11 September 2014

22 November 2013

Hiatus

Seeing as I'm pretty much overflown with school at the moment, and don't want to just disappear like that from the face of the Internet, I declare Japanese Melodia on hiatus. Not a particularly long one, mind you. I hope to see you soon!

9 November 2013

ClariS - Colorful

Mahou Shoujo Madoka Magica The Movie III : Rebellion OP

Tracklist:

1. Colorful
2. Surely
3. Pieces
4. Colourful - Instrumental -

1. Colorful

After a quick and playful music box intro, bells start off and unravel into a routine anison arrangement, complete with violins and acoustic guitars, with the bass quietly heard in the background, making the track a bit different from their usual electro-pop style. Fortunately, their vocals here are, instead attempting cuteness, more mature and deep sounding, like proper grown-up singers, but still provide energy to the catchy chorus. Although the song is a pleasant listen, and has a nostalgic tone to it, it's nothing special or quite original, and, in character, unfit for a series such as Madoka Magica (though, the problem with an unfit opening was present ever since the first anime episode).
Rating: 7

2. Surely

Clara's and Alice's vocals begin in unison, in a calm, broad arrangement, and becomes a song very similar to Colorful, except the focus is more on the acoustic instrumentals and the mid-tempo rather than full anison. With the song being relatively generic J-pop, the fact that it was a chore listening to it because it can be quite boring at times, and that there are very little differing elements to describe in the actual review, it doesn't earn any higher status than a scapegoat B-side.
Rating: 5

3. Pieces

Yet again, another completely unimaginative affair, barely differing from the previous two songs except for a slight change in the melody lines.
Rating: 1

I'm not having a fit of writer's block, but I am thinking of employing Konno's method for all such generic releases, since track-by-track reviews are almost always fruitless. As with livetune, ClariS will not get reviewed here anymore, despite the fact they get pretty big tie-ins.
My overall rating is: 4
Will I return for an another listen: No.

The comment box doesn't bite; be careful when feeding it, though.

6 November 2013

Minori Chihara - Kyoukai no Kanata

Kyoukai no Kanata OP
Kyoukai no Kanata IN

Tracklist:

1. Kyoukai no Kanata
2. NO LINE
3. Kyoukai no Kanata (Instrumental)
4. NO LINE (Instrumental)

1. Kyoukai no Kanata

Minori's calm, serene voice opens to an acoustic piano background, soon gaining a strong drum tempo and unraveling into a cheerful, laid-back arrangement. Including a violin in the chorus as well, which is actually the most active element of the instrumentation, it becomes usual anison with an added guitar solo near the end of the track. Unfortunately, except for the intro and outro, Minori's vocals are constantly under filters and with background, surprisingly varying in colour between soaring and powerful to cute and nasal, as they are not really the main representative point of the whole track. After quite an uncreative middle eight section with a very simple bridge, the final chorus is accomplished only by repeating the intro melody once again, with a prolonged ending annoyingly present, like in her previous single.
Rating: 7

2. NO LINE

A powerful pace suddenly appears, struggling to subdue the guitars and Minori under techno filters, until it explodes into the main melody. With barely anything else present, forceful, sometimes distorted guitars and drums are dominant, although the verse is calmer in terms of raw power, while the chorus is intensive, catchy and quite Faylan-like. Sadly, the second verse and chorus, with its many inappropriate  and uninspired variations feel unfit, and even the vocals seem worse and untrained after hearing the short version so many times. Opening the middle eight are alternating, distorted chords with Minori's vocals filtered up to obscurity, although, the only high point of it is another great guitar solo, until the song finishes off with yet another completely uncalled for elongation.
Rating: 6

A few mistakes here and there are allowed, but Minori's team lately seems to be continually (and intentionally?) making them, with either the songs getting too strained or too dull, constant excessive snippets in the songs at their end, and, overall making bad composure decisions and ruining a good song, as we can see in NO LINE. 
My overall rating is: 6 ½
Will I return for an another listen: Maybe.

The comment box doesn't bite; be careful when feeding it, though.

