Friday, March 31, 2017
flumpool - Last Call
1) Last Call
2) Namida Reset
3) Kizu na Kizu
4) Last Call (Instrumental)
5) Namida Reset (Instrumental)
6) Kizuna Kizu (Instrumental)
Fanclub version has the same cover but different tracklist
CD + DVD
1) Last Call
2) Namida Reset
3) Kizu na Kizu
Bonus Tracks (all live tracks recorded from flumpool COUNTDOWN LIVE 2016→2017 「FOR ROOTS」 ~Shiroten ・ Fields ・ Forever~)
4) Hana ni Nare ; 1st track in mini album Unreal EP
5) MW ~Dear Mr. & Ms. Picaresque~ ; 1st A-side of 2nd single MW ~Dear Mr. & Ms. Picaresque~ / Natsu Dive
6) Taisetsu na Mono wa Kimi Igai ni Miataranakute ; 1st A-side of 11th single Taisetsu na Mono wa Kimi Igai ni Miataranakute / Binetsu Refrain
Last Call is flumpool's 17th single & it was released on 15th March .
This's flumpool's 1st single release of 2017 & Last Call was originally supposed to be released on 22nd March .
Last Call was picked to be used as the theme song for the movie Sakurada Reset : Zenpen/Kouhen .
Sakurada Reset : Zenpen/Kouhen is a live-action film adaptation based on a light novel series written by Kono Yutaka . It's directed by Fukagawa Yoshihiro , who is known for his Kamisama no Karute series . The story is about 2 high school students named Asai Kei (played by Nomura Shuhei) & Haruki Misora (played by Kuroshima Yuina) . Asai has an unique power to store memory while Haruki has the ability to reset the world in 3 days . Other cast members include Taira Yuna , Kentaro , Tamashiro Tina & Tsunematsu Yuri .
Last Call was written by vocalist/guitarist Ryuuta & composed by guitarist Kazuki . On this song , Ryuuta commented, "The theme is 'hope for the future' . I incorporated Asai's strength & fragility as he tries to search for the meaning of his past sorrows , while desperately trying to look for the answer he can only find in the future ."
Part one of the film opened in Japan cinemas on 25th March & the 2nd part will be released on 13th May .
Nomura Shuhei appears in the Last Call video as a special guest . He last appeared in flumpool's Mitsumeteitai video 8 years ago .
2 B-sides are found in Last Call . The 1st 1 Namida Reset will be used as the 2nd part ending theme song for Sakurada Reset : Zenpen/Kouhen while Kizu na Kizu was used in NHK's Minna no Uta for last & this month .
flumpool showcase their emotional side with the release of their latest single offering Last Call .
After releasing the EDM driven FREE YOUR MIND , Last Call brings back to a more old school mid tempo vibe of flumpool which also reminds me of some of their older works such as Frame .
Between both B-sides , I prefer Kizu na Kizu a bit more as it's upbeat while Namida Reset takes time to appreciate as it's almost 7 mins long so time duration wise , that might be a drawback for the song .
It reminds to be seen what flumpool will do next music wise but I will not be surprised if they will release a new album . And since they will be doing a tour in the last 4 months of 2017 , I think prior to that , it might happen if not I wouldn't mind another new single if not mini album .
Saturday, March 25, 2017
V6 - Can't Get Enough / Hanahirake
CD + VR
CD + DVD A
CD + DVD B
Can't Get Enough / Hanahirake is V6's 47th single & it was released on 15th March .
This's the group's 1st single release of 2017 & their last single release was last June's Beautiful World while their last double A-side single release was 2011's Sexy.Honey.Bunny! / Takara no Ishi .
Unlike Sexy.Honey.Bunny! / Takara no Ishi where only Sexy.Honey.Bunny! had a video made , this time round videos were made for both Can't Get Enough + Hanahirake .
The 1st A-side Can't Get Enough was used as 7net's Spring promotional song & it's described as a cool dance track .
Described as a joyful pop number , the 2nd A-side Hanahirake was used in the ads of House Foods' Tongari Corn .
2 B-sides are both only available in the CD only edition of Can't Get Enough / Hanahirake :
- Ashiato ; used in Prince Hotel's Winter theme ads . Beautiful World was last year used in Prince Hotel's Summer theme ads
For Can't Get Enough / Hanahirake , V6 has experimented with virtual reality for the 1st time . A CD VR version of the single is issued which will allow fans to download special content to a smartphone . By connecting the phone with a VR set , fans will be able to experience content as if they're physically there .
