Sunday, May 07, 2017

CD Review :: Mika Nakashima - TOUGH

CD

CD + DVD

1) Hanataba 
2) Forget Me Not
3) Koi wo Suru 
4) Fighter (Mika Nakashima x Miliyah Kato)

5) TOUGH
6) Boku ga Shinou to Omotta no wa
7) Bill Kaze Swimming School Feat SALU 
8) MISSING YOU
9) Ai Kotoba
10) indigo 
11) Ai no Uta 
12) Best Friend
13) Gift (Mika Nakashima x Miliyah Kato)
14) Alone 

TOUGH is Mika Nakashima's 8th album & it was released on 22nd March .

Mika's last studio album release was 2013's REAL . In TOUGH , 6 singles (inclusive of 1 collaboration double A-side single) & 3 B-sides can be found in her new album .

Kicking things off in TOUGH is Hanataba which's Mika's 39th single . This song was used to promote Fuji TV's drama Otona Joshi & the song was written + composed by Tamaki Koji .

Forget Me Not is Mika's 40th single & it was used in the movie Boku no Tsuma to Kekkon Shite Kudasai . The warm yet sad ballad was written & composed by Momota Rui .

Koi wo Suru is Mika's 41st single & this was the latest single song included prior to the release of TOUGH .

Described as a vivacious uptempo pop number , Koi wo Suru was used in the ads of DHC's F1 Skin Care in line with DHC's F1 Skin Care's theme of "girl in love" . Lyrically , the song deals on the feelings of a girl in love .

Fighter is the 1st A-side of collaboration single Fighter / Gift . Both A-side songs are sung together with Miliyah Kato . Promo wise , this was used as the theme song for the Japanese-dubbed version of The Amazing Spider-Man 2 movie .

Sharing the same title as the album , TOUGH (the song) is mainly a rock driven number . It kind of reminds me of Mika's 34th single LOVE IS ECSTASY to a certain extent as both songs are in the same music genre .

Boku ga Shinou to Omotta no wa is Mika's 38th single . Mika approached amazarashi's Akita Hiromu for this collaboration as the track originally belonged to amazarashi . It's an important song to Akita because he's held onto it for many years . Mika , who received the demo from Akita , commented , "It's a wonderful song . I want this song to be heard until the very end . If not , [the full emotion of it won't be conveyed] ."

Bill Kaze Swimming School was originally included as the B-side in Mika's 40th single Forget Me Not . This was used as an image song for the mobile game Tsuioku no Ao & CM song for LINE MUSIC .

For this song , Bill Kaze Swimming School featureed rapper SALU & Mika commented that this track showcased listeners a new side of herself .

MISSING YOU was 1st included as the B-side in Mika's 37th single Ai Kotoba & it just so happened that the next track in TOUGH tracklist is Ai Kotoba itself .

Ai Kotoba was used as the outro theme no. for the Space Battleship Yamato 2199 anime . Both Mika & music legend Nakajima Miyuki teamed up for the 1st time in this song . Mika approached Nakajima about a collaboration with a "nothing to lose" spirit & the result is this stirring ballad that talks about a secret language that only two lovers share in which Nakajima wrote & composed Ai Kotoba .

indigo was used as the theme song for NHK's Indigo no Koibito drama . Out of all the new material in TOUGH , this is my favourite even though it's not exactly a new track as I've heard it last year even before it was eventually included in the album .

Despite this , I was glad to see indigo inside TOUGH because I wasn't sure if it would made the cut or not but luckily it did .

Ai no Uta was originally included as the B-side in Mika's 39th single Hanataba . This was used as the insert song for TBS's drama Omotesando Koukou Gasshoubu & Mika made a guest appearance in the 8th episode of the drama .

In Omotesando Koukou Gasshoubu , Ai no Uta is a song that has been passed down in Omotesando High School's chorus club . Instead of having the cast just sing it in the drama , the producer also wanted to use it as the insert song . Thus, he called Mika up to request her to grace the drama with her beautiful singing voice .

In the 8th episode of Omotesando Koukou Gasshoubu , Mika played a popular artist Kamishima Kana who is an alumni of Omotesando High School . With the members of the chorus club , she also sang a cover of BEGIN's Koishikute . This marked Mika's 1st drama appearance since 2010's Unubore Deka .

TOUGH (the song) is a rather aggressive song & in this case , Best Friend is the opposite as it's a cheery sounding track .

Gift is the 2nd A-side of collaboration single Fighter / Gift . Just like Fighter , this's also sung together with Miliyah Kato . & the song was used in TBS's CDTV .

Wrapping things up in TOUGH is Alone which was 1st included in SONGBOOK Amanojaku .

SONGBOOK Amanojaku is a hard copy book that was released last Oct . This release was to celebrate Mika's 15th anniversary in the business & it also included a CD . Alone was the only new song included in the disc & it was used as the theme song in Yomiuri TV / NTV's special drama Ai wo Kouhito .

