Chesire • September 7th 2022


Back in 1988, record stores weren’t ready for Naoki Asai. Customers overlooked Aber Heidschi, his pink-jacketed private-press debut that looks (and sometimes sounds) as if it slipped out of another dimension. In 2022, Asai’s songs remain decidedly a stream, if not a world apart— Beatdelic finds the artist re-opening his book of beguiling fairy tales, although now he’s hitting some more comfortable grooves. In “The End of the World” Asai’s acoustic guitar, fast and warm, is accompanied by faint psychedelic flourishes that affirm a certain unpretentious mystique. “Violet!”, a lightly sunshine pop-colored duet, abounds with the charms of Asai’s voice, as delicate, solid, and honest as handmade glass. Elsewhere, “Dolphin in a Chinese Dress” brings in some of the aberrant guests of his lyrical world through vocal modulations, a welcome disruption. While the miracle of Asai’s Vashti Bunyan-esque return to recording remains fresh, it will be interesting to see where the artist continues from here; until then, listeners have the good fortune of being able to hang out with Beatdelic’s eccentric mellow.

Listen to “The End of the World” below

Author: Toby Reynolds

Artist Tags: Naoki Asai

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