The final of the singles post is the overall best and worst of 2011….not much to choose from but at least it was enough for the year ^_^
9GOATS BLACK OUT – draw
Chiaki Takahashi – Kon’ya wa Chupa♡Riko
Daichi Miura – Turn Off The Light
Momoiro Clover Z – D’ no Junjou
TOKYO GIRLS’ STYLE – Kodou no Himitsu/Sayonara, Arigatou.
YELLOW FRIED CHICKENz – THE END OF THE DAY
YUKI – Hello!
Zwei – Kaze no Senritsu
The 5 that were pretty damn good but didn’t make it!
So in overall goodness there wasn’t a whole lot to choose from this year XD. I loved the return of an actually good release from Tommy heavenly6 with monochrome rainbow since both tracks were harder hitting and just much more memorable when compared to “I KILL MY HEART. One More Time by Porno Graffitti had three songs that were actually above average for me and while I’d say the leading track is still the best, it was their best for a long time! One of the last single to be released in 2011, Kudokinagara Azabu Juuban is seriously SDN48’s best single though it’s questionable to whether it’s their final single or not. Still 4 songs that ended up sounding great is a surprise (I mean I don’t think any AKB or sub-group wise has come near that yet). Even though it’s only two songs and both were A-sides, ikimono-gakari’s Waratteitanda/NEW WORLD MUSIC were both songs I kind of needed to hear from them after their run with so many ballads previous. School Food Punishment rarely disappoints me but I thought RPG was the better single this year because it’s more of what I liked about em and the B-sides were pretty good as well.
10. Akiko Hasegawa – Sourin no Pendulum
To begin the top 10, I started off with Sourin no Pendulum which is a pretty great single. I thought the A-side was actually handled quite well for being an animu tune and Akiko’s vocals sound rather better than before which is good. However, it was Fateful Actor and Fateful Actor (Relieve ver.) that really caught my eyes since both are jazzy songs and the latter kind of smooths it out even further. Just an overall great single from someone I didn’t expect to have one XD
9. Perfume – Spice
Perfume really hasn’t had a memorable year IMO, but I will say thought that Spice ended up making the list this year. The leading track kind of reminds me of how “Baby cruising Love” turned out and that’s good because it’s a much more laidback and relaxing kind of electro song. Plus the chorus is quite catchy hahaha. Though just like Akiko’s single, the clear reason was mainly for the single’s B-side in GLITTER. I needed an energetic song and while “Laser Beam” sort of did it, it wasn’t enough until this song was finally released in full and I just loved it to death. It’s just a good package for sure!
8. ONE OK ROCK – Re:make/NO SCARED
I have to say the ONE OK ROCK surprised me this year with their releases…Especially this big hitter. Re:make is just the rock song I needed to hear this year and it’s explosive and in your face, plus Taka’s gritty vocals just fit this perfectly! NO SCARED did it even further by making the song louder and screamo-filled but I didn’t care since it was just as powerful as “Re:make” if not more. Funny enough that I felt that Rock, Scissors, Paper was in between the moods of the two song. It’s just a very epic single from a band that I would love to see more in 2012.
7. Morning Musume – Kono Chikyuu no Heiwa wo Honki de Negatterun da yo!/Kare to Issho ni Omise ga Shitai!
It’s not surprising to see that I would put Ai-chan’s final single on the list, but it was a damn good single compared to the other two released this year. Kono Chikyuu no Heiwa wo Honki de Negatterun da yo! was more of a nostalgic trip to the big and popular days when “LOVE Machine” took over the airwaves. It just has that spark that’s pretty great to hear and all the members sound pretty good. Kare to Issho ni Omise ga Shitai! was a pretty nice surprise as well since it’s all youthful and just full of life as well. Plus we get to hear Sayu actually lead a song for once and she kicked ass (but sweetly). Of course there’s also Ai-chan’s song, Jishin Motte Yume wo Motte Tobitatsu Kara which has seriously grown on me because of the 10th gen auditions. It’s a good graduation song and Ai does sing it quite well. Just three different sides to Momosu and they all turned out great!
6. TOKYO GIRLS’ STYLE – Liar/W.M.A.D
Most people would be surprised that I chose this overall more than “Limited addiction” but other than the primary A-side the rest was bad hahaha. Liar might be similar to their last A-side but it’s one of those moments where its *if it’s not broken why fix it?* and it worked once again since I’m loving Liar quite equally to “Limited addiction and it’s got spunk and great vocals. W.M.A.D luckily wasn’t the cute song and it seems the group wants to move away from that and I’m happy because this is a good move for them. I actually preferred it over “Liar” which is great! Liar -Royal Mirrorball Mix- has more of subdued kind of sound and personally is one of RM’s better sounding remixes with TG’S. Pretty fun single and one of the stands out in 2011.
