Kurayami Monogatari

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Sukima Switch – Eureka August 19, 2012

Filed under: Sukima Switch — solarblade @ 8:30 pm

Track Listing

  1. Eureka
  2. Kimi ga Ii Nara (from “TOUR 2012 “musium””)
  3. Guarana (from “TOUR 2012 “musium””)
  4. Eureka (Anime ver.)
  5. Eureka (backing track)

1. Eureka

For as long as I have been listening to Sukima Switch, I’ve been waiting for something upbeat to come along as an A-side and we finally got Eureka and I like it a lot.  It’s still pretty much an acoustic affair but there’s some added things that fill it out.  Takuya sounds a little more nasally than mormal but I thought it worked for the song, overall it’s probably the best song I’ve heard from them yet (sans “Andersen”).

2. Kimi ga Ii Nara (from “TOUR 2012 “musium””)

While there’s no original B-side on the single we ended up with two live versions of two of their older songs.  The first is Kimi ga Ii Nara (which is an album song from their debut major album, “Natsugumo Noise”).  At first it starts off with just Takuya and acoustic guitar and then moves into a mid-tempo tune.  For the most part it goes by without faults but it’s about as interesting and most of the “musium” singles and that’s not good.

3. Guarana (from “TOUR 2012 “musium””)

The next track is a live take on their 8th A-side.  This seems to be their fun song becuase it perked up the crowd which is good because I love the energy out of Guarana as well.  Takuya is also having fun with the tune as well which is a nice change.  I might have to find the studio cut after hearing this!

 

 

It’s funny, Sukima Switch has never been on my radar because the last couple of singles were a bit too drony.  Eureka finally broke that monotony for me with its upbeat nature and how it was tied to an anime.  The live versions were nice to, but it was obvious I liked Guarana more than Kimi ga Ii Nara.  Since a best-of is being released this week, it seems it doesn’t affect “Last Scene” and Eureka so we could still get both on a studio album (hopefully).

 

Sukima Switch – Last Scene July 2, 2012

Filed under: Sukima Switch — solarblade @ 7:16 am

Track Listing

  1. Last Scene
  2. Mata ne. (betsu-oke ver.)
  3. Phonograph (Instrumental)
  4. Last Scene (backing track)

1. Last Scene

Oh god, I can’t really take ballads that are longer than 5 minutes so coming into Last Scene, I was just crying because it’s over 6.  Takuya does have pleasant vocals to push the song along with it’s light arrangement (kind of like “Saigo no Hi”, but this has a little more flow to it which does make me smile a little bit.  It gets more dramatic towards the end which is a nice touch.  Not bad and it is the nicest ballad I’ve heard from Sukima Switch.

2. Mata ne. (betsu-oke ver.)

I remembered that Mata ne. was the final track off their most recent album, “musium” but definitely could not remember how it went for the life of me.  The new version doesn’t seem like it’s any different from the original.  A couple seconds shorter and there’s less instrumentation (just acoustic guitar and quiet background stuff).  Nothing too extraordinary but it’s there.

3. Phonograph (Instrumental)

Like their last single, “Hare Tokidoki Kumori”, Last Scene includes an original instrumental in Phonograph.  I did like the hell out of “Gareponku” so I kind of hoped that I would’ve liked this and I do in a different way.  It’s funky and chill which is impressive for them since they normally have quieter songs.  It’s nice background music actually.

 

 

I still haven’t really found my interest in Sukima Switch, but this single as kind of good.  Last Scene might be long for a ballad but it’s pretty and soft…good thing and better than ballads before.  The new version of Mata ne. isn’t really worth it but it’s there and Phonograph was cool for them!  Maybe things will be more interesting this series of singles.

 

Sukima Switch – musium October 12, 2011

Filed under: Sukima Switch — solarblade @ 6:26 am

Track Listing

  1. Jikan no Tomekata
  2. Ice Cream Syndrome (album ver.)
  3. Ishikoro Days
  4. L to R
  5. Song Liar
  6. Sentimental Hometown
  7. Saigo no Hi (album ver.)
  8. Andersen
  9. Smokin’ Rainy Blue
  10. Hare Tokidoki Kumori
  11. Mata ne.

1. Jikan no Tomekata

Jikan no Tomekata does a good job to kick things off in this album and well I was kind of surprised at how awkward Takuya’s vocals were in such a light arrangement.  Luckily, it grows into something nice when the percussion, the strings and of course once Shinatarou joins him in the chorus.  It’s got this hopeful kind of mood in it that I like.  Besides the opening, this was pretty good.

