Wednesday, May 27, 2009

GReeeeN - Koe (Voice) & Haruka Kanata (Very Far Away) ~Piano Version~ (Haruka's B-sides)

Koe (Voice) & Haruka Kanata (Very Far Away) ~Piano Version~ are the 2 B-sides that you can find in GReeeeN's 11th single Haruka which's released officially today .

I find Koe really captivating on 1st listen . It's a somewhat subtle mid tempo orchestra driven tune that has a modern touch which's really nice .

It's also quite calming & less complicated , music structure wise as compared to Haruka which's great .

The ~Piano Version~ of Haruka Kanata is basically a piano instrumental version of Haruka . Not much to comment about this in here other than the fact that it's a really great piece of piano no. , something like what the guys did with regards to Kiseki where you can find Yozora no Kiseki (Night Sky Miracle) ~Orgel version~ which's basically a piano version of Kiseki that you can find in their 2nd album A , Domo. Ohisashiburi Desu .

GReeeeN has certainly been delivering the goods & in comes another fantastic single that they have brought to the music table & Haruka's the quartet's 3rd single release of the year .

They have come a long way since their debut single Michi & for them to release their 11th single today , they have come of day & age .

Haruka will be re-released on 10th June which's on the same day as their brand new 3rd album Shio , Koshou -SALT & PEPPER- . However , for the re-release of the single , it will have a different cover & tracklist wise , it will include 2 different B-sides that you will not find in this edition which're titled ROOKIES Main Theme & ROOKIES Ai No (Love) Theme .

Monday, May 25, 2009

GLAY - Fuyu no Etorange (Winter French) (THE GREAT VACATION ‐extra‐ Live ver.) (I am xxx's B-side)

THE GREAT VACATION ‐extra‐ Live ver. of Fuyu no Etorange (Winter French) serves as the B-side song in GLAY's brand new 41st single I am xxx which's released officially today .

Compared to the angsty driven A-side that's of I am xxx , THE GREAT VACATION ‐extra‐ Live ver. of Fuyu no Etorange is basically a really gorgeous stripped down song .

Lead vocalist Teru sounds fantastic & emotional in the live version of Fuyu no Etorange & I really adore the melody which's basically piano driven & a few instruments backing him up & the end result's this beautiful & heartwarming no. .

GLAY certainly has been bringing the goods & this goes for I am xxx as well . I really enjoyed their last single SAY YOUR DREAM a lot & this looks set to take place as well for I am xxx too .

The quartet's celebrating their 15th anniversary in the music business in Japan this year & what better way than releasing yet another fantastic single in the form of I am xxx .

After the release of I am xxx , they will be releasing a greatest hits compilation titled The Great Vacation Vol.1 - Super Best Of Glay - on 10th June which is a triple CD set containing most of their singles released after 2000 , a re-recorded version of their 1998 hit Yuuwaku which you can find in the 2 first CD's , while the third CD comprised mostly of unreleased songs .

Between July 15th & 16th , GLAY will be staging their upcoming tour called Glay Hall Tour 2009 - The Great Vacation .

Friday, May 22, 2009

Koda Kumi - Lick me ♥ & ECSTASY

CD Only Cover :

CD + DVD Cover :

CD + DVD & Pouch Cover :

Lick me ♥ & ECSTASY are 2 songs taken from Koda Kumi's upcoming 44th single 3 SPLASH which's scheduled for release on 8th July .

This comes almost 4 months + since the release of her last single It's all Love ! which's a collaboration between her younger sister misono & herself .

3 SPLASH's Koda 1st triple A-side single which contains 3 songs & CDJapan described the following tunes as follows :

1) Lick me ♥ (Pop)
2) ECSTASY (Dance)
3) Hashire ! (Run !) (Rock)

All the songs will each get a music video of its own & it will be released in 3 different editions , a CD only , a CD + DVD (containing remixes for all 3 songs) & a limited edition CD + DVD (you will not get the remixes in this context) which comes with an accessory pouch .

Both songs were played on Koda's radio show OH MY RADIO ! a few days ago & I will be reviewing the 1st 2 songs now .

Described as Pop by CDJapan , Lick me ♥ is the theme song of KODA KUMI FEVER LIVE IN HALL II .

Before you go !!! over the title which I initially did so , there's nothing dirty sounding about Lick me ♥ as it's essentially a really catchy piece of tune & the dumdumduwum is really cute .

In fact I myself am surprised to find that Lick me ♥ sounds completely different from what I imagine & here I was assuming that it might be another JUICY or Ima no Sugu Hoshii but nope & I believe in the song , Koda sings about eating & licking ice cream supposedly during summer hence the title .

Lick me ♥ is really summer-ish , you can definitely tell from the sound of it & it's either something you will like or dislike . It's definitely in the same vein as her other cute pop songs but thank goodness it's not another girls or Lady Go ! so it's a good sign .

Described as Dance as CDJapan , it's track #2 ECSTASY & this's such a HOT dance tune & I was immediately well hooked onto the song like a drug . It sounds like a distinct cousin of Driving which's 1 of my fave album tracks in her 7th album TRICK .

The beats are more fierce & edgy in ECSTASY which's fantastic & it's kinda obvious that I definitely prefer ECSTASY as compared to the cute sounding Lick me ♥ but at the end of the day , both tunes are solid in their own right in my opinion .

The last track , the rock inspired tune Hashire ! (Run !) will be reviewed in due time .

