HARU NEMURI is setting the world ablaze. After two LPs and several world tours including festival appearances, the 28-year-old Japanese rockstar has captivated the world with her idiosyncratic poetry. Haru’s trailblazing music seamlessly blends genres—fromthe punk magnetism of Karen O and Fugazi, to the glittering shoegaze of Shinsei Kamattechan, or the experimentation of Björk and Susumu Hirasawa. Armed with only her vocals and a laptop, her shows mesmerize crowds from Europe to Asia to America, the greatmajority of whom don’t even speak her language. "In the beginning I didn’t really think of [this global response] at all,"Haru says. "I never imagined that there would be many listeners outside of Japan, so when it happened to become that way, I was ableto notice that I can do something like this."HARU NEMURI grew up as Haruna Kimishima in a residential area of Yokohama, but found her life characterized by nihility and flatness, and has little to say about her upbringing. She was interested in—in her own words—"absolutely nothing."Her life changed when she was 16: on a school trip, Haru and a friend were browsing television in a hotel room when they stumbled across a performance by the Tokyo alternative rock four-piece CreepHyp. Galvanized, Haru fell in love with the idea of becoming a musician. She secretly created beats on the family computer, formed a short-lived band with the friend—then, at age 21, ran away from home and started up a life in Tokyo as HARU NEMURI the mesmerizing, multi-genre artist. It’s staggering to reconcile that Yokohama version of HARU NEMURI with the whirlwind she becomes onstage now. Throwing herself into the crowd without even looking, swirling in long skirts out of a fairytale, Haru’s performance is so enthralling that it’s all but impossible to tear your eyes away. She describes her vocal style as poetry rapping; her impassioned, breathless delivery tears into capitalism, the patriarchy, a climate apocalypse, and melds with an arresting blend of J-rock, shoegaze, and post-hardcore. When she sings, soliloquizes, screams, it’s as if there’s no one else in the room but herself, and you can hear the crowd collectively hold their breath. In 2018, Haru released her first full-length album, Haru to Shura; a lightning-in-a-bottle debut, it featured enrapturing tracks like the J-rock fantasia "Narashite"and noise pop stomper "MAKE MORE NOISE OF YOU,"and Anthony Fantano’s rave coverage of it attracted immediate attention from music fans in the West. Most recently, 2022 saw Harureleasing Shunka Ryougen, an even bolder experiment that sprawls across 21 rich, impassioned tracks. Lead single "Déconstruction"emphasizes Haru’s core values through a titular philosophical concept coined by Jacques Derrida, encouraging us to "doubt thefoundation of the structure of the structure itself,"across language and politics and art. Haru holds this ideal across Shunka Ryougen in a foundation that is undeniably, purely punk, déconstructing society around her, the very persona of HARU NEMURI, orthe boundaries of the songs themselves. After all, punk, to Haru, simply means "to be most kind to those who are placed in the most vulnerable position in the society."Both Haru to Shura and Shunka Ryougen’s titles are puns on the character "springtime"in Haru’s name. "Spring is a relatively warm season, and I think it has a general impression of being a calm time,"Haru says. "But to me, it’s as if it's the moment when a fire flares up. It’s like a motif for me in that way.In 2023, Haru has begun to find more peace within herself. Although she developed her musical self in the Tokyo indie scene, the city ultimately became overstimulating; she now lives in a more anonymous part of the country where she can take off the mantle of HARU NEMURI. But you can sense Haru is an endlessly restless artist; she’s still working on new songs in the studio, and an endless fury motivates the heart of her music, from its punk and riot grrrl ethos to the frantic, anthemic core of its poetry. "Before I moved [away fromTokyo], I was a little worried because I thought if I lost this impatience I have now I wouldn't be able to make any more music,"she laughs. "But whatever I’m pissed off at can continuously piss me off, and just living is very dreadful, so I can still continue to make music."After all, fire is the core leitmotif of HARU NEMURI, but it evokes more than just destruction; it heralds renewal, like a phoenix’s rebirth or the first vivid bloom of flowers in the springtime. And on Shunka Ryougen’s album cover, Haru wears an otherworldly dress glimmering in a hundred fiery tones, her pose stoic against the horizon of the cold ocean. She evokes the impossibility of setting fire to an ocean—and trying, and failing, and trying still against an endless tide.
No detailed information is available at this time.
Admission price TBC from See Tickets, Tickets Scotland. Buy online here. Over 18 only.