Kurayami Monogatari

Would love a comment every so often <<

Minami Kizuki – Ai Tsumugi/Shiawase no Tane October 7, 2012

Filed under: Minami Kizuki — solarblade @ 7:20 am

Track Listing

  1. Ai Tsumugi
  2. Shiawase no Tane
  3. Ai Tsumugi (Karaoke)
  4. Shiawase no Tane (Karaoke)

1. Ai Tsumugi

>.> REALLY?  Are we really reusing this song as an A-side again?!?  I guess due to how well-known Ai Tsumugi is, It became the primary A-side once again.  Reviewing it for the third time, the song still doesn’t seem to really impress me much because of it hinderences from Minami’s shima-uta style.  I just really can’t get into why this song is popular enough to have English and Chinese versions (digitally released though in 2011) and now the original reappears as an A-side, it baffles me.

2. Shiawase no Tane

The other A-side, which is a new track, Shiawase no Tane is a bit more joyous and upbeat of a song which is something I’ve started to really enjoy from Minami.  She sounds straightforward with her vocals and sounds happy to be doing the song.  It’s really cute and something I would love more from her in the future!

 

 

As this is the 4th single in the era, this one kind of seemed rather pointless seeing as Ai Tsumugi is being promoted once again as the primary song.  I still feel that style of her voice is the main problem with that song, beyond that it’s kind of a typical ballad from her.  Shiawase no Tane though is cute, upbeat, and just very bright and something I can really enjoy from her!  Yay!

 

Minami Kizuki – Kizashi March 8, 2012

Filed under: Minami Kizuki — solarblade @ 4:36 am

Track Listing

  1. Kizashi
  2. Zutto Zutto
  3. Izayoi
  4. Kizashi (Karaoke)
  5. Zutto Zutto (Karaoke)

1. Kizashi

Rainstick?  I heard that at the beginning of the song for sure!!!  It’s weird listening to the song because Minami is pretty much straightforward in this ballad.  Her shima-uta style isn’t as up to the front like in many other songs of hers so this is actually quite nice to listen to all the way.  The arrangement is a bit plain but there’s times where I enjoy the soft pace. 

2. Zutto Zutto

Released as a digital single prior to the single’s release, Zutto Zutto sounds a little similar to “Kizashi” but that’s because of the instruments present which is still mainly piano and strings.  I will say a big difference is that Minami’s vocals are a little more riskier since she’s hitting high notes and pulling off the shima-uta style a bit more.  I do somehow find myself enjoying this a tad bit more but once again ballads aren’t my cup of tea.

3. Izayoi

The second B-side doesn’t surprise me as it’s another ballad to deal with.  Of the three songs on the single, Izayoi has the cleanest vocals since she only does the note twitching in a very small amount compared.  However, at this point of the single, the arrangement is really boring me to death and makes me want her to add something else to the music.  Still it’s pretty overall.

 

 

As this is Minami’s 3rd single for the era, it’s simple and maybe a little boring at different points but at least she’s worknig on her vocals and she can sing without overloading on her vocal style in her songs unlike in “Warabegami”.  Kizashi is nice but a little too simple and white for my tastes.  Zutto Zutto was the better song on the single but not by much since Izayoi could possibly surpass in the future…I don’t know but she needs something to spice her music up a little bit.

 

Minami Kizuki – Warabegami ~Watashi no Takaramono~ April 29, 2010

Filed under: Minami Kizuki — solarblade @ 6:12 am

Track Listing

  1. Warabegami ~Watashi no Takaramono~
  2. Hoshi no Saku Michi

1. Warabegami ~Watashi no Takaramono~

Warabegami to just sounds so weird to me.  I do like the ballady folk/rock/pop w/e you wanna call it this time around.  However, at the cost of the good arrangement the song, Minami really loves her shima-uta and it just sounds like a whole lot of ad-libbing when I know she’s saying something.  Like a fellow reader said, it reminds them of Hajime Chitose and kind of agree, but Minami should focus on getting her singing a little more stable then singing like she’s drowning or something.  I guess I can’t bitch because this style is more traditional and such, but c’mon it’s like Japan’s version of screamo…you either like it or horribly despise it.