1 of the most respected senior Johnnys group finally released new material & after the awesome uplifting Beautiful World , I was hopng they could release another new single last year but to no avail .
Thankfully , Can't Get Enough / Hanahirake is quite a good single although for some reason/s , their double A-side single/s have been hard for me to like both A-sides equally as for Sexy.Honey.Bunny! / Takara no Ishi , it took me quite a really long time not to dislike Sexy.Honey.Bunny! .
Let alone for only dreaming / Catch , I like the 1st A-side a lot more than the 2nd A-side .
In Can't Get Enough / Hanahirake , I like Can't Get Enough slightly more than Hanahirake . The 1st A-side reminds me of a slightly less cheesy but edgy version of Sexy.Honey.Bunny! .
As for Hanahirake , I wasn't fond of the song initially but the video more or less changed my opinion on it .
All in all , I'm still glad that V6 is still going on strong & I do hope they can release a new album next as it has been 4 years sine they last released Oh! My! Goodness! .
Wednesday, March 22, 2017
Saito Kazuyoshi - Iden
Cover for both CD Regular & CD Limited
2) Ikisaki wa Mirai
3) Himawari ni Tsumoru Yuki
Iden is Saito Kazuyoshi's 46th single & it was released last month on 22nd Feb .
This's Saito's 1st single release of 2017 .
Iden was chosen to be used as the theme song for TBS's family comedy Gekokujo Juken that starred Abe Sadao and Fukada Kyoko . The A-side was specially written around the theme of the priceless love between parents & children .
2 B-sides are included in the single which both of them were released digitally last year .
Ikisaki wa Mirai was released digitally last year on 9th Sept . It was used as the theme song for the movie Cho Kosoku! Sankin Kotai Returns that starred Hey ! Say ! JUMP's Chinen Yuri .
The 2nd B-side Himawari ni Tsumoru Yuki was released digitally last year on 8th July & it was used to promote Shiseido's Snow Beauty 2016 Sakasa ni Furu Yuuki short movie .
Shiseido produced various short movies to coincide with the release of Snow Beauty III whitening face powder that was launched last year on 21st Sept .
Saito Kazuyoshi's latest single offering offers a mix bag of different music styles . I quite enjoyed both B-sides prior to them being included in Iden so I'm not so fussy about that and the A-side itself is quite nice too .
It reminds to be seen what Saito plans to release next but I think it's about time for him to release a new album as he last released 2 different albums on the same day 4 years back .
Friday, March 17, 2017
Kis-My-Ft2 - INTER
CD + DVD A
CD + DVD B
INTER is Kis-My-Ft2's 18th single & it was released on 1st March .
This's the group's 1st single release of 2017 & it's also their 1st triple A-side single even though 2 songs had videos made .
INTER covers the bases with a bright dance song , a love ballad & a positive medium-tempo number .
The 1st A-side Tonight is a dance song in which the video has a wild & sexy theme . Promo wise , it was used in the ads of Daiichi Kosho's LIVE DAM STADIUM .
Kimi no Iru Sekai is the 2nd A-side & it was used in the ads of Kowa's Hokkairo Nuku Nuku Toban . The accompanied video has a love & cute theme .
The last A-side SEVEN WISHES was used in the ads of JR Kyushu's Atarashii 7tsu no Nagasaki e KISS MY NAGASAKI & this song had no video made .
Zenryoku Fighter serves as the B-side in INTER & this uptempo track is only available in the CD only edition of the single .
Kis-My-Ft2 made a statement with the release of their 1st triple A-side single INTER .
I feel their previous single Sha la la☆Summer Time to be on the weaker side singles wise so luckily the group stepped things up with INTER .
The 3 A-side songs offered something for everyone but to me Tonight is no doubt the star of the single as it's a great mash up of FIRE BEAT , Another Future (visual/video concept wise) , Kiss Damashii & Gravity .
As for Kimi no Iru Sekai , the song & video is enough to rival/be on par with their senior ARASHI's One Love as Kis-My-Ft2 nailed every aspect of it downpat .
And I do agree that SEVEN WISHES should not get a video made as out of the 3 A-sides , this's the weak link while I find Zenryoku Fighter only a-ok for my liking .
Kis-My-Ft2's 6th album MUSIC COLOSSEUM will be released on 3rd May & all 3 A-sides will be included in the upcoming new album .
Saturday, March 11, 2017
Ken Hirai - Boku no Kokoro o Tsukutte yo
CD + DVD
1) Boku no Kokoro o Tsukutte yo
2) YUMING (CD Only Regular Track)
3) Ho~tsu (CD Only Regular Track)
Boku no Kokoro o Tsukutte yo is Ken Hirai's 41st single & it was released on 1st March .
