Jump to content
Sign in to follow this  
doombox

Recommended Tracks: July 2016

July 2016  

26 members have voted

  1. 1. Which songs did you enjoy this month?

    • "CALL" by スカート (Skirt)
      1
    • "秘密 (Himitsu)" by SUPER BEAVER
      3
    • "ACROSS" by 相川七瀬 (Aikawa Nanase)
      0
    • "Fake" by GOMESS
      1
    • "BABY, BABY" by TWEEDEES
      1
    • "カラーバリエーション(Color Variation)" by ケツメイシ (Ketsumeishi)
      0
    • "この世界が嫌いな人へ (kono sekai ga kirai na hito e)" by Develop One's Faculties
      8
    • "Water Lily" by illion
      2
    • "黒い虹 (Kuroi Niji)" by THE NOVEMBERS
      6
    • "SENSE OF ASH" by Insanity Injection
      9
    • "廻想ルナシエル (Mawarisou Luna Ciel)" by FerrisWheeL
      4
    • "desperate" by chariots
      4
    • "period" by ギルガメッシュ (girugamesh)
      8
    • "百鬼夜行" (hyakki yakou) by 己龍 (kiryu)
      9
    • "右手のナイフ、左手のヒス" (Migite no knife, hidarite no hiss) by SAVAGE
      3
    • "ぼくのことすき (boku no koto suki)" by クウチュウ戦 (koochewsen)
      3
    • "秋明菊 (shuumeigiku)" by 神はサイコロを振らない (kami wa saikoro wo furanai)
      3
    • "Métamorphose (LA VIE EN ROSE KAMIJO -20th ANNIVERSARY BEST- Grand Finale)" by LAREINE
      6
    • "Migimimi" by Migimimi sleep tight
      1
    • "NECRO" by MORRIGAN
      8
    • "Alaska" by South Penguin
      2
    • "ハイゼンベルク (heisenberg)" by ツヅリ・ヅクリ (TSUZURI.ZUKURI)
      3
    • "us" by Aimer
      5
    • "グルメ紀行(Gourmet kikou)" by 婦人倶楽部(fujin club)
      2
    • "Talisman" by Boris
      3
    • "LEM" by KEEL
      8
    • "詩踏み(utafumi)" by DIR EN GREY
      10
    • "One Last Time" by HONE YOUR SENSE
      3
    • "忌際(kisai)" by chariots
      4
    • "Nightcrawler" by OBLIVION DUST
      2
    • "100年前から、こんにちは。(hyakunen mae kara, konnichiwa.)" by Develop One's Faculties
      4
    • "人魚姫(ningyo hime)" by FoLLoW
      4
    • "斑(mura)" by Develop One's Faculties
      6
    • "Rx Overdrive" by Crossfaith
      2


Recommended Posts

tumblr_ob7mwbpI2q1rfey86o1_500.png

 

Recommended Tracks: July

 

Your friends on the Official Reviewer team are back with another month of tunes we have hand picked for you to jam to.

We hope you enjoy and let us know what you think!

 

 

@beni's picks

 

"CALL" by スカート (Skirt)

tumblr_ob7fy2k4yt1rfey86o9_1280.jpg

Simplicity can sometimes make a gem, and what do we have right here? One hell of a shiny one! The track may be painfully short, but it's one I never fail in returning back to now and then. With vocals that can be described as laid-back on almost the same scale as ASIAN KUNG-FU GENERATION'S Gotch, with a touch of melancholy especially due to the overall sound, this is one you can categorize as 'great indie goodness'. You'll easily recognize this track amongst any other, due to its opener of a single riff. The sprinkles of piano elsewhere, including a build up in its bridges makes this one a necessary repeater of a tune. Underrated is an understatement for this band!

Spoiler

 

 

"秘密 (Himitsu)" by SUPER BEAVER

tumblr_ob7fyyLC1h1rfey86o2_1280.jpg

Now this is just getting ridiculous, lads! You'll be appearing in our Recommended Tracks each month if you don't slow down any time soon! As I continuously MUST point out how SUPER BEAVER are getting better and better with each release, their singles and PVs continue to impress me as soon as I hit 'play'. Using a similar formula each time of quick but melodic vocal work against an instantly recognizable and complimentary beat, "Himitsu" is just as tastefully addictive as all their recent pieces. Fast paced, but exquisitely tuneful for exactly four minutes, it's a catchy and memorable ride, which seems to end all too soon! If you have yet to check them out, you must give them a try at least this once! And just for the record, the album that track appears on entitled 27 really deserves your attention too! These guys will not be halting their winning spree any time soon.

Spoiler

 

 

"ACROSS" by 相川七瀬 (Aikawa Nanase)

tumblr_ob7fy2k4yt1rfey86o5_1280.jpg

I must admit right here and now that you're not the only one missing out on this brilliant madam. I've known her name for the longest time but have never given her a listen until this single of hers, and oh, how late I am to the party! With one hell of a strong, melodic voice for a mainstream/major singer, against music done by L'Arc~en~Ciel's Tetsuya (yes, that's right, have I caught your ears now?), "ACROSS" is a delicious blend of pop rock. Nanase's stunning voice stands out even more due to Tetsuya's welcome involvement with the sound, and that definitely helps this song attract attention. What's even more of an attraction is the PV, filmed in gorgeous 360 panorama motion shots, which makes it a pleasure even to the eyes!

