Kero Kero Bonito are making serious waves in the indie pop landscape. Currently mid-way through their North American tour, the London-based trio continues to charm audiences with their unique blend of dreamy synth pop. Their latest work, a three track EP entitled ‘Civilisation I’, was released without warning at the end of last month.
The new collection opens with ‘Battle Lines’, an up-tempo romp which masks an underlying message of generational malaise under a bed of heady 8-bit style synths. Drawing on her own Japanese heritage, singer Sarah Midori Perry’s melodies play with pentatonic scales, acknowledging the group’s bilingual beginnings for the benefit of long-time fans.
The pan pipe pitch bends of lead single ‘When the Fires Come’ bring issues of climate change and environmental destruction to the fore. ‘The River’ follows up with similar predictions for a bleak future. Choral accompaniment bolsters the track’s religious allusions, which arrive in the form of references to a ‘great flood’:
‘When Earth is submerging
And heaven is open
The river will carry all of us to
Where we belong’
‘Civilisation I’ is an effective sonic portrait of millennial anxiety. Drowning in poetic existentialism, Kero Kero Bonito find success through an experimental combination of sombre lyricism and retro art pop. With such a wide range of musical influence, this highly dystopian EP almost seems to occupy a liminal space, somewhere between past and future. 1984, perhaps?