By Tim Wu on May 24, 2007 in Blog

I couldn’t find much time at Narita airport to do an update, so alas, the final post for my Japan trip is being done back in LA.

One of favorite places to go in Japan is definitely Shibuya; all the lights and gigantic tv screens makes it feel like Times Square, only cleaner.

The pink and blue neon sign in the background is for HMV, probably Tokyo’s largest media chain, comparable to Virgin in New York, selling music and movies from around the world.

HMV stands for “His Master’s Voice”… sounds kinda totalitarian if you ask me. Good thing they stuck to the acronym… like KFC.

Unlike music stores in America (or those that I’ve been to anyway), many Japanese music stores have their own sections for indie music.

I didn’t snap a picture of it, but right as you walk into the store, you see a rack that has the current top 10. Of what chart, I have no idea, but it does make deciding easier. I picked up a compilation album for a group called Mr.Children (no space), which has actually been around since 1987. Throughout my trip I had their name all over the place, on the subway, on TV, etc, so I was glad to see they has just released a greatest hits album, so to speak, called B-Side.

What I particularly like about them is that their music spans all genres, rap, rock, blues, even electronica, which is rare when for what could be technically classified as a boy band (except they’ve gotten much older since their start… and man band just sounds weird.) B-Side is a great album to pick up if you ever get the chance to, whether it be in stores or online.

Of course, around Shibuya you’ll still find the lesser known artists busking outside of subway stations or on any street corner that can manage the space.

These guys probably had the most elaborate set-up I had seen to date, with a projector and everything. They were reminiscent of a cross between Linkin Park and System of a Down, which I liked, so I picked up their album.

Shibuya, like pretty much any city in Tokyo, has several arcades, and this drum game it by far the greatest game ever made… EVER. They sell it in stores (with a smaller version of the drum, of course), but it can’t play on American playstation 2′s, which sucks major balls.

Check it out, London Police in Japan, woot.

Here’s a wide shot of just a small part of Shibuya.

And the same place at day time. There are a lot less people…so to speak, but it’s still cool.

Cuz you can see Asian Bruce Willis, HELL YEAH.

As usual, more picture of Shibuya can be found on my Facebook:

And for those of you who know the meaning of televised awesome, here’s something for you~


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