Thursday, May 21, 2009

abingdon boys school - Valkyrie (JAP's B-side)

Valkyrie is found as the B-side tune in abingdon boys school's 6th single JAP which was released yesterday .

In keeping the trend in line with the band's unofficial 'policy' to dish out full English B-sides , Valkyrie follows suit in this case .

What makes Valkyrie unique as compared to the band's previous B-sides is that if you stay tune after the 2nd chorus , you can hear a lady voice in the background who's the very same person who did some background speaking for their 2nd single HOWLING & also DOWN TO YOU & she goes by the name of Lynne Hobday & that adds a nice touch & edge to Valkryie .

As always , abingdon boys school has delivered another rocking great single . Immediately when I 1st heard JAP way back last year , I knew it somehow or another , it has the potential to do well & so far it's judging from its chart performance run on the Oricon at this point in time .

I'm not sure if they will be releasing another new single as I think a 2nd album's kinda overdue to a certain extent .

But regardless of which , I will be waiting in anticipation for what future things that they have up their sleeves .

At the meantime , I will enjoy listening to their latest offering in the form of JAP !

Wednesday, May 20, 2009

Yuna Ito - love you

love you is found as track #1 in Yuna Ito's upcoming 3rd album DREAM which's scheduled for release next Wed .

Yuna played the song on her radio show Heart to Heart a few days back & frankly I kinda have mixed feelings over the opening track of DREAM .

1 moment I will like it & the next I will not because it gets repetitive as time goes by & the words love you are always going on over & over again .

Melody wise , it's almost in the same vein as Koi wa groovy x2 with relatively calmer Carribean beats .

I still think nothing beats WORKAHOLIC which's the opening track found on her debut album HEART .

It's a pretty decent opening tune but not exactly the kind of opening song that I was expecting after WORKAHOLIC & Power of Love .

Maybe in due time my perception towards love you will change as it seems to me that Yuna's moving towards a more dancey Carribean like style overall for the mood of DREAM in which I don't know if that's a good or bad thing .

Tuesday, May 19, 2009

GLAY - I am xxx

CD Only Cover :

CD + DVD Cover :

I am xxx's GLAY's 41st single . Scheduled to be released next Mon instead of Wed (where usually new Japan singles/albums are released on every Wed's) , this comes 2 months+ since the release of their previous single SAY YOUR DREAM .

The band's brand new single will served as the theme song for the live action film Last Blood a.k.a. Blood : The Last Vampire starring Jeon Ji Hyun and Koyuki .

2009's GLAY's 15th anniversary & what better way than to release even more material & there's no stopping the guys in the form of I am xxx & frankly I think the song fits the whole theme song Blood : The Last Vampire very well .

It kinda reminded me of VERB a bit except there's an appearance of opera , heavily utilisation of synth being thrown into this mean & bad ass piece of jrock song . It's so different from the somewhat subtle sounding that's of SAY YOUR DREAM but this's 1 song that I frankly do not mind to listen to simply because it kicks some serious ass !

THE GREAT VACATION ‐extra‐Live ver. of Fuyu no Etorange (Winter French) will serve as a B-side in the single .

Saturday, May 16, 2009

Miliyah Kato x Shota Shimizu - Looking your eyes & I'M YOUR ANGEL (Love Forever's B-sides)

Looking your eyes & I'M YOUR ANGEL are the 2 B-sides found on Miliyah Kato x Shota Shimizu's latest duet single Love Forever which was released this Wed .

Written & composed by Miliyah & Shota , Looking your eyes's a really nice mid tempo B-side which's almost the same like the A-side except it's a lot more mellower & slower which's great .

I like the way both of them were able to harmonised themselves in sync & extremely well & hats off to them for having a hand in writing & composing it together just like what they did to Love Forever

The 2nd B-side is a cover of the classic Celine Dion and R. Kelly duet of the same title except the title's all in upper caps .

This cover was 1st found on Sony Music Japan's Tribute to Celine Dion CD , even though Shota's own official debut was after the release of this tribute album .

Frankly I was real skeptical to hear Miliyah & Shota's take on such a great iconic song but I was surprised when I finally got to hear I'M YOUR ANGEL in that they more or less did justice to the original .

That & also their English command & dictation's surprisingly good & I'm able to understand what the duo's singing . It's not easy & no mean feat to pull off such a song especially since English's not their 1st language but they did it pretty well .

Love Forever overall's so far 1 of my fave duets collaborations that I have came across for the year . I'm frankly impressed with the way the duo's able to deliver the goods , musically & who knows maybe this will led me to try Miliyah's material in the near future .

Shota will be releasing his 4th single on 15th July that's currently untitled at this point in time .

Until then , do yourself a favor & listen to Love Forever . You'll be amazed at the quality & production of the whole overall package .

Friday, May 15, 2009

Mika Nakashima - No Answer (Over Load's B-side)

No Answer's the B-side tune that can be found on Mika Nakashima's 28th single Over Load , which was released 2 days ago .

Written by Mika & arranged by producer/guitarist Yoshito Tanaka , the overall mood of No Answer kinda reminded me a little bit of FOCUS which's the B-side of her last single ORION except in No Answer's case , it has a more fresh & calmer mood & melody wise , it's less complicated than Over Load which's a perfect contrast & hats off to Mika who wrote it too just like what she did for Over Load .

