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Wednesday, July 09, 2008

Honey Mannie

Thought I'd introduce myself first - I'm Fooel, and I'm new here at Tokyo Music. Graeme is presently back in Blighty but I am happily ensconced in Tokyo. I know that Graeme plans to continue writing about music so hopefully he will also be posting in the near future.

And what better way to while away a Wednesday evening than by reviewing one of the latest releases on Japan Files? Not many I can think of.

Having downloaded Honey Mannie's six-track mini album from the site I made a conscious decision to find out no more about them until I'd listened to the album a few times and jotted down my thoughts.

"Supernatural" and "Lovely Disco Queen" open proceedings and things certainly start as they mean to go on. Electronic patter and playskool keyboards underly a cutesy-voiced delivery. I found myself picturing a Harajuku version of Bill and Ben. It's cute, it's about cute, and "Lovely Disco Queen" receives a bonus point for including the word "Meltdown".

The third track has passed me by at each listen, I'm afraid, although things pick up on "Magazine", a nicely-paced head-nodder which prompted some not inconsiderable sofa dancing including an attempt at the Peter Crouch robot dance.

On "Sister" the singer approaches matters in the nonchalant manner of a French chanteuse, and one can almost imagine the vocal being recorded while she leans out the kitchen window smoking a cigarette. Which would be quite a feat, but that's what it sounds like to me.

Throughout the tracks begin with more than a whiff of New Order before inevitably a blanket of cuteness is heaved over proceedings (imagine your gyuu-don being smothered in whipped cream just as you go to take your first bite). But not on the final track, and for me the highlight of this album, "Bitter". Here Hello Kitty takes a sepia-toned monochrome ride down the Mekong Delta in search of Colonel Kurtz, but finds something much more scary amongst the undergrowth - a seething, unforgiving Japanese woman. She will undoubtedly cut your balls off (you bastard).

And so with that decent surprise at the end I'd say it all works out well enough for what it is over six tracks. So if you fancy a bit of cutesy electronic pop music with a hint of lemon, then you could do worse than Honey Mannie. Good stuff.