Review: (C81) 麻枝准 x やなぎなぎ – Killer Song

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This is a much anticipated album from C81. Everyone seemed to be talking about it. Hey, this is all about Jun Maeda, a multi-talented composer, lyricist and author, and yanaginagi, whose her sweet voice had sweetened Bakemonogatari and helped popularizing supercell to wider general audiences [citation needed].

My first impression for this album was that the album served as yanaginagi’s ‘revenge’ against supercell. Well, that’s certainly not true since yanaginagi’s career hasn’t faded at all. While the first track for the album shares superficial similarity with other supercell’s compositions, I don’t think the similarity resulted from a deliberate imitation. The album didn’t have much similarity with Maeda’s work in Angel Beats either.

The album kicks off with an upbeat titular song, which easily caught my attention. Its simple melody flows with ease along with a well-orchestrated ‘gig-friendly’ musical arrangement. From the musical style, I didn’t expect that the song was actually a Snow White-esque fairy tale, except that it had the gender role for the protagonists pair swapped. The second track, 「終わりの世界から」 (Owari no Sekai kara) follows the same upbeat style, about an unrequited love story. I haven’t understood the story yet since without dictionary, the lyrics are beyond my grasp.

「きみのairplane] (Kimi no Airplane) is a slow, piano driven ballad. While this is an excellent song on its own, it is easily shaded by the first two tracks, making it apparently inferior to the others. I began to fully appreciate the song only after I carefully listened to it several times. Usually, I like a mellow song faster than other songs in an album, but the lack of rhythm and the slow melodic movement made this song harder to enjoy after having myself immersed with more energetic music.

While some of my friends in my anime-otaku (sigh, I hate using that word) circle expressed their disappointment for the anticipated album, I found nothing in this album that fell short of my expectation. Perhaps, it was because I didn’t expect anything from the album at all. After all, I know almost nothing about Comiket and doujinshi scene of Japanese culture, let alone about this EP project. Still, I love this album. I like its easy-listening and well-arranged music. yanaginagi’s vocal fits well into the songs, telling the angst hidden deep within the easygoing beats. The only minus point is that the album doesn’t come with instrumental tracks.

Final Score: 7.5/10

Review: (C81) 麻枝准 x やなぎなぎ – Killer Song

What You See Is (Not Always) What You Get

Saya akan mengutip sebuah anekdot dari 9gag tentang seseorang  yang men-summon jin lampu, seperti ini kira-kira

Genie: Right, I’ve had a long hard day, so here’s the deal. I will grant you ONE wish. What’ll it be?

Wizard: Well, I’ve always wanted to go to Hawaii, but I’ve got a fear of flying. … I wish there was a bridge to Hawaii.

Genie: Are you kidding? That’s ridiculous! Think how much concrete you’ll need to reach the bottom of the ocean! Think of another one.

Wizard: Hmm… well I guess there is one thing I’ve always wanted to know. I want to be able to understand women. I wish to know what makes a woman happy!

Genie: ………….. So, about the bridge…

Tentu kita pernah bertemu seseorang yang sangat ramah, segera akrab dengan kita walaupun baru pertama kali bertemu. Tanyakan satu hal kecil, lalu pembicaraan mengalir begitu saja bagaikan kereta listrik melaju segera setelah meninggalkan emplasemen stasiun. Orang itu begitu hangat, seolah ia tidak menempatkan tembok penghalang antara dirinya dan orang lain.

Setelah pertemuan pertama itu semua terlihat lancar. Kontak via internet mulai terjalin, dan, dengan mudahnya orang itu memberikan nomer telpon selulernya, sesuatu yang kita seringkali harus berpikir dua kali sebelum memintanya kepada lawan jenis. Orang itu tidak merasa enggan merespon pesan, berbicara berbagai hal seolah ia adalah kawan dekat. Seolah.

Tetapi, di luar dugaan, ternyata ia punya batas kenyamanan yang ketat. Keramahan yang ditunjukkannya hanyalah kewajaran semata baginya, sementara pada saat yang sama ia masih menjaga jarak kecuali dengan sedikit teman dekatnya.

Sampai di sini, masih cukup wajar. Tiap orang punya caranya masing-masing untuk membuka dirinya dengan lingkungan.

