Nariaki Obukuro bristles when I suggest he makes J-pop. He prefers his music being described as J-pop-adjacent.

Yet here we are sitting in a spacious room at Sony Music Japan’s office in Akasaka, and the singer-songwriter has worked extensively with J-pop queen, Hikaru Utada. Still, Obukuro can’t commit to the idea he makes J-pop. Why? “It’s awful,” he says with a laugh.

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