Fairies: Soushisouai☆ Destination

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Soushisouai☆Destination 4/5

This is a very powerful song that kind of sounds like a classic anime opening. Sounds like we’re all preparing for a battle. Along with the powerful sound comes some powerful vocals! I’m impressed at how more fair the line distribution is. Whoever sings those high notes at the end of the chorus… (Miki?) They aren’t bad but they do sound a little strained. Overall, this is a sold single showing Fairies more powerful side but don’t think I would rank this in my top 10.

Honey Vacation 4/5

The b-side is also really upbeat. It has a more sweeter sound to it. Instead of individual solo lines, the song is sung together as a chorus and shared lines, which I kind of like. This isn’t one of their best b-sides, but it’s nice to just listen to it. I do really like the instrumental of the song. In fact, I find myself focusing on that rather than the vocals. It has a lot of synth sounds in it. Also, I find the “Love you my Prince” in the beginning of the song really funny, but cute at the same time.

So I think that this single is a little weaker than their past, but it definitely isn’t their worst song ever. I really like how the group showed a more powerful side to them that we haven’t seen sing “Bling Bling Love.”

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C-ute: All 2015 Singles Reviewed!

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The Middle Management ~Josei Chuukan Kanrishoku~ 4/5

Here we have a fairly high energy song with pretty fun instrumentals. This song is Mai and Saki heavy thankfully! (They don’t get enough lines). I usually dislike auto tune effects, but this actually isn’t that bad to me. It adds a nice effects to their voices to make the song more dynamic. This isn’t a bad release for the group, but it doesn’t rank high for me.

Gamusha LIFE 5/5

This was the star song for everyone when this trio of songs were released which I can understand why. The song is light and cute, but without being overly cute and generic, similar to Iron heart. I love the chorus the best, but the other nice part of the song is after the second chorus. Instead of doing a music break and ending the song after the repeat of the chorus, the arrangers added this really cool rap part thing that builds up and just generates a lot of energy. This song makes me really happy, and it suits the group well.

Tsugi no Kado wo Magare 5/5

This is my second favorite song from the triple a-side single. Not only is the instrumental absolutely breathtaking and powerful with its touch of classical instruments, but the chorus and versus are pretty bada** This sounds like an epic action packed anime opening. Honestly have nothing to complain about here.

Arigatou ~Mugen no Yell~ 2/5

This is a semi-upbeat ballad. As inspiring as the lyrics are, I do find this song to be a tad bit boring. I find that with ballad’s it takes several listens before the song becomes catchy. I’m sure this song is like that.

Arashi wo Okosunda Exciting Fight! 4/5

This is a high energy song that has more of a rock vibe to it. Reminds me a lot of something Buono would do! I’m conflicted over this song. It’s not completely boring, but at the same time I feel like it isn’t anything special. This song really pumps you up and makes you feel motivated, which is the point of the song! It’s not bad, but definitely not going to make my top 10 c-ute songs.

So I feel like this was a good year for C-ute! I really liked the trio of songs that they released in the beginning of the year. Definitely felt super excited and proud back when these three songs were released. I feel like the last two singles were some of the weakest since 2013-2014, but they did carry very meaningful and touching messages.

PASSPO☆: Beef or Chicken?

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Honey Dish 5/5

Starting off the album is a high energy pop rock song. It’s a classic Passpo song, except it seems more cute somehow. I thought this was pretty generic before, but it is a really cute and catchy song once you listen to it more than once. The versus and chorus are pretty rockin. I love the English phrases throughout the song. Great way to open the album!

Itazura Rock’ n Roll 4.5/5

Another high energy pop rock song, though this leans more on the rock side! This clearly takes inspiration from American rock. The chorus get’s kind of repetitive in my opinion after a while, but I’m in love with versus: Mio sounds really cute at the beginning of the song.

Not in Theory 5/5

I love that passpo fully embraces rock, not just sticks with pop rock . This song is more darker than the group usually does; reminds me of songs like Wing and Baby Jump. My favorite part is at the end of the chorus where there’s that overlay of voices and the fade out, then Shiori’s part! I thought it was a great showcase of both her vocals and the songs’s innovation. Definitely impressed with this one.

