Ill Japonia: Iii

Catalogue: EM001
Label: Eastern Margins
Release Date: 
7 February 2020
Format: Digital

Typography: bod [包家巷]
Design: Anthony Ko

‘Ill’ is the stargazing debut EP from Ill Japonia, the frontman of cult Hackney-via-Japan noise-rock outfit, Bo Ningen. Ahead of a slot supporting Black MIDI on their UK & Ireland tour in February 2019, ‘Ill’ is the birth of a new sound mutating through (t)rap, shoegaze & pop in front of your eyes.

With takeovers forthcoming on NTS Radio, Worldwide FM & Internet Public Radio [and a music video premiere of the lead single, Sauna Mizuburo, on [AQNB / Tank Magazine], Ill Japonia is the leader of a new wave of deconstructed rap. The hybrid strains of ‘Ill’ are bound to send reverberations through global consciousness. 

Sung and screamed in English, Japanese and a self-invented language, ‘Ill’ is the sound of an artist crystallising their identity right in front of you. Drawing from a decade of influences being a ringleader of the global noise rock circuit as Bo Ningen’s frontman, ‘Ill’s aural landscape spans a vast panorama. ‘Sauna Mizuburo’ is the sonic equivalent of diving head first into an ice-cold plunge pool, whilst “Social Alien Riot’ is an anthem for the outcasts, with parts cobbled together from Grime’s icy textures and skittering enunciations combined with Shoegaze’s lurching momentum. 

箱庭’, featuring Roller Girl’s dulcet vocals, is the whispered mantra of a better tomorrow. ‘MIZEL’ is the euphoric soundtrack to the season finale of an Anime set in 2099 Tokyo: all arpeggiated dreams & strings piercing the skies. ‘Lounge Muzak’ rounds off the EP with an introspective tone, as Ill Japonia’s introspective lyrics draws upon the past for future resolve (‘覚悟’ (Kakugo): the act of bracing oneself with determination).   In an increasingly polarized world, music which confronts identity and culture head-on is more vital than ever. ‘Ill’ is a global rallying call for the aliens from Tokyo to Tottenham, Seoul to Stretham.