You also can find a Hidefumi Kenmochi remix of Over Load in the single & like what I said before , I'm usually not a remix person to begin with but I'm surprised that I enjoyed it as it boosts gorgeous beats & strings as compared to the original melody pertaining to Over Load .

Over Load overall's a great single that Mika has delivered for 2009 . Just when I thought that ORION & let alone her 6th album VOICE were awesome , she stepped up her game musically & delivered the goods once again in the form of Over Load .

I look forward to see what she has up her sleeves in due time .

Thursday, May 14, 2009

Takizawa Hideaki - Mugen no Hane (Wings Of Infinity) & YOU yacchai na yo (Do Not Do It) !!

Mugen no Hane (Wings Of Infinity) is the 2nd A-side of Takizawa Hideaki's 2nd single / Mugen no Hane which was released on last Wed .

This served as the main song for the 2009 installment pertaining to Tackey's popular namesake stage musical Takizawa Enbujo which was staged in Japan from March 29 to April 25 .

Written & composed by Tackey himself , Mugen no Hane features the vocals of 4 Johnny's Jr. members in the form of A.B.C-Z's Kawai Fumito and Totsuka Shota of + Kis-My-Ft2 Kitayama Hiromitsu and Fujigaya Taisuke .

I must add that all 4 of them participated in Tackey's Takizawa Enbujo musical too .

Compared to the upbeat & somewhat 50's sounding , Mugen no Hane sees Tackey singing a really easy listening mid tempo tune & I think it's a great & kind gesture for Tackey to allow 4 of his juniors to sing alongside with him & all of them can hold a tune or 2 .

It's equally dancey like but it doesn't sound complicated as the 1st A-side & kudos to Tackey for having a hand in writing/composing Mugen no Hane .

Only found in the CD only of the single , it's YOU yacchai na yo (Do Not Do It) !! & let's just say that you should listen to this if you don't plan to take yourself seriously as it definitely reminded me of Home Party !! which's found in the B-side / CD only edition of Tackey's debut solo single Ai Kakumei .

Other than that , I find the lyrics of YOU yacchai na yo amusing too .

In general I really enjoyed Tackey's latest single . Compared to Ai Kakumei , / Mugen no Hane is a more stronger follow up & it's less cheesy & more dancey/peppy & I think it's nice of Tackey to invite his juniors to sing alongside with him on Mugen no Hane in which I feel the other seniors in Johnny's & Associates should follow Tackey's mindset & do it as suit .

It reminds to be seen on whether Tackey & Tsubasa will release any new group material in due time but until that happens , I make do with Tackey's latest single solo offering .

Wednesday, May 06, 2009

ARASHI - Ashita no Kioku / Crazy Moon ~Kimi wa Muteki~ Covers

CD Only Cover :

CD + DVD Type A Cover :

CD + DVD Type B Cover :

The covers for all 3 editions pertaining to ARASHI's upcoming 26th single Ashita no Kioku / Crazy Moon ~Kimi wa Muteki~ are finally up & running & oh wow what can I say ? They're very nice & cool !

I really like all of them & the design/font/concept's very unique but if you were to ask me , I will pick the CD + DVD Type A cover as my fave out of the lot .

There's just something about it that I like about the CD + DVD Type A cover in particular .

ARASHI's latest fantastic single Ashita no Kioku / Crazy Moon ~Kimi wa Muteki~ is scheduled to be released in 3 Wed's time ie. on 27th & be sure to get a copy or 2 or 3 in support for 1 of Japan's top selling & unstoppable Johnny's boybands .

Sunday, May 03, 2009

Takizawa Hideaki -

CD Only Cover :

CD + DVD Type A Cover :

CD + DVD Type B Cover : is the 1st A-side of Takizawa Hideaki's 2nd single / Mugen no Hane (Wings Of Infinite) which's scheduled for release this coming Wed & this comes 4 months since the release of his debut single Ai Kakumei .

This's a really uptempo number to say the least & to me I actually prefer as compared to Ai Kakumei slightly as the lyrics are not as cheesy as Tackey's debut solo single even though I can't help but compare against BREAKERZ's BAMBINO ~Bambino~ as both songs have very similar music traits .

Not that it's a bad thing but at least such 80's sounding music are more or less coming back with a bang of sorts & Sha La La is no doubt catchy & really caught my attention on 1st listen .

The 2nd A-side Mugen no Hana & the B-side YOU yacchai na yo (Do Not Do It) !! which's only found in the CD only edition of the single will be reviewed in due time .

Saturday, May 02, 2009

CD Review :: Kanjani∞ - PUZZLE

2 CDs Only Cover :

CD + DVD Cover :

Disc 1 Tracklist :

1) Ichibyou (One Second) KISS
2) Akai-shinkirou (Red Mirage)
3) Puzzle
4) Kawaita Hana (Dry Flower)
5) Gori-gori (Scraping)
6) It's My Soul (KJ3 MIX)
7) Rolling Coaster
8) My Last Train
9) Musekinin (Irresponsible) Hero
10) Brulee
11) Saite Ikyo (Bloom And Live)
12) Giga-majime Waga Faito (Our Giga-Serious Fight)
13) Jounetsu (Passion) Party
14) Wahaha
15) Donna ni Hanaretetatte Soba ni Iru kara (Because However Much We Are Separated , I Am By Your Side)

Disc 2 Tracklist (Regular Edition) :

1) words (Subaru Shibutani's Solo)
2) no-no-no (Okura Tadayoshi's Solo)
3) Airairo (Shota Yasuda's Solo)
4) One's shadow (Murakami Shingo's Solo)
5) Wan-shan-ron-pin (Maruyama Ryuhei's Solo)
6) 413man (Yokoyama You's Solo)
7) Half Down (Ryo Nishikido's Solo)

PUZZLE is Kanjani∞'s 3rd album . It was released on 15th April & 3 singles made the cut in the band's brand new studio offering .

