Archive for the ‘ Kumi Koda ’ Category

Kiseki

Artist: Kumi Koda
Release Date: September 8, 2004
Label: Rhythm Zone
Personal Rating: 3.5/5

1. Kiseki
2. Love Holic
3. Life
4. Kiseki (instrumental)
5. Love Holic (instrumental)
6. Life (instrumental)
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Personally, I thought Kiseki was boring an emotionaless the whole time. Pretty much sounds like a generic ballad. I would probably skip this track.

Next up is Love Holic which was much more capitivating than the A-side. Although there was more energy in the vocals, the arrangement still seemed a little colorless but I did enjoy the song during my first listen. After listening to it once, I couldn’t get myself to go through the whole song again.

Finally, Life seems to be my favorite of the three tracks. There was a ncie feel to the chorus but the instrumentals didn’t really synch well with Kuu’s vocals. Maybe a little tweak would have made it sound better.

Personal Rating: 3.5/5

LOVE & HONEY

Artist: Kumi Koda
Release Date: May 26, 2004
Label: Avex Trax
Personal Rating: 4/5

1. Cutie Honey
2. The theme of Sister Jill
3. Yogiri no Honey
4. Into your heart
5. Cutie Honey (Instrumental)
6. Into your heart (Instrumental)
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The songs on this single was used on the movie “Cutie Honey” (Hey, I’ve heard of that one before) but uh… I’m kinda embarassed to post this kind of album cover on the blog. -______-

Oh well, Cutie Honey turns out to be a pretty cool track even though it was the cover of the actual theme song. It’s one of her cutesy tracks but this isn’t as bad as the ones she had in the UNIVERSE era. I thought this sounded better than the original.

The theme of Sister Jill sounds like a one minute monologue. But I won;t be too harsh with this song mainly because was a part of the movie. (This is also a shorter version than the one on the soundtrack)

Yogiri no Honey was an “okay” track. Theree’s nothing much to say about it except for the fact that there were some parts in the song that I liked but it sounded like it was being repeated a lot. (The dreaded word: repetition)

Into your heart is probably the best song on the single besides Cutie Honey. The instrumentals did a good job supporting Kuu’s strong vocals with the stand out chorus. I can’t believe that her singles were like this back then!

Personal Rating: 4/5

UNIVERSE

Artist: Kumi Koda
Release Date: February 3, 2010
Label: Avex Trax
Personal Rating: 3.5/5

1. Step Into My World
2. Can We Go Back
3. SUPERSTAR
4. You’re So Beautiful
5. Lick me ♥
6. Work It Out!
7. No Way
8. Stay
9. Comes Up
10. Physical thing
11. ECSTASY
12. UNIVERSE
13. It’s all Love! / Koda Kumi × misono
14. Alive
15. Moon Crying (Live ver. in Taiwan)
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I like this album cover, she’s like picking on the strawberry. Kind of reminds me of Across the Universe. I thought that the other cover (the one with her head shot and the weird nails) was nice too!

I have already reviewed: Can We Go Back, Lick me ♥, Physical thing, Physical thing, ECSTASY, It’s all Love! / Koda Kumi × misono, and Alive but they were all given average ratings.

Step Into My World was surprisingly an extended version of INRODUCTION TO TRICK, meaning the mood of the song was rather aggressive. Overall, it was okay but it wasn’t as mind blowing as the one on Trick. Work It Out! was also moderately aggressive. People said it was a good track but I just can’t get myself to like it. UNIVERSE also falls into this category but I’ll say that it’s one of a kind! (Also my favorite track from the album) This is truly the strongest song she’s sung in this era.

SUPERSTAR and Comes Up were the moderately aggressive tracks that had that cutesy feeling. They were both okay songs but a bit forgettable. (And tracks that I would skip listening to)

The ballad themed songs on the albums were You’re So Beautiful, No Way, and Stay. Out of all of them, You’re So Beautiful was probably the most elegant sounding other wise, No Way is the second favorite ballad and Stay sounded a little boring. At least Kuu did a better job with the ballads this time around!

Moon Crying (Live ver. in Taiwan) pretty much gets its own section main because it’s a LIVE version that plays for a whopping total of over seven and a half minutes! I thought this was much better than the original song.

Overall, there were a few good points on the album but most of the songs were average and forgettable. I wished UNIVERSE was longer, too.

Personal Rating: 3.5/5

It’s All Love!

Artist: Kumi Koda featuring Misono
Release Date: March 31, 2009
Label: Avex Trax
Personal Rating: 3.5/5

1. It’s all Love!
2. faraway
3. Tenbin ~Tsuyogari na Watashi × Yowagari na Kimi~
4. It’s all Love! (Instrumental)
5. faraway (Instrumental)
6. Tenbin ~Tsuyogari na Watashi × Yowagari na Kimi~ (Instrumental)
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(Note: just in case you didn’t know, Kuu and Misono are sisters. Yeah, seriously.)

