Mei Semones

"Wakare No Kotoba" (Bayonet)

Contact Jacob Daneman about Mei Semones

Today, Brooklyn-via-Ann Arbor musician Mei Semones announces her signing to Bayonet Records, and presents her new single/video, “Wakare No Kotoba.” Plinking guitar tones and asymmetrical time signatures exemplify Semones’ forays into angular indie rock, most evident on “Wakare No Kotoba.” Its wide-interval arpeggios in odd meters are some of the most technically difficult guitar work Mei has ever implemented in her songwriting. Translated to “parting words” in English, the self-described “anti-love song,” sung half in English and half in Japanese, serves as a farewell to a toxic friendship, complete with orchestral swells and crashing guitars.


The accompanying “Wakare No Kotoba” — directed by Hayden Fralin — showcases Semones around her homebase of Brooklyn, New York. From apartment interiors and city streets to the band’s rehearsal space and subsequent gigs, the “Wakare No Kotoba” video is anchored by the song’s flitting guitar. By the video’s end, Semones is alone in the woods, just her and her ever-reliable instrument.


Of the “Wakare No Kotoba” video, Semones says: “Thanks so much to Hayden Fralin, who directed the video, for being down to tear down his apartment for it!! We wanted to capture the feeling of what was happening in my life when I was writing the song — packing up to move to Brooklyn, falling out with a friend, working on music. Sometimes what inspires a song is a negative experience, but what I love most about this video is that it shows the positive side of what comes after — being able to play it with my lovely band.”


Originally from Ann Arbor, Michigan, Semones began playing music at a young age, starting out on piano at age four before moving to electric guitar at age eleven. After playing jazz guitar in high school, she went on to study guitar performance with a jazz focus at Berklee College of Music. College is where she met her current bandmates, including string players Noah Leong and Claudius Agrippa, whose respective viola and violin add softness and multidimensionality to Mei’s intricate guitar work. After releasing a slew of singles and an EP in 2022, coinciding with her move to New York City, Mei and her band have since gone on to collaborate with post-bossa balladeer John Roseboro, and embarked on their first-ever tour with the melodic rock outfit Raavi.


Watch for more to come from Mei Semones in 2024.


    Jan 25, 2024
    Brooklyn, NY
    Baby's All Right