Tommy Heavenly6

I Kill My Heart

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One of the alter egos of Brilliant Green songstress Tomoko Kawase, Tommy Heavenly6 is a singer and a band with a harder edge than much of the pop in common circulation in Japan. On I Kill My Heart, there's an attempt at an homage of sorts to the grunge sound. That attempt is only partially successful, however. Pieces like "Flower Crown" do a surprisingly good job of emulating the pathos of a band like Nirvana. Other pieces casually mix some of the darker guitar riffs of the Soundgarden ilk with a touch of lighter-weight pop singing, with the results a bit mixed. To her credit, the re-formation from a bubbly pop singer to a darker-tinged grunger is fairly well done. The use of minor chords and a carefully intoned flat delivery are hallmarks of the sound she's emulating, and she pays tribute well here. The songs aren't landmarks of grunge writing by any measure, but within the context of normally bubbly Japanese pop (including the happier alter ego Tommy February6), an album like I Kill My Heart holds secrets that haven't been spread into the territory before.