Archive for the 'Preview' Category

Ayumi Hamasaki’s Rule [2/25/09]

So! Rule, the upcoming theme of the live action Dragon Ball Z movie, leaked in full. I must say that after efforts like “Mirrorcle World” and “STEP you,” “Rule” is surprisingly mediocre. The verses are alright, and the bridges are slick, but the choruses are pretty messy.  Ayu’s singing, or rather yelling all over the place.  Whereas I enjoyed that in “Mirrorcle World,” here it does little to improve the song. Despite featuring a refreshing change of pace in the rock instrumental (something Ayu’s been in dire need of), I can’t really recommend this song to anyone besides rock fans or Ayu lovers.

That said, I can’t wait for the other A-side on Ayu’s upcoming single.  A dancey pop tune is just what the doctor ordered!

84% B

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[News] Namie Amuro – New Look/Rock Steady/What a Feelin’ CMs UPDATED

60s Themed CM – “New Look”

Watch a HQ version here.

70s Themed CM – “Rock Steady”

Watch a HQ version here.

~Single Information~
Teamed up with Vidal Sassoon hair products, Namie Amuro is releasing a triple A-side on March 12th featuring musical styles from various decades: the 60s, the 70s, and the 80s (source). “New Look” features 60s pop, sampling one the Supreme’s most memorable hits, “Baby Love,” which is also one of Namie Amuro’s personal favorites. The song was produced by T.Kura & michico and exemplifies the bubblegum pop of the 1960s with a message about following style trends (source).

The next A-side, “Rock Steady” features 70s dance music with samples from Aretha Franklin’s “Rock Steady.” The song is produced by Muro & michiko, known for their work on Namie Amuro’s own Suite Chic. According to sources, this song strove to emphasize not only the 1970s funky dance, but also the empowerment of women that occurred at that time(source).

The final A-side, “What a Feelin’,” has not had its CM released to the public, but is known to be 80s music sampling Irene Cara’s “What a Feeling” and produced by Osawa Shinichi and michico. This is Namie Amuro’s first time working with Osawa Shinichi, which has resulted in a sound that embodies what popular music in the 1980s were all about: electronic dance(source).

In each of these three songs, Namie Amuro is taking old hits and making them into new, relevant J-pop. Popular trends from these decades being modernized will also play into the fashion CMs, which borrow footage from each of the PVs for each of the songs.

The planning and execution of this campaign are enormous in scale; the shooting for the 60s’ “New Look” PV was confirmed to have occurred in June of 2007, which suggests this campaign has been in planning for over eight months (source). Additionally, early efforts by the Vissal Sassoon ad campaign are huge, with use of widespread commercials, billboards, and more. Considering the scope of this effort and the success of Amuro’s most recent album, “PLAY,” this single is poised to be a success.

~Track Listings~
CD only (3 songs)
1. NEW LOOK
2. ROCK STEADY
3. What a feelin’
Price: 1,260 yen
Item #: AVCD-31394

DVD (From CD+DVD Version)

1. NEW LOOK (MUSIC VIDEO)
2. ROCK STEADY (MUSIC VIDEO)
3. What a feelin’ (MUSIC VIDEO)
Price: 2,000 yen
Item #: AVCD-31393/B

Thanks to NATE for the info, and catslaughing for translating the news articles.

Namie Amuro’s Official Site
Vidal Sassoon’s Website

[News / New Artist Spotlight] Kana Nishino – I (PV)

『I』西野 カナ (Nishino Kana)

The PV is particularly strong for a debut artist, with excellent effects and a dark, underwater setting. Despite a lack of choreography or dancing, the PV features a great wardrobe, great imagery and good direction: nary a moment is boring. When you mix captivating visuals with well produced sound, you come out with a a well rounded PV. “I” is a great debut, probably one of the best since JYONGRI’s “Possession.” Although Kana Nishino’s vocals aren’t particularly strong, the rock riffs and synthetic instrumentation work well with the layering to create a good song. “I” may be difficult to love first listen as it features harder, somewhat discordant rock, but the production and arrangement work well in the end.

Kana Nishino is an artist to look out for. Her debut single, “I,” will be released February 20, 2008. I’ll be sure to review the single around it’s release.

The Single Information / Cover:

aa.jpg
~Track Listing~
01. I
02. In Stereo
03. Just a friend

You can visit her official website here.

A big thanks to moviebuffwwc for the tracklisting and Lemonlime for the news.

[News] Stephanie – Friends PV

Stephanie certainly has rocked it up in her latest song, “Friends.” Much like her B-sides, this song depends on guitar riffs and ignores Stephanie’s whistle notes in favor of a fast paced song. Although the PV isn’t amazing, the differentiation of shots and the motion does help mix things up a bit (it is shot all in one room). Over all, not too bad at all.

Sorry about the video getting taken down. In the future, please comment if that happens.

[News] Utada Hikaru – Stay Gold -Radio Rip-

It’s nice to finally hear “Stay Gold” after waiting months. It’s premiere was originally in ASCIENCE hair-product commercials, but it was aired in an incomplete form.  Although this rip’s quality is low, you can hear the delicate layering, the piano, and Utada’s deep voice.  A nice soft A-side that sounds different from Utada’s other ballads, “Stay Gold” features a soft R&B edge throughout the verses.

[News] YUI – Namadairo Preview

YUI’s next single, “Namadairo” due out February 27, 2008, will be used in the drama 4 Shimai Tantei Dan. The youtube video above is our first look at the song. Right now, “Namadairo” sounds like something YUI’s released before, but still good. But before we post a full review, we’ll need to hear the whole song…

[News] Ayumi Hamasaki – Album Preview “GUILTY”

~Thoughts~
To be honest, my heart dropped when I heard these previews. There is one pop track on the album, besides “glitter,” and that’s “My All,” which doesn’t sound that good. I like Ayu’s rock, but I sincerely believe she needs to move away from it to get to the next level of her music, or her popularity will dwindle. I hope to see this album outsell “Secret,” but I wouldn’t be surprised if it didn’t. This album is rock and feels like “Secret” all over again, down to the glitter – My All vs. BLUE BIRD – Beautiful Fighters comparison. Then again, there’s some hope left; we haven’t heard the full album yet. I hope there’s more to these tracks then this. I really do.