Kurayami Monogatari

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Dual Theory – Life on Display January 15, 2009

Filed under: Dual Theory — solarblade @ 9:40 pm
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lifeondisplay

Track Listing

  1. Losing Grip
  2. Weapon Intangible
  3. Life on Display
  4. Four Years
  5. Better than My Best
  6. The Passion
  7. Freedom
  8. On My Own Again
  9. Answer
  10. Black Rose
  11. Dancing In the Dark
  12. Wait
  13. Song of Last Regrets
  14. The Final Letter
  15. Miss Sunshine
  16. Breakdown (Flood)

1. Losing Grip

I really didn’t expect such an abstract beat to open the album.  It’s kind of hard to describe it fully, but it’s quite the unusual sound.  Going on, this song has a very crazy meaning to it.  With a track called Losing Grip, it’s definitly understandable.  Oh yea, loving the keyboarded drum sound.  Cool way to begin the album.

2. Weapon Intangible

Dang, this song can really get depressing to the listener, I have to point it out.  Like the chorus is metaphorically saying to break his heart, cause it’s inevitable and I have to give props to that for pushing such a topic with sense with it.  Jeeze, Youko your whispering part was fantastic here. 

3. Life on Display

Ahhh, the title track.  Oh, so it’s like people want to see what you do next right?  That’s the kind of vibe I’m getting from this song.  Not many would exactly get the point first listen like me (This is my 4th time listening).  I didn’t really connect much with the song, but its nice musically I got to say.

4. Four Years

Pretty much scoping about life in high school (hence four years).  I have to agree with a lot what their saying because it’s usually the best years and Youko is singing about how they aren’t ready for college even though Youko is in college….(ironic?).  Then there’s this ~I won’t be who you want me to be~ line that’s also a focus point to the song.  Good song though.

5. Better than My Best

I see a little bit of a oops here.  Like, you guys said in the previous that I’m not gonna be who you want me to be and then ebunk that statement with this song, I find it quite amusing actually.  The song has a fun kind of beat to it, but with some unhappy lyrics.  I do like the honesty written with this track, so it’s a good listen me.

6. The Passion

In other words, he wants respect.  Luckily, this doesn’t affect him because ~he’s in his own little world~.  The speaking part was pretty nifty and the rest of the song is like a fantasy to listen to.  It’s funny to find such a happy song in the album full of depressing/sad/emotional tracks.

7. Freedom

Case in point, this track is definitly emotional and pretty sad.  I mean when all he wants is freedom, but all the inner chaos is happening, it’s hard to get that.  Put it to a pretty good sound and you get an A+ track.  Where’s the happiness?

8. On My Own Again

I always wonder if this is a steel drum sound playing with this song…hmmm.  Anyway I think the joys of being single is written here.  Other words, Youko and Hunter is pretty much bombing the other person.  Even more better is this whole fun sound, I personally love the entire thing, it’s hook after hook.  If there’s one song to listen from them, it’s this one. 

9. Answer

I think the darkest song in both music and lyrics, is Answer.  I really enjoyed the chanting in the background with Youko’s deeper voice.  It sent chills down my spine here.  OMG for big words like ~condenscending~ in the chorus it really kind of took a life on its own.  The guitar solo was really freaky too mwahaha.  Using metaphors a lot again, I think he made his point, hmm was this directed to anyone? o.0  Oh yea, this would make a great music video IMO

10. Black Rose

I like the arpeggio opening with Black Rose and then turns into a pretty rad pop track.  Once again using a metaphor ~Life is like a black rose~ as the main theme which is nice, but it’s so difficult to follow because the music is covering Youko and the chorus was fast…I still loved what I understood from it and the whole ~wither and die~ thing added it up for me.

11. Dancing In the Dark

I considered this a slower version of “Black Rose” but with strings played on ze keyboard.  I totally laughed a little when Hunter did the whole ~and he wish~ part in the bridge.  It was like random, but random needed since Youko prolly would sound confusing without it.  There’s something simplistic about the song that I really like.  Lyrics are once again kind of sad and lonesome, but how can you not like a song like this.

12. Wait

I think Youko’s strongest guitar playing is definitly apparant here by the opening.  Someone doesn’t exactly have a lot of patience because OMG they can’t take the whole waiting (hence the title).  ~If I was a Wiseman, I’d give up all hope~ talk about going far in their moods.  I’d definitly would hear this on the radio, I mean if it was on it, this’d be the song to be mainstream.  Wait, I love the double singing as well I have to note that. 

