detroit-04detroit7 is a Japanese punk/garage rock band formed in Tokyo in 2001. The band consists of Nabana Tomomi (vocals, guitar), Kotajima Nobuaki (bass), and Yamaguchi Miyoko (drum). Nabana, who performs barefoot, sings, mostly, in heavily-accented Englishdetroit-08B which, in their originals, is no big deal. But, since Japanese people speaking English tend to substitute r’s and l’s for each other, when Nabana sings Nirvana‘s “Rape Me,” which they cover, the power of that song’s message is lessened. But, detroit7‘s version still rocks. The band’s sound is influenced by 70’s proto-punk, like MC5 and, especially, The Stooges. So, it makes sense for this band to cover Nirvana since Kurt Cobain wrote in his journals numerous times that 1973’s “Raw Power” was his favourite album of all time.

detroit7‘s first full-length, “1Love,” released in 2005, opens with the raw power of “Inside,” blending the influence of both The Stooges and Nirvana,D7-2005-1 then continues with the furious garage punk of “Howl.” They ease up a little on the less frenzied tracks “2:27AM” and “This Side of Paradise,” an awesome cut.D7-2005.2 “Come On” is a another cool, more restrained, track not on this album, but released as a single in 2004. That song is sung in Japanese, as is “Ibitsu no Hana,” which is on this album but was re-recorded, in a better version, for their next album. “Shot My Right Temple” rages like “Bleach”-era Nirvana, while the album closes with the fiery 6-minute, guitar-soaked anthem,D7-2005.3 “Golden Globe,” which is sung in Japanese, too. In 2005, detroit7 also released a pair of EP’s appropriately titled “EP Vol. 1” and “EP Vol. 2” which, together amounted to a full album. Japanese artists often release new material in volume. “LOVE&CONFUSED” opens “Vol. 1” with the band’s signature garage punk intensity, then “Taiyou wo Tokashita Umi,” sung in Japanese, closes it out with rock restraint. “KISS THE MOON,” a garage punker, and “to be free,” a rocker, are standouts on “Vol. 2,” but “BUZZ OFF” is the real gem, with it’s bluesy guitar riff and it’s foot-tapping drum beat. Watch the video for “Come On” here:

detroit7‘s second album, “Great Romantic,” released in 2006, offered more Stooges-worship, but also had more songs sung in Japanese than their previous release. The best of these is the previously mentioned “Ibitsu no Hana,”D7-2006 which translates as “Distorted Flower.” This song wraps around your brain and never lets go. Seriously. Listen. Let it take hold. “Akai Hana,” which translates as “Red Flower” (Nabana loves flowers!), is another stunner but of the less intense variety. “Hitori Gochiru” is a cool poppy rocker, while “Owari wa Hajimari” is another garage rocker with a bit of Farfisa added in the mix. “Kono Itoshiki Sekai” is a slow buring ballad, while the mid-tempo rocker “Yume No Haza Made” reminds me of the song “Sherry” by the late great Japanese rock band SADS. “This Love Sucks” is a fiery rocker with a false folky start, and “Beautiful Song” is the best of the few English tracks (but, it should be since it’s their third recording of it). Watch the video for “Akai Hana” here:

In 2008, detroit7 released another EP, “Third Star From the Earth,” in which Nabana took to English for great tracks like “IN THE SUNSHINE” and “Microphone Drives,”D7-2008 and Japanese, mostly, for the very 60’s-ish “Cry For The Moon” (love the riff that drives this song) and “Watering!” In 2009, the band released their self-titled U.S. debut, but it had 3 tracks from the previous EP and the rest from an upcoming album. That album, “Black & White,” released later that year, is, by far, their best. But, maybe I think that because it was the first album of detroit7‘s that I heard. It also had the best cover with a sultry photo Nabana’s pretty face.D7-2009 “WHY?” opens the album with ferocious garage rocking intensity. She screams, “You! Don’t! Love! Me!” then wonders, “Why?!” “COLD HEAT,” like the first track, continues the Stooges-worship and, if you doubt that comparison, well, they spell it out for you in the aptly-named third track, “STOOGES.” Best song Iggy Pop never wrote! Elsewhere, “DDD” is a hooky rocker, “DOWN BEAT” is exactly that but badass, “TORCH SONG,” in Japanese, is kind of that and an awesome ballad, and “Owaranai Uta,” in Japanese, is a cool rocker. Finally, the band turns in a cover of The Kingsmen‘s frat rock classic “Louie Louie,” as if recorded by The Stooges, of course. Watch the video for “COLD HEAT” here:

In 2010, detroit7 released yet another EP, “Fresh,” and a best album, “Fever.” Then, later that year, they released their 4th full-length, “NUDE” (or 5th if you include the U.S. debut). The cover, this time, had a photo of Nabana’s feet, her performance trademark. And, of course, their sound had not changed at all.D7- NUDE If you don’t like one detroit7 album, then you won’t like any of the other albums. But, I absolutely love their Stooges-worshipping! This release, though, once again had a majority of Japanese tracks. “JOY” opens the album with their typical garage rock fury, and continues with more cool tracks like “Samidaru Kimi,” “Nounai POP,” and, especially, “BREAK,” my favorite track. “Sad Summer” is a brief punker in which Nabana snarls her vocals, and “LIFE” closes out the album with an almost Rage Against the Machine-like groove. Watch the video for “Samidaru Kimi” from “NUDE” and “HERE I AM,” from a single released in 2011, here:

detroit-01detroit-07Detroit7 Discography
2003.11.26 VERTIGO [Mini-Album]
2004.05.12 “COME ON” [Single]
2005.01.26 1LOVE [Album]
2005.07.21 detroit7 EP Vol.1 [Mini-Album]
2005.11.23 detroit7 EP Vol.2 [Mini-Album]
2006.11.29 GREAT Romantic [Album]
2008.01.17 Third Star From The Earth [Mini-Album]
2009.02.25 detroit BABYLON (Live) [Mini-Album]
2009.03.10 detroit7 [Album]
2009.05.20 Black & White [Album]
2010.01.20 FRESH [Mini-Album]
2010.01.20 FEVER (Best) [Album]
2010.10.06 NUDE [Album]
2011.12.00 “HERE I AM” [Single]

Website: DetroitSeven Official Website


2 responses to “detroit7

  1. Pingback: IO Echo’s “Addicted” & Bugy Craxone | My Heart Explodes·

  2. Pingback: detroit7 « Girls, Guns & Zombies!·

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