We spoke to the band backstage at TRNSMT Festival.
Ticketmaster New Music is a carefully curated selection, showcasing artists we are expecting to make waves in the live music scene. Working closely with record labels, live event promoters and talent agents, our in-house experts handpick the most exciting emerging music.
In their typically upbeat biography on their official Facebook page, Japanese four-piece CHAI reference their love of the colour pink, of dumplings, of self-empowerment and of “kawaii” – the cuteness culture in their homeland.
Expressing an aim to redefine what it means to be cute, CHAI achieve just that on their latest full-length, this year’s atypical bubblegum pop album PUNK. The record, although far less riff-filled than the title may suggest, embodies their positive ethos. It takes the ever-popular J-pop sound and spins it on its head, with an unmistakable punk inspired DIY attitude running throughout.
CHAI came into their own in 2015, a few years after forming at college. Drawn together by a desire to combine western sounds and Japanese tradition, and indeed to mess with both, identical twin sisters Mana and Kana met drummer Yuna in high school and Yuki in college near Nagoya in central Japan.
Following a couple of EP releases, debut full-length PINK found a worldwide release towards the end of 2018. It introduced the world to the four-piece’s stylised sound, pulled from a wide range of influences including DEVO, Basement Jaxx, CSS and Marvin Gaye. This year’s PUNK makes even bigger strides forward, pushing CHAI towards the Grammy Award they openly long for.
Their live show is set to be one filled with similar joy. The jubilant songs are destined for an energetic delivery, and the band have been making waves across the global scene with an enigmatic blend of their carefree attitude, synchronised dancing, and unadulterated fun.
Set to take to The Great Escape (on the Ticketmaster New Music stage), and with headline shows to follow, CHAI are set to bring their East meets West concoction to the masses.
For any current and future CHAI live dates and tickets head to Ticketmaster.co.uk.
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