Kurayami Monogatari

Would love a comment every so often <<

Shoko Nakagawa – 9lives May 16, 2014

Filed under: Shoko Nakagawa — solarblade @ 6:00 am

9lives

Track Listing

  1. Miracle a Go! Go!
  2. 9lives
  3. Sakasama Sekai
  4. Zoku Konton
  5. Shiroi Chou no Yume
  6. Ii yo ne
  7. Seven Seas Romance
  8. millefeuille nights
  9. Dare ni mo Ienai Kiss no Ato
  10. chocolate chaud
  11. Nuigulumar Z
  12. Once Upon a Time -Kibou no Uta-
  13. Ai Ippai, Sei Ippai
  14. Last Wish -Onaji Iro no Christmas-

1. Miracle a Go! Go!

Usually, Shokotan has good openings and Miracle a Go! Go! might not be as one would’ve liked but she starts with something upbeat and fun to listen to.  I can say that this song really sounds like an anime intro with this kind of cutesy sound and Shoko’s voice is up there in pitch too.  For a song to kick things off, it’s average to me.

2. 9lives

Already on the title track?  Being the promotional track, 9lives was a surprise to me as we go from something cute and pop/rock to something heavier and more cooler from Shokotan.  I love her using a more deeper tone with her voice because she just summons a stronger force in her voice and she sounds perfect!  This definitely ranks up there with the best songs she’s done since her debut!

3. Sakasama Sekai

Then we get into the first half of her second single released for the era with Sakasama Sekai and I wasn’t too enthusiastic about it when it was released.  I’m sensing that this album is going for this anime-esque pop/rock feel.  On this album, the track still has problems fitting in and trying not to sound bland.  I still think parts with the synths stood out more than the rest of the track…that’s not good is it?

4. Zoku Konton

As she took a little of a hiatus after her best album, Zoku Konton was a pretty ballsy way to return by giving us a more darker side to her music.  While it still has its anime sound, Shokotan really gave her all here and while the chorus sounds lacking, it’s a cool track and Shoko gave a great vocal performance and the harpischord/strings sections are nice and gothic!  Cool cool.

5. Shiroi Chou no Yume

We finally get a pretty lengthy amount of new songs starting with Shiroi Chou no Yume.  As the first ballad from the album, Shoko tried to do a more dramatic tune here and in some places, I really liked it, but the song sounds almost too familiar to my ears…like the melodies sound done before.  It’s not bad though so that should be good right.

6. Ii yo ne

Kind of a sudden twist moving from something like “Shiroi Chou no Yume” to Ii yo ne which has a cutesy tone.  At first it was quirky and silly but the chorus was loud and a bit in your face😄.  Honestly, the song annoyed me more than anything else really…Just seemed like something that should’ve been a B-side.

7. Seven Seas Romance

Getting out of that sugar fest, Seven Seas Romance brings us back to something like “Sakasama Sekai” with a definite anime intro groove to it.  At least I enjoyed this one a lot more since the tune has a nice progressive sound and Shoko’s voice isn’t trying to be overly girly.  The tune is good, but doesn’t quite reach to the same levels as “9lives”.

8. millefeuille nights

Our next track was released as a “TV” version so here we get the full version!  I was surprised with the quick-paced sound that really sounds anime-heavy (for good reason).  I think of the cutesy stuff, I found myself bouncing around with this track and Shoko gave the tune life (even though the kind of denpa arrangement is already working).  Fun song for the album!

9. Dare ni mo Ienai Kiss no Ato

Hmmm, a song that mixes the previous track with the album’s overall rock sound?  Yep, that’s the case for Dare ni mo Ienai Kiss no Ato and it actually works alongside Shoko’s rock vocals and the energy is once again much appreciated!  It did feel rather short, but it’s still a pretty great song nonetheless!

10. chocolate chaud

I didn’t think our next new track would begin with such a dark and spooky intro…I have to give props to Shoko for that one  As the song kicks in, it follows the spooky feel with a gritty rock sound.  I liked the sound of the tune and the background vocalists added a nice touch to the track.  It might not have the power like other tracks, but it definitely ranks up there!

11. Nuigulumar Z

Released as a collaborated single, Nuigulumar Z was a surprise to see on the album (especially over some other digital singles).  Of course Shokotan is singing the lyrics for the most part while Tokusatsu provide the music and background chants.  It’s an interesting inclusion and one of the better songs on the album surprisingly!

12. Once Upon a Time -Kibou no Uta-

Taking a chill pill after “Nuigulumar Z”, Once Upon a Time was also an A-side from the single preceding the album and I wasn’t interested with it at first release.  At first, the song sounded mysterious with that strings melody and deep vocals from Shoko which I loved, but then it opens to such a forgettable chorus…at least the song kind of tries to make amends with some different directions (like the 2nd verse being a bit brighter and nice).  Actually this song really grew on me and is now prolly my favorite A-side she’s released since returning.  Even though the emotions are quite bipolar for me😄.

13. Ai Ippai, Sei Ippai

As what most people thought was going to end the album (Shokotan hid the last track til the last minute).  Ai Ippai, Sei Ippai is a mid-tempo track from her and as such it does sound like a final tune since it has a sullen feel to it, but Shoko sounds solid here as well.  Even though it isn’t one of the bangers, I can say this song is one to listen to.

14. Last Wish -Onaji Iro no Christmas-

The actual final track is a rather special track for Shoko.  If you didn’t know, this is a cover of her late father, Katsuhiko Nakagawa’s 1986 single of the same name.  For covering such an important song to her, Last Wish was of course updated to fit Shoko’s voice and she sounds really pretty here making the song a bit more Wintry than the original.  She definitely honored her father in a really nice way and a great song chosen.

Tracks Recommended

  • 9lives
  • millefeuille nights
  • Once Upon a Time -Kibou no Uta-
  • Last Wish -Onaji Iro no Christmas-
  • Dare ni mo Ienai Kiss no Ato

Song of Avoidance

  • Ii yo ne

It felt like forever since Shokotan released a studio album that wasn’t full of covers.  As her 4th album, it started off not-so-good with the first half (cept for 9lives and Zoku Konton) but then it started accelerating in the later half and really it got pretty good.  Better than “Cosmic ♬ Inflation”?, I’d say by a bit yes!  Though the first half of it might take some time to stick.

 

2 Responses to “Shoko Nakagawa – 9lives”

  1. Matt91_ Says:

    I guess Shoko-tan is one step closed to becoming a real cat by now? There’s no way I can stay serious when I see photos of her with a cat nowadays.


Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out / Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out / Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out / Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out / Change )

Connecting to %s