13. Song of Last Regrets

For being a song of Last Regrets, this wouldn’t have been my initial style to put it too.  It’s pretty upbeat, but the lyrics are amazingly depressing once again.  Sounds like one of them have been hurt by someone and either they are hurting hard or embarassed much.  I might be overly exaggerating this, but is suicide mentioned here? Maybe metaphorically?

14. The Final Letter

This song has such a nice sound with the piano melody going on and Youko’s more calmer vocals.  Songs topic?: break-up.  I like the way the chorus was written out and it’s pretty much basic and easy to follow.  The bridge though was great IMO.  Y’know there is one thing I do have a problem and that’s the basicness of it…I mean we know she’s gettin dumped…do we need anymore hints at it LOL

15. Miss Sunshine

Oddly, this track is the sore thumb of the album.  It sounds like a song you would hear when you wake up in the morning, which is nice since it has that dreaminess and Youko shows off a calm vocal sound which I have to give props to.  Even better is that Youko and Hunter harmonize almost perfectly here.  It’s their strongest track IMO on the album.

16. Breakdown (Flood)

Wait, there’s actual synth and this beat sounds like “Losing Grip” at first then this awesome synth beat comes in.  Youko is once again letting his guitar speak, totally cool.  All of  the Breakdown side is a guitar solo which means it’s the interlude before the vocal track Flood.  Flood finishes this long album up, but it kind of comes short.  I was expecting a more crazier finish since Breakdown was off the wall.  I think it precedes “Rockyhaven” since the similarities.  Jeeze, way to make water seem murderous…~The water is toxic~…..

Tracks Recommended

  •  On My Own Again
  • Miss Sunshine
  • Answer
  • Freedom
  • Weapon Intangible

What a dark album.  Life on Display was what it was to them at the time I think.  Very honest and angsty.  Most of the songs were either a sad or evil topic which was surprising, especially after the EP.  Some of the meanings would pass over people’s head because of the upbeat sounds which included drums this time.  It’s a good album, but be prepared to get a little emotional.

 

Yousei Teikoku – Irodori no Nai Sekai

Filed under: Yousei Teikoku — solarblade @ 7:18 am
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irodorinonaisekai

Track Listing

  1. Irodori no Nai Sekai
  2. Destrudo
  3. Valtica
  4. Tooi Maboroshi
  5. Alte Burg
  6. Irodori no Nai Sekai <instrumental>

1. Irodori no Nai Sekai

I actually am surprised at the pop sound that Yousei Teikoku went for with the main track.  It’s definitly got that strings and piano thing down, but I was expecting something hard for the ending theme for Kurokami.  Luckily, this beats the last single A-side wholeheartedly.  Yui sounds so much better as well. 

2. Destrudo

I kinda knew this would’ve be a more aggressive track from them.  Destrudo shows Yui in a pretty hectic sound and she’s fearing for her life because the way she’s singing it is very dark.  The chorus though is where she shines, she’s got that nice lolita-like tone that just works with the song.  Right now this is my favorite.

3. Valtica

Valtica reminds me of their “GOTHIC LOLITA PROPAGANDA”  stuff and a bit of “Destrudo” as well, but has some more synth and a little bit more of hope-like tone in the chorus.  Yui’s vocals do take a hit with the higher register, but the music just sounds like something pulled from a Mortal Kombat movie. 

4. Tooi Maboroshi

I guess they took a note from Hikki and made the song very ethereal.  In my thoughts, there’s something really dark about the lyrics and sounds and vocals of the song which is nice.  The arrangement doesn’t exactly change much which is its downfall.  It’s kind of like “Vermillion Tiara” though.

5. Alte Burg

A rising sound of strings open the track up and just instills fear and then holy hell does the song go into metal mode.  Like it’s aggressive, fast, and has some of the craziest hooks found in a Yousei song.  I have to say this track is by far their best track so far.  Yui’s vocals also add a sense of misery which is amazing here.

 

 

Yousei’s quote on quote “mini-album” definitly continues a good reign of sound.  A few songs kind of did sound similar to past tracks, but the rest were just what I wanted since Yousei has been taking a more rock-side into their music, it’s just wow.  I still would call this a single, wanna know why?  The instrumental nuff’ said.

