The mere knowledge that The Suzan are a Japanese garage-pop girl band, combined with cursory attention to the title of their new record – Golden Week For The Poco Poco Beat – gives you a reasonable indication of what’s in store.
The mere knowledge that The Suzan are a Japanese garage-pop girl band, combined with cursory attention to the title of their new record – Golden Week For The Poco Poco Beat – gives you a reasonable indication of what’s in store. Basically, it’s going to be pop, it’s going to be enticing and it’s probably going to be out there.
And you’d be right, and still you’d be finding more than you expected.
The Suzan kick off with Home, a Tom Tom Club-at-the-beach pop track with enough charisma to start an outer-suburban cult; on Ha Ha Ha they take the Motown girl-pop sensibility and infect it with Sandi And The Sunsets’ meta-new wave excitement. The jungle edge of Come Come evokes an image of Rip, Rig and Panic playing Boney M covers in the Osaka business district, while Secret takes The Pipettes’ schtick and gives it a garage sneer and the classical string-and-piano Rondo is, well, so out of place it’s perfectly appropriate.
On Uh Ah The Suzan channel Jane Birkin; on Devils they infuse Cab Calloway with the beehive attitude of The Shangri-Las and seize control of the moment like a preacher taking the message of pop love to the masses. Nice Codes is wild and furious ‘60s garage pop – its Japenglish lyrics are as intriguing as they’re indecipherable. Into The Light is as sweet as sugar, but without the calories, where Neverland is, in contrast to much of the surrounding tracks, elegantly restrained. The a cappella chanting of London Tonight is enough to lead you wide-eyed into a world where the Go-Gos rule supreme.
The Suzan’s highly entertaining pop journey concludes with Ramble, part radio broadcast, part haunting pop melodies, part torch song intensity. Golden Week For The Poco Poco Beat is both everything you expect to be, and nothing like you thought it would be. And that’s a good thing.
Golden Week For The Poco Poco Beat is out now thrrough Fools Gold Records and Inertia