Kurayami Monogatari

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UVERworld – Ø CHOIR July 2, 2014

Filed under: UVERworld — solarblade @ 9:10 am

0choir

Track Listing

  1. Rei HERE ~SE~
  2. IMPACT
  3. Dare ga Itta
  4. Nano・Second (album ver.)
  5. Fight For Liberty (album ver.)
  6. ENOUGH-1
  7. KICK ga Jiyuu
  8. a LOVELY TONE (album ver.)
  9. Nanokame no Ketsui
  10. Bessekai
  11. Born Slippy
  12. Wizard CLUB
  13. Arubeki Katachi
  14. 0 choir

1. Rei HERE ~SE~

So the album begins with an introductory piece from the band and it’s an odd thing to hear a ladies voice sing (reminds of the intro of “GO-ON”) but then it turns into a rapping section with Seika playing in behind them.  It goes on til the end where the two voices (the girl and a guy) says the title of our next track….Weird opening for a 1 minute intro.

2. IMPACT

So entering the album, IMPACT starts nice we TAKUYA and some acoustic guitar and it’s actually a pretty interesting song that features some slowdown parts and some time signature changes.  It’s a really section-heavy track like “GOLD” which some could deem messy, but I think it’s one of their more easier to follow section-heavy songs.  I would say it did leave an impact on me and I’m hoping the rest of the album follows this style through!

3. Dare ga Itta

Interesting that our next track would open with TAKUYA ,Seika, and acoustic guitar.  After that the band does enter the fray and the tune gets a little more edgy and moves at a much quicker pace than the intro of the song.  Though like “IMPACT”, it’s very sectional and will more than likely throw you off but there’s parts of awesomeness and some no-so-much (like the minor piano chords that act like a transition).  It’s a good song, but I like how the previous tune sounded more.

4. Nano・Second (album ver.)

So we get to some of the previously released tracks and some of them got the album treatment.  As the 2nd single, I was surprised none of its B-sides are on here, but was surprised this tune got changes.  Sadly the thing that pulled me in, the harmonica is gone and was replaced by saxophone.  I mean it still sets up an awesome track which funny enough, the majority remained unchanged.  It’s still that awesome electrorock tune that I just loved so it’s a badass song still.  Plus I love the whole ~just do it, keep your head up~ line…Super cool!

5. Fight For Liberty (album ver.)

We get an album ver. also for the first A-side released and it has a different intro, but I think that was it because the strings remained and the overall track remains the same.  Not a big change, but a song like this didn’t need it because it’s still a great track from UVERworld.  TAKUYA still sounds powerful and it just amazes me how much style he has in songs like this.  Great song!

6. ENOUGH-1

Back to new songs, ENOUGH-1 kind of halts the album with this kind of trippy tune.  I mean you can’t be original til you use acoustic guitar, piccolo and a didgeridoo.  Though that seems to disappear when the band enters and kind of jams…It’s a pretty unique song on the album because it takes a more laidback style and TAKUYA is more rapping than singing which shows a different side.  I can get behind this a lot…very refreshing after the previous 4 songs.

7. KICK ga Jiyuu

The intro of our next song starts off shaky as they mess up and then really gets it started.  After “ENOUGH-1” this acts to kind of bring it back slowly and I admire something that if it wasn’t for the next couple tracks lol.  I would actually say this is a bit straightforward and slightly poppy for me until the drive gets a little more punch.  Not bad, not bad.

8. a LOVELY TONE (album ver.)

So we get an album version of the B-side from “Fight For Liberty/Wizard CLUB” and instead of that guitar/synth mix…the intro is done by Seika.  I have to say I REALLY like the change to that since it adds a little more of that sensual glow.  TAKUYA’s voice is light and more controlled but then again it didn’t sound like the tune change otherwise.  At least it’s not as bad as I was going to expect.

