Kurayami Monogatari

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POLYSICS – Shout Aloud!/Beat Flash March 31, 2009

Filed under: POLYSICS — solarblade @ 10:12 am
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shout-aloud

Track Listing

  1. Shout Aloud!
  2. Beat Flash
  3. United

1. Shout Aloud!

OMFG!  You don’t know how much I love this song.  It’s so raw and yet the futuristic undertones is just amazing.  KAYO (the keyboardist/vocoder voice) is lifeless but in a way that it makes the song sound more freaky and absurd.  Even when FUMI adds in they both sound quite dead.  HAYASHI is the fast paced singer/yelper which excites the song.  YANO though wins this track with his fast drumming.  Why this song owns beats me, but it’s my favorite and first POLYSICS song.

2. Beat Flash

It’s funny that the PV of “Shout Aloud!” ended with a small snippet of the beginning of Beat Flash.  Now including a more 8-bit sound with their punk rock sound, it really sounds fresh and it sounds really nice.  It isn’t exactly as super as the other A-side.  The random screaming bothers me just a little bit, but some parts are quite catchy.

3. United

Ok, United is the only song on the single to reach over 3 minutes.  Wow…Anyways United is definitly their most serious song on the single because it isn’ t wild as like the other two tracks which is a nice breath of air.  KAYO’s synth skills are crazy well as well because it sounded awesome with the rest of the band.  Kind of sucks the ladies weren’t featured but that’s all right.  Great song.

 

 

POLYSICS kickstarts a new era with a great start.  Shout Aloud! was just amazing and full of spice and synth love everyhwere.  Beat Flash was a bit annoying, but I love the beginning.  United though was just amazingly cool and something that isn’t crazy. 

 

Masami Mitsuoka – Distance Love/I am March 30, 2009

Filed under: Masami Mitsuoka — solarblade @ 10:58 pm

cd1

Track Listing

  1. Distance Love
  2. I am
  3. OVER THERE
  4. Distance Love -instrumental-
  5. JACK POT (CD Only bonus)

1. Distance Love

I thought it was going to be a ballad, with that piano opening it was running through my mind.  Well, it is but more like a power ballad because there’s a lot of guitars and synths.  I’ve heard the Ayu similarities and actually it’s quite interesting to hear Masami channel this style of music.  It’s pretty good for a loud track hahaha!

2. I am

I am has a pretty interesting sound and the music is aggressive and there’s some catchy beats as well.  Her voice can seem somewhat too flat for a song like this but I enjoyed her try at this track because it does show some power in her voice carried with an electro kind of sound. 

3. OVER THERE

OVER THERE seems to be your typical rock song but I found her voice more easier to take from this song than the last song.  Sadly, she suffers from the no emotion disease and that’s why I enjoyed “I am” a bit more than it.  The music though was reall good and Masami through the verses was well, it’s just everything in the chorus was lacking.

4. JACK POT

JACK POT though was definitly Ayu-ish.  I mean Masami almost sounded like Ayu and the song itself sounded a bit like “(don’t)leave me alone”.  Now this can come as a good sign or a bad sign, it depends on what your take on it.  We also see Masami sing pretty fast which is another of Ayu’s trademarks.  Interesting song.

 

 

First things first, this single tops “Hana” ten fold.  The songs finally captured Masami in a good way and even Masami sang so much better with power and emotion (minus “OVER THERE”).  Still, is this the second coming of Ayu?  Maybe…but it’ll definitly take time to let things settle in.

 

Ayaka Hirahara – Kodoku no Mukou

Filed under: Ayaka Hirahara — solarblade @ 10:33 pm

kodoku

Track Listing

  1. Kodoku no Mukou
  2. Ichibanboshi
  3. Kodoku no Mukou ~Vocal-Less Track~
  4. Ichibanboshi ~Vocal-Less Track~

1. Kodoku no Mukou

When do we not get a ballad from her?  I mean it’s kind of hard to seperate the tracks from each other.  Kodoku no Mukou features some pretty nice and flowing strings with piano and a band to back things up.  Now amongst the other singles she’s done so far this era…this might come as a disappointment because she’s already pulled the ballad card too many times and her voice isn’t as amazing as they were either.

