Kimonos’ first single, “Almost Human,” seemed designed to be as different from Mukai Shutoku’s other contemporary project (Zazen Boys) as possible, replacing mathey chaos and abrasive vocals with laid-back electronics and Leo Imai’s smooth singing. The next song from the group’s upcoming debut album, “Soundtrack To Murder,” still sounds distinctly unique from any other Japanese rock band working today, but the energy has been jacked up a bit from “Almost Human.” The digital leanings of this group remain but have become a little more menacing – check the ominous waves of noise near the beginning and the creepy bell-sounds going off underneath the track. Whereas the drums on “Almost Human” bordered on jazzy, they form a sturdy backbone here that gives the entire song a sense of forward movement. Imai’s singing voice sounds as professional as usual, but Shutoku gets a chance to sing as while gifting “Soundtrack” with his more jagged sound. I couldn’t think of a better teaser for Kimonos’ forthcoming album, “Soundtrack” subtly showing the ways this project will be branching away from the relative breeziness of “Almost Human.” Save a spot on your year-end lists.
(Thanks to Sparkplugged for posting this first.)