Whatever the genre, Japanese fans don’t do things by halves.
Spearheaded by Yokohama’s Mighty Crown sound system, the country’s dancehall scene is one of Japan’s weirdest subculture success stories. Imported as a niche underground interest in the ’90s, the Jamaican sound has become a huge crowd-puller, with stadium-sized gigs now attracting thousands of obsessive fans who see dancehall as a lifestyle as much as a genre.
As part of its Scene Unseen project, audio specialist Bose has unveiled a short documentary examining Japan’s homegrown dancehall pioneers, including the team behind Mighty Crown and dancer Batty Bom Bom, a previous winner of the annual Dancehall Queen competition. Dancehall in Japan is the first of three features directed by British duo Edward Lovelace and James Hall (collectively known as D.A.R.Y.L) exploring the stories behind the sound and discovering music scenes where you’d least expect them – the second episode focuses on Indie in Mexico (out on August 1), while the final part looks at Electronic in India (out August 15).
To accompany the series, Bose is also presenting Layers of Sound, visualisations of music by artists and designers, and Music Maps, a series of infographics created using data from Spotify. Interact with the Scene Unseen project using the hashtag #ListenForYourself and keep an eye out for the next two instalments of the trilogy on the dedicated Tumblr.