Kurayami Monogatari

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Miliyah Kato – BYE BYE March 24, 2010

Filed under: Miliyah Kato — solarblade @ 11:14 pm

Track Listing

  1. BYE BYE
  2. SENSATION
  3. Koi ga Owaru Sono Toki ni
  4. SENSATION -DANCE EDIT-

1. BYE BYE

BYE BYE is definitely something different than what we’ve been getting especially since her last few singles were mostly R&B.  BYE BYE is still R&B in a way, but it’s like a dance track as well since there’s a good steady beat and a lot of synths much to my surprise.  Her voice is pretty smooth for the style and it worked for me.  Miliyah should do more dance music IMO.

2. SENSATION

I’m actually even more surprised the first B-side actually kept up with this dance style.  I like the little guitar touchups and I heard a guy’s voice in the beginning saying something…I just don’t know what that was.  It’s a bit lighter on the dance beats, but it’s also a bit more complex than “BYE BYE” so that’s a good thing.  Her vocals also continue to sound really good and she gets some deeper notes here, OK, so it’s a pretty good B-side.

3. Koi ga Owaru Sono Toki ni

As the strange song of the single, Koi ga Owaru Sono Toki ni is actually an R&B ballad and we all know how much I just loathe these types of songs sometimes because of how they just purely bore me.  This song initially did just that, but I thought the chorus fixed things up and added some interesting guitar and synths parts, but otherwise the verses were a bit plain and dry for me. 

4. SENSATION -DANCE EDIT-

20 extra seconds added to SENSATION?  I’m not sure exactly sure what the point was adding this to the single because it really is the same exact song.  To be exact the biggest difference in between the two was the ending where the original ended right after Miliyah’s ad-libbing while this version ended after the 20 seconds of music.  Not that big of a difference to me.

 

 

After her experiment with “WHY” and her collaboration with Shota, she finally comes and brings it with BYE BYE.  I was surprised that I ended up liking the single as much as I did.  Both BYE BYE and SENSATION were pretty awesome dance tracks and shows off a better sounding Miliyah.  Koi ga Owaru Sono Toki ni was well typical Miliyah R&B, but it was nice either way.  The edit though was a bit unnecessary, just adding 20 seconds…still a pretty great single.

 

Nana Tanimura – FAR AWAY/Believe you

Filed under: Nana Tanimura — solarblade @ 6:12 pm

Track Listing

  1. FAR AWAY
  2. Believe you
  3. Make It Numb
  4. FAR AWAY (Instrumental)
  5. Believe you (Instrumental)
  6. Make It Numb (Instrumental)

1. FAR AWAY

First song of the single, FAR AWAY is surprisingly dark for a Nana song to be honest.  I like the gothic-ness of the song mixed with the edgy arrangement.  While Nana’s vocals aren’t the greatest ever heard, she actually did a fine job with this track in particular and I loved her energy and the chorus was pretty sweet.  I really liked that hook of ~Take me away, take me far away~.  Pretty awesome A-side.

2. Believe you

The other A-side is a gothic ballad and while the thing that bothered me at first in the song was the bad Engrish I heard. she fixed it up pretty nicely for the rest and once the chorus comes in the guitar and piano become more apparant and it seems like a more toned down version of “FAR AWAY”.  It’s not too bad, but I think the other A-side is far superior.

3. Make It Numb

Compared to the other two songs, Make It Numb is just straight up rock and not full of the dramatics of the other two.  However, it comes at a price since it’s under three minutes and that’s a little bit meh.  I do like how Nana is trying to be sexy here and some of it comes off right, but some of it sounds like she’s aimlessly singing the song…I do love her ~yeahs~ and her ~make no~ and she even says ~bitch~ in the after chorus.  It’s a very dirty song, but pretty awesome.

 

 

I’m starting to wonder if we’ll ever get an album from Tanimura to be honest.  This new side to her is pretty damn exciting and I don’t mind if she becomes a rocker chick after this because this single might be her best one yet.  While Believe you was a little boring, FAR AWAY and Make It Numb were just surprisingly good and catchy as well, let’s see what direction she’ll take next.

 

Tohoshinki – Toki wo Tomete

Filed under: Tohoshinki — solarblade @ 10:11 am

Track Listing

  1. Toki wo Tomete
  2. CHECKMATE (YUNHO from Tohoshinki)
  3. Toki wo Tomete -never end remix-
  4. Toki wo Tomete (Less Vocal)
  5. CHECKMATE (Less Vocal)

1. Toki wo Tomete

Toki wo Tomete is not exactly a new track since it was just on their best-of album “BEST SELECTION 2010”.  To be honest, I didn’t really want to see this song being recutted since I wasn’t a big fan when it first released earlier this year.  Being a ballad, I thought it was going to be a stronger from the boys, but unfortunately is isn’t as great as I thought it’d be.  It shows a bit of a weaker performance and vocally not special as some of their older songs.