Mika Nakashima expresses her mind & determination in TOUGH , her 1st studio album in 4 years .

It's a known fact that Mika doesn't tend to include a lot of new album material in her past studio albums & unfortunately or not , the same thing applies to TOUGH .

But in this case , I feel a bit short changed in listening to TOUGH as to me having only 2 new tracks (I don't count indigo & Alone in as I've already heard them before last year) after a 4 years waiting period doesn't feel satisfactory to me .

Prior to Mika releasing TOUGH , she released a few compilations which to me they were a bit redundant especially 2014's DEARS & TEARS .

I did not buy DEARS & TEARS as I disliked the tracklist(s) for both compilations and frankly Ai Kotoba , Boku ga Shinou to Omotta no Wa & Fighter / Gift should have been excluded in TOUGH as these single songs were already in DEARS & TEARS .

So to see them again in TOUGH , I'm not so sure if it's a good or bad thing . I rather Mika include more new album material instead but I accept that's not going to happen .

In the midst of releasing different compilation albums prior to TOUGH , I feel that aspect alienated many of Mika's fans . Some such as Zutto Suki Datta ~ALL MY COVERS~ & RELAXIN' had great covers/photoshoots but they could have been used to promote new singles instead .

End of the day , I want to see Mika's record label market her a bit better in the near future as in recent times , some of Mika's spark has been lost . The only good thing is that at least Mika is still active in the business as there was a period of time where she had health problems but luckily she turned out ok in the end .

That said , I hope I wouldn't need to wait another 4 years for another new Mika album .



