Kurayami Monogatari

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Kana Nishino – Kimitte October 31, 2010

Filed under: Kana Nishino — solarblade @ 11:40 pm

Track Listing

  1. Kimitte
  2. Christmas Love
  3. GIRLS GIRLS

1. Kimitte

You know, I wish Kana would actually change up her A-sides just a little bit.  I mean ever since she started doing the R&B ballads it has been rather getting harder and harder to enjoy her since they all sound rather similar.  I mean Kana sounds pretty of course (when is she not), but the music is just so one-dimensional now that anything else would be better than this nowadays. 

2. Christmas Love

That’s why her B-sides of recent have mostly been better than the A-sides as of recent.  While it’s still somewhat early for Christmas songs, Kana’s winter tune is pretty simple and still carries the light R&B sound that I have problems with.  At least it’s upbeat and carries the holiday sound tightly.  It’s still a bit simple and kind of plain, but I’ll make an exception here.

3. GIRLS GIRLS

Of course since it seems to be the repeating factor to Kana’s singles, GIRLS GIRLS represents the harder or edgy song Kana has.  It doesn’t have as much punch like her previous songs like others, but I liked the fact there was electric guitars and a mix of fluttering strings.  The thing here though is that Kana isn’t totally singing like the other two tracks and just like pseudo-raps in the song. 

While she might have made me a fan during the “to LOVE” era, this one is like repeating the same thing and I’m already kind of getting tired of songs like Kimitte.  I wish there was something that’d make it pop out at me but there isn’t really.  Christmas Love is near it as well, but it’s a Christmas tune so there’s not much you could do…(I mean a sex romp Xmas tune is a bit pushing isn’t it?).  Of course GIRLS GIRLS is definitely experimental stuff and while her not singing is pretty unorthodox, I can get used to it quickly.

 

4minute – FIRST/DREAMS COME TRUE October 30, 2010

Filed under: 4minute — solarblade @ 10:31 pm

Track Listing

  1. FIRST
  2. DREAMS COME TRUE (Japanese Version)
  3. HIGHLIGHT
  4. FIRST (Instrumental)
  5. DREAMS COME TRUE (Instrumental)

1. FIRST

Even though technically this isn’t their first original JPN song, FIRST is their first original song that’s an A-side.  While it’s not as hardcore as their previous two singles, FIRST still carries the energetic punch that has been making me pay attention to their music and once again I found myself loving this song entirely.  The solos between the girls are still spread out evenly and their Japanese is more or less the same as it was in “I My Me Mine”.  Either way, good start to the single and the PV is cute for sure.

2. DREAMS COME TRUE (Japanese Version)

The other A-side on this single is of course their Japanese take of DREAMS COME TRUE which was used in an OST.  It means it wasn’t released in 4minutes official list of releases, but w/e we get a new version.  Now I haven’t listened to their music across the seas, but DREAMS COME TRUE is totally a 180 from all their previous efforts.  For one thing, the song sounds rockin’ and almost like a fun rock tune.  It kind of sounds a little idol-like in places and with the loud speakers of the group, it would’ve easily fell into that.  Very weird song for them, but whatever.

3. HIGHLIGHT

Once again like their previous singles, we get an already released Korean song.  Likewise, HIGHLIGHT comes from their 2nd mini-album, “Hit Your Heart”.  I found it pretty cool that we’re back into the synthy dance stuff because this is what the girls excel at and HIGHLIGHT shows it well.  Not sure what’s harder between this and “FIRST”, but it’s good and makes me want to listen to their Korean songs.

