Music reviews: Boku no Lyric no Bouyomi, Blue Encount, ent, ONE OK ROCK, [Alexandros]

I did not expect such a diverse range of albums to be released in a single month. And it’s only February! I had no criteria for selecting these albums. Except for ONE OK ROCK (which I’ve been looking forward to since ‘Taking Off’) and [Alexandros], I’d never heard of any of these artists until end-December/early January. This humble blog hopes to showcase and review their latest … Continue reading Music reviews: Boku no Lyric no Bouyomi, Blue Encount, ent, ONE OK ROCK, [Alexandros]

『君の名は』”Your Name” Original Soundtrack review

For the longest time, I wondered why RADWIMPS’ music was never featured in any series. Since Order Made in 2006, they have released and marketed their music by conventional means, i.e. album/digital sales. The only notable effort  to break out of its mold was when vocalist Yojiro Noda embarked on a solo side project as illion and star in a live-action movie earlier this year.

But when the band announced its involvement in Your Name (Kimi no Na Wa 「君の名は」), the realisation hit me that this was RADWIMPS we’re talking about. If they wanted to write music for a show, they don’t just contribute a song as a main theme. They compose the whole thing. They become the composers and literally set the direction and tone for the entire run.

RADWIMPS as composers. And for an animated film by Makoto Shinkai (5 Centimetres Per Second; The Garden of Words) of all people. Of course. It all makes perfect sense. Continue reading “『君の名は』”Your Name” Original Soundtrack review”

RADWIMPS announces new album release in August 24

RADWIMPS has announced in an email newsletter today that its new album, “Kimi no Na Wa” (Your Name) will be released on August 24. The album title also happens to be the name of the theme song the band wrote for Makoto Shinkai’s latest animated feature of the same name. “School of Rock” will stream one of the tracks, 「前前前世」on July 5. Official site: http://radwimps.jp/discography/post_8451/Continue reading RADWIMPS announces new album release in August 24

J-music fixes that are not AKB48 (or similar)

Japan’s music industry is a contradiction that has as many creative people as it does tacky and full of fluff. There are many talented artists with an equally diverse range of tastes, genres, and styles. Surprisingly, discovering new music is still done through television music shows (like Music Station), interview spots, and as theme songs in anime, drama, movies, and commercials. For a country that aims … Continue reading J-music fixes that are not AKB48 (or similar)

Adele’s “Hello” (covered by Taka, ONE OK ROCK)

I’m not a huge ONE OK ROCK follower, but there’s no denying the band’s growing influence. Goose house is the only band I know that does covers really well, albeit Japanese songs. But because Taka’s English proficiency sounds more decent than most, I’m not surprised he would attempt this. I didn’t think he’d attempt Adele though. I certainly didn’t count on that. And in the … Continue reading Adele’s “Hello” (covered by Taka, ONE OK ROCK)

[Kumamoto earthquake] ‘by my side’ by yojiro x taka

A lot of things happened in the half year I was away… lost a colleague with no replacement, added workload, and a cancer scare in my family. I didn’t have it in me to blog here given the state I was (and still am) in. But I’ve started writing again, slowly, every day, with pen to paper. I was on my way to Kyushu – … Continue reading [Kumamoto earthquake] ‘by my side’ by yojiro x taka

Sakura Fujiwara – better than YUI.

Let’s conduct a blind test here. The following Soundcloud track is just a sample (1:40). but for now, switch your lights off (or close your curtains), lean back in your good chair, hit that link, and close your eyes.

That, my reader, is Sakura Fujiwara, a young girl from Fukuoka who’s just barely 19. This track comes from her debut album full bloom that was released in March 2014.

I hope you haven’t cheated and gone off to look for her pictures (because shame on you for spoiling the fun). But imagine the sort of person with the rich alto tone (she reminded me of Brooke Fraser in her early days).

Now this is who she is:

Continue reading “Sakura Fujiwara – better than YUI.”