9. Nanokame no Ketsui

Sadly I wish there was changes for this song.  Even though it’s been out a few weeks, I still am not all that interested in this song.  On the album, it is a bit more louder than “a LOVELY TONE” but it’s goddamn long at 7 minutes.  Plus we’ve already had clapping beats in the last track, so I’m just kind of like why is this placed here.  I’m just not interested in this one sorry lol.

10. Bessekai

Which baffles me more when we see the B-side from that single makes the album cut once again coming after the A-side.  Bessekai if you don’t know is an instrumental and little lyrical content.  It acts somewhat as the interlude of the album which is cool I suppose.  I mean I still like the sound of the band and throwing in that dubstep was actually working here.  Still, I can’t help but feel like this didn’t really belong and it’s a tad long for an interlude…so meh.

11. Born Slippy

NO…they didn’t?!?  Really UVER?  If you guys don’t know, this is actually a cover of a classic 90’s electro song from Underworld (oh, I see the semblance)…  I had thoughts that this was that particular song, but couldn’t think of why.  It kind of tries to be faithful by having it somewhat sound like its original, but the band also fills in the sound which is an interesting take.  TAKUYA though…ehhhhh his English here (which is all of it) is kind of hit and miss and funny to listen to.  There’s some genius moments like the acoustic part and the edgier parts.  UVER did changed some parts to make it less long?  It’s a very out there cover for the band, but I like the risk they did even if it did have some iffy parts.

12. Wizard CLUB

The only A-side that got no changes huh?  Wizard CLUB was such a fun track to listen to andI’m glad that at least they didn’t touch this one.  It’s a wild song and Seika was already in front row on this one.  Like “IMPACE” and “Dare ga Itta” it’s pretty section friendly, but it’s pretty straightforward and TAKUYA gave a fun performance and I still love the sort of Street Fighter passage in the song a lot haha.  Fun song from the band and happy it made the cut!

13. Arubeki Katachi

As we get into the last two songs, we get Arubeki Katachi first and this seems like it’s another rock staple from the group but it has an upbeat nature due to the bright piano chords playing along the speedy tempo of the track.  It reminds me somewhat of their classic anime themes (round their debut era).  It’s a pretty neat song and stands nicely on the album.

14. 0 choir

Then we end the album with the title track and I was wondering how’d they end the album and it’s heavy track.  It kind of reminds me of how “IMPACT” hit the beginning of the album so the full circle is kind of cool to me.  It does have more synths here which works for sure.  After a while it kind of drags for me which dulls my enjoyment, but it works for a final track.

Tracks Recommended

  • NanoSecond (album ver.)
  • IMPACT
  • Arubeki Katachi
  • ENOUGH-1
  • Wizard CLUB

Song of Avoidance

  • Bessekai

Wow that was actually a pretty good album for what it is.  UVERworld’s 8th album, Ø CHOIR might be one of my favorites, possibly even over “LAST” in how this album worked.  I thought Seika made a great impression here (than on the last two albums) and most of the songs were pretty awesome from them.  The only songs I was really not head over heels was basically the songs that came from Nanokame no Ketsui…both didn’t seem to fit IMO.  Still this album is a *RECOMMENDED*

 

UVERworld – Nanokame no Ketsui June 18, 2014

Filed under: UVERworld — solarblade @ 8:12 pm

nanokamenoketsui

Track Listing

  1. Nanokame no Ketsui
  2. Bessekai
  3. Nanokame no Ketsui (Instrumental)
  4. Nanokame no Ketsui (2013.11.9 Voice Memo)

1. Nanokame no Ketsui

I’ll be honest, it takes a good UVERworld mid-tempo to make me enjoy it and in recent times, the band has made good strides towards it.  However, when it comes to Nanokame no Ketsui…it’s way too long.  Being a 7 minute struggle, this song kind of just slightly bored me throughout.  Though the boom/clap beat with the acoustic guitar is an interesting touch and TAKUYA of course singing the way he always does sounds good, but after 3 minutes, it just killed me and I tuned out.  I thought the group would’ve celebrated the fact that their saxophone player, SEIKA had officially become a member of UVERworld…wasn’t expecting this in the least.