FIRST/DREAMS COME TRUE might be the era’s last single, but it shows that 4minute is pretty consistent with their releases so far and with an album announced in December, I can only wonder what’ll be on it besides the A-sides.  Anyways, FIRST is pretty good, as good as “I My Me Mine”, very heavy and beat-driven…SWEET!  DREAMS COME TRUE is just a little too strange being all pop/rock and all that weirdness.  Of course HIGHLIGHT was good too, since it is the original version XD

 

faylan – Last vision for last October 29, 2010

Filed under: faylan — solarblade @ 8:32 pm

Track Listing

  1. Last vision for last
  2. Shizuka na Mitsu Yori Akai Mitsu
  3. Last vision for last (off vocal)
  4. Shizuka na Mitsu Yori Akai Mitsu (off vocal)

1. Last vision for last

If i had knew Last vision for last was going to be this disappointing, I would’ve just skipped it.  Unlike her last A-side which was epic, Last vision for last seems more synth/anime based than her rock-sided songs and such and for the most part it didn’t do anything for me.  I mean faylan’s guitar style is present, but it’s covered by the various synths and thrown off by changes that didn’t make sense like the piano-only part during the choruses.  It’s just kind of a messy song for me.

2. Shizuka na Mitsu Yori Akai Mitsu

Why couldn’t this have been the A-side really?  In my opinion it’s like a more stable and darker song for faylan and I approve of the use of the synths here moreso than in “Last vision for last” since it isn’t beyond messy and faylan’s vocals are pretty strong.  I find it funny that it’s not trying to be explosive and tries to keep it controlled and such.  Still it’s a kickass song.

Ok, I have to say Last vision for last is my least favorite since she debuted.  I wish the song wasn’t so messy its execution and left Shizuka na Mitsu Yori Akai Mitsu take up the A-side since it was immensely stronger than its A-side.  Since it might be the second of the era “Senjou ni Saita Ichirin no Hana” being the first, this was a downgrade.

 

Muten Musume – Appare Kaitan Zushi! October 28, 2010

Filed under: Morning Musume — solarblade @ 3:51 am

Track Listing

  1. Appare Kaitan Zushi!
  2. Kura Sushi Bikkurapon!
  3. Appare Kaitan Zushi! (Instrumental)
  4. Kura Sushi Bikkurapon! (Instrumental)

1. Appare Kaitan Zushi!

I don’t know what really made Momosu decide to kind of take this song on, but it somehow reminds me of the more sillier songs from Momosu and I missed this since I was getting pretty tired of the emo-ness of recent.  I don’t know why but the ~WOW!~ sounds exactly like the ones from Berryz’ “Otakebi Boy WAO!”.  Either way, this song brought back what Momosu has been missing for quite awhile and I enjoyed it even though it does come off as random and repetitive in the long run.

2. Kura Sushi Bikkurapon!

The B-side is just as quirky and happy as it’s sister A-side, but this definitely fits more as the “Sushi” song since it’s goofy and exciting, but I found myself disappointed there was no solo lines in this song and it kind of is once again repetitive, but being only a little above 2 minutes, it’s alright, but I kind of expected more from Momosu than this.

Yes, I’m calling this a Morning Musume release since all the members are here (despite Eri, Jun, and Lin graduating after the release of their next single).  Appare Kaitan Zushi! might be random of a release, but it does show that Momosu still can have fun and be cute for sushi-ness and all!  Maybe we’ll see Appare on “Fantasy! Juuichi”…

 

Porno Graffitti – Kimi wa 100%

Filed under: Porno Graffitti — solarblade @ 3:13 am

Track Listing

  1. Kimi wa 100%
  2. Kemuri
  3. GET IT ON

1. Kimi wa 100%

I’ve only followed the duo only for one album era, but I haven’t encountered a song this light from PG so for me it’s a bit strange to listen because it’s light and upbeat.  Of course Akihito sounds pretty good in the song and it fits the bright mood.  I kind of like this song even though I’m more interested into the synth-experiments so this is a rare case.

2. Kemuri

This was more of what I wanted to hear from them since it does combine their rock side with some synths to get a song like this.  I do feel weirded out that Akihito’s vocals sound like it’s sung live or something.  Still it’s very cool and reminds me of a more synthy “Rainbow”.  Good tune.

