The Japanese House (AKA 20-year-old Amber Bain) is a British artist who has made waves across the pond, and is now making her way over to America. I first came across Bain when she was the opener for The 1975 during their last tour. I was at the Barclays Center in Brooklyn when Bain, who isn’t much older than me, took the stage and confidently performed her stacked harmonies, haunting melodies and synth-heavy interludes. At the time she had only released two EPs, Clean and Pools To Bathe In that feature four songs each.
She is set to release her third EP, titled “Swim Against The Tide,” on November 11th. George Daniel and Matty Healy of The 1975 co-produced the EP, and Healy even called this upcoming project “The best EP [he has] heard in so long. Truly brilliant” via Twitter. “Face Like Thunder” is the first single off of the new EP and was released this past month. The video, also released recently, is fairly simple, yet still very artistic. Set in a desert, the story is that the usual cool girl said something “…terrible and tried to redeem it” (according to the lyrics). The guy wants nothing to do with her now and the desert setting parallels the now barren relationship.
What’s so great about Bain’s music is that she truly embodies the genre of “synth pop” perfectly. There is not a simple pop radio fluff aspect to it, but at the same time it is still easy to listen to and follow. The lyrics and melodies aren’t trying too hard, yet if you really listen to the lyrics they are really though-provoking and multi-dimensional, making for the perfect combination of a good listen that makes you think.
If you want to listen to music that makes you feel like you’re in a London coffee shop on a rainy fall day in November, put on her EPs and let the melodies and orchestrations do their thing while the lyrics perfectly represent the dreamy sound. The only artist I can (kind of) compare her to is Imogen Heap, only because they both use many stacked harmonies that create a full sound. But ultimately, The Japanese House is doing her own thing you don’t want to miss out on.
Bain is set to start her own tour at the end of this month. If you’re into some electronic sound with heart-wrenching lyrics to match, The Japanese House is one to watch out for.