Founded in 2001, the Nagano-orginal Ogre You Asshole now play as a 4 pieces band with Manabu Deto (Vo./Gt.), Kei Mabuchi (Gt.), Takashi Katsuura (Drs.) and Takashi Shimizu (Ba.). Picking up their hardcore name from a drunk encounter, yet appearing in the mainstream scene for several years as an indie-rock band, OYA acquire a range of labels: from AOR, soul, psychedelic and progressive rock, to post-punk and Krautrock. When you first come across OYA, you may be confused what they really are. However, if you are willing to dive deep into, you will discover the constant core of them: introspection with its resulting melancholy.
The name Modest Mouse is inevitable, though OYA claim that they have never intended to imitate anyone or gained inspiration from any particular genre, nor band. Nevertheless, they are considered in their earlier era, as the ‘MM of Japan’. This close connection of them is due to their apparent American indie-rock style back then. And the famous story: the kinky band name was actually given by Eric Judy, former bassist of Modest Mouse, who was then drunk during their Japan tour and encountered with OYA's founder drummer, Nishi Arata.
‘We were playing in that sort of vein when we started, but from about 2011 we absorbed elements from the 1960s and ’70s’ psychedelic, soul and AOR.’ Deto said during an interview back in 2016, ‘Our sound now is an integration of all these things we listen to.’ Apart from the mentioned, Krautrock bands such as Can are also a key influence.
OYA corporate with Ishihara You (Producer) and Nakamura Souichiro (Sound Engineer) since early on. The duo of them also maintains long-term partnerships with Yura Yura Teikoku, Shintaro Sakamoto, and Boris. In their long enough discography, the latest ones include the interesting EP ‘Crossword/Lost, Sigh, Days - James McNew Remixes’. It’s clear enough in its title that it’s a joint work feature James Mcnew, Bassist of Yo La Tengo, remixing two of their songs. It perfectly fits their consistent idea, that they never fear of exploring the new boundary of their music.
OYA has always strived for more imaginative combinations in their recordings. Nonetheless, they insist to remain a 4-piece band when playing live. For the band, lives and studio recordings are two distinctive yet equally significant tasks. In live performance, they're more like a ‘traditional’ rock band, each live performance of them is non-replicable since they reinterpret the existing framework and fashion new communications every time on stage, and this brings them surprises and vigorous inspirations.
This year in May, OYA will come to China for the very first time. You all are invited to Melt in Someone’s dream with them together.