The album was released in 2 editions , a 2 CDs only edition in which you can find a new batch of 7 solo songs in the 2nd disc while the next edition's in CD + DVD format where the DVD contains 3 unit songs which have music videos to accompany the tunes :

1) Glorious (Subaru Shibutani , Ryo Nishikido & Okura Tadayoshi)
2) Kicyu (Yokoyama You & Shota Yasuda)
3) YOU CAN SEE (Murakami Shingo & Maruyama Ryuhei)

You also can find making of & behind the scenes footages in the DVD too .

Ichibyou (One Second) KISS is the 1st album track to start things off & compared to KJ2 Zukkoke Daidassou's Big Sky Blues , I like Ichibyou KISS more as it's stronger & catchier .

I think it's a cool , energetic & fun way to start PUZZLE with Ichibyou KISS .

Akai-shinkirou (Red Mirage) took a while for me to remember because I frankly find the song average/un-memorable on 1st listen but after listening to it a few more times , I have no problems with this yet another upbeat tune .

Puzzle is titled the same as the album & this's 1 of my fave album tracks simply because I love the melody & the lyrics . It's the 1st album ballad & it's a great one .

I adore the way that the guys harmonised real well together & the fact that Ryo Nishikido opened & closed the song , he did it pretty nicely . It's tracks like this that allowed Kanjani∞ to shine a great deal .

Kawaita Hana (Dry Flower) is another smooth album track & I just love how carefree/finger snapping/catchy the song goes . It somehow reminded me of Carnival to a certain extent as I realised both songs displayed similar music traits but it's ok as both tunes are equally good .

Gori-gori (Scraping) was 1 of the 4 album tracks that I 1st heard on Yokoyama You & Murakami Shingo's radio show Kanjani Eight Yokoyama You – Murakami Shingo no Recomen ! & as a result I had no problems remembering this tune when I finally heard Gori-gori in high quality .

It does sound like Goujou ni GO ! to me except Gori-gori's more stronger due to the strong electric guitar backing . That & it's also less crazy too .

After 5 albums tracks , in comes the KJ3 MIX of the guys's 7th single It's My Soul . Compared with the single version , the album version of It's My Soul has a more stronger music & vocal arrangements which can be considered minor adjustments to a certain extent .

Way before Musekinin Hero came along , I considered It's My Soul as my jam because the song just puts you in a really good mood within moments of hearing it . That & also the video is amusing & entertaining to watch .

There's no way you can keep a straight face while watching It's My Soul if you ask me . It's basically a pop song with shades of saxophone going on & it's just written fun & energetic all over the place .

Rolling Coaster's the 2nd song that I have heard on Yokoyama & Murakami's radio show prior to the release of PUZZLE .

With a title like Rolling Coaster , I was actually expecting another crazy whack tune of the guys but they surprised me in the fact that's not the case .

Instead , Rolling Coaster is a relatively catchy pop/rock tune & they even thrown in a bit of synth for good measure to make Rolling Coaster stand out to a certain extent which definitely works .

My Last Train is the 2nd ballad album track on PUZZLE after Puzzle & as expected this's yet another top notch ballad that the guys have delivered .

It's tough for me to say which ballad I prefer more on PUZZLE as both are equally good in their own right even though nothing still beats Eden at this point in time .

Musekinin (Irresponsible) Hero is Kanjani∞'s 9th single & the 1st week sales of Musekinin Hero outsold the whole total of their previous then best selling single which was their 5th single Kanfuu Fighting .

This's the single that changed my whole perception on Kanjani∞ seeing that before that , I had a very negative impression of them .

It was only until I listened to 1 of 2008's best / most insane over the top / catchiest tunes that really changed my mind musically over the guys & convinced me to give their discography a shot & as they say , the rest's history .

Also there's no way you can avoid the 'jajaja' effect going on in Musekinin Hero . Now how about that ?

Brulee is 1 of the more unique songs on PUZZLE as it has shades of somewhat folk guitar strumming going on at the beginning of the song & pop/rock are also thrown in the mix .

I somehow had deja vu vibes of Kemuri when I 1st heard Brulee as I can't help but find both of them similar . Not that it's bad thing seeing that I like both tunes .

Saite Ikyo (Bloom And Live) was the 1st very song that I heard on Yokoyama & Murakami's radio show & naturally I was no doubt thrilled that Saite Ikyo made the cut on their 3rd album .

As I reviewed about Saite Ikyo a while back ago , I described it as that it reminded me of a distant cousin of their 6th single Zukkoke Otokomichi in that melody & style wise , they tend to sound almost identical but thankfully each song has an unique niche .

Giga-majime Waga Faito (Our Giga-Serious Fight) is the last tune that I have heard on Yokoyama & Murakami's radio show & I only find this no. OK in that it's a typical pop song that Kanjani∞ released .

I wouldn't really consider Giga-majime Waga Faito to be my fave album track but it's still worth a listen .

Jounetsu (Passion) Party just screams out fun fun fun all over the place & as the title suggest , it's a great tune that you can spin if you're planning to throw a party .

