Shonan no Kaze


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The fourth album from Japanese dancehall wunderkinds Shonan no Kaze hits with the massive bang of the title track, and refuses to turn down the energy level for the rest of the proceedings. The four-part group, anchored vocally by Wakadanna's toasting, takes the idea of dancehall energy to a new level, chanting and shouting their way through a series of pieces at high volume and high intensity. When they finally take a "slower" approach, as in "Suiren Hana," it's only to use a casual piano accompaniment while passing verses among themselves. They make a fair attempt at singing a bit of melody here, though their characteristic gruffness and tendency to shout make it difficult to believe in the sincerity of their delivery. They seem to be straining against their time signature bridles, waiting to break free again. The compositions tend to ramble a bit behind the vocals, bubbling and careening around guitar solos and over-insistent drum lines, but the boys tend to carry the sound with sheer charisma and power. This is not music to toy with, this is music to power a massive dance party. And it delivers in spades.