3. GET IT ON

I feel bad that Porno Graffitti had to do a cover track, but here it is.  I didn’t know Akihito was speaking English until the whole ~get it on, bang a gong, get it on~ part which is the chorus BTW.  Either way Akihito sounds bad singing in English and it shows a lot in the song.

Beginning a new era off, Kimi wa 100% is a good way to start things even though it’s not what I expected from the duo.  I liked the upbeat, anime-ish sound of Kimi wa 100% and the heavier Kemuri.  However, the cover song they chose was in bad taste and Akihito can’t really keep his accent out of the song, hence it sounded so weird.  Still good single.

 

LM.C – LET ME’ CRAZY!!

Filed under: LM.C — solarblade @ 1:56 am

Track Listing

  1. LET ME’ CRAZY!!
  2. No Fun, No Future.
  3. YAHSA Hime

1. LET ME’ CRAZY!!

Wow, I didn’t think it’d be different, but LET ME’ CRAZY!! is definitely something I wouldn’t expect LM.C after their last era finished.  I love maya’s vocals in the song since they’re powerful when they want to be, but it also feels like he’s trying to push the song to be more faster since he sings like iono…he’s out of breath or something. Still, the song is fast, energetic and has great parts throughout and the use of synths is a plus.

2. No Fun, No Future.

As the shortest song from the single being about 3 minutes long, No Fun, No Future. is one of those happy songs with a slight positive sound going for it.  I definitely didn’t expect a song like this and I love that they were being more rock happy than in “LET ME’ CRAZY!!”.  It’s just a good sounding rock song that’s simple and to the point.

3. YASHA Hime

For the other B-side, YASHA Hime is a bit like the A-side in which it has both synth stuff and a hard rock riff, but it’s more focused on the experimental side to their music.  I have to say, maya’s softer vocals in the verses and the light chorus is an interesting choice, but I they oddly worked together.  Aiji though should get points for the rockin’ atmosphere though, it was that good!

Wow, I didn’t know what we were gonna get after “WONDERFUL WONDERHOLIC” since that was a pretty good album from them and with LET ME’ CRAZY!!, I think they’re continuing to be more towards their rock side, but they still hold to their experimental side as well and it worked out in the end.  LET ME’ CRAZY!! and YASHA Hime are both awesome tracks from the duo with a mix of both sides to their music while No Fun, No Future. was pure fun rock from them.  Can’t wait for their next single to drop!

 

GRANRODEO – ROSE HIP-BULLET

Filed under: GRANRODEO — solarblade @ 1:24 am

Track Listing

  1. ROSE HIP-BULLET
  2. Chicken Hero
  3. ROSE HIP-BULLET (OFF VOCAL)
  4. Chicken Hero (OFF VOCAL)

1. ROSE HIP-BULLET

I love hard anime rock songs and it seems that ROSE HIP-BULLET has filled up that role quite nicely.  While I found out that KISHOW is a seiyuu himself, male seiyuus don’t really bother me as much as females as much and it’s good.  I love the heavy energy that song has throughout and KISHOW sounds pretty good especially his held out notes.  It’s a strong song and great since it’s the first GRANRODEO tune I’ve heard from them so it’s a winner.

2. Chicken Hero

As for the oddly titled B-side, Chicken Hero doesn’t let up on the energy the A-side started up and I loved this so much more for some reason and IMO I like KISHOW’s slightly higher register than his deeper tones.  It reminds me of the more epic abingdon boys school’s songs so I easily found myself in love with this.

I knew that getting into GRANRODEO would be an experience (since they have no Jpopstop page), but ROSE HIP-BULLET is an interesting experience nonetheless and I love the brash energy and crazy rock going around in this single.  If the previous two singles are like this, the ncount me in as a glorified fan XD

 

chatmonchy – Awa Come

Filed under: chatmonchy — solarblade @ 12:49 am

Track Listing

  1. Koko Dake no Hanashi
  2. Caramel Purin
  3. Seishun no Ichiban Fudashou
  4. Kumo Hashiru
  5. Ai Kawarazu
  6. Second Present
  7. My Sugar View
  8. Mata, Chikai Uchi ni

1. Koko Dake no Hanashi

Uhm, why did chatmonchy had to begin the mini-album with a pretty bleh song?  I thought the flow in the beginning was pretty messy, but when the rest of the band came in, it straightened out pretty quickly.  It’s more or less what I expected from chatmonchy so I guess it’s alright.

