A shimmering brew of extraterrestrial dub reggae and club music influences.
Audio Active debuted in the UK with On-U Sound in 1994, with the Sherwood produced album, Tokyo Space Cowboys. The album went to No.14 in the UK indie album charts and the single “Free The Marijuana” went to No.1 in NME magazine DJ chart. “Free the Marijuana” also drew heavy radio play in Australia, being released around the time the marijuana laws were up for revision.
Using a mix of programming and live instrumentation Audio Active created a dense, dub-inspired world of sound. References to outer space and time travel interests fostered by sci-fi films and animated TV shows like Time Bokan abound in their English lyrics.
However, it’s their love of the ‘erb that is impossible to ignore and sets them apart on the Japanese music scene, where controversy is anathema. Titles such as “Weed Specialist”, “Kick The Bong Around”, “Psycho Buds”, and the “Hempire Strikes Back” are just some of the many tributes to their favourite medicine contained in their records.
The band have amongst their influences Jimi Hendrix, Sun Ra, Fela Kuti and Lee Perry and they have collaborated and done countless remixes, for artists as diverse as Haruomi Hosono (Yellow Magic Orchestra), Asian Dub Foundation and Carl Douglas.
Audio Active has toured Europe six times, earning a reputation as a fantastic live band. Appearances include Glastonbury, Big Day Out, Roskilde and other major festival dates, as well as the States, various Asian cities, and performing in a total of sixteen foreign countries.
In their home country of Japan, the band are acknowledged for their reputation as innovators and have played major festivals, including Fuji Rock and the Tibetan Freedom Festival.
Audio Active’s back catalogue is available via our good friends at Beat Records.