Tokyo, Japan’s premiere power pop quartet, Gorilla* make their Hi-Vo debut with a 6 song 12” EP. In typical Japanese fashion, these guys know their heroes well and have honed the sound of late 70s power pop to perfection. Drawing on influences from the obvious (Raspberries, Big Star, Romantics) to the obscure (Gary Charlson, Off Broadway, Cavern), Gorilla delivers a six-pack of tunes that chime (the 12 string epic “Oh Tonight”) and punch (the hi-velocity “It’s All Pop!”). No matter what, this platter will stick in your head.
Gorilla* (the asterisk is on purpose) hail from Tokyo, Japan. The story begins with Pop N Roll (Atsushi) and Kenny from The Cokes talking about POWERPOP at Fifi’s (Teengenerate) bar “Poor Cow”. They decided to start a band called “Powerpops” for fun. The members were Kenny, Pop N and Fifi as a drummer. Their first show was at the end of 2011—their first song: a cover of The Flamin’ Groovies’ “Shake Some Action.”
The following year Fifi changed the band name to “GORILLA*” and left. 440 from The Knocks took his place on the drums. They recorded some original songs and released the single, “Mary Anne/Forever” on Third Dimensional Records in 2014. They toured Japan with Cozy from Minneapolis and Chicago’s legendary Pezband then added Jun on guitar in 2015 (from Hateman). They subsequently played with bands such as Firestarter, Stingrays, Nobunny, Fadeaways, Muck And The Mires. In 2016 they did their first US tour New York, Washington DC, Philadelphia, and Baltimore playing with Baby Shakes, Cozy, The Jeanies and Hi-Vo’s very own Stents as well as playing live on WFMU’s Todd-O-Phonic show.
In 2017 they supported Baby Shakes Japan tour and released “It’s All Pop!” on CD for the tour. It’s sold out immediately during the tour in one week (Out of stock now. Thank you.). The vinyl version of “It’s All Pop!” is out May 2017 from Hidden Volume Records.
released May 19, 2017
All songs written by Kenny Ogawa
Guitar: Kenny Ogawa
Drums: Yoshio 440
Guitar: Kame Berry
Guitar: Jun “Big Door” Ichioka
Recorded at Studio Fun House 2015
Mastered at Creators Box 2016
Photos: Texaco Osama at Poor Cow Shimokitazawa Tokyo Japan, Eric Planck, Joe Squared Baltimore, MD