Arlene Hattori
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Arlene Hattori

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'Finding Myself Again'   

-  Genre: 'Punk/New Wave' -  Release Date: '2005'-  Catalogue No: '4113'

Our Rating: 9 out of 10 stars
The stars say it all: Arlene Hattori's "Finding Myself Again" is one of the year's best albums as well as most promising debuts. You can include Hattori with the current New Wave revival, but don't expect the usual Gang of Four or Cure post-punk riffs that has been the dominating retread lately. Instead, Hattori conjures flashbacks of the jangly (the Smiths, Aztec Camera) and soul-tinged (the Style Council, Everything But the Girl) side of New Wave, which makes her album a bolt of cold air on a humid summer afternoon. Hattori's voice is totally '80s -- raspy in the Stevie Nicks sense yet bittersweet a la the late Kirsty MacColl.

What separates Hattori from the pack of young wolves on an '80s notalgia rampage is that she sounds like she's from the decade instead of merely reviving it. A quick scan of her online biography proved that right as she has been in the music scene since the dawn of New Wave in the early '80s.

The sunny, ringing guitars of "I Want to Know" brought back memories of college days, obsessing over Everything But the Girl's "Love Not Money" LP. I thought they didn't make music like this any longer. But, wait, there's more! "Give It Up" has a funky mid-'80s vibe that would've made a club favorite, especially with its icy synthesizers and AOR guitar solos. Just to make the '80s roots even more obvious, Hattori includes a dance remix of "When I Looked Into Your Eyes" that could've been released in 1987. "Frustrated Maryann" is what the Smiths would've been like if they had a Japanese woman on vocals.

Visit immediately and buy this CD above all else if you're missing the '80s.
  author: Adam Harrington


Arlene Hattori – Finding Myself Again
Review by : Kyrby Raine

Where to buy:
Rating: 4 1/2 docs out of 5
"Gentle Wave"
June 16, 2005

Once in a while a rock critic will be surprised by a promo CD – and I’m not just talking about the quality of the record, either. In the case of Arlene Hattori, I had pegged her album as the kind of female singer/songwriter folk that suddenly became marketable a decade ago with Jewel and her contemporaries. Not even close. Finding Myself Again is, instead, in the vein of ‘80s New Wave along the lines of the much-missed Kirsty MacColl. By New Wave I don’t mean the slashing guitars of frenzied post-punk grandchildren like Bloc Party or Franz Ferdinand; rather, Hattori would’ve fit in Oglio Records’ Flashback Café CDs from a number of years ago. Hattori operates within the mellow, soothing side of the genre. True to its roots, Hattori incorporates numerous styles – disco, soul, vintage R&B – within its New Wave framework just like so many British groups did in the good ol’ days. Finding Myself Again is one of those rare LPs with no filler; every song is stitched together with warmth and a strong feel for hooks



Average Ratings
Value for money 9/10
Overall value 9/10
Recommended 100%

Review of Arlene Hattori Finding Myself Again by Barry Andrews
1 of 1 total reviews

From Manchester, England on 16th Jun 2005
User Ratings
Other Artists Listened To Rachel Sweet, Romeo Void, Stevie Nicks
Value for money 9/10
Overall rating 9/10
Recommended Yes

Good Points
Perfect pop vocals, '80s sounds accurately recaptured, catchy songs.

Bad Points 0

General Comments
Japanese singer Arlene Hattori creates music that nobody seems to be doing anymore. Sure, while there are many young turks battling for airspace in a full-blown New Wave revival, Hattori carves her own piece of the piece, slicing a plate of winsome girl pop that is both innocuous and mature.

Comparisons to her predecessors such as Annie Golden and Rachel Sweet are inevitable, but Hattori isn't as bubbly. Rather, this is New Wave for angst-free, grown-up spiky hairs reflecting on what once was. Guitars jangle and there are intermittent moments of synth spice. Holding it all together is the raspy prettiness of Hattori's voice.

This is a marvellous disc, one that'll definitely make my Top 10 of the year.


