Suna no Oshiro

Suna no OshiroArtist: Kanon Wakeshima
Release Date: November 12, 2008
Label: DefSTAR Records
Personal Rating: 4/5

1. Suna no Oshiro
2. skip turn step♪
3. Suna no Oshiro (Instrumental)
4. skip turn step♪ (Instrumental)
5. Suna no Oshiro ~Orgel Version~
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I have a feeling that all Kanon Wakeshima reviews will be completed soon….like tomorrow…

Anyways, Suna no Oshiro is her second single but with a more faster tempo. (Yes, her mysterious voice is still there…) It has the same elements as still doll; everything sinister from instrumentals to vocals. Everything. The end sounded like someone got turned into ashes or something. Good song but I just wished she mixed up somethings so that it wouldn’t sound similar to her first single.

The title, skip turn step♪ sounds something so un-gothic that it took me by surprise. Instead of gothic oriented instrumentals and vocals, the B-side takes on the positive mood. Her vocals not only sing on the higher pitch but the cello supports her somewhat “bouncy” voice by being “bouncy” as well. The song was quite unexpected which really makes me want to listen to more Kanon releases since her genre range could be really high.

Is it just me or Halloween has just left the house?

Personal Rating: 4/5

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still doll

still dollArtist: Kanon Wakeshima
Release Date: May 8, 2008
Label: DefSTAR Records
Personal Rating: 4.5/5

1. still doll
2. Kuroi Torikago
3. still doll (Orgel Version)
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Note: For fans of the Vampire Knight anime/manga series, here’s a review dedicated for you! I’ve only read the manga but I also heard that the anime and its theme songs were pretty good so I went ahead and listened to Kanon Wakeshima’s debut album, still doll and got a bit of a good impression about it.

So to suit the vampire setting, still doll happens to be the culprit behind the; as said by a couple of friends, “the best anime opening theme of 2008!” I’m not sure if I could agree to that since I really haven’t watched many animes last year but I will most definitely agree that this is one damn sinister song! I mean, Kanon plays the cello so mysteriously; that the flow of the song and her creepy vocals really match!

The B-side, Kuroi Torikago still includes her awesome cello in it except with the new mixture of beats playing in the background. I thought she also did a cool job with the sinister vocals.

The still doll (Orgel Version) actually sounded more scary than the original track since it’s pretty much all instrumentals. It’s that rewinding part that’s creeping me out…

Well, since Halloween is coming, I won’t grade down this cool single just because of its strangeness. I really like Kanon’s music since there’s nothing random and she’s off to a really great start!

Personal Rating: 4.5/5

CONNETTA

connettaArtist: Ami Suzuki
Release Date: March 21, 2007
Label: Avex Trax
Personal Rating: 4/5

1. Aozora to Water
2. Alright!
3. Peace Otodoke!!♥
4. Dancin’ Little Woman
5. Hare Moyou.
6. To be free
7. Squall ni Nurete
8. EVERYTHING TO me
9. O.K. Funky God
10. Fantastic
11. Crystal
12. Soremo Kitto Shiawase
13. Like a Love?
14. Aishiteru Kitto
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The only downside of this release is that there were so many singles released beforehand and it totally limits the amount of new songs…Since there are only three new songs, I did a track by track review for CONNETTA.

So there’s the three singles, Alrght!, Peace Otodoke!!♥ and Soremo Kitto Shiawase which all recieved pretty positive ratings. Both To be free and Crystal were released in a ballad oriented single called “Little Crystal” with an average rating. Fantastic was used as the title track from the second single of the era but also recieved an average rating.
Alright!, Hare Moyou., Squall ni Nurete and Like a Love? all recieved the higher marks.

Aozora to Water was one of the great starting tracks that Ami had since her days at Avex. It sets the laid back theme of the album. There’s also a little bit of the ballad-y touch which makes the song the more peaceful.

Dancin’ Little Woman is also a lighter pop track compared to her past album, Around the World. I kind of thought that the repetition was a little annoying and there were some sloppy parts. (It’s okay since it isn’t really that noticeable.) Dancin’ Little Woman was a good song but Ami can do better.

The last of the new songs is Aishiteru Kitto with a little bit of the tropical feeling. It’s not exactly trhe best ending track fro the album because it seems to focus more on the background effects then the actual song.

Overall, it’s an good album but I really think that she would do a better job with the trance and electronica genre. But ever since I listened to this album, some of the single releases began to sound better. Like as if her older songs grew on me when I listened to CONNETTA.

Personal Rating: 4/5

Fantastic

FantasticArtist: Ami Suzuki
Release Date: February 8, 2006
Label: Avex Trax
Personal Rating: 3.5/5

1. Fantastic
2. Slow Motion
3. Fantastic (Instrumental)
4. Slow Motion (Instrumental)
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Fantastic does include many of the trance/dance elements that Ami’s voice could really synch with. Plus her vocals were better supported by just the right arrangement. Even though, this is the second single of the “Connetta,” it beats “Little Crystal” by a landslide. Although it would have been nice for the arrangment to have some sort of…melody.