2. Bessekai

Then the B-sides happens and I felt like this song was to have SEIKA mesh into the band.  Funny enough this song is really the band having fun and utilizing all their styles into this kind of rock/dubstep rock session.  I’m loving the ideas but as a B-side that doesn’t have lyrical content, it makes this single feel bare.  Not bad though and an interesting listen.

4. Nanokame no Ketsui (2013.11.9 Voice Memo)

After the instrumental of the A-side, we get this 50 second track and I was curious to what this was all about.   It seems it’s just a short excerpt of the song performed of only TAKUYA and some acoustic guitar (wonder if he’s playing it…).  Despite the low quality of it, it’s a nice bonus I suppose lol.

 

 

As the 3rd and last single before their album, “Ø CHOIR”, Nanokame no Ketsui marks the first single with a new member in the band and I wasn’t expecting them to just slide by and release a 7 minute borefest.  It’s way too long for me and dragged a lot.  Bessekai is OK, nothing unique, but the jamming experimenting without lyrics.  Strange that it’ll be on the album though with no changes >.>.  Of course the little bonus track is nice, but eh…Hope the album will turn out great!

 

UVERworld – Nano・Second February 4, 2014

Filed under: UVERworld — solarblade @ 12:15 pm

nanosecond

Track Listing

  1. Nano・Second
  2. LIFE
  3. DEJAVU

1. Nano・Second

Hm? Harmonica and synth intro?  Can’t say that isn’t original and I thought that did well setting up the song sort of.  I wasn’t expecting the track to be focused more on synths as TAKUYA begun under auto-tune before the track turned into a electrorock track.  I enjoy the changes and the band is still very explosive and energetic and suits the electronic beats.  I just found myself jamming out to this and it’s really one of the band’s more unique songs in their discography!  AWESOME!

2. LIFE

As the band goes back into something they’re more used to, LIFE is heavy and very UVERworld as it has the normal things going on like TAKUYA’s pseudo speak/rapping, soft bridges, and then an explosive chorus.  I think as a song, it’s a little basic and there’s many other UVER songs that have done the same with better results…but this isn’t bad at all.

3. DEJAVU

Another synth-heavy track?  Well, at least we’re not given another track that’s just a glorified medley.  DEJAVU already from the beginning won me over faster than “LIFE” with more energy and the saxes return as well, but they aren’t a prominent feature as past songs have used it for.  I love the synth parts, I can’t lie and I tend to already love UVER’s heavy songs and this was a nice enough change to the formula…SWEEEET!

 

 

I’m just loving UVERworld ever since the “LIFE 9 SENSE” era ended…it’s like their chest of ideas burst open and they’ve been releasing pretty good A-sides since!  The whole harmonica/electro mix out of Nano・Second just caught me off guard but it was SO GOOD as one!  I hope they do more of this in the future.  DEJAVU took the synths and expanded it further by mixing it with just the band and I loved it as well.  LIFE is good, but it’s the typical UVER song they would release and I probably won’t remember the melody after this review.  Still great single!

 

UVERworld – Fight For Liberty/Wizard CLUB September 9, 2013

Filed under: UVERworld — solarblade @ 10:46 am

fightforliberty

Track Listing

  1. Fight For Liberty
  2. Wizard CLUB
  3. a LOVING TONE
  4. Fight For Liberty (TV Size)

1. Fight For Liberty

I thought it was due for UVERworld to come back and they come back with Fight For Liberty and honestly, I was loving they traded them saxophones from the last few singles and placed some strings and piano alongside their rockin’ style.  TAKUYA’s vocals really seem to stand out more to me than before and working with the whole anison sound around that was a smart move.  Definitely a great song from them a good start to the era.

