Who is Kamura Obscura

Kamura Obscura explores vocal experimentation, composition and improvisation incorporating enka, chanson and Japanese punk into original multi-instrumental music. 

Kamura Obscura are Atsuko Kamura (vocal, synth, fx) and Natalie Mason (strings, piano, accordion). Also it is performed as Atsuko Kamura's solo.

Atsuko Kamura

One of Tokyo's most emotive and inventive singers, part of the women’s liberation movement, giving birth to the first Japanese feminist punk band, Mizutama Shobodan (Polkadot Fire Brigade), Japanese agit-prop feminist pioneers. They toured Japan and released two albums, the second of which, Manten ni Akai Hanabira (Red Petals Full in the Sky) was produced by Fred Frith.

She joined UK based Japanese pop group Frank Chickens alongside Kazuko Hohki in 1988 and toured Europe, US, New Zealand, Australia, Canada, USSR and Japan. This group appeared in Kazuko's Karaoke Klub on Channel 4 TV in UK in which Kamura was hostess to Spike Milligan, also surviving Jimmy Saville, and performing in musical Club Monkey.

After decades of soaking up London underground rave, in 2002 she began working with Robert Storey (Orchestre Murphy) in a new group I am A Kamura (Simon King - guitar, Matt Armstrong - bass, and Paul May - drums). 

Other projects included vocal duo Honeymoons with Tenko, performing at the International Women's Music Festival in Montreal in 1988. They played with innovative New York improvisers such as Tom Cora. Their album "Laughing Myth", produced by Kenichi Takeda was released 1982.  Improvisation group, "Uzo Muzo", performed Strasbourg's Musica Festival in 1987. Kamura's hard rock project Yamaneko (Hiroshi Higo - bass, Boy - drums and Lapis - guitar) featured performances with John Zorn. And Anglo-Japanese jazz progressive rock band, Setsubun Bean Unit, (Gideon Jukes - tuba, Pete Flood - drums, Brendan Kelly - sax) who made an appearance in Sonar festival in Barcelona in 2007, whilst she has also worked with improvising rock trio Superstrings. As a solo improviser vocalist Kamura has performed with respected improvisers such as Lol Coxhill, Eddie Prévost, Clive Bell, Sylvia Hallett and Charles Haywood.

Natalie Mason

Birmingham-born classically trained, multi-instrumentalist and composer. Leader of an innovative music project, Multicultural Music Making and organiser of Club Integral Midlands Branch. With experience of living in South Africa she writes intricate instrumentals and surreal songs about times in Birmingham and beyond, while playing as many instruments as she can get a-hold of.

 

カムラアツコ

 

80年代、日本初のフェミニストばかりのパンクバンド「水玉消防団」(可夜、カムラ、天鼓、まなこ、宮本-san)で、ボーカリスト、ベーシストとして音楽活動開始。日本パンクシーンの担い手となる。

2枚のアルバムを発表。内「満点に赤い花びら」は、フレッド・フリスのプロデュース。

同時に天鼓との即興ボーカル・デュオ「ハネムーンズ」を結成。海外公演開始。

その後、英国に渡りポップグループ「フランクチキンズ」でホーキ・カズコとペアを組む。オーストラリアを始め、ニュージーランド、アメリカ、カナダ、ヨーロッパなどツアー。また、チャンネル4のテレビ番組、「Kazuko's Karaoke Klub」に出演。2000年より、エスニック系、民謡、即興を取り入れたバンド「I am a Kamura」でバンド活動再開。英日混合の民謡ジャズ・プログレバンド「Setsubun bean unit」で民謡を歌い、同時にボーカル即興にも新しい領域を開拓。

現在のプロジェクト「Kamura Obscura」では、エレクトロニクスを取り込み、反原発集会で歌う一方、ボーカルの即興セッション多数。

 

 

 

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