Julian Cope’s Krautrocksampler is one of my all-time favourite music books, an expert guide to the psychedelic jungle of German rock from 1968–1975. (And it seems to be out of print. Damn.) Now he’s written a follow-up.

Julian Cope, eccentric and visionary rock musician, hip archaeologist and one time frontman of Teardrop Explodes, follows the runaway underground success of Krautrocksampler, a cult deconstruction of German rock music, with Japrocksampler. Japrocksampler is a short history of Japanese youth culture in the post-war years. It explores the clash between traditional, conservative Japanese values and the wild rock and roll renegades of the 1960s and 70s, telling the tale of six seminal groups of artists in Japanese post-war culture, from itinerant art-house poets to violent refusenik rock groups with a penchant for plane hijacking. Cope tours regularly and has just brought out a new album, Dark Orgasm. His website, Head Heritage, is widely acknowledged as containing some of the most entertaining and insightful album reviews on the web. Julian’s fans (Copeheads) as well as the generally interested reader will lap up this take on the Jap Rock phenomenon.

Via Arthur.

See also:
Les Rallizes Denudes
Keiji Haino / Fushitsusha
High Rise
PSF Records
Acid Mothers Temple Soul Collective | AMT concerts at the Internet Archive

Previously on { feuilleton }
Chrome: Perfumed Metal
Barney Bubbles: artist and designer
Metabolist: Goatmanauts, Drömm-heads and the Zuehl Axis
The art of Shinro Ohtake
Maximum heaviosity

4 thoughts on “Japrocksampler”

  1. Hi John,

    This is Sean, often on Eddie Campbell’s blog (and fellow Scots comic book creator). The guy who started the Borges bit there.

    Interesting book on Japan by Cope. Will check it out. i live in Japan and 60’s music and culture is keen interest of mine.

    One thing more: if you ever feel like making a jab at the perhaps hopeless task of making some illustrated/comic book versions of Borges’ stories, then, let do it together. Hmmm, lost in the labyrinth.


  2. Hi Sean. Cope’s book isn’t out until September but you can get a flavour of it from some of the writings on his site. His enthusiasm is very infectious even when I don’t always agree with his opinions.

    That’s good of you to offer with the Borges but since doing the Lovecraft stuff I’ve resolved not to do any more adaptations if I can help it. It’s great to try and honour something you enjoy but I found that the process tends to destroy the story since you have to pull it apart. Designing a Borges collection would be a different matter but then I doubt anyone would let me do that for now.

    Having said that, it’s good to see you’re giving Lafcadio Hearn some attention. I love Kobayashi’s Kwaidan (an adaptation!).

  3. John

    Thanks for the tip-off! Krautrocksampler is one of the great rock books of all time, highly informative and throbbing with a genuine enthusiasm for the subject matter.
    It’s also very funny (see Cope’s re-telling of his grandfather’s response to ‘Phallus Dei’).
    Cope’s taken a lot of stick over the years and much of it is unjustified. He recognises that being a ‘prat’ is a key component of the rock world and, as he himself advises: “Stay true to your chosen metaphor.”
    Japrocksampler promises to be one of the books of the year, least of all for the excellent cover image. It’s on my Xmas list.

  4. Yeah, I’m looking forward to this one. Krautrocksampler didn’t tell me much I didn’t know already about the music since I’d spent about 15 years collecting the stuff. The Japanese rock scene hasn’t been as easy to explore so a book like this is essential.

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