Koda Kumi – Can We Go Back

September 19, 2010 at 11:53 AM | Posted in Koda Kumi | Leave a comment

SINGLE REVIEW
Koda Kumi – Can We Go Back

1. Can We Go Back
2. Good☆day
3. Can We Go Back (Instrumental)
4. Good☆day (Instrumental)

Can We Go Back is the 46th single by Japanese singer Koda Kumi, released on January 20, 2010, and the fourth single for her 8th studio album UNIVERSE. The single reached #2 on the Oricon Weekly Charts and sold 31,078 copies.

So yes I’ve been reviewing three Kumi singles these past two days, because I though I should work up to review UNIVERSE, and I’ve been wanting to do so for quite some time. So… Can We Go Back is actually a cover of the exact same song originally recorded by American singer Kelly Clarkson, only this features Japanese lyrics. I already knew that version and it was quite awesome, and I love both Kelly’s and Kumi’s songs, so I was very curious. What I knew as well, is that Kumi can do both R&B and rock songs very well, so this version of that heavier rock song isn’t that bad at all. Her vocals are very good, and some of her high notes as well, although sometimes it’s just around the edge…

Then Good☆day is more lighthearted and euphoric than the previous song, and it’s a sort of mixture between cheerful pop and dance with a lot of hot percussion, synths and even some chimes. This song is very likeable to me because of that happy boost it has, and it truly gives off that boost. Kumi’s vocals are top notch here, she hits all notes and never oversings her lyrics at all. Very good B-side to say the least.

So although the cover is gross as hell, the single surely isn’t! Both songs are very well done, and again Kumi shows that she has different sides and musical tastes as a performer. The first song is much heavier and maybe a bit melancholic, while the second song just blows away your fears with a lighthearted melody and cute music. I don’t think I dislike anything of the UNIVERSE era so far, sooo…. let’s just get on with the album next time, really!

Favorite tracks: Can We Go Back | Good☆day

OVERALL RATING

4 stars

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Koda Kumi × misono – It’s all Love!

September 19, 2010 at 10:53 AM | Posted in Koda Kumi, misono | Leave a comment

SINGLE REVIEW
Koda Kumi × misono – It’s all Love!
1. It’s all Love!
2. faraway
3. Tenbin: Tsuyogari na Watashi x Yowagari na Kimi (天秤~強がりな私×弱がりな君)

It’s all Love! is a collaboration single by Japanese singer Kumi Koda and her younger sister misono. The single was originally set to be released on March 4, 2009, but was pushed back to March 31, 2009. The single reached #1 on the Oricon daily and weekly charts.

What do you get when you mix two completely opposite family members together? It’s all Love! We all know misono is a true rock artist and Kumi makes more R&B and pop music, so… this is one hot mess of a song! It’s a heavy rock song, and maybe a bit similar to Kumi’s Ningyo-hime off her studio album Black Cherry (2006). Heavy guitars and synths are heard when the two sisters play off each other, and they do it in such a great way. I’ve never really LIKED misono’s vocals, but here she sounds as great as her sister, although Kumi will always sound better and a bit more mature. The random R&B dancebreak in the bridge is very smooth, and I remember there actually was a dancebreak in the PV. Break it down, Koda’s!

Each sister has a solo song on this single as well, and Kumi is first with faraway, a pop ballad with a lot of strings and chimes. The percussion has been kept very background-ish, so it’s heardly heard until the second verse. Thank god it got better with that part, because for me a Kumi ballad isn’t complete with a smooth fingersnapping beat! Her vocals are good, but I think they were better on It’s all Love!, because Kumi tends to get a bit over-emotional at some points, as in all ballads by the way. Love the synth part before the bridge! Pretty decent song, good B-side.

Oh gosh, misono on the move… I’ve never liked her voice, it’s so… I don’t even know! Tenbin: Tsuyogari na Watashi x Yowagari na Kimi (天秤~強がりな私×弱がりな君). Like her sister, she also recorded a ballad, an acoustic one with just a guitar. And how TERRIBLE this is! She just shouts out her lyrics and she makes me wanna jump off a building with this one!! Her vocals are even worse than ever, I don’t know how the heck that girl managed a fanbase! No offense to fans, but her vocals just ruin what might have been a good ballad because of it’s good melody! *mental breakdown*

So this just proved to me once again why I picked Kumi over misono. It explains all. The collaboration between the two of them was wonderful, a chaotic rock song with very good vocals and a lot of fun! I think I can’t even imagine how strong they felt while recording this together, but it shines through, definitly. Then Kumi’s solo ballad is decent, I thought it was pretty good for her but it could’ve been better. But hey, I don’t think we will EVER hear something like Ai no Uta again. misono’s ‘ballad’? Don’t even THINK about asking me about that mess…

Favorite tracks: It’s all Love! | faraway

OVERALL RATING

3½ stars

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