O is for Oboreta Ebi No Kenshi Houkokusho
Oboreta Ebi or the bands official English translation The Autopsy Report of a Drowned Shrimp are a band that even amongst Kansai's legion of off-the-wall eccentrics are in an oddball league entirely of their own.
Oboreta Ebi are the brainchild of visual artist and contra-bass player Yamamoto Kazuki (山本一慶). Kazuki developed a childhood obsession with "kaiju" (monsters) from Japanese movies and TV shows like Godzilla, Ultraman and Kamen Rider and dreamed of one day forming his very own kaiju band. Young Kazuki spent hours sketching designs and concepts in his school notebook before eventually settling on the idea of creating a band of monster shrimp. Fascinated by their alien-like exoskeletons he began making his own masks and costumes. But the concept didn't end there. Kazuki also wanted the band to sound like the sort of music one might a imagine a group of overgrown, sentient prawns making.
So what sort of music do shrimp make? As it turns out they sound like a sort of cinematic, nautical themed P-Funk mixed The Residents and the Star Wars cantina band.In fact Kazuki's own dreadlocked shrimp mask is a tribute to to the grand wizard of funk himself George Clinton. Kazuki's frantic slapped basslines form the backbone of the crustean 7-pieces groove accompanied by a polyrhythmic percussion section and some grandiose horns. The bands also draws the inspiration for its name from the Frank Zappa album "Ship Arriving Too Late to Save a Witch".
The bands been together for over 10 years now in various evolving forms and have just recently put out their first proper release on Osaka underground label Gyuune Cassette which you can get here.
I won't be uploading that so the best alternative I could think of was to rip the audio from a DVD the band gave away at a talk show/performance I attended about 2 years ago. What you get is 3 tracks and over 15 minutes of decent audio quality music from one of the most unique and entertaining bands in Japan. Be sure to catch them live if you have the chance for and experience you won't forget.