TOKIE is no stranger to the marriage of indie rock and jazz improvisation. She played bass with LOSALIOS, the instrumental outfit led by former Blankey Jet City drummer Nakamura Tetsuya. It’s easy to assume there would be overlap between TOKIE’s own band, unkie, and her other gig with LOSALIOS.
Both bands share the ability to play hard, fast, loud and free, but where LOSALIOS can get expansive — saxophone is a regular component — unkie focuses strictly on its core. The latter’s first album, the Price of Fame, showcases the white hot electricity this trio can produce.
Guitarist Aoki Yutaka keeps surprising with his versatility. As an original member of downy, he crafted thick, hypnotic textures with a tortured sound. downy broke up, and he was drafted into VOLA & THE ORIENTAL MACHINE, where he turned into New Wave guitarist with a lot more distortion and overdrive. With unkie, he turns into a surf twanger channeling the ghosts of Jimi Hendrix and his jazz band bosses.