oveRtaKerS feat. RYUICHI KAWAMURA×SUGIZO
FIRE feat. KLAYTON from Celledweller
Super Precious Love
melodies feat. Hiroaki Hayama on piano
The Double Ace
1. oveRtaKerS feat. RYUICHI KAWAMURA×SUGIZO
It’s no surprise the album kicks off with the only A-side to represent the album and it’s also yuri’s return from baby leave so that’s pretty awesome. Now, this song is interesting because of Ryuichi being the main male vocals here and he sounds good and all but a little bored as with yuri and motsu as well. There’s just something missing in the song to make it strong and I seriously have a hard time remembering this song, but I guess it makes for a OK collaboration. SUGIZO was the only one that was memorable and he was playing guitar…
I guess by the way it’s looking to be, this album is going to sound like something in between “Deep Calm” and “GRID” but that’s ok because I miss the rockin’ side to the groups music and with SAKULA they’ve got it quite nicely. yuri’s vocals sound quite vibrant and mixes in with the synths and guitars presented and of course motsu adding with his lines makes it a complete package. It’s actually not that bad.
Unlike “SAKULA’s” focus on the guitars, STRAYED is definitely more for the synths and bleeps and I also found myself entranced by this song quite nicely. It’s not as electronic like some of their stuff on the last few albums so this really does stand out. Still it’s not as energetic as I would like it to be, but it’s definitely danceable and has a good rhythm and style to keep it afloat.
Seeing as this was used in the Initial D series, once again I was having hopes to have it epic but it surprised me a bit. I thought it was going to be a rock song giving the opening and such, but once yuri comes in it slows down to a more piano-based song that screams “Deep Calm” vibes. Once motsu returns, the guitars also come back. Sadly, this song didn’t really sound all that interesting and lacked energy….and this was for Initial D…which is even more saddening.
5. EX B.F.
At least things get a bit better with the next track. I love the opening melody with the guitars and reminds me of stuff that was on some of their older stuff. I love that it’s also lighter and in a more happier mood. While the song does suffer a little on tempo, it makes up for a catchy arrangement and pretty good vocals from both members.
6. FIRE feat. KLAYTON from Celledweller
Our next collaborative effort is surprising since it does have a faster tempo going and I loved the darker side to their sound that reminds me more of their “BOULDER” days. Now I never heard of Celledweller and so I’m not sure of KLAYTON’s role in the song…(guitarist perhaps?). I do think the arrangement does manage to cover yuri in some places which is meh, but the song is pretty badass!
7. Super Precious Love
~what the hell is this~ is what motsu opens the song with and does a bit of rapping as well. Being after “FIRE” this was a little weird to listen to, but it kind of fits since it cooled the jets after that song. Just like “EX B.F.”, it’s quite nice to listen something a little more upbeat and in a happier vibe. It’s pretty cool, but not as awesome as the last track.
8. melodies feat. Hiroaki Hayama on piano
Our next song definitely has “Deep Calm” written all over it for some reason and it’s probably from the gothic-like atmosphere here. Of course being the third collaboration on the album Hiroaki Hayama sounds really nice on the piano and it’s played behind filtered guitars and strings. Actually it reminds me of an old song of theirs “Nobody reason ~Noah no Hakobune~”. Not as much dabbling in R&B, but this does have the same longing emotion…good song.
9. Viking Boat
The next song picks up from the slow-paced “melodies” in a nice way since the song has some interesting dark electro vibes going on. However, unlike the other songs on the album, this one like “oveRtaKerS” feels like is missing something important but I’m not sure what that really is. It just feels oddly empty for me.
10. I’m alive
Where I felt “Viking Boat” was empty, I’m alive fixes things up in a good way at least. It’s not as explosive, but still feels like it’s complete and yuri gives a much better performance as well. It’s not one of the best songs on the album but it’s pretty good for what it is I guess.
11. Champagne Tower
As the final new track on the album, Champagne Tower sounds quite interesting since it’s not really like any of the other tracks by sounding upbeat and the rhythm is pretty bouncy and fun to listen to. It’s a little basic for them but both members pull it off a lot better than the last few songs.
12. The Double Ace
Closing the album is the B-side from “oveRtaKerS” and like “BIRD” was used in the Initial D series. Which is odd because I very much choose this over “BIRD” anyday because it has the right energy and it’s pretty much synth-based all the way as it should be really. I’ve slightly gotten used to the song since the single’s release, but it still doesn’t rank up their with previous efforts from the group.
Song of Avoidance
So after about three albums returning to something more electro it seems that the duo opted for an electro/rock style ala “GRID”. It’s pretty much a good move, but it seemed that with oveRtaKerS SPIRIT, it lacks something to keep it memorable. I just can’t find myself fully enjoying this as much as I did with “Dream Again”.