CHAI is one of the best Japanese girl groups. Two of the members, Mana and Kana, are twin sisters; the other members met the sisters during high school and became friends through their school’s light music performance club. After the girls graduated and went to college, they began performing throughout Nagoya and Aichi Prefecture and eventually moved to Tokyo to pursue the band. Since their formation they have released two albums, most recently “Punk.” They’ve also gained a more global following in recent years, and have toured the UK and US and signed onto labels in both the UK and US.
As Japanese musicians, the band has strived to go beyond the J-Pop genre and beyond the geographic boundaries of Japan. CHAI creates music that doesn’t perfectly fit within the pop mold. The women also focus a lot of their music towards empowering themselves and all women. They also take a new approach to “kawaii”, or “cute” culture: promoting that everyone is cute in their own way. CHAI is a wonderfully expressive and dynamic band that everyone should listen to. I recommend their most recent album, “Punk”, especially.