5. DUSTZ – Criez
It wasn’t going to be a surprise that DUSTZ were going end up on the list either, especially with Criez. Like I’ve said in the best A-sides post, it’s just dark and has a good punch to it and Ray’s singing styles in the song…just great! Swallow also stood out since it’s kind of one of those hopeful songs with a positive message in it. Plus the addition of synths was a nice touch in comparison to “Criez” darker rock sound. Just a great single from them this year!
4. Tsuki Amano – CORE
The earliest single to be released in 2011, CORE managed to leave a pretty epic mark on me this year. I was hoping for something for Tsuki since she became an indies artist again and finally after all this time, we finally got this song which has hard guitars and synths all about. Plus the chorus is pretty epic as well. BLACK HOLE also kept with the synths and produced a rather cute song to be opposite of “CORE”. I thought that was kind of cool to do and at some points, the melody kind of reminds me of the A-side but not straight on. It’s a good mixture of serious and cute on one disc and I liked it a lot!
3. Namie Amuro – NAKED/Fight Together/Tempest
There’s always seems to be at least one Namie single that impresses me a lot in a year and this time it’s her triple A-side. NAKED was just fun to listen to and since it was produced by Shinichi Osawa, the song was going to be a dance hit and it just sounds awesome (plus, making allusions to getting naked is a winner for me XD). On the flipside, Fight Together was my favorite A-side of the year from Namie and it just sounds like it fits the One Piece series almost perfectly. I mean it sounds like a watery tune and the sneaky pirates…it just works. Then we get the dramatic ballad in Tempest and ties the whole single together in a nice and pretty bow. I will admit that ballads aren’t my interest but this sounded like she gave it all here and I loved it!
2. Anna Tsuchiya – UNCHAINED GIRL
Anna Tsuchiya surprised me with releasing the single because I didn’t think she could pull off multiple styles on one single but she did haha. Her cover of The Beegee’s STAYIN’ ALIVE wasn’t the most faithful of cover songs but she twisted it her way to give us a more rockin’ (and slightly jazzier version) of it. It’s a fun song to listen to for sure! She then tackles electro for the second A-side in JUICY GIRL feat. The SAMOS. It also seems to mix her rock side and in some cases, it reminds me of “Bangalicious” but that’s good since I love those kind of songs. Master Blaster though is just all kinds of awesomeness to be honest. I mean the intro is quite powerful and the way it moved throughout was just wow to me. I will say it’s my favorite of the single but it doesn’t mean the others are just as great either. Just powerful and yet so good! Great and unexpected single from Anna.
1. Berryz Koubou – Ai no Dangan
I think most people will be surprised that I chose this over something like “UNCHAINED GIRL” because they’re simply an idol group…but they can release some epic stuff as well. Ai no Dangan might be their second peak of their edgy rock songs after “Otakebi Boy WAO!” but this song had equal lines which sets it apart from some of their other A-sides which is great! Powerful and rockin and god Risako’s shouting of ~AI NO DANGAN!!!!~ is orgasmic! Let’s not forget Omoide though, which is more towards a synthy sound but it’s quite the song and it kind of reminds me of Emomosu’s songs but a little more feisty with the synths. Yup this was definitely my favorite single overall this year to be honest!
- °C-ute – Momoiro Sparkling
- Haruka Tomatsu – Oh My God♥
- Hitomi Shimatani – Kantan ni Ietanara
- kanon×kanon – Koi no Doutei
- KOKIA – Sakura no Ki no Shita/Hikari no Kata e
- mihimaru GT – Masterpiece
- Miliyah Kato – Yuushatachi
- Not yet – Perapera Perao
- RAINBOW – Mach
- Shoko Nakagawa – Sakurairo
- Tomato n’ Pine – Jingle Girl Joui Jidai
- YELLOW FRIED CHICKENz – ALL MY LOVE/YOU ARE THE REASON
The 5 that didn’t impress me!
There were a bit more stinkers this year more than great which is sad but it’s whatever. HoMin’s Superstar kind of failed for me this year primarily because it was more of the same after their last single plus they abused auto-tune to a pretty sad degree. MIYAVI shouldn’t have released WHAT’S MY NAME e.p. because it was the same song played over and over but with different guitarists from other groups. It just seemed very redundant at the least to me. to by Kaori Mochida was pretty damn boring and it was just only one song that sounded like rejected “NIU” material…weirder that they chose to postpone this release because of the earthquake…tbh was it necessary with this one? The problem with Satsuki’s SYMPATHY was the fact that it had a boring A-side plus a song that was already released prior…kind of lazy release if you as me! Finally, °C-ute’s Momoiro Sparkling was such a disappointment after how explosive their last single was. It was just random to see the girls go from epic to too cutesy (though it is their name so….hmmm). Still…the B-side was just atrocious though btw.