This's Ken's 1st single release of 2017 & prior to the physical release , the A-side was released digitally on 22nd Feb .
Boku no Kokoro o Tsukutte yo was used as the theme song for the Doraemon Nobita no Nankyoku Kachikouchi Dai Bouken movie that opened in Japan cinemas on 4th March .
This's the 1st time Ken provided a song to be used to promote an animated movie .
2 B-sides YUMING & Ho~tsu are included only in the CD Regular edition of the single .
The 2nd B-side Ho~tsu was used to promote the ads of credit card company Credit Saison .
For some odd reason , when I 1st heard YUMING , I thought it reminds me of Ken's 24th Bye My Melody as both songs have the same happy go lucky upbeat vibes .
Whereas for Ho~tsu , it's a very simplified piano driven ballad . I was surprised to hear children's voices that partially sang with Ken as normally this tends to be heard in the background but not this time round .
Ken Hirai's latest single , the resonant medium-tempo ballad Boku no Kokoro o Tsukutte yo was written in mind by drawing inspiration from the irreplaceable bond between Doraemon & Nobi Nobita .
The previous single Mahoutte Itte Ii Kana ? was just Ken singing alongside with an acoustic guitar . In this case for Boku no Kokoro o Tsukutte yo , it's Ken singing together with a piano .
As such overall on all Boku no Kokoro o Tsukutte yo felt considerably mellow & calm as compared to Ken's past single songs like Plus One & Sore Demo Shitai which saw Ken go into experimental music routes that he never ventured before .
I only wished that Boku no Kokoro o Tsukutte yo B-sides were more experimental as I think they sounded a bit safe for my liking . Other than that , it's another good single song added to Ken's ever growing music discography .
Wednesday, March 08, 2017
CD Review :: GRANRODEO - Pierrot Dancin'
CD + DVD
1) Pierrot Dancin'
2) TRASH CANDY
3) Namida Bana
4) Kimi ni one way love
5) Nichijou Horizon
6) Owaranu Yume
7) Punky Funky Love [with FIRE HORNS]
8) Lovers High
9) Fake lover's true heart
10) FAT SHAPER
11) Shounen no Hate
13) UNDER THE SKY
Pierrot Dancin' is GRANRODEO's 7th album & it was released last month on 8th Feb .
The duo's last studio album release was 2014's Karma to Labyrinth . 4 singles & 2 B-sides are included in Pierrot Dancin' .
All songs in the album were written by vocalist KISHOW while all songs were composed by guitarist e-ZUKA .
Kicking things off in Pierrot Dancin' is the 1st album track that shares the same title as the album . Pierrot Dancin' (song) is also the only album track to get a video .
KISHOW sang Pierrot Dancin' (song) in the opening as acapella & then the track's melody changed to a full out aggressive no. which sets the tone on what to expect in the subsequent parts of Pierrot Dancin' (album) . You also can hear KISHOW's falsetto in the 2nd part of the song as well .
TRASH CANDY is GRANRODEO's 24th single & this was used as the opening theme song for the Bungo Stray Dogs anime .
Out of the 4 single songs in Pierrot Dancin' , TRASH CANDY is my favourite as GRANRODEO went all out in utilising lots of synthesisers . I normally don't like such songs but TRASH CANDY is an exception & it also has quite a dark gritty tone .
Namida Bana is the 2nd album track & it has a really cool Oriental feel introduction wise which carries on well throughout the entire song .
The next album track Kimi ni one way love is a lot more simplified in that it's a mid tempo fun upbeat song .
Nichijou Horizon was originally included as the 2nd B-side in GRANRODEO's 23rd single Memories .
Prior to hearing Pierrot Dancin' , I did not listen to any B-sides in GRANRODEO's past singles . I didn't quite like Memories but I enjoy Nichijou Horizon .
Owaranu Yume is 1 of 2 album songs that're ballads . This's also the longest song in the album . Frankly , GRANRODEO should do more ballads as Owaranu Yume is quite good despite the length , this I have no complaints over .
Punky Funky Love is GRANRODEO's 22nd single & this was used as the opening theme song for the Kuroko's Basketball anime .
In Pierrot Dancin' , this's tagged as Punky Funky Love [with FIRE HORNS] .
I like the original take of Punky Funky Love & the album version is interesting as it has a different melody which emphasised more on the funk aspect of the song .
Both versions are equally good & Punky Funky Love [with FIRE HORNS] has an edge or 2 over the single version .
