b. 28 August 1976, Osaka, Japan. The sleeve of Noriko’s second album, 2001’s Shojo Toshi, features the Japanese musician shooting a baguette at a Japanese office worker and skateboarding in her underwear. On the follow-up, Hard Ni Sasete, a miniature Noriko is depicted tweaking the nipples and tickling the armpits of a blonde, pouting model and bending over a car whilst sucking her thumb in a seeming homage to the photos of Araki Nobuyoshi. Thankfully, her music is equal in its eccentricity to such imagery, and is set apart by its gauche and awkward loveliness. Frequently compared to Kate Bush and Björk, Noriko contorts computers, pianos and beats into strangely beautiful pop songs. Despite the musician’s apparent playfulness and superficial quirkiness, Noriko’s music is actually peculiarly melancholic with the singer’s sombre voice being processed over her distressed, distressing compositions. Her most recent music has been released by the iconic Austrian Mego imprint, more usually associated with the digital experimentalism of Farmers Manual and Fennesz. Mego label boss Peter Rehberg (aka Pita) was, thus, prompted to declare Noriko’s recordings ‘100% nerdy glitch-boy free’. The singer, whose first live performance is reported to have ended in disaster after she passed out from drinking too much alcohol, is also a member of art and design collective SlideLab.