Palladium Boots are the hottest thing to be seen on your feet with since the £5 plimsole evasion of East London. Now, the footwear company that was originally an aviation tyre manufacturer ahead of WWII, has created five mini-documentaries with Pharrell Williams. The series sees Pharrell visit Japan’s creative capital, Tokyo, post the atrocities of 3/11 and star in some beautifully shot and moving videos entitled, ‘Tokyo Rising’.

Tokyo is an awe-inspiring city, its cultural impact around the world is matched by the technological advances that have come from the diverse and sometimes crazy city. Tokyo is a hub of creativity, from the Harajuku girls to the city slickers in back street sushi restaurants to the design and architectural geniuses that leave some of the Western world looking like they are still in the days of black and white tellys. Tokyo suffered in ways some of us will never know after 3/11 and Palladium and Williams take a peek into how the resilient folk of Japan are recovering and motoring ahead in the only way they know how – by breathing creative life back to the city.

The series explores the creative forces that have been a constant source of inspiration for the N.E.R.D musician throughout his many projects. Pharrell has been a great supporter of relief efforts for the Japanese citizens affected by the incidents of 3/11 and he jumped at the chance to visit the metropolis that has had such an impact upon him as an artist and as an individual as this beloved city faces a new reality after the tragedy of 3/11.

Below is the entire series, enjoy and soak up some of that great Japanese spirit… god knows London needs some of the smiling happy faces that Tokyo has, this town can be pretty miserable with the moody faces walking down the streets – smile and be happy, Tokyo style.

Episode 1 – Pharrell’s return to Tokyo

Pharrell meets up with the rapper Verbal to discuss the effect of 3/11 on the people of Tokyo and shares his love with the city he calls his second home.


Episode 2 – Under and Above Ground

Pharrell continues his exploration of Tokyo with Trippple Nippples vocalist Yuka Uchida who takes him to the G-Cans Project, a hidden 6km underground cavern designed to fill up with water when the rivers flood during natural disasters.


Episode 3 – Art in Flux

Mitsu 3331 is a place that’s like a community centre for artists by artists, a platform to share different creativity from fashion to dance. Pharrell goes to see the art pieces inspired by 3/11 including a piece that is made up of documentation by the victims, not artists.


Episode 4 – The Remix Culture

We meet a variety of creatives who discuss the urge that the Japanese people had to become westernised after the war, but how this unique culture put their own spin on it especially after the 3/11 disaster. Pharrell discovers the amazing Kita-Kore, championing D-I-Y culture from a visually spectacular hub.


Episode 5 – Trippple Nippples Show

We watch the crazy and surreal Trippple Nippples show from The Trump room, decorated with flashing lights and covered in mirrors before hearing from all the contributors to the series and their conclusions on how Tokyo will move forward into the future.


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