Looking at their lineup, one might expect newly-formed Nagoya quintet I Like Birds would appear to be a shoegaze supergroup. The band’s lineup is stacked with veterans of the Nagoya shoegaze scene including Kosuke Tozuka (vocals & guitar, Apple Light), Yukie Kawaguchi (vocals & keys, me in grasshopper/mishca), Naoki Magota (guitar, Apple Light), Yutaka Mukouda (bass, softsurf), and Naoki Sogabe (drums, Tokenai Namae). As if in premeditated response to any assumptions regarding their sound, I Like Birds introduced itself with a Tweet that started off with the words (roughly translated) “a not-shoegaze band by the Nagoya shoegaze team”.
The band’s first demo, “Bus Stop”, confirms its direction away from the gazey side of things, toward a gentler indie pop sound in the vein of Death Cab or perhaps slightly cleaned up Daisies of the Galaxy-era Eels – the latter is maybe more of a stretch based on where I’m assuming they got their name. Of the bands represented by the individual members, Apple Light’s sound comes through the strongest. It’s a pleasant track, with the sort of melancholy that feels just right alongside Tozuka’s voice. Based on the lineup, the expectations are going to be pretty high from the get-go, but it’s hard to imagine this band not being good. Give I Like Birds a follow on Twitter and stay tuned for more news and music.