2. Wizard CLUB

The other A-side, feels like the group is doing a bit more experimenting with the saxophones returning but with some trippy time sig changes which makes the song a bit more wild and random sounding.  There’s just so many different things happening in the song that it baffles me how they came up with such a unique track.  I actually kind of admire the songs approach and was glad it’s at A-side status.  That bridge though…why did I think of Street Fighter XD.

3. a LOVING TONE

I’m going to be honest, I’m happy we’re getting a straightforward song as the B-side and not some random instrumental or medley this time around.  Unlike the previous two, this track takes the band in a more mellow direction and TAKUYA can at least relax his voice for this song.  Though the song actually doesn’t bore me like some of their previous slow jams.  It’s strange considering the previous two tracks, but this song did a nice job closing the single.

 

 

After taking a rather small break after “REVERSI”, they came back at full force with “Fight For Liberty/Wizard CLUB”!  The primary A-side is your typical UVER rock track of course and they tackled the song quite nicely, not as good as “GOLD” or “GO-ON” but impressive.  Wizard CLUB on the other hand represented more of the experimentive side of UVERworld of recent times and strangely enough, I enjoyed it very much.  a LOVING TONE is a bit random to come across, but as an UVER ballad, it won me over pretty quickly.  I’d say this is a great single for them!

 

UVERworld – REVERSI December 27, 2012

Filed under: UVERworld — solarblade @ 12:34 am

reversi

Track Listing

  1. REVERSI
  2. Theory to no Ketsumetsu no Kenkyuu+81
  3. ace of ace (LIVE at Yokohama Arena 2012.07.08)
  4. CORE PRIDE (LIVE at ZEPP TOKYO 2011.07.27)

1. REVERSI

As you may have already known, REVERSI is a recut song from their recent release, “THE ONE” and it was released because it’s tied to the Ao no Exorcist series.  Like I’ve said on that review, this song was great and hearing UVERworld mix synths up with their already powerful rock sound is always a great pleasure to listen to.  Definitely a solid track from the band and I’m happy they chose this to act as a recut.

2. Theory to no Ketsumetsu no Kenkyuu+81

Hm?  I’m instantly reminding my self when I saw the title of this to be similar to “Choutaisaku+81” which was the B-side from “NO.1”.  As I highly expected, it’s a lot like that song because it’s a mesh of various UVERworld songs which might impress a few, but to people that wanted a new song they aren’t getting here.  Though in the middle there’s a conversation going on (anime-related?).  It’s really strange and some songs are spruced in here and there, but Istill wonder what the point of it all was.

3. ace of ace (LIVE at Yokohama Arena 2012.07.08)

The rest of the singles are live cuts of their past songs, the first is ace of ace from their album, “LIFE 6 SENSE”.  It’s still a strange song when I listen to it, but the energy the band and TAKUYA give off is extreme and it’s really awesome to see them pull of like this.  Definitely surprising to hear and they pulled it off in a big way!, Plus the crowd there was definitely helping out as well lol!

4. CORE PRIDE (LIVE at ZEPP TOKYO 2011.07.27)

The other is their other Ao no Exorcist track, CORE PRIDE and this was the one with the major use of saxophones, but I thought they handled this song better, but the audience weren’t as heard like in “ace of ace”.  Straightforward performance, but still good nonetheless!

 

 

Even though this single was really unnecessary, REVERSI was a pretty solid choice to have been re-used for a single.  Finally closing “THE ONE” up, this single was good for the most part.  Main track is awesome, the live versions are pretty good and while Theory+81 is random and nonsensical, it did fit the single.  Overall, a pretty strong single.

 

UVERworld – THE ONE December 1, 2012

Filed under: UVERworld — solarblade @ 5:34 am

Track Listing

  1. THE ONE (SE)
  2. 7th Trigger
  3. Don’t Think. Feel
  4. LIMITLESS
  5. 23 Word
  6. KINJITO (LIVE intro ver.)
  7. THE OVER
  8. Koko Kara
  9. REVERSI
  10. Barbell ~Koutei no Atarashii Fuku album ver.~
  11. BABY BORN & GO
  12. AWAYOKUBA-Kiru (LIVE intro ver.)
  13. NOWHERE boy

1. THE ONE (SE)

The album opens up with a short intro and boy was it a bit random.  It starts with this woman ad-libbing before howling out ~UVERWWOOOOOOORLD~ and then a short synth passage with beats jump in and it just ends.  Like I said, random intro for sure!

