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Japan: Quiet Life (1979)


“Quiet Life” is the third studio album by Japan, an English new wave band formed in 1974 in Catford, South London.


The album was released in 1979 in Canada by Hansa and in Japan by Victor, and then released in other countries in 1980.

Before releasing this album, the band had made a transition from their earlier guitar-based, glam rock/funk-tinged style to the synth-pop style in the single “Life in Tokyo” (1979), which was a collaboration with Giorgio Moroder. After that, in this album, they established their distinctive artistic style of synth-pop, which is characterized by David Sylvian’s sticky vocals with his baritone voice and Mick Karn’s undulating fretless bass.

This album is a masterpiece of synth-pop with a European taste, like art rock such as Roxy Music and David Bowie’s “Low” (1977) . It can also be regarded as one of the earliest prototypes of the New Romantic.

The title track “Quiet Life” was released as a single in Japan in 1979, in Germany and the Netherlands in 1980, and in the UK in 1981. It peaked at number 19 on the UK Singles Chart.

“All Tomorrow’s Parties” is a cover of the song by the Velvet Underground and Nico. A remixed version of the song by Steve Nye was released as a single in 1983 after the band split, and peaked at number 38 on the UK Singles Chart.

Japan – Quiet Life – 1979