2. Ichibanboshi

However, Ichibanboshi is a bit more upbeat and in the background you hear kids playing in the background.  Though the shocking thing is that this song is over 6 minutes which can be bad, but to me this was so much better than “Kodoku no Mukou”  The beautiful strings and piano are once again here, but the percussion makes a bigger appearance to make things so much better.  Even the guitar solo was nice.

 

 

Right now, Kodoku no Mukou is my least favorite of her A-sides, but Ichibanboshi is my favorite B-side.  So you guys know where I stand on this single.  Other words, it practically evened out at the end. 

 

HIGH and MIGHTY COLOR – DIVE into YOURSELF

Filed under: HIGH and MIGHTY COLOR — solarblade @ 10:21 pm

diveintoyourself

Track Listing

  1. DIVE into YOURSELF
  2. Flying Music
  3. Haitoku no Jounetsu ~Urgent Immoral Passion Mix~
  4. DIVE into YOURSELF (Less Vocal Track)

1. DIVE into YOURSELF

Are we serious?  DIVE into YOURSELF is definitly a song that sounds pretty strange.  Yuusuke is actually singing again which isn’t surprising, but the song doesn’t seem to stack along with their past tracks.  I mean if majority of the chorus is a bunch of ~whoooooas~ it’s not exactly called a good track.  It’s better than “STYLE” for sure but still not that great.

2. Flying Music

Flying Music brings out a more harder rock sound from the band.  Already it’s way better than the A-side because it just rocks out right and has a great mood throughout.  Maaki shows a lot of free-spirited emotion and Yuusuke’s parts are well, but it doesn’t exactly fit well with Maaki’s echoey vocals.  Pretty great B-side from them.

3. Haitoku no Jounetsu ~Urgent Immoral Passion Mix~

Remember Haitoku no Jounetsu from their last album, “Gou on PROGRESSIVE”?  Yeah, well they decided to make a remix out of that track.  I think they fixed the issues that were plaguing the original track which is fortunate because everything just didn’t mesh right, but it seems that they added some needed parts and synths to make it sound more complete.  GREAT!

 

 

HandMC’s first single for the “San” era was alright, not the best they’ve released.  The main track was pretty empty on the lyrical side of things and probably was a bad idea to release as an A-side.  That being said, clearly the A-side should’ve gone to Flying Music as it was much more cohesive and fun to listen to.  The remix brought much needed support to the album track.  I’d get the single for the 2 latter songs though

 

supercell feat. Miku Hatsune – melt

Filed under: supercell — solarblade @ 1:35 am
Tags: , , , ,

melt

Track Listing

  1. melt
  2. melt (Karaoke ver.)
  3. Kimi wo Wasurenai
  4. Kimi wo Wasurenai (Arranged ver.)

1. melt

I think melt was definitly something I would’ve expected because Miku isn’t a real person just a synth voice.  I’m not sure why the length is so short because it’s only above a little over 2 minutes.  Not exactly A-side length for sure.  Now Miku’s voice is probably tough to handle because it’s high-pitched and the song is really odd for this style of singing.  Seems a little low-produced but it isn’t terrible.

2. Kimi wo Wasurenai

I’m surprised to see piano begin the B-side.  It definitly wasn’t what I was expecting and Miku’s voice is quieted down a little bit so her voice wouldn’t disrupt the mood.  The higher notes are really tight and a little bothersome, but for a ballad this actually kind of worked.  Surprisingly good for a vocaloid.

3. Kimi wo Wasurenai (Arrange ver.)

Instead of the piano-based original, it seems to be a more asian-influenced and Miku’s voice seems a lot more deeper as well which confused me at first, but it seems to fit again.  What was replaced in light of the smooth sounds is very different.  Marching drums, some orgel, and some other knick-knacks.  I kind of liked this version of it more actually hmmm.

 

 

melt was alright for the single.  I mean melt was OK, but ended way too soon to have a lasting effect on me.  Kimi wo Wasurenai, both versions were definitly the highlights of the single showing what ballads really do.  Now I’m not considering this as a J-tek thing, but it’s pretty close.  Good single..

