Kurayami Monogatari

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Rina Aiuchi – Boom-Boom-Boom June 29, 2009

Filed under: Rina Aiuchi — solarblade @ 2:54 pm
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boomboom

Track Listing

  1. Boom-Boom-Boom
  2. ALRIGHT
  3. ROCK STEADY
  4. Boom-Boom-Boom -instrumental-

1. Boom-Boom-Boom

Ahhhh, I love the startup to Boom-Boom-Boom, sadly I was one of those people who thought it was going to be a pop track, but instead we actually got a ballad this time around, which was a WTF moment for me.  At least that’s what I thought before the chorus hit when it got back into a more rocker side to it.  I don’t know, but the various tempo changes threw me off in the song.  It’s alright, just a bit messy as an A-side.

2. ALRIGHT

ALRIGHT takes the darker route with Rina and wow, I actually kind of like this style from Rina because not only does it sound dark, Rina’s singing and the distant sounding piano just seemed to work this song very well and I love it.  It could be one of her best B-sides she’s ever had…surprising right?

3. ROCK STEADY

Damn, she struck gold on the single with the B-sides.  ROCK STEADY, also in a rock mood definitly gots the freaky stuff going on and with the morphed strings in the BKGD and the fierce guitar riffs, I was surprised at how cool it was.  The chorus does need a little work at not being happy and a lighter mood, but other than that it’s another sweet B-side.

 

 

Rina finishes off the “PLAYGIRL” era with an above average single.  Boom-Boom-Boom to me is actually sounding like filler material against both of the B-sides.  ALRIGHT was dark and cool while ROCK STEADY was pretty cool and maybe summer-like?  I don’t know, but this single has the best B-side so far in her discography.

 

MELL – Kara no Tsubomi June 28, 2009

Filed under: MELL — solarblade @ 12:56 am

karanotsubomi

Track Listing

  1. Kara no Tsubomi
  2. Utsukushiku Ikitai -I’VE in BUDOKAN 2009 Live ver.-
  3. Kara no Tsubomi -instrumental-

1. Kara no Tsubomi

Oh crap….6 minutes long?  I’m surprised by how long the song is, but honestly this song is pretty sweet musically…I wish I could say the same for MELL’s vocals as they begin pretty strange and seiyuuish and stays like that for a most of the song.  At least the chorus fixes it up quite a bit and then I’m falling in love with it again.  It isn’t as mysterious as like “no vain” but the synth+guitar is sweet enough for me.  Could be my favorite between the 3 I’VE artists.

2. Utsukushiku Ikitai -I’VE in BUDOKAN 2009 Live ver.-

Hey, I KNOW THIS SONG XD.  Anyways, I love MELL’s enthusiasm in the song and between the three artists, the audience was so much more alive and with the song which is awesome because this is like MELL’s most well-known and IMO coolest song besides “Red fraction”.  This was better than the rearrangement back on “MELLSCOPE”.  Sweet.  By the way, this is the only song not from “OUT FLOW”, rather it came from an earlier release “regret” which came out in 1999….wow!

 

 

Of the three single: this, “L’Oiseau bleu” and “snIpe”, this was easily the best.  Both tracks were great, Kara no Tsubomi’s slight electro sound mixed with MELL’s vocals always works and the fun-sounding live version worked as well. 

 

KOTOKO – snIpe

Filed under: KOTOKO — solarblade @ 12:44 am
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snipe

Track Listing

  1. snIpe
  2. Close to me… -I’VE in BUDOKAN 2009 Live ver.-
  3. snIpe -instrumental-

1. snIpe

Well, it isn’t surprising that KOTOKO would have a more synthed up track this time around and after hearing “L’Oiseau bleu” and KOTOKO’s other single this week, I was expecting someone getting a very energetic track and snIpe covers that pretty well.  Now KOTOKO doesn’t have the most attractive vocals from I’VE SOUND, but her vocals oddly seem right here.  She actually shouts a bit which works here and there’s one part in the chorus where that yell sound horrid, but the song’s dance style was nice.  I like it.

2. Close to you… -I’VE in BUDOKAN 2009 Live ver.

Just like Mami’s live track, Close to you… is also from the I’VE SOUND compilation “OUT FLOW”.  It’s a bit of a slower pop track this time around and it’s kinda relaxing for a KOTOKO track.  Her vocals here are mostly fine except when she tries to get cute for some of the notes…it’s pretty bad there.  Not a bad live, but Mami’s was better.

 

 

Released on the same day that “ao-iconoclast/PIGEON” was released, snIpe was something else.  Unlike my earlier review of Mami’s single, KOTOKO’s was a bit less liked maybe?  I’m not huge on this live, but the main track was nice and danceable which everyone knows I like.  So it’s in the air lol.

 

Koda Kumi – Kiseki June 27, 2009

Filed under: Koda Kumi — solarblade @ 11:56 pm
Tags: , , ,

kiseki

Track Listing

  1. Kiseki
  2. LOVE HOLIC
  3. life
  4. Kiseki (Instrumental)
  5. LOVE HOLIC (Instrumental)
  6. life (Instrumental)

1. Kiseki

Kuu, oh Kuu….R&B ballads aren’t exactly your thing girl.  It does kind of fall in through her other tracks that are in the same boat.  I’ll say though that her vocals sound really nice here and the music is soothing, but I think that’s about it that’s really good about it.  It’s just a basic R&B ballad nothing more or nothing less really.