Himawari 3.5/5

The song is classic passpo pop-rock. As much as I want to like this song, I feel as if it’s a tad too weak to be a single. It has a nice sound to it, but I feel as if the song is repetitive. I definitely don’t think this is their worse song, but it just isn’t as strong as their past singles.

Shiny Road 4/5

The beginning of this song is classic idol music. I almost thought I had the wrong group, but then the rock hits. I find this song weird because the group sounds like a regular idol group, but then there’s this hard rock background! It works, I’m digging this song. It’s cute, but the rock arrangement separates this song from being generic sounding. For some reason, the song sounds like a Momoiro Clover song, like some of the members sound like Ayaka and Kanako. This is goof for a b-side

Heaven’s Burger 5/5

The energy picks up again for this amazing number. Again, this song is a tad more cute and more “idol” than the group usually does, but again it works for them. I find the overall theme for this song super cute.

High Tension Emotion 4/5

Another pop rock song, but stronger on the guitar. I don’t have much to say about this song. I think it’s fun, and the “suki kirai?” “kirai suki?” parts are cute. Not my favorite song from the album but not bad either.

FAKE 5/5

Another more dark rocky song from the group! I like this better than Not in Theory, the chorus is stronger, though both are great. I love Shiori’s part near the end: “I’m Faking.” The buildup is great. This should have been Wing’s b-side!

Perfect Sky 4/5

This was released as a single. I think it’s a little weak to be a single. It sounds more like a b-side to me. I think the chorus sounds like something I’ve heard before, but the versus are good. This was the first song the group played as Band Passpo, so it’s nice hearing them play their instruments as a band to this.

You 5/5

We get back into the upbeat classic passpo pop-rock style. I don’t know why, but I absolutely adore this song. I find it super sweet due to the lyrics. The chorus is also really catchy with the repetition of the “Hey You”‘s. Near the end, I also really love Ai and Shiori’s solo lines. This song just has really cute nice touches to it, like the slowing down of Shiori’s line near the end.

Fairy Tale 4/5

Ending the album is this mid-tempo b-side. I quite like the versus of the song. The member that sings first, I think Nachuu, also has a really unique tone to her voice. The laid back instrumentals and the wind/air effects give this song a relaxing feeling. It’s fitting to end the album with this song, though I felt “I” did better to end the album in JET!JET!JET!

I’m pretty blown away by this album from the group! While Jet x3 had more of a hard, intense rock sound, passpo went more pop on this album, though still incorporating some hard songs. The group honestly continues to surprise me, and they are getting better and better with each release. Members even wrote the lyrics to many of the songs on the album, and they seem to be serious about their band thing as well.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Country Girls: Boogie Woogie LOVE / Ran Ra Run ~Anata ni Michuu~ / Koi no Magnet

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Boogie Woogie LOVE 5/5

When I heard this song, I was pretty much blown away from the start. Incorporating old styled American music is something new for the group that I never expected them to do.  This song reminds me of classic American swing music. It’s upbeat, jazzy, and the new members show that they really belong in the group!

Ran Ra Run ~Anata ni Michuu~ 5/5

This song is a cover song, but I never heard the original. This song goes back to the traditional Country Girls style of “cute” idol music. This song is so laid back and cute, I love the vocals of all of the girls, especially Manaka. The repetition of “Ra Ra Run” is what keeps me coming back.

Koi no Magnent 5/5

This song also surprised me! One, because it takes on a more serious tone, two because it sounds very 80’s inspired, and three because it has a slight electro feel to it with the instrumentals. I absolutely love the whispered “Shall We Love?” etc parts. I hear Chisaki heavily in these parts, and she sounds great. This is such a great song that never gets boring!

