- WE ARE (Album version)
- ever snow
- Mugen no Hikari
- “termination” (Album version)
- Aoi Shoudou ~SF Cyborg Trance Mix~
- North Wind
- BABY, BABY GIMME YOUR LOVE (Cyber Electronica R+B Mix)
- Seinaru Kane ga, Narihibiku Machi
- ESCAPE TO THE SKY★彡 (Album version)
- Dance Dance Revolution feat. TЁЯRA Non-Stop Megamix
1. WE ARE (Album version)
Opening the album, we have WE ARE (and before you ask, I wouldn’t know the differences between album versions beyond they might be more full and not short versions). While I’ve known the duo to be well-known for their dance tracks, WE ARE is actually more natural and has a pop/rock kind of tone mixed in with some slight anison sparks. I do like the arrangement, but it does seem to cover up jun’s vocals a bit. Still not a bad way to kick things off!
2. ever snow
Now this is more along the lines of what I know of TЁЯRA in which it’s in a more trancier style. Being as this is the duo’s first album, it’s got a certain classic style to it (almost akin to Daisuke Asakura’s stuff). I do enjoy the lighter trance vibes and it suits jun’s vocals a lot more than “WE ARE” did. Nice track overall!
Seems we return to the kind of rockin’ atmosphere of the beginning but it mixes a lot more with the dance beats of the 2nd track. I don’t think the song really picks up very much and the chorus is a little disappointing, but I think jun’s vocals are still quite calming and yet nice to listen to. I just don’t think much of the song (and it’s the shortest of the album barely clocking 3 minutes.
4. Mugen no Hikari
I’m loving the introduction to our next track and really sounds beautiful, mixing in traditional Japanese instruments alongside Naoki Maeda’s composition of the song, with the slight dance vibes. It’s a pretty song and jun once again suits the lighter tone of the track. It sounds like it could’ve been a prologue to their later song “Hana Ranman -Flowers-“. It could’ve used more oomph, but it’s a solid song overall!
Seems we would get another electronica song just by going how the way the title is written huh? I’m really enjoying this steady grow of the song and the chorus has a strong anison feel to it which helps out for jun’s higher register here. I love the floaty atmosphere of the arrangement from Naoki and the whole presentation, definitely an early favorite on the album!
6. “termination” (Album version)
Like with “ever snow” and “STARS☆☆☆”, “termination” definitely reminds me of some early Daisuke Asakura, especially with the mixture of keyboards and guitars, but instead of a guy singing it’s jun…oh yeah, throw in some random amounts of saxophone too! It kind of grew on me after a while and the parts with the sax, adds some spice to the arrangement, overall it’s decent.
7. Aoi Shoudou ~SF Cyborg Trance Mix~
Of all the tracks so far, this definitely sounds like the TЁЯRA I came to know. Being a 7 minute fest of electronics, Aoi Shoudou does start up a bit slow before jun enters the fray and her voice just oozes in and out of the synths and I’m loving that soooo much! It’s got a similar floatyness like “ULTiMΛTE” but more appropriate for clubs and raves hahah. I really like this track though and it sticks out on the album!
Oh hey another song that sounds like it’d fit home with DDR songs. Unlike the previous songs, we actually hit a more cuter song from the duo and it’s mostly apparant through jun’s cutesy vocals. While I’m unsure how I feel about them, the song keeps up and yet continues to feel like an upbeat Asakura song. I’m just on the fence with this one.
Sounds like things get back to normal with our next track. Focusing on more of the guitarwork this time, I’m loving the verses a lot as it builds up quite a bit to a strong chorus. It might get lost amongst the other guitar-ridden songs on here, but it’s not a poor track.
10. North Wind
Oh hey, another “ever snow” huh? Well, I’m fine with that, but it seems like we’re getting another song that’s quite similar to other tracks on the album which is starting to show some of the problems. I’m actually having issues trying to remember this one as emotionally feels flat and while jun tries to make it a good performance, it lacks all over…not my favorite for sure.
11. BABY, BABY GIMME YOUR LOVE (Cyber Electronica R+B Mix)
Then comes this oddball, being the longest track of the bunch (over 9 minutes). I wasn’t sure what to think of the track, but it definitely is another track that sticks out amongst the rest beyond its length. I wasn’t expecting this song to mix electronica and R&B (and have backup singers). While I don’t like the length much, the song is pretty damn cool and jun can handle this style of music so smoothly…surprised me a lot…cool track!
Now this song sounds like a DDR song for sure. It’s got a lot of synths and holds a darker image vs. other songs on the album and I feel like jun is pushing her vocals a bit more than other songs like “North Wind”. I definitely was surprised it was on this album and after “BABY, BABY GIMME YOUR LOVE” this was a nice pull back down. It might not stretch musically on this album, but it’s one of the better tracks!
13. Seinaru Kane ga, Narihibiku Machi
Then things hit a wall with our next track and honestly, I wasn’t expecting a ballad of all things to pop up (though we are nearing the end of the album). What doesn’t work is that it feels like a cheesy 90’s ballad with the keyboard and chords. It’s a bit strange, not going to lie, but there’s something slightly charming about jun’s vocals. I would say it’s definitely jun’s strongest song vocally, but the arrangement is odd, but simple.
14. ESCAPE TO THE SKY★彡 (Album version)
Closing the album, ESCAPE TO THE SKY I thought was going to be poppy and floaty like “ULTiMΛTE”, but this song is upbeat and rockin’ which is so good and if jun was going to pull off cute, this is how I would’ve preferred her to be! It’s energetic and everything just felt right and made a strong closing (I mean it could have been between this and “Seinaru Kane ga, Narihibiku Machi”). Great way to close things off!
1. Dance Dance Revolution feat. TЁЯRA Non-Stop Megamix
The 2nd disc is actually just a long track of all of the songs from this song given their shortened versions from the game and it’s really funny because the opening starts off like you’re playing DDR by choosing one of the songs. It’s definitely nice that this happened and it’s a pretty good megamix to get into the duo!
- Aoi Shoudou ~SF Cyber Trance Mix~
- ESCAPE TO THE SKY★彡 (Album version)
- ever snow
Song of Avoidance
- North Wind
Being as this is an album that was released back in 2005 (before I got into J-pop), I was definitely in the know of the DDR series (not so much the other Bemani games), but I knew DDR was known for their beat-centric dance genre so when I found out there was a group that focused mostly on the DDR games, I jumped on and wanted to see what TЁЯRA was all about. Their debut album, RЁVOLUTIФN, was not bad actually. Yeah, some of the songs sound dated and some were meh, but they had a lot of interesting ideas going on and jun is a decent singer…it’s just sad that it would take 6 years before the group would release their sophomore album >.>