 

Mai Kuraki – PUZZLE/Revive March 29, 2009

Filed under: Mai Kuraki — solarblade @ 2:20 am
Tags: , , ,

Track Listing

  1. PUZZLE
  2. Revive
  3. THE ROSE ~melody in the sky~ “Live Rehearsal Session”
  4. PUZZLE -instrumental-
  5. Revive -instrumental-

1. PUZZLE

I don’t think I would’ve believed Mai to pull something like this.  I mean it starts with a door shutting and something rapping with Mai.  There’s a lot of synth in this song…moreso than a bunch of other tracks.  I think she could’ve done without the guy, but this song is definitly super and one of the memorable ones.

2. Revive

Revive though simply brings some more life into the single by sounding latin once again.  I’ve always liked her latin tracks and Revive does not disappoint at all.  It might be a little bland in originality and it might just be a little boring, but I can’t resist getting up and dancing along with the song.

3. THE ROSE ~melody in the sky~ “Live Rehearsal Session”

Remember this track from Mai’s sophomore album, “PERFECT CRIME”?  Well, I do since I reviewed that last, hahaha.  If you remember, THE ROSE is a short track over 2 minutes and featured all English lyrics.  Instead of the cute strings and such, it’s replaced with an all-out acoustic feel and Mai obviously resang this as well because her English has definitly gotten better with this song and she sounds real nice.  Great touch on an old song.

 

 

Yes!  Mai-K’s first single of the new era kicked things off great.  PUZZLE was definitly fresh and surprisingly really good especially after “touch Me!” this was great.  Revive was alright, maybe a little too easy to guess but good otherwise and going back to revisit an older track and make it better was amazing.  It isn’t the perfect single, but it’s really good.

 

Nami Tamaki – GIVE ME UP

Filed under: Nami Tamaki — solarblade @ 1:07 am
Tags: , , ,

givemeup

Track Listing

  1. GIVE ME UP
  2. Ichizu na Negai
  3. in my life (CD Type B only)
  4. Kanojo (CD Type C Only)
  5. GIVE ME UP (Instrumental)

1. GIVE ME UP

Let me set this straight, GIVE ME UP is not a full cover of the Michael Fortunati track, it only recycles the chorus and everything else is original.  That being said, this is a pretty fun track giving the fact she’s under a new label.  At first I didn’t exactly like it because it was too bubblegum for my tastes, but after the seeing the PV and hearing the originals and w’s take of the track.  It turns out I really enjoy it. 

2. Ichizu na Negai

Things go downhill when we reach the B-sides.  On all of the versions of the single, Ichizu na Negai is the main B-side.  Now it’s hard to really describe the sound of it because it’s kind of a fusion of funk and urban.  I just found this to be a little on the boring side as it just didn’t do anything for me. 

3. in my life

I guess UNIVERSAL-J was trying to cash on in the fact that Nami does good on ballads, but sadly it turns out to be on bad track.  I mean it’s one thing to hear her sing her heart out in last single’s “Promise”, but they made her hit these really high notes that was just a bit painful.  She’s definitly not made for that (at least not anymore).  The other parts of the song are nice to listen to and she carries it well, but that chorus just destroyed the song.

4. Kanojo

 However, this single is basically saved by the Type C song.  It’s kind of like R&B with the thumps and snapping and major use of the piano.  Of course Nami is still using bad high notes and she’s swooping them a lot, but it’s so much better than listening to “in my life”.   One of the most calm songs I’ve grown to like.

 

 

I’m not exactly sure where they are trying to steer Nami in, but GIVE ME UP was definitly not the greatest of singles.  In fact, it might by next to “MY WAY/Sunrize” in worst single.  Now GIVE ME UP is oddly cutesy and catchy and even though it’s a pseudo-cover it’s still good.  Kanojo was also pretty catchy and showed off a more lighter R&B side.  Even though I can see the company pushing her this way.  Ichizu na Negai was uhm…how do you say….boring!  Like she’s already tried urban sort of with “Gokigendaze” and that came out OK, but this was just not what I wanting.  in my life…could be the worst ballad of her career…Anyways, if she plans to make a real future with UNIVERSAL-J, step the game out ten fold please…

 