This is the group’s third single, and I continue to be blown away by this group. This single showed us that Country Girls is more than just a “cutesy” girl group. They explored two different genres of music while still staying true to their themselves. The two new members are a nice addition to the group, especially Funaki who is I can see becoming one of H!P’s vocal powerhouses like Airi, Sakura, and Sayubee.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Country Girls: Wakatte iru no ni Gomen ne / Tamerai Summer Time

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Wakatte iru no ni gomen ne 5/5

People often compare this song to itoshikutte. In my opinion, wakatte surpass itoshikutte for me! Wakatte is more upbeat and less repetitive. I like how the song tells a story with its speaking parts. When I first heard this song and it ended, I cried because the story was so cute and touching.  It’s refreshing. The play on “Gomen ne” from their first single is really cute as well. They even incorporate the hand movements from it. Chisaki still isn’t that good of a singer, but she’s cute and tries her best. Overall, probably one of my favorite Country Girl songs so far.

Tamerai Summer Time 5/5

Tamerai Summer is a sugary sweet song, but with a more laid back sound. This is a perfect blend of the old and new Country Girls style. The chorus is really nice . The girls sound so good singing together as one. My favorite part is at the end of the song when Chisaki sings “Darin Kamo ne?” Overall, this song reminds me of a relaxing spring day. It’s very pleasant.

Country Girls debut single was so amazing, it blew everyone out of the water. Due to this, I think that there was a lot of pressure for their 2nd single to be just as amazing. In addition, Uta left Country Girls. She was the most popular member after Momoko, so a lot of people were wondering how the group would function. This is definitely an amazing 2nd single for Country Girls. I like it slightly better than their first, and Uta’s absence isn’t really noticed. I think Country Girls future is bright, and they seem to be doing really well with their cute concept.

ANGERME: Nanakorobi Yaoki / Gashinsoutan / Mahoutsukai Sally

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Narakorobi Yaoki 5/5

When I first heard this song, I was blown away. This song is probably the group’s most epic, bad*** song to date. Everything about this song just screams “power.” The vocals are powerful and passionate, the instrumental is bursting with powerful sounds.  I love the repetition of the English translation of the song : Ups and Down, especially the end when they sing: “Life is full of ups and downs.” Even the MV is pretty epic! It’s dark tone matches the song well, and the choreography is smart. Overall, this is a pretty strong song for the group.

Gashin Shoutan 5/5

This is the more playful side of the single. Gashinshoutan is more upbeat and a little playful. It has a nice beat to it, keeping the song engaging the whole time. This songs reminds of a song kobushi factory might do because it has a lot of character to it, but ANGERME does quite well in this song on their own, especially with the vocals. The MV is a little weird because it seems dark and a weird contrast with the pastel color scheme, but the choreography is really fun and innovative.

Mahoutsukai Sally 3.5/5

This is a cover of a song, so you can’t really critique it too much. I’ve listened to the original and I think ANGERME does a really good job of making the song their own. I don’t hate this song, but It’s not something I would actively listen to. It’s like when MM did “Koko kara hajimaru” it was really cute and the song was catchy, but it lost its appeal not too shortly after. I guess I just don’t like anime tie-in songs??

 

After the masterpiece that was Taiki Bansei, I wondered what the group would release next. Nanaokrobiyaoki showed that the new members have great powerful vocals while Gashinshoutan was sillier and included more character. I think this was the perfect single to release after Taiki Bansei.

[On a side note, I hope to get back to reviewing music again! I haven’t been active on this blog, and since my taste’s have changed, I think its time to get back into it. hopefully I can still post often despite school and the busyness of life *sigh*]

 

 

4TE: Leave a Message

Leave A Message cover art

Leave a Message 5/5

US based jpop group 4TE is back with their second single, and boy did they start 2016 with a bang!

Leave a Message reminds me a lot of MORE, except it’s edgier, heavier, and more mainstream. The instrumental is fantastic, filled with interesting sounds to keep your feet taping and your head bobbing. I love the phone sounds at the start of the song. Chii sings the first line of the song, and her vocals are powerful and velvety. The chorus is amazing with the “ring ring ring” parts and the repetition of “Leave a message at the ring.”

The most impressive part of the song is Jenny and Chii’s raping. It’s explosive, it adds so much energy to the song. I love the sassyness of the girls performance during the rap part, as well as the mix of English and Japanese. Seriously, Jenny and Chii remind me of CL (From 2NE1) when they are raping their parts. Then Mei follows up with her amazing deep and smooth vocals in her solo after the raping part, and it sounds amazing. Micchi is also killing it with her lines, and I especially noticed that she was the best at facial expressions and performance.

