Thursday, March 10
Indianapolis has been lucky enough to play host to NYC band Asobi Seksu twice in the last five months. Those who were unfortunate enough to miss both shows missed out on the chance to see a band that effectively combines J-pop sensibilities with the distorted, cascading sound of shoegazer rock. Asobi Seksu is a real treat for any fan of My Bloody Valentine or Love Psychedelico.
Asobi Seksu’s greatest strength is frontwoman Yuki. Off stage, she appears to be petite and adorable. On stage, despite having her ability to move on stage hampered by her need to remain behind a keyboard, she is an imposing pillar of charisma. Yuki easily commands and holds attention. While Yuki is clearly the focal point of the band, she is not its sole asset. Part of what makes this band truly special is the addition of crunchy, loud guitar sounds to the lighter pop-synth sounds more typical of Japanese pop.
With many of the songs’ lyrics written in Japanese, Asobi Seksu cannot depend on lyrical cleverness to win points with Western audiences. For all the average American knows, Yuki is singing songs about doing her laundry or sharpening pencils. But the band’s sound is catchy enough that understanding the lyrics is completely unnecessary. The language barrier proves to be no barrier at all with Asobi Seksu.
The band’s show at the Patio on Thursday was another display of the group’s talent, marred only slightly by a few recurring sound problems. This band seems to always bring their A-game to the stage.