2. Ice Cream Syndrome (album ver.)

As the duo’s first A-side of the era, Ice Cream Syndrome is my favorite of the era and to see that it got a new version was something I wanted to hear.  Being about 30 seconds longer than the single version not much has really changed about the song, but it feels like Takuya resung the song and there’s more presence of certain instruments like strings in the arrangement.  I still enjoy the tunes breezy atmosphere and since it was tied to the Pokemon movie, I felt so happy with this tune.

3. Ishikoro Days

Surprised that out of the B-sides they chose to include this one from “Hare Tokidoki Kumori”.  I actually liked this and while I much preferred a complete version of “Gareponku”, this will do and I found myself enjoying the light pop/rock nature of the song and it worked with Takuya’s vocals (then again he didn’t sound weird like he did in “Jikan no Tomekata”).  It’s pretty simple but done in a good way.

4. L to R

Back to new songs, L to R has this bouncy feel to it with the repetitive piano chords played as the song’s melody.  Once more instruments appear the song keeps on this so-called cute side.  Just like “Ishikoro Days” however, the song is also simple and kind of drifts your mind into a sleepy state (especially since they’re next to each other).  Ehh, if this was someplace else on the album I don’t think I’d be complaining as much but it is what it is.

5. Song Liar

Hey synths!  I know it’s not that much of it, but it’s a nice change after the last song.  I also like that the song has a more serious glow to it which changes the field up a little bit.  I don’t really like the way that Takuya is singing here since here’s doing a little mumbling and his nasal tones appear once again.  Not that there’s too much else wrong here, but this isn’t my kind of song.

6. Sentimental Hometown

Just like a couple of other songs on this album, Sentimental Hometown is quite breezy and it’s the main reason I’m paying attention more to this song than the others.  It isn’t as dramatic like “Ice Cream Syndrome” so it doesn’t really scream out to remember it, but it’s nice, soft, and just easy listening lol.

7. Saigo no Hi (album ver.)

Ehhhh my least favorite of the A-sides appear next and just like “Ice Cream Syndrome” was also slightly changed for the album.  The changes aren’t all that big which is weird but the main change is that Shintarou’s vocals were taken out of the song for the album cut which is a bit rude if you ask me.  Otherwise, Saigo no Hi is still the same slow and boring song it has been since the single was released. 

8. Andersen

Now this is something quite unusual on this album.  It’s upbeat yes, but the surprise use of brass in the song gave the song a jazzier vibe which is something that impressed me a bit.  Yeah, this might be the biggest surprise to the album and it stands out the most against the other songs.  Great and spicy lil tune hahaha

9. Smokin’ Rainy Blue

It just seems the album is getting more exciting towards the end of the album.  “Andersen” showed off a lot of brass, but Smokin’ Rainy Blue shows saxes and more piano that it feels like something that’s unique to the duo and it worked and it’s funny to hear Takuya say the title in the chorus.  It’s an interesting song but “Andersen” was more surprising but these two tracks are clear favorites haha.

10. Hare Tokidoki Kumori

It didn’t feel like the 3rd A-side released in the era has been out long enough and funny enough is the only one to not have had any changes.  I will say after the previous two tracks it’s a little disappointing we’re going back to what the album sounded like with the whole acoustic/strings mixture.  I’m not sure why I’m disappointed otherwise in the song since I liked it as an A-side. 

11. Mata ne.

Closing this album is one of the more pure ballads in Mata ne.  I mean it’s simplistic in the fact that it’s just acoustic guitar and Takuya singing with a bit of keyboard playing far in the background.  Sadly, that’s all it is and it’s just a waste of time even though it’s a good final track.  Let’s just get this album done with haha.

Tracks Recommended

  • Andersen
  • Smokin’ Rainy Blue
  • Ice Cream Syndrome (album ver.)
  • Sentimental Hometown

Song of Avoidance

  • Mata ne.

I’m not sure why but I don’t think Sukima Switch has grown on me enough yet to warrant a full time positioning of paying attention to their music.  They have blips of something great like the tracks I recommended but otherwise their music is kind sleep-inducing and just doesn’t have the spark of interest for me.  Might for other people though…if you like acoustic pop/rock with a little bit other things they might be your thing…but it’s not mine haha.

 

Sukima Switch – Hare Tokidoki Kumori September 17, 2011

Filed under: Sukima Switch — solarblade @ 10:11 pm

Track Listing

  1. Hare Tokidoki Kumori
  2. Ishikoro Days
  3. Gareponku (Instrumental)
  4. Hare Tokidoki Kumori (Backing Track)

1. Hare Tokidoki Kumori

As the A-side I was happy to see that they added a little more spice with this track with brass and more of a mid-tempo feel to it.  I hate to say that Takuya’s nasally style of singing does hinder the song a little bit and like “Saigo no Hi” it does drag a little bit especially passed the halfway point.  Some parts also include Shintarou singing along with Takuya and they make a great duo.  At least I remember the melody of this one unlike “Saigo no Hi”.

