Kurayami Monogatari

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Up Up Girls – Third Album (Kakko Kari) April 25, 2015

Filed under: Up Up Girls — solarblade @ 8:48 pm

thirdalbum

Track Listing

  1. Beautiful Dreamer
  2. Kirakira Mirai
  3. Up&Up!
  4. ENJOY!! ENJO(Y)!!
  5. Nijiiro Mosaic
  6. Zenryoku! Pump Up!!
  7. Itadaki wo Mesazu!
  8. (Kakko Kari) wa Kaesuze☆be your soul
  9. Bijo no Yajuu
  10. Jumper!
  11. Runway
  12. Kono Melody wo Kimi to
  13. Party! Party!
  14. Zenryoku! Pump Up!! -ULTRA Mix-
  15. Starry Night (y0c1e Remix)

1. Beautiful Dreamer

As part of the 4th and final A-side released for the album, we kicks things off with Beautiful Dreamer.  It’s an interesting choice to say the least.  I do love that we get a lot of Manami Arai here because I felt she was one of the back members.  Alongside the other leads: Sengoku, Furukawa, and Saho, the song is a nice start as it isn’t hardcore but not too slow (plus it’s at the peak where the group has adopted a more EDM-sound than their pop/rock roots.  I still think the rap section is a little out of place, but the song itself is not all that bad.

2. Kirakira Mirai

As the first of four new tracks on the album, Kirakira Mirai surprisingly brings back the group to their rock roots which is surprising with the lack of them in the era.  Though, this song is pretty loud and furious with its arrangement.  While the PV only had three of the members present, the song is all 7 of them.  Overall, this is a very speedy track and even has some odd moments (makes me think of BABYMETAL but not overly dramatic).

3. Up&Up!

The next track is also a new one for this album and I definitely figured this one was going to be more towards the group’s overall sound.  I will say the intro fizzling out to that bouncy piano melody was slightly misleading there😄.  The chorus adds back the heavy beat, but at that point the song seems a little dragging for me.  Not too big of a fan of this one.

4. ENJOY!! ENJO(Y)!!

The next two tracks are from the first single of the era (ironically enough the only single that came out before their sophomore album was released).  I did like the introduction of the song with the fade-in, but re-listening to the song after how long it’s been out, it really hasn’t grown on me because of the reliance on auto-tune here (plus the speak-singing wasn’t cutting it for me).  Definitely my least favorite of the A-sides.

5. Nijiiro Mosaic

As least there was the other A-side to impress me from the single.  As both tracks were winter-themed tunes, Nijiiro Mosaic took to drum n’ bass for this song and I thought it was rather refreshing to listen to (especially with how much EDM they would be releasing).  I do like it a lot more than “ENJOY!! ENJO(Y)!!” but it does have its share of issues.  I couldn’t care less about the ~kimi ni, kimi ni, kimi ni~ repetition.  Still not bad.

6. Zenryoku! Pump Up!!

Though the song that really caught my attention in this era, was this A-side from their 3rd single of the era.  From the shimasen intro to the club-banging arrangement, Zenryoku! Pump Up!! was a fun track to listen to that’s for sure.  It really gets you energized and all of the members get a line to their own which is quite awesome!  Definitely the best of the album!

7. Itadaki wo Mesazu!

Another song that made me happy to see appear, Itadaki wo Mesazu! comes next and is somewhat like “Beautiful Dreamer” but has a bit more oomph to it.  Add in that there’s quite a bit of Ayano (who’s another member that doesn’t get to shine in songs as much as the main members.  I kind of feel like this is a Zedd arranged song because of the way it flows and the descending synth notes.  It’s still a pretty cool song though!

8. (Kakko Kari) wa Kaesuze☆be your soul

Of course they have to have that one really in-your-face kind of track and (Kakko Kari) wa Kaesuze☆be your soul fits the bill similarly to “UPPER ROCK” and “SAMURAI GIRLS” before this.  It’s pretty loud and quick with a whole lot of punch to it.  Though I can’t help but feel they kind of overdid it here with the arrangement.  It’s alright overall, but a bit messy.

9. Bijo no Yajuu

~I am a beassst~ is all can think of when this song comes up because it’s chanted a lot during the tune.  The next new track, Bijo no Yajuu is definitely a song best performed live because of the punch and the chanting plus the power of most of the arrangement.  Not really a fan of the auto-tune on the group here (except the really low parts).  Though in the later half, I feel like the song turns into a club-thumper and to the end is just badass…I can see myself really getting into this one.

10. Jumper!

Going back a bit to Jumper!, this song is also lyrically presented fast which is pretty hard to keep up, but the tune jumps in with the bouncy beat and some cut n’ pastin vocals which is eh.  To be honest, compared to the other A-sides, this one felt like it was just padding to the album…there’s nothing totally special about this one that couldn’t be found on any of their previous works.

11. Runway

The last of the new songs, Runway makes me think of songs like “Rainbow” & “Cyalume” with the floaty arrangement and smooth synth arrangement.  That being said, it gives me a kind-of 80’s vibe to it as well (actually it reminds me of Aira Mitsuki’s stuff).  I like the track being something that doesn’t try too hard to get things through.  Also, it’s not a Sengoku solo despite her being the only one in the PV.  Overall nice!

12. Kono Melody wo Kimi to

That being said, putting our next track next to “Runway” didn’t change too much beyond adding a stronger beat and some piano to the arrangement.  Though this song also reminds me of “Beautiful Dreamer” as well with it’s upbeat and happy nature.  Funny enough this song came out before the two so there’s that.  Overall, Kono Melody wo Kimi to is OK, grown less one me as time went by…but I can tolerate it.

13. Party! Party!

Maybe it’s me, but at this point of the album, I was starting to get bored and by the time Party! Party! came up I was kind of falling behind.  This song does include some actual guitar and bass alongside the happy-go-lucky vocals.  It’s OK and it does try to deviate from the excess of EDM on the album.

14. Zenryoku! Pump Up!! -ULTRA Mix-

I still don’t even know why the group had to add this song to the tracklist because like I’ve said on the single review, it really just dulls the song more than it needs.  I mean the energy is a bit higher, but the song’s twists and turns really throw me off and there’s not a lot of song to be had either.  It’s alright, but pales in comparison to the original.

15. Starry Night (y0c1e Remix)

The album ends off with a new remix of Starry Night (a song from their “Second Album” era).  I do love how it begins like a simple club remix and grows into a rather interesting remix.  It lets off the beats to let the chorus begin (which is really high XD) then enters back into its club beats which is really cool funny enough.  Makes 2 for 2 because I loved their last remix of “Widol Seven” so this was just as good!

Tracks Recommended

  • Zenryoku! Pump Up!!
  • Starry Night (y0c1e Remix)
  • Itadaki wo Mesazu!
  • Bijo no Yajuu

Song of Avoidance

  • ENJOY!! ENJO(Y)!!

I was pretty surprised that the group slightly slowed down their releases from 8 singles a year to 4 this time around.  Also, this 3rd album actually looks like a studio album and less a best-of (still a bit short on new songs, but it’s baby steps).  Third Album though didn’t have too many standout songs that their previous two did which is slightly unfortunate, but their sound is quite strong.  Let’s just go back to exciting songs for the next release!

 

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