Atarashii Gakko Brings a Fresh Sound to J-Pop during Their Performance at Head in the Clouds Thoughts+Photos: Atarashii Gakko! at 88rising's Head In The Clouds 8/21/22
LOS ANGELES, CA–
“…One of the biggest highlights of the festival was Atarashii Gakko!– a unique and eccentric Japanese quartet. Comprised of four members, Suzuka, Mizyu, Kanon, and Rin, the group debuted in 2017 with “Dokubana,” and they’ve found continued success internationally with 88rising.
The concept and message behind the group are extremely interesting. Atarashii Gakko roughly translates to “new school leaders.” While their costumes reference the country’s rigid conformity, their loud, disruptive music, powerful dance moves, and authentic personalities are anything but. Taking influences from hip-hop and other Western forms of music, they’ve been able to spread Japanese culture in their own signature style– making videos about the Japanese subway system, bento boxes, and new year’s traditions.
I saw Atarashii Gakko perform at last year’s festival, and while I enjoyed it, their set this year blew their last performance out of the water. I love how vibrant the quartet’s style is– it’s unique, new-school, yet retro all at the same time. They performed many of their hits, including “NAINAINAI” and “Woo! Go!” but my personal favorite song was “CANDY” because of its house influences. There were many OG fans that brought pineapples and umbrellas, but the group definitely gained many new supporters because of their dynamic and infectious energy. The young ladies of Atarashii Gakko are definitely the ideal youth ambassadors of modern Japan, and I can’t wait to see how their style evolves…”