Saturday, May 26, 2007

Re-post: Hamster:

If most mainstream Japanese pop music (Morning Musume, Hamasaki Ayumi, etc.) could be compared to candy, then Chocolat's brand of j-pop would be considered ice cream. It's a sugary treat, but not so sweet as to induce rotting of the teeth. British rock, American pop, French groove, and J-pop all merge together here to produce a warm, organic bliss of an album that is cute, catchy, and done with class. The production here (by Tomoki Kanda) is really amazing, with lots of surprises. Bouncing ping-pong balls, chirping crickets, answering machines, and other odd little noises dot this power pop landscape. It's the kind of album that sounds great on the speakers and also yields new rewards when listened to on headphones.

Chocolat doesn't possess a very powerful voice, in fact, it's a bit thin and buried in the mix, but it fits the style of these songs and certainly fits the mood of the album. Every song is worthy of mention...but it's a bit of shame to report that the choice of cover song, Janis Ian's "At Seventeen", is the album's only misstep. But...that doesn't spoil this amazing album full of incredible melodies and great songwriting!

If you are a fan of The Cardigans, Wondermints, The Posies, Puffy, or Shonen Knife, then you will find yourself bowing down at the throne of this unsung pop princess! Hail Chocolat! All hail "Hamster" (almost) perfect pop masterpiece!



adrien said...

Such a good record! Thanks for re-posting it.

Anonymous said...

hi, i'm from tokyo. just found this amazing blog accidentally a couple minutes ago. well, the link doesn't work any more, so could u post this album again, pls? many thanks!!!

Anonymous said...

yes!! reup plz

Anonymous said...

hmmm... just found this and listened to AT SEVENTEEN first because it was one of the few tracks with a title i could understand... really liked it! surprised to read that it's the only track you didn't.