Kurayami Monogatari

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AKB48 – GIVE ME FIVE! February 14, 2012

Filed under: AKB48 — solarblade @ 11:21 am

Track Listing

  1. GIVE ME FIVE!
  2. Sweet & Bitter (Selection 6)
  3. NEW SHIP (Special Girls A) (Type A only)
  4. Hitsujikai no Tabi (Special Girls B) (Type B only)
  5. Jung ya Freud no Baai (Special Girls C) (Theater Edition only)
  6. GIVE ME FIVE! (off vocal ver.)
  7. Sweet & Bitter (off vocal ver.)
  8. NEW SHIP (off vocal ver.)
  9. Hitsujikai no Tabi (off vocal ver.)
  10. Jung ya Freud no Baai (off vocal ver.)

1. GIVE ME FIVE!

So I don’t know how legit it is but I heard the arrangement and everything was actually performed by the girls themselves…but I’m sure there’s some shenanigans in that because I’m sure not all of the girls were involved and Aki.P had some work done with it.  Now the song itself kind of reminds me of SKE48’s “Okey Dokey” and a little of “Uekara Mariko” in a kind of mish-mash way and it has a lot of brass as well.  I’m just not into these kind of songs and I’m kind of finding myself going back to repeating the hell out of “Kaze wa Fuiteiru”…

2. Sweet & Bitter

As the B-side found on all of the editions of the single, Sweet & Bitter is done by Selection 6 (which is a unit comprised of the HUGE members, Rino Sashihara, Atsuko Maeda, Tomomi Itano, Mariko Shinoda, Yuko Oshima, and Minami Takahashi).  It’s really nice to hear these six since they are so well-known and such but to a song like this…not so much.  It does have the nostalgic cute feel to it but I don’t think it suits them very well because this could easily be a WH7 song….reminds me…where’s Mayuyu?  Kind of sounds like a song released when The Beatles were huge…like sounds like “Daydream Believer”….meh

3. NEW SHIP

The rest of the single is split between the girls…BUT they also seem to include outside members from AKB….like SKE and JKT which kind of destroys the fact that it should just be the AKB girls since not all the other girls were involved (so disappointed).  NEW SHIP has the widest amount of girls coming from 5 different groups.  Now this kind of reminds me of “GIVE ME FIVE!” but more emphasis on the guitars than the brass but I’m once again finding their lack of emotion bothersome for the most part.  Some people might like it but once again it has this summer feeling which at this point is starting to wear VERY thin on me.

4. Hitsujikai no Tabi

So the second group has them as Special Girls B and it’s a bit more nicer with distribution of members of the core AKB (only two members from SKE48 are found here).  Now, looking at the member list most of them are the pitchy girls and they kind of has pass/fail vocals but for Hitsujikai no Tabi isn’t that bad.  As a ballad, it’s not very mind-blowing but it’s really soft and nice to listen to.  A lot better than “NEW SHIP” IMO.

5. Jung ya Freud no Baai

Which brings us to the song sung by Special Girls C (which I’m guessing is the rest of the girls that weren’t involved in the previous three songs and possibly some more members from the other groups).  When it comes to this song it’s kind of unfortunate that it had to be the last song (though good that it’s found on a different edition than the other versions).  Why you may ask?  It sounds a little too similar to “Hitsujikai no Tabi”.  Meaning it’s also one of those ballads that has a goodbye feeling to it.  One the flipside of the coin, this is the preferred ballad here since it has that chorus-y feel like “Sakura no Shiori” but not as epic.  My question is though…for a title that translates to Jung & Freud’s Situation…I’m left wondering why a title for such a ballad?  Hmmmm perplexing!

 

 

So kicking 2012 off, AKB of course at this time would usually release a Sakura-themed single…y’know like “Sakura no Shiori” and “Sakura no Ki ni Narou” but they changed it up this year by letting the girls play instruments for the song (which might be legit…but could also be a lie, who knows).  GIVE ME FIVE! is a bold move since it’s a little idol and a little ska (way more believeable than Momosu’s “Maji Desu ka Ska! at least) but still not up to par and left a rather meh mark on me.  Same thing with NEW SHIP but the problem lies with its bland arrangement and overused summer theme.  Sweet & Bitter had a chance to be amazing but I felt major Watarirouka Hashiritai 7 vibes (even though it’s sung by 6 of the most popular members!)…it was interesting at the least.  I have to say though that the best songs were oddly enough the ballads of the single.  Hitsujikai no Tabi might not be way up to snuff but it has this acoustic touch that I’m kind of liking.  Jung ya Freud no Baai though was a pretty good ballad and had all the goods for one as well…Overall, this was a pretty blah single for them…I’m waiting for me next dark song from them TBQH…

 

LIL – LUCKY STAR

Filed under: LIL — solarblade @ 1:13 am

Track Listing

  1. LUCKY STAR
  2. THIS LOVE
  3. THIS LOVE (Exclusive Club Mix)
  4. LUCKY STAR (Instrumental)
  5. THIS LOVE (Instrumental)

1. LUCKY STAR

It’s been a while since we’ve heard from the duo so it’s nice they came back with LUCKY STAR which brings back the group’s more grittier club sound and I approve of that for sure.  Of course ucio is under a lot of auto-tune but her unique vocals still stand out and it sounds a lot better than a lot of stuff from “LIPS IN LUSH”.  Still, I find myself enjoying the arrangement from TSUGE…it’s impressive and he does transition into different styles like a little march and even smaller touch of dubstep.  Most of the time though it’s straightforward electro and I enjoyed it a lot!

2. THIS LOVE

The B-side of the release is actually a cover of the well-known Maroon 5 song and I was surprised they’d actually cover an American tune.  Unlike the bouncy, happy pop/rock of the original it’s giving an electro touch and I’m sad to say but I didn’t really enjoy it very much.  I actually would’ve preferred ucio without the auto-tune for the song and the arranging during the chorus was weak and quite bluntly annoying for me.  Meh…

3. THIS LOVE (Exclusive Club Edit)

Which is weird because the club edit did make it a little easier to listen to but it has a lot of the same elements (granted because it’s just lengthened to be used in clubs and all that).  I hear a little more piano and guitars as well which is odd because I didn’t pay attention enough there.  I still don’t really enjoy it since the same problems from the original are here as well. 

 

 

As it’s a digital release, I would’ve thought they’d do well putting it out for physical release because LUCKY STAR is actually pretty good for them.  Then again it was the only real good song on the single.  THIS LOVE isn’t really suited for them and to me it felt a little jagged and unpolished.  I guess it would’ve worked better without all the auto-tune but it’s w/e…