Hajimari no Toki English ver.
Chiisana Ashiato (inst)
Opening the single, beautiful starts of with some gospel-like ad-libs which sounded really pretty with only piano backing it up. Once ayaka starts to sing the song continues on this rather basic path for majority of the song. Percussion and strings filter in later, but the song itself does sound a bit vanilla for ayaka. Especially coming after all the songs she put out in “The beginning”. It’s not a total wreck, but it’s something I won’t remember in the long run.
2. Chiisana Ashiato
The other A-side though kind of makes up for how white “beautiful” is. This track has a much more playful vibe going and ayaka while sounds better in the previous track, gives an exceptional performance here as well. I don’t know why, but I get giddy listening to this song! I just loved the arrangement to this song a lot more than I thought I would…why wasn’t this promoted more? lol
3. Hajimari no Toki English ver.
So the track that promoted “The beginning” gets an English version and I was kind of excited to hear how it’d turn out. Yeah the accent is really evident, but damn ayaka still sounds great and hearing the lyrics now makes this song a lot more emotional-tying for me. It really made a difference and this song is just simple and great to listen to (makes me want “beautiful” to have an English version now…).
It’s shocking to know that her last single was back in 2009, but after her return, she’s making great strides in music. I will say it’ll take time for beautiful to grow on me because it’s such a plain song in her discography, plus Chiisana Ashiato just overthrows it completely with being a lot more playful and quirky of a song. The English take on Hajimari no Toki was a great extra track too…so she can get better from this for sure ^_^