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“Goodbye” – Toe

During my first onesongtoday post I mentioned that I would be reviewing some music from a crazy island off the coast of China out in the pacific. Today is the day.

Toe is a wildly popular Japanese group whose music reeks of the intersection of traditional Japanese culture and uncut post-modernity. Traditional Japanese culture holds an understanding of the evanescence of time, an appreciation for the space between things, and a methodical obsession for seeking beauty and perfection in even the most infinitesimal. Post-modern culture transcends everyday experience, contends that finite, what is or what isn’t, what can or what cannot, is a non sequitur. Dubbed as “math-rock” and “post-rock”, Toe takes their music to the outer limits while managing to not stray very far at all.

Though I love ramen, donburi, and [insert typical American comment here], I can’t read Japanese and I have little patience for Google translate. As such, taken directly from Wikipedia, “Toe is composed of Kashikura Takashi on drums, Mino Takaaki on guitar, Yamane Satoshi on bass guitar, and Yamazaki Hirokazu on guitar. Toe has formally played with this line-up since the band’s inception in 2000. They are currently one of three bands on the indie label Machu Picchu, formed by the members of Toe.

The vast majority of the music is instrumental in nature and is also known for its melodic, clean guitar settings. Additionally, the compositions have repetition from typical rock motifs, but use very subtle changes in beat and rhythm to form a unique sound. The band has changed their sound over their musical tenure by incorporating acoustic guitars, rhodes piano, and vibraphones in their most recent releases.

The band tours regularly in Japan, and can most notably be compared to acts such as Pele and The Album Leaf.”

Guddobai or, “Goodbye Music”, is a contemplative, chill number off the album “For Long Tomorrow”. I have a feeling it warmed the crowd up nicely in their recent appearance at the Fuji Rock Festival as the opener to Radiohead.

My suggestion would be to crank your volume and be patient.

Lyrics here.

More about Toe here.

Goodbye (Album Version) - For Long Tomorrow