Artists to Watch in 2018: Haiku Hands
Over a year and a half ago, Claire Nakazawa and Beatrice Lewis began plotting the world domination of electro-hip hop collective, HAIKU HANDS. Nakawaza is known for her performances with Urthboy and Horrorshow (as Chaos Emerald) as well as her practice as a visual artist, while Lewis is a synth and electro artist and a DJ. They recruited Mie Nakazawa, a visual artist and Claire’s sister, and Mataya Young, an accomplished jazz vocalist, and Haiku Hands burst to life with the release of debut single ‘Not About You’ to universal hype earlier this year.
Taking inspiration from artists like Elliphant and Little Dragon, Haiku Hands blur the traditional boundaries of genre and defy categorisation. The band prioritises collaboration above any individual’s vision, resulting in the spontaneous, multifaceted sound of ‘Not About You’. The infectious beat was created by Angus Stuart (AKA Hermitude’s El Gusto), but the members of Haiku Hands crafted the lyrics and visuals together to represent the collective’s rebellious energy.
Featuring tongue-in-cheek lyrics like, “You look like a tortoise/ Your issues are enormous/ in my eyes you’re flawless,” ‘Not About You’ encapsulates the carefully curated ethos of Haiku Hands: not just female power and mutual support, but also joy and absurdity. No other band could get away with yelling “Shut up!” and “Chill” throughout a song and still be completely charming and likeable.
Judging by the solid foundation established by the band this year, we can expect to see more unique tracks and hopefully even a longer release from the band in 2018. After rounding out the year with a bunch of memorable live shows, we’re predicting Haiku Hands will be back and bigger than ever.
Words by Molly McLaughlin