Kurayami Monogatari

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Mami Kawada – SQUARE THE CIRCLE August 24, 2012

Filed under: Mami Kawada — solarblade @ 5:53 am

Track Listing

  1. SQUARE THE CIRCLE
  2. No buts!
  3. my buddy
  4. Don’t stop me now!
  5. Clap!Clap!Clap!
  6. Usual…
  7. See visionS
  8. live a lie
  9. Midnight trip // memories of childhood
  10. Rasen Kaidan
  11. F
  12. Going back to square one
  13. Serment

1. SQUARE THE CIRCLE

Ahhh starting the album off with the title track huh?  I really found myself interested because we’re back to the I’ve synth style that I’ve become fond of from the company.  After the lengthy intro, Mami comes in with this mysterious tone and she fits the style SO GOOD.  The chorus is also nice and Mami rises above the music and stands out moreso.  It’s a great way to begin the album, but I liked “linkage” more because that song was more dramatic IMO.

2. No buts!

Adding punch to move the album forward, we get No buts! which started out the era.  I remenber the screeching that the tune’s arrangement had which was the prominent thing about the song.  Add in the anime-esque feel of the song and it stands out from the album since it’s gritty and aggressive.

3. my buddy

Continuing on, a nice amount of new tracks come up starting with my buddy.  It sounds like “No buts!” but without the grittyness and screeches going on.  What’s left is this punchy synth track that sounds surprisingly good!  I found myself enjoying the tune altogether and Mami sounds just right.

4. Don’t stop me now!

Focusing more on the beat, Don’t stop me now! comes next and there’s a guitar riff added in.  It’s different from what I heard from Mami and I’m just kind of liking this electro song.  It’s kind of poppy when compared to the other tracks on the album but that’s cool because it gives a new side to Mami.  I ended up loving this song for some reason more than the previous track 0.o

5. Clap!Clap!Clap!

As I read other reviews, C!C!C! is actually the summer song on the album and I can totally see that here.  It’s a fun song to listen to which I can admid to and there sounds like there’s some kind of underlying sadness about the song for some reason…then Mami just makes me laugh saying ~Crap, Crap, Crap~ (as in bad Engrishness).  It’s all right, but the song is a bit weird for me.

6. Usual…

So the album has an interlude and Mami composed it as well!  For being about the length of a vocal song, Usual… is a bit forgetful since it’s kind of the same things throughout the whole track.  It’s still a bit of electro but it’s kind of like “SQUARE THE CIRCLE”…subdued perhaps is the best way to describe it.  Still, it’s forgetful since there’s no lyrics to be had here.

7. See visionS

After the interlude, we get into the second A-side released and See visionS is still probably one of my favorite songs from Mami.  I love the anime feel out of this song a lot more than “No buts!” but she gives an pretty powerful performance here.  She does strain her vocals a bit in the song, but I oddly enough didn’t mind this.  It’s a really strong song and I’m happy this made the album.

8. live a lie

Haunting synths and chanting opens up live a lie which is a bit similar in style to “SQUARE THE CIRCLE” but this song has more of a progressive feel so it’s like it lies between that and “my buddy”.  It’s a darker song from the album, but I feel like it should’ve had a bit more punch to it.  I like it but it needed more oomph IMO and it’s a bit too long (as the only song passing six minutes on the album).

9. Midnight trip // memories of childhood

At first, I wonder if Midnight trip was related to “Angel” because both had similar titles.  Midnight trip is probably the weirdest song of the album because the arrangement is about as weird and strange to listen to.  Mami is also doing some weird vocals hops which is quite meh.  The transitioning is a bit sketchy too.  Yeah, I’m not a fan of this one to be honest.

10. Rasen Kaidan

At least our next track is better!  I think this is this first time I’ve heard Mami’s vocals being a little more synthed up but the song is pretty cool.  I love the breezy atmosphere it gives off and just flows so damn smoothly.  It stands as the poppiest song on the album but this turned out a lot better than I expected.

11. F

As the new track that’s a ballad, F is an interesting song to deal with.  My main thought was that it has the flowing synth style once again which feels good with the album, but I felt like this could’ve been handled without so much of the electronic influences.  Maybe a little bit would’ve worked but not all this.  Beyond that, it was a solid ballad and Mami sounds great in the song.

12. Going back to square one

I guess we go back full circle because I feel like that’s a tongue-in-cheek title back to the beginning.  Compared to the other songs on the album this has the strongest rock influence and I was definitely enjoying the power from Mami’s vocals alongside the brazen guitars and drums.  A pretty powerful song and I’m enjoying every second of it.

13. Serment

Finally, closing out the album is the 3rd and final A-side representing the album (wait…where’s “Borderland”?).  I still do feel like Serment is the weakest of the four A-sides, but it felt right as the album’s final track to be honest.  It gave closure to the album and was a nice slow down from “Gonig back to square one” by giving us back the electroness.  I feel like the song reminds me of “PSI-missing” but with guitars alongside too for some strange reason…good ending.

Tracks Recommended

  • Don’t stop me now!
  • See visionS
  • my buddy
  • Going back to square one
  • Rasen Kaidan

Song of Avoidance

  • Midnight trip // memories of childhood

Yay, Mami’s 4th album!  I have to say as an overall package, STC is a more consistent than any of her previous albums have been and that’s good and to me, it’s better than her last album, “LINKAGE” but I felt that this album played it safe.  Most of the songs were in electro form and it did surprise me it lacked the variety, her last three has had…though what can I say she didn’t do half bad here. 

 

One Response to “Mami Kawada – SQUARE THE CIRCLE”

  1. utatte-hoshii Says:

    Haha I guess I wasn’t the only one that laughed at her English in Clap!Clap!Clap! I wonder why Borderland wasn’t included though too…


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