2. Ishikoro Days

Just seems like I’ve been enjoying the duo’s B-sides in this era and it continues with Ishikoro Days which actually has a stronger acoustic pop/rock melody and Takuya doesn’t sound as off as in the last song.  Even though it’s longer than the A-side, it’s a lot better and I felt this should’ve been the lead song since there’s so much going on in the tune.

3. Gareponku (Instrumental)

I keep finding myself weirded out by Sukima’s 2nd B-sides.  Their last one, “Human relations” was really strange and just didn’t make sense to me but this single has an instrumental with Gareponku.  Unlike the other songs on the single this feels like a beta version of a song that could be complete because there’s a melody and a chorus heard in it.  Musically, it’s just awesome and I really want this to be a vocal song in the future!

 

 

I’m not sure whether or not this single beats out “Ice Cream Syndrome” in best of the “musium” era.  I think Ishikoro Days and the instrumental, Gareponku was great songs and shows the best of the duo….Hare Tokidoki Kumori though just kind of reminds me of their last A-side…not amazing but ehhh.

 

Sukima Switch – Saigo no Hi January 26, 2011

Filed under: Sukima Switch — solarblade @ 1:16 am

Track Listing

  1. Saigo no Hi
  2. Denwaki
  3. Human relations
  4. Saigo no Hi <backing track>

1. Saigo no Hi

After “Ice Cream Syndrome” I was wondering what was gonna be next for the duo and with Saigo no Hi it seems they went for a softer route with the lead track.  Takuya’s vocals sounds really pleasant and sweet, especially when he builds up the more interesting chorus.  The thing that kind of affected me the most was the fact that it was longer than 6 minutes which means this song can have a tendency to drag (mostly in the verses though).  I guess it’s a good A-side, but I liked “Ice Cream Syndrome” quite a bit more.

2. Denwaki

I actually like the rather ethereal feel for Denwake, the first B-side on the single.  Sadly, the song is 5 minutes+ which also has this song leading more towards the forgettable side of things, but I think with the oddball arrangement and soulful vocals from Takuya, it’s a little more tolerable than “Saigo no Hi”.  Is it supposed to be the duo’s winter song?!? because it sounds like one!

3. Human relations

Really? a 9 minute song?  Well it starts with some piano playing the melody but then…I think…Takuya maybe starts talking and of course I have no idea what he’s saying so it leaves in questions for the entire thing because it’s just that.  The entire 9 minutes is just piano and Takuya talking…WHAT KIND OF CRAP IS THIS!?!

Seriously, this single was such a downgrade after “Ice Cream Syndrome” that I just don’t have any interest to listen to again.  Saigo no Hi was alright for an A-side and I’m OK with that, but Denwaki’s lack of energy and overall change and the fact Human relations is nothing but talking over a piano…it’s just a failure of a single…probably the first crappy single of 2011…

 

Sukima Switch – Ice Cream Syndrome July 2, 2010

Filed under: Sukima Switch — solarblade @ 6:00 am

Track Listing

  1. Ice Cream Syndrome
  2. Yuunagi
  3. 1017 Shousetsu no Lovesong
  4. Ice Cream Syndrome (backing track)

1. Ice Cream Syndrome

As it’s tie-in is for the upcoming Pokemon movie “Pocket Monster Diamond Pearl Genei no Hasha Zoroark”, Ice Cream Syndrome is a bit more different than I thought it’d be especially with Kuri and Shokotan’s tied tracks in the previous movies.  Unlike those two fully produced, this feels more acoustically driven and singer Takuya’s vocals are kind soothing and though sometimes he misses notes it’s a pretty song.  Yes, there’s a second member in Shintarou but he plays in the background and only comes in the chorus. 

2. Yuunagi

The first B-side, Yuunagi to me starts up kind of like a recording session a bit.  The tune’s mood is more downtrodden and a bit more retro-y for me.  To me Takuya’s vocals here are a bit more nasally which is a little bit of a turn-off, but it’s not terrible.  The chorus is kinda catchy to be honest and some of the song comes off nicely done, but nasally done.

3. 1017 Shousetsu no Lovesong

As the final B-side of the single, I thought the was the nicest one off the single.  Taking the acoustic route a bit more lighter and adding piano to the mix made things a bit different to the other two tracks.  Now Takuya’s vocals are a bit better here.  It is the single’s simplest track arrangement-wise, but it was done pretty nicely.

 

 

As my first single reviewed by Sukima Switch, Ice Cream Syndrome was pretty nice (though oddly titled if I may add.)  Both Ice Cream Syndrome and 1017 Shousetsu no Lovesong are really nice songs from the duo.  As for Yuunagi…it’ll take time because of the choice of how Takuya singing, but it’s nice nonetheless.