THE JUICY FRUITS – LOVE IS A BENCH SEAT [KOI WA BENCH SEAT] (1980)

lyrics by HARUO CHIKADA | music by YUJI OKIYAMA

The first in a three-part saga detailing a woman’s frustration with the fact that the guy she’s seeing doesn’t have a bench seat in his car. If you need a reminder of what that is: you know how most modern cars have two separate seats in the front? A bench seat is like in old cars, when there’s just a large seat with no divider that sits two. More than a lot of other Juicy Fruits songs, “Love is a Bench Seat” has a sort of harder edge to it in terms of the guitar and rhythm section – this edge is counteracted by the spoken-word bits, but it’s still an interesting mix.

Translation and notes are under the cut:

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THE JUICY FRUITS – JENNY IN A BAD MOOD [JENNY WA GOKIGEN NANAME] (1980)

lyrics by YUJI OKIYAMA
music by HARUO CHIKADA

Famously covered by Perfume on multiple occasions during live shows and as a B-side to the “Sweet Donuts” single, this track is a pretty fine example of early-80s new wave-y J-Pop. The band had a number of other hits during the period, but this is generally considered to be one of their biggest. They’re a bit kitschy and not really respected by music historians as far as I can tell, but I’ve always been a fan.

Translations and explanations are under the cut:

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