2. 7th Trigger

At least the intro slides into 7th Trigger quite smoothly ^_^.  As the band’s 2nd A-side for the album, I still pretty much love the hell out of 7th Trigger!  It was back to form, none of the weird experimentation that UVERworld was doing with the saxophones.  Just TAKUYA and the rest of the band!  It was cool and just rockin’ on all accounts.  Though I still think the whistling is a bit out of place, but still this song was great!

3. Don’t Think. Feel

Going into our first new track, Don’t Think. Feel kind of feels like it’s wanting to be another “7th Trigger” because it has the same kind of idea going on in the arrangement but this is a bit random with the synthesizers.  It’s like this song is trying to be the “GOLD” of the album and I respect that choice since they seem to impress me with those kind of songs.  It’s not bad, but the electronic stuff could’ve been toned down a little bit.

4. LIMITLESS

Well, it seems the saxophones made a return with LIMITLESS which while I like hearing them, they seemed a bit out of place with how much electronics and acoustic guitar lines…it was a free-for-all for the band here which is meaning…it was a little bit messy.  I tried to enjoy this like I did with the previous track, but this was more annoying overall of a song.

5. 23 Word

It just seems to continue to be weird when 23 Word starts up.  At first with the intro, I was expecting another “LIMITLESS” but the arrangement shifts to a more mid-tempo affair.  I have to say that I like hearing TAKUYA doing some rapping against shakuhachis XD.  Also the saxes appear but they aren’t as bold as they were in the previous track either.  This is actually a pretty cool track to chill out to…it’s very laidback and turned out very nicely for the band!

6. KINJITO (LIVE intro ver.)

Moving onto the secondary A-side from the first single released, KINJITO got edited for the album, but it’s a minor switch (well it’s a lot different, but the song is really only a couple seconds longer than the original).  The thing that impressed me the most is that the intro is a lot cooler and less quiet with the extra synths added in.  The added synths give the track a bit more life and it seems I really liked the changes (despite loving the track anyways from before the album) this jumped above and beyond for me.  Great song!!!

7. THE OVER

I’m just surprised that something as bombastic like “KINJITO” is before something like THE OVER because they are polar opposites in styles.  As the final A-side before the album’s release, THE OVER might be serious, but it’s a nice track from them because it’s handled a lot better than older ballads of theirs.  Not much else I can say, but this is nice.

8. Koko Kara

LOL TAKUYA’s intro monologue is kind of hilarious XD.  This track at first sounds so experimentive because of the blowing and the kind of beat-boxing that was going on.  Beyond that, the song doesn’t really do much for me and the melody doesn’t stick onto to me very well.  Though when the strings solo section happens, it turns the song into a quirky little thing.  It’s different, I can admit to that, but it still doesn’t save the song entirely.

9. REVERSI

As the song that’s going to be re-released (the album’s re-cut single), REVERSI had a lot to impress me on since it’s tied to Ao no Exorcist (and I LOVE the music from series).  Hearing TAKUYA under filters was quite cool and then hearing a more synth-heavy background mixing it up with UVERworld’s sound is really epic.  This song just has a lot of elements in it and stood out on the album!  Even though I’m roughly reviewing it again in a couple of weeks, this song was a great choice to be re-cut!!!

10. Barbell ~Koutei no Atarashii Fuku album ver.~

I knew that when I reviewed “7th Trigger” this B-side would make the cut because of the title of the song from the single kind of preceded that it would somehow get a new version on THE ONE.  I loved the single version a whole lot and was curious to what would be brought on the album.  For the most part, Barbell doesn’t seem to have gone through any changes at all!  There probably is but they’re quite miniscule.  Still a pretty badass song and I’m ecstatic to see it on the album!

