Kurayami Monogatari

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Sayuri Sugawara – “Suki” to Iu Kotoba August 31, 2010

Filed under: Sayuri Sugawara — solarblade @ 6:35 pm

Track Listing

  1. “Suki” to Iu Kotoba
  2. I Wanna Cry…
  3. “Suki” to Iu Kotoba (Instrumental)
  4. I Wanna Cry… (Instrumental)

1. “Suki” to Iu Kotoba

It seems that Sayuri wanted to go back to what she did pre-“Kimi ga Iru Kara” with the whole light R&B style.  I mean it’s not Kana Nishino, but it’s actually relaxing to listen to and Sayuri’s vocals are getting better to listen to as well which is great.  I thought the background vocals were an odd but nice touch.  It’s definitely a ballad I could keep listening to for a long time and that’s good.

2. I Wanna Cry…

For a song that should come off as a ballad, I was surprised it was an upbeat tune here.  I like her voice still since she has the right emotion going on for it and a lot of English as well.  I really do enjoy the pop/rock style going on and it makes a worthy B-side for this single!

 

 

I was impressed a lot by Sayuri for her second single of the era.  There is just something that clicked that didn’t happen with “Sunao ni Narenakute”.  This single was what I needed to like her again and it worked.  I like how sweet that A-side.  Even beter was how nice the B-side came off.  One of the better singles this year!

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miwa – chAngE

Filed under: miwa — solarblade @ 6:10 pm

Track Listing

  1. chAngE
  2. you can do it!
  3. Amayadori
  4. chAngE ~instrumental~

1. chAngE

I was worried that chAngE wasn’t going to be released because this song was well-known before the release of “Little Girl”.  Also the reason for the caps on the A&E is because it’s a change from an acoustic A-side to an electric guitar based song.  Also funny is that the song is used in BLEACH and I was like I’m not surprised that I got YUI vibes from this.  However, it’s one of my favorite BLEACH songs since miwa sounds great singing this and with the newly acquired electric guitar arrangement fits nicely with her.  It’s energetic, fun and fits with the series like most of the others have quite snuggly.

2. you can do it!

The other songs on the single though are of course her lighter songs.  you can do it! is unmistakenly Western sounding like she was traveling on a road or something.  It’s different and once again screams vibes from Shion Tsuji but I don’t mind it really.  It’s still a pretty good song for those who need some positive reinforcements.

3. Amayadori

The last song on the single tones things down quite sharply since it’s mostly an acoustic ballad.  Light percussion and piano are also present and with miwa’s vocals it’s quite relaxing to listen to.  Add some strings in places here and there and it comes off as sweetly nice.  Not sure if it’s amazing yet, but it’s good to see her tackle another slow song.

 

 

Yes, I may be biased to say that chAngE is miwa’s best single yet, but it’s mostly based on the title track just being that good.  The B-sides are a little of what we already have heard from her, but she’s slowly standing out amongst the crowd…but it’s so hard when your vocals sound exactly like YUI & Shion…

 

Watarirouka Hashiritai – Gyu

Filed under: Watarirouka Hashiritai 7 — solarblade @ 5:54 pm

Track Listing

  1. Gyu
  2. Tenohira
  3. Gomennasai
  4. Gyu (Instrumental)
  5. Tenohira (Instrumental)
  6. Gomennasai (Instrumental)

1. Gyu

This whole era with Hashiritai has been one wacky era for sure.  Gyu is by far their song with the most amount of genki found throughout.  Is it bad that I think the singing in this tune is kind of headache-inducing?  It’s like all of the gals are trying to be uber cute and it just comes off as amazingly nasally than normal.  It still is better than “AkKanbe Bashi” for sure, but only slightly because some of the lyrics are catchy to listen to, but it’s still bad on a vocal standby.

2. Tenohira

I guess it was fitting that Tenohira was to tone things down after “Gyu” and it’s definitely a whole lot better in the vocal department because the better sounding girls show off more.  I still think Ayaka and Mayu are the weakest of the singers and unfortunately they get important lines as well.  Even so, the slower tempo and smoother vocals made this a better listen overall.

3. Gomennasai

I guess landing in between the two songs is Gomennasai which is good because it does go back to their first single when their songs sound like they’d be good anime tie-ins.  It’s still high on the genki levels, but it’s not sick like “Gyu” was.  It also has a good live feel that would make the crowd sing along.  It’s a good tune.

 

 

Wow, they got to their 6th single!  Ok, I’ll be honest, while it’s the last of the era, Gyu kind of frustrated me with the lead track because it’s just too much sugar like “AkKanbe Bashi” was if not moreso.  The B-sides however were great and we yet we don’t see a Mayu solo this time around as well!  It’s not my favorite of the era, but at least they’re still going strong.

 

So…Gravity Desolation is about a year old (and i’m reviving the hell outta it) August 30, 2010

Filed under: ~Announcements~ — solarblade @ 7:53 am

http://gravityd.wordpress.com/

So yes, if you guys remember a year ago, I began an English endeavor to review music, but it quickly died off because I was focused on other things and KM, but now I’m ready to try this again and I moved the Kylie Minogue reviews over here now.  I’ll be reviewing albums I physically own (minus the JPN stuff since that belongs here) and I think I’ll re-review Utada’s albums as well so watch for those eventually.  Still put this on ur blogrolls people!!!