4 November 2013

ZAQ - Extra Revolution

Yuusha ni Narenakatta Ore wa Shibushibu Shuushoku wo Ketsui Shimashita OP

Tracklist:

1. Extra Revolution
2. Namida Note
3. Candy Rain
4. Extra Revolution (Off Vocal)

1. Extra Revolution

Chaotically disharmonic synths open the song, untangling in a really light, cheerful electronic-pop track. Even for a pop song, the instrumentation is surprisingly simple, with only a thin piano following one or two lines of synths, but perfect for the cute and upbeat melody. ZAQ's voice is, accordingly, much higher in pitch, and successfully avoids nasal channeling, present with many singers who badly attempt to sing like this. Although the arrangement somewhat widens afterwards, it still retains the same character for the remarkably catchy chorus, and the heavier middle eight section, with a trance buildup to another burst of liveliness.
Rating: 9

2. Namida Note

A single ambiental synth and drop sounds start off, with a piano joining in coupled with ZAQ's distant voice, and soon turbulently circulating into a mid-tempo track. Compared to Extra Revolution, the vocals are much deeper and more dense and expressive, also doubling as a support at the final chorus in a jazzy manner, which makes them even more enjoyable than usual. Only one listen will give the impression of your usual pop arrangement, although, when cleared up, the instrumentation is much more exotic, with quiet synths in the background following an acoustic guitar, all while the violin joins in the middle eight section to the slow, marching tempo. Namida Note is, with its laid-back tone quite relaxing, and is another great track.
Rating: 9

3. Candy Rain

Finishing up the single, an acoustic guitar once again starts, but this time in almost a dubstep manner, and as if it were a background to a rap song, until it unravels into another ambiental, deep and relaxing arrangement, but with ZAQ singing an unusual mix of silent and very cute. The combination of the two sounds quite J-pop and like something Perfume might release, but, unfortunately, it's not as inventive in its cuteness, although interesting rhytmic figures and chromatic progressions are stretched out through the whole track. With the melody lines being somewhat generic as well, I'm not a big fan of the third track overall.
Rating: 6

This time around, we get another great release from the singer who actually writes and composes her own tracks; a very rare thing in pop music, and succeeds in it. With several singles already out beforehand, I'm hoping for an album soon as well.
My overall rating is: 8
Will I return for an another listen: Yes.

The comment box doesn't bite; be careful when feeding it, though.

28 October 2013

GRANRODEO - The Other self

Kuroko no Basuke 2 OP

Tracklist:

1. The Other self
2. DAWN GATE "Unfinished"
3. The Other self [OFF VOCAL]
4. DAWN GATE "Unfinished" [OFF VOCAL]

1. The Other self

An abrupt twisting over the guitar tones quickly bursts into a cheerful rocky arrangement, unfortunately consisting of exclusively guitars, with not as much variety as Henai no Rondo has, but still well fitting for an anime like Kuroko no Basuke. As the guitars follow through the fast tempo, Kishow's vocals do it as well, being exceptional as usual, but still somewhat nasal occasionally, especially in the English-infused chorus lyrics and shouts. Most of the track is just something simply pleasant I wouldn't normally return to, but the remarkably fast, long and skillful guitar solo in the middle eight section saves the song, and builds up to the final chorus, ending with a prolonged uplifting melody piece.
Rating: 8

2. DAWN GATE "Unfinished"

The next track starts subdued, with only a single guitar in play until it gains a trance-like rhythm and a retro, melancholic guitar chord progression with a western melody, being very reminiscent of older rock music. Fortunately, Kishow's vocals are here much clearer and also somewhat deeper, even including some vibrato and varying between soft and deep colours, but, aside that, the only other thing particularly noticeable is a mixed up structure as far as verses and choruses go. Maybe it's just a matter of taste or the fact that it's not ani-rock in the rock subgenres, but this song still doesn't leave a particular impression on me.
Rating: 6

Fanservice anime like Free! and Kuroko no Basuke (no matter how much I do or don't like them as a genre) usually don't have artistically-oriented music, and that reflects in how The Other self is composed when compared to Henai no Rondo, and even DARK SHAME. Overall, it's not a bad release but I'm definitely looking forward to better.
My overall rating is: 7.
Will I return for an another listen: Probably not.

The comment box doesn't bite; be careful when feeding it, though.

