Kurayami Monogatari

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Watarirouka Hashiritai 7 – Shounen yo Uso wo Tsuke! May 31, 2012

Filed under: Watarirouka Hashiritai 7 — solarblade @ 6:59 am

Track Listing

  1. Shounen yo Uso wo Tsuke!
  2. Kimi wa Kangaeru
  3. Heso ga Magaru (Regular only)
  4. Shimai Donburi (Limited A only)
  5. Ren’ai Heavy Kyu Champion (Limited B only)
  6. Nante Suteki na Ahiru no Boat (Limited C only)
  7. Shounen yo Uso wo Tsuke! (Instrumental)
  8. Kimi wa Kangaeru (Instrumental)
  9. Heso ga Magaru (Instrumental)
  10. Shimai Donburi (Instrumental)
  11. Ren’ai Heavy Kyu Champion (Instrumental)
  12. Nante Suteki na Ahiru no Boat (Instrumental)

1. Shounen yo Uso wo Tsuke!

I found it interesting that they chose Shounen yo Uso wo Tsuke! as the A-side because it was released as a digital single (though the song was a theater edition) back in April.  The song is pretty cute and upbeat but there’s a lot of Mayuyu present which I kind of just bleh at this point.  I think “Kibou Sanmyaku” is a lot better. 

2. Kimi wa Kangaeru

The B-side found on all editions (except the Regular), Kimi wa Kangaeru kinds of runs the curse of the ___48 groups with a song that just sounds bland and very cheesy.  I hear more girls singing which is pretty awesome but this song sounds like some summer-themed song (“Ponytail to Chouchou” runs this first).  Just very uneventful of a song tbh.

3. Heso ga Magaru

The regular edition of the single gets one B-side and it’s a solo from Aika Oota.  The intro of Heso ga Magaru kind of reminded me of RAINBOW’s “A” with the brass and kind of push.  Aika’s vocals aren’t very strong and probably auto-tuned (a little bit) but the song is kind of cool but lacking that oomph. 

4. Shimai Donburi

The rest of the singles (minus regular) contains a second B-side but the group is split up into smaller ones for them (but Mayuyu is in all three groupings >.>).  Shimai Donburi has Mayuyu and Kazumi Urano (the new member since Natsumi got kicked out after a scandal).  Their song is riding more along the lines of cute like the A-side but a little more friendly towards an anime sound.  Mayu’s vocals are cute but I’m not sure how to feel about Kazumi’s…the song though feels so anticlimatic with the chorus…it’s just like a boner kill XD.  Just like “Heso ga Magaru”, it’s missing oomph as well.

5. Ren’ai Heavy Kyu Champion

The next track (split between Mayuyu, Haruka, Misaki, and Ayaka) it’s also cute, but this one has a little something going for it and the song isn’t missing anything from being bad.  These four sound great together even though I hear a lot of Mayu once again.  I do love the splashes of ethnic color in the song, but still retains that AKB sound…not bad.

6. Nante Suteki na Ahiru no Boat

Finally, Mayuyu joins with Aika and Mika and at first, I was enjoying the intro because I thought it was going to be a synth-fest, but not in the way that it turned out.  It has a certain 80’s flair that I enjoyed about it and it seems line distribution is a bit more open.  I wish there was more bass behind it but this wasn’t bad either.

 

 

WH7 went through some changes in between this single and their last, “Kibou Sanmyaku”.  Well notice that Natsumi Hirajima had to leave the group because of a scandal (she left the whole AKB family too!).  Then it was announced that Kazumi Urano replaced her but she’s a temporary member it seems.  To the single at hand, Shounen yo Uso wo Tsuke! isn’t that great.  Most of the single’s problems are they lack punch and there’s just too much Mayuyu…She’s got a solo career, so let the other members shine DAMNIT!!!!

 

Sakanaction – Boku to Hana

Filed under: Sakanaction — solarblade @ 5:17 am

Track Listing

  1. Boku to Hana
  2. Neptunes
  3. Rookie (Takkyu Ishino Remix)

1. Boku to Hana

Sakanaction seems to be cooling down a lot more with their A-sides and Boku to Hana might be lightest A-side I’ve heard.  It’s light and straightforward which songs like “Rookie” and “Identity” aren’t actually.  I must say as well, the arrangement reminds me of a school food punishment tune…where’s my randomness from Sakanaction?

