Best album: An Cafe – Magnya Carta
Seriously fun album. Halfway this year I suddenly got really sick of all the dark/emo stuff and got really into An Cafe (mainly thanks to YAGAI DE NYAPPY in Tokyo). This album is just so much fun to listen to, and you can also clearly notice that their music is growing and getting better. This was, together with SID’s “play” album, one of the few releases I was -really- looking forward to this year.
Best live performance: DIR EN GREY – Inward Scream tour start 8/1
This concert was so absolutely amazing. No words can describe it. To begin with, it was already tons better than the concerts I went to in Europe. They played better, and the atmosphere was so much nicer. And it felt really special to hear all the new songs before they were released. This was definitely the best concert of 2006.
Goosebump moment: (Again) DIR EN GREY – Inward Scream tour start 8/1
Surprisingly good live performance: Both Dir en grey shows in Japan. Being used to their ‘crappy’ shows in Europe… This was much better!
Worst live performance: N/A
Surprising event: D’ERLANGER getting back together after 17 years..!
Best song: B’z – Monster
My Japanese host family is completely obsessed with B’z. So after I stayed there in the summer of 2005 I started to show more interest in B’z. This year I got really into them. “Monster” is just a seriously amazing song. I can’t wait til I can buy the album!
Best newly discovered band/artist: An Cafe, Panic Channel, D, LM.C
I didn’t actually discover An Cafe or Panic Channel, but I did ‘rediscover’ them. I’m also glad I discovered D. With all the crappy indies bands around lately, it was really great to hear some proper music. And LM.C is just awesome!
Four bands/artists that also deserved to be mentioned (in random order): Sid, Hyde, MIYAVI
2006 album top 10:
1. An Cafe – Magnya Carta
2. SID – play
3. B’z – Monster
4. Miyavi – MYV*POPS
5. Hyde – FAITH
6. Anna Tsuchiya – strip me?
7. Onmyouza – Inyo-Shugyoku
8. Weird Al Yankovic – Straight Outta Lynwood
9. Merry – Peepshow
10. Gazette – NIL