21st September 2023 7:30 pm - 11:30 pm Ramsgate Music Hall - CT11 8NJ

We’re delighted to welcome US lo-fi legends Half Japanese to Ramsgate on Thursday 21st September!

One of the most unique alternative rock bands in history, with unrivalled enthusiasm and thirst for creation. Their way of performing remains a treat, and we can’t wait to see them up close and personal…

“More slick balladry and effervescent power pop, shot through with the off kilter enthusiasm and motivational pleasantries we so love from them” – Music OMH 

While they never strictly followed the fast-and-loud musical template of punk rock, few of punk’s founding fathers could have anticipated the extreme to which Half Japanese took the music’s D.I.Y. ethos. Founded by brothers Jad and David Fair, Half Japanese were quite likely the most amateurish rock band to make a record since the Shaggs, especially in their early years, all but ignoring musical basics like chords, rhythms, and melody. However, the brothers made that approach into a guiding aesthetic.

Beginning in the mid-’70s, Half Japanese‘s chaotic kind of free expression, with Jad Fair expounding on romantic frustration and horror movies while a shifting cast of musicians kicked up a ruckus behind him, made them the sort of band destined to have a cult following without any sort of mainstream recognition. Over time, however, that cult came to include the likes of Penn JilletteJello BiafraKurt Cobain, and Yo La Tengo, and the band released a steady stream of eccentric but beguiling albums throughout the ’80s and ’90s that made them respected elder statesmen of the underground rock community.

Half Japanese‘s proponents saw them as the epitome of a pure, unbridled enthusiasm for rock & roll, the ultimate expression of punk’s dictum that rock should be accessible to anyone who wanted to pick up an instrument and play. Detractors found them gratingly noisy, borderline unlistenable, and too self-conscious and willful about their naïveté. Early on, with less outside influence, their work was more chaotic and cathartic; as time passed, David Fair became a sporadic contributor, and the prolific Jad built a core of semi-regular backing musicians who brought a rudimentary sense of songcraft to the proceedings.

“As vibrant and essential as ever”Louder Than War 

“Travers(ing) through the world of celebrity, perils and savage beasts. Nice and grungy - Dinosaur Jr., Guided By Voices, that sort of vibe” – Norman Records