Koda Kumi
January 28, 2009
Rhythm Zone

Kumi Koda has always been one for controversy. From rude comments on popular television shows to bottle-humping and homosexuality in music videos, Koda has led the charge in pushing the envelope. Sadly, TRICK her seventh studio album, is about as controversial as a paper napkin. With lackluster singles like MOON and stay with me, she is cementing herself behind a wall of boredom and in her line of work, she just cannot afford that. It is not that amazing when the best track on an album is the first one. It is amazing when it’s only a minute and seventeen seconds long. The intro features some utterly amazing minor harmonies and a beat to rival any hip-hop artist, but she seems to be having a problem following herself. The introduction for TRICK sets up a hell of an album, where that hell of an album ended up at on the other hand, I haven’t the slightest.

[TABOO] opens the album with a bright spot, the brightest spot on the album if all truth be told. Almost-dance-hit, [show girl], follows as the first non-single track of the album with an elephant whine and a Christina Aguilera’s Back to Basics vibe. Throwing in more synth and a barely memorable chorus, [show girl] disappoints from the beginning. Dull [Your Love] follows with barely a trumpet heralding and then we get mired into [stay with me], one of Koda’s generic ballads. The sticky beat of [This is not a love song] saves the first half of TRICK but only barely. Followed by this is the second best song on the album [Driving] and synth-tastic danceable tune that gives us what we expect from Koda. After finding ourselves hoping that TRICK is on the right track, she throws a horrendous song at us entitled [Bling Bling Bling]. As you can tell from the title, it’s about money. What you can’t tell from the title, or maybe you can, is that it sucks. Apparently her friendship with Fergie hasn’t resulted in a good dance song but this is a bad attempt at imitating [London Bridge], and I wouldn’t be flattered if I were Fergie. Speaking of which, Fergie shows up on the next track [That Ain’t Cool]. Koda Kumi only thinks she has equal billing in this song. She barely sings! She gets one verse and gets to sing backup during the chorus. The album continues down a dreary road with [Hurry Up!] and [Moon Crying] furthering it’s boring track listing.

[JUST THE WAY YOU ARE] is a ear-friendly song with a catchy chorus and pretty background of violins and synth. It’s upbeat, á la [恋のつぼみ] (Koi no Tsubomi). It’s an update that doesn’t sound rehashed, which is such a pleasant surprise from the Queen of Rehash. Very happy [Joyful] follows but it is a rehash (I spoke too soon…) of something like [WIND]. [愛のことば] (Ai no Kotoba) ends the album on a slow song but it is pretty at the very least and only slightly less boring than the three other ballads on board.

In short, TRICK is exactly as its name implies. The opening track tricks us into thinking this is going to be amazing, but then its ends up being something completely different and, unlike a trick, utterly unamazing.

Grade: 70%

Two and a Half Stars

P.S. On a side note, I can’t believe how funny it is that she called this album TRICK because that has such a funny, negative connotation nowadays. Shouldn’t Fergie have said something to her? Then again, knowing Koda… maybe she did know…

Straight from the Urban Dictionary: trick (n.) – just a straight up hoe

~ by vinyabarion on January 28, 2009.

4 Responses to “TRICK”

  1. […] [Blogs] Who’s Afraid of Music? on Koda Kumi’s TRICK TRICK […]

  2. I really dug this album. Much more than Kingdom, as a matter of fact. With the exception of Moon Crying, Ai no Kotoba and Joyful [and the disgraceful Venus, but that’s a bonus track] I think this is a great collection of songs. Bling Bling Bling seems to be completely a matter of personal opinion. It’s a hot mess, but I think that’s part of it’s charm. Hurry Up is jagged and rhythmic, and stay with me is enjoyable for what it’s worth. Kingdom was too full of mid-tempo snore-fests. TRICK, on the other hand, feels far more spiced-up.

    • Have you thought about blogging yourself? That more well written than mine… not to say mine is amazing by any stretch of the imagination… :D

  3. :o. This is a great album. U surprise me :o

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