花は桜 君は美し

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いきものがかり
[Ikimono Gakari]
花は桜 君は美し
January 30, 2008
Oricon
Daily Singles Chart: #5
Weekly Singles Chart: #7
February Singles Chart: #24
Sales Total: 29,261+ (6 weeks)
Epic Japan Records

~~~

花は桜 君は美し
[Hana wa Sakura Kimi wa Utsukishi]
[The Flowers Are Cherry Blossoms, and You Are Lovely]
Lyrics & Music:  水野良樹 [Mizuno Yoshiki] / Arrangement: 渡辺善太郎  [Watanabe Zentaro]

If Ikimono Gakari ever strays from their arrangement system, I will be very surprised. A lilting piano floats beneath Kiyoe’s powerfully beautiful vocals which carry a surprising amount of power considering her stature; she stands at only 5’3”. The song then brings in a soft guitar and then leaves the original piano line intact for a few measures before abruptly switching gears to their signature pop / rock sound. The acoustic guitar’s rhythm is really cool and it bounces betwixt an array of rhythmic instruments and even a very nice electric guitar solo near the bridge. At the bridge, more piano is used and creates a false ending and then heads right back into the fast section again. Kiyoe’s vocals are utterly flawless. She comes second only to ayaka in voice quality in the JPop industry, in my book, anyway. The melody is gorgeous, also, using their usual large intervals and complex melodic leanings. They have a knack for showcasing melodies and this is a prime example.

最後の放課後
[Saigo no Houkago]
[After School]
Lyrics & Music: 山下穂尊 [Yamashita Hotaka] / Arrangement: 中村太一 [Nakamura Taichi]

The second track is less inspiring, but still a good “disc-mate”. It uses an acoustic guitar and little else until the first chorus. The melody is, again, very pretty and Kiyoe’s voice is very emotive. Some interesting rhythmic instruments come in, namely a clave and a shaker (you know it’s like a wooden block and it has like metal mail around it and you twist your wrist). Anyhoo… It’s a good song. Nothing spectacular, as most B-sides are…

~~~

All in all, a really good single from Ikimono Gakari. My one, and continuing problem with this band is that their songs seem to fit a reoccuring arrangement. If you listen to them, you know what I mean. It is most drastically shown in the similarities between ‘HANABI’ and ‘SAKURA’, which I will review at some point. In the end…

A
96%

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~ by vinyabarion on April 29, 2008.

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