10. Sukima Switch – Saigo no Hi
Beginning this 10, Sukima Switch starts with a rather boring single in Saigo no Hi. I’m just not into the song very much because it drags the entire time, plus it’s a long song as well which putting together is a nono. The small beam of light was in Denwaki but that was also a little too long for me…but it sounded alright. The worst was Human relations though…why did it have to be so damn boring and includes no singing…just 9 minutes of Takuya talking…WHY!!!!
9. Lia – Kimi ga Hitori Nanka ja Nai yo/Song of Life
I didn’t think Lia could make a rather boring single out of this but she did! Kimi ga Hitori Nanka ja Nai yo and Song of Life both suffer from the basic outlook which might be good for some people because she does have the vocals but the music was so boring and basic. There were two more version of both songs and they did really do much for them. It’s just such a white single…needed more color to be honest!
8. Angela Aki – Hajimari no Ballad/I Have a Dream
The same thing could be applied to Angela Aki’s single. Both Hajimari no Ballad and I Have a Dream both have really nice vocals but they’re put to such boring arrangements that it was a chore to listen to the single altogether. However, what makes this single just a little more worse is that Creep exists. I mean good vocals…but no solid emotion to make it worthwhile makes this cover just kind disppointing…IN A MAJOR WAY!
7. JUJU – YOU/BELOVED
Another single that has the SAME problem? Jeeze! Like the previous two, JUJU also suffered a boring single this year with the same ole good vocals, but poor arrangement. I mean given that YOU on the single is a VERY SMALL smidge upgrade from the album cut but it’s still rather boring and plain. Which also accounts to why her version of GLAY’s BELOVED turned out just as boring as well. Just couldn’t stand listening to this single!
6. Momoi Haruko – Yoake no Samba
Now we’re at the point where the vocals are just as bad as the music. Momoi’s singles haven’t been that great and this one kind of disappointed me on levels. I mean I think Yoake no Samba has grown slightly on me but to many people it’s just cute overflowing and her vocals just don’t sound as good as it usually is elsewhere. That being said, Live no Ato wa Samishii na was not the direction things needed to go in. It’s softer and had potential but once Momoi opened her mouth, things just kind of went downhill XD.
5. Piko – Yume Hana
Piko really needs to stop with his girly tones because I honestly prefer his deeper vocals MORE than what he pulled on Yume Hana. That song sounds way too much like its predecessors which is not good since it’s so bland and forgettable IMO. Immoral and Kodoku no Hate both also have vocals issues but the music was a little better…but damn the vocals were just not there this time around…
4. Momoiro Clover Z – Z Densetsu ~Owarinaki Kakumei~
So this year’s worst A-side makes the list as well and there’s not much to say since I’ve covered that in the A-side post and there’s just no B-side on Z Densetsu ~Owarinaki Kakumei~.
3. Minori Chihara – KEY FOR LIFE
Another year of a really BAD Minorin single…in this case it was found in her single KEY FOR LIFE. I will say that the lead track is a bit better than “Freedom Dreamer” of last year but that’s only by a small margin. However, it was Happy Kaleidoscope that really sold the deal on the list. It took what was bad out of the main track and made it more unbearable with her vocals…this is just depressing to listen to! Hitori ni Hitotsu no Eien did try to make up for the two icky songs but in return was actually a rather boring song and somewhat cheesy at the same time. Talk about three strikes and your out kind of deal!
2. Sayaka Sasaki – Zzz
I like when an artist tries to be experimentive and different from each single but Sayaka’s try at super duper cute really failed for me. Zzz and Gakkou Gakkou LIFE!! were just two bubblegum and way to cute for Sayaka and even today the former is a rather BIG wrench to her album. They tried fixing the song by including an acapella and a bossa nova version…(the latter was what should’ve been the main, but it is what it is). Crappy single overall!
1. YuiKaori – Shooting☆Smile
However, Shooting☆Smile ranks as the worst of the year because the entire package was at fault! The rather bizarre (and rather creepy) art cover to the songs. The main track was super cutesy and since I can rarely enjoy Yui Ogura’s vocals, it came at a head with this song and I just couldn’t take much more of it. CUE the Future ~”Q” no Theme~ might have sounded less like the uber cuteness of the A-side, but hell it continued over in some way in the B-side which is more or less the same feeling I have towards it….Yeah….hated this single for sure!
NEXT TIME, MINI-ALBUMS!!!!!