Former Megadeth guitarist Marty Friedman is set to drop his third album of J-pop covers, called TOKYO JUKEBOX 3, on Oct. 21.
The album is the follow-up to his previous collection from 9 years ago, and features a wide variety of pop songs both classic and current. The new set includes contemporary numbers such as LiSA’s powerful long-running hit “Gurenge” and Official HIGE DANdism’s “Shukumei,” along with DA PUMP’s recent comeback dance track “U.S.A.,” End of the World’s poignant ballad “Sazanka,” and the pioneering vocaloid hit “Senbonzakura feat. Hatsune Miku.” Some throwback J-pop hits from the ‘90s are included in the playlist as well, such as the late ZARD’s “Makenaide” and Every Little Thing’s “Time goes by.”
Friedman’s renditions of these songs feature his virtuoso heavy-metal shredding while also showcasing his prowess as composer and music producer. Fans can get a taste of the album in a short-but-sweet teaser of the Japan-based guitar hero slaying “Gurenge,” in which the popular anime opener is given a jaw-droppingly complex twist.
The collection’s cover art features Friedman decked up in a striking kimono-like outfit with kabuki-inspired makeup, with his signature long curls done up in an impressive coiffure, visualizing his unique brand of East-meets-West expressed sonically in the 12-song set.