Kurayami Monogatari

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Tommy february6 / Tommy heavenly6 – FEBRUARY & HEAVENLY March 3, 2012

Filed under: Tommy february6,Tommy heavenly6 — solarblade @ 1:56 pm

Track Listing

  1. HOT CHOCOLAT
  2. GIMME GIMME GIMME
  3. I’M YOUR ANGEL
  4. MY FUTURE BOY
  5. LAST SLOW DANCE
  6. GOOD NIGHT MY SWEET DAY
  7. I HOLD YOUR NIGHT

Track Listing

  1. CALL ME PRINCESS
  2. HATE YOUR LIES
  3. I’M YOUR DEVIL -SHORT-
  4. YOU HURT ME
  5. monochrome rainbow
  6. DARK DARK SKY
  7. I’M YOUR DEVIL HALLOWEEN REMIX

FEBRUARY side

1. HOT CHOCOLAT

Starting with FEBRUARY’s side, it’s been a long time since we’ve heard new material from her and HOT CHOCOLAT was actually a great song to come back to since it has this fun 80’s pop there and mixes in this gritty synth for the verses before letting it get all kinds of synthy in the chorus.  It’s really good and even though it’s the only song MALIBU CONVERTIBLE produces it stood out in this entire release…LOVE IT!

2. GIMME GIMME GIMME

At first it was thought that this was going to be an ABBA cover but it doesn’t seem so because the melody is different and Tomoko is singing purely in Japanese which doesn’t follow the melody.  When I heard this song, I kind of got this feeling that it’s trying to be nostalgic by sounding like stuff from her first album and a little of “je t’aime ★ je t’aime” almost.  Not bad and I can see she’s returned to her lazy style of singing to which was a shtick she’s stuck with as february.

3. I’M YOUR ANGEL

I’m so happy that this wasn’t just a feb. version of “I’M YOUR DEVIL” even though titles are opposites of one another.  I feel like I’ve heard this somewhere before almost like “Futari no Seaside” but less beach-y.  I do get vibes from her sophomore album here though.  Besides that I don’t remember this one much besides calling it the “Tommy airline*” song.

4. MY FUTURE BOY

Besides “HOT CHOCOLAT”, I think MY FUTURE BOY is my favorite off this disc.  I felt like her darker-tinged february songs were a lot more impressive and had a different feeling against the lyrics mixed with the arrangement.  I liked this song since it flowed nicely and Tomoko sounds rather good with the arrangement.  Good overall!

5. LAST SLOW DANCE

Then the next song kind of confused me just a little bit.  Since the song from her best-of, she’s been leaning towards using guitars in her music and while I thought this was moving february towards a more serious tone, I kind of have the notion that she doesn’t need this (because she has heavenly for that).  Though I do love that the song has this 80’s slow dance going since it reminds me of those proms in the movies and songs like this would play.  I thought that was cool.  As a song altogether, it’s a bit too slow but it does its job and Tomoko sounds nice.

6. GOOD NIGHT MY SWEET DAY

I love the bass riff out of this song for sure.  It’s an interesting song for me and I love various points of the song like the middle of the song where there’s a heavily filtered voice that takes over.  As I listened to the song it was an interesting song but it didn’t capture my attention as well as many of the other songs did.

7. I HOLD YOUR NIGHT

As we near the half point of the release, the final february song is another ballad from Tomoko and I’m surprised that it’s a little more natural than other ballads under this pseudonym.  I mean it’s still no “I’LL BE YOUR ANGEL” or anything but it manages to not be very offensive and she pulls off the ending feel quite nicely.  Kind of dramatic basically but it’s nice nonetheless.

HEAVENLY side

1. CALL ME PRINCESS

Moving to the heavenly side of things, we kick things off with CALL ME PRINCESS which actually feels like she’s going back to her earlier grungy side with pounding guitar chords and overall heavy sound.  I mean it does have a certain “I KILL MY HEART” vibe to it, but there’s something about it that sounds rather cleaner and darker but also a LOT better.  Not bad as the first song!

2. HATE YOUR LIES

Then we do get another dark-tinged song with HATE YOUR LIES but unlike having a “I KILL MY HEART” it sounds strong and metal and just in its own state of awesomeness.  I actually get shivers listening to this and there’s a couple of heavenly songs that do that like “PAPERMOON” and “Heavy Starry Chain”.  Those three share this attitude that I love and mixing with Tomoko’s great vocals…this was pretty epic.  My personal favorite off this side!

