Photo by Masahiro Saito
Around for the past 27 years, Denki Groove have been making music together longer than a fair share of the festival-goers at Fujirock have been alive. Known for their energetic and often goofy blend of synth-pop, breakbeat and techno, members Takkyu Ishino and Pierre Taki had their work cut out for them, closing out the main stage of the festival on Sunday night.
To the unschooled, Denki Groove are just two middle-aged men in matching bowling shirts who shout out nonsense lyrics over high-energy beats, dance like your dad does, and pull goofy faces. To fans who know Denki Groove — well, ok; They’re pretty much just as I described, but that’s why they’re so fun. Pumping the cheese-level up to expected highs, Taki, who resembles a tipsy 40-something salaryman awkwardly doing karaoke in front of 10,000 people struts around the stage, while Ishino mostly minds the decks.
They had the crowds singing and dancing crazily to such hits as “Niji” and “Baby’s On Fire”. In their youth, the goofiness of their act had touches of cool, which their music still manages to retain, but their appearance at Fujirock deliberately plays toward a tongue-in-cheek full-on wackiness. This isn’t a bad thing, but rather adds to the fun that Denki Groove brings. They showed young Fujirock crowds that trying to look cool all the time can be tiring; That sometimes you need to give in to the goofiness and go crazy.