Spangle call Lilli line – cast a spell on her

One of the disadvantages of not being able to understand Japanese is not so much the lyrics being incomprehensible – for they are relatively easy to translate – but that it’s very difficult to find out more about the band’s background and history without it. Most Japanese bands do not inspire this desire to delve deeper, but Spangle call Lilli line (SCLL) do. Their music is somewhat reminiscent of 80s REM: slightly mysterious, vocals rather mumbled, unhurried musings put to delicate but quietly confident music which can sometimes burst into truly wondrous moments. ‘Cast a Spell on Her’ is full of those moments, its 6 minutes beginning with unusually (for them, anyway) tight composition and pace and then veering seamlessly into a hauntingly catchy chorus. The flow is complemented by a melody which possesses a classic timelessness so that the long duration of the song just flies by. It’s all rounded off perfectly by an insistent coda that leaves you wanting more. ‘Cast a Spell on Her’ is all the more surprising when you consider that SCLL’s other songs are usually formless, rambling (in a good way) and a tad bit indulgent, the very definitions of precious indie darling music. Their backlog is already good, and in particular ‘Nano’ and ‘Veek’ come close, but this is the song that elevates SCLL’s standing above their contemporaries. One third of my Holy Trinity of Japanese Songs (Female Vocals), ‘Cast a Spell on Her’ deserves a much wider audience.

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