2. Neptunes

Well, the B-side could be the closest thing to intriguing?  as we get.  However, the song kind of turns up like “Ryuusen” from their “DocumentaLy” album.  Meaning, it’s really low-key and slow and just snail-paced the entire time.  It does get more interesting towards the end but by the time you get to that point, you’re just wanting to move on and you kind of pass it over.  Just not what I was hoping for a B-side.

3. Rookie (Takkyu Ishino Remix)

Pretty cool that we get a remix of Rookie on the single but like the remix he did for school food punishment, it’s kind of repetitive and hard to keep interested because of all the repeating.  You really don’t get a lot of the song until the middle which is nice but it’s kind of like it took that long to get there.  7 minutes was just too long for this.

 

 

Sakanaction begins a new round of singles starting with Boku to Hana.  To be honest, I wasn’t impressed with this single.  The leading song was a little safe and kind of not the normal Sakanaction weirdness that I fell in love with.  Neptunes was just boring and only got better at the end…still BORING.  The remix for Rookie was also boring, but because it was repetitive and was a little too long.  I hope they fix themselves up!

 

Kanako Ito – Hisenkei Jeniakku

Filed under: Kanako Ito — solarblade @ 4:07 am

Track Listing

  1. Hisenkei Jeniakku
  2. Geometric space
  3. Another Heaven (2012 Remix Ver.)
  4. Hisenkei Jeniakku (off vocal)
  5. Geometric space (off vocal)

1. Hisenkei Jeniakku

I have to say, Hisenkei Jeniakku was something I wasn’t expecting from Kanako for some reason.  I mean I know it’s pretty anison and all that but the guitars were cool and the synths as well.  The song kind of reminds me of “Sky Clad no Kansokusha” but a little less powerful.  Not bad to be honest.

2. Geometric space

The B-side of the single, Geometic space is a little bit of a surprise because at first it starts slow and quiet, but the song grows and gets a bit more louder and the arrangement grows as well.  The song does feel like it’s missing throughout for me…but I feel like that if more was added the song would be worse…kind of on the fence for this tune.

3. Another Heaven (2012 Remix Ver.)

Talking about “Sky Clad no Kansokusha”, we get a new version of it’s B-side, Another Heaven!  I don’t get the whole remix tag because it probably should be classified as an acoustic version because that’s what it really is.  Unfortunately, listening to this kind of takes me back to her last album, “spark!” and I REALLY didn’t like that album so this was kind of like ewww.

 

 

After the failure of “spark!” (though granted it was released under a different label, her first single under 5pb. after “VECTOR” is alright for the most part but nothing exceedingly great.  Hisenkei Jeniakku is quite good and does good as an A-side for sure.  Geometric space is alright, but something is missing from making it great but I’m not sure what that is.  The new version of Another Heaven is just kind of not worth the time to listen to, stick to the original.

 

Mami Kawada – Borderland

Filed under: Mami Kawada — solarblade @ 3:41 am

Track Listing

  1. Borderland
  2. Angel // resident of the nightmare
  3. Borderland (instrumental)
  4. Angel // resident of the nightmare (instrumental)

1. Borderland

I kind of liked that she went back to synths for Borderland but added a nice layer of dark grittyneess (like “No buts!”).  It’s great to hear the song with a little more energy in it and Mami’s vocals being lighter yet cool.  I will say that her voice under filters is interesting but I like something a little different.  It’s good otherwise and ranks well with it’s fellow A-sides.

2. Angel // resident of the nightmare

Angel on the other hand kind of interested me (seems like her B-sides do that quite often, just by title).  I’m surprised because it sounds like MELL would be singing a song with the arrangement it has.  It has that signature I’ve Sound feel that I always seem to enjoy and relax too.  Mami’s vocals sound smooth and soothing as well giving this numb but good feel throughout.  Great B-side!

 

 

As it’s Mami’s 4th single before “SQUARE THE CIRCLE” finally comes out, Borderland is a good single to have before the album’s release!  Borderland might not be original in arrangement style and feel but I liked it despite that.  Angel though gives hope that I’ve hasn’t totally ditched their cool and soothing trance style and it turned out really well (even if the song sounds more fitting for MELL).  Good single overall!

