Kurayami Monogatari

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LM.C – My Favorite Monster January 3, 2014

Filed under: LM.C — solarblade @ 12:12 pm

myfavoritemonster

Track Listing

  1. My Favorite Monster
  2. Dolce Vitter

1. My Favorite Monster

Seems to be randomly off time to be releasing something that’s sort of Halloween-ish in December don’t you think?  My Favorite Monster is such a twist from the group’s normal as it’s kind of set in this electro/rock groove.  maya definitely sounds like he’s having fun with the song and some of the parts he has a little bit of auto-tune.  It’s a little basic and yet sounds totally unique to the duo.  I actually dig it!

2. Dolce Vitter

I wasn’t expecting the B-side to kind of be more of a lighter track in comparison to “My Faovrite Monster”, it’s actually kind of a pop/rock track and has this simple arrangement as well.  For fans, this might be a tad generic and kind of corny to listen to, but there’s something about it they did right.

 

 

After a short break, LM.C comes back with another single in My Favorite Monster and compared to their last couple of singles, the duo took a different approach to this single and went more of that electropop groove.  To me, the A-side was pretty awesome, though the B-side was kind of missing something and is slightly generic for them too. With a mini-album on its way, I can only wonder what they’ll fill that with (possibly the A-side here and “DOUBLE DRAGON”).  Overall, not bad, but could slightly alienate fans for a bit.

 

FLOWER – Shirayuki-hime

Filed under: FLOWER — solarblade @ 11:57 am

shirayukihime

Track Listing

  1. Shirayuki-hime
  2. Hatsukoi acoustic version
  3. COLOR ME UP!
  4. Shirayuki-hime (Instrumental)
  5. Hatsukoi acoustic version (Instrumental)
  6. COLOR ME UP! (Instrumental)

1. Shirayuki-hime

It seems weird that we get another Winter song (especially since two singles ago, we had “Koibito ga Santa Claus”).  However, this isn’t a cover so we’re back to regular FLOWER.  As the ballad A-side, Shirayuki-hime actually isn’t all that bad and kind of stands out amongst their A-sides in that fashion, but at the same time it seems really vanilla of a song and in the long run, doesn’t really stick onto me.  I suppose I can grow to like it, but right now, it’s not ranking as the group’s best work yet.

2. Hatsukoi acoustic version

If you were wondering, Hatsukoi was a song the group released as a digital single back in October.  Listening to that song, it was basically a plain FLOWER song with not much to really fall back on as it’s quite typical from them.  The acoustic version takes out the beats and adds a piano/strings arrangement to fit the vocal melodies of both singers.  I actually thought it progressed a lot stronger than the A-side and it sounds a LOT better as the leading ballad and better than the original version.

3. COLOR ME UP!

For a wintry single, placing COLOR ME UP! here seems rather abrasive and not really suiting the single because this track is upbeat and has more of a summertime feel which totally throws this single off.  By itself, it actually sounds pretty good and makes up for FLOWER being an R&B group by giving us a dance track.  Actually it reminds me of “what I want”.  It’s a fun song though and really gets me thinking that the group would be a great dance group (if they were given something more challenging).

 

 

As the first single without their leader, Erina, Shirayuki-hime is a little better of a single than “Taiyou to Himawari” since two of the three songs were quite strong.  I love the acoustic version of Hatsukoi as it definitely sounded stronger.  COLOR ME UP! is also a good song as it shows off more of FLOWER’s dance sound and they should focus more on this.  The main track though was kind of boring and definitely overshadowed by Hatsukoi.  With their first album FINALLY announced, I can’t wait to review it!

 

Chihiro Onitsuka – Itazura Pierrot

Filed under: Chihiro Onitsuka — solarblade @ 11:29 am

itazurapierrot

Track Listing

  1. Itazura Pierrot
  2. Who Will Save Your Soul
  3. Itazura Pierrot (Backing Track)

1. Itazura Pierrot

It’s been a while since we’ve heard Chihiro and she pulls out a random indies single during 2013 and Itazura Pierrot at first kind of had a circus-y feel to it, but once the track begins, it sounds more like a Country song which might toss some people to the side while they turn their heads.  It’s weird her vocals have been up and down since her surgery and for Itazura Pierrot it’s kind on the lower end of the spectrum.  The song does kind of suit her more huskier voice, but she has moments where her voice breaks in lines and it doesn’t seem like it’s a technical idea.  So it’s a bit random of a song and since it’s indies, I kind of was disappointed in the song.

2. Who Will Save You Soul

The B-side for the single is a cover of the big Jewel song that we all knew and love in the 90s.  Of course we just came from Onitsuka’s cover album, “FAMOUS MICROPHONE” and to hear another cover made me kind of worried.  Kind of more acoustic, I was kind of here nor there because Chihiro’s English is REALLY accented and her voice kind of just doesn’t work and Chihiro doesn’t even try to hit the notes Jewel could so the song sounds really different.  Yeah, not impressed.

 

 

I just couldn’t with this single, something about this single just screamed pushed and kind of fail here.  Itazura Pierrot is the better song, but compared to songs that were from “Ken to Kaede” this really paled on a lot of levels.  Her Jewel cover…yeah let’s just act like it never happened.  Yeah, not a great single.

 

Up Up Girls – Nijiiro Mosaic/ENJOY!! ENJO(Y)!! January 2, 2014

Filed under: Up Up Girls — solarblade @ 5:52 am

nijiiromosaic

Track Listing

  1. Nijiiro Mosaic
  2. ENJOY!! ENJO(Y)!!
  3. Nijiiro Mosaic (Instrumental)
  4. ENJOY!! ENJO(Y)!! (Instrumental)

1. Nijiiro Mosaic

I find it nice they’re relasing a winter single right before Christmas and New Years.  Nijiiro Mosaic is definitely a quick song for the group and strikes me as a pretty cool EDM song (almost drum & bass with slight elements of dubstep).  There’s something about it that also reminds me of DDR music, but in a way it works for UUG.  I quite like this and it shook up the typical idol winter formula!

2. ENJOY!! ENJO(Y)!!

The other A-side from the single was a little more difficult to handle.  It’s pretty upbeat like the primary A-side, but this song is heavily overloaded with auto-tune which is actually something that bothered me a bit.  I think Morisaki doesn’t suit the style much because IMO she does have the vocals that I recognize more than any other member of the group.

 

 

Wow, they actually had to release ANOTHER single before 2013 ended.  Their winter single is nice overall, I definitely enjoyed Nijiiro Mosaic a lot more than ENJOY!! ENJO(Y) simply because the former wasn’t heavily drowning in auto-tune like the latter.  Seeing as they finally announced their sophomore album, I’m pretty sure it’ll be overflowing with single tracks, hopefully they’ll have some surprises in store.