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


# Aoyama Thelma's 6th album HIGHSCHOOL GAL , 250718 , Wed

# Saito Kazuyoshi's best album Utai 25 SINGLES BEST 2008~2017 , 250718 , Wed

# ARASHI's 55th single Natsu Hayate , 250718 , Wed

# KinKi Kids's KinKi Kids CONCERT 20.2.21 -Everything happens for a reason- DVD + Blu-ray , 250718 , Wed

# SID's SID TOUR 2017 [NOMAD] DVD + Blu-ray , 250718 , Wed

# Hey! Say! JUMP's 23rd single COSMIC☆HUMAN , 010818 , Wed

# SPYAIR's 22nd single I Wanna Be... , 250718 , Wed

# 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




Album Reviews


# Kis-My-Ft2 - Yummy!!

# NEWS - EPCOTIA

# FLOWER FLOWER - Spotlight

# Koda Kumi - AND

# B'z - DINOSAUR

# ARASHI - 「untitled」

# BREAKERZ - X

# Aoyama Thelmas - 10TH DIARY

# SPYAIR - KINGDOM

# SID - NOMAD

# V6 - The ONES

# Shota Shimizu - FLY

# Ken Hirai - Utabaka Dake ni.

# Acid Black Cherry - Acid BLOOD Cherry

# Kis-My-Ft2 - MUSIC COLOSSEUM

# Mika Nakashima - TOUGH

# NEWS - NEVERLAND

# 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

# MUSCLE ATTACK - HERCULES ROAD

# Aoyama Thelma - PINK TEARS EP

# Shota Shimizu - PROUD

# flumpool - EGG

# NEWS - QUARTETTO

# AKi - EPHEMERAL EP

# BENI - Undress

# SPYAIR - 4

# ARASHI - Japonism

# Aoyama Thelma - GRAY SMOKE EP

# ayumi hamasaki - sixxxxxx EP

# BREAKERZ - 0-ZERO-

# Domoto Koichi - Spiral

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

# Hey ! Say ! JUMP - JUMPing CAR

# Namie Amuro - _genic

# ayaka - Rainbow Road

# THE TURTLES JAPAN - ELECTRONIC HUMANITY

# ayumi hamasaki - A ONE

# Hilcrhyme - REVIVAL

# MUSCLE ATTACK - ATTACK

# Koda Kumi - WALK OF MY LIFE

# B'z - EPIC DAY

# Acid Black Cherry - L

# Kanon Wakeshima - Tsukinami

# NEWS - White

# FLOWER FLOWER - Shiki EP

# AKi - ARISE

# FLOWER FLOWER - Mi

# ARASHI - THE DIGITALIAN

# 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

# SID - OUTSIDER

# Shota Shimizu - ENCORE

# Hilcrhyme - FIVE ZERO ONE

# DAIGO - DAIGOLD

# Koda Kumi - Bon Voyage

# Tegomass - Tegomass no Seishun

# MUSCLE ATTACK - MUSCLE

# KAT-TUN - Kusabi -kusabi- EP

# ARASHI - LOVE

# Yamashita Tomohisa - A NUDE

# Matsushita Yuya - #musicoverdose

# JASMINE - Complexxx

# SPYAIR - MILLION

# BENI - Red

# ON/OFF - DICE EP

# NEWS - NEWS

# 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

# KAT-TUN - CHAIN

# 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

# YUI - HOW CRAZY YOUR LOVE

# Saito Kazuyoshi - 45 STONES

# Tegomass - Tegomass no Mahou

# SPYAIR - Rockin' the World

# BREAKERZ - GO

# ayumi hamasaki - FIVE EP

# B'z - C'mon

# School Food Punishment - Prog-Roid

# ARASHI - Beautiful World

# Aoyama Thelma - WILL

# Ken Hirai - JAPANESE SINGER

# 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)

# GLAY - GLAY

# Anna Tsuchiya - RULE

# NEWS - LIVE

# JASMINE - GOLD

# Domoto Koichi - BPM

# Aoyama Thelma - LOVE ! 2

# Hilcrhyme - Recital

# ARASHI - Boku no Miteiru Fukei

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

# YUI - HOLIDAYS IN THE SUN

# Hey ! Say ! JUMP - JUMP NO.1

# KAT-TUN - NO MORE PAIИ

# 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

# BREAKERZ - B.R.Z ACOUSTIC EP

# ayumi hamasaki - Rock'n'Roll Circus

# V6 - READY ?

# DAIGO☆STARDUST - HELLO CRAZY GENTLEMAN

# DAIGO☆STARDUST - The space toy

# Shota Shimizu - Journey

# Koda Kumi - UNIVERSE

# NEVER LAND - Beautiful Days EP

# abingdon boys school - ABINGDON ROAD

# BENI - Bitter & Sweet

# GIRL NEXT DOOR - NEXT FUTURE

# LANDS - Olympos EP

# flumpool - What's flumpool !?

# Kuroki Meisa - ATTITUDE EP

# Yusuke - Ano .. Konnan Dekimashita Kedo.

# KinKi Kids - J album

# Namie Amuro - PAST < FUTURE

# BREAKERZ - FIGHTERZ

# alan - my life

# LOVE - LOVE.IT EP

# B'z - MAGIC

# Dew - PRESENT

# 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

# YUI - I LOVED YESTERDAY

# YUI - CAN'T BUY MY LOVE

# BREAKERZ - BREAKERZ

# GIRL NEXT DOOR - GIRL NEXT DOOR

# GReeeeN - A , Domo. Ohisashiburi Desu

# YUI - FROM ME TO YOU

# GReeeeN - A , Domo. Hajimemashite

# BREAKERZ - CRASH & BUILD

# ai otsuka - LOVE LETTER

# Mika Nakashima - VOICE

# BREAKERZ - BIG BANG !

# 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 ?

# ARASHI - ARASHIC

# 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

# KAT-TUN - KAT-TUN III -QUEEN OF PIRATES-

# 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 !




Archives

# October 2006

# November 2006

# December 2006

# January 2007

# February 2007

# March 2007

# April 2007

# May 2007

# June 2007

# July 2007

# August 2007

# September 2007

# October 2007

# November 2007

# December 2007

# January 2008

# February 2008

# March 2008

# April 2008

# May 2008

# June 2008

# July 2008

# August 2008

# September 2008

# October 2008

# November 2008

# December 2008

# January 2009

# February 2009

# March 2009

# April 2009

# May 2009

# June 2009

# July 2009

# August 2009

# September 2009

# October 2009

# November 2009

# December 2009

# January 2010

# February 2010

# March 2010

# April 2010

# May 2010

# June 2010

# July 2010

# August 2010

# September 2010

# October 2010

# November 2010

# December 2010

# January 2011

# February 2011

# March 2011

# April 2011

# May 2011

# June 2011

# July 2011

# August 2011

# September 2011

# October 2011

# November 2011

# December 2011

# January 2012

# February 2012

# March 2012

# April 2012

# May 2012

# June 2012

# July 2012

# August 2012

# September 2012

# October 2012

# November 2012

# December 2012

# January 2013

# February 2013

# March 2013

# April 2013

# May 2013

# June 2013

# July 2013

# August 2013

# September 2013

# October 2013

# November 2013

# December 2013

# January 2014

# February 2014

# March 2014

# April 2014

# May 2014

# June 2014

# July 2014

# August 2014

# September 2014

# October 2014

# November 2014

# December 2014

# January 2015

# February 2015

# March 2015

# April 2015

# May 2015

# June 2015

# July 2015

# August 2015

# September 2015

# October 2015

# November 2015

# December 2015

# January 2016

# February 2016

# March 2016

# April 2016

# May 2016

# June 2016

# July 2016

# August 2016

# September 2016

# October 2016

# November 2016

# December 2016

# January 2017

# February 2017

# March 2017

# April 2017

# May 2017

# June 2017

# July 2017

# August 2017

# September 2017

# October 2017

# November 2017

# December 2017

# January 2018

# February 2018

# March 2018

# April 2018

# May 2018

# June 2018





Credits

designer - Chronicles

imageeditor - adobephotoshop

music - radioblogclub

image - fortminorwebsite