 

Pokémon 2.B.A. Master

Filed under: Other V.G Soundtracks — solarblade @ 7:06 am

Track Listing

  1. Pokémon Theme
  2. 2.B.A. Master
  3. Viridian City
  4. What Kind of Pokémon Are You?
  5. My Best Friends
  6. Everything Changes
  7. The Time Has Come (Pikachu’s Goodbye)
  8. Pokémon (Dance Mix)
  9. Double Trouble (Team Rocket)
  10. Together Forever
  11. Misty’s Song
  12. PokéRAP
  13. You Can Do It (If You Really Try)

1. Pokémon Theme

If you don’t remember this theme song that damn you lived a very sheltered life away from TV.  Everyone should know the theme song to the first season of the anime.  The fact that there’s a second verse/chorus, guitar solo, and even a final chorus blew my mind when I bought this so long ago.  I used to know every single line of this song (and sadly still do), but it’s just a song that is so hard not to remember since it made the show what it was especially being the show’s opening theme and such.  One of the easiest songs to point out.

2. 2.B.A. Master

I mean yes, this album’s lyrics is cheesy and all about Pokémon so there shouldn’t be a surprise when the title song is basically about what the whole series is about roughly.  Now, I beef this song so much because I learned that ~Flame~ was a type…I’m guessing they also wanted to say Bird for more lulz?  It’s an edgy kiddie song, but did they really need to add the kids and the little conversation in the middle of the song…who the hell was that…Giovanni?  Iono, it’s just so out of left field for me…just iono…

3. Viridian City

Let’s be honest, Viridian City wasn’t what I was expecting from an album like this.  I like the almost airy pop sound it has and I love the lyrics for it since it does follow the game in a rather pseudo way.  Though hahah Viridian City isn’t important until the later half of the game which is funny.  Now I liked the vocalist for this song a lot more than the one in “2.B.A. Master” and the MC wasn’t annoying either.  Nothing like yelling ~we’re on the road to Viridian City!~ 

4. What Kind of Pokémon Are You?

Because we need a song that makes a Pokédex seem rather obsolete for a song, WKoPAY is probably one of the cheesiest songs the album has to offer so it helps that it came pretty early.  I mean it’s rapping about types and a Pokémon that fits the typing.  Even though ~kick your grass~ does not hide the fact this song wasn’t truly made for kids in mind at first.  I really thought the rapping was uber-cheese, but the actual singing isn’t that bad, but it definitely could use some work.  Don’t forget this was released in the primary generation and so you won’t hear stuff about Dark and Steel types since they didn’t exist.  Not bad and the chillish arrangement is cool, but those parts are filled with the bad rapping.  ~Watch out for Mewtwo!~

5. My Best Friends

Ok, we aren’t out of the dangerous section of the album just quite yet.  My Best Friends sounds like it could’ve been cool (especially with the guitar riff at the beginning, but that chorus is so bad in lyrical form, since it’s that sentimental and just omg icky to listen to.  The tropical verses are nice, but the chorus just ruins everything.  Sorry, but it’s my least favorite song on the album.

6. Everything Changes

Today when I listen to the album, I only pass up a few songs on the album.  Everything Changes might be my only regret for not paying attention more since it’s different from the songs before since it’s got some synths going on and has a certain mystery to it.  Whoever is singing it sounds nice.  I like the lyrics since they aren’t so overbearing and make small allusions to the general reasoning of Pokémon, but it’s slight and not thrown at ur face.  Though did they had to insert the Metapod < Butterfree evolution scene?  They do this a bit in this album so prepare for random scenes in the songs.  It’s a good track though.

7. The Time Has Come (Pikachu’s Goodbye)

Oh man, this song can be a tearjerker when you are in the worst of moods.  Trust me, it caught me off guard at least once.  I oddly remembered that a guy sang this on the show, but the album makes it that a female sung it instead.  It’s sappy, a little cheesy, and the music is kind of dated somewhat, but the gal singing sounds really pretty here.  Like it makes you surprised that it’s so sad in both context and emotionally…it’s so weird but so good and I like when a ballad is able to pull that off.

8. Pokémon (Dance Mix)

Wait!  we go from a heartwrenching ballad to a dance mix?  Well, I guess flow can be thrown out the window.  The biggest thing I remember is the vocalist was HUGE in the disco era and of course hearing this song having that slight sound is great and let’s be honest she sounds amazing even when ad-libbing.  Then hearing this song being used in the CM’s for the first movie made it awesome.  It stands out so hardcore from the album since it’s the only song besides “Viridian City” that makes you get up and dance.

9. Double Trouble (Team Rocket)

Wait, Team Rocket gets their own song?  Well, I can’t blame them because this song just oozes sinister and slyness that I loved with the early TR.  Even better is that they got the voice actors from the show to sing in the song and I was like oh this must be pretty epic.  I mean Meowth doing a lil singin is funny to picture.  It’s trying to say that TR is badass and we all know how much BS is that XD.