2. LOVE HOLIC

Thank god!  LOVE HOLIC is like one of Kuu’s best songs of the era simply because it’s fun, energetic, and just lively.  It’s a little bit of silly and cute rolled in one and I quite enjoyed it since she hasn’t done anything relatively close to it.  I wonder if this was a summer song.  hmmmm, sweet song.

3. life

Another R&B ballad-like track?  Yup, it’s a bit more upbeat though so it’s kind of in the middle between the other two tracks.  Luckily, I like this a lot more than Kiseki, because it keeps my interest and her vocals are a bit more interesting.  I think the bridge was my favorite part, it just seemed to flow right.  Nice pop song, another B-side I enjoyed immensely.

 

 

After the amazing “Chase” and “LOVE & HONEY”…Kiseki would be the meh single clearly just because Kiseki was just another typical Kuu R&B flavored ballad.  Definitely not her forte 4th album into her career.  LOVE HOLIC was Kuu treading on new ground with a summer track and I liked it alot.  life was also good as well, showing off her pop side.  Iono…where this era is gonna end off at lol xD

 

Anna Tsuchiya – Virgin Cat

Filed under: Anna Tsuchiya — solarblade @ 11:28 pm
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CTCR-40279

Track Listing

  1. Virgin Cat
  2. Imitation night
  3. Virgin Cat (LAVA Remix)

1. Virgin Cat

I can only fathom to question why Anna did a single especially since she already has one senseless track, “BUBBLE TRIP”.  Though this song is heavily drenched in pervy thoughts hence the title VIRGIN Cat.  Now the song has a jazzy kind of feel to it which fits how cats are usually portrayed, you know sneaky and such….it’s oddly fitting.  Still the thing that makes me laugh hardcore is both the lyrics ~let’s get the rat~ and the end where she meows….that was a little disturbing.

2. Imitation night

To throw the single off, Imitation night is a very dark rock track even for Anna since it’s all about the heavy guitar riffs and being loud.  She does let up on the bridge which is cool as hell.  I’m not sure if she’s singing in full English, but the song is definitely something else and I love it.

3. Virgin Cat (LAVA Remix)

Yep, there’s a remix of Virgin Cat and somehow manages to take the jazzy side out of it and give it a Caribbean feel which kind of deteriorates the original feel to the song, but it does sound soothing because it’s very laidback and nice.  They even throw in a trumpet solo midway and that was a nice touch.  Pretty good remix, even though it lost the initial feeling.

 

 

So ending off the NUDY SHOW! era, Virgin Cat really did split the fans out as to whether if the song was good or just really really ridiculous.  I’m gonna say that musically it’s something different from Anna, but lyrically it’s naughty and a bit of tease when it comes down to it.  I mean at least the lyrics made sense unlike “BUBBLE TRIP”.  Imitation night….why wasn’t this on the album?  It was so hardcore and well it does kind of reminds me of album track, “BLOOD ON BLOOD”.  Remix was a good treat, doesn’t beat the original though…OK single.

 

Kalafina – storia

Filed under: Kalafina — solarblade @ 6:56 pm
Tags: , , , , , , ,

storia

Track Listing

  1. storia
  2. lirica
  3. storia (instrumental)

1. storia

After that minor setback with “Lacrimosa” they actually tried to do folk again with storia and they finally got it right adding a sense of an epic sound as well.  All three girls do get their fair share of solos which is sweet enough and the songs mystic sound works with their vocals.  Well, maybe not KEIKO’s becuase it’s kind of nasally here, but WAKANA and Hikaru are quite nice.  They definitely still have it.

2. lirica

If you think it couldn’t get any better, it did.  lirica is one mysterious song from the ladies with haunting plucked strings and an undertone of electric guitar to make things sound darker.  Opera vocals and darker songs are always great and Yuki struck gold again with this.  The best part is the middle where they are quiet and gradually build up the suspense in the song.  I have to say, this easily should’ve been an A-side more than “storia”

 

 

Holy shit…Kalafina is definitely not losing any steam.  After “Lacrimosa”, Maya was officially out of the group which left us with a trio of amazing sounding ladies.  I was worried where would they go next, but with this single they are still strong as ever.  storia basically fixed the problems that “Lacrimosa” has and built upon that while lirica was surprisingly bone-chilling and almost as perfect as “sprinter”….*RECOMMENDED*

 

T.M.Revolution – progress

Filed under: T.M.Revolution — solarblade @ 6:38 pm
Tags: , , , , , ,

Progress-1

Track Listing

  1. resurrection I
  2. I.D. ~LOVE ME CRAZY~
  3. LOVE SAVER
  4. BLACK OR WHITE? version 3
  5. last resort
  6. Madan ~Der Freischutz~
  7. VITAL BURNER
  8. Private Storm
  9. fragile
  10. HEAT CAPACITY
  11. Trace Millenium Road
  12. Master Feel Sad
  13. LIGHT MY FIRE
  14. resurrection II

1. resurrection I

Opening up the album is a very synth heavy opening.  I mean it’s not heavy, it’s just that it’s basically the only instrument on this track.  I kind of feel like there’s something mysterious about especially the various DOLBY-like sounds.  Cool opening

2. I.D. ~LOVE ME CRAZY~

We get into the album, and we get the typical T.M.R song, which is a bit of a disappointment because it utilizes the same sounds that Daisuke has been using since their debut which is getting old very fast.  The song’s awesome guitar riff does save the song somewhat, but I can’t help but feel disappointed in this track.

