Chai Pink 823fc

(Burger Records)

CHAI is an electro-pop/rock quartet from Nagoya, Japan, that finds the concept of kawaii—the celebration of “loveable” or “cute” in Japanese popular culture—to be restrictive. They instead rep a more inclusive “neo-kawaii,” which celebrates uniqueness in non-conforming bodies and accepts them all as cute. They also use “N.E.O.” as their own acronym: “New Excite Onna-band” (onna meaning “woman”), and as the name of their giddy, frenzied pop single, which points out just how boring homogenized beauty is. (You won’t regret watching the video for this song.) Naming influences like Tom Tom Club and CSS, CHAI also experiments with disco, rapid-fire hip-hop, and easy ’80s funk across Pink’s 11 tracks, hitting topics like small breasts, bad-hair days, and a love affair with gyoza dumplings. (5/5)


By Emily Nokes
Pink was released October 25, 2017
This article originally appeared in the October/November 2018 print edition of BUST Magazine. Subscribe today!


More from BUST

PRIMA's "Diva" Is A Fun, Feminist Anthem: BUST Premiere

Shonen Knife: Three Decades of Cute

7 Empowering K-Pop Songs You Gotta Jam To 

Tags: kawaii , CHAI , J-pop , music , music , CHAI , J-pop, , kawaii

Support Feminist Media!
During these troubling political times, independent feminist media is more vital than ever. If our bold, uncensored reporting on women’s issues is important to you, please consider making a donation of $5, $25, $50, or whatever you can afford, to protect and sustain
Thanks so much—we can’t spell BUST without U.