Kurayami Monogatari

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Aya Ueto – Smile for…/Mou Ichido Dake June 26, 2009

Filed under: Aya Ueto — solarblade @ 2:35 pm
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smilefor

Track Listing

  1. Smile for…
  2. Mou Ichido Dake
  3. Smile for… (instrumental)
  4. Mou Ichido Dake (instrumental)

1. Smile for…

It’s been a while since Aya released anything for a while and I was oddly surprised the song sounded pretty idol-like with it’s overly pop-like nature and the small quips of electric guitar.  I’m pretty turned off by the fact that Aya went this direction to be using all these terrible idol-like sounds, all those yelps and ~YEAHS~ do not make a song any good IMO, and sort of detracts from the song itself.  I haven’t heard her stuff before this era, but I know that “way to heaven” is leagues better.  Sad, sad song.

2. Mou Ichido Dake

However, I was happy with the B-side which was a ballad.  Aya did a way better job sounding together and keeping herself sweet and nicely emotional throughout.  It’s still a little bit a little bit typical of a ballad with a piano + strings arrangement.  It can become a little bland after a while, but it’s still a good ballad.

 

 

Ok, I guess two years has messed her up a little bit, Smile for… was just too idolly for me and I thought she was over that crap for sure, but I guess not and I quickly got annoyed with it.  Mou Ichido Dake was an alright ballad, even though it’s not too much…Seems like Aya can’t get a super song out of the era…Can’t tell which is the worst one of the era.

 

Aya Ueto – Namida no Niji/SAVE ME June 6, 2009

Filed under: Aya Ueto — solarblade @ 11:47 am
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namidanoniji

Track Listing

  1. Namida no Niji
  2. SAVE ME
  3. way to heaven ~100db mix~
  4. Namida no Niji -Instrumental-
  5. SAVE ME -Instrumental-

1. Namida no Niji

Namida no Niji begins the single off pretty awesomely.  Unlike the uber poppy “way to heaven”, this track is actually a ballad of all things and we get to hear more of a softer side to Aya.  The music is really nice mainly filled with strings and piano and drums.  I thought it was done pretty nicely.  Aya’s vocals however doesn’t well here as they sound a bit off the note most of the time.  It’s alright, nothing too special.

2. SAVE ME

At first, I thought SAVE ME was also a ballad, but it’s actually a rock/pop track which also brings out the better Aya as her vocals are more solid this time around.  Her high notes are a different story though LOL.  Still as I look deeper in the song, it features the same instruments as the last track except with the addition of guitar and bass.  So when it really came down to it, this tops the primary A-side.

3. way to heaven ~100db mix~

I’m not gonna question this, but way to heaven actually got itself a remix.  I really didn’t know what they could do with a remix of a girly pop song, but yet here it is.  Instead of the previous sounds, it’s heavy on the synths and Aya’s vocals and singing are messed around with a lot.  There’s just more music going on instead of Aya singing.  Even then it doesn’t fit in this single at all.  Not so good.

 

 

Aya’s 2nd of the era, Namida no Niji/SAVE ME was a step down from the last single.  First off Namida no Niji was just not that good of a track from here and she’s had better ballads I bet.  SAVE ME was a bit better, and it had a good punch to it, so easily it’s the best.  The remix was just so out-of-place on the single and even then it was a very messy remix at that.  I hope this hiatus has gotten her to make awesome songs.

 

Aya Ueto – way to heaven May 4, 2009

Filed under: Aya Ueto — solarblade @ 7:13 pm
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waytoheaven

Track Listing

  1. way to heaven
  2. Owari ni Shou
  3. Shimokita Ijou Harajuku Miman (French Bossa Version)
  4. way to heaven ~Instrumental~

1. way to heaven

This is so very surprising.  When I first heard of Aya Ueto, she was this kickass chick with a sword.  Then I got into her single, this way just jaw-dropping and definitly something I wouldn’t have though she’d do at all.  It’s very upbeat and poppy.  Aya’s vocals are pretty expressive, even though they aren’t the better vocals.  There’s a little bit of a jazz influence as well which is pretty cool.  Other than that, I feel like she’s had way better tracks.

2. Owari ni Shou

Owari ni Shou on the other hand, definitly reminds me of something from the Final Fantasy series.  It starts out dark with low thumps and not a lot on the arrangement.  Then Aya comes in and radiates the song a lot which is so nice.  I liked her a lot more singing in this song than in “way to heaven”.  It’s something I love to hear in a ballad and is quickly becoming something I really enjoy.

