Miho Hatori (USA)
Label: Phantom Limb
Period: November / December
NYC’s rare and inimitable talent New Optimism (aka Japanese musician Miho Hatori, co-founder of the beloved Cibo Matto and a collaborative partner of Gorillaz, The Beastie Boys, John Zorn etc.) New Optimism is Miho’s new invigorated project, a vivid, unpredictable and technicolour sonic palette that shapeshifts mercurially around grooving basslines, subtle electronica, leftfield sound explorations and playful experimental pop.
New Optimism can be seen as a natural landing point for Miho’s past musical journeys - strange and wonderful, encompassing pop, experimental, hip-hop and dance music: her work with Beck’s backing musicians may have contributed to the brightly-coloured avant-soul of Amazon To LeFrak; her time as a Gorillaz member (Miho was the voice of cartoon band-member Noodles) offers a window into the intelligent, mischievous pop songwriting heard in New Optimism’s structure-toying and Miho’s infectious singing voice.
The strains of Caribbean/Brasilo-beat littered through the record are evidence of Miho’s fascination with Latin music and follow her curveball 2003 bossanova duet album with Smokey Hormel. The additional production credits of ex-Vampire Weekend member Rostam [Batmanglij] enter the mix as noise-driven synth lines and bubbling percussion.
Bandcamp New + Notable
Playlisted on ‘Warp Selections’
BBC 6 Music - Tom Ravenscroft Guest Mix, aired Sept 7
Red Bull Radio - Interview + Mix on Mark McNeill’s Open End show (via Miho)
Self-Titled Mag - track-by-track feature w/ Andrew Parks
Get in Her Ears - Jet Setters made Track of the Day on July 10
"Amazon to LeFrak is vibrant with life and emotion… elusive pop fantasias, and intentionally so.” - Pitchfork
"[Amazon to LeFrak] is playful, fabulist and personal... can barely contain the originality bursting out of every seam” - FACT
"Miho Hatori remains at her creative peak as New Optimism." - The 405
“Unquestionably multitalented as well as multilingual...We should all be grateful that Miho Hatori speaks the universal language of music so fluently.” - Impose
“this sense of punch-drunk euphoria can be found all the way through” - CMU
"high-flying and super-styling" - The Week in Pop”
Miho Hatori (improv) - 'Recycle Dat Shit'
New Optimism - 'Invisible Tan'
'Dr Myho' live @ Superdeluxe Japan
Mail: andrew[at]phantom-limb.co.uk (UK, EU)