Released: 22.06.08 / Label: FRIENDSHIP.

In Japanese the full band name is: “I’m not going to the beach in my pajamas.” so I’m a little disappointed in the version they chose for English, PAJAUMI.

This band is a crazy mix of talented individuals. The whole project is the brainchild of Kazuhiro Bessho, an incredible pianist/composer/lyricist/more, who has played with a ton of artists here in Japan and is a member of the incredible group Gentle Forest Jazz Band. He also has credits in a lot of commercial and theme song work, some movies as well. He’s great, and he’s using his formidable composing skill to take this group’s music to the next level. The other members are equally impressive, but I don’t know how many are permanent so more on them next time.

This song is a smooth as butter. The composition is fun and the playing is superb. The slip beat and super active bass line groove hard, and combined with the killer keyboard work it all feels fresh and exciting. The vocals are good too, but definitely feel like they’re in the way a lot of the song. They bad lyrics really aren’t helping things, especially in a genre where rhyme and theme are so important. The lack of skill here really brings the song down. Which is too bad, because musically it’s on par with some of the best R&B and soul groups I’ve heard. With all the jazz theory in the band the lack of lyric theory is a bad look though, and I think it stands out enough to keep me from listening again. Or at least from listening too closely. I’ll definitely be checking back in for all their new releases in the future.

Verdict: Take it or leave it (2.7/5)

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