It somehow & oddly sounded like NEWS's STARDUST in certain parts of the song except I find Jounetsu Party to be more stronger & memorable unlike STARDUST .

Wahaha is the final / 8th single found on KJ3 PUZZLE . This's actually the 1st song that I heard of Kanjani∞ & as expected I didn't like it in any bit at all .

I actually considered it as a joke & the song title's ain't helping matters either .

Thankfully in due time when I decided to listen to the rest of the guys's material , be it album or singles , I began to lose my dislike towards Wahaha even though I will not consider this as my fave single of Kanjani∞ .

Donna ni Hanaretetatte Soba ni Iru kara (Because However Much We Are Separated , I Am By Your Side) is the last track on disc 1 & this's also another fave album song of mine .

I love it on how great the song sounds as it's a such a nice catchy laidback piano & somewhat folk driven tune . The music appearance of a harmonica adds a nice touch to Donna ni Hanaretetatte Soba ni Iru kara & I think it's quite a fitting way to end things off nicely in the 1st disc of KJ3 PUZZLE .

I have already reviewed disc 1 of PUZZLE & now it's time to review the 2nd disc which contains brand new solo works of the guys .

This disc can only be found if you purchase the normal 2CDs edition of the album . You will not get it if you choose to buy the CD + DVD edition of KJ3 PUZZLE .

1) words (Subaru Shibutani's Solo) - I was surprised when I 1st heard words . I thought it might be another solo that probably will sound something dramatic & great coming from the lead singer of Kanjani∞ & turns out I was right to a certain extent .

Compared to Ryuu Ware , words just makes use of Subaru's great voice & a tinkling of a big bang piano & some finger snapping beats .

I can say that this's either a solo that you will like or wouldn't but thankfully I belong to the 1st category & kudos to Subaru for writing the song too .

2) no-no-no (Okura Tadayoshi's Solo) - Ah I was expecting yet another great ballad from Okura but he surprised me with this hip hop influenced no. .

It's definitely a sharp contrast to the ballad Mamoritai that he sang in KJ2 Zukkoke Daidassou & it's nice to know that Okura's able to tackle both different music genres at ease .

The only grouse about no-no-no was the un-necessary panting sounds that I heard on the song but other than that , it's another catchy piece of solo delivered by Okura & the fact that he wrote this's commendable too .

3) Airairo (Shota Yasuda's Solo) - written & composed by Shota , the style that was showcased in his brand new solo Airairo is the same as Watashi Kagami in that both songs laid in the guitar pop/rock route .

I like both songs equally even though the only thing that I don't like about Airairo was that it kinda ended abruptly in which I thought Shota should have extended the song by a few seconds or so .

But other than this minor hiccup , this's still a nice one that Shota has sang .

4) One's shadow (Murakami Shingo's Solo) - Compared with Forward , One's shadow is quite surprising in the fact that it's quite a laidback & chilled out tune .

I honestly find One's shadow slightly less catchy than the finger snapping Forward & it took me quite a while for me to remember how One's shadow sounds like .

But after that's of the way , I have no issues with One's shadow already . This's worth a listen that Murakami delivered .

5) Wan-shan-ron-pin (Maruyama Ryuhei's Solo) - this's probably the most random solo on PUZZLE because the introduction sounded like some tribe chanting was going on & then Maruyama just starts to sing in this somewhat unusual solo .

Wan-shan-ron-pin is quite random sounding like MAGIC WORD ~Boku Nari no ...~ & let's just say that both solos that Maruyama are on the fun side & both of them should be listened to on days when you don't take yourself seriously .

6) 413man (Yokoyama You's Solo) - written by Yokoyama , it's the oddly titled 413man .

This's also another solo that took me by surprise as I thought it might sound like another rap / sing solo that he sang in KJ2 Zukkoke Daidassou ala WONDER BOY but it's actually a relatively strong pop/rock no.

7) Half Down (Ryo Nishikido's Solo) - co written with HIKARI & composed by Ryo , this's also another solo that surprised me .

Compared with Ryo's other solos which're more on the upbeat pop/rock route in the form of stereo & code , Half Down is actually a very nice mid tempo ballad & it's also the only ballad found in the 2nd disc of PUZZLE .

Ryo frankly should sing more of such tunes in due time as I believe he sounds really good & at ease & no surprises I was immediately drawn into Half Down as the lyrics & the melody are beautiful to boot & both of them go in synch with each other very nicely .


Thoughts on

Disc 1 - Frankly I can say that the album tracks on the 1st disc of PUZZLE are more stronger & defined as compared to disc 1 of KJ2 Zukkoke Daidassou .

I didn't like some of the album tracks in KJ2 Zukkoke Daidassou as I found them to be either weak/un-memorable & slower sounding than usual & it doesn't help that some of the songs took me even longer than expected to remember but I'm glad to say for PUZZLE , that's not the case .

Some of the album tracks are really fantastic while for the rest that doesn't sound memorable on 1st listen , they get better as each listen goes by & it helps that the 3 singles that made the cut on the guys's brand new album , despite how crazy & whack all 3 sound , there's no doubt it will put a smile on your face when you listen to them , especially for It's My Soul & Musekinin Hero .

Disc 2 - as always the guys manage to deliver an unstoppable mix of brand new solo material .

There were some nice unexpected surprises here & there as I thought they might deliver the same type of style pertaining to what happened in KJ2 Zukkoke Daidassou but they have proven me really wrong once again .