Seriously, when will the Ami ballads end? Slow Motion is literally what the title saids; it’s a very slow paced ballad that doesn’t really seem to be interesting. In fact, the foundation of the song is actually supposed to portray slow motion but it sounds more annoying than interesting.

Personal Rating: 3.5/5

DOLCE

DOLCEArtist: Ami Suzuki
Release Date: February 6, 2008
Label: Avex Trax
Personal Rating: 4.5/5

1. FREE FREE (AMI SUZUKI joins Yasutaka Nakata)
2. feel the beat (AMI SUZUKI joins Sugiurumn)
3. Potential Breakup Song (AMI SUZUKI joins Aly & AJ)
4. Bitter… (AMI SUZUKI joins S.A.)
5. SWEET DANCE (AMI SUZUKI joins RAM RIDER)
6. The WeekeND (AMI SUZUKI joins CAPTAIN FUNK)
7. SUPER MUSIC MAKER (AMI SUZUKI joins Yasutaka Nakata)
8. MUSIC (AMI SUZUKI joins RAM RIDER)
9. Stereo Love (AMI SUZUKI joins Tomoe Shinohara☆☆☆)
10. Ai no Uta (AMI SUZUKI joins ROCKETMAN feat. YOU THE ROCK★)
11. Futari wa POP (AMI SUZUKI joins Hoff Dylan)
12. Atarashii Hibi (AMI SUZUKI joins YO-KING)
13. if
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* DOLCE is mainly a colaboration album so there’s many songs the feature different artists.

FREE FREE (AMI SUZUKI joins Yasutaka Nakata) and SUPER MUSIC MAKER (AMI SUZUKI joins Yasutaka Nakata) were given high marks while feel the beat (AMI SUZUKI joins Sugiurumn) and the Potential Breakup Song (AMI SUZUKI joins Aly & AJ) was rated average mainly because her vocals didn’t match those from her older releases.

Bitter… (AMI SUZUKI joins S.A.) was probably the only slow tempo track but it’s my personal favorite tracks from the album! Even though Ami usually give bland performances when it comes to slower tracks, this one totally exceeded my expectations of it.

SWEET DANCE (AMI SUZUKI joins RAM RIDER), Futari wa POP (AMI SUZUKI joins Hoff Dylan), and Atarashii Hibi (AMI SUZUKI joins YO-KING) were mostly the mid-tempo tracks. Although some were annoying like Stereo Love (AMI SUZUKI joins Tomoe Shinohara☆☆☆) with all of the unusual pop-ish elements and the giggling, none of them holds a candle to MUSIC (AMI SUZUKI joins RAM RIDER)! Even though the song sounds different, I like some of the new elements that it presented.

The WeekeND (AMI SUZUKI joins CAPTAIN FUNK) and Ai no Uta (AMI SUZUKI joins ROCKETMAN feat. YOU THE ROCK★) were the more faster paced song. I would most definitely chose The WeekeND over Ai no Uta since YOU THE ROCK pretty much took over the whole song with his annoying vocals.

if is the only non-collaborated song on the album but at least it gives more than just the typical Ami vocals. It’s the perfect song to finish an album after listening to so many different collaborators during the first twelve tracks.

It was cool to see that Ami was trying out a new range of collaborators but I really didn’t like some of them. (My favorites were Yasutaka Nakata, RAM RIDER and S.A.) Much better than the first collaboration album!

Personal Rating: 4.5/5

HOME

HOMEArtist: Angela Aki
Release Date: September 14, 2005
Label: Sony Music Japan
Personal Rating: 5/5

1. HOME
2. Kiseki
3. Will you Dance
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On a Personal Note: Yes! Here’s the last of Angela’s singles! After this, All I have are three albums to review! (Which doesn’t take so long anymore.)

You might have noticed that this is Angel’s debut single since her hair looks so different. (But it still looks cute!)

HOME is pretty relaxing at the start of the song since it starts with her playing the graceful piano. But when her vocals came in, it was as if the song just suddenly gained more power. It’s a great song for relaxation since Angela could just hit those notes really well. Great A-side.

Aside from the more calmer tone used in the A-side, Kiseki takes on the playful mood and reuses the elements from HOME. It was great to hear the piano playing at the beginning again. I actually thought that this wasn’t B-side material since it really sounded high quality.

Finally, there’s Will you Dance with even more powerful vocals and instrumentation than HOME. To be honest, I thought that this was the best song of the single. It may not be as fast tempo but the voice and music quality was just “Wow.” Why weren’t all of the B-sides included as A-sides?!

Personal Rating: 5/5