Nami Tamaki – REPRODUCT BEST March 27, 2009

Filed under: Nami Tamaki — solarblade @ 8:24 pm
Tags: , , , ,

reproduct-best

Track Listing

  1. Brightdown -Electrostatics Mix-
  2. Prayer -Brilhando Mix-
  3. Sanctuary -Instantation Mix-
  4. Realize -KZ Strictly Uptempo Mix-
  5. Heroine -Inner Light Mix-
  6. Promise -Dub’s Sentimental dub Mix-
  7. Fortune Reproduction ~Radiata Mix~
  8. Result -Drive You Crazy Mix-
  9. Shining Star ☆Wasurenai Kara☆ -Galaxy Sympathy Mix-
  10. MY WAY Reproduction -Original Mix-
  11. Reason Reproduction ~flash-forward mix~
  12. CROSS SEASON -After Graduation Mix-
  13. Believe -Evidence01 Mix-
  14. Daitan ni Ikimashou ↑Heart & Soul↑ -UK Club Mix- (bonus track)
  15. Believe -JXL Deep Vocal Mix- (bonus track)

1. Brightdown -Electrostatics Mix-

I guess it’s fair to start off the album with an interesting track.  Instead of the hard synth rock sound the original, they threw out the rock and made the song into a more synthy mix.  I think the biggest problem that came from this remix is that it’s just the chorus playing and that’s it.  It could’ve been more if they tried harder, but they didn’t.

2. Prayer -Brilhando Mix-

I love the aggressive beat that begins our next remix.  At first, you won’t even remember the ad-libbing before Nami comes in.  I do love that the synth made a sound like an electric guitar and then there’s this 80’s like funk sound that made it so much cooler.  Honestly though they should’ve stuck with the “Programless Beat Remix” since that was an epic remix right there.

3. Sanctuary -Instantation Mix-

I have to say, Sanctuary’s remix actually fit because it’s a bit more funky and jazztastic than the original which surprised me.  Everything seemed so nicely done and gave the original a much needed interest boost in this case.  I mean they even added a guitar solo, definitly one of the best new remixes on the album.

4. Realize -KZ Strictly Uptempo Mix-

Realize’s Remix is definitly an old one for sure (not the oldest).  It still carries that laidback funk sound.  It’s funny that it’s supposed to be uptempo but it turns out to be slower than the original.  I actually thought it fitted really well next to “Sanctuary” because they seem to be somewhat alike, but enough to be different from each other.

5. Heroine -Inner Light Mix-

I thought it started out pretty well with the piano line, but when the shuffling beat came in, it kind of destroyed that mood and decided to take the song in a different way.  Don’t get me wrong, I do like the overall mood of the song, but Heroine isn’t the type of song to be really remixed and this shows how awkward it is to hear this track.  Especially the chorus!

6. Promise -Dub’s Sentimental dub Mix-

Same thing with Promise.  Promise isn’t exactly the type of song to really be getting a remix.  It’s still a ballad, but it’s given a really, really light reggae beat that tries to make the song move a bit more.  I rarely like Dub’s tracks anyway and somehow this remix actually fit the mood of Promise.  Strange, but fitting.

7. Fortune Reproduction ~Radiata Mix~

Kind of seems strange to see Fortune’s only remix appear here as it was changed from that hyper dance track to this beautifully played remix from “Radiata Stories”.  Like another track coming up soon, hearing a ballad version of said track was strange, but it turns out to be more eventful and more emotional.  One of her best remixes in my opinion.

8. Result -Drive You Crazy Mix-

I actually didn’t expect a Result remix at all because well, it’s too hardcore to really be giving a remix and then we got this strange remix out of it.  It’s pretty aggressive, but it doesn’t follow the song around much which is weird.  I like how the synths swerve in and out of the track and Nami though being covered when it gets louder kind of displeases me.  It might just be ok, but right now I’m getting a headache outta this one.

9. Shining Star ☆Wasurenai Kara☆ -Galaxy Sympathy Mix-

I guess they wanted a better remix then the one from “Get Wild”.  Actually this sounded so much more better than that by a longshot.  I get a feel of 80’s whenever the song pops up.  It’s funny how the guitar and synth are playing off of each other and Nami is filtered out.  I feel like I’m having a fun time with this remix and I love it.