 

Kalafina – sprinter/ARIA

Filed under: Kalafina — solarblade @ 6:01 am
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Track Listing

  1. sprinter
  2. ARIA
  3. oblivious -instrumental-

1. sprinter

Or as I like to call it, the song that got me into Kalafina in the first place.  It is a pretty mainstream track actually, having this awesome classical sound and a rock sound which definitly surprised me as Yuki Kajiura had something to do with this.  Also there’s a 4th member hidden in the group who knew, but she isn’t on the cover for “fairytale”?  Anyways the ladies have super strong vocals and just had this exciting aura about them.  Great song

2. ARIA

ARIA though is a lot of chanting at the beginning and then one of them starts to singing with the chanting in the background.  I did find the song too similar to “oblivious” which doesn’t help at all, but at how mysterious and calm it was, it’s a good listen one way or another.

 

 

Kalafina’s 2nd single was definitly smokin’.  sprinter is such a catch and how they combined Yuki’s more softer spoken sounds with this amzing rock sound just worked really good with them.  ARIA though like “oblivious” is alright, but not their best work to date.

 

Shoko Nakagawa – Strawberry melody

Filed under: Shoko Nakagawa — solarblade @ 5:32 am
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strawberrymelody

Track Listing

  1. Strawberry melody
  2. Pokemon Nari Kiri Sunday
  3. Dear my saint-girl
  4. Strawberry melody (Original Karaoke)

1. Strawberry melody

I guess I wasn’t too shocked that Shoko would pull something like this.  It’s amazingly girly and just very bubblegum like.  The verses were less, which is good, but c’mon I’m a guy, there’s a line that was crossed in this song.  I guess it’s better than to listen to Momoi covering this track icky.

2. Pokemon Nari Kiri Sunday

Here we go again…This song just does not make sense with me.  I mean does she have an obsession with Pokemon?  The music is your volley of cute synth and crazy Shoko vocals which she kind of switches of talking and singing.  Like it’s so freaky to listen to…maybe it’ll warm up to me, because it’s so silly.

3. Dear my saint-girl

Ending the single on a better term, is definitly this track.  Shoko’s also taking to a somewhat of a pop ballad.  I have to say she’s done some good with the single here.  It’s got some of the cutesy leftover but it isn’t overbearing unlike two other tracks *cough*. 

 

 

I actually dislike this single even moreso than her debut single…surprised eh?  Something about Strawberry melody just turned me off immediatly, Pokemon Nari Kiri Sunday was a small step up but the cute factor was just somewhat unbearable.  Dear my saint-girl was the best one for sure, but it’s not enough to say *totally going on my iPod*

 

 

 

 

Chiaki Ishikawa – Prototype

Filed under: Chiaki Ishikawa — solarblade @ 4:49 am
Tags: , ,

cishikawa-prototype

Track Listing

  1. Prototype
  2. squall
  3. Prototype  (without Vocal)
  4. squall (without Vocal)

1. Prototype

I have to say that I really hate the freaky voice thing starting the song up.  Luckily when Chiaki starts singing and the music comes in, the song just gets epic.  That’s because of its tie-in to GUNDAM.  I think Chiaki’s vocals are pretty damn strong and even though the song lacks any kind of hook, the usual GUNDAM songs have, this was a pretty good ending theme.

2. squall

Honestly, I think squall should’ve been the ending theme.  It’s more of a epic pop track.  I actually like this song a lot more than “Prototype” just because Chiaki sounds more interested and amazing with the guitar sounds.  Definitly the highlight of the single.

 

 

Like, Prototype was a good experience.  Maybe if Prototype had a good hook to it, I would’ve liked more, but that’s where squall came in and filled up that void quickly.  Sadly, we might not get another release from her in a while since her sporadic single releases are far in between.

 

 

Chihiro Onitsuka – Gekkou

Filed under: Chihiro Onitsuka — solarblade @ 4:09 am
Tags: , ,

gekkouchi

Track Listing

  1. Gekkou
  2. Arrow of Pain
  3. Gekkou (Instrumental)

1. Gekkou

Wow, Gekkou is a pretty ballad from Chihiro.  There’s a gorgeous piano melody aligned with some strings in the background.  I think this showed more of what Chihiro can do as a singer and it’s a great 2nd A-side.  How she sings the chorus is great even though her English is kind of bad, but she’s good with what she has in the song.

2. Arrow of Pain

I didn’t expect Arrow of Pain to be a ballad either, but it’s just as emotional as “Gekkou”.  Even though it isn’t as extravagant as the A-side, Arrow of Pain kind of has a mainstream sound with the minor synth inclusion during the song, creating a spacey sound, but it isn’t too tacked on.  Alright B-side.

 

 

Chihiro’s 2nd single was ballad heavy for sure.  Gekkou was the better because of how flowing it all was.  Arrow of Pain was still good, just a little less memorable because of less sounds, but it gets an album version on “INSOMNIA” wonder if it’ll be better.