Kurayami Monogatari

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ANGERME – Nakanai ze…Kyoukan Sagi/Uraha=Lover/Kimi Dake ja nai sa…friends (2018 Acoustic Ver.) April 26, 2018

Filed under: S/mileage — solarblade @ 5:22 am

nakanaize

Track Listing

  1. Nakanai ze…Kyoukan Sagi
  2. Uraha=Lover
  3. Kimi Dake ja nai sa…friends (2018 Acoustic Ver.)
  4. Nakanai ze…Kyoukan Sagi (Instrumental)
  5. Uraha=Lover (Instrumental)
  6. Kimi Dake ja nai sa…friends (2018 Acousic Ver.) (Instrumental)

1. Nakanai ze…Kyoukan Sagi

As the primary A-side for the single, we get Nakanai ze…Kyoukan Sagi first and it’s quite the familiar territory for the group as the song has the upbeat electro sound that ANGERME has been tackling for a little while with songs like “Tsugitsugi Zokuzoku” and “Ai no Tame…” but this one mixes those two aforementioned tracks to become a futuristic bop for the group.  I do like hearing the group starting to even out their line distribution more and more, but knowing Murotan, Kamiko, and a couple of the newer members getting more time to shine!  It’s a pretty decent track and my favorite from the single!

2. Uraha=Lover

As for the 2nd A-side, I wasn’t sure what to expect other than a cuter song in comparison to the other two tracks.  Right from the start, I was kind of thrown off by the vocal filter thrown on Rikako & Murotan in the intro lines.  Though it does clear up once Funakki kicks the verses off.  There’s something odd to the song and I’m not quite as interested with the disjointed guitar in the chorus (though the melody does remind me of something, but not quite sure what).  It does try to push itself as a pop/rock track…it’s coming off a smidge messy in places.

3. Kimi Dake ja nai sa…friends (2018 Acoustic Ver.)

I really wasn’t too thrilled to have found out they would make this song even more of a ballad than its original take.  I never found the original with Murotan, Kawamuu, and Kamiko to be that great and the song was just kind of floating there on that single.  Granted, this time around, I do like the arrangement here with mostly acoustic guitar at its base.  Add on that all the members get a nice line in the song and I think it did a little better than the original.  Still not quite into the full-ballad mode it has and wasn’t expecting to be shorter by doing only two choruses.

 

 

ANGERME finally brings their first release for the year!  After the announcement officially saying that Maho left the group, I think the group just kind of shrugged it off and moved forward to release this single (which funny enough stated that their previous release, “Manner Mode / Kisoku Tadashiku Utsukushiku / Kimi Dake ja nai sa…friends” wasn’t considered an official single for the group), but to be fair I won’t say this is Kawamura & Funaki’s first single in ANGERME.

So the single itself is kind of a hodge-podge in my opinion.  I have to say that Nakanai ze…Kyoukan Sagi is a pretty cool song and fits in their repertoire of other EDM-flourished songs in their discography pretty nicely and Kimi Dake ja nai sa…friends’ updated sound did the song a bit better than the original.  I think the only song that bothers me is Uraha=Lover just from the arrangement being a bit too rough on the edges IMO.  With the recent announcement of Ayacho graduating we have a decent amount of time to get ready for it (she’s planning for next year).  So what could be next for the group has got me curious!

 

Juice=Juice – SEXY SEXY/Naite Ii yo/Vivid Midnight April 5, 2018

Filed under: Juice=Juice — solarblade @ 8:51 pm

sexysexy

Track Listing

  1. SEXY SEXY
  2. Naite Ii yo
  3. Vivid Midnight
  4. SEXY SEXY (Instrumental)
  5. Naite Ii yo (Instrumental)
  6. Vivid Midnight (Instrumental)

1. SEXY SEXY

Kicking the single off, we get SEXY SEXY and boy does it seem to give a new side to Juice=Juice that we haven’t seen since “Black Butterfly” and “Hadaka no Hadaka no Hadaka no KISS”.  It’s also an interesting sight to see Yanamin actually lead the song considering that she’s the furthest of being considered sexy in Juice=Juice.  Granted, we get to hear a lot from the other members especially Sayuki, Ruru, and Tomoko who gave powerful performances here.  I definitely dug this track and really shows the level this group has (especially after adding Nanami & Ruru)

2. Naite Ii yo

Of course, I wasn’t surprised that one of the A-sides would’ve been a ballad here and that’s where Naite Ii yo and it seems pretty Kanatomo centered, but it’s nice to see Aarii and Yukanyan get some extra spotlight as well. Unfortunately, the song for me kind of goes nowhere for me and it sounds pretty standard otherwise.

3. Vivid Midnight

The last track, Vivid Midnight is an odd track for them, but it seems really intriguing (primarily due to the fact that a lot of people involved in the track’s creation has made music in K-pop) which gives this song a slight K-popish feel to it which is nice, but also kind of unusual for the single.  I do like that Karin and Ruru dominate a lot of the song, but what kind of kills it for me is this high-pitched arpeggio synth that happens in the choruses.

 

 

As the actual first physical single to include Juice=Juice’s newest members, Nanami Yanagawa & Ruru Danbara, I thought this single was OK.  I think the biggest win here was SEXY SEXY because it’s true to its form and it sounds hypnotic a lot of the times giving a nice sensual feel.  Then comes Vivid Midnight which is fun and bright but it doesn’t seem to connect with me personally (plus that arpeggio is annoying af!).  Finally there’s boring Naite Ii yo…just there and blah.  I hope an album comes from them soon though (especially with 5 unreleased songs in their repertoire).