3. I’M YOUR DEVIL -SHORT-

I’m so happy they added the original take of I’M YOUR DEVIL on here because not many people were feeling the long version of the song and personally, I also wanted a short version too.  It’s still pretty much in your face and full of attitude and parts where Tomoko is speak-yelling.  I still love the song for the most part and it’s basically my second favorite after “HATE YOUR LIES”.  Still for a song that’s been out the longest, I’m happy she redeemed herself with this.

4. YOU HURT ME

I swear, YOU HURT ME sounds almost like a “PAPERMOON” clone because they have a similar pace and the chords kind of go hand in hand in some parts.  I will say that I found myself loving this song too for some reason.  I’m just loving the chords of this and it sounds a lot of effort went into the arrangement here.  It’s just damn good!

5. monochrome rainbow

I’m a bit surprised to see that monochrome rainbow make the list even though it was an A-side.  Meaning that the heavenly side does in fact have less new tracks than february’s.  Funny that on the album, I found this to be the weakest on heavenly’s side.  I’m not sure why but it doesn’t feel like enough effort was put here and I get memories of “Unlimited Sky” here as well.  I think it was better off as just an A-side.

6. DARK DARK SKY

As the last new song on the album, DARK DARK SKY also gave me a little bit of “Unlimited Sky” vibes but this is kind of creepy at the same time so it kind of harkens back to her first two albums moreso.  I kind of like the song’s atmosphere and her unenthusiastic way of singing the song stood out as well.  Pretty solid of a track but the other songs minus “monochrome rainbow” surpass it.

7. I’M YOUR DEVIL HALLOWEEN REMIX

I felt this was just unneeded to be on this release for sure.  I mean we already concluded that most people would prefer the short version than the extended (which if you haven’t noticed this version clocks in at 10:31…you know like the date of Halloween…like she’s done with “Lollipop Candy ♥BAD♥ girl”.  I even think it’s a bit too long winded.  If you like the humorous Engrish then you’ll be laughing through this but otherwise, I would stick to the short version.

Tracks Recommended

  • HOT CHOCOLAT
  • MY FUTURE BOY
  • I HOLD YOUR NIGHT
  • HATE YOUR EYES
  • YOU HURT ME
  • I’M YOUR DEVIL -SHORT-

Song of Avoidance

  • GOOD NIGHT MY SWEET DAY
  • monochrome rainbow

I’m going to talk bout the two sides then altogether.  FEBRUARY has been a long time coming and while we did get one new song between her last single and this release…I was expecting a lot.  I will say that it is a bit of a bummer but I think it’s because all the songs (minus HOT CHOCOLAT) was produced by one guy and that left me disappointed (then again HEAVENLY’s was done mostly by the same producer too).  I guess I was expecting a bit more from this but whatever…it was a release and it wasn’t THAT bad.

HOWEVER, HEAVENLY’s side surprised the hell out of me at how good it sounded and how back to form she really got.  I mean besides the lead-in single (which honestly shouldn’t been on here) all the songs were pretty good and kept that heavenly charm that I loved!

Altogether though, it’s actually a pretty likeable release but I’m sure many would’ve rather seen a full release from both sides rather than a joint release.  I can agree because I don’t think 7 songs for each was enough and HEAVENLY with literally only 4 new songs so I don’t know but this release was pretty impressive if only just the HEAVENLY side.

 

Do As Infinity – TIME MACHINE

Filed under: Do As Infinity — solarblade @ 7:34 am

Track Listing

  1. TIME MACHINE
  2. Ariadne no Ito
  3. Why?
  4. PRIDE
  5. Tasogare
  6. Chikai
  7. Otogibanashi
  8. Koi Uta
  9. Sun Shower
  10. Mou Hitori no Boku e
  11. Kimi no Tame ni Ima Dekiru Koto
  12. Go Ahead!

1. TIME MACHINE

Of course, it’s no surprise that DAI decides to open pretty powerfully with TIME MACHINE since they’ve seen to do so the last couple of albums they’ve released.  I love the energetic flow of the song and hearing synths being involved did surprise me but they seem to make it work quite nicely.  Van’s vocals are always at a good pace for me and she still sounds very nice but I get an anime opening kind of feel for the song.  However, it doesn’t really feel very powerful after a while and kind of just slides to the wayside.

