Monday, September 14, 2009


No, not Beck Hansen.... Or Glenn Beck. BECK: Mongolian Chop Squad!!! The story of some kid who, through a series of chance encounters, becomes a member of a legendary band called Beck (Mongolian Chop Squad is the American release name). It's a story of a group of people, nay friends or perhaps comrades who pull together to create a legendary sound that draws in people against the odds and in the face of the music industry. The day-to-day reality of high school and a part-time job contrast with the fast times on stage and vivid studio practices, or even pouring out his soul on the guitar in his room while his mother tells him to turn the volume down (Which he does, cause he's a good kid). The characters that bring him to his destination are varied and unexpected: The rapping ramen shop worker, the bassist who bounces from band to band, the eccentric ex-pro swimmer who teaches him guitar, and of course a laid back Japanese guy from America who lives at a fishing hole and has a mis-matched mutt of a dog named "Beck". The English dub isn't bad, and they even do a good job with the songs, but one of the big points throughout the story is that some characters speak Japanese and others speak English. So when everyone is speaking English and one guy say's "Ah, I don't speak English." in English.... It kinda breaks the mood. But, all the same, I really appreciate the work the English dub workers put into adapting the songs and near the end there's a slide show scene where the English flows really well for an American audience. Ah, and of course there's Maho, probably one of my favorite love interests in a show even when she does do stupid stuff, which I guess just makes her more realistic.

If you like rock, and you like stories about bands there's no reason not to see Beck. If you just generally like music and good slice-of-life stories make sure to check it out.

On a seperate note, it's ridiculously hard to get you hands on tracks from the show legitimately. Fortunately they're mostly on YouTube, but only for so long, and the OST is ridiculously expensive. The opening is pretty ridiculous, but at the same time it really captures that "Going for it" spirit. The rest of the songs are also generally good, but this is for sure my favorite song from the show: Full Moon Sways, gently in the breeze of one fine day. Full Moon Sways, smiling in my arms for all those years.

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