Kurayami Monogatari

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i☆Ris – §Rainbow February 18, 2014

Filed under: i☆Ris — solarblade @ 11:31 pm

rainbow

Track Listing

  1. §Rainbow
  2. Susume Adventure
  3. Motteke! Sailor Fuku (Type C only)
  4. §Rainbow (Instrumental)
  5. Susume Adventure (Instrumental)
  6. Motteke! Sailor Fuku (Instrumental)

1. §Rainbow

I was kind of hoping the group would continue to sound like they did from “Ichizu” but with §Rainbow we’re back to more of the cutesy sound and sadly the girls didn’t seem quite as together as well.  Like the more mature voices mixing with the more idol-cute voices didn’t gel very well.  Didn’t help the song sounded generic overall.  I was quite disappointed with this song.

2. Susume Adventure

The B-side begins with some clapping and some layering of the group’s voices.  It definitely sounds like a song made for lives because in the studio, the ~YEAH~ sound really unlively lol.  There’s something about the song that’s also lacking in some power, but I know this track would be awesome to hear live, it’s just weak in studio form.

3. Motteke! Sailor Fuku

The cover they brought this time is a song that’s a bit more recent, a 2007 anime theme that got pretty big back in the day.  For a cover, they didn’t do so bad, but it’s definitely super cutesy here, but it’s pretty WTF so it kind of works for them.  I actually thought it was pretty catchy and see why this song was so popular.

 

 

3rd single in and §Rainbow brought the group back down again.  The main track just was plain and really didn’t do anything memorable for the group.  Susume Adventure is a song that’s more meant for lives more than anything else an its studio version felt empty to me.  Motteke! Sailor Fuku though was oddly the best the single had to offer, though it’s not much…I hope they pick it up in the next single!

 

i☆Ris – Ichizu

Filed under: i☆Ris — solarblade @ 11:08 pm

ichizu

Track Listing

  1. Ichizu
  2. i☆Doloid
  3. Get Over (Type C only)
  4. Ichizu -Instrumental-
  5. i☆Doloid -Instrumental-
  6. Get Over -Instrumental-

1. Ichizu

For the group’s 2nd A-side, I was kind of surprised the tone of the group switched from generic idol song to Ichizu which sounds like something from the early 2000’s avex capsule.  It’s a mid-tempo song and I think there’s just one lead here, but the song is a total departure after “Color” and I quite enjoyed the change!

2. i☆Doloid

Is this supposed to be a play on VOCALOID?  Makes sense because this song is heavy on synths and all that, but the vocals aren’t tampered with.  Actually the song sounds VERY idol-like and if it wasn’t for the cutesy synths, it would’ve been amazingly generic.  Whoever got the solo lines though sounded nice but overall this song was kind of meh.

3. Get Over

i☆Ris started a thing that we would see from this single out by making Type C editions come with a cover song.  The first is a surprise as it’s a single I covered long ago.  It’s dream’s 2001 single, Get Over.  I instantly remembered the song right from the intro, though it surprises me because the voices in the song sound so much better and deeper than in the previous track.  The cover is a bit more up to date, though it seems like all the ladies got lines (but I can’t be sure because it sounds like only two of the members sung).

 

 

After a cover album, i☆Ris came back with Ichizu and it’s a switch from their previous single, “Color” with the sound of the songs almost taking up a slight early avex sound.  Get Over also fits in the category and honestly, it was a pretty solid cover and I hope they could sing like this more often.  Howerver, the only song that didn’t fit was i☆Doloid because it was so sugary and cutesy and was a total antithesis for the single lol.

 

yanaginagi – Mitsuba no Musubime

Filed under: yanaginagi — solarblade @ 10:23 pm

mitsubanomusubime

Track Listing

  1. Mitsuba no Musubime
  2. Intention Propellant
  3. unjour
  4. Mitsuba no Musubime (instrumental)
  5. Intention Propellant (instrumental)
  6. unjour (instrumental)

1. Mitsuba no Musubime

I turned the song on and we’re greeted with piano and strings and some synths in the back…though it gets cut off when nagi begins to sing.  nagi’s voice is light and pleasant and the tune ebbs and flows with the instrumentation all around.  The chorus is pretty pleasant and sounds just right.  Though coming from “Aqua Terrarium”, the song does slightly fall short and it does kind of come off as a bit *we’ve heard this kind of song before*.  Still you can’t deny nagi’s lovely voice here!

