Nakanomori BAND (中ノ森BAND) was an all-girl Japanese pop/rock band formed in 2004. The band was fronted by Ayako Nakanomori (vocals/guitar) who was the runner-up in the Kyushu-Okinawa Starlight Audition in 2000. The other members were Tomoe (guitar), Shinamon (Keyboards), Yucco (Bass), and Cheeta (Drums). Tomoe left the band in 2005 and they continued on as a foursome. Nakanomori BAND is recommended for fans of American all-girl pop/rock bands such as The Veronicas (circa 2005), Everlife (circa 2007), KSM, etc.

Selected discography:

Oh My Darlin’ ~Girls Having Fun~ (2006). 14 tracks. Choice cuts: “Whatever”, “Raspberry Pie”, “Pink Monster”, “Secret Pool”, ” Love♡Control”. Other good cuts: “Oh My Darlin'”, “TOY”, “Quicksand”, “Jishaku”, “Sora”, “Satellite”, “Renai Express”, “new world”. The rest: “smile&wild”. Choice B-sides: “Datsumannera”, “Sentimental Place”, “Omoi no Mama ni”.

Do The Rock (2006). 16 tracks. Choice cuts: “i Need Love”, “Fly High”, “Tomorrow”. Other good cuts: “Seinaru Yoru no Shi”, “Polaris Piketora”, “Cannonball”, “Say Good Bye”, “remember me… (Acoustic Version)”, “Hana Monogatari”, “Basu Tei Komachi”, “Hey You!!”, “New Year Party”, “Wana”. The rest: “Kimi no Naka no”, “One☆Two☆Diving”, “Kisu Shite Hoshii (Tu-Tu-Tu)”. Choice B-sides: “Sayonara Bomber”, “remember me…”, “Tsuyogari Cupid”.

Electric Girl (2008). 14 tracks. Choice cuts: “Tabi e no Tobira”, “Kaze ni Naritai”, “Isobravo”, “Yuki”. Other good cuts: “One last tear”, “Ue o Muite”, “Day by Day ~Tadotta Ashiato ni~”, “Hoshi ni Natta Kimi e”, “Happy”, “Seesaw”, “Taiyou”, “99 Red Ballons”, “Electric Girl”. The rest: “Koi no Hanabi Shi”. Good B-sides: “Moon halo”, “Ningen Nante “, “Kakenukeru Kaze”, “One way Ticket”, “Pink Train”.

Note: “99 Red Ballons” [originally “99 Luftballoons”] is a cover of the 1983 hit by German new wave band Nena.

GIRLS ROCK BEST (2008). Best album.

Selected videos:

Band links: Generasia

In 2008, Ayako Nakanomori, along with Nakanomori BAND, appeared in the movie Kekkon shiyou yo. She starred as the musician daughter of a salaryman who was struggling to keep his family together. Nakanomori BAND disbanded later that year, and Ayako has since been pursuing a solo career. In 2011, Nakanomori joined the one-shot supergroup DAYBREAKERS.


My thoughts… The first Japanese rock bands that I embraced were BUCK-TICK and Dragon Ash. However, before I realized that I could get J-rock that wasn’t actually released in the U.S., I was listening to Puffy AmiYumi [aka PUFFY] who, in fact, had albums released here! Puffy AmiYumi were a successful Japanese pop/rock duo long before they were a cartoon (2004-06) on Cartoon Network! Anyway, their style of music led me to Nakanomori BAND whose punky pop/rocker “Whatever” and girl poppy “Raspberry Pie” became the first Japanese CD-singles that I ever purchased (via YesAsia)! The Japanese love singles! Nakanomori BAND stands apart from other J-pop because the very adorable Ayako Nakanomori sings in a deeper register (with the occasional squeak) than most Japanese female singers! In addition, her band’s music is very eclectic for J-pop with influences taken from pop, rock and even a little bit of punk – like the aforementioned Go-Go’s-esque “Whatever”! Oh, and here’s my favorite Nakanomori BAND CD cover art [because Ayako looks pretty bad-ass for a J-pop singer!] …


Read my original post on RCR (here).