14 Songs, 49 Minutes


About illion

Illion was the solo project of Radwimps vocalist Yojiro Noda. Like his main band, it exhibited a peculiarly Japanese sensibility, but was quite different musically. While Radwimps plied a technical, angular, often abrasive style of indie rock, Illion had a unique, mischievous sound which combined indie folk, art rock, and chamber pop elements with electronic flourishes. Noda had long harbored a desire to perform outside Japan, but his bandmates were not particularly interested, despite the band's relative global popularity. Having lived in the United States for three years as a young boy, Noda was fairly proficient in English. He decided to go straight for the global market with his solo project, writing most of the songs for his debut album in English and launching it in the United Kingdom. The album, Ubu, released in 2013, sold a couple thousand copies there, and peaked at number seven in the Oricon album chart upon its subsequent release in Japan, where it was critically well-received. It was also issued in a few other European countries. Illion played only a handful of live gigs; his debut performance was at the Shepherd's Bush Empire in London, his second at the Indra club in Hamburg. His wanderlust at least temporarily sated, Noda swiftly returned to Radwimps, who released their seventh album later that same year. A new Illion single, "Water Lily," dropped in 2016, heralding his sophomore album P.Y.L., which was released later that year alongside another new Radwimps full-length. The single marked quite a departure from the style of Ubu, with lyrics in Japanese and a largely electronic sound that strongly recalled the solo experiments of Kei from Kannivalism. ~ John D. Buchanan

Yokohama, Japan



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