‘Oozing coolness and sophistication, it lights up the sky in an insanely musical way’
Intro to Hoshino:
Featuring on BBC Introducing Cambridge at the start of February, four piece band ‘Hoshino’ would appear to be on track to light up the musical sky. Releasing polished tracks via their Bandcamp page since forming in 2015 – when they debuted with their accomplished sounding EP Minds – it’s incredibly surprising that it’s taken nearly 3 years to become acknowledged. However, in building on their inspiration from the likes of Bonobo and Erykah Badu, ‘Stars (In the Night Sky)’ provides an effortlessly cool, ear-worm inducing sound that’s sure to get them noticed.
Featured Track: Stars (In the Night Sky)
Feeling like we’ve landed in the middle of the track, Stars (In the Night Sky) has an immediate sense of Hoshino making a statement. This is indeed the one. As an opening, you can’t exactly call the multi-layered texture of booming bass, synth patterns and prominent drums an ‘introduction’ in the normal sense. This said, it is an introduction which simply oozes coolness and sophistication. As for the production, to put it mildly: it’s insane! Set unusually high in the mix, the drums bring a sense that you are right next to the snare as it cracks while the more fragmented elements completely encompass you. Like I said, it’s insane!
Having already been effortlessly pulled in, the initial vocal hook of ‘You think you’re the stars in the night sky,’ signals the first appearance of the chorus. Like the introduction, the sensation here is that we are already a long way into the track. Surely this is where a track should be heading? Isn’t it? Actually, no. It may only be less than a minute in, but the indulgent sound perfectly matches the musicality within the track itself. In fact, anything less, would do the track a disservice.
Shifting to a more restrained sound, the first verse sees the accompaniment minimally pulled back and the lyrical content come to the fore. Developing an increasingly soulful tone, the accomplished sounding vocal transforms into an entirely luxurious listen. Continuing to take the track to yet another level, the pre-chorus sees the vocal enhanced by harmonic multi-tracking and, with the emergence of infectious guitar and synth lines, it makes for a truly immense sound.
However, change is to occur with an unexpected break in the indulgent sound brought about by an unexpected rap-like vocal. This, if you haven’t heard the track already, may seem like a strange decision. But in fact, it works perfectly and in doing so, provides an equally perfect musical springboard before we dive back into the luscious sound. This though, isn’t be the only change as while the funky nature of the track mostly continues to the end, in a final twist, we get a chance to hear Hoshino’s much sparser, but equally indulgent side.