music crush: tricot

Posted by Mike Messmore on Tuesday, August 1, 2023

I don’t find new music as much these days, but thought I’d share a band I recently fell in love with.

As a preface, I don’t mind listening to music in languages I don’t understand. To me the music and emotion matters more than the lyrics themselves.

tricot is a Japanese band that usually gets categorized as “math rock.” That vibe is definitely present, but there are also solid pop sensibilities. The music is very interesting in how it walks the line between art and accessibility.

They’re all female except the drummers, and all just incredible musicians. It makes my inner feminist so happy to see a group of women that are feminine but also genuine. They’re making music they love and aren’t a female “product.” It takes me back to the 90s with bands like Belly, The Breeders, Sleater-Kinney, etc. Just rock bands, but feminine as part of their identity and experience.


Their output is prolific, having 7 albums from 2013 to last year. That’s even more amazing with the complexity of their music. Often times a single song has enough “ideas” for 3 tracks from a normal band.

I have a musician crush on Motoko “Motifour” Kida. She bounces around styles with amazing proficiency. She’ll play amazingly complex parts that sound much less technical than they are. Watching live footage, her joy is infectious. She dives into each change like they’re all exciting.

Ikumi “Ikkyu” Nakajima’s vocals are a great balance. I think she particularly adds appeal to folks that aren’t music nerds. Her guitar playing is typically understated and a great foil to Motifour.

The current rhythm section of Hiromi Hirohiro and Yusuke Yoshida is so solid. They make tempo, rhythm, and time signature changes on a dime, even live. The bass can range from typical “rhythm” to melodic.

My normal math rock loves are more post-hardcore with that punk influence. But Tricot is a different world. There’s humor, pop, jazz, and heavy sounds… Sometimes mixed in the same track. It keeps a groove, but also has enough change to really keep my attention.


I also love that their last 2 albums Jodeki and Fudeki include a second disc with instrumental mixes of all of the songs. It’s easier for me to appreciate the music itself without vocals… but I’m a music nerd like that.

I recommend checking them out on your favorite music service. They also have a great YouTube channel with so many music videos and also live shows. The videos are really creative. They can be full of humor or fascinating visual art. The live performances are great.

Check them out if you like interesting music.