10. MY WAY Reproduction -Original Mix-

Then we get into some old remixes that ended off the albums (except Speciality because it didn’t have a finishing remix).  Well MY WAY wasn’t originally on “Don’t Stay” but since Speciality didn’t have any it ended Don’t Stay instead.  I was really happy to see this remix because what else could you really do with MY WAY anyways since the original is a horrible mess.  Definitly made the album finish good and seeing it here is great. 

11. Reason Reproduction ~flash-forward mix~

Ending “Make Progress” Reason’s remix was a bit meh, but fitting to ending the album which was basically all dance tracks.  I’m still thinking of the original whenever I hear this and think the remixers just stripped a few things and added more synths.  Not the best way to go around doing things but w/e.

12. CROSS SEASON -After Graduation Mix-

Everyone knows me hate for this track.  It totally screwed up Don’t Stay IMO.  You could’ve just stuck on the damn original and have been fine.  So we end up with this generic track that just doesn’t even sound right even on this album.  I’m not sure why, but I still love the original way more than this track.  Definitly the most poorest of the old remixes.

13. Believe -Evidence01 Mix-

As much as I like the “FREEDOM G CONTROL MIX”, this was also a great inclusion.  Just like Fortune earlier on, they switched the powerhouse of a dance track into a flowing orchestration of sorts.  I have always liked how it ended the album just right.  I think it’d make a great ending to a video game *cough* Kingdom Hearts *cough* and made a great ending to the album.

14. Daitan ni Ikimashou ↑Heart & Soul↑ -UK Club Mix-

Yeah, the bonus tracks starting with this one is so terribly bad. Like it doesn’t go anywhere for me and seriously what’s with the repetition. Everything is so random and even then when the chorus comes it’s so muffled and bad.  Definitly worse than “CROSS SEASON’s remix” 

15. Believe -JXL Deep Vocal Mix-

Wow, Believe twice on a remix album?  How shocking!  I already find this a more fun track with the clapping beats and the synths that are all over the place.  It takes a while to get the vocals really going, but when she comes in, it just sounds pretty cool and catchy.  Good remix overall, but maybe a little too long…

Tracks Recommended

  •  Fortune Reproduction ~Radiata Mix~
  • MY WAY Reproduction -Original Mix-
  • Shining Star ☆Wasurenai Kara☆ -Galaxy Sympathy Mix-
  • Sanctuary -Instantation Mix-
  • Believe -Evidence01 Mix-

Song of Avoidance

  • Daitan ni Ikimashou ↑Heart & Soul↑ -UK Club Mix-

For the first remix album I reviewed, I definitly wanted to review this one.  The new remixes for the most part showed that SONY doesn’t really care anymore, but they threw something for her to pass her by. It’s nice to see some of the more memorable remixes of her past, but I think they missed on bringing the bigger remixes.  Good remix album, but just needed a little more work.

 

the end of genesis T.M.Revolution turbo type-d – Suite Season

Filed under: T.M.Revolution — solarblade @ 2:09 am
Tags: , , , , , , ,

suite season

Track Listing

  1. Prologue~KAGEROH~Chapter#1
  2. Kageroh
  3. Hajimaru Nami
  4. Nocturne~GEKKOH~Chapter#2
  5. Gekkoh
  6. Serenade~winter dust~Chapter#3
  7. Setsugen ~winter dust~
  8. Kaze no Yukue
  9. Epilogue~KAGEROH~Chapter#4

1. Prologue~KAGEROH~Chapter#1

I love the string opening to this album.  It’s funny how the chords reminded me a little of “Mirrorcle World” but when Daisuke comes in with the keyboarded sounds, it was more like something I’d hear from Final Fantasy.  As strange as it seems, it gets more powerful and fierce with the sound before ending it with a held note that leads to our first track.

2. Kageroh

As much as I like the duo, this doesn’t exactly spark my interest because I’m used to all of the sounds already.  Takanori took the verses pretty smoothly, but the sound just came as too typical, but at least it was interesting to see things connect in the song.  Not the best, but ok.

3. Hajimaru Nami

The first thing that pops in my head about the song is that this is one strong song.  The old Daisuke is starting to fade away which is nice because I really needed to move away from it.  The bridge though was so damn awesome and powerful with the electric guitar.  Though the solo in the middle was sweet though.  Best song off the album.