2. Hoshi no Saku Michi

As for the B-side, I was actually a bit more impressed with this song.  It reminds me of an ending for some drama/anime.  I like that distant piano playing in the background before the song finallu opens to more piano, guitars, and drums.  It’s actually quite relaxing for a B-side and for the most part she doesn’t execute that style she’s known for in this song as much and the times she does it’s done nicely and not like “Warabegami’s” fest of it.

 

 

As Minami’s 2nd single of the era, Warabegami is definitely not better than “Luna Regalo”.  I do like the arrangement of the song don’t get me wrong, but this girl really tried to hard with that shima-uta style of singing…almost.  In fact it could possibly be my least favorite song from her right now.  Hoshi no Saku Michi however was the saving grace for the single since it was like the better stuff she has released already.  Switch the songs around the single plz!

 

Minami Kizuki – Luna Regalo ~Tsuki Kara no Okurimono~ March 18, 2010

Filed under: Minami Kizuki — solarblade @ 7:50 pm

Track Listing

  1. Luna Regalo ~Tsuki Kara no Okurimono~
  2. Lily
  3. Kimi no Tame ni

1. Luna Regalo ~Tsuki Kara no Okurimono~

After a rather hard album to sit through, Minami picked herself up and returns with Luna Regalo which is actually a pretty song in itself.  I really do like the almost folkish arrangement going here and it seems Minami has worked on her vocals quite a bit because now she doesn’t sound as rough as she did.  Her shima-uta has gotten somewhat better and more controlled.  Then this strange thing happens in the first chorus like…maybe it’s the file…but it sounded horribly messy, but this song is majestic and very pretty.

2. Lily

Hey!  So we get a rock song from Minami now and while that’s rather new to me, Lily beings Minami into a new area to her music and it actually isn’t bad because she isn’t heavily relying on her island vocals as much, but it’s still there but I think it gave a rather mediocre arrangement some life and that’s a good thing.

3. Kimi no Tame ni

Finishing the single, Kimi no Tame ni is of course another ballad from Minami and right from the start I was impressed by the song’s simplicity and shows off Minami’s vocals a whole lot since she sings through her clear low vocals up to her shima-uta vocals and while I’m still very uncomfortable whenever she sings like it, it’s still a good song otherwise because of the pretty arrangement.

 

 

Minami begins a new era with a pretty strong single…maybe as strong as “Shiroi Tsuki”.  Luna Regalo was actually a great example of a good ballad and coming from a shima-uta styled artist.  Lily was a nice try at a pop/rock song and Kimi no Tame ni was another good ballad.

 

Minami Kizuki – Kana -Itoshiki Hito yo- August 19, 2009

Filed under: Minami Kizuki — solarblade @ 5:56 pm

Kana_-Itoshiki_Hito_yo-

Track Listing

  1. Taiyou to Kakurenbo
  2. Ai Tsumugi
  3. Shiki Utakata
  4. Hotaru Koi
  5. Dareka no Tame ni
  6. Kurenai
  7. Shiroi Tsuki
  8. Tsuki to Penguin
  9. Sunrise
  10. Asana Yuuna
  11. Tsubasa
  12. Kokoro no Film
  13. Hikari (album mix)

1. Taiyou to Kakurenbo

Beginning the album with the shortest vocal track, Taiyou to Kakurenbo stood out for me because it has a slight electronica feel and mixed in with traditional sounds, it was a totally different experience than her other tracks.  Mix in Minami’s shima-uta style of singing and you get a pretty interesting combination altogether and I quite liked it a lot. 

2. Ai Tsumugi

Comparing Ai Tsumugi to something more recent, her debut A-side is a little underwhelming.  It’s a pretty basic shima-uta ballad and while I enjoy Minami’s vocals quite a bit.  She kind of destroys it pretty quickly with her note clippings and I would’ve liked it without that. 

3. Shiki Utakata

After her debut, we go back to something from the “Kaiki Nisshoku e.p.”.  Shiki Utakata, also a ballad actually sounds like something that would be otherwise mainstream with the slow pop/rockish sound that’s going on.  Her singing is a little bit wild here, but she can carry the tune pretty well and it’s actually not that bad. 

4. Hotaru Koi

Our first new track finally pops up next.  It’s oddly familiar to “Shiki Utakata” just take out the guitars and you basically end up with this track.  I actually think Minami’s lighter singing is quite nice here and she isn’t dependent on her style as well which is a nice surprise.  The later parts of the song though unleashes that style in a pretty bad way since Minami is in a higher register and it just doesn’t work.

5. Dareka no Tame ni

The first half of her 2nd single (LOL at “Wasurenagusa” not making it) Dareka no Tame ni is definitely a stronger A-side on the album with it’s very loud and powerful arrangement.  Her vocals are still a little strained when she gets to a higher note, but the fact there’s BKGD vocals, and a pretty sweet guitar solo really saved the track from being too mediocre.

6. Kurenai

Right from the start, Kurenai has a pretty melancholic feel with a very depressing piano melody that starts off.  I actually think Minami really sounds pretty in this song and her shima-uta style is overboard here and you can tell it’s gotten better since her debut and I loved it.  There’s this high note that she hits and it really sent chills down my spine, that was pretty amazing right there.  I think right now this beats all of the tracks.

7. Shiroi Tsuki

Representing the final A-side of the era, Shiroi Tsuki is once again another ballad.  It might be in the middle between the other A-sides since “Ai Tsumugi” has gotten a little bit worse over time and “Dareka no Tame ni” has gotten better.  This track is actually been consistent despite the fact that Minami is way over-expressing her style.  It actually kind of sound like a folk song, but with a stronger piano and bongo appearance and the chorus.  It’s pretty nice.

8. Tsuki to Penguin

Hey, there’s Penguin in the title how fortunate.  I found myself thinking this was a folk track as well since it flowed like one pretty well.  Minami’s vocals are quite nice and there’s no sense of the shima-uta style at all in this song and right there makes this song a great listen.  Then again Minami is also sounding a little more nasally, I can’t tell but it’s different than the other tracks, but I like it.

9. Sunrise

I love the beginning to Sunrise.  It doesn’t sound like anything on the album so far and I love the rhythm and feel to it.  Minami is back into her normal sound and deeper tone as well.  After a while it gets kind of a cute sound going and there’s a woodwind solo that’s pretty to listen to.  I think Minami needs more of these upbeat tracks because she can pull it off quite nicely.

10. Asana Yuuna

Our next track, Asana Yuuna has a more relaxed atmosphere, but her decision to have her style in this track kind of ruins the mood for me.  It’s nice when you don’t have to hear it, but it kind of disrupts the emotional value the song should’ve had.  It’s kind of a nice mid-tempo track and could be dreamy after awhile.

11. Tsubasa

See what I mean?  Minami has a real pretty voice without having to swerve it all over the place.  Once she gets into the chorus she does use it lightly so that’s good that she doesn’t go hogwild.  I really like Tsubasa’s more happier sound of a ballad and is another track that I really ended up liking from her.

12. Kokoro no Film

The last new track, Kokoro no Film is a little more eventful than the last track and continues to use a lighter shima-uta style to get by.  I don’t know but the mid-temponess of this song sounds a little familiar to “Piano”.  I don’t know but this track doesn’t really stick out for me at all and seems to be just filler.

13. Hikari (album mix)

Hikari (originally the lone B-side off of “Dareka no Tame ni/Wasurenagusa”) has gotten a change up on the album.  It sounds a lot more refined and the drums were taken out for the song.  It also ditched the opening from the original as well.  It doesn’t sound like she didn’t resing it though, but it’s ok.  The lack of powerful drums does take the original power it had….but it’s still a great B-side otherwise.

Tracks Recommended

  • Kurenai
  • Sunrise
  • Taiyou to Kakurenbo
  • Hikari (album mix)
  • Tsuki to Penguin

Song of Avoidance

  • Kokoro no Film

Minami’s debut album is quite nice.  I mean the arrangements were different from each other to be a worthy listen, but I think the fault is the Shima-uta style itself.  It’s not for everyone I’ll tell you that.  I’ve read that it sounds like something Atari Kousuke and Hajime Chitose would release, but I’ve never listened to their music so I can’t compare.  Still it’s a good listen just watch out for the vocals XD

 

Minami Kizuki – Shiroi Tsuki July 19, 2009

Filed under: Minami Kizuki — solarblade @ 10:31 am

shiroitsuki

Track Listing

  1. Shiroi Tsuki
  2. Hikari Sasumichi
  3. Shiokaze to Kogarashi

1. Shiroi Tsuki

It’s funny how much a song sounds better with a full arrangement.  Unlike the e.p. version there’s actually piano and some bongos that lead in the song.  I’m still not feeling for the shima-uta style that’s prevalent with Minami as I think she sounds really good without it.  It’s good that it does make her stand out in this ballad, but seriously she sounds really good without it. 

2. Hikari Sasumichi

The first B-side comes up and it’s even more of a simpler ballad than “Shiroi Tsuki”.  I really like how the verses are mostly absent of her signature sound which is a plus.  Even then she’s not depending on it so much and that makes me a happy person as we get to hear more of her nice vocals.  She’s no ayaka, but she can hold her fort down pretty well.  I do think the song is a bit better than “Shiroi Tsuki” albeit a little bit better, but that’s because of the more stable vocals here.

3. Shiokaze to Kogarashi

How unexpected that Minami would put out something that’s upbeat and so bouncy.  I mean it’s good to finally hear something that’s not a ballad and full of the meh vocals we’re usually stuck with.  She’s actually using even less of the shima-uta to the point where it’s not even that noticeable (thank god).  At the price of that, her vocals are a bit airy and flat at points since she doesn’t have a good overall vibrato (not shima-uta, but like regular vibrato).

 

 

I got to say, of this era, Shiroi Tsuki is her best single since she doesn’t use her shima-uta throughout the entire single which is such a plus.  Shiroi Tsuki is a bit like “Ai Tsumugi” in the way she overuses it while both Hikaru Sasumichi and Shiokaze to Kogarashi aren’t dependent on it (the latter not even using it).  She probably should get lessons though to get some regular vibrato since Shiokaze to Kogarashi was lacking in that area…Still good single.

 

Minami Kizuki – Kaiki Nisshoku E.P.

Filed under: Minami Kizuki — solarblade @ 10:09 am

kaikanshoku

Track Listing

  1. Shiroi Tsuki (Kaiki Nisshoku ver.) with Chen Min
  2. Taiyou to Kakurenbo with MIHO HATORI (CIBO MATTO)
  3. Shiki Utakata with sleepy.ab

1. Shiroi Tsuki (Kaiki Nisshoku ver.) with Chen Min

It’s kind of weird to see Minami release a short release.  Here we have basically Minami singing with some flute and that’s about it.  The vocal thing that I keep bagging her about is actually her main style of singing called “Shima-Uta” and it’s where she purposely clips the note and that makes the singing sound like it’s messy (and it is, but it’s kind of forgettable).  I don’t like how that the song is really short and basically nothing but flute is backing her up.  It kind of sounds too empty if you ask me.

2. Taiyou to Kakurenbo with MIHO HATORI (CIBO MATTO)

Being 10 seconds longer, Taiyou to Kakurenbo is quite nice sounding actually and the slight electronica feel mixed with Minami’s shima-uta style fits in pretty well.  It also sounds a little traditional with the drums pounding away like it is.  It’s quite nice actually and is a step-up from the last track.

3. Shiki Utakata with sleepy.ab

Then we get a ballad outta Shiki Utakata.  It is a bit more towards Minami’s vocals which is better, then again it is making her standout is a somewhat bad way because of how she’s choosing her notes to flail around like that behind the more band-like sound. 

 

 

So Minami releases an E.P. on iTunes a week before her single “Shiroi Tsuki” which is a little odd considering what we have.  This Shiroi Tsuki felt really empty and the flute mixing with Minami’s signature vocals were not a good pairing.  Taiyou to Kakurenbo and Shiki Utakata sounded a lot better, but that’s because the arrangement was more filling to the occasion.  Also, she was collaborating here, so I’m guessing she’s trying out new waters right?