Ex- The News member, drummer, vocalist and all-round cutie Shishido Kavka‘s last release was her full length “Toridori“; an overly-long, forgettable mess that only had a few highlights floating amidst a sea of filler. It was one of the bigger letdowns of 2016, and certainly the one of the most short-lived albums in this listeners playlist. It is then, no surprise that I went into her latest EP, “DO_S” with no expectations whatsoever. Lucky then, it’s actually quite a bit of fun and worth giving her another chance for.
It opens with the cute, bouncy pop track “Tachiagare“, which sets the bar for the EP high. It’s colorful, wonderfully produced and Kavka’s vocals are on point. The bouncy fun continues into the funky “Boku was Boku de Aru to Iu Koto” which has one of the grooviest bass lines of 2017 so far. It’s easy to love the vocal delivery on it’s chorus, and the cheesy synth strings just add to the experience. 90s Jpop fans, this track is for you!
We fall back into the more traditional Kavka sound with “Ken to Hanataba” (and later on with “FLY HIGH!“) where rock grrrl is the name of the day, and it’s easy enough to just ‘go’ with it and have a blast. The rest of the EP features the funky “3.2.1….cut” and what would this EP be without the classic Jpop ballad style “Tatta Hitokoko” (complete with it’s glorious, unabashed string section that just makes this review give a big nostalgic grin). It’s a safe, but fairly mixed bag of jams that never lets up the energy and is a far cry from the bland uninspired work of her full length.
Shishido Kavka is an artist that works better in small doses, and this latest EP truly highlights that. There is no room for fatigue or boredom to sit in; it’s light, fluffy fun without any real commitment on the listeners part. Nobody is pretending there’s anything special or amazing going on here- but it doesn’t need to be- you’re only in it for less than 30 mins. This, coupled with the fact that these are some of Kavka’s most breezy, yet winning tracks yet gives this reviewer no problem recommending it for some casual listening to fill in that gap between more meaty releases.
A short review, for a short, sweet distraction that’s worth the 25 minutes of time it requires to put into it, DO_S restores my faith in Kavka as a fun pop-rock act to keep your eyes on (if you can take your eyes off to begin with). Pick it up!
7/10– DO_S is the bouncy pop record we needed to hear from Shishido Kavka.