10. Together Forever

I’ll be honest, I’m biased more for this song.  It’s basically “My Best Friends” pt. 2, but I love the vocals a whole lot more than in that song.  It’s still about friendship and all that sugary stuff and includes another snippet from the show (well, actually it might be original spoken lines).  It’s still however might not be everyone’s cup of tea, but I think it sounds a whole lot more easier on the ears and not as cheesetastic.

11. Misty’s Song

I like that for our next song that they used the voice actors for some new material here.  Though did they had to pull one of the cruelist jokes on the fans by making this a song about Misty wanting to make out with Ash?  Yeah, I partially blame this song for starting up the whole AshxMisty ordeal and making it last so long with no official answer as to what might’ve happened since they alluded towards it many-a-times during the seasons before she left.  Now I don’t know if the gal singing is the official VA for Misty, but she sounds nasally as all hell and add the uber cheese lovey-dovey lines about one-sided love it’s just so wrong xD.  Thx….this is going to bother people to no end!

12.  PokéRAP

Wow, really you’re gonna stick the whole damn Pokémon list on here…all 150 (remember Mew really didn’t exist to us at the time).  Now I have to give props because naming off all 150 of these blasted things takes a lot of dedication and rather a lot of patience since he’s doing this all out of random and not by the national dex and all that.  He does them through I think 19-20 maybe at a time and there’s a little interlude in between each to make it not boring?  Iono, but hearing this really brings a lot of nostalgia to us older guys since it played at the end of each episode in the Kanto episodes.  Just as memorable if not more than the opening theme.

13. You Can Do It (If You Really Try)

I’m surprised the album didn’t just finish off with that last song.  However, You Can Do It is an acoustic song, but it sounds like a rather rejected Christian song because of the whole positive attitude of the song and minor nods towards it.  It doesn’t even sound like it’s Pokémon related and I’ve never even heard it on the Anime at all, so this stands out on the album.  I just can’t get the fact it sounds so…religious almost.

Tracks Recommended

  • Pokémon (Dance Mix)
  • Together Forever
  • Viridian City
  • The Time Has Come (Pikachu’s Goodbye)
  • Pokémon Theme/PokéRAP

Song of Avoidance

  • My Best Friends

Yes, this album is a big drop of nostalgia for me because of my knowledge of them from so long ago (was one of my first 5 albums to be exact).  This has some of the shows bigger songs and that’s great, but listening to it today has changed my outlook.  Most of the album’s faults comes in the cheesy lyrics found in most if not all the songs, I mean yes, this is geared towards kids so I won’t fault that.  However some were just bad even at my age then, I knew these were ugh lyrics in some of them.  It’s a novelty album for sure and I mean it’s really the only place to hear some of these better songs that were shown off in clips (they replaced the PokéRAP during the near end of the Indigo League era).

 

So, a new generation of reviewers…anyone wanna join the MSN group?

Filed under: ~Announcements~ — solarblade @ 2:02 am

Basically all that’s in the title.  Some of us are getting a little tired and want some fresh blood in the chats!

If you review as well (mostly if your blog is on my blogroll) but not limited to that, please leave a comment or your MSN and we’ll add ya.  There’s a bit of us in there

  • Efanz from Radiant Dawn (leader)
  • Lex from Beyond the Sea
  • Meg and Tsuki from Lost Wing
  • Jin from Sora to Kujira
  • Buce from Buce’s Reviews

Oh yeah MAC users aren’t allowed…no it’s not a rule but MSN doesn’t like MAC users in groups so that’s something to think about too!

There’s of course a few others but they died off…xD, so we’re looking for exciting people to talk to and get to know of course…I mean we reviewers of the J-pop world are a slice of the pizza and it’s great to get new pizzas!

 

Mai Kuraki – SUMMER TIME GONE August 29, 2010

Filed under: Mai Kuraki — solarblade @ 4:55 pm

Track Listing

  1. SUMMER TIME GONE
  2. anywhere
  3. SUMMER TIME GONE -Instrumental-

1. SUMMER TIME GONE

I think SUMMER TIME GONE is rather surprising for Mai-K to release as an A-side.  There’s something kind of catchy about the song for some reason and it might be that good chorus or possibly the even better produced verses with the bleeps, synths and slyness coming from Mai.  I did notice a bit of auto-tune being used here but it’s so light that you would have to pay attention to that sort of thing.  I definitely enjoyed this much more than “Eien Yori Nagaku”.

2. anywhere

As for the B-side, it’s just as summery as the A-side if not more.  If it was my thoughts, I’d say she was trying to make “Ichibyou Goto ni Love for you” even better and at some points she does, but that filtering that made her sound underwater is kind of meh.  I think this was a great B-side otherwise with the good amount of actual instruments. 

 

 

Since we left the oddity that was “Eien Yori Nagaku/Drive me crazy”, SUMMER TIME GONE is kind of different.  I mean it does go back to what we’ve known to like from her, but there’s something different (besides the odd release date and how she thinks her single = the end of summer).  It’s still a good single and I hope anywhere is on the album!