3. Shimokita Ijou Harajuku Miman (French Bossa Version)

So this track is a bunch of things.  First, it’s a cover of a track that Aya was on and second it’s a remix of the song she covered back on her Best-of.  Now since that’s outta the way.  Shimokita Ijou Harajuku Miman here is a lot more calming than the other songs which is cool.  It’s light bossa nova sound is just what this song needed IMO and Aya’s calm vocals are sweet and cute at the sane time.  DAMN, so good.

 

 

Aya Ueto’s first single for a new era was surprising in many ways.  way to heaven showed off her poppy side in full fashion and surprised me a lot.  Owari ni Shou took the cake for being such a moving ballad and yet containing some darker undertones in it.  The remix however was just the thing I needed and is an awesome touch to the single!!!

 

Aya Hirano – Set me free/Sing a Song! April 26, 2009

Filed under: Aya Hirano — solarblade @ 7:25 pm
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set-me-free

Track Listing

  1. Set me free
  2. Sing a Song!
  3. Set me free (Off Vocal)
  4. Sing a Song! (Off Vocal)

1. Set me free

Set me free reminds me of Shokotan’s “Sorairo Days”.  When I mean that it’s because both songs are definitly rock songs and shows off the artists wild side.  I gotta say, Aya sounds pretty hardcore with the song and hearing the weird 2nd verse…this song sounds so much more memorable than “Namida NAMIDA Namida”.  Pretty nifty!

2. Sing a Song!

And no, It’s not a cover of Eri’s great dance track.  The song continues the rock sound, but it’s a bit more controlled, except for Aya’s singing she’s definitly singing out and until the chorus, the music gets as wild as the singing.  Sadly, since it’s an A-side and after “Set me free” this comes as a bit disappointing as it doesn’t seperate itself as an A-side

 

 

Set me free/Sing a Song! is actually a smidge of a downgrade when compared to last single “Namida NAMIDA Namida”  Both songs just sound similar to one another and I found myself missing Aya working with Tsunku surprisingly.  I think this single would’ve been better with an B-side added on as well…I don’t know it’s just not that good.

 

Aya Hirano – Namida NAMIDA Namida October 6, 2008

Filed under: Aya Hirano — solarblade @ 4:52 am
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Namida_Namida_Namida

Track Listing

  1. Namida NAMIDA Namida
  2. WIN
  3. Namida NAMIDA Namida (Off Vocal)
  4. WIN (Off Vocal)

1. Namida NAMIDA Namida

Reading that Tsunku had a part of this track, I was pleasantly surprised at how the song worked.  It’s a pop track with a lot of synth in it.  Definitly reminds me of Nami Tamaki’s stuff.  Aya sounds pretty good and as a step up from her debut album, this track chose a good direction to go and not be stuck in the Seiyuu crap.  So I praise on her energy and her vocals.

2. WIN

WIN is like the previous track almost, but it leans more on the rock territory.  Somehow, this whole dance pop/rock hybrid actually works.  The guitar solo totally rules the song and Aya being really great with her vocals actually made this song WIN LOL….I hope she continues with tracks, but you can obviously tell this is Tsunku’s work.

 

 

Aya’s 1st single of the era, is awesome at most.  I mean even though both songs are Tsunku’s work, she really fits in with the whole pop/rock perspective.  I mean the A-Side is actually very catchy as well as the B-side, I hope both do make the album cut. 

 

Aya Hirano – RIOT GIRL July 16, 2008

Filed under: Aya Hirano — solarblade @ 5:14 am
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Track Listing

  1. LOVE★GUN
  2. HERO
  3. MonStAR
  4. Ashita no Prism
  5. Breakthrough (Album Ver.)
  6. Bouken Desho Desho?
  7. Aimai Scream
  8. Yorokobi no Uta
  9. Maybe i can’t good-bye
  10. NEOPHILIA
  11. Harmonia Vita
  12. For you
  13. Hoshi no Kakera
  14. RIOT GIRL

1. LOVE★GUN

We kickstart this awesome album with this rock track.  Aya goes through many different voices and this is her uncontrolled voice.  It fits with the wild track.  Some of it reminds me of like Final Fantasy battle themes for some odd reason.  I think she’s putting punk princess down as things she can do right.