They really know what works for them & what doesn't vocal wise which shows to me that when comes to album tracks & let alone for their solos , they know how to nail them & balance things out with their crazy whack singles which should be the way as too much of something good can be a bad thing in due time .

PUZZLE is a very nice package that Kanjani∞ has put together & it's a step up musically & then some after KJ2 Zukkoke Daidassou .

ARASHI - Ashita no Kioku (Memories Of Tomorrow)

Ashita no Kioku (Memories Of Tomorrow) is the 1st A-side of ARASHI's 26th single Ashita no Kioku / Crazy Moon ~Kimi wa Muteki~ which will be released on 27th this month .

The song serves as the theme song for fellow member Sakurai Sho's brand new drama ie. the 2nd season of The Quiz Show (in which Kanjani∞'s Yokoyama You has a supporting role in it) .

YesAsia describes the song as a mid-tempo number with a beautiful , dramatic melody & poignant lyrics about being at a crossroads between the indelible past and the hope of tomorrow .

Ashita no Kioku was played yesterday on Aiba Masaki's radio show Aiba Masaki no RECOMEN ! Arashi REMIX & as expected it's a sharp contrast to the 2nd A-side , the 80's sounding Crazy Moon ~Kimi wa Muteki~ .

The mood presented by Ashita no Kioku is a mid tempo ballad & I frankly think that it's 1 of the more serious ballads that ARASHI has released to date .

It's more tone down than truth but this's still a great listen & like what YesAsia mentioned , the melody's just gorgeous to boot .

Just when you thought that Believe / Kumori Nochi , Kaisei was an unstoppable single , in comes another great one that ARASHI has delivered in the form of Ashita no Kioku / Crazy Moon ~Kimi wa Muteki~ .

I frankly wonder if Ashita no Kioku / Crazy Moon ~Kimi wa Muteki~ is able to sell more than its previous double A-side counterparts in due time when Ashita no Kioku / Crazy Moon ~Kimi wa Muteki~ is released on 27th this month since Believe / Kumori Nochi , Kaisei is Japan's top selling single at this point in time but I wouldn't be surprised if that can happen .

Until then , I just enjoy the guys's latest new single & now's to wait for covers for the single , the videos & hopefully a best album to celebrate their 10th anniversary this year will roll out soon .

That & a new studio album & everything will be mapped out real nicely for ARASHI .

Friday, May 01, 2009

Miliyah Kato x Shota Shimizu - Love Forever

CD Only Cover :

CD + DVD Cover :

Love Forever is a new duet single sung by Miliyah Kato & Shota Shimizu under the billing Miliyah Kato x Shota Shimizu .

Scheduled for release on 13th this month , this's Miliyah's 2nd single release for the year , 4 months + since the release of her last single 20-CRY- while for Shota's case , it's his 1st release for the year , 6 months + since the release of his debut album Umbrella .

This's so far my fave duet that I came across for the year . Prior to this new duet no. , I don't know how Miliyah sounded like & for me to able to hear her voice in Love Forever , it's nice actually & it's a very carefree laidback R&B mid tempo tune .

& here I was thinking that it might be a ballad but looks like that's not the case & I must say that Shota & Miliyah compliment each other really well in Love Forever vocally which's great & hats off to both of them for writing & composing Love Forever .

Looking your eyes & a cover of Celine Dion & R.Kelly's I'M YOUR ANGEL serve as B-sides in the single .

Blog Personnel

Karen Pang

# 10th Jan

# #1 BREAKERZ fan in Singapore since 2008 debut single ♥

# My music blog consists of JPop/Rock singles & albums reviews that I put my heart , efforts & soul into writing them as I'm disgusted with the way that JPop/Rock music is being treated/written/reviewed in Singapore so to the local media (yes you TEENS , Teenage Magazine & The Strait Times) , screw you all . I basically can write better JPop/Rock reviews , period

