Aug 19th, 2016
Tanukichan’s Radiolove EP is so named for the connection made between a listener and a musician. Radiolove materializes in those moments when your favorite song, most definitely written just for you, is being sung, and everything’s okay. Everything will be okay. This feeling comes effortlessly with these four new Tanukichan songs. Vibrant and subdued, cold and hot, this collection evokes the mixed emotions only music can express so well. Hannah van Loon is the being behind the songs and Radiolove is her solo debut: four songs of in-the-red guitar fuzz matched with astute timing and beautiful melodies.
The opener “Enough” is a rhythmically hypnotic song featuring My Bloody Valentine-like charges of noise. “I took everything, everything I could/ don’t know if it’s enough for me,” van Loon sings, calling to mind a certain assertive selfishness that can thrive in the midst of hopelessness. Some of the EP’s lyrics are about relationships, some about music and life, but “mostly I want to convey an emotion or a state of mind, and not necessarily a specific story,” van Loon says. “And More” morphs from a classic mid-20th-century pop song to a Tom Petty-meets-Pixies climax. The title track expresses the joy of communion in music and the soundtrack is justly blissful. The song pairs the mournful distortion of The Radio Dept. with the cautiously optimistic melody of a George Harrison tune.
“The songs were written at a time when I needed to break out of the routine I was in and do me,” van Loon says. Based in Oakland, van Loon toured with the group Trails and Ways for four years before departing to focus on Tanukichan. Van Loon’s band includes drummer Aaron Gold and bassist Scott Brown, both members of Astronauts, etc. Company Records head Chaz Bundick (Toro Y Moi, Les Sins) produced and recorded the trio in his home studio. Bundick was able to capture the raw feel of the live band sound with crystal clarity. As a producer, Bundick helped cement the tone and style of the songs, pushing in a shoegaze direction with heavy guitar tones and some extra synthesizer.
3. And More
• Produced and recorded by Chaz Bundick (Toro Y Moi, Les Sins)
• Hannah Van Loon has played in various Bay Area bands, most notably Trails and Ways.
• Band includes members of Astronauts, etc.
Hannah van Loon is an Oakland-based musician who grew up playing classical violin, but picked up guitar along the way to accommodate her growing love for rock music. Van Loon has played in various Bay Area bands, most notably Trails and Ways. Working as a carpenter to pay the bills, she spends most of her time on various woodworking projects and making music. Tanukichan is her first solo project, a post-punk powergaze into van Loon’s mind. She is joined live by drummer Aaron Gold and bassist Scott Brown, both of Astronauts etc.
Company Records head Chaz Bundick (Toro Y Moi, Les Sins) produced and recorded the trio’s debut EP, Radiolove. “Radiolove is when you’re listening to music and don’t need to be around your friends or anyone at all because the person singing your favorite song definitely wrote it just for you; and when you see each other someday in the afterlife, you will be best friends/lovers. So nothing else in life really matters and everything is okay.”
The artist’s name derives from tanuki, a wild Japanese raccoon dog. As told in Japanese folklore, they are often inebriated, shape-shifting tricksters with enormous testicles. “I feel a connection with this animal because of its obvious masculinity and lack of fucks given,” van Loon says. “Since a young age, I’ve felt a pull toward interests that were traditionally male-dominated: building, sports, mathematics, rock music. It has been a process for me to feel like I belong in these areas. Using the name of a mythological creature with huge balls felt like a way to declare my presence.”