2. Ariadne no Ito

Which is good in this case because Ariadne no Ito is pretty damn good and makes up for the rather disappointing title track.  I loved the hell out of this song last year and it keeps impressing me everytime I listen because it’s like they got this ping to just rock out in all kinds of fury.  It’s just DAI at their best here and hearing Van’s edgy vocals and Ryo’s epic guitar playing and you get this song…My favorite song off this album.

3. Why?

More synths seem to build upon Why? which is a bit like “TIME MACHINE” but less focused on the rock-side and more towards a poppier side.  I didn’t get a good feel for the song because unlike the powerful “Ariadne no Ito”, it felt tired and lacked a lot of potential energy here. 

4. PRIDE

Haha, I got anime intro vibes from PRIDE as well which shouldn’t be surprising but whatever, I feel like this song is also lacking a lot of oomph where it should have a bigger boost of sound and arrangement because I love Van’s vocals but the light atmosphere doesn’t work here.  Like I said, Van sounds great in the song so it isn’t as a tragedy like “Why?”.

5. Tasogare

As the era’s ballad-typed A-side, Tasogare still kind of rubs me with the fact that it’s sort of a folk ballad than just the regular old ballad feel but it’s because of the way Van is singing as well as the usage of flutes for the song.  It’s no “Fukai Mori” but it’s a little tease if you get what I mean.  It’s nice and it is better than our next song but this is pretty nice overall.

6. Chikai

Kind of odd though because when I first heard it, I was pretty content with this song but hearing it on the album makes me think it’s just the throwaway of the A-sides because it sounds similar to a lot of the new songs on the album which is just a little bit of a turnoff.  At least the chorus tries to save the song from mediocrity for me and I respect that because I do enjoy the chorus. 

7. Otogibanashi

The second half of the album is luckily purely new songs starting with Otogibanashi.  To me it’s kind of ranked in sound alongside “TIME MACHINE” and “Chikai” since it’s just a pop/rock track but lacks the energy to be epic and all kinds of awesome.  After a while the song gets better and Van does put a lot of vocal energy out there but the arrangement is still kind of suffering here.  Though I will say that I’m considering this to be my favorite of the new songs.

8. Koi Uta

As a mid-tempo song, Koi Uta does stand out a little bit because it does have a lot of Ryo’s guitarwork in the song which is good and all but I’m a little disappointed that it’s to a song like this because it kind of moves at a snail’s pace (and it reminds me of their ending themes).  I guess it’ll be good for some people, but otherwise I’m just kind of like bleh.

9. Sun Shower

I have to say, I’m starting to get a little tired of this album already.  Sun Shower is kind of the lighthearted songs that I heard back on “EIGHT”, which I guess is nice and all but not on this album because this tune is feeling trite and just a little plain all over for me.  I like Van hitting the higher notes and all…it’s just a little forgetful.

10. Mou Hitori no Boku e

I’m happy to see that another song actually caught me by surprise with Mou Hitori no Boku e which sounds like a much better mid-tempo than all the others.  It has a nice sound overall and has a good amount of both members so I can’t bash it too hard.  I think the melody is a little more attention-grabbing than most songs on here though!

11. Kimi no Tame ni Ima Dekiru Koto

Another ballad finds its way onto the album but at least this one includes a bit of acoustic guitar here.  It’s a nice try in my opinion but I feel like “Tasogare” far outranks this song by a mile since this sounds like a lot of their ballads of the same tone and feel.  I guess it’s alright, but I don’t find anything very memorable about it.

12. Go Ahead!

Finally closing the album, Go Ahead! kind of reminisces “TIME MACHINE” as they’re bright and good songs hampered by a lack of interest or energy that a couple of other songs have.  I will say it barely passes the title track by a small amount because Van and Ryo do a good job in various parts of the song but otherwise…it’s alright.

Tracks Recommended

  • Ariadne no Ito
  • Otogibanashi
  • Tasogare
  • Go Ahead!
  • Mou Hitori no Boku e

Song of Avoidance

  • Why?

After listening through this album I felt so tired of it at the end.  It’s like they took leftovers from both “EIGHT” and “ETERNAL FLAME” and just threw it on this album along with the A-sides which were good for the most part.  However the rest felt lazy and just lacked the reasons why I like the two albums above better.  I was just very disappointed in this album and I hope they can step it up on their next one.