As we all know, Kuu does more pop/R&B songs while Misono does rock. So if you combing those two genrse together, you get It’s all Love! a rather mushily and sloppily composed song. I’ll admit that there were some parts where I couldn’t tell which sister is singing but there’s also the fact that they do sounde well together… now only of there was a better arrangement…

faraway is soley sung by Kuu but it’s a pretty nicely done ballad. I liked how Kuu put some emotion into her vocals and how the instrumentation did a good job at backing her up. Otherwise, this is a ballad that seems “okay.”

I thought misono didn’t do well singing Tenbin ~Tsuyogari na Watashi × Yowagari na Kimi~. Her vocals in “It’s all Love! was actually the best I heard from her so far and her vocals here just didn’t cut it. I’m always wondering why she’s yelling sometimes.

Personal Rating: 3.5/5

3 SPLASH

Artist: Kumi Koda
Release Date: July 8, 2009
Label: Avex Trax
Personal Rating: 3/5

1. 9:00 A.M. [Intro]
2. Lick me ❤
3. ECSTASY
4. 12:35 P.M. [Interlude]
5. Hashire!
6. 4:20 P.M. [Interlude]
7. Lick me ❤ (Q;indivi-Yusuke Tanaka Remix)
8. ECSTASY (Caramel Pod E Remix)
9. Hashire! (420 Remix)
10. 12:00 A.M [Outro]
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Just for the sake of the many interlude, I’m just going to sum all of the instrumental tracks into one paragraph. 9:00 A.M. [Intro] is just random beats here and there, 12:35 P.M. [Interlude], 4:20 P.M. [Interlude], and 4:20 P.M. [Interlude] were just “there.”

Lick me ❤ turns out to be a highly cheerful summer song that turns out to sound a bit annoying. Kuu does a good job with all of the pop/rock vocals but the parts after the chorus was a bit out of place and the arrangement sounded a tad unoriginal. At least the Lick me ❤ (Q;indivi-Yusuke Tanaka Remix) sounded a bit better.

I just noticed that ECSTASY was a name of a drug (which I think has nothing to do with the song)… That aside, ECSTASY actually sounds decent with nicer vocals. It’s no TABOO but there’s some catchy chuncks throughout the song. The ECSTASY (Caramel Pod E Remix) wasn’t that good since there’s so much of the same words being repeated over and over again.

I wanted to point out was that Hashire! was just blaring guitars and a screaming Kuu. I was like “WTF is this” when I first listened through the song. Sure there’s all of the music components like the verses and chorus but the only thing I could pretty much remember from this track is the shouting. The Hashire! (420 Remix) really didn’t do that good of a job of improving the song. (More distortion than actual screaming.)

The only interlude that is probably worth mentioning is the 12:00 A.M [Outro] which actually sounded a bit decent. It’s not that good but it’s something that shouldn’t be grouped with those other interludes.

Personal Rating: 3/5

Alive/Physical Thing

Artist: Kumi Koda
Release Date: September 19, 2009
Label: Avex Trax
Personal Rating: 4.5/5

1. Alive
2. Physical thing
3. Alive (Instrumental)
4. Physical thing (Instrumental)
5. TRICK Live version (from TRICK Tour 2009)
6. Joyful Live Version (from TRICK tour 2009)
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I would usually say that Alive would be considered an okay ballad but since Kuu hasn’t really been releasing many ballads, I would think that this sounded quite beautiful. (Not to mention that this reminds me of 1000 no Kotoba from her very old singles) I’m totally in love with the arrangement because of the nice flow of orchestrated instruments and some flutes in the background. Too bad it was a bit short.

Next up is Physical Thing! I have to say that I actually thought that this track was very energetic – both the vocals and the R&B arrangement! I just have to say that hearing this song was very refreshing since her 3 SPLASH single didn’t really turn out well.

Just listening to both the live versions of TRICK and Joyful Ride reminds me that I still need to review her last album as well. (Well, I actually I need to review A LOT of her albums!) For both of them, I thought that the audience seemed a bit loud but the versions did give quite the performance.

Personal Rating: 4.5/5

Can We Go Back

Artist: Kumi Koda
Release Date: January 20, 2010
Label: Avex Trax
Personal Rating: 4/5

1. Can We Go Back
2. Good☆day
3. Can We Go Back (Instrumental)
4. Good☆day (Instrumental)
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On a Personal note: Lately, I’ve been feeling a bit unmotivated to get some reviews done so I’m kind of pushing myself to write some…. Anyways, here’s Kuu’s most recent single! Still trying to catch up with her releases!

I would first like to take a note on the cover: Kuu’s eye shadow looks grosser than the dirt. I specifically didn’t use the other single cover because of those long black nails. *yikes*

Kuu’s doing rock music? I thought she was a dance/pop singer? Can We Go Back sounds okay at the least. I’ll admit that her vocals were surprisingly powerful here but Kuu singing rock? At least this was much better than her last rock oriented track: Ningyo-hime. Now why does this song sound so familliar? This is a Kelly Clarkson song! (a cover song, in other words)

Good☆day seems really pop-ish and very cute. We’ve all heard a song like this from Kuu before but since this really brings me back to the days that I’ve listened to her older music, I’ll say that I actually liked this on the single.

Personal Rating: 4/5