To be honest when I heard they were coming out with a new album I was just like, whatever. I think I bought their album last year but I didn’t really listen to any songs so I was lukewarm this time around. But during my purchasing spree at CDJapan (I got Momokuro – Z Otome Sensou, EXILE Tribe – 24karats TRIBE of GOLD, NMB48 – Virginity) I figure I should get it too.
(I really should get the NMB48 2-kisei Party ga Hajimaru yo DVD, but … I dunno. I haven’t heard anything about it. With Team N I heard that Yamamoto’s Bird was legendary, so that was why I got it.)
The first CD is all their singles + B-sides. I’ve heard them all before so I will focus mostly on the second CD. Note that if you’re expecting some sort of fair and balanced review… you’re not gonna get it. I focus on what I like.
1: Hate (Team A)
-Reminds me of Perfume for some reason. It’s kinda in that electric pop vein. I think I picked up some autotune sometimes too. Got some strange lyrics for a tune with a pleasant melody, it’s about how much a girl hates a guy because he keeps lying to her, but otherwise it’s a pretty decent song.
2: Plastic no Kuchibiru (Shinoda Mariko)
-Synthed voice. I had very little faith in Shinoda’s singing voice, and this does nothing to change my mind. For that matter I don’t think this song is very good either, feels like generic synth.
3: Omoide no Hotondo (Maeda Atsuko and Takahashi Minami)
-A really nice ballad, I’m loving it. Good lyrics. Ironically, my problem is that the vocalists aren’t that great. It’s hard to really describe but something doesn’t fit, it might be the falsettos. I feel like this song would be a good duet with a male and female… but I’m sure all the Acchan x Takamina fans are going nuts.
It’s also kind of a downer because I liked Takamina’s voice when I first started listening to AKB / No3b, but it seems to getting worse.
4: Iede no Yoru (Team K)
-Eh, sounds too generic for me.
5: Scandalous ni Ikou! (Ooshima Yuuko, Kojima Haruna)
-I really want to like this song, but the chorus is kinda weak, lol. Kojiharu’s voice shines though, and Yuuko isn’t bad. I’ve always liked Yuuko just as a straight celebrity as opposed to an idol and for some reason I just keep buying her stuff (Not Yet singles are awesome) and watching her dramas. Anyway, it has shades of Kuchibiru Furezu, but Kuchibiru Furezu is a much better song. But I still like it.
6: Nou Kan (Team B)
-Feels generic too. I guess I’m not a big fan of these Team songs because they use group sing and there’s no individuality projected when they should.
7: Abogado Ja nee shi (Watanabe Mayu, Sashihara Rino)
-This song… kinda works? It’s reminiscent of Matsuura Aya’s Momoiro no Kataomoi, and they sort of get the voice with some strange combination of Mayu’s extra cute voice and Sasshi’s plain voice. A decent song. But definitely not Momoiro no Kataomoi. (That was my jam when I was a Bemani player trying to learn Drummania 7th mix!)
8: Chokkaku Sunshine (Team 4)
-See Nou Kan and Iede no Yoru.
9: Bokutachi wa Ima Hanashiaubeki Nan Da (Itano Tomomi, Kashiwagi Yuki)
-A very nice ballad. A lot of people knock Itano for not being able to sing, but the more I think about it, it’s like a really unique voice that can be appreciated. Her falsetto is pretty nice when you get used to it. There’s something that sounds off, like they recorded it in different studios or something.
(If you can’t tell, I really like emotionally charged songs. Ballads are one of them.)
10: Sakuranbo to Kodoku (KKS)
-Not bad, I like the whole marching theme. Marching goes well with a group feel, I guess. I suppose there’s some irony that my favorite team song isn’t a real team.
11: Daiji na Jikan
-Sounds very graduation-esque.
12: Itsuka Mita Umi no Soko (Up-and-coming girls)
-Actually, this might be my favorite song on the album. It’s exciting, up-tempo and reminds me of Pareo wa Emerald. The lyrics are pretty plain but I like them. I like the Up-and-Coming girls unit too. It has Nana in it. And… Sugamoto Yuuko. I was just starting to know her =\
13: Goo Goo Onaka
-It’s a cute song… but I hate cute songs. Reminds me of like, the first Yasai Sisters song.
14: Yasashisa no Chizu
-Sounds pretty generic to me too. I guess you could make the joke that Chizu sounds like Chiizu. Then it would be “NICE CHEESE.”
-Hmm… a slow song, but I don’t really like it either. If this were a stage, I can imagine it being the last song before the encore.
16: Aozora yo Sabishiku Nai Ka?
-Another fairly generic slow song, don’t really like this one. According to the credits this has all the 48 groups. Dang, that’s pretty packed. If you know my hatred for big songs with little individuality and voices that melt with each other, well, this song is the biggest personification of that.
17: Sakura no Hanabiratachi (Maeda Atsuko)
-It sounds decent. It’s not the greatest sounding song. BUT IT’S THE FIRST AKB SINGLE, SOLOED BY ACCHAN. THE QUEEN GOING OUT WITH WHAT SHE STARTED WITH. If this doesn’t inspire any emotions from you and you’re an AKB fan, well, I dunno what to say.
Overall, I’d have to say that I really like “Hate,” “Omoide no Hotondo,” “Scandalous ni Ikou,” “Bokutachi wa Ima hanashiau Beki Nan Da,” “Itsuka Mita Umi no Soko” and the Acchan solo. “Abogado Ja nee shi” and “Sakuranbo to Kodoku” are marginally good… everything else I can’t say I’m a fan of.