87 and The Toys – FFO: Violent Femmes, Neutral Milk Hotel, The Mountain Goats.

If you’ve ever wondered what All-You-Can-Eat Sushi restaurants and Georgia Governor Kemp have in common, ‘Japanesy if you Pleasey’ is your answer. The latest EP from the 87 and The Toys trio takes on American politics (in reference to the global Covid-19 pandemic) and binge-watching habits with a quirk-riddled, raw garage indie sound.

Lo-fi but high energy, the EP is grounded in reality in its inspirations whilst the charming nature of its musical purity removes any real separation from the listener. Hearing 87 and The Toys recorded is exactly what you would imagine them to sound like live, which not only shows off the appeal of a DIY approach, but also the skill to make solid content without all the whistles and bells of production.

Due to the band having members with Japanese backgrounds – Hana (min-drum, piano and vocals) hailing from Japan, and Patrick (rhythm guitar and vocals) having a Japanese mother – references to the eastern culture can be found throughout the EP.

From cuisine to characters, the addition of these cultural elements adds a layer of sophistication, ‘Japanesy If You Pleasey is not just a fun romp into DIY indie, rather an experience of clever lyrics and stripped-backed instrumentals that hold a narrative throughout.

In a surprising move, the final track of the EP (‘LOVE’) is a ballad-like piece sung by Hana in Japanese, further proving that 87 and The Toys know how to create a collection of songs with personality and authenticity. Not to mention the fact that the whole EP has been recorded on 8-track with a Tascam recorder, demonstrating the true DIY spirit that the trio embodies.

Overall, 87 and The Toys are a refreshing take on DIY indie-pop with a real sense of integrity. Japanesy If You Pleasey is fun, reliable and a good time all round. If you enjoy quirky lyricism, pacing to take note of, or the free feeling that accompanies most indie-pop encounters, then this a must that you may be missing out on.

Check out the EP here: 

Soundcloud: https://soundcloud.com/87andthetoys/sets/japanesy-if-you-pleasey 

Spotify: https://open.spotify.com/artist/3pv3LeeMHwQtauS4aPrxHX?si=kRlGaG0vTtGRXZL8YYoUsw

Check out 87 and The Toys here: 

Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/87andthetoys

Instagram: https://www.instagram.com/87band/

Website: https://87andthetoys.bandcamp.com/

Youtube: https://www.youtube.com/channel/UChwi1ucmaeMWuWLkJTE6HMg

Words by Ellen Oakley

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