2. Caramel Purin

I didn’t think that the song with a yummy title would be actually one of the serious sounding songs from here.  It’s pretty straightforward from them and since I can easily tolerate Eriko’s vocals more here than in any other songs, I ended up liking this quite a bit.

3. Seishun no Ichiban Fudashou

I know that I’ll end up saying this a lot, but I’d expect this song to have been put onto “Kokuhaku” since it has that flow going on and such.  I like the fast pace of the verses and the slow, yet weird flowing chorus of this song.  It’s also the first time I heard the other members sing something and I approve.  It’s still strange with the areas that go on so it might take some time adjusting to, but I could easily enjoy this for what it is, but maybe too sloppy for others.

4. Kumo Hashiru

Being one of the more louder songs, Kumo Hashiru started out fine being so lowkey and quiet, almost rock ballad, but once the chorus jumps in all hell breaks lose and I’m finding myself grossed out by Eriko’s execution of the chorus being vocally mega stressed and hitting bad notes all over.  I mean I can see why she did it since the chorus is so loud and all, but that was just overkill for me and kind of ruined the niceness of the song.

5. Ai Kawarazu

If there was one thing I kind of despise more than Eriko singing over the limit, it’s when she tries to be cute and going over the limit and with Ai Kawarazu, she definitely tried to kill my ears in the verses.  It’s just the way she swoops her notes that bother me the most since the neding note she hits is very offkey and whiny at the same time.  Now I not be a total fan of chatmonchy, but it’s one of the reasons I can’t fully enjoy them musically.

6. Second Present

Second Present at least goes back to the styles I usually like from chatmonchy and Eriko finally isn’t getting off the boat here.  While it’s still under the realm of cute pop/rock music, it’s a bit more stronger and the other two gals come back for the chorus.  It’s funky and has good rhythm as well. 

7. My Sugar View

I’m not exactly sure what’s exactly going on with My Sugar View since it’s got a strange start with little instrumentation and Eriko singing by herself before the group cleans up and gets on with the melody of the tune.  At least Eriko’s guitar playing is nice to listen to for sure.  It might not be the most memorable song from them, but it’s good.

8. Mata, Chikai Uchi ni

Closing the mini-album up, Mata, Chikai Uchi ni is an Eriko solo basically with just her and acoustic guitar, but it’s also quite short being about a minute and a half long and all.  At least it wasn’t slow which is good.  It oddly reminds me of YUI for some reason since Eriko and YUI have similar vocals somewhat and it kind of struck me here as that.

While the rather long resting period was good for me (haha), chatmonchy’s return was alright but nothing I haven’t really heard already from “Kokuhaku”.  Maybe chatmonchy isn’t one of those bands that really wanna change their sound and I can enjoy that but Eriko really needs to get some control on some of the songs that demand her to go over the limit on her vocals, it’s kind annoying me now!

 

MELL – MIRAGE October 27, 2010

Filed under: MELL — solarblade @ 3:53 am

Track Listing

  1. mirage
  2. KILL
  3. Princess bloom
  4. Fascination
  5. FIXER
  6. Sabaku no Yuki
  7. Proof
  8. Teleportation guy
  9. Love illusion
  10. Infection
  11. RIDEBACK
  12. MY PRECIOUS
  13. Red fraction -IO drive mix-

1. mirage

Beginning the album with its title track, mirage kind of mixes the synth style with her rock style that MELL has been getting more used to doing here recently in this era.  While there’s some ties to Mami’s “linkage” somewhere in there, I ended up enjoying this a bit even though I do feel it becomes a little sloppy with the electric guitars.  Still, it’s a little bizarre for an album opener (and title song for that matter) but I guess we had to start somewhere.

