CD Review :: BENI - Shiki Uta summer
Cover for both CD & CD + DVD
1) Summer Lovers
2) Natsu no Omoide
4) Eien marriage ver.
5) Baby Blue
8) OUR SKY
9) Zenryoku Shounen
10) Natsu ga Owaru Koro
Shiki Uta summer is a concept album by BENI & it was released last month on 29th June .
BENI's previous release was last Nov's Undress / her 6th album .
Shiki Uta summer has a theme of seasons & love and is the 1st album in BENI's 'Shiki Uta (Four Seasons Songs)' series .
The concept album's tracklist consists of 5 new songs , 1 re-recorded no. , 1 new cover & 3 tracks which already been released previously .
BENI serves as the producer while Dohzi-T supervised the production of Shiki Uta summer .
The 3 songs which were included in BENI's past releases include her 16th single OUR SKY , 18th single Forever & Zenryoku Shounen which's an English cover of Sukima Switch's 2005 single .
BENI's English cover of Zenryoku Shounen was 1st included as track #5 in her 3rd English covers album COVERS 3 .
New material are indicated in bold in the above tracklist .
Summer Lovers was picked to be used in the ads of LAZONA BARGAIN which BENI was appointed as a special supporter .
Prior to the physical release of Shiki Uta summer , Summer Lovers was 1st released digitally on 22nd June .
Summer Lovers is a fun cheery upbeat Summer inspired song that sets the tone of what to expect in the subsequent songs found in Shiki Uta summer . BENI wrote the song & she co-composed it .
Natsu no Omoide is the 2nd new song & this's an English cover of Ketsumeishi's 2003 single .
This song was 1st released digitally last month on 15th June . A video was made but it's not included in the DVD of Shiki Uta summer .
BENI is bilingual in both Japanese + English so you don't get any weird Engrish pronunciation from her & her English cover of Natsu no Omoide is quite ok but the video is what made it even better as it has an amusing plot accompanying the song .
Eien marriage ver. is track #4 & this's a re-recorded version of BENI's 14th single .
This track was 1st released digitally on 25th May . A lyrics video was made but it's not included in the DVD of the concept album .
I always have liked Eien so I have no problems with the new version and Eien marriage ver. emphasised the sweet wedding vibes a lot more than the original take of the song . Also the lyrics video is heartwarming to say the least .
Baby Blue & Hanabi are both the slower new material which BENI wrote the lyrics to the former . Baby Blue is a cool chilled out no. while Hanabi is a really nice ballad .
Hanabi was co-written by BENI & Dohzi-T and BENI had a hand in co-composing the melody as well .
Summer・Night・Fever is the next new song & once again BENI wrote the lyrics while she co-composed the melody with UTA .
For a song that's titled Summer・Night・Fever , it's surprisingly quite subdued compared to Summer Lovers . Nonetheless , it's still quite a good no. .
Natsu ga Owaru Koro is the last new song/track in Shiki Uta summer . Credits wise , BENI & Dohzi-T cowrote the song together while BENI co-composed the melody .
I think Natsu ga Owaru Koro is a fitting no. in concluding the concept album although some might feel it's a bit of a weak link but I personally like it so I don't have problems with it .
BENI makes a Summer comeback with Shika Uta summer which's her 1st release of 2016 .
Shiki Uta summer is an interesting BENI release as this's the 1st time for her to do an album that centres on 1 of the 4 seasons which's Summer .
As such , the structure of Shiki Uta summer is unique & cannot be compared with her past releases (be it studio albums and/or English cover albums) .
The new material in Shiki Uta summer is generally solid & have strong Summer vibes which's what the concept album is gear towards . Also it's great that BENI has a considerable amount of personal input that went into creating the new songs which's something worth commending .
For me I don't mind that BENI's past singles OUR SKY & Forever are included in Shiki Uta summer as I like them & to me OUR SKY is still BENI's best Summer single song to date .
Since it's mentioned that Shiki Uta summer will be the 1st of such concept album from BENI , I will not be surprised if she will do another concept album based on Autumn and/or Winter next .
In addition , if this quality of BENI's concept albums is just as good as Shiki Uta summer , then I don't see why she should not/will not do another 1 .
But for now , Shiki Uta summer is something worth checking out during the fun Summer season .