Plastics (band)

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OriginTokyo, Japan
GenresNew wave, post-punk, synthpop
Years active1976–1981
LabelsRough Trade
Island (UK)
Victor Musical Industries, Inc
Associated actsMelon
Tycoon Tosh
Group of Gods
Love T.K.O
Major Force
Hajime Tachibana & the Low Powers
Past membersChica Sato
Toshio Nakanishi
Hajime Tachibana
Masahide Sakuma
Takemi Shima
Gota Yashiki

Plastics, or The Plastics, were a short-lived Japanese new wave music group prominent in the late 1970s and early 1980s.[1] Their music was a major influence on Japanese pop music and their songs have been covered by many bands, most notably Polysics, Pizzicato Five, and Stereo Total.

Perhaps their greatest exposure came from their appearance on the late night comedy show SCTV on NBC performing "Top Secret Man". In September 2007, Rolling Stone Japan rated their debut album Welcome Plastics at No. 19 on their list of the "100 Greatest Japanese Rock Albums of All Time".[2]

Stereo Total's cover of their song "I Love You, Oh No" (Stereo Total changed the title slightly, to "I Love You Ono") was used in television commercials for Sony Ericsson in Europe around 2006 and by Dell Computers in the USA in 2009.[3]


The bands Talking Heads, The B-52's and Devo were all big fans of Plastics and were instrumental in getting their albums released in the United States. Their mainstream exposure began when Toshio Nakanishi designed a tour program book for Talking Heads and slipped David Byrne a tape of Plastics demos. Byrne promptly sent it to the B-52's' manager who offered to represent them internationally.[citation needed]

The band used the Roland CR-68 and CR-78 drum machines for their early albums.[4][1] In 1980, member Masahide Sakuma (1952–2014) had some input on the Roland TR-808's development with Roland. When its development was complete, the Plastics had the first TR-808 model, used for their 1981 album Welcome Back.[4]


  • Chica Sato (佐藤 チカ) – vocal, synth drums
  • Toshio Nakanishi (中西 俊夫) – vocal, guitar & percussion; died 25 February 2017
  • Hajime Tachibana (立花  (ハジメ)) – guitar & vocal
  • Masahide Sakuma (佐久間 正英) – keyboards, guitar & bass programming; died 16 February 2014
  • Takemi Shima (島 武実) – rhythm box



  • Welcome Plastics (1979)
  • Origato Plastico (1980)
  • Welcome Back (1981) Re-recorded versions. Also known as Plastics. Originally came with a 7" picture flexi disc of their version of the Monkees hit "Last Train to Clarksville and Japanese b-side "Pate"."
  • Forever Plastico (1988) Contains Welcome Plastics and selected tracks from Origato Plastico.
  • All Across the USA 80 Live (1997) Recorded at Irving Plaza, New York, Aug 30th 1980 and Whisky A Go Go, Los Angeles, April 23, 1980.
  • Origato25 (2005) 2-disc greatest hits with 4 rare/new tracks
  • "A" (2018) Live recording of the band's final reunion


  • "Copy" / "Robot" (UK 1979) Early recordings
  • "Top Secret Man" / "Delicious" (Japan 1980)
  • "Good" / "Pate" (Japan 1980) Non-album b-side.
  • "Peace" / "Desolate" (Japan 1980)
  • "Diamond Head" / "Peace" (UK 1981) Flexi-disc promo. Re-recorded versions.
  • "Last Train to Clarksville" (UK 1981) One-sided limited edition. Re-recorded version.


  • "Diamond Head (Long Version)" / "Robot" / "Top Secret Man" / "Peace (USA 1981)" 12" promo featuring re-recorded versions.

Compilation appearances[edit]

  • Downtown '81 Soundtrack (2001) Track: "Copy" (early single version).
  • Techno Pop (2004) Track: "Pate," b-side of "Good" 7" single (1980).



  1. ^ a b Marx, W. David. "The Plastics and Copy Anxiety". Neojaponisme. Retrieved 9 April 2016. originally issue #4 Audimat (in French).
  2. ^ "English translation and summary of the Rolling Stone Japan article". Retrieved 2011-12-11.
  3. ^ Discovery Dell TV Commercial Ad
  4. ^ a b Masahide Sakuma, ROLAND TR-808の記憶, April 5, 2012

External links[edit]