times listed match the actual song times. The cover and song translations are a bit clunky and misspelled on the CD booklet. Although it does have a few interesting photos of the band.

      The track list follows:

      1. Pipeline, time … 2:02
      (A cover of The Chantays classic.)

      2. God Coming, time … 3:26

      3. Estados, Unidos, America, time … 3:32

      4. Rubber sole, time … 2:27

      5. Lagrimas de Maria, time … 3:33

      6. Husky, time … 4:25

      7. Teenage Hero, time … 2:56

      8. Ace of Spade, time … 2:30

      9. Love & Gold, time … 2:05

      10. La-Rotaila-Rockai, time … 4:47

      11. Death on Spade, time … 4:13

      12. Spike, time … 3:08

      A western audience might not relate to the uncompromising Clash like commentaries on God and country (the USA). Still for those more daring, there is a lot to savor here, a riveting rockabilly beat with side orders of Tex-Mex and surf guitar.

      The stand up and take notice tracks are:

      Teenage Hero … A rebel angst anthem with words to live by “Trigger Happy! I’m the Trigger Happy!” and a great opening riff. Sounds like they are singing “too much metal”.

      Rubber sole … twangy guitar + harmonica + sultry vocals = damn skippy.

      Death on Spade … slow intro then kick starts into a musical festival of dark themed lyrics and danceable pop-abilly.

      The Takeaway:
      RiceburnerFM recommends Lagrimas de Maria, by Sorrow.
      It is rock / rockabilly stripped down to the essential raw emotion with unrelenting riffs, hooks and uncommon craftsmanship music wise. Do your ears the favor, don’t wait for this sound to turn up on a video game trailer (WET 2?).

      videos courtesy youtube / RALE16HGO

      kaori kawamura

      photo from Flickr / umitomo

      review: Kaori Kawamura, Weed