2. KILL

Being the first (well argubly) A-side of the era, KILL is definitely what I wanted to hear from MELL after listening to “MELLSCOPE” and the dark vibes this song carries was so awesome to listen to.  While it isn’t as dance-based as “kicks!”, it has the same feel and I enjoyed both so this on the album was great and MELL’s vocals are of course epic to listen to.  FREAKY SONG!

3. Princess bloom

Oh the beginning of Princess bloom sounds like those Icy Caverns from the original Donkey Kong Country, I liked that so much hahah.  There’s just a rather flow-breaking status about it since it broke the rockish flow that “mirage” and “KILL” were going for.  It’s really smooth while keeping the synths going on and letting MELL be as legato as she wants.  I never expected MELL to have a song like this, but it’s different and I might grow to like it.

4. Fascination

Why does the synth at the beginning remind me of something else eh?  Either way, I love when MELL sings under the trance style of I’ve Sound and Fascination definitely fills that gap smoothly.  It’s like “no vain”, but a bit lighter in mood and flow.  So far, MELL has shown her various colors of singing as well, but this is where I like her the most.  So basically, this was a great tune for her!

5. FIXER

I guess we quickly switch back to rockin’ MELL with FIXER and once again found myself liking the edgy side to MELL’s music a bit more.  Once again, I love the fact that she sings really strong and utilizes a lot more vibrato in the chorus.  It might come off as a little blah in the verses, but this is good otherwise.

6. Sabaku no Yuki

Wow, talk about diving into the I’ve Sound encyclopedia to pull this song out.  Already, you can tell MELL sounds rather younger than in the other songs of the album and be as it may, it’s also one of MELL’s old songs like “Utsukushiku Ikitai”.  That being said, it’s different, but it doesn’t feel so out of place as you might think.  It’s pretty synthy, but a great addition, even if it’s ancient stuff.

7. Proof

While “Sabaku no Yuki” still remains the odd song addition to the album, Proof is right up there as well.  I mean for one thing, it was the primary A-side of her second single “Proof/no vain” so it’s inclusion makes a bit more sense since it wasn’t on “MELLSCOPE”, but I still think it has no place on the album. 

8. Teleportation guy

I find it amazing that MELL is embracing her synth side again and once again was surprised this song was as upbeat as it was and yet kept a great trance-ish melody going on (especially the musical interludes of the song).  I do think some of the singing is rather off, but the music is what drew me in moreso and I can’t help but fall in love with it.

9. Love illusion

I’m surprised that the album is actually much trance-ish that I thought it would’ve been and it’s great we have a synth/rock fusion track like Love illusion since it shows how fluid and sweet it could be.  MELL’s vocals aren’t as tightknit as she usually controls it so I liked the lessened control.  Though on this album it kind of parallels Mami Kawada’s “in answer”, but just a tad bit.

10. Infection

One of the new songs that were known prior to the album being announced, Infection was used as an opening to the anime “HIGHSCHOOL OF THE DEAD”.  For being the opening theme, I was surprised this actually turned out worse than I remembered it.  It calls for a chaotic arrangement mixed in with MELL’s uneven vocal style and it might be on purpose to give the song more of a wild sound, but this is like “Virgin’s high!” in the way that it’s sloppy arrangement just is too much for me to listen to.

11. RIDEBACK

Ahhhh, I was so disappointed that they had to include the “English” version of RIDEBACK.  There’s just something about this cut is so sloppily done about this.  I barely understand what she says unlike in “Red fraction” where I could tell most of the time what she says, I much prefer the Japanese version of RIDEBACK off the single more than this.

