Just you and me, punk rock girl!
Do you like idols? And do you like things that are fun? And do you like rock ‘n’ roll music played at a fast tempo? Well, then you’ll like The Spunky. Get over yourself.
I can say with total honesty that I (even I!) hadn’t yet connected with THE SPUNKY when preparations for this site began, but I was cruising other websites and communities on the regular to make sure that I would be exposed to enough artists to warrant actually having a site that wouldn’t be just another Babymetal tribute.
“You failed at that one, Maniac!” Oh, you.
At any rate, I actually had a few light touches with THE SPUNKY along the way … unfortunately at the same time that I was getting a little idol fatigue. It’s not the idols’ fault that “Thunderbolt” was first played by me in the context of Little Brother asking out loud if every girl in Japan was in some kind of idol group.
But the name registered, and I recalled that there was an album coming out, and I even managed to follow up on that. And when I got to play the teaser, I got a little excited.
Of course, where most of all-of-us first got acquainted with them was in the 2016 Homicidols Corenament, where they shocked the literal world by winning the punk idols category and ultimately finishing in third place with their entry “Rock ‘n’ Roll and Idol and I”:
What are the things that stand out here, and just in general across their work? One, it’s all really well-written and well-produced, part of which you can tell because 2) the members are stupid talented, and their voices are put right out in front.
Also, their music is fun. This site owes its life as much to BiS and their legacy as anything, and there’s usually a certain merriment in the culture-shocking madness to those groups, but it’s all so deliberate that, if you take a step back, you wonder why they even bothered if it was all so joyless. Not the case for THE SPUNKY, who I’m not sure can even define “irony,” let alone apply it to their work.
And dammit, that easy-breezy attitude is very, very welcome sometimes.
These bouncy bolts of lightning are currently beginning what could be looked at as their big move, having recently relocated their performance schedule to Tokyo after getting their start in Nagoya. They’re also close to a ton of talent on the production side, with musical contributions from members of Kishidan (the band that inspired C-Style) and Mad Capsule Markets.
And, relevant to the point of this whole site, they have their eye on international markets.
I have to think that they have a chance. As mentioned, the music is on point, but the members really do make it happen. Rira is quite good on her own, but the real talent shines when she and Yuhi are working together. And I hate to celebrate one member over others in a group so small, but it’s worth pointing out that Yuhi (at 15!), given a chance to really show her chops with a power ballad …
If you’re having a hard time picking her out, you are crazy, because this is a solo song.
… she gets up there with the Nakamotos and Azumas and … the Ends (?) of the world.
At this point, having pumped out three quality singles and a full album in a little over two years together, and having relocated operations to the center of the idolverse in Tokyo, and being loaded with talent, the future for THE SPUNKY is a bright one.
What they sound like
Their base sound is a rough amalgam of Bay-area punk, with the brightness of the Bouncing Souls tempered with just a bit of an edge, but they’re legitimately “rock ‘n’ roll idols” with some true rockers in their repertoire. They may be idols, but the rock is real. And also the idol. They do that, too.
You’ll like them if
You’ve always wanted Hot Topic to come to life, or you still go to the Warped Tour every year even though it’s a caricature of itself and you know enough idol to think, “You know what this second stage needs right now? Idols doing punk that’s roughly 80 percent better than that terrible band that acted like a Jane’s Addiction cover band but sounded more like the sound that Dave Navarro’s liver makes in the morning.”
Entries on the Ultimate Homicidol Playlist
THE SPUNKY, make more YouTube-able videos of your best stuff. I can’t make things happen with Soundcloud! Nonetheless, “Rock ‘n’ Roll and Idol and I” and “Thunderbolt” are both there. “Kanjo VOLTAGE” would be if you had a non-live video for it; nonetheless, enjoy the crap out of this very good song.
“Kanjo VOLTAGE” (single)
“Rock ‘n’ Roll and Idol and I” (single)