2. HERO

Continuing with the pop/punk rock sound, HERO is definitly calmer than the previous track.  I kind of dislike this track because it’s just lifeless musically, like it’s stuff we’ve heard before so it’s pretty much a filler track.  Dang, already we have our filler track *sigh*

3. MonStAR

A piano intro starts off with this punk/synth track.  I found myself really enjoying the synth of the song.  The chorus really kills Aya’s voice talent in this song. Why?  She’s so nasally in it, it’s almost terrible.  Though the verses were very good.  Depends on your mood to which if you like the song or not.

4. Ashita no Prism

OMG, I thought of Nami Tamaki from that guitar solo in the beginning.  This pop/rock song was a single also and it was a good choice to do that.  Aya’s voice still seems off, however but it’s more like Nana Kitade’s voice in this song.  So I wasn’t too bothered with her this time.

5. Breakthrough (Album Ver.)

Ska?  That’s the feeling I’m getting from the song.  The whole carefree sound with brass adding excitement, surprised me alot.  I haven’t heard the single version, but I don’t think it can surpass this.  It’s fun, poppy, full of life and just cute.  Aya doesn’t sound quite as bad either!

6. Bouken Desho Desho?

I kinda thought it as gonna be a dark track hence the church bell.  I was surprised it turned into this pop tune that’s sugary cute.  The chorus is so catchy, I’d just sing along with it.  Another single right here.  Still it’s a bit too sugary and Aya is in her “cute” sound.  Which I like sorta XD

7. Aimai Scream

Ick, she’s combined her cute vocals with the synth stuff and they don’t mix well together.  Not my kind of tune either, it sounds like something you’d hear in “Doraemon” or something like that.  I wished it was better performed.

8. Yorokobi no Uta

A rock ballad?  Hey, it also introduces to a new sound from Aya, her deep voice sounds real good, like almost better than Ayumi good.  This is where the album steps up and gets good too.  Yorokobi no Uta is a good track with the instrumentation.  Aya thank you!

9. Maybe i can’t good-bye

Hard rock is pulsing in this track.  Aya sounds really creepy with her steady vibrato and strong vocals.  The beginning guitar sounds sounded like Blur’s “Song 2” which is one of my favorite rock tracks to begin with.  I think Aya should go in this direction and not the poppy side.  The chorus is so hard and so cool.  Kudos to the drummer too, those was some good beats right there.

10. NEOPHILIA

Strange opening, though she gets more darker entering this track.  I’m starting to notice that there’s two different Aya’s pop princess & rock queen…sound familiar, how about Tommy February6 and Tommy Heavenly6?  Yeah this is how it’s changing to.  Aya still sounds very awesome, holding her ground.

11. Harmonia Vita

Ok, this is like Ayu’s “Marionette”.  It’s the darkest, evilest track on this album.  This has some of the hardest sounding guitars and bass it’s awesome.  Aya, going through both her lower and higher register creates a dark theme, just like “Marionette” they might be sister songs, I swear.  Best song on this album.

12. For you

As we lighten the mood up, For you goes back to the pop/rock sounds from earlier.  I think the drums in the chorus was a bit overbearing, however Aya still manages to overcome that factor and doesn’t overkill her voice.  However, I’m reminded of misono’s work as well…the overall song just sounds one on the same.

13. Hoshi no Kakera

The main ballad of the album, is kinda of a cute song.  with Aya using her normal tone.  She sounds so beautiful in this song and can be easily be a tie-in to an ending of a anime easily.  There is power to the song mostly in the chorus which prevented it from getting to boring.  The twinkling sounds also made this song worthwhile.

14. RIOT GIRL

The title track is the final track as well?  The beginning was so catchy then it’s led to this crazy rock song.  Aya ruins this song as well by using her “Uncontrollable” voice.  The bridge was pretty awesome and had a good pace to it.  The chorus is a little too weird for me.  I think she should’ve put this song somewhere in the middle of the album, rather than the end.

Tracks Recommended

  • Harmonia Vita
  • Maybe i can’t good-bye
  • LOVE★GUN
  • Yorokobi no Uta
  • Hoshi no Kakera

Song of Avoidance

  • Aimai Scream

Aya Hirano’s debut album was definitly split in the middle, half being reminescent of Tommy February6 and the other half being the Tommy Heavenly6 side.  Still, Aya Hirano has made this album her own, and it’s not that bad.  Most of the cute songs needed some work on.  The 2nd half was almost pure awesomeness.  Recommended to everyone!