2. CHECKMATE (YUNHO from Tohoshinki)

I guess after hearing such a weak song, I was surprised that I ended up liking YUNHO’s solo track which sounds a whole lot more interesting and energetic.  YUNHO’s vocals are nice and kind of relaxing given the song’s electro arrangement.  It kind of reminds me of “BREAK OUT!” but this one is a little more clearer and with four less boys.  I think it’s catchy and gave YUNHO more color.  The interlude in the song though was pretty neat to be honest!

3. Toki wo Tomete -never end remix-

As always, we get a remix of the A-side and it begins quite ominously with low bass and synths while keeping the song rather true to its roots as a ballad.  I find the new arrangement a little bit strange given the way it was given to the song.  It feels like an uncomfortable remix that really didn’t go anywhere and just had this underlying strange feel…Iono, just an odd remix for a ballad.

 

 

While the deal with the group is still in the air and JUNSU going solo.  This single couldn’t have come at a worst time, especially since it’s a recut single.  Toki wo Tomete might’ve been a poor choice to have been recut, but CHECKMATE kind of made it somewhat good.  Then the weird remix popped up and brought it down again.  Weak single as recent TBH

 

T.M.Revolution – X42S-REVOLUTION

Filed under: T.M.Revolution — solarblade @ 8:49 am

Track Listing

  1. INVOKE
  2. Meteor
  3. Zips
  4. ignited
  5. vestige
  6. Imaginary Ark

1. INVOKE

3rd time reviewed, INVOKE will always be the song I always think of when people talk about T.M.R.  Now INVOKE definitely was a change to his/their music.  I really loved the energy that was strung in the song and the energetic performance from Takanori always manages to surprise me.  That being said, it’s the penultimate song.

2. Meteor

Then again, Meteor also has the same epic factor, even though it’s a ballad…well I guess that’s what it’s classified as.  I don’t know why, but Takanori just pulls off these ballad off quite well like “THUNDERBIRD” did.  Takanori’s expressive vocals just won me over so quickly and for an insert song, Meteor was one hell of a good ballad.

3. Zips

As I’ve reviewed the last two songs before, we finally get into some new songs for me to review.  Zips, the only GUNDAM song from the “Seventh Heaven” era was back to the exciting and kickass arrangement that made “INVOKE” so damn amazing.  Sometimes, Zips is actually better than Takanori’s first delve into GUNDAM.  I think what gave Zips that edge was how dark it was compared.  You’ll find that same energetic and explosive vocal work from Takanori and c’mon it’s that good.  It does run in my mind that it reminds me of “Out Of Orbit ~Triple ZERO~” though.  Still kickass for me!

4. ignited

Then we get into the lone GUNDAM song from the “vertical infinity” era and just like “INVOKE”, and “Zips” we get another synth-happy track, which is always a good thing, but to be honest, ignited has always been a song that rarely pops up in my favorites though I’ll admit that it is good.  Like the other GUNDAM tracks, his energy is top-notch and his expressiveness is always great to see.  Might not be as epic as the previous three songs, but still a good song on it’s own.

5. vestige

Era-less and all that, vestige is actually another ballad here, but unfortunately it’s one of the few GUNDAM songs that I kind of dislike.  The opening to vestige is epic, and I thought it was going to continue to be that amazing, but the rest of the song just falls flat for me.  I don’t know why, but his vocals were just overboard for me and just made me cry a little bit.  Sorry, this song is prolly the worst A-side since well…his pre-GUNDAM days.

6. Imaginary Ark

Ending this mini-album off is a brand new track, Imaginary Ark.  I was actually getting a little bit of nostalgia with this song, but not in the way that made me go like, this song is so much like “INVOKE”.  It’s the only mid-tempo song found on here, but that’s probably one of the reasons I don’t think it’s that good here.  Sorry, so much for high hope right? 

 

 

T.M.Revolution’s special concept mini-album showcases all the great songs that’s he’s released before going onto his break and getting into abingdon boys school and all that.  While the last two tracks aren’t that great to begin with, I think it’s a solid collection of his most memorable tracks.

 

Porno Graffitti – ∠TRIGGER

Filed under: Porno Graffitti — solarblade @ 5:21 am

Track Listing

  1. ∠RECEIVER
  2. Anima Rossa
  3. Hitomi no Oku wo Nozokasete
  4. Negaposi
  5. Cliche
  6. IN THE DARK
  7. Introduction ~Seirikuru MONSTER~
  8. MONSTER
  9. Kono Mune wo, Ai wo Sasu yo
  10. Aimai na Hitotachi
  11. Hikari no Ya
  12. Koyoi, Tsuki ga Miezu Tomo
  13. Lost

1. ∠RECEIVER

Ahhh, It’s cool that Porno Graffitti is opening up the album quite cool with RECEIVER.  I did find that harmonica a tab bit out of place, but still cool.  Akihito’s basically wild in his vocals and some of it comes out like he’s rather howling the lyrics, but the rest of the song is actually interesting.  It’s a song that would sound good live more than it would on the album.

2. Anima Rossa

As the 3rd single of the era, Anima Rossa was definitely a good surprise after the previous two released in the era.  I really liked how fast Akihito was singing the song and the arrangement was exciting enough to stand out on its own as well.  While I did bag the song since Akihito pulls off some nasally notes, but it’s all right now.