Arlene Hattori
Finding Myself Again
by Karla Ash

There’s an unmistakably ‘80s vibe to Arlene Hattori’s Finding Myself Again that is not as clearly defined as with young retro acts like Franz Ferdinand, VHS or Beta, and the Killers. The song “Give It Up,” for example, is a ‘80s throwback but what artist is it reminiscent of? The guitars are slightly funky, and Hattori sings the repetitive lyrics in a colorless yet cute fashion. She is conjuring the spirits from the ‘80s, without a doubt, however, which ones? The sense of déjà vu that the listener will get from Finding Myself Again is as mysterious as it is exciting. For those old enough to remember, “Give It Up” would’ve slotted nicely on Seattle’s early ‘80s New Wave radio station, 96.5 KYYX. But then again Hattori is actually from that time period. This is no bandwagon jumper; Hattori is a veteran of the genre, and Finding Myself Again explores her mastery of a musical style that is once again the flavor of suburban youth.

These are friendly, toe-tapping pop songs that are innocent without being cheesy. Guitars jangle with a light, breezy touch, and Hattori’s vocals have tremendous range, leaping from the bounciness of “Give It Up” to higher levels of soul on “Right Thing” and “Frustrated Maryann,” which recalls the mood-weaving moments of the Smiths and the Ocean Blue.

Finding Myself Again distinguishes itself from other albums by current female singer/songwriters by having a good heart and old-school rhythms that provide tasty nostalgia.

Find out more about Arlene Hattori at her website,
- by Karla Ash



Arlene Hattori
Finding Myself Again

Once you hear the synth breaks of the funk-pop number "Give It Up," Japanese-American singer/songwriter Arlene Hattori's musical background becomes apparent. You won't be able to tell from the cover photo and booklet design. No, the truth is in the music -- and "Give It Up" reveals all. Hattori is a new wave vocalist at heart, and "Give It Up" is deliciously retro with its danceable riffs and innocent little girl singing. By the time the remix of "When I Looked Into Your Eyes" appears, the guilty fingerprints of '80s appreciation are in clear view. But, unlike some of the youthful neo-new wave acts today, Hattori isn't trying to sound like she's from the era. She is from that time period, and that makes all of the difference. This is authentic new wave. Hattori has a cute, childlike voice (think Rachel Sweet) that is made for the '80s-styled production on this record.

Finding Myself Again is the perfect summer album, loaded with upbeat and relaxing rhythms that capture the innocuous, laidback vibrations of mid-'80s new wave -- somewhere between Strawberry Switchblade and Suzanne Vega. "Thank You for Being My Friend" touches the ears with the kind of positive, gentle messages that went out of style once dark grunge moved in. Check out Hattori's heartfelt singing on "Right Thing"; her voice is soulful and fragile, capturing the emotions of the lyrics without going overboard like so many vocalists nowadays. The moody "Frustrated Maryann" brings back the days of '80s mope rock, but with gorgeous harmonizing that makes it timeless.

My CD player has been saturated with countless '80s retro acts lately; however, Hattori distinguishes herself from the pack by unapologetically not having any modern touches whatsoever. Bless her.
Arlene Hattori:
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Kyrby Raine
- INK19


Arlene Hattori's "Finding Myself Again" goto: to purchase cd's or goto my website at



Long-time Denver musician Arlene Hattori, whose vocal stylings have been compared to Stevie Nicks, explores love, life and the act of rediscovery in her first solo CD release, “Finding Myself Again,” a vivid collection of original compositions best described as, “thoughtful diary in music that provokes one to listen close … a chrysalis of realization.”
2005’s critically acclaimed Finding Myself Again. Drawing comparisons to Kirsty MacColl and vintage Everything But the Girl, Hattori has crafted an album of feel-good jangle rock with danceable touches of ‘80s synthesizer pop. With a voice that falls somewhere between the melancholy rasp of Stevie Nicks and the bittersweet crooning of MacColl, Hattori takes listeners back to the ‘80s without any of the cheese but plenty of emotional depth and warm hooks. To read some really great reviews goto: or click on the "press" link above.

Kenny Newell & his new songs to be released on his debut cd in early 2007. Please take a listen to some sample cuts.