Naia Izumi has been busy throughout 2106 as she’s burst onto the music scene with a collection of EP’s that have been gaining an increasing momentum on Bandcamp. The latest is Natural Disaster and it showcases her unique blend of electric guitar shredding and soulful singing and ambient pop tastes.
Izumi’s work is always like a duet with her voice and the guitar. Both are pressed hard against the speaker and everything else is background mechanics in many ways. It’s this unique juxtaposition of beautiful singing and soulful melodies alongside a guitar that’s about to go absolutely nuts that draws you in and the title track works it beautifully. You know its a winner when even the verse riff sounds like it could be a rock songs solos. The finger picking is a really nice touch. “What the Hell” tilts slightly towards a soulful blues edge with some nice ambient twists to the guitar in the choruses where as the math rock verses feel like Naia is stomping down her authority with size 29’s with positive lyrics about making the best of a bad situation.
Izumi herself describes her sound as math rock and “Instinct” is where that comes to the fore. This EP is more controlled in the math department but here the beats roll, the guitar seems to fly off into a hedonistic horizon and Naia herself even beatboxes in places as her voice sounds less soulful and more taut and strained. The EP closes with the excellent “Roses” where the music is given room to breathe after 3 full on tracks. The track is sparse and the use of birdsong throughout is a lovely touch as the song showcases Izumi’s voice to perfection.
It’s lovely to discover a new artist that’s doing something really quite trail blazing in many ways. The genre crossing is great and there’s plenty of ways she could go from here. I’m mega excited to see where she goes next.
Recommended Track: Instinct