Overall, this song is just so amazing, and it sounds like a whole other group. I could see this song being played in a dance club and enjoyed I’d sing this with my friends at karaoke.

These girls are seriously slaying, and I can’t wait to see what they do for the rest of the year

Please support 4TE!

http://4teofficial.bandcamp.com/album/leave-a-message

Watch the MV here

 

Juice=Juice: First Squeeze! (Disc 2)

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WONDERFUL WORLD & ca va? ca va?: See review here

CHOICE & CHANCE 5/5

This song’s instrumental is hardcore. Well, more hardcore than the group usually does. I love the instrumental, it’s so interesting. I love the girls all taking turn singing their short solo’s in the versus. The chorus is catchy and has a good rhythm. Most of all, I like Tomoko’s goodbye part! It sounds like some filter was put on Akari and Yuka’s vocals? Other than that, this is a solid song.

Ai ・Ai ・Gasa 5/5

This is a very happy and upbeat J=J like song. Love how the song starts out with the chorus, which is definitely the best part of the song with the repetition of the Ai Ai Ai Gasa part. The solo’s are on point, and everyone pretty much has an equal chance to sing. Love the ending part with the I love you…I want you…I need you which reminds me a lot of AKB’s Heavy Rotation.

Umaretate no Baby Love 5/5

Another upbeat song! Reminds me of ai ai gasa, except less dreamy. This song actually made me check out this album. I usually do not bother too much with album, but once I heard this song live, I had to. Overall, this is one of the best songs on the album to me.

Erabareshi Watashitachi 4/5

This song takes a lot to warm up to. It’s one of those “mature” songs that sounds generic in a way. but if you listen to it, it eventually sticks. Not sure I like those weird shouts in the versus. Also, despite Sayubee having the most lines, Yuka’s vocals fit this song the best. Not bad, but it took me too long to fully like the song.

GIRLS BE AMBITIOUS 4.5/5

This song has a lot of energy, I love it! The line distribution is extremely fair, and every member gets their own solo line. Love the chorus part where they sing “Yeah Yeah Yeah Girls be Ambitious.” This song would song great live, but seems to fall a little flat in this recording.

Ai no Diving 4.5/5

Another mature song, like Erabareshi Watashi. I think this song is superior to Erabareshi Watashi. It has a really interesting instrumental, and the chorus repetition of “Ai no Diving, yuukan ai no diving” is really catchy, along with the ending. Akari sounds amazing here as well.

Tick-tock Watashi no Shun 5/5

This is definitely the most fun song on the album! It has a fantasy-like feel to it. The members sing with a lot of emotion in the lyrics, and there are a lot of singing parts. The chorus is really fast paced, and it’s overall one of the best songs on the album that feels like it would be fun live too.

Mirai e, Saa Hashiridase! 3.5/5

Probably my least favorite song out of the whole album. It just sounds really generic, and the vocals sound a little strained in the chorus. I do like how they say their name at the end of the chorus, and the song gives off a feeling of a concert ending song or an encore. This will probably become their song.

Tsuzuiteiku STORY 4/5

The album closes with a ballad. I don’t think the group has done any ballad’s ever before, so for their first ballad, they hit the nail on the head. This song is nothing really special. In fact, it would be really boring, but the members have amazing strong and distinct vocals that really “make” the song. The versus are my favorite part!

 

So this is the groups first album! It took them many years to release one, but it was so worth it. H!P albums can be a hit or a miss, this one was definitely a hit. The new song’s were overall really great, and had diverse sounds.

SIlent Siren: 31 Wonderland

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Ring Ring Ring 4/5

At 0:15, this song kind of sounds too similar to Kimi wa Tenki, their other song. Other than that, this is a solid song. I love the “Hey, Hello, Ogenki desu ka?” part, because of the blend of English and Japanese. The chorus is catchy with the “Ring ring ring” part as well. Other than that, this song seems a little too similar to some of their other songs.