# My LiveJournal

# Tagboard has been removed as I can't be bothered to deal with un-necessary spam comments any longer ~_~

♥ ♥ ♥ BREAKERZ ♥ ♥ ♥

Upcoming New JPop/JRock Releases

# SID's 1st mini album Ichiban Sukina Basho EP , 220818 , Wed

# Koda Kumi's 15th album DNA , 220818 , Wed

# Hey! Say! JUMP's 6th album SENSE or LOVE , 220818 , Wed

# Namie Amuro's namie amuro Final Tour 2018 ~Finally~ DVD + Blu-ray , 290818 , Wed

# FLOWER FLOWER's Inko no have a nice day tour 2018.05.09 Zepp Tokyo DVD + Blu-ray , 290818 , Wed

# NEWS's 24th single [Ikiro] , 120918 , Wed

# Kis-My-Ft2's 22nd single Kimi,Boku. , 031018 , Wed

# GRANRODEO's 1st mini album M・S COWBOY no Gyakushuu EP , 241018 , Wed

# ayaka's 5th album title tbc , out in Autumn 2018

Album Reviews

# Hilcrhyme - One Man EP

# Kis-My-Ft2 - Yummy!!


# FLOWER FLOWER - Spotlight

# Koda Kumi - AND


# ARASHI - 「untitled」


# Aoyama Thelmas - 10TH DIARY



# V6 - The ONES

# Shota Shimizu - FLY

# Ken Hirai - Utabaka Dake ni.

# Acid Black Cherry - Acid BLOOD Cherry


# Mika Nakashima - TOUGH


# Koda Kumi - W FACE ~inside~ & W FACE ~outside~

# GRANRODEO - Karma to Labyrinth

# GRANRODEO - Pierrot Dancin'

# Hilcrhyme - SIDE BY SIDE

# Kanon Wakeshima - luminescence Q.E.D

# ARASHI - Are You Happy?

# Mao from SID - Maison de M EP

# Hey ! Say ! JUMP - DEAR.

# Ken Hirai - THE STILL LIFE

# BENI - Shiki Uta summer

# Kis-My-Ft2 - I SCREAM

# ayumi hamasaki - M(A)DE IN JAPAN


# Aoyama Thelma - PINK TEARS EP

# Shota Shimizu - PROUD

# flumpool - EGG



# BENI - Undress

# SPYAIR - 4

# ARASHI - Japonism

# Aoyama Thelma - GRAY SMOKE EP

# ayumi hamasaki - sixxxxxx EP


# Domoto Koichi - Spiral

# Kis-My-Ft2 - KIS-MY-WORLD

# Hey ! Say ! JUMP - JUMPing CAR

# Namie Amuro - _genic

# ayaka - Rainbow Road


# ayumi hamasaki - A ONE

# Hilcrhyme - REVIVAL


# Koda Kumi - WALK OF MY LIFE

# B'z - EPIC DAY

# Acid Black Cherry - L

# Kanon Wakeshima - Tsukinami

# NEWS - White





# Anna Tsuchiya - LUCIFER EP

# Yamashita Tomohisa - YOU

# Aoyama Thelma - Lonely Angel

# Yamashita Tomohisa - Asobi EP

# Kis-My-Ft2 - Kis-My-Journey

# ayumi hamasaki - Colours

# KAT-TUN - come Here

# Hey ! Say ! JUMP - smart

# Fukuyama Masaharu - HUMAN

# Miliyah Kato x Shota Shimizu - THE BEST

# JASMINE - Welcome to Jas Vegas


# Shota Shimizu - ENCORE

# Hilcrhyme - FIVE ZERO ONE


# Koda Kumi - Bon Voyage

# Tegomass - Tegomass no Seishun


# KAT-TUN - Kusabi -kusabi- EP


# Yamashita Tomohisa - A NUDE

# Matsushita Yuya - #musicoverdose

# JASMINE - Complexxx


# BENI - Red



# Namie Amuro - FEEL

# AKIHIDE - Amber

# Kis-My-Ft2 - Good Ikuze !

# girl next door - Life of Sound

# V6 - Oh ! My ! Goodness !

# ayumi hamasaki - LOVE again

# Mika Nakashima - REAL

# flumpool - experience

# ayumi hamasaki - again EP

# Hilcrhyme - LIKE A NOVEL

# ayumi hamasaki - LOVE EP

# ARASHI - Popcorn

# Domoto Koichi - Gravity

# SPYAIR - Just Do It

# SID - M&W

# Yamashita Tomohisa - Ero

# Namie Amuro - Uncontrolled

# Hey ! Say ! JUMP - JUMP WORLD

# Kis-My-Ft2 - Kis-My-1st

# Acid Black Cherry - 『2012』

# Shota Shimizu - Naturally

# ayumi hamasaki - Party Queen

# Matsushita Yuya - 2U


# Kuroki Meisa - UNLOCKED

# L'Arc~en~Ciel - BUTTERFLY

# ayaka - The beginning

# Koda Kumi - JAPONESQUE

# Kuriyama Chiaki - CIRCUS Deluxe Edition

# girl next door - Agaruneku !

# Hilcrhyme - RISING

# ON/OFF - Legend Of Twins II -Zoku Futago Densetsu-

# BENI - Fortune


# Saito Kazuyoshi - 45 STONES

# Tegomass - Tegomass no Mahou

# SPYAIR - Rockin' the World


# ayumi hamasaki - FIVE EP

# B'z - C'mon

# School Food Punishment - Prog-Roid

# ARASHI - Beautiful World

# Aoyama Thelma - WILL


# GIRL NEXT DOOR - Destination

# Tackey & Tsubasa - TRIP & TREASURE EP

# Shota Shimizu - COLORS

# Koda Kumi - Dejavu

# SID - dead stock

# flumpool - Fantasia of Life Stripe

# Yamashita Tomohisa - SUPERGOOD , SUPERBAD

# Kuroki Meisa - MAGAZINE

# ayumi hamasaki - Love songs

# BENI - Jewel

# Hilcrhyme - MESSAGE

# Saito Kazuyoshi - ARE YOU READY ?

# Mika Nakashima - STAR

# Kanjani∞ - 8UPPERS (Pacchi Uppers)


# Anna Tsuchiya - RULE



# Domoto Koichi - BPM

# Aoyama Thelma - LOVE ! 