steering clear of the mainstream
since 2001

june 2010

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info opinion

Asobi Seksu

Self-Titled CD


Genres: indie pop, shoegazer, j-pop

Asobi Seksu
PO Box 3277
Long Island City, NY 11103

Apr 7 - 13 2003

Lots of people may label this J-Pop because Asobi Seksu's lead singer is Japanese and many of the songs have Japanese lyrics.  How disturbingly xenophobic.  Despite the occasional non-english word, Asobi Seksu's debut album should have no problem finding a place in the hearts of any number of anglophones.  The familiar rock and pop melodies can't be resisted, and the band's delicious guitar sound is one that many wannabe indie rock heroes can only hope to achieve.

"Walk on the Moon" is a fine example of Asobi Seksu's sound.  Delicate and beautiful, the female vocals glide over a pillow of chiming guitars, which turn into overdriven shoegazer-esque walls of sound for the chorus.  "It's Too Late," meanwhile, is the album's epic.  Starting off merely with a smooth, quiet pop atmosphere, the track gradually builds up to a powerful climax, only to slowly drop out again into a valley of calm guitar.  Dozens of shoegazer bands could be namechecked, but what's the point?  We slowly emerge from this subdued valley of guitar, gaining energy and power until the final minute, where everything goes haywire and gradually dissolves into mere remnants of supersonic noise.

Of course, those are just two of the eleven excellent songs on this album.  I won't give away the rest of these beautiful songs, though; you can discover them for yourself.


Matt Shimmer

[Vitals: 11 songs, distributed by CD Street, released 2002]