Biisan 4/5

The “Whoah oh oh” parts are really really cute and catchy. This song has a very summery and refreshing sound. The versus are really boring, but the chorus is solid. I don’t really think this is a strong single for them, but it’s a solid song.

Are You Ready? 4.5/5

This song takes on a much darker tone than most of their songs. I love the the interruptions with the vocals in the versus. I have no idea what they’re saying, but it sounds good. The chorus is really good as well. I love the whispered “Are You Ready” part. Definitely the best so far on the album.

LOVE FIGHTER 4/5

This is pretty average song. It kind of sounds like their past songs, but it somehow has a very calming and comfortable feeling? I like all of the chanting, it adds energy to the song. I think I prefer this over the a-side IxU.

Antionmy 4/5

The beginning of the song starts out great with the piano, then it feels kind of feels that part crashes too much with the rock sound. I do like the instrumental though, and some of the vocals have a filter applied, which sounds cool. Other than that, I just can’t seem to get into this song.

Delay 4/5

The instrumental has a cool rhythm to it, it’s not new, but it’s familiar, which I guess is why I like it. This song has a calming feeling, and I like the “sono kimi ga” part before the chorus.  Not a bad song, it feels like a solid b-side song or something.

I x U 3.5/5

Here’s a sort of christmasy ballad that was one of the groups singles. Suu’s soft vocals in this song are everything. It’s an okay song. Not really single material in my opinion.

Limited 5/5

I heard this song before I got this album. Basically, this song made me want to listen to this album. This song is darker, more so than “Are You Ready” , and I love it. Love the chorus with the repetition of words, as well as the “Semai semai sekai” part. One of the better, if not best songs on the album.

Milestone 4/5

Can’t be an album without a ballad! Here is the album’s ballad. I like the “kira kira hikaru” part of the versus. The chorus however, is quite annoying compared to the calmness of the versus. I don’t if it’s just Suu’s vocals, or if it’s the melody? It isn’t bad at all, but it’s definitely not their best ballad

Amefuri Frill 5/5

Here is a song that quickly became one of my favorites. It really stands out due to the pauses in the song and the variation in how the lyrics are sung. It sounds different from what they’ve done in the past, and it’s fun. One of the best on the album!

Guru Guru Wonderland 4/5

Here is the title song. It’s a really upbeat and happy song, perfect for ending an album. The versus are a little bland, but the chorus rocks. I love the “iin jan” parts, and the little chants. It has a lot of energy, but I just can’t love this song 100% no matter how many times I listen to it for some reason.

So… I wasn’t really feeling this album. In their past 2 mini albums, I liked 90% of the songs. This album, I can only say that I really fully like 3-4 of them. It isn’t a horrible album, but It just didn’t feel as good as their previous mini albums.

Fairies: Kiss me Babe/Hirari

Kiss me Babe 4.5/5

This song is so different than the group has done in the past. The instrumental has character, and I absolutely love Sora’s rap! It sounds really good. Even Miki get’s a line right before the chorus. In the recording, she sounds good, but live she’s screechy. The chorus is catchy and easy to sing. Near the end though, it kind of sounds a little messy, but other than that, this song just adds another awesome song to Fairies impressive discography.

Hirari 4/5

This song is more idol-y than ksb, but it has a very catchy and sort of flowy melody for the chorus. It sounds kind of dreamy, and feels like it would be a great b-side to “Hikari ni hate ni“. All of the members sing the chorus; always a plus. The versus are okay, but at least Miki get’s a lot of solo lines. I think the auto-tune is completely unneeded though.

Tokimeku Tokyo 4.5/5

This song seems very American/Kpop inspired, but somehow it still feels fairies-like. Feels like it should have been a b-side for BLING BLING love. I love the powerful chorus, with the melodies, and overlapping vocals. Though the rap near the end, not Sora’s rap, but the one before that sounds really really lame. The lyrics are just too typical. It’s not their fault though because whoever wrote this song isn’t writing it for native English speakers, but still. Also, this should have been the other a-side instead of Hirari because it’s so good!

So this single is just as sold as their previous one’s. It’s still very Fairies-like, but with trying a new sort of sound. I’m excited to review Soushisouai destination.