Kurayami Monogatari

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ClariS – Naishou no Hanashi January 30, 2012

Filed under: ClariS — solarblade @ 9:56 pm

Track Listing

  1. Naishou no Hanashi
  2. I’m in love
  3. Hontou wa
  4. Naishou no Hanashi -Instrumental-

1. Naishou no Hanashi

I’m not exactly sure why but I’m not really into Naishou no Hanashi for some reason.  The main reason I did get into ClariS was the fact that their A-sides have been all kinds of awesome and synthy stuff.  This time they replaced all the synths with rock instruments and took the auto-tune out of the vocals.  It’s a bit of a odd switch of genres but there’s some good things like the verses and the vocals…but I rather have stuff like “Connect” and “nexus”…

2. I’m in love

At least the B-side brought back something similar to their synth stuff.  I’m in love does remind me of the reasons I didn’t enjoy any of the B-sides from “nexus”.  It’s a bit too laidback but once again, I’m liking the less-synthed vocals which surprises me.  Of course the chorus also brought me in as well.  It’s pretty good actually after getting used to it for a bit.

3. Hontou wa

The other B-side is actually a ballad…hmmm odd.  Hontou wa is kind of nice but at the same time kind of boring and not very memorable at the least.  I will say the vocals impressed me a bit though so it saves the song from being entirely a failed attempt.

 

 

I will say that this was a step up from “nexus” since all the songs had something nice about them.  Naishou no Hanashi might take some time to get used to since it’s not like their previous efforts.  I’m in love and Hontou wa were both still a little under expectations…but vocally it was actually quite nice.  I guess I can remember this single better actually.

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ayaka – The beginning

Filed under: ayaka — solarblade @ 9:22 pm

Track Listing

  1. Hajimari no Toki
  2. Hello
  3. Akai Sora
  4. The beginning
  5. HIKARI
  6. Sora yo Onegai
  7. Tsunagaru Kokoro
  8. THIS IS THE TIME
  9. Soko Made Aruite Iku yo
  10. Egao no Canvas
  11. Magic Mind
  12. Kimi e
  13. Yasashii Ao

1. Hajimari no Toki

Kicking off ayaka’s return to the music industry, we start with the promotional song for the album!  To be honest, I was worried on how she was going to sound due to her reason she went on hiatus, plus her new label as well.  To be honest, she sounds powerful and she really sung Hajimari no Toki out very well.  The music is also quite nice and it doesn’t seem she lost any of her spark.  Good choice to promote the album ^_^

2. Hello

I will say that I miss her upbeat pop/rock songs and Hello reminded me of the good days but in a good way because Hello is quite awesome actually.  I’m surprised we get to hear her sing in a more deeper tone which sounds pretty good but the odd thing is is that I get YUI vibes from the song hahaha.  Still, it’s pretty damn good and I’m loving this track right now!

3. Akai Sora

After that burst of energy, Akai Sora comes in and tones things down quite a bit.  I will say that was an odd slide down but the song is kind of cute in a way with the keyboard melody.  Unfortunately, it really does take a while to get into the song because it doesn’t really grow much and it stays on this bouncy rhythm that kind of gets tiring.  The chorus does sound good though, I can’t lie about that…but the verses are pretty meh for me.  It’s def a track to warm up to.

4. The beginning

As the the title track and longest one of the bunch (at 5:50), I didn’t expect a title like this be the 4th song on the album hahaha.  Taking it a bit more simpler than “Hajimari no Toki”, it feature piano and strings and drums of course but I will say the star is ayaka herself.  She just sounds all kinds of powerful in this song.  Great ballad here!

5. HIKARI

At first I thought it was another ballad, but HIKARI is kind of not and has this bounce to it that makes it somewhat cute.  I hear some underlying synths in the song which adds a nice dimension here.  I will say that I’m surprised at how loud ayaka is but right when the chorus comes in, it kind of makes sense.  I’m a little curious at the decision at the destructive guitar mash…that was odd…but didn’t take away from the song either.  I’m kind of really enjoying this song!

6. Sora yo Onegai

I wasn’t expecting the next song to be so bare-boned of a song.  Only featuring piano and ayaka’s voice…it seemed just a little too bare against the previous songs but I will say that ayaka did what she could given the arrangement.  She’s got a rather airy style going in her voice and I’m not too big of a fan of that…but the melody was surprisingly good…hmmm I’m on the fence on this one.

7. Tsunagaru Kokoro

At least the album moves back up to a cuter song on the album.  It does sound like something she’d pull in her mind while sitting on a porch (if she plays acoustic guitar) lol.  It’s got a catchy rhythm to it and I find myself moving my head to the beat.  It’s affectious and just happy!  Maybe not my favorite, but it’s catchy as all hell lol

8. THIS IS THE TIME

Whoa, what’s with the all-caps on this song haha.  The introduction totally threw me off because I thought it was going to be a ballad but then switches into this mid-tempo pop/rock tune…almost a country vibe haha.  It’s pretty good though and kind of gives a free-form style from her…like a reserved version of “CLAP & LOVE”.

9. Soko Made Aruite Iku yo

Kind of like “The beginning”, Soko Made Aruite Iku yo is a pretty basic sounding ballad and this time I was actually bored by this one.  I’m not sure why but I don’t think the melody of the tune really makes me feel much for it and kind of reminds me of older works as well.  Still good vocals though…I don’t know if it makes up for the song though…it’s kind of ehhh there.

10. Egao no Canvas

It seems we keep going back to a cute side to ayaka.  I felt Egao no Canvas isn’t a bad song actually but it’s my least favorite of the “cute” songs on the album.  Though I will say the only major thing I remember is all of that ~sha la la la la~ parts of the song more than the actual lyrics hahah.  So I kind of forgot it in the end.

11. Magic Mind

If there was one song that I could say is kind of danceable, it’s Magic Mind.  It’s weird to think ayaka could do that but this song is kind of unique on the album and it combines the best things like acoustic guitar and ayaka’s awesome vocals.  It doesn’t have as much punch as I thought and the move into the chorus is quite anticlimatic but it still sounds really pretty.

12. Kimi e

At first I couldn’t tell what Kimi e was going to be until the electric guitar and drum beats kicked in.  I wouldn’t say it’s a ballad but it’s definitely not all upbeat either.  This kind of reminds me of her work from “First Message” actually which is a good sense of nostalgia for me.  Good song overall!

13. Yasashii Ao

Finally, closing the album out is unsurprisngly a ballad which seems to be ayaka’s thing lol.  It’s a bit hard to get through since piano/strings ballads kind of bore me to death but this is actually less memorable than friggin “Soko Made Aruite Iku yo”.  I don’t know it might be a bit sentimental, but I’m just not into this one.

Tracks Recommended

  • Hello
  • The beginning
  • Tsunagaru Kokoro
  • Hajimari no Toki
  • HIKARI

Song of Avoidance

  • Yasashii Ao

Taking a three year break will do you wonders (and of course going indies) and in the case of ayaka’s third album, The beginning really showed that she hasn’t lost her spark and she really pulled off a great album!  I will say that ballads for her can be hit or miss on the album but all the upbeat stuff really hit the spot!  Great album and I hope she gets some singles before her next album!