 

Stereopony – stand by me

Filed under: Stereopony — solarblade @ 3:14 am

Track Listing

  1. stand by me
  2. Okami
  3. stand by me -Animation ver.-
  4. stand by me -Instrumental-
  5. Okami -Instrumental-

1. stand by me

I was hoping for a new edgy A-side to come from Stereopony and we get our wish with stand by me!  I love AIMI’s vocals in the song, it’s pretty on point and SHIHO and NOHANA of course doing their things and all three come together in a pretty strong sound.  It’s not a powerful like “Namida no Mukou” or “Smilife” but it’s still a pretty passable track. 

2. Okami

Well, if you guys wanted something edgier, then Okami might be your song.  I love the punch of the intro from the guitars and then it moves into something more progressive and energetic from the trio.  AIMI sounds cool as well…showing a lot of control in her voice and giving a powerful punch.  This would be a song that would be amazing to be heard live since there’s some crowd chanting.  What loose cannon of a song but so good!

 

 

Kicking off a new era of singles, stand by me is definitely an improvement over much of the “More! More!! More!!!” singles that were released.  stand by me brought the band back to what really impresses me about them and that’s their animu rock tunes.  Okami though was the trio rocking out, having fun, and just letting it all out!  This was a great way to start things off, *RECOMMENDED*

 

NICO Touches the Walls – Natsu no Daisankakkei

Filed under: NICO Touches the Walls — solarblade @ 12:09 am

Track Listing

  1. Natsu no Daisankakkei
  2. Yuudachi March
  3. Rappa to Musume
  4. Natsu no Daisankakkei (instrumental)
  5. Yuudachi March (instrumental)

1. Natsu no Daisankakkei

After that randomness of their last A-side, “Te wo Tatake”, it was nice to see NICO back to what they do best and that’s just rockin’ out and doing more serious sounding songs.  Natsu no Daisankakkei kind of does have “PASSENGER” waves in it but I love it for some reason.  It’s just a really solid song from the band and Tatsuya sounds great! ^_^

2. Yuudachi March

The same floaty J-rock experience can also be found on the band’s B-side, Yuudachi March.  Now it’s no march if you were assuming things but the drummer, Shotaro is doing a lot more here.  Sadly, I don’t remember this song as much as the leading track but it’s not bad at all lol.  Quite nice actually.

3. Rappa to Musume

Covering Shizuko Kasagi’s old tune, Rappa to Musume is a whole lot different from the previous two tracks and that’s no lie.  This song is gritty and kind of has this psychedelic groove akin to like Jimi Hendrix.  It’s really laidback and quite bluesy too.  I’m not too much of a fan of this song but I’m sure some people will enjoy it since it is a cover and all that.

 

 

With 2011 being such a busy year for the band, NICO finally starts 2012 with an alright single but nothing as good as stuff in the “PASSENGER” era.  Natsu no Daisankakkei is pretty good and fitting for an A-side but Yuudachi March and Rappa to Musume were kind of bleh and forgetful.  I’m sure they’ll get better later.

 

Annabel – Above your hand May 30, 2012

Filed under: Annabel — solarblade @ 11:17 pm

Track Listing

  1. Above your hand
  2. blind hunger
  3. Above your hand (Instrumental)
  4. blind hunger (Instrumental)

1. Above your hand

I know I ever really got into “anamnesis” and all that but Above your hand once again finds itself going the ballad route and all.  Personally, I find that having just an acoustic guitar as the base of the song is just a little more than underwhelming.  The nice thing is that backup vocals are present and gives this cold, wintry feel…but when they aren’t there, the song is quite lifeless and just screams for something more.  At least at the halfway point, the song gains drums and the action sounds a LOT better than before.  SLOW start but once you get half-way it becomes quite good…odd song.

2. blind hunger

The B-side is kind of funky and kind of goes back to her “noctiluca” mini since it’s pretty different but at the same time quite unique for her.  I feel like the song has a lot of interesting moves and the chorus is pretty friggin sweet to listen to.  There’s a lot of piano here which is cool, but it’s like erratic and doesn’t have a solid melody so it just kind of plays lazily along (I guess that’s the term I could use).  Still pretty cool track!

 

 

Annabel’s third/fifth? who knows what number single this might be, Above your hand actually is a bit better than “anamnesis” just simply because both songs so com off as pretty good.  blind hunger is definitely a great B-side to listen to since it’s unique and random to listen to.  The leading track though does start off on a boring foot…but gradually gets better in time.  Where’s Annabel’s first album? 😄