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Thursday, March 27, 2008


Detroit 7: Playing at SXSW is killer!

Staff writer

Detroit 7 are one of Tokyo's most explosive bands, a tight trio blasting out raw, Iggy Pop-inspired garage punk and dripping with showmanship. At their performance at South by Southwest's Japan Nite on March 14, singer Tomomi Nabana drawled her lyrics in a deep husk, thrashing her left-handed guitar like a demon as bassist Nobuaki Kotajima prowled the stage and Miyoko Yamaguchi battered her drum kit to shards. The crowd, of course, went wild.

Detroit 7
Detroit 7 by their hotel pool DANIEL ROBSON PHOTO

Just hours before this, their debut U.S. live show, the band sat down for a chat in the lobby of their villa-esque hotel.

Miyoko Yamaguchi: "Austin's hot!"

Tomomi Nabana: "It's hot, but it's not as hot as the summer in Japan."

M.Y.: "Yeah, but it's only March. We arrived late at night two nights ago, so we didn't realize how hot it was, but this morning I was bowled over. And we're playing three times in two days! Tomorrow's going to be killer."

Nobuaki Kotajima: "It's too much, really. It's gonna be full-on from today."

M.Y.: "But at least we had a relaxing day yesterday. I walked around a bit. Every venue has another venue next door, and you can hear them all out on the street."

T.N.: "But you won't hear anything else when we're playing (laughs)."

M.Y.: "We went to Japan Bash (an outdoor show featuring Japanese bands Ketchup Mania, Avengers In Sci-Fi, Toddle and Peelander-Z) yesterday. That was fun. The bands were working hard to speak to the audience in English."

T.N.: "I studied before we came here. I listened to language CDs that are supposed to help you learn English really quickly. But I stutter a lot when I speak English. It's not so smooth yet."

N.K.: "I've been practicing saying 'please' and 'thank you.' The rest can be translated for me, as long as I can be polite."

M.Y.: "We're playing at Japan Nite tonight, so all the bands are Japanese. But each band is completely different in style. And anyway, at tomorrow's shows I think we're playing with American bands, so we'll get to do both. It's our first time to play in the U.S., so it's a good start."

T.N.: "I've no idea whether the Japan obsessives will like us! But they probably will."

N.K.: "We'll make them like us!"

T.N.: "They'll probably like 'Mahou Tsukai Sally,' because it's a cover of an anime theme song. We originally covered that for a compilation in Japan and we always play it in our set."

N.K.: "It's a killer tune."

T.N.: "After SXSW, we're going on tour around the U.S. I'm thrilled! We're playing every single night; it's just great to play in so many places. And the sky seems huge in America. You can't see the sky so well in Japan."

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