Taken from this week’s Future Pop mailer. Click here to subscribe.
Taking inspiration from J-pop (Japanese pop music) can put an artist at risk of criticism, as singers such as Gwen Stefani and Avril Lavigne have been accused of stereotyping Japanese culture in their music videos. However, I’d like to believe London-based group Kero Kero Bonito have good intentions, as singer Sarah Midori Perry is half-Japanese. British producers Gus Lobban and Jamie Bulled recruited Sarah, who is also a visual artist, to front the project in 2013. They released an EP and album last year, and have become known for their fun live show. Their most famous songs Intro Bonito and Flamingo are 50/50 Japanese and English, but new single Picture This is all English, apart from the middle 8. While the earlier tracks were mildly catchy and uplifting, Picture This is a completely joyous, properly constructed, pure pop song that puts them miles ahead of their friends in the PC Music scene. Their unironic praise of the selfie craze suggests they want to be part of the J-pop scene, not just pastiche it for a Western audience. I hope this song is a sign of great things to come, because indie music really needs some unpretentious fun at the moment.