Today I’m bringing you our first “Worldwide Wednesday” post where we’ll try to bring some international flavors to the table. In this post, I’m focusing on meteorite-flo…I’m sorry, better known as m-flo, a Japanese hip-hop group consisting of two members, Verbal (the emcee) and Taku Takahashi (the DJ). Originally the band was comprised of three members, the two prior mentioned artists, and Lisa (the vocalist). Lisa later left the band in 2002 to pursue a solo career but Verbal and DJ Taku kept strong, releasing their infamous m-flo loves series. A series of collaborative projects with other artists, lending m-flo the one piece they lost with the departure of Lisa, smooth vocals to go with Verbal’s rhymes and Taku’s beats. During that span, they worked with the likes of Crystal Kay, BoA, Chemistry, Double, Koda Kumi, Bonnie Pink, etc.
When I first heard anything by the group, I didn’t even realize it. I remember hearing a version of “Distance” originally by Utada Hikaru that had been mixed by m-flo. At that time however, I just wasn’t paying much attention to who was remixing or who was featured in songs that I liked. Man things have changed. Anyways, one night during my sophomore year in high school, I was with my good friend Morgan, who tells me to check out a video by this group called m-flo. He streamed the video on his computer – had to stream, couldn’t YouTube anything just yet. The video was “Miss You” featuring melody. & Ryohei off of their「ASTROMANTIC」album. The song was rather catchy, so I “obtained” the song. As Alex would say, “Don’t judge me!” lol. After listening to their prior albums, 「EXPO EXPO」and 「PLANET SHINING」, I grew to become an m-flo fan. One thing to note is that m-flo is VERY famous for releasing remixes upon remixes of the same song, sometimes bringing songs from their earlier years back into play with updated remixes or allowing other artists to sample and then cut their songs into new renditions. Literally, the group has five studio albums and just as many remix albums. Yes, whole albums that were created using just remixes of their own music.
I followed m-flo throughout high school and college, and then began to see that they were gaining popularity in the US. They’ve worked with Kanye West, Jay-Z, Pharrell, Lupe Fiasco, and others on various projects. Of the two, Verbal has certainly gained a larger following in the US as he’s collabed with many American artists and for a period, joined the group the Teriyaki Boys under the Def Jam label – yes THAT group that became famous for their song “Tokyo Drift” from the movie, “The Fast and the Furious: Tokyo Drift”.
Take a listen to m-flo. You’ll see that they have a very unique sound. They collaborate with so many artists and even use sounds, rhythms, and samples from other non-Japanese artists. I’ve heard them use old Spanish samples and have even thrown in some bhangra into two tracks…then again, who hasn’t right? These guys have grown in their careers and as individual artists. I’m still waiting for another album, talks of Lisa rejoining the group swirl around, but who knows. Regardless, I hope that when Alex and I look back at what we’ve done with Fresh From Birth, we are able to cherish all the memories and friendships made. Oh, and if we can collab with some famous artists, dance crews, producers, clothing lines, and others…we will certainly take that too 😉
Hope you enjoy some of their music, I’m sure I’ll pull some more m-flo out in the future…you can be sure of that!!
Giancarlo…I mean, G.
m-flo loves melody. & Ryohei / miss you
m-flo loves YOSHIKA / let go
m-flo loves BONNIE PINK / Love Song
m-flo loves Crystal Kay / gET oN! – ugly duckling remix –
m-flo loves Crystal Kay / REEEWIND!
m-flo / Deep Within
This one is kinda Spoken Word-ish ^_^