11. BABY BORN & GO

I don’t know why but BABY BORN & GO never really impressed me much (probably because I initially thought this and “KINJITO” belonged on “LIFE 6 SENSE” more than on the current album).  As time went by, I enjoyed the latter track a lot more and BABY BORN & GO kind of fell behind and stopped being impressive.  This song though does have the most saxophone lines which probably bothered me the most.  It’s good that UVERworld wants to go back to the Sangaku Road days…but this is not cutting it.

12. AWAYOKUBA-Kiru (LIVE intro ver.)

As the other B-side from “7th Trigger” appears, I was elated to see the entire single because it was such an amazing single from them!  Then I look at the changes made and the original which clocked in at 4:35 is now 7:39 on the album.  Given that the song is going by the live version, the biggest change is the intro which has a LONG strings passage before the song comes into fruition.  To be honest the 3:04 seconds of strings was totally unecessary and UVERworld could’ve easily made this a seperate track (like an interlude) because AWAYOKUBA-Kiru itself didn’t really change much on the album IF ANY AT ALL.  The song itself is pretty damn good with a piano-heavy instrumentation tagged with the band giving this elegant, but powerful feel.  If it wasn’t for that god long intro, this would’ve ranked a lot higher on the album for me, stick to the original B-side.

13. NOWHERE Boy

Finally, the album closes out with NOWHERE Boy, the final new track from the album.  After dealing with the long track beforehand, I was curious to what they were going to finish up with and NOWHERE Boy sounds just as laidback and chill like “23 Word” which is nice and all, but not what I was expecting UVERworld to close the album with.  Still it’s nice and not really blaaah.

Tracks Recommended

  • 7th Trigger
  • KINJITO (LIVE intro ver.)
  • Barbell ~Koutei no Atarashii Fuku album ver.~
  • REVERSI
  • 23 Word

Song of Avoidance

  • BABY BORN & GO

I’m not sure what to think, but this is definitely not THE ONE for UVERworld.  In a way, it felt like it was the total opposite to “LIFE 6 SENSE” where most of the album was experimenting with different things and styles.  THE ONE had a lot of winners which does make this better than said album but I think if they had handled some of the songs better (and got rid of the horrid long intro for AWAYOKUBA-Kiru), this album would’ve been a great one…but as it stands it’s good overall.

 

UVERworld – THE OVER August 29, 2012

Filed under: UVERworld — solarblade @ 8:31 am

Track Listing

  1. THE OVER
  2. THE SONG
  3. Massive

1. THE OVER

It’s been a while since UVER has done a ballad track and it returns in form with THE OVER.  I like how it builds into the chorus which is pure rock and TAKUYA singing in his normal style.  Personally, this song is probably my favorite ballad/rock song I’ve heard since I started to review them so it’s pretty good on that level.

2. THE SONG

We have a song titled”THE OVER” and now we have THE SONG which is kind of in the same area of arrangement is kind of a little blah for me but the chorus is less powerful and IMO, it’s kind of worse because TAKUYA’s singing is rather bland and kind of lacks note movement so it’s a bit tedious.  It’s alright, but I just don’t find it to be amongst their good B-sides.

3. Massive

A bongo drum intro for a song called Massive?  Yeah, I don’t get it either, but this song is kind of unique.  Unfortunately, the more deeper I go the more obvious it becomes fact that Massive is just merely a instrumental track for the band.  I guess it’s nice that they have something like this but I kind of wanted more than what we ended up with.

 

 

I’ve kind of been losing interest with UVERworld in recent times but they brought back with “7th Trigger”.  With THE OVER they kind of continued since I did end up liking the lead song the most.  THE SONG has quite a few problems going on and it’s just too meh.  Also, I would’ve preferred if Massive was a full vocal track because the instrumental sounds really nice and it could’ve worked with TAKUYA to be honest.  Definitely a downgrade from their last single.