4. Nocturne~GEKKOH~Chapter#2

Our next interlude or “chapter” is a lot more calmer and played out beautifully with a lot of woodwinds and strings.  Once again bringing a kind of regal kind of sound.  Definitly a good bridge to our next track.

5. Gekkoh

Our next track was the 2nd A-side of the era and is more laid-back and practically became a nice ballad that isn’t all just acoustic.  Though the bridge and chorus is otherwise not really a ballad, but I actually enjoyed this a lot.  If it was on any other album from here on out, it would be really bad considering who’s arranging the song, but on here it fitted nicely, maybe ended too quickly…probably is why the song is longer on its single then on here.

6. Serenade~winter dust~Chapter#3

Serenade continues off from Nocturne did with strings and woodwinds again playing a different melody this time.  I love the fact the song had a pretty calm exterior, but had a sense of unevening darkness as well.  Definitly my favorite interlude.

7. Setsugen ~winter dust~

Representing the last A-side of the era, Setsugen is kind of between the singles in sound.  It isn’t as fast-paced as “Kageroh” nor it isn’t as slow as “Gekkoh” which is oddly interesting, but the song came off as dry and nothing particular was that memorable about it.  Just seemed very typical as song of Takanori and Daisuke’s.

8. Kaze no Yukue

Kaze no Yukue to me was probably placed in the wrong spot of the album, but I do love the piano and strings inclusion.  Other than that, there really isn’t too much to write about it like I did already with the past tracks that had the same formula.  *shrugs*

9. Epilogue~KAGEROH~Chapter#4

The last track is also the longest of the Chapters reaching over 2 minutes.  Once again I’m hearing the same exact thing as I did when we began the album.  Not exactly the most original idea, but being a tad longer did flesh out the track so much more.  Better than the opening IMO

Tracks Recommended

  •  Hajimaru Nami
  • Gekkoh
  • Serenade~winter dust~Chapter#3

Song of Avoidance

  • Setsugen ~winter dust~

For being a pseudo release on T.M.Revolution’s list, Suite Season isn’t too much to talk about.  The interludes were a bit too many and the songs once again lacked true originality in sound but iono maybe I’ll enjoy it.  After this album, Daisuke and Takanori kind of drifted away from each other and went seperate ways for a while.  I would to, at least we got to see Daisuke in this era’s PV’s

 

D – BIRTH March 26, 2009

Filed under: D — solarblade @ 8:00 pm
Tags: , ,

birth

Track Listing

  1. BIRTH
  2. Musou Hana
  3. Rebellion (Jacket B only)
  4. Solid heart (Jacket C only)
  5. BIRTH (Voiceless)

1. BIRTH

Ok, for a debut under the avex label, this song really represented D in a great way.  I love the strings opening and the hardass guitars that filled out the song.  Obviously ASAGI sounds a lot better than in the indies days because he’s not exactly doing the freaky growl thing.  The guitar solo was one of Ruiza’s best.  Definitly the song to kick start the era.

2. Musou Hana

Musou Hana though was basically almost as rock hard as “BIRTH” but some parts are pretty sweet like ASAGI’s talking parts during the crazy band parts.  Sometimes the band gets a little too flustered and things get drowned out.  It’s definitly a hard track, I’ll give it that.

3. Rebellion

Rebellion only appears on the Jacket B version.  I think Rebellion continues this crazy sound and drives it even further with this arrangement.  Oddly enough, I really enjoyed this song a lot because it’s maniacal but played it off well with ASAGI’s interesting vocals.  The chanting though to me sounds like gibberish, it might actually be, but I like it.  Even Ruiza’s solo was awesome.  Good song.

4. Solid heart

However, on the Jacket C version of the single, we get Solid heart and what a track it is.  It does sound a bit more tame (in v-kei words).  It’s still fierce and has the growly chants.  ASAGI’s vocals is strange because he’s like holding it and dropping tone, even the chorus has it still.  It shows he’s got some interesting properties and honestly it’s one of the bands coolest tracks.  Love it!

 

 

D’s debut under avex (as odd as that sounds) was pretty cool.  I really love BIRTH.  The strings and hard sound was just so epic and amazing.  Rebellion and Musou Hana were pretty good, but if I don’t listen to them enough, I’ll forget them pretty fast.  Solid heart though was good though.  Another awesome track from the group.