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Shamblin’ Well: Kaori Motoi’s Home Sick

“Demo” is a bit of a frightening word, because one fears that the music they are hearing isn’t a finished product, but just a sketch bound to be erased and reconstructed multiple times down the line. Why not just wait for the final product? Osaka singer-songwriter Kaori Motoi’s first release, Home Sick, comes with that four-letter word, but the five songs within it are more than able to stand on their own, making for a strong first foray. Part of Home Sick’s charm lies in the rough production quality that comes with being a demo…the general fuzziness of the recording turns out to be an asset on songs such as “Has Come,” a relatively straightforward stomper that gains fierceness through the slightly squalled recording sound. “Packing” adds sugary sweet xylophone hits, while multi-tracked Motois trip over one another come the chorus. And the roughness makes the dated keyboard on finale “See Sea” all the more woozy. It’s tough to see any amount of polish making these songs sound stronger than they do in their current rambling state. Get it here, or listen below.