2. Intention Propellant

Moving to the B-side, Intention Propellant starts with an unusual piano melody that kind of bounces all over the measures lol.  nagi’s voice are a bit lighter than in the A-side but she adds a lot of color to the song and she fills in the spaces that the piano leave out…it’s a bit of experimenting done right and I quite liked how it turned out overall.

3. unjour

Synths open up the 2nd B-side from the single and immediately kind of caught my attention over the previous tracks.  nagi’s voice is also light and airy here and there’s a lot more experimenting found here in comparison to “Intention Propellant”.  It’s so chill and relaxing to listen to, but at the same quite otherworldly from nagi hahah…I enjoyed it!

 

 

nagi’s 2nd single of the era might not surpass her last single, “Aqua Terrarium” but it’s definitely a good single from her.  Mitsuba no Musubime is a nice tune, but I’m not responding much towards it like I was with her last one.  However, Intention Propellant and unjour are both stepping outside of the box and I really liked how both turned out (especially unjour) that’s a pretty cool tune!  Wonder what her next single will bring!

 

Kanon Wakeshima – signal

Filed under: Kanon Wakeshima — solarblade @ 8:00 pm

signal

Track Listing

  1. signal
  2. Mujuuryoku
  3. signal -instrumental-
  4. Mujuuryoku -instrumental-

1. signal

Opening up with piano, strings and Kanon playing her cello, signal is definitely a lighter affair when compared to most of her works.  As a ballad, signal doesn’t really have anything special about it as the arrangement is so simple at least before the chorus because the track gets loud and starts to include drums and guitars before going back to it’s light and easy listening tone.  It’s an odd song, but I love Kanon’s vocals for some reason, especially after the second chorus as she starts to sing in a deeper tone and I’m rather surprised!  She’s got a voice on her!  Odd A-side, but definitely something that could really catch my attention in the long run.

2. Mujuuryoku

I was wondering what we’d get with the B-side, but it seems a little more of the same, but just faster and Kanon’s voice doesn’t seem as surprisingly good unlike in “signal”.  I can tell the song wants to be a little more upbeat for her, but I don’t think this did her very well especially some of those whines she was pulling off…it was kind of piercing x.x.

 

 

Kanon finally came back to music with the second single of the era.  signal arrangement-wise is a little strange but Kanon sung powerfully which is a nice surprise and I hope she focuses on that sound for the future.  Mujuuryoku was vocally a mess and she definitely sounded poor in a LOT of the high notes.  Yeah…I’m still missing the Kanon of the past, but I suppose this is OK lol.

 

TOKYO GIRLS’ STYLE – Partition Love

Filed under: TOKYO GIRLS' STYLE — solarblade @ 7:45 pm

partitionlove

Track Listing

  1. Partition Love
  2. Tsuki no Kimagure
  3. Yakusoku -Acoustic Ver.- (Type A only)
  4. Partition Love -Royal Mirrorball Remix- (Type C only)
  5. Partition Love (Instrumental)
  6. Tsuki no Kimagure (Instrumental)

1. Partition Love

For all the fans that missed TG’S’ more funky songs, the group returned to their producer after they stepped out for the last two singles.  Partition Love actually started as a digital single that was released back in September of 2013 so this has been known for quite a while and kind of is a lazy move to make it an A-side so long after (reminds me…where’s “LIFE SIZE”?).  Anyways, the song is more of the mature sound we’ve gotten a lot from the group so to many, it might not stand out, but I actually enjoyed this as it sounds sexy almost and the whispering is definitely nice to hear!  Not bad overall!

2. Tsuki no Kimagure

At least we get an original song for a B-side.  Tsuki no Kimagure is an odd song to listen to because it has kind of a bossa nova sound to it, but it doesn’t help with have that organ that sounds like something used from a baseball game here.  It’s a bit strange of a song and I’m kind of unsure if I like it or not…seems more like a no though as they kind of got a messy song to deal with.

3. Yakusoku -Acoustic Ver-

On Type A, we get an acoustic version of the title track from their 3rd album!  Yakusoku was a nice track back then and hearing now with less instrumentation doesn’t change too much for me to make an opinion different.  It’s nice though and the girls sound great (I think they resung it?).  Either way not bad of a toned down version lol.

4. Partition Love -Royal Mirrorball Remix-

As a 7 minute remix RM returns once again with their own touch of Partition Love and it starts with some beats and a strings melody which is cool oddly enough.  I love how the song changed the song from a sexy song to a more poppy feel that kind of reminds me of “Kodou no Himitsu” but with more dramatic strings and piano.  It’s a long remix, but it’s actually quite good!

