Even if their latest single weren’t called “Murderer,” Lolahiko would have the corner market on dark, mysterious storytelling stitched into lush, intriguing indie pop sounds. The Los Angeles duo, comprised of singer/songwriter Lauren Marie and vocalist/producer Ike Kawaguchi, only met a year ago, and yet their music is thick and lucid in ways that take some musicians a decade to emulate.
Lolahiko’s first single was called “Funeral,” and “Murderer” stays on-brand in both title and theme. Kawaguchi’s production takes these songs from seething to danceable, but lyrically, this is a group interested in pushing boundaries and taboos involving the deepest, darkest parts of the human psyche. Marie says this track “poured out” of the “anger that stems from the one you love… that makes you want to punch holes in the walls and dig your fingernails into your arms.” “Murderer” is a powerful acknowledgement of rage, particularly female rage, which is so rarely given the space in pop culture to be a three-dimensional emotion. This band makes beautiful, unsettling pop music, and it also makes space for every maimed and murdered woman in a song whose side of the story died with her. If Marie and Kawaguchi remain invested in giving female narrators agency in ways often denied them, even unsavory agency, in their music, I’m excited (and creeped out… Creep-cited?) to keep listening.
Lolahiko’s debut EP, The Year We Died But Stayed Alive, is out November 11th.