S.J. Smith has spent some years away from the live scene, quietly working on new music and exploring areas outside of his regular brand of cruisy indie-rock. Smith’s latest single, Shinjuku Love Hotel, is possibly his most sonically audacious work yet. Combining his darker than usual vocals, hazy guitar tones and a cacophony of squealing sax, the piece is catchy, propulsive and at times pleasantly chaotic.
Still to be released, Smith’s upcoming debut album is already earning praise after securing a place in the final 30 shortlist of Happy Magazine’s inaugural Needle in the Hay competition - judged from over 1,000 entries. With a release date set for the coming months, S.J. Smith’s debut is one to look out for.