 

 

After a break from their producer with the last two singles, TOKYO GIRLS’ STYLE comes back to their funky style in full form with Partition Love.  Despite that it’s an older song, the track is really good and gives a more sultry vibe and its remix was also quite good, albeit a tad long.  The acoustic version of Yakusoku was also nice in the long run.  However, the single kind of falted with the B-side, Tsuki no Kimagure.  I don’t know why but it just sounds bad and awkward to listen to…couldn’t we have gotten “LIFE SIZE” instead?

 

yanaginagi – Aqua Terrarium

Filed under: yanaginagi — solarblade @ 7:09 pm

aquaterrarium

Track Listing

  1. Aqua Terrarium
  2. mnemonic
  3. You can count on me
  4. Aqua Terrarium (instrumental)
  5. mnemonic (instrumental)
  6. You can count on me (instrumental)

1. Aqua Terrarium

With such a title, I was definitely curious to what nagi was thinking of.  OMG, this song definitely showcases such a feeling especially with that intro.  Then seeing that Chiaki Ishikawa helped out here made sense because it kind of does sound like a song that would also fit her voice.  I liked the relaxed sound of the track and it really does sound like a song made for underwater as it’s just so pleasant to the ears!  That bass though sounds like it was ripped from Cirque du Soleil, but it really gives this song a lot of color as well…damn…what a good follow-up after “Euaru”.

2. mnemonic

I kind of was surprised that mnemonic was actually a couple seconds longer that “Aqua Terrarium”.  I actually kind of got the underwater theme in this song too which is pretty amazing because this has a little more action from the synths.  nagi’s vocals actually to me sound a lot more livelier and pretty to listen to here.  I’m not sure which of the two songs are the best 0.o

3. You can count on me

Damn, all the songs on this single are 5 minutes long basically.  It’s funny because we come out of two mid-tempo songs that just scream underwater motif…and then You can count on me comes rushing in with a fast-paced arrangement with a lot of drums and strings…reminds me of another anison theme lol but this is kind of odd finding it on the single as it doesn’t fit…I will say that its brightness would’ve been great on her album, but here seems so…I’m not sure the right word.  By itself, nagi gave an exciting performance and it shows as she doing a great job singing here.  Fun song and I can grow to love it, but this is a wake-up call after the previous tracks!

 

 

After her first album, I was wondering what would happen with nagi, but she quickly came out of it with Aqua Terrarium and good lord is it good!  I loved that Ishikawa worked on the A-side because it really sounds like one of her songs…it was just a heavenly track, then mnemonic comes in and IMO topples that by being more along the motif of water and nagi just knocked it out.  Though the sore thumb of the single is hands down You can count on me because it’s exciting, vibrant and overall not a mid-tempo track LOL.  I have to once again say that this is a *RECOMMENDED*…damn nagi!

 

Daichi Miura – GO FOR IT

Filed under: Daichi Miura — solarblade @ 6:46 pm

goforitdaichi

Track Listing

  1. GO FOR IT
  2. Twinkle Shiny Star
  3. Half of You

1. GO FOR IT

I was pleasantly surprised that Daichi’s single begins with a funky dance tune!  GO FOR IT stands out amongst the dance tracks with more attitude and a more brass-led arrangement so it has a nice sassy punch to it.  Daichi sounds really good in the song as he’s doing a little more pushing on his vocals, but it’s an exciting song overall and definitely ended the era with a bang!

2. Twinkle Shiny Star

As such a title, I was expecting so corny ballad, but we ended with another dance track!  Actually this is more of the style we’ve been hearing Daichi take up in recent times.  I love the beat of the tune and it’s such a club-friendly song and Daichi sounds so good as well.  I have to say I kind of preferred this song to “GO FOR IT” as this is more where Daichi accels at and he definitely did it right!

3. Half of You

I guess that this was the ballad of the single huh?  Well nope, the song might not be a bump n’ grind track like “Twinkle Shiny Star”, but Half of You kind of has this deeper dance style going for it, but it takes up some dubstep here which is another thing Daichi has been oddly into it since “Black Hole”.  It’s not bad, but it’s gonna take some time to get used to lol.

 

 

Ending off his 4th era, GO FOR IT wasn’t as awesome as “Right Now/Voice” but it definitely didn’t disappoint me at all.  GO FOR IT brings us much sass with its brass-led arrangement and Daichi’s effort.  Twinkle Shiny Star (as cheesy the title is) is a great dance track and shocked it’s not on the album.  Half of You was trying something, but it did slightly miss the mark for me.  Man, I hope “The Entertainer” is gonna be awesome!