Kurayami Monogatari

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Maika – loser/Tsubuyaku… July 23, 2014

Filed under: Maika — solarblade @ 3:34 am

loser

Track Listing

  1. loser
  2. Tsubuyaku…

1. loser

Wow, it’s been a while since I’ve heard Maika last.  She comes back with loser the first A-side and it seems her sound hasn’t changed if anything grew because her songs sound more full (with bass and drums).  It also seemed that this time off have let Maika’s vocals grow even more as she sounds strong and powerful.  This song is quite impressive and loving Maika’s emotions running through track.  Impressive!

2. Tsubuyaku…

So the other A-side, Tsubuyaku… is a bit more interesting for Maika as it’s more chill and has a lot more from the piano and brass, so it adds a bit of fun to the track.  I enjoyed everything about this song and it’s lighthearted and just a nice opposite to “loser”!

 

 

It’s been like 2 years since we’ve seen Maika release anything so it’s fortunate that she’s still kicking and releasing.  This single really has potential for her and she’s making great strides, even though the whole singer/guitarista style is kind of dead now.  I think this is a *RECOMMENDED* single as both A-sides just show a lot of what she’s about but better than before!  Give her a try!

 

Maika – Yada yo… May 13, 2012

Filed under: Maika — solarblade @ 9:28 pm

Track Listing

  1. Yada yo…
  2. Molly feat. LGYankees
  3. Chikai

1. Yada yo…

It seems to have been quite a while since we’ve heard Maika last and she returned after a break with Yada yo… which is a little different than what I’ve heard before.  It’s a ballad but it’s slightly poppy as well which makes it an easier listen.  Maika’s vocals seem to have improved from “Kokoro” but she still sounds out of breath all over the song and the squeaks sound rather abrasive.  It’s not all that bad but at least she’s showing improvement with her sound!

2. Molly feat. LGYankees

I know I have heard of LGYankees before but I do not know where for the life of me lol.  They don’t seem to do much in the song since I’m not exactly sure where I’m looking for them…well…that is until they start rapping which is an interesting twist (and probably Maika did this because of her collaboration from “Kyouka Suigetsu”.  The song is still quite light and kind of bores me in places…

3. Chikai

I think of the songs of the single, Chikai is a lot like her previous releases.  I mean it’s mostly acoustic guitar which is her strong suit and her older vocals seem to have returned here which might be a positive or negative thing to be honest.  Take it as you wish, but if you didn’t like her past sound in her vocals (croaky, nasally, and the like) this isn’t your song.

 

 

Wow it has been quite a while since Maika released something…last was “Kokoro” of last year.  Yada yo… shows that Maika has taken some vocal lessons and seem to be getting slightly better tone quality than stuff in her debut album.  She did kind of bored me with this release but that’s OK since we get to hear her new style of singing (sans Chikai).  Hopefully it won’t take too long to release another single.

 

Maika – Kokoro October 21, 2010

Filed under: Maika — solarblade @ 11:06 pm

Track Listing

  1. Kokoro
  2. Squall

1. Kokoro

I didn’t expect Maika would make Kokoro a ballad after such an interesting fun song like “Oshiete yo ~miseducation~”.  I liked that the song is softly did and has a good addition with the strings to mix in with her guitar-playing.  Still the thing that might turn people off is Maika’s vocals since they’re rather unique for a guitarist (think YUI but deeper).  It’s definitely something I didn’t expect, but I liked it still.

2. Squall

The B-side of the single brings back up the Maika we’ve known since she began her major label career.  Squall actually is pretty catchy overall with being upbeat and including bongos in the song ^_^.  Her vocals are still rather strange, but still it’s a catchy song overall.

After “Possible” I wasn’t sure where Maika was going to go musically and I’m sure people will be surprised with Kokoro being lighter and more of a ballad than her previous efforts.  I think this sing is pretty good, but still hindered by them vocals, but I’ll get used to them in time.

 

Maika – Possible July 9, 2010

Filed under: Maika — solarblade @ 2:11 am

Track Listing

  1. Oshiete yo ~miseducation~
  2. Kaerimichi
  3. never cry
  4. Never Never Never give up
  5. Michi
  6. minor girl
  7. darlin’

1. Oshiete yo ~miseducation~

I still admit, it’s only been a week since its single release, but I’m still loving Oshiete yo’s more humorous feel and lightheartedness when compared to the other two A-sides.  I like the addition of brass and the more free sounding arrangement than “never cry”.  Maika’s vocals are still a little nasally, but it’s a voice that is rare to hear in the J-pop world so…

2. Kaerimichi

As one of four new songs on this “album”, Kaerimichi reminds me of “better day” but switched over to a more acoustic sound and the guitars are present too.  Her voice sounds more appropriate here to be honest and the whole Western sound she’s putting into this song sounds quite nice. 