22 November 2013

Hiatus

Seeing as I'm pretty much overflown with school at the moment, and don't want to just disappear like that from the face of the Internet, I declare Japanese Melodia on hiatus. Not a particularly long one, mind you. I hope to see you soon!

9 November 2013

ClariS - Colorful

Mahou Shoujo Madoka Magica The Movie III : Rebellion OP

Tracklist:

1. Colorful
2. Surely
3. Pieces
4. Colourful - Instrumental -

1. Colorful

After a quick and playful music box intro, bells start off and unravel into a routine anison arrangement, complete with violins and acoustic guitars, with the bass quietly heard in the background, making the track a bit different from their usual electro-pop style. Fortunately, their vocals here are, instead attempting cuteness, more mature and deep sounding, like proper grown-up singers, but still provide energy to the catchy chorus. Although the song is a pleasant listen, and has a nostalgic tone to it, it's nothing special or quite original, and, in character, unfit for a series such as Madoka Magica (though, the problem with an unfit opening was present ever since the first anime episode).
Rating: 7

2. Surely

Clara's and Alice's vocals begin in unison, in a calm, broad arrangement, and becomes a song very similar to Colorful, except the focus is more on the acoustic instrumentals and the mid-tempo rather than full anison. With the song being relatively generic J-pop, the fact that it was a chore listening to it because it can be quite boring at times, and that there are very little differing elements to describe in the actual review, it doesn't earn any higher status than a scapegoat B-side.
Rating: 5

3. Pieces

Yet again, another completely unimaginative affair, barely differing from the previous two songs except for a slight change in the melody lines.
Rating: 1

I'm not having a fit of writer's block, but I am thinking of employing Konno's method for all such generic releases, since track-by-track reviews are almost always fruitless. As with livetune, ClariS will not get reviewed here anymore, despite the fact they get pretty big tie-ins.
My overall rating is: 4
Will I return for an another listen: No.

The comment box doesn't bite; be careful when feeding it, though.

6 November 2013

Minori Chihara - Kyoukai no Kanata

Kyoukai no Kanata OP
Kyoukai no Kanata IN

Tracklist:

1. Kyoukai no Kanata
2. NO LINE
3. Kyoukai no Kanata (Instrumental)
4. NO LINE (Instrumental)

1. Kyoukai no Kanata

Minori's calm, serene voice opens to an acoustic piano background, soon gaining a strong drum tempo and unraveling into a cheerful, laid-back arrangement. Including a violin in the chorus as well, which is actually the most active element of the instrumentation, it becomes usual anison with an added guitar solo near the end of the track. Unfortunately, except for the intro and outro, Minori's vocals are constantly under filters and with background, surprisingly varying in colour between soaring and powerful to cute and nasal, as they are not really the main representative point of the whole track. After quite an uncreative middle eight section with a very simple bridge, the final chorus is accomplished only by repeating the intro melody once again, with a prolonged ending annoyingly present, like in her previous single.
Rating: 7

2. NO LINE

A powerful pace suddenly appears, struggling to subdue the guitars and Minori under techno filters, until it explodes into the main melody. With barely anything else present, forceful, sometimes distorted guitars and drums are dominant, although the verse is calmer in terms of raw power, while the chorus is intensive, catchy and quite Faylan-like. Sadly, the second verse and chorus, with its many inappropriate  and uninspired variations feel unfit, and even the vocals seem worse and untrained after hearing the short version so many times. Opening the middle eight are alternating, distorted chords with Minori's vocals filtered up to obscurity, although, the only high point of it is another great guitar solo, until the song finishes off with yet another completely uncalled for elongation.
Rating: 6

A few mistakes here and there are allowed, but Minori's team lately seems to be continually (and intentionally?) making them, with either the songs getting too strained or too dull, constant excessive snippets in the songs at their end, and, overall making bad composure decisions and ruining a good song, as we can see in NO LINE. 
My overall rating is: 6 ½
Will I return for an another listen: Maybe.

The comment box doesn't bite; be careful when feeding it, though.