Lovers High was originally included as the 1st B-side in GRANRODEO's 24th single TRASH CANDY .
Just like TRASH CANDY , Lovers High is also another synth driven song except it's less serious sounding & more groovy .
Fake lover's true heart & FAT SHAPER are the next 2 album tracks . Fake lover's true heart is 1 of my favourite album no.s as it's a really fun song .
Despite the questionable title , FAT SHAPER has great dynamics as the melody is very drums driven & strange as it's , this sounds like a very military influence no. .
Shounen no Hate is GRANRODEO's 25th single . This was used as the ending theme song for 2nd season of the Mobile Suit Gundam : Iron-Blooded Orphans anime .
Out of the 4 singles , Shounen no Hate is a mid tempo ballad & I like this a lot as it displays a more emotional mellow side of GRANRODEO .
Memories is GRANRODEO's 23rd single & this was used as the opening theme song for the Kuroko's Basketball anime .
Unlike the rest of the singles included in Pierrot Dancin' , Memories is actually my least favourite even though now I'm ok with it . Just that compared to the duo's past single songs , Memories had something missing in it (even though it's their best charting single to date) .
Concluding Pierrot Dancin' is UNDER THE SKY which's the 2nd ballad album track after Owaranu Yume .
UNDER THE SKY has a really dreamy feel & the only thing I don't like is when the song ended abruptly which's the same thing as what happened with Shounen no Hate . Other than that , it's a fitting song to wrap things up .
Overall , I have a lot of fun listening to GRANRODEO's latest album offering . This's the 1st review I wrote about them & I wanted to write about their past releases but I decided to start off with Pierrot Dancin' instead .
Compared to the duo's last album Karma to Labyrinth (which I did listened & I will write about it next) , Pierrot Dancin' on whole is a lot more fun , upbeat & uplifting . Some feel that this album has old school vibes which's not necessary a bad thing .
The 1 problem I had with Karma to Labyrinth was that its sound consistency was not there even though both the album & single songs were good . I don't have that problem with Pierrot Dancin' & I get nothing but good vibes in hearing the album .
The duo's 26th single Glorious days will be released on 22nd March & this was chosen to promote the Kuroko's Basketball LAST GAME movie that will open in Japan cinemas next Sat on 18th March .
On that note , Pierrot Dancin' is a record to check out if you're looking for some good 'ol Rock n Roll music to listen to .
Saturday, March 04, 2017
Hey ! Say ! JUMP - OVER THE TOP
CD + DVD A
CD + DVD B
OVER THE TOP is Hey ! Say ! JUMP's 19th single & it was released last month on 22nd Feb .
This's the group's 1st single release of 2017 & their 1st release in celebrating the group's 10th anniversary in the business .
The A-side was used as the opening theme song to promote the 2nd season of the Time Bokan 24 anime . It's the same anime that their 17th single Fantastic Time was used as its opening theme in promoting the 1st season of Time Bokan 24 .
OVER THE TOP once again demonstrates the group’s synchronicity with a dramatic dance . In addition , this energetic song conveys a powerful message of determination .
4 B-sides are available in total in the single . The 1st 2 songs are only available in the CD only edition of OVER THE TOP .
PARTY!! is an exciting electro house number while Our days is a medium tempo ballad .
Vanilla Ice is only available in the CD + DVD A edition of the single & this's described as a funk long song .
Funky Time is the last B-side & it's only found in the CD + DVD B edition of OVER THE TOP .
Unlike the other B-sides in OVER THE TOP , Funky Time has a video made & the last time the group made a video for a B-side song was for their 2011 / 7th single OVER (for Ai-ing -Aishiteru-) .
Hey ! Say ! JUMP kicks off their 10th anniversary year with OVER THE TOP which's overall a really fun entertaining release .
On 1st listen there's definitely music similarities between OVER THE TOP & Fantastic Time seeing that both songs are used to promote the Time Bokan 24 anime but OVER THE TOP still managed to stand out on its own . My favourite part of the song is the last part where they went all out .
The 4 B-sides in OVER THE TOP are equally good as well . PARTY!! & Vanilla Ice are the 2 standout tracks (I feel either 1 should have a video made instead of Funky Time) & I'm only a-ok towards Our days .
I didn't liked Funky Time at 1st but the video changed my perception on the song as it's a good contrast against the A-side .
All in all , OVER THE TOP is a solid single release & seeing that this year is Hey ! Say ! JUMP's 10th anniversary , I'm sure this will not be the last release coming from them .