3. LOVE SAVER

Same problem exists in this song, but luckily it’s the synths and tempo of the song that saves it from being mediocre.  You can classify it as almost trance because of how fast it is.  Maybe if they had taken out the guitar, the song would’ve been better IMO.  Luckily it’s the best B-side I’ve heard in the era….though it is the only B-side of the era.

4. BLACK OR WHITE? version 3

The A-side that began the era, BLACK OR WHITE? isn’t that new of a song and if you really wanna be exact the original can be considered their debut….though when it was released it was credited not as T.M.Revolution…weird.  Though, on here it sounds even more disappointing as there’s just not enough to make it stand out and the arrangement is as stale as ever.

5. last resort

See now here’s something that finally sounds relatively different and yet still carries the bland T.M.R sound.  It’s a bit slower than the previous songs, but what got to me was the long length of the song reaching past 6 minutes.  I’m not a big fan of this song just because I feel it drags the entire time…so much for that right?

6. Madan ~Der Freischutz~

Ending off the era, Madan came in and blew my mind.  It’s actually more rock than the synthy stuff, right there, that told me something different was going on here and Takanori with vocals were starting to sound different as well.  Lots more of that awesome vibrato.  One of my favorite PV’s…sweeeet.

7. VITAL BURNER

Damn, VITAL BURNER begins pretty aggresively and it’s led into a track that I could see being in a Sonic game because of it’s high energy and Takanori’s more fiery vocals.  I’ll say, it’s another song that sounds good on a good day.  I think faster songs are his thing actually.  VITAL BURNER is a good track.

8. Private Storm

Oh gawd, I love the opening to Private Storm.  Sadly, it suffers from staleDaisukeitis…Beyond the sweet opening, nothing stands out from here and even Takanori is boring to listen to.  Yeah, let’s just pass this up right now.

9. fragile

Then out of the blue, fragile pops up and blows my mind out of the water.  It’s one of the pre-coordinate songs that I can’t stop listening to because fragile is like amazing.  Covered in synths galore and hard guitar riffs (mostly the synths).  The song makes me feel like I’m in a crystal cave (as odd as it sounds).  It’s also one of the more slower songs, but damn was this refreshing…best song off the album.

10. HEAT CAPACITY

The middle A-side, HEAT CAPACITY after “fragile” was probably the biggest mistake they could’ve done.  Not only is it bland, it just sounds terrible after the last song.  I mean yes, it’s got its positive parts, but other than that it’s terribly bad IMO….verses are the best thing about the song, with that freaky synth beat….but that chorus = fail.

11. Trace Millenium Road

Just like “fragile”, Trace Millenium Road was something new and nice from Daisuke and Takanori.  It starts with a strings line that uses a lot of arpeggios which made me smile.  Then when the bridge pops up things get explosive and it becomes a pretty epic ballad of sorts.  It’s another one of the older tracks that I always have to listen to, it’s pretty sweet.  BTW, I know why they stick three words together for one track on each album cept his debut.  Trace Millenium Road = TMR….hahaha very clever.

12. Master Feel Sad

I really liked the folkish acoustic guitar opening, but things instantly change when the song goes into a hard rock sound which threw me for a loop when I heard this.  This song sounds so much like abingdon boys school track especially with Takanori’s wild singing.  I got say this was something new and I like it alot.  Another standout track, though real short…almost 3 minutes long.

13. LIGHT MY FIRE

No this is not a cover of The Doors well-known track.  So I got to say, it’s another disappointing track as it goes back into the lame Daisuke sound that I’ve been used to.  It’s also just a tad too slow for me and once again drags the song into unbearable levels.  Sorry, but this song is one boring pop track.

14. resurrection II

So the album finishes off basically the same way it started with the same synth melody going on.  There’s a bit more going on here though, with an added synth melody and those DOLBY sounds are descending instead of ascending.  Shows that the album is now over hahahah.

Tracks Recommended

  • fragile
  • Trace Millenium Road
  • Madan ~Der Freischutz~
  • VITAL BURNER

Song of Avoidance

  • last resort

Yeah, finally we’re leaving the pre-GUNDAM era….progress was a little bit of old and a bit of new.  Though I’ve had it with these stale compositions that Daisuke’s been using and downright started to dislike it.  I can see he worked better with some tracks like fragile and Trace Millenium Road because they sounded different enough to make em stand out.  Still, this album was meh to me overall.