2

# Hilcrhyme - Recital

# ARASHI - Boku no Miteiru Fukei

# Kanon Wakeshima - Shoujo Shikake no Libretto ~LOLITAWORK LIBRETTO~


# Hey ! Say ! JUMP - JUMP NO.1


# BENI - Lovebox

# Matsushita Yuya - I AM ME

# Acid Black Cherry - Q.E.D.

# Acid Black Cherry - BLACK LIST

# school food punishment - amp-reflection

# Tegomass - Tegomass no Ai EP


# ayumi hamasaki - Rock'n'Roll Circus

# V6 - READY ?


# DAIGO☆STARDUST - The space toy

# Shota Shimizu - Journey

# Koda Kumi - UNIVERSE

# NEVER LAND - Beautiful Days EP

# abingdon boys school - ABINGDON ROAD

# BENI - Bitter & Sweet


# LANDS - Olympos EP

# flumpool - What's flumpool !?

# Kuroki Meisa - ATTITUDE EP

# Yusuke - Ano .. Konnan Dekimashita Kedo.

# KinKi Kids - J album

# Namie Amuro - PAST < FUTURE


# alan - my life


# B'z - MAGIC


# Saito Kazuyoshi - Tsuki ga Noboreba

# Aoyama Thelma - Emotions

# SID - hikari

# Kobukuro - CALLING

# Domoto Koichi - mirror

# Tegomass - Tegomass no Uta

# ON / OFF - Legend Of Twins I -Futago Densetsu-

# Fukuyama Masaharu - Zankyou

# Kanon Wakeshima - Shinshoku Dolce

# GReeeeN - Shio , Koshou -SALT & PEPPER-

# flumpool - Unreal EP

# Yuna Ito - DREAM

# Kanjani∞ - PUZZLE

# KAT-TUN - Break the Records -by you & for you-

# Kuroki Meisa - hellcat EP

# Kanjani∞ - KJ2 Zukkoke Daidassou

# ayumi hamasaki - NEXT LEVEL

# Utada Hikaru - DEEP RIVER

# Utada - This Is The One

# Kanjani∞ - KJ1 F·T·O

# ARASHI - Dream"A"Live

# Kanjani∞ - Kansha ni Eight EP

# alan - Voice of EARTH

# Aoyama Thelma - LOVE !

# Koda Kumi - TRICK

# Aoyama Thelma - DIARY





# GReeeeN - A , Domo. Ohisashiburi Desu


# GReeeeN - A , Domo. Hajimemashite


# ai otsuka - LOVE LETTER

# Mika Nakashima - VOICE


# NEWS - color

# Anna Tsuchiya - NUDY SHOW !

# Soundtrack Of High School Musical 3 : Senior Year

# L'Arc~en~Ciel - KISS

# BREAKERZ - Ao no Mirai EP

# ai otsuka - LOVE PUNCH

# ai otsuka - LOVE COOK

# ai otsuka - LOVE JAM

# KAT-TUN - cartoon KAT-TUN II You

# OLIVIA - Trinka Trinka EP

# NEWS - touch

# NEWS - pacific

# ARASHI - Iza , Now

# ARASHI - One

# NANA Triple Billing

# OLIVIA - The Cloudy Dreamer EP

# Anna Tsuchiya - strip me ?


# KAT-TUN - Best of KAT-TUN

# Anna Tsuchiya - Taste My Beat EP

# ARASHI - Time

# Electrico - We Satellites

# ayaka - Sing to the Sky

# ayaka - First Message


# Koda Kumi - BEST ~BOUNCE & LOVERS~

# Jesse McCartney - Departure

# The Veronicas - Hook Me Up

# Ken Hirai - LIFE is ...

# Ashlee Simpson - Bittersweet World

# Ken Hirai - gaining through losing

# Yuna Ito - HEART

# Utada Hikaru - HEART STATION

# Ken Hirai - FAKIN' POP

Yuna Ito - WISH

# Ken Hirai - SENTIMENTALovers

# Koda Kumi - Kingdom

# ayumi hamasaki - GUILTY

# ai otsuka - LOVE PiECE

# abingdon boys school - abingdon boys school

# ayumi hamasaki - I am ...

# ayumi hamasaki - RAINBOW

# The Great Spy Experiment - Flower Show Riots

# Koda Kumi - BEST ~second session~

# The Click Five - Modern Minds And Pastimes

# Soundtrack Of High School Musical 2

# Koda Kumi - Black Cherry

# Namie Amuro - PLAY

# Maroon 5 - It Wouldn't Be Soon Before Long

# ayumi hamasaki - Memorial address EP

# NANA starring Mika Nakashima - THE END

# Mika Nakashima - YES

# Jamie Michael - People Watching

# ayumi hamasaki - A BEST 2 -BLACK- & A BEST 2 -WHITE-

# ayumi hamasaki - (miss)understood

# ayumi hamasaki - Duty & MY STORY

# Muse - Blackholes And Relevations

# Utada Hikaru - ULTRA BLUE

# ayumi hamasaki - Secret

# Utada - Exodus

# Vanessa Hudgens - V

# The Veronicas - The Secret Life Of The Veronicas

# Jesse McCartney - Right Where You Want Me

# Maksim - Electrik

# McFly - Motion In The Ocean

Other Posts Worth Checking Out

# Fave Songs Of 2010

# Fave Singles Releases Of 2010

# Fave Albums Releases Of 2010

# Fave Songs Of 2009

# Fave Singles Releases Of 2009

# Fave Albums Releases For 2009

# The Best Music Releases For The 1st 1/2 Of 2009

# Fave New Acts Of 2008

# Fave Songs Of 2008

# Fave Singles Of 2008

# Fave Albums Of 2008

# The 1st Song I Heard From My Future JPop Acts

# The Best & The Worst Music Releases For The 1st 1/2 Of 2008

# Fave Albums Of 2007

# The Click Five - The Band Behind The Band Documentary

# 987 Control Songlist Set

# Hot Review Of Maksim's Electrik

# Lu Yong Find My Shoes Journey

# Eric Dill Of The Click Five Got Punk'd !


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