4 November 2013

ZAQ - Extra Revolution

Yuusha ni Narenakatta Ore wa Shibushibu Shuushoku wo Ketsui Shimashita OP

Tracklist:

1. Extra Revolution
2. Namida Note
3. Candy Rain
4. Extra Revolution (Off Vocal)

1. Extra Revolution

Chaotically disharmonic synths open the song, untangling in a really light, cheerful electronic-pop track. Even for a pop song, the instrumentation is surprisingly simple, with only a thin piano following one or two lines of synths, but perfect for the cute and upbeat melody. ZAQ's voice is, accordingly, much higher in pitch, and successfully avoids nasal channeling, present with many singers who badly attempt to sing like this. Although the arrangement somewhat widens afterwards, it still retains the same character for the remarkably catchy chorus, and the heavier middle eight section, with a trance buildup to another burst of liveliness.
Rating: 9

2. Namida Note

A single ambiental synth and drop sounds start off, with a piano joining in coupled with ZAQ's distant voice, and soon turbulently circulating into a mid-tempo track. Compared to Extra Revolution, the vocals are much deeper and more dense and expressive, also doubling as a support at the final chorus in a jazzy manner, which makes them even more enjoyable than usual. Only one listen will give the impression of your usual pop arrangement, although, when cleared up, the instrumentation is much more exotic, with quiet synths in the background following an acoustic guitar, all while the violin joins in the middle eight section to the slow, marching tempo. Namida Note is, with its laid-back tone quite relaxing, and is another great track.
Rating: 9

3. Candy Rain

Finishing up the single, an acoustic guitar once again starts, but this time in almost a dubstep manner, and as if it were a background to a rap song, until it unravels into another ambiental, deep and relaxing arrangement, but with ZAQ singing an unusual mix of silent and very cute. The combination of the two sounds quite J-pop and like something Perfume might release, but, unfortunately, it's not as inventive in its cuteness, although interesting rhytmic figures and chromatic progressions are stretched out through the whole track. With the melody lines being somewhat generic as well, I'm not a big fan of the third track overall.
Rating: 6

This time around, we get another great release from the singer who actually writes and composes her own tracks; a very rare thing in pop music, and succeeds in it. With several singles already out beforehand, I'm hoping for an album soon as well.
My overall rating is: 8
Will I return for an another listen: Yes.

The comment box doesn't bite; be careful when feeding it, though.

28 October 2013

GRANRODEO - The Other self

Kuroko no Basuke 2 OP

Tracklist:

1. The Other self
2. DAWN GATE "Unfinished"
3. The Other self [OFF VOCAL]
4. DAWN GATE "Unfinished" [OFF VOCAL]

1. The Other self

An abrupt twisting over the guitar tones quickly bursts into a cheerful rocky arrangement, unfortunately consisting of exclusively guitars, with not as much variety as Henai no Rondo has, but still well fitting for an anime like Kuroko no Basuke. As the guitars follow through the fast tempo, Kishow's vocals do it as well, being exceptional as usual, but still somewhat nasal occasionally, especially in the English-infused chorus lyrics and shouts. Most of the track is just something simply pleasant I wouldn't normally return to, but the remarkably fast, long and skillful guitar solo in the middle eight section saves the song, and builds up to the final chorus, ending with a prolonged uplifting melody piece.
Rating: 8

2. DAWN GATE "Unfinished"

The next track starts subdued, with only a single guitar in play until it gains a trance-like rhythm and a retro, melancholic guitar chord progression with a western melody, being very reminiscent of older rock music. Fortunately, Kishow's vocals are here much clearer and also somewhat deeper, even including some vibrato and varying between soft and deep colours, but, aside that, the only other thing particularly noticeable is a mixed up structure as far as verses and choruses go. Maybe it's just a matter of taste or the fact that it's not ani-rock in the rock subgenres, but this song still doesn't leave a particular impression on me.
Rating: 6

Fanservice anime like Free! and Kuroko no Basuke (no matter how much I do or don't like them as a genre) usually don't have artistically-oriented music, and that reflects in how The Other self is composed when compared to Henai no Rondo, and even DARK SHAME. Overall, it's not a bad release but I'm definitely looking forward to better.
My overall rating is: 7.
Will I return for an another listen: Probably not.

The comment box doesn't bite; be careful when feeding it, though.