3. never cry

Then we get into a similar setting with Maika’s major label debut and never cry was pretty good when I first heard it because it was new to me and my first time hearing Maika’s signature vocals and while it’s still pretty throaty and hoarse, I like the power she had in the chorus and while it does follow a similar sounding tune, it’s quite nice to listen to.

4. Never Never Never give up

I’m surprised that Maika actually put her lone indies A-side onto the album/mini-album w/e it is.  The song has a pretty solid statement to say and it’s funny that I thought this song was pretty catchy even though Maika sounds like a Southern girl which is probably a bigger lulz than normal.  Who knew that song was gonna end up sounding good, for an indies song?  Maika’s vocals sound aggressively strong, especially near the end.

5. Michi

Yep, Michi just reminds me of “Kaerimichi” in a whole lot of ways.  Maybe it’s a little more depressing to listen to, but I do like how she lightens up on the chorus, but then at that point I call it a clone song and I readily pass it up.  I know her songs have had strings present, but the ones here sounds really nice in the chorus though.  I think “better day” as a ballad is better than this one.

6. minor girl

Hearing Maika actually singing acappella is a little strange to listen to, but when she finishes her opening lines, it becomes another acoustic-like track, but a bit more upbeat and interesting.  I did like the inclusion of background vocalists during the song, but to me it still sounds rather plain to me. 

7. darlin’

As the longest song on this release, darlin’ is the closest thing to a ballad we have from Maika.  I like the emotional sound here and there’s not a whole lot going on for the first half since it’s just mostly her and the acoustic guitar, but after the halfway point it seems that it gains a little more sound.  It is a bit too long as a ballad, reaching about 7 minutes in length so that’s a worry but otherwise I liked it.

 

 

Maika’s debut mini-album (that’s how I’m classifying it), shows off Maika’s vocals kind of nicely with a bit of a Western kind of feel and for the most part she did it quite nicely.  Her vocals still are hard to get used to though since she’s so nasally.  I think she can release better music as her career continues to move forward.

 

Maika – Oshiete yo ~miseducation~ June 24, 2010

Filed under: Maika — solarblade @ 5:13 pm

Track Listing

  1. Oshiete yo ~miseducation~
  2. better day

1. Oshiete yo ~miseducation~

After “never cry” which was a pretty serious song, Oshiete yo lightens up the mood.  The song has a pretty fun vibe going on and I love the fact there’s a whole lot of brass to mix in with Maika’s guitar playing.  Now Maika’s vocals are still a bit rough to listen to, but she’s got a good smoky voice that with more time she can sound amazing with it.  Then again she sounds a whole lot better than her previous A-side.

2. better day

The B-side takes a rather depressing tone for better day.  I love the change of sound because of the song is mostly a piano track with some background stuff going on.  Maika’s vocals are a bit more stable, but sometimes she can squeak up.  After a while the drums and guitar come in and take over, but still sounds so good as a hopeful B-side.  I liked this much better to be honest.

 

 

While next week is the release of Maika’s album, “Possible”.  Oshiete ya ~miseducation~ to me is a great single from her.  I do like upbeat nature of the A-side quite a bit and that PV for it is pretty lulzy as well.  better day though was pretty damn good for a B-side since it’s a hopeful and yet sad song and I love those.  Sweet single!

 

Maika – never cry June 3, 2010

Filed under: Maika — solarblade @ 3:20 pm

Track Listing

  1. never cry
  2. real size

1. never cry

Ok, yeah 3 major label single reviews in a row hahaha.  Here we get to Maika’s major label debut never cry and it seems Maika’s vocals remind me of Avril Lavigne’s vocals but in Japanese and not in the way it’s ruined.  I don’t know why but her uber throaty vocals gave the song punch and it ended up actually being good. 

2. real size

The B-side though takes the seriousness out of “never cry” and leaves us with a nice upbeat B-side and I’ve found myself enjoying this song quite a bit more than the A-side which is a good thing since she’s capable of releasing strong songs on both sides of the spectrum. 

 

 

I think Maika’s debut major single is pretty good even though her vocals are definitely not for everyone, at least the B-side was able to sound fun and interesting.  Since she already announced another single and album, I can’t wait to see what’s in store from Maika