Masalah muncul jika demi menjaga keramahannya itu, ia sampai mengatakan hal yang berlawanan dengan apa yang sebenarnya ia rasakan kepada orang yang membuatnya tidak nyaman. Ia tidak menunjukkan penolakan atas suatu ajakan, namun selalu punya alasan untuk mengulur-ulur waktunya. Pada kasus ekstrim, ia bisa saja menerima ajakan itu, namun pada saatnya ia akan menempatkan orang yang tidak disukainya itu dalam situasi yang sangat menyiksa, dan mungkin, mempermalukannya.

Saya sendiri tidak menganggap ia sebagai orang jahat. Mungkin itu adalah teguran setelah sentilan-sentilan tersirat yang diberikannya tidak digubris. Bagaimanapun juga, orang macam itu membuat saya takut. Entah apa yang bisa ia lakukan kalau kita sampai membuatnya benar-benar marah.

Not just an ordinary witch, indeed.

What You See Is (Not Always) What You Get

“A Human” To The Left Of “The Dream” *

It’s not that I’m brokenhearted. It’s just a bit saddening to recount what we’ve lost on our journey. Yeah, completely normal, you meet another people, and make your way through countless exciting adventures every single day, dropping and forgetting some as you walk further. Well, the same thing also happens to me, but you see, I didn’t make it as well as you did.

You are one of the earliest friend I’ve met on the internet. That was when we were still logging in into our Friendster account. That was when I needed to sit quietly on an internet cafe booth to get connected. Back then, my world was still shining with dreams, those bright days when daily lives as an undergraduate freshman felt like a great quest.

I met you on a forum. There, a cheerful high school girl wanted to start a music project. A piano duet. Without a second thought I offered myself, and we started messaging each other.

Well, since I was (and I am still) not a skilled one, I couldn’t give anything to the project. I had no idea what you were working on, and you never told me anything. You said something about the composition you were writing on, that you would send it to me once finished. In the end, I never got that said composition. We were just chatting, without actually working on our plan. Not even a slightest clue ever came to me, about the music you were working on. Maybe it was my total lack of musical skill that discouraged you, so that you decided to silently drop the project, while slowly stepping away from me little by little.

After that, I didn’t hear much about you. You gained popularity as a vocalist, while I lost my dreams and my shiny days. You engaged to a man, and me, I couldn’t even date a single girl. I don’t know how far you reach your dream now, but I pretty much realize that I’m in a downhill run of my life.

Having our paths (nearly) crossed at that point in our life makes me happy, yet there was something on it that gives me this deep sorrow, brings me on the verge of tears.

You were a part of my dream, but you’ll always be a part of my memories. You were an arc of my life which didn’t end in a true ending, but nevertheless, still a beautiful arc.

Dedicated to a certain singer-songwriter and pianist.

* にんべんに夢

“A Human” To The Left Of “The Dream” *

夏休みの終わり

No… not exactly summer break, just an ordinary semester break. Since I live near the equator, I don’t see such romantic things as graduation in spring, or White Christmas.

And so the semester break came, and now it will end soon. Two days from now I’ll go back to my rented room, and get ready for the new semester.

Again I tell you, not much happened during this one month break. Yeah, only a few,.such as the problem with my credit transfer from my former university, that caused several troubles for me and made me so upset that I smashed my camera cellphone right in front of faculty staffs (and now I’m back with my monochrome cellphone, no music player and no camera).

On the first days of the semester break, I went to HelloFest 8, that was the first major convention I attended. I brought along my dad’s old SLR with two rolls of black and white film. Hell yeah, first time I took photos in an indoor venue, without flash. From those two rolls, only one fourth are worthy enough to be displayed, the remaining shots are total fail.

To sum it up, this semester break just went away, almost without any gain. Maybe this is normal, one doesn’t simply become riajuuRiajuu is a result of long term effort to gain the best from anything we’re working on, and I wasn’t even in half-throttle mode the last six months.

Talking about ‘throttle’, I’ve got a job to translate a song for a fansub project. Somehow, the project didn’t flip my motivation switch and I’m taking it halfheartedly. *sigh*

A flag, and the start of a route?

On HelloFest 8, I met a Facebook friend for the first time. A girl. We seem to get along well, but I don’t know if this would be the beginning of a route. I don’t even know whether I’ve triggered a flag from her point of view.

Kouryaku, or just let possible chance fly away…?

夏休みの終わり