Daily discovery: Okamotos from Japan brings the classic rock spirit into the modern world on “Sprite”


Sho Okamoto of Japanese rock band Okamotos has been writing songs since signing the band in 2010… but it was only relatively recently that he began to delve into the process with more artistic intent than ever before.

“We’re not the kind of band that has some kind of deep message or lesson behind every song – we play music because we love music – so it’s always hard to decide where to land when we’re writing,” the 30-year-old explained. But when Sho went to guitarist Koki Okamoto (the band uses the same last name to pay homage to Japanese artist Taro Okamoto and punk legends the Ramones), the two decided to attempt to write about the single thing they are sure of: “We love our music,” said Sho, “so we just sang that truth.”

The end result was the band’s latest single, “Sprite,” an alternative rock ode to their passion for creating music together. The single precedes the band’s new full LP: KNOW O released on September 29 via Ariola Japan (Sony Music Japan).

You see, “Sprite” was born out of conversations and planning on the part of Koki and Sho, but in the past Okamoto relied on an older, more traditional method of songwriting. “We are a rock band inspired by classic rock legends like the Rolling Stones, The Who, the Ramones and the Stooges,” Sho explained. “So we used to emulate their processes and write songs through our jam sessions. After doing several albums, I started to think that we shouldn’t just write based on the vibrations of our sessions and that we should be more deliberate, meticulous and attentive to every detail of our songs.

In the end, “Sprite” doesn’t quite embody the sounds of some of Okamotos’ heroes, but it does. Is embrace the rock’n’roll spirit… right down to the actual playing of the parties. “Basically we just want to feel good playing together,” Sho said. “Even though the melody and lyrics are good, if we don’t like playing it together, the song just won’t work for us. However, in this world of “post-desktop music”, I think this emphasis on “playability” – the “fun” of music for the performer – is increasingly rare. The four of us love the energy of live music and how clearly a lot of our idols were having fun when they performed, and we want to bring that energy to 2021. ”

Okamotos’ new album KNOW O was released on September 29 – listen to the single “Sprite” below:

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