12. MY PRECIOUS

MY PRECIOUS actually stands out for me on this album since it’s like a ballad, but not really because of the whole cold and weird ideas it got.  I do love that MELL sounds beautiful in the chorus where it opens up and sounds majestic.  It’s something you don’t expect from I’ve, but I approve and I loved it.  The only thing that really bothered me was the near 8 minute length of the song so it basically did drag the song all over…oh well, it’s still a good song.

13. Red fraction -IO drive mix-

Ending the album is of course a remix of MELL’s debut single and oddly enough it was used in the same anime the original was tied-in from.  For me, it’s like why change an already good thing AGAIN!?  This remix sounds like it moved the sound around and fidgeted with the beats to make it seem remix-ish, but it sounds like there wasn’t anything really new given.  The vocals from MELL are a bit clearer though I’ll admit to that.  Different, but passable.

Tracks Recommended

  • Teleportation guy
  • Fascination
  • Sabaku no Yuki
  • KILL
  • MY PRECIOUS

Song of Avoidance

  • Infection

In some ways, MELL’s sophomore effort is towards a direction that the other members (minus Eiko) have seemingly turned into towards a more trance-ish style ala the early I’ve days.  MIRAGE does feel like the other recent albums of the other 2 girls (KOTOKO & Mami Kawada), but MELL has kept her rockish side as well and I feel like this was a good album, but there were some meh stuff and Infection was just yikes on a stick.  I still think “Kara no Tsubomi” would’ve been nice, but w/e

 

Mika Nakashima – STAR

Filed under: Mika Nakashima — solarblade @ 12:47 am

Track Listing

  1. ALWAYS
  2. Ichiban Kirei na Watashi wo
  3. BABY BABY BABY
  4. Over Load
  5. GAME
  6. SMILEY
  7. CANDY GIRL
  8. LONELY STAR
  9. No Answer
  10. SPIRAL
  11. Memory feat. DAISHI DANCE
  12. 16
  13. Nagareboshi
  14. SONG FOR A WISH

1. ALWAYS

You know after an era of tons of ballads, ALWAYS for me is probably not such a good start to the album.  I mean of course we get the smoky vocals from Mika and such, but that’s really it.  I mean the piano/strings combination is kind of bland and especially with “Ichiban Kirei na Watashi wo” and “Nagareboshi” also being A-sides, this seemed poor and forgettable.

2. Ichiban Kirei na Watashi wo

Which is kind of poor placing this song right after “ALWAYS”.  For me, the ballads of the era has been mostly misses for me and this one misses the mark simply because there just wasn’t anything for me to stick to.  I did like that it was a bit more brighter and had more things going on than the last song, but it still is kind of underwhelming.

3. BABY BABY BABY

At least one of the B-sides from “ALWAYS” made a good enough change to the previous two blah ballads by making this a bit jazzy and with some sitar added along as well.  While I couldn’t remember the song since the single review, I’m surprised this song didn’t take over til now and I ended up actually liking the song all over.  It’s one of the best vocally sung tracks off the album TBH.

4. Over Load

After we get out of the ballads, we get into our poppish songs and there’s a bunch of them starting with the A-side that began the era.  Just like “BABY BABY BABY”, I ended up forgetting how the song went in the first place, but I was happy the song brought the tempo up because I was slowly getting bored of the ballads.  I do think it does rather pale to her older poppy songs, but I’m happy she went back to this style since it’s been a while since we’ve gotten a “cute” song from Mika. 

5. GAME

*record scratch*…Wait, what is GAME doing on this album?  If you don’t know, the song was originally the only new track found of the “NO MORE RULES.” compilation album and that was before the release of “Over Load” as well.  Who’s complaining though?  I actually loved the song because it’s so upbeat and funky and just full of spunk and spice that it’s hard not to like it.  Mika’s vocals are very sexy and fit the atmosphere the song gave off.  Loved this!

