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Friday, June 15, 2007

LISTENING POST: CD REVIEWS

RECORDED

Caede "The Queen Of"


Having spent more than a decade flashing toothy grins across Japanese magazine covers and TV ads, Japanese model Kaede is looking to diversify her portfolio with the release of her first long player on the hip Harajuku label/record shop/cafe Escalator.

Recorded under the name Caede, the chic electro-pop of "The Queen Of" takes its cues from fashion's philosophy of appealing to the masses — here with fun, dancey beats — yet remaining obscure enough that high brow indie kids can dig it. Producer Cubismo Grafico (who also fronts Cubismo Grafico Five) offers up a delectable montage of house, IDM (intelligent dance music), and techno for Caede to sing over in English. She also delves briefly into the world of punk and hardcore, screaming her way through the chorus of hard-edged opener "Blackkkitty," but things quickly mellow out from there.

"Alphabet Shuffle" stands out among the disc's best cuts. Featuring a cheeky list of words and phrases for each letter of the alphabet, it may add a little spice to the monotonous days of the country's swelling population of grade-school English teachers.



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