3. Hitomi no Oku wo Nozokasete

Fitting to put the final single of the era after “Anima Rossa” ain’t it?  I found this tune to be a little strange when it first came out because of the folkish arrangement coming from the group.  While I do get annoyed with the chorus after a while, the various violin solos and mood of the song made the blow a little easier for me.  So maybe it might not be as memorable on the album itself, but single-wise it was alright.

4. Negapoji

I don’t know why, but I do enjoy the band’s more experimental songs moreso than their just normal rock stuff and with Negapoji, we kind of got that.  I like the slight rock arrangement mixed with beats and some synths here and there.  Helps that it’s pretty upbeat and Akihito’s vocals are more alive as well.  Second voice has some vocodered voice, but I’m not sure if that was Akihito or possibly Haruichi providing this time.  Still, good song for sure.

5. Cliche

I was wondering when we’d actually get an acoustic track and with Cliche that came true.  However, it turns out these kind of songs are pretty weak for Akihito since his one of a kind of vocals are a little out of place for this kind of setting.  At least after a while more sounds enter in and kind of helps out Akihito’s awkwardness in the song.  It reminds me of a Beatles song, but w/e XD.

6. IN THE DARK

Another song that sounds like it’d be better heard life, IN THE DARK is a strange song for me because of the rather disco feel to it.  I mean yes, it’s Porno Graffitti we’re talking about, but I just get that feeling from this tune.  I like the simpleness they took for the song and didn’t really go outta the way to stand out and I like that bout this song in particular.

7. Introduction ~Seirikuru MONSTER~ 

Since it is the only interlude off the album, this song does introduce the next tune, but was it really necessary?  Just some gal talking and I have no idea what she’s talking about XD.  They could’ve left this off and I would’ve been alright.

8. MONSTER

Anyway, onto the main track, MONSTER kind of has this feel that made songs like “Koyoi, Tsuki ga Miezu Tomo” sounds so good and even though the arrangement isn’t synthy, MONSTER is actually pretty good.  I love when Akihiro’s like ~MONSTAAAR!~.  Haruichi’s guitarwork also worked well here as well giving this darker sound and works in contrast with the slight jazzy sound as well. 

9. Kono Mune wo, Ai wo Sasu yo

2nd single of the era, Kono Mune wo, Ai wo Sasu yo keeps teetering on if I actually like the ballad or not.  In some cases, I do like the fact that it is a ballad, but at the same time it didn’t stand out enough from the other released singles.  At least on the album is does since it’s great to hear Akihito singing better than he has for most of the album so far and the orchestra was a nice twist here as well.

10. Aimai na Hitotachi

Another one of those songs that’ll make ya do a double take, Aimai na Hitotachi definitely sounds like Country music and that for me was a bad sign for me.  As Western as it sounds it doesn’t feel rather caked on like when other artists try to pull it off.  I kind of enjoyed this a lot more than I would’ve expected to, good job here.

11. Hikari no Ya

Probably their darkest and hardest hitting song off the album, Hikari no Ya surprised me with the aggressive arrangement mixed with the howling vocals from Akihito (minus the verses where he’s more mysterious) was a grand idea and while the chorus was a little weak in how it was taken and those and the callback was oddly uber weak for me.  Not bad of a song and I liked they kicked it up a notch.

12. Koyoi, Tsuki ga Miezu Tomo

Their first single of the era and released in 2008, Koyoi, Tsuki ga Miezu Tomo to me is their best song of the era.  Besides the obvious nature of the song’s tie-in, I really liked how this was more focused on both the synths and Haruichi’s playing.  I also loved Akihito’s vocals in this song as they were loud and expressive.  It’s a bit borderline dance, but y’know it’s still pretty awesome.

13. Lost

Ending the album, Lost is actually the longest song as well being at 6 and a half minutes long.  I’m not sure where it fits if it’s a ballad or just a mid-tempo song, but the mood of the song is like “Aimai no Hitotachi”, but without the Country-ness about it.  Maybe mix in th strings from “Kono Mune wo, Ai wo Sasu yo” and we have this song.  The way it ended though was kind of random hahaha.  Like the studio chopped the music and let Haruichi’s acoustics and Akihito ad-libbing fade the song out.

Tracks Recommended

  • Koyoi, Tsuki ga Miezu Tomo
  • Hikari no Ya
  • Negapoji
  • Kono Mune wo, Ai wo Sasu yo
  • MONSTER

Song of Avoidance

  • Cliche

For a band that’s been together 1999, Porno Graffitti definitely aren’t running out of good songs, now since this is the only era I’ve heard from them, I’m sure people that have been fans for a while will bag this album since there’s not that many memorable songs on the album.  Akihito’s vocals are another reason that some of the songs are a bit too much for me, but maybe if they do songs with some more synths, maybe it’ll get better.  I mean c’mon Koyoi, Tsuki ga Miezu Tomo was amazing ^_^