winnie is a band that makes a striking first impression and the group’s latest release is a great musical foot to start 2009 on.
winnie’s third mini album, Headquarter dropped January 14th. Boasting seven full tracks, it’s a poignant effort that leaves me wondering: if this is what a mini album is like for this band, what would a full-length release sound like? I hope to learn an answer some time later this year. But Headquarter will certainly suffice for now. Wow!
The band’s dual lead singer-fronted, guitar-driven alternative pop/rock sound is incredibly fresh and beautiful. These guys and girl sound like they know who they are and aren’t growers…I started loving ‘em during the first chorus in “first class speed of light” and felt I almost intimately “got” their sound after listening to “sweep”. Those were the first two tracks I heard! That’s a testament to winnie’s unequivocal uniqueness.
The two lead vocalists thing works wonderfully and both singers’ contributions are vital. Iori and Okuji often alternate singing with either one beginning a track to later be joined by the other in choruses and such. Both Iori and Okuji have great standalone voices but the real magic happens when they create harmony together.
Something like a trio and a half, winnie features two vocalist/guitarists — one female, one male — Iori and Okuji along with drummer Shoji and a split support bassist line up of either Akira Abe or Naoto Komatsu. They are currently signed with EVOL RECORDS.
The band was formed in 2002 and released their debut release, restock this falling wrong later that year. The band’s second effort, first class speed of light dropped in ’03. Two releases came in ’08: The Darkest Eternal Lights mini album and the single, sweep.
The seven tracks on Headquarter are “sweep”, “brightness”, “first class speed of light” (not off the release that bares the same name), “without you”, “celebration lays on me”, “stuck in the air”, and “suddenly”.
Watch the PV for “first class speed of light”. I hum the bass line everytime: