Ash Frozen in Time
Ash celebrated their 20th anniversary three years ago. Their easily biggest hit (and what really got the crowd going crazy at the Red Marquee this afternoon) is Kung Fu, which came out 19 years ago. Since then, they’ve released a number of albumsーand it has brought them to Fuji Rock no less than four times before this latest stint. And yet, 20 years on, they sound exactly the same. Well, not exactly. That would be a lie. For better or worse (allow me to suggest worse), Ash remains very… well, “Ash”. They’ve kept their signature sound and have only made a few tweaks over the years. An hour show and the only distinct tracks I can remember are Kung Fu (of course), Goldfinger, and Free (from the new album KABLAMO!)… The rest are an indistinct blur; an itch at the back of my mind that can’t be scratched. I’ve heard the songs before, and yet… haven’t.
I don’t know about anyone else, but I feel uncomfortable hearing something by an old band that sounds just like what they did 20 years ago, but isn’t. They’ve grown up, but not grown out of their old style. It was like watching a high school band that traveled back in time to play their prom at a better level they could as teenie boppers.
Now, it’s debatable whether I should be more forgiving, or Japan should be less so of bands and artists that live beyond their best before date (I was going to name names, but I won’tーthey know who they are), but either way some growing up before the next Fuji Rock Fest couldn’t hurt.
Jack Names the Planets
A Life Less Ordinary
Go! Fight! Win!
Girl from Mars
Burn Baby Burn
Photo by Izumi Kumazawa / Text by Lisa Wallin
Posted on 2015.7.24 20:05
Posted on 2015.7.26 02:20