CD Review :: BREAKERZ - B.R.Z ACOUSTIC EP
CD Only Cover :
CD + DVD Cover :
1) Shunrenka (Spring Love Song)
2) Ao no Mirai (Blue Future)
4) BAMBINO ~Bambino~
5) B.R.Z ~Ashita e no Kakehashi~ (~Bridge For Tomorrow~)
7) Miss you
8) Nanzenkai ... Nanmankai ... (Thousand Times ... 10 Thousand Times ...)
B.R.Z ACOUSTIC EP is BREAKERZ's 1st mini acoustic album which was released on 7th April , a day before frontman DAIGO's 32nd birthday .
No singles are included in B.R.Z ACOUSTIC EP & Shunrenka (Spring Love Song) is the only album track that received a music video & the mini album debuted at #9 with 1st week sales of 9,094 .
The guys's 1st mini acoustic album consists in total of 8 acoustic songs in which , the acoustic versions of Dandelion , Nanzenkai ... Nanmankai ... (Thousand Times ... 10 Thousand Times ...) , B.R.Z ~Ashita e no Kakehashi~ (~Bridge For Tomorrow~) & Birdman were originally found as B-side tracks in the guys's GRAND FINALE , Everlasting Luv / BAMBINO ~Bambino~ , Hikari (Light) & LOVE FIGHTER ~Koi no (Love) Battle~ singles .
A healing album perfect for Spring , BREAKERZ's quiet side creates an occasionally painful & pleasant atmosphere .
As I said earlier on , Shunrenka is the only new song in B.R.Z ACOUSTIC EP & it was written & composed by DAIGO .
This song was inspired by his real-life experience of an unrequited love & this song was materialised before the formation of BREAKERZ 3 years back so it's not exactly a new song to begin with .
Guitarist SHINPEI commented in his blog that for Shunrenka , you're saying "Thank you , good bye" for a new start & that you face the future and you're thankful for what had happened in the past .
I reviewed about Shunrenka a while back ago & I was driven to tears when I heard the song as it's really touching/emotional & somehow or another , emotionally I felt somewhat settled after I heard the song .
I'm not sure if it's because it's something that anyone & myself can relate to but you can feel how much emotions that DAIGO poured into Shunrenka . Even in here , he sounded a lot more vulnerable & somewhat hurt & raw too but nevetheless , it's still a great song & it totally deserves to get a video for sure .
Sharing the same title as their 1st mini album , it's Ao no Mirai (Blue Future) .
This's 1 of the many songs that the guys never fail to perform live in concerts & it's also 1 of my personal faves too & that goes for SHINPEI as well .
In fact , SHINPEI has deep fond memories of Ao no Mirai as it was the 1st song he composed , so he was really happy it's included in B.R.Z ACOUSTIC EP .
The tempo is slower than the original take in which the acoustic is calmer . For the opening , a "Future in blue" phrase has been added in the chorus .
Ao no Mirai is already a great song but it's these few little added touches which makes the acoustic take on par if not even more better than the original take of the song .
The guitar solo also changed from the original melody . For SHINPEI's solo , he played along with the piano and the same phrase .
1st found as track #4 in their 2nd album CRASH & BUILD , it's Dandelion & it's the oldest acoustic song you can find in B.R.Z ACOUSTIC EP seeing that it was the 1st acoustic no. that they included as their 1st B-side in the group's 4th single GRAND FINALE which was released last year in Feb 18th .
I always have like Dandelion way before the guys made an acoustic take of the song as CRASH & BUILD was a really top notch 2nd album offering of the trio so I wasn't really surprised when they chose to 'acoustic-fic' Dandelion & included it in GRAND FINALE .
It's a great piece of work which reminds you of guitarist AKIHIDE's jazzy guitar influenece : Wes Montgomery .
DAIGO's voice is much more deeper in the acoustic take of Dandelion & it's a sad and painful song .
BAMBINO ~Banbino~ is the next song & is found as the 2nd A-side of their 5th single Everlasting Luv / BAMBINO ~Bambino~ .
Ok unlike Dandelion , BAMBINO ~Banbino~ is probably the last song I expected the guys to make an acoustic take of things & I never thought I would use the words hot , sexy & passionate to describe an acoustic song too but this really fits & applies very well for BAMBINO ~Banbino~ .
No acoustic guitar strings were used & nylon strings were utilised instead .
With the flamenco dancers in the background , SHINPEI feels like a spanish guitarist while playing (lol don't ask) . As a result , this passionate atmosphere with a piano is cool & I have to agree with what SHINPEI commented & DAIGO sounded a lot more erm sensual in here as compared to the original .
I don't know why or what but it's probably has to do with the way he ended the chorus after he sang it , be it the 1st or ending of the song .
Also if you notice , BAMBINO ~Banbino~ has the honour for being the only single track that's given the acoustic treatment in the mini album .
