Sunday 11 January 2015

Art Bar Ten - R.I.P.

For the past year and a half, Call And Response Records has been working with our friends Gotal and Ralouf from Lo-shi to produce Tententen, a monthly collision of live music, DJs, art and moving pictures. The place we did this was Koenji's wonderful Art Bar Ten, a tiny little place that we sometimes had screaming at the edges of its cosy capacity, but which was always a generous and easygoing host for the event.

Unfortunately, thanks to the tenuous basis on which most music venues in Tokyo cling onto life, Ten has been forced to close (we don't think it was our fault!) Some of my best memories of the past couple of years have been connected to the little scene we had going around Ten, not to mention its more regular stock in trade of nightly jazz sessions with an always welcoming crowd of often amazingly talented musicians who were almost ridiculously tolerant of us punks, indie kids and noise freaks who kept invading their space.

While we could probably find a new venue to tolerate our whimsy, Tententen was, as the name suggests, intimately bound up with the venue. We are not killing the event, but we are putting it on hold, allowing us to take a break and focus on some other projects and events, reviving the event name on a more sporadic basis and maybe returning to regular events at a later date. Call And Response is now in its tenth year, so we have a busy schedule of events and releases planned, including a return of our own Telephone Club live event, so keep an eye on this space for more notifications.

Looking back over the time we did Tententen, I think we can be proud of the shows we did. Here's a rundown of all the acts who performed over the seventeen months the event ran:

  • Lo-shi
  • She Talks Silence
  • Servals
  • 人魂 (Hitodama)
  • Nevernevereverland
  • Mars & Eye
  • Fancy Numnum
  • Fallopian Disco Force
  • Mir
  • Jebiotto
  • group A
  • Abikyokan
  • うるせぇよ (Uruseeyo)
  • Communication Breakdown
  • Gloomy
  • N’toko
  • Umez
  • Voided By Geysers
  • Slowmarico
  • Zad Kokar
  • emulsion
  • Troglobytes
  • steel music
  • Kentaro Nagata
  • LIF
  • Under
  • Ultrafog
  • Tropical Death Metal
  • Compact Club
The past week I spent a lot of time at Ten eagerly snapping some memories of the place and its menagerie of jazz-freaks: