Kurayami Monogatari

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MIYAVI – Ahead Of The Light February 23, 2013

Filed under: MIYAVI — solarblade @ 7:47 pm

aheadofthelight

Track Listing

  1. Ahead Of The Light
  2. Ahead Of The Light (Instrumental)

1. Ahead Of The Light

I wasn’t expecting something so soon from MIYAVI, but Ahead Of The Light is quite something.  At first I kind of thought he worked with YUKSEK again because the song shares the same dance/guitar riffs with “DAY 1” which I’ve said was pretty damn amazing.  With this track, the energy is still quite aggressive and the dance beat is still more prominent with MIYAVI’s quick playing.  Even the Engrish is available too lol.  I actually like the song a lot even if it doesn’t have the same angst that “DAY 1” had.  It’s pretty awesome!

Like I said above, I didn’t think MIYAVI would start his next set of releases so quickly after “SAMURAI SESSIONS vol.1”, but Ahead Of The Light might’ve been better had it been on that album because I did wish there was more to the single.  The song itself though is pretty awesome so it might have helped the single out more.  I hope he continues to release awesome songs!

 

MIYAVI – SAMURAI SESSIONS vol. 1 December 5, 2012

Filed under: MIYAVI — solarblade @ 8:19 am

samuraisessions1

Track Listing

  1. GANRYU (MIYAVI vs. HIFANA)
  2. STRONG (MIYAVI vs. KREVA)
  3. DAY 1 (MIYAVI vs. YUKSEK)
  4. SILENT ANGER (MIYAVI vs. TAKESHI HOSOMI)
  5. PLEASURE! (MIYAVI vs. H ZETT M)
  6. HANABI (MIYAVI vs. HIROMITSU AGATSUMA vs. JIN OKI)
  7. Inori wo (MIYAVI vs. SEIJI KAMEDA vs. MIU SAKAMOTO)

1. GANRYU (MIYAVI vs. HIFANA)

The album begins with a short intro track which is a collaboration with HIFANA and it really kicks off with song disc scratching before MIYAVI introduces but goes into this annoying scream before it stops and his guitar-playing plus bongos start up.  There’s not much to it besides that so it really didn’t strike me as anything special.

2. STRONG (MIYAVI vs. KREVA)

Moving onto the singles that represented this concept album, STRONG comes first but I still to think it’s the weaker of the two A-sides but this is still pretty good.  KREVA takes up majority of the song rapping beside MIYAVI’s guitars while he himself only vocally appears in the chorus, screaming lol.  It’s a wild song for sure and it still is on the album!  Though I still prefer the other version of STRONG from the single.

3. DAY 1 (MIYAVI vs. YUKSEK)

This was just a surprising song from MIYAVI because this song was like a mix of his style and electro and the way he pulls off the song was just cool…especially the verses with the one word like ~seishun chaos…back to basics…exploitation etc.~ it was just so different for the guy and it’s such a badass song…definitely one of my favorite MIYAVI tunes out there.

4. SILENT ANGER (MIYAVI vs. TAKESHI HOSOMI)

Moving onto the album’s new tracks, I was curious to see how they all went because he collaborated with a lot of people I don’t know (cept Miu Sakamoto).  SILENT ANGER is quiet when compared to previous tracks, but it’s also a pretty freeform track.  Of course MIYAVI is sitting back and letting Takeshi lead and he has good vocals on him and he’s singing in English which is bonus points.  Overall it’s a pretty well-done track and is another favorite on the mini-album.

5. PLEASURE! (MIYAVI vs. H ZETT M)

I though that besides “STRONG”, this was probably the album’s most playful song because it mixes MIYAVI’s guitars with what I assume is H ZETT M on the piano giving this rather fun track.  MIYAVI also seems to be having fun singing this track with a lighter tone but also sticking to his gritty tone as well.  There’s also a lot of other vocals too (H ZETT M is a band then I guess?).  It’s a pretty interesting song I can’t deny that!

6. HANABI (MIYAVI vs. HIROMITSU AGATSUMA vs. JIN OKI)

Oh hey! collaborating with two people?  HANABI is interesting because it seems like there’s some shimasen playing behind MIYAVI’s acoustic guitar which is really unique and at the same time VERY intriguing…kind of like it’s a mix of the past and the present.  MIYAVI is singing the most but I’m not sure who’s singing behind him…it could be all three, but I don’t know.  This is just a really interesting track and I’m happy that MIYAVI is experimenting a lot with his sound.

7. Inori wo (MIYAVI vs. SEIJI KAMEDA vs. MIU SAKAMOTO)

The mini concludes with another three-person collaboration with Inori wo (also is the only track written in kanji BTW).  Inori wo starts off on a slow and quiet note with just him on acoustic guitar and then it seems like MIYAVI and Miu are singing together which is great because they compliment each other nicely.  I’m not sure of what’s Seiji’s role was, but I think he arranged the song so that could be it…Still it’s light and not bad.

 

 

Wow, MIYAVI definitely jumped up from his “WHAT’S MY NAME?” era by going on this collaboration project which really was a good move and brought back that experimentive passion that MIYAVI has always been known for besides being an amazing guitarist!  SAMURAI SESSIONS vol. 1 is a great mini-album and I hope there’s a second one in the future as well!!!

 

MIYAVI vs YUKSEK – DAY 1 August 19, 2012

Filed under: MIYAVI — solarblade @ 9:20 pm

Track Listing

  1. DAY 1
  2. FUTURISTIC LOVE 2012
  3. DAY 1 (instrumental)

1. DAY 1

Hey, MIYAVI went electro for his next collaborative single in his Samurai Sessions project.  I have to say that I was actually digging his experimentation back on “WHAT’S MY NAME?” and seeing him try it again definitely made me happy.  DAY 1 seems to fuse electronic beats and synths alongside MIYAVI’s guitarwork to get this really epic mixture.  I’ve never heard of YUKSEK but I think he handles the electronics so that’s cool.  Definitely a lot more memorable to me than “STRONG”.

2. FUTURISTIC LOVE 2012

Talking about “WHAT’S MY NAME?” it seems thay MIYAVI decided to update FUTURISTIC LOVE which was a pretty awesome song from the album.  The new version seems to clear things up and throws in my knick-knacks to make it pop out more and I love those changes because it gave the song a LOT more color.  I’m not sure if YUKSEK was involved here but if he was then kudos.  I still like “DAY 1” more but this is a great coupling to the single!

 

 

If MIYAVI continues this Samurai Sessions for longer, the possibility of the album will be amazing because he’s been doing so much better since “STRONG”.  Both tracks are a great mixture of electro and rock and sound great…of course MIYAVI gets props for still kicking ass as a guitaris lol.

 

MIYAVI vs. KREVA – STRONG October 5, 2011

Filed under: MIYAVI — solarblade @ 8:12 am

Track Listing

  1. STRONG
  2. STRONG (MYV “Exclusive” ver.)
  3. STRONG (Instrumental)

1. STRONG

MIYAVI…always the excellent guitar-player he is comes out with STRONG and boy it’s a surprise for me.  KREVA who’s a pretty well-known hip-hop artist is here collaborating with MIYAVI and it’s great to see more collaborations to be honest.  While it shows that MIYAVI does the music part while KREVA takes lyrics and it seems pretty damn awesome and KREVA raps nicely.  I do notice MIYAVI just yells in the chorus and that’s his contribution.  Funky song and while it isn’t musically filled (more like what MIYAVI’s sound was in the “WHAT’S MY NAME?” era.

2. STRONG (MYV “Exclusive” ver.)

I was curious to what this version was about and it seems that MIYAVI is singing but with different lyrics.  I love MIYAVI’s vocals and they really have a nice gritty feel to em.  It feels like a totally different song but in the same arrangement and melody.  It’s kind of wild and brings out such an edgy feel.  Hmmmm….

 

 

As it’s the first in a project that has MIYAVI collaborating, the first, STRONG was pretty cool.  MIYAVI is pretty damn good of an artist and his skills were put to the test and it sounds so good.  KREVA did a pretty good job and his skills were done pretty well along with the high-energy guitar playing.  Though I must say, at the end of the day MIYAVI kills it when it was just him and seriously liked the other version better.  I can only wonder who he’ll collaborate with next…

 

MIYAVI – WHAT’S MY NAME? e.p. February 13, 2011

Filed under: MIYAVI — solarblade @ 7:49 am

Track Listing

  1. WHAT’S MY NAME?
  2. WHAT’S MY NAME feat. Yoshida Ichirou (from ZAZEN BOYS)
  3. WHAT’S MY NAME? feat. Hama Okamoto (from OKAMOTO’S)
  4. WHAT’S MY NAME? feat. Hinata Hidekazu (from Straightener/Nothing’s Carved In Stone/EOR)

1. WHAT’S MY NAME?

Beginning this recut single is the original song from MIYAVI’s most recently released album.  WHAT’S MY NAME? wasn’t one of the more memorable songs from the album, but it’s was a pretty interesting song since it did showcased what that album was about and it was MIYAVI raw and unplugged.  The last time I’ve seen this kind of raw side was “Are you ready to ROCK?” and that was an impressive song, but this kind of is under it…but it’s different and I really do love his guitar playing.  Lyrics could’ve had more, but whatever, I mean yelling ~WHAT’S MY NAME?~ does get bothersome at the end lol.

2. WHAT’S MY NAME? feat. Yoshida Ichirou (from ZAZEN BOYS)

I do recognize ZAZEN BOYS…but from where I do not know.  As the rest of the single is the song I guess played differently through other guitarists, the first is kind of a surprise since the sound of it is sound different.  The guitar is a lot more lower and darker like iono.  Besides that, it’s the same playing just a rougher undertone.

3. WHAT’S MY NAME? feat. Hama Okamoto (from OKAMOTO’S)

To be honest, it was tough to find the big differences between this version of the song and the original which is a little strange, but there must be a reason for Hama Okamoto being in the song.  To be honest…I wonder if he was also doing guitar parts…either way…kind of the meh here.

4. WHAT’S MY NAME? feat. Hinata Hidekazu (from Straightener/Nothing’s Carved In Stone/EOR)

So I do know here, Hinata is the bassist from Straightener and it’s clearly he had fun playing the melody of the song and actually totally made the song a whole lot more exciting than any of the other versions.  Though once again…what was the point for this?

Probably one of the more stranger recut singles I’ve come across, WHAT’S MY NAME? didn’t really need the small changes like the ones found on here…maybe a lil more oomph could’ve helped out…but still this is kind of useless and maybe not worth the money to be honest.

 

MIYAVI – WHAT’S MY NAME? October 12, 2010

Filed under: MIYAVI — solarblade @ 10:46 am

Track Listing

  1. WHAT’S MY NAME
  2. TORTURE
  3. A-HA
  4. CHILLIN’ CHILLIN’ MONEY BLUE$
  5. I LOVE YOU, I LOVE YOU, I LOVE YOU, AND I HATE YOU.
  6. MOON
  7. GRAVITY
  8. UNIVERSE
  9. UNBREAKABLE
  10. SHELTER
  11. SUPER HERO (Album ver.)
  12. Suteki na Mirai
  13. FUTURISTIC LOVE
  14. SURVIVE (Album ver.)

1. WHAT’S MY NAME?

Starting the album off with the title track, it’s no surprise we’d get something that shows off MIYAVI’s guitar-playing and he’s still one of the quirkiest guitarists of our time.  Now getting into other things, it seems that MIYAVI has lost a lot of degrees to his music as in he doesn’t have a full band.  Only a drummer and himself so that makes this album rather unplugged but not fully acoustic.  I do think it’s pretty neat though that MIYAVI is actually sort of rapping in the song.  Interesting opening.

2. TORTURE

Just being at 3 minutes, TORTURE is actually the shortest song off the album and it surprises me because it’s also the only physical single released in the era.  While on the review, I said it didn’t connect with me really, but somehow it turned into one of my favorite MIYAVI songs of recent times.  It could be the heavy guitar and funky arrangement that got to me or MIYAVI’s lyrics that I could understand (for the most part).  I mean I’m surprised he made a song that sounded so complete without the bass and such…

3. A-HA

Why do I have a feeling that this sort of reminds me of “Shindemo Boogie-Woogie” and “Gigpig Boogie” but of course in a lighter style?  To me, MIYAVI’s vocals seem rather covered up by the arrangement and a good portion is mostly him yelling, but what can ya do?  It has a good swing to it and when he does sing, it’s alright.  Not so good after, “TORTURE”.

4. CHILLIN’ CHILLIN’ MONEY BLUE$

I’m noticing by now that even though it’s of high quality…it sounds like it wasn’t refined and kind of just sounds like it was done in one try in the studio.  CHILLIN CHILLIN MONEY BLUE$ has a pretty good beat and MIYAVI sounds kind of slick and cool singing it.  There’s also someone else singing along (might just be him), still it’s interesting and lowkey when compared to other songs.

5. I LOVE YOU, I LOVE YOU, I LOVE YOU, AND I HATE YOU

I was wondering what we’d get from such a title like this.  I love the arrangement since it has a good riff going and with MIYAVI singing soft again, it sounds rather interesting.  It might be pretty straightforward for him, but I think it’s rather cool and it grows into this sweet guitar song.  It might’ve been better if it had more instruments and a bigger bang…but it’s good…then again it might get annoying towards the end, but this song is good.

6. MOON

The next three songs for me somehow seems all related to one another somehow besides the obviousness of the titles.  MOON for me is the softest song of the album since MIYAVI is reduced to almost whispering the lyrics.  I found this minimalistic sound he was going for pretty interesting and the intricacies of MIYAVI’s guitar-playing stands out in the song. 

7. GRAVITY

Oh I guess, GRAVITY takes up the slowest song off the album.  The problem though is that it’s way too slow and drags 2 minutes of a total of 6 minutes, which is basically the same guitar chords over and over and MIYAVI just trying to keep his boredom to a level where it doesn’t seem noticeable.  After the 2 minutes, MIYAVI really lets himself by screaming ~LET ME OUUUUUUUUT!~  It’s not very tasteful to hear especially how he screams it like he’s being stabbed or something.  It repeats again, but there’s drums added to make it a bit more interesting, but I was turned off by the first 3-4 minutes that I was just not interested past that.  Way too long and too poor of a choice to do with the 6 minutes.

8. UNIVERSE

Luckily after that weirdness of “GRAVITY”, UNIVERSE picks up the slack with this really cool guitar riff that sometimes to me sounds like synth playing around as well (it might be actually, but a mix with MIYAVI’s playing).  While I do hear a lot of English involved here, the music once again covers things up, but once MIYAVI starts trying to pull off Chester Bennington’s vocal style, UNIVERSE becomes this very angsty tune that made me notice quickly.  I thought it was one of the best songs off the album, but I know some people will prolly disagree with that.

9. UNBREAKABLE

This time around, I was surprised to hear drums open up a song instead of MIYAVI.  To me, this song is probably a bit too messy and kind of all over the place in its arrangement because the guitar is playing some low chords and kind of runs a bit too gritty to make a real melody out of it.  Once the chorus (or I think it is)  it just goes from worse to terrible…wow…This is just a bit icky.

10. SHELTER

At least with SHELTER we actually get a good sounding melody going here and it has a great beat to go along with it.  I also can tell that this song has English strung out throughout and I like how this is one of the simpler songs as well.  It reminds me of a much lighter “TORTURE” which great to have on an album that so far has disappointed me.

11. SUPER HERO (Album ver.)

Getting the second digital single of the era out of the way, I haven’t been able to listen to the original so I can’t say a lot about the differences between the two.  I wonder if the difference is that the digital singles were before this whole two man band thing.  It’s nice but it kind of pales to other songs on the album and his vocals are very strained in this song and you can tell pretty easily.

12. Suteki na Mirai

As the only song not in caps on this album (and written in kanji for that matter) Suteki na Mirai actually another ballad-like song on the album.  At first it was nice just to hear MIYAVI with only acoustic guitar, but that idea gets erased drums come in after a bit.  At least MIYAVI’s solo is pretty impressive and seems MIYAVI is liking this solo a bit more than the others he did.  Good and simple tune for sure, but could have done more to it.

13. FUTURISTIC LOVE

Just like “UNIVERSE”, FUTURISTIC LOVE carries this interesting style that a lot of the other songs are just missing and it makes me wonder why these two songs sound so much cooler and better handled than most of the other songs on the album.  I mean you can hear there was something else besides drums and guitar here and it made me happy.  I do think that just like “UNIVERSE” that this song gets pretty repetitive in the arrangement and can become a bore after a while (especially past the half way mark where MIYAVI stops singing…).  Ok, so it might not have been done right, but it still has life in it.

14. SURVIVE (Album ver.)

While I might not have heard the original “SUPER HERO”, I have heard the original of SURVIVE and I much prefer the digital release than the reedited version of the song.  It seems that giving the song the WHAT’S MY NAME? tough kind of made it less energetic and less powerful of a song.  It’s just very meh for me even though I do like SURVIVE as a song and was very raw.

Tracks Recommened

  • TORTURE
  • UNIVERSE
  • SHELTER
  • I LOVE YOU, I LOVE YOU, I LOVE YOU, AND I HATE YOU

Song of Avoidance

  • GRAVITY

You know, I don’t know what the hell happened with MIYAVI on this album.  I mean his last album, “Miyavi -THIS IZ THE JAPANESE KABUKI ROCK-” sounded full and of energy and completeness.  This album has the energy down, but the completeness of the songs felt way low and there’s so much potential in these songs that just wasn’t there (but GRAVITY, that purely sucked).  I mean maybe it was supposed to be like “Miyaviuta -Dokusou-“, but that album was good, this just was yeesh…

 

MIYAVI – TORTURE September 15, 2010

Filed under: MIYAVI — solarblade @ 3:12 pm

Track Listing

  1. TORTURE
  2. S.M.F.B.

1. TORTURE

Wow, it has been a while since I’ve heard something interesting from MIYAVI (yeah, his named changed once again…). TORTURE is basically what you expect from him.  I mean his signature vocal style and his pretty awesome guitar playing.  However, it feels rather light since I was expecting some bass and harder sounds and add to the fact that it’s shorter than 3 minutes and you don’t get a lot from the song, but it’s a short and quirky little tune.  Also, I think part (if not all) is in English…hmmmm

2. S.M.F.B.

Being about 10 seconds longer than “TORTURE”, S.M.F.B. has a more faster style to it than the previous which means more wild MIYAVI in his guitar-playing and his (well…yelling).  Though the English that’s heard is so damn funny since the title literally is ~super mother fucking bitch~ it makes you wonder how the hell he got away with that.  Still it’s missing a spark that his previous songs had.

 

 

What happened MIYAVI?  You’re last album sounded great and full, but TORTURE is what it is, it’s kind of torture to the fans because it sounds so unlike him.  I mean, it’s almost like a demo disc in a way.  If “What’s My Name?” is going to end up sounding like this all the way then I’m already on the bars of being disappointed…BTW if you can get back to music, so can you melody.! DO IT!  WE MISS YOU!