1st found as track #3 in the group's 2nd album CRASH & BUILD , it's B.R.Z ~Ashita e no Kakehashi~ & this acoustic version was already found in the guys's 6th single Hikari as a B-side no. , in the CD only edition of the single .
Just like Ao no Mirai , it's also 1 of the band's many song staples that they never fail to perform live & for B.R.Z ~Ashita e no Kakehashi~'s case , they love to perform the song in their encore segments & I know that they did an acoustic take of this song as their 1st encore no. last July when they finally got the chance to perform at the Budokan in which they celebrated their 2nd year anniversary .
As what SHINPEI described , B.R.Z ~Ashita e no Kakehashi~'s a theme song , to the fans and them & the acoustic take's a reggae dance no. .
In the beginning of the song , you can hear auto-tune which's a vocal special effect being utilised & this's something which's not used that much extensively in their discography (yet) . Nevertheless , I still like the acoustic of B.R.Z ~Ashita e no Kakehashi~ til now & it's something refreshing to boot too .
1st found as track #2 in the band's debut self titled album , it's Birdman & the acoustic take of the song was already made available as a B-side in their 7th single LOVE FIGHTER ~Koi no Battle~ .
Honestly even up to now , I still don't really have that much love towards Birdman . I figure it's because I didn't like the original take of Birdman that much when I listened to their 1st album .
But for the acoustic take , I appericate that it's a simple arrangement between DAIGO's vocals and the acoustic guitars .
In fact , AKIHIDE had difficulties in playing the guitar pieces for Birdman which surprised me (that happened for Hikari where he had quite a bit of trouble in capturing the electric guitar riffs for his solo part after the 2nd chorus was belted out by DAIGO) & so are the drums pieces , while SHINPEI played a dazzling arpeggio .
And at the ending , SHINPEI has a solo guitar part to close things off which I think that's cool .
Similarly like Birdman , Miss you was also found in the trio's debut album as track #6 .
I was really happy that the guys decided to do an acoustic take of Miss you as it's 1 of the few gems in their debut album which I unfortunately didn't really like most of the songs there .
In here , the acoustic of Miss you became a splendid ballad ! It's a 2 pairs of A melo which SHINPEI really like . (some guitar lingo that he used which I have no idea what it's all about)
I thought Miss you is already great in their debut album but in here , the acoustic is on par if not more superior than the original & DAIGO sounded a lot more hurt & vulnerable in here , I think even I myself might & would tear up , upon hearing this too .
Also it's such a beautiful piano ballad that's chokeful of emotions , it's no surprises that I really really have a great due of new respect towards Miss you now .
The final track to close off B.R.Z ACOUSTIC EP , it's Nanzenkai ... Nanmankai ... . This was originally found as the very 1st track in CRASH & BUILD & acoustic wise , it served as a B-side in the group's 5th single Everlasting Luv / BAMBINO ~Bambino~ which can only be found in the CD only edition of the single .
Another gem in CRASH & BUILD which deservingly received a video , the original take of Nanzenkai ... Nanmankai ... was a very fast paced guitar driven no. which I adore & acoustic wise , it has been transformed to a magnificient ballad which's orchestra driven .
Even though the acoustic of Nanzenkai ... Nanmankai ... is more or less a year old or so , I'm still captivated over it even til now as it's seriously beautiful .
In fact I think it's the only acoustic song that has elements of orchestra attached to it in the mini album which I like it as it makes things a bit more exclusive & I think AKIHIDE did an amazing job in composing both the original & acoustic take of things alongside with writing it .
After releasing a totally kick ass album in the form of FIGHTERZ , BREAKERZ hanged up their electric guitars for the time being & decided to embark on this fantastic project by re-recording some of their songs into acoustic versions .
I always have like acoustic songs way before I crossed over to listen to JPop/JRock full time so I say this's a great mini album for acoustic music lovers to enjoy listening to while chilling out at home .
I might be a bit greedy seeing that I'm a really huge big fan of BREAKERZ but I thought it might be interesting for them to re-record even more songs of theirs into acoustic versions .
Like I would love to hear acoustic takes maybe Sekai wa Odoru (The World's Dancing) (especially this as it's already a fantastic masterpiece in its own right) , Angelic Smile & probably even GRAND FINALE .
Regardless of which , I had a great time listening to B.R.Z ACOUSTIC EP & just like FIGHTERZ , it's not a full straight up acoustic album . They mixed various sounds in the songs such as pop , reggae , orchestra alongside with giving the songs cool acoustic treatments which're great .
I look forward to what the guys has in store next & if I'm going to be right on this , I think they might release a new single in July as they have did so for the past 2 July's so if this's going to happen again this year , then nothing will surprise me on this .
B.R.Z ACOUSTIC EP is in fact the 1st acoustic album that I reviewed in my music blog & I'm happy & honoured to have done so as there's always a 1st time for everything & like what I said , this's 1 awesome project that the guys have delivered .