Lady Murasaki (EP)
Lady Murasaki = The Seatbelts – big band + Norah Jones
Had I not seen this band in person, I never would have guessed these soulful vocals came from a 6’ Japanese woman commanding the mic with a classic Gretch in hand. But this poppy five-piece rock group really isn’t anything they appear to be, and that’s a really good thing. All five members embrace the quirks that probably wouldn’t gel with other bands they’d be better suited for, and utilize them to piece together this J-Pop four-track EP. The album itself is very beautiful, playing off lead singer Amber Taniuchi’s vocal range chord by chord, as demonstrated on “Hope Is Still Around the Corner” and “Naked Truth.” While the band excels in style, it slightly lacks substance, as with a lot of pop music, and it doesn’t help that the band only put out four tracks. It will be interesting to hear what a full album sounds like when they finally make one.