7 Must-Hear Japanese Bands

5.3.2018 by Engin Altunlu

In these no-borders times, we’re seemingly always exchanging culture, music and new discoveries. But the other day I thought that we’re a bit closed in the music we normally have in Europe. So I decided to open my geeky box of rock bands –it’s a hard disk by the way-  from everywhere on our planet, and I picked some cool Japanese bands to share with you!

I like progressive rock so maybe I was kind of biased about my selection, but I hope you like it.

Here are 7 Japanese bands that you must hear!


I start with a very famous one. A Tokyo-based  instrumental, post-rock, experimental band. Members are: Takaakira "Taka" Goto (electric guitar, glockenspiel), Hideki "Yoda" Suematsu (electric guitar, glockenspiel) and Tamaki Kunishi (bass guitar, electric guitar, piano, glockenspiel). If you get their style, this music is very addictive with its cool sound and harmony.

More info: http://www.monoofjapan.com/en/


Cloud Nine(9)

Their music is difficult to define, but let’s call it fusion, alternative math rock… I love their bass sound and very melodic riffs.

More on : https://cloud-nine-9.bandcamp.com/releases


About Tess

This band has an interesting formation because they have two guitars, two basses and two drums. But hey, if it works don’t mess with it.

Be ready for energetic rhythms and very cool tones from the two guitars.

Check out their web site: http://www.abouttess.net/top.html




If you like Progressive rock and weird rhythms, you won’t be disappointed in Haisuinonasa. They also remind me a little of Paatos’ music.

More on: https://soundcloud.com/haisuinonasa


Fox Capture Plan

Very interesting trio composed of piano, drums and contrabass. It’s a fusion of jazz, electro and rock. Something for everyone.



An all-female math-rock band… Just awesome. Very good music.


Kinoko Teikoku

Ready for some original sound? Well they defined their music as shoegazing/dream pop. I really appreciate their style and the variety of music they have. Their name means “Mushroom Empire” by the way.



Bonus: Ra:in

Why stop at 7? Here’s a band that I’ve been listening for very long time. It’s progressive rock with a classic/vintage sound. I always feel that their music brings me to the old times of progressive music…


This is just my little list of some Japanese bands. Feel free to comment if you want to add some more!