Been there, done that

FEED is definitely the best UK band to not come from the UK.

This Japanese quartet’s sound calls to mind any number of women-fronted, post-punk bands, including but not limited to debut-era Cranberries, Innocence Mission, All About Eve and Mazzy Star.

Singer Saito Maya, whose perfect English diction can be attributed to her time spent at NYU and her half Scottish-American heritage, alternates from apeing Dolores O’Riardin and Sinéad O’Connor. She’s gone on record disliking the comparrison, but that doesn’t make her any less of a powerful, talented singer.

And while FEED tends to wear its influences on its sleeve — Smiths, anyone? — the band’s songwriting is strong enough to overcome any appearance of blind hero worship.

Sure, back in the early 90s, FEED would have been deridedly considered “alternative-lite”, but while the Cranberries have since moved further away from the kind of dreamy folk-pop that made Everybody’s Doing It So Why Don’t We? sublime, FEED effectively picks up where that debut left off.

If the band’s showcase at SXSW 2000 is any indication, its debut for Sony should even expand on that sound. The six tracks on this debut E.P. leaves listeners craving for more.

Make Every Stardust Shimmer consists entirely of English-language tracks, making absolutely no hints that the band is from Japan.

That could work either way for the band — on the one hand, they can appeal to the parts of an American audience that craves this music; on the other, they might not sound distinct enough for more casual listeners.

Make Every Stardust Shimmer is available in the U.S. through De-I Records. FEED’s full-length debut album will be released in Fall 2000 on Zone/Sony Music Entertainment in Japan.