6. SMILEY

I still can’t get over that laugh at the start since it so rings “Rocking Horse” from here.  Just like “GAME”, SMILEY has a pretty smoky atmosphere that’s filled with brass and funky bass lines.  Her vocals oddly sound more clear than before, but some of the high notes she hit are a bit weird sounding.  I don’t know why I bashed it on the “CANDY GIRL” review..but I think it was because the same instruments were used in both songs x.x

7. CANDY GIRL

Which is unfortunate because CANDY GIRL is right after.  I loved the brass opening for the song, but for me the song sort of failed because, it’s the first time where I think a Mika song is too repetitive and focused more on the backups than Mika herself which is stupid.  I do think it does have a nice groove to it, but I wished Mika had redone it to where she was singing more and less repetition.

8. LONELY STAR

Wow only two brand new songs on the album?  (“SONG FOR A WISH” was a digital release).  LONELY STAR I guess starts up the synth songs up and I was surprised at this one.  I mean I know she’s great under this style like “FOCUS” and DAISHI DANCE version of “SAKURA ~Hanagasumi~”.  The beat though is heavier and definitely set in the dance/pop style and I enjoyed this quite a bit.  Maybe the verses are a bit off since Mika’s vocals are filtered, but this is still a sweet song nonetheless.

9. No Answer

Being the B-side from “Over Load”, No Answer follows “LONELY STAR” quite closely, but this is more lighter and focuses on the strings and piano than the beat that’s going on.  While since the single my enjoyment of the song has lessened a bit, it’s not bad, but it’s just feels rather plain since it’s between two stronger dance tracks.

10. SPIRAL

SPIRAL is definitely the sequel to “FOCUS” there is no doubt about it since both song kind of start up similarly except SPIRAL isn’t fused with jazz to make a good combination.  It has its own style and flow which is great, but this song has gotten on my nerves as of recent.  It’s the whole chorus where she butchers the ~spiral~ by hitting these pitchy high notes that bug me.  If it wasn’t because of that, I’d say it was the best damn song on the album.

11. Memory feat. DAISHI DANCE

Wow, they actually decided to include Memory to the album (if you don’t know this song was on “Nagareboshi” and was on DAISHI DANCE’s album “spectacle.”.  For me the inclusion is both good which meant she did include every non-remixed song of the era on the album, but on the bad side, this song is a tad too long for me.  It does share a lot with “SAKURA ~Hanagasumi~” for sure, but being almost 7 minutes is a bit much for me.  I loved her vocals since they were so pretty in the arrangement and the harmonizations were just tight.  I liked this…but I would’ve enjoyed an album version of it at least.

12. 16

Since the last three songs are ballads, we’d have to get the other new song out of the way huh?  Of the ballads on the album, 16 seems to be the most basic of them, but also the calmest of the bunch which doesn’t force Mika to get soooo dramatic.  I think it’s probably the best ballad off the album and that’s coming from so many strings/piano based ones from the album.

13. Nagareboshi

Yeah, this is what I mean by forgettable.  At the time, Nagareboshi came off as really sweetly done and pretty, that is until the singles after it were basically carbon copies of one another and I lost interest in this song.  While it isn’t my favorite A-side of the era anymore, I think it’s the best of the piano/strings ballads.

14. SONG FOR A WISH

Closing the album off, is the only digital release of the era.  SONG FOR A WISH begins nicely enough with piano and cello before Mika starts singing.  I do like when she sings in a quieter tone since her voice sounds right for ballads.  Might be a little too blah for some people, but I think it did quite nicely closing up the album.

Tracks Recommended

  • GAME
  • LONELY STAR
  • BABY BABY BABY
  • 16
  • SPIRAL

Song of Avoidance

  • ALWAYS

Why is that Mika’s studio albums feel like friggin best-ofs.  I swear this has been her poorest era since her debut with such bad choices in A-sides.  Also we the huge amount of B-sides there was just no reason for lazying up and essentially leaving us with ONLY two new songs.  Either way though, those two songs were great LOL.  I don’t know, but “VOICE” runs circles round this album…and it’s a good idea that Mika is taking a hiatus for the time being.