Spoiler

 

 

"Fake" by GOMESS

tumblr_ob7fx7oXm91rfey86o3_1280.jpg

GOMESS is one of my instant loves of this year, with "Fake" being the main culprit for this. As soon as I heard his music, what came to mind was a male rap version of Bonjour Suzuki, and early daoko. "Fake" is a tuneful lullaby track as you might have guessed with my artist examples. From just this one song, to the mini-album it appears on, GOMESS has skyrocketed up to being one of my favourite experimental rappers. As those who know me already, I'm not that much of a rap listener, yet I find GOMESS extremely special because I enjoy his music so much. This is not to be missed. This song, the mini-album, nor himself.

Spoiler

 

 

"BABY, BABY" by TWEEDEES

tumblr_ob7fyyLC1h1rfey86o1_1280.jpg

A very random but lovely find of this month is the jazz duo of TWEEDEES. If I had to be honest about me and jazz, I'd have to say I'm not the most favourable towards it save for certain groups (BLU-SWING and JiLL-Decoy Assocation), but when it's as cute and charming as this, who am I to ignore it!? Unfortunately unknown to the majority of us, TWEEDEES definitely deserve more fans who can kick back, appreciate and enjoy anything smooth, sweet and jazzy. It even has the approval from @CAT5!

Spoiler

 

 

 "カラーバリエーション(Color Variation)" by ケツメイシ (Ketsumeishi)

tumblr_ob7fx7oXm91rfey86o10_1280.jpg 

Talk about a match made in heaven (those clash of colours and awkward dance moves gets me every time)! Sounding exactly like how I'd think of Greeeen if they were an idol/dance boy group, this hip hop group of four (in fact) incorporates infectious rap and super pleasant singing in the chorus against the dancefloor (and even EDM) sound. This is definitely one of my guilty pleasure finds of this year (even that awfully cheesy music video is!), and I can't love it any more than I already do! If you're looking for something cheery now that we're coming to the chillier seasons, you better get up and moving to this! I know I can't stop myself!

Spoiler

 

 

 

@togz' picks

 

"この世界が嫌いな人へ (kono sekai ga kirai na hito e)" by Develop One's Faculties

tumblr_ob7fwnJCGG1rfey86o8_1280.jpg

Develop One's Faculties has always caught my attention with their unique sound in the VK scene. They never fail to incorporate quick and complex elements to at least one song per release. "この世界が嫌いな人へ (kono sekai ga kirai na hito e)" is a B-side off of their 4th single 斑 (mura). Though the song has a fast pace to it, Develop One's Faculties is able to accomplish layering smooth vocals over a funky slap bass line. My favorite part of this track is when the vocals and guitar work lift each other and reinforce this sort of staccato verse. It's a fun song that I would recommend to scratch the surface of this group.

Spoiler

 

"Water Lily" by illion

tumblr_ob7fx7oXm91rfey86o6_1280.jpg

illion is the solo project of Yojiro Noda (Vocalist + Guitarist of RADWIMPS). It's been just over 3 years since the debut album Ubu. Originally, an untitled release was due out for illion on the 20th of July, but that got pushed back until fall.  The sad news was remedied by the announcement of a new RADWIMPS album to drop. Despite illion's release being delayed, this amazingly interactive teaser went live and "Water Lily" became available in the Japanese iTunes store on July 15th. This is a very ambient, upbeat, and space-y sounding track but offers a strong melodic vocal line. If you need some great thinking music or something to tide you over until the new RADWIMPS release hits the shelf then "Water Lily" is a must!

Spoiler

 

 

"黒い虹 (Kuroi Niji)" by THE NOVEMBERS

tumblr_ob7fy2k4yt1rfey86o6_1280.jpg

Even with their new album release right around the corner, THE NOVEMBERS surprise listeners with a sudden digital single release. This song will be on the new album Hallelujah which will be released on September 21st. "黒い虹 (Kuroi Niji)" represents many sides of THE NOVEMBERS as it sways from an aggressive grunge sound and floating chants to up-front chaos as everything mashes together. Given the unique layering of harmonizing vocals, the chants/singing during the song is clash-y but pleasing. If you're just checking out THE NOVEMBERS for the first time, this would be a great song to start with in preparations for their anticipated release come end of summer. On July 20th a link to purchase the song through iTunes was made available through various social media outlets. From the looks of it this song is just a limited time release exclusively for the Japanese audience. 

Spoiler

 

"Rx Overdrive" by Crossfaith 

tumblr_ob7fwnJCGG1rfey86o7_1280.jpg

After the band's most recent album Xeno, I felt a little let down. While I understood the direction the album went in and how it was beneficial to utilizing all their members equally, I do feel they lost a little bit of their punch. Xeno was still an album that translated well to a live setting, but it lacked the heaviness that drew people in from the beginning. Aside from the visually pleasing music video, "Rx Overdrive" replenished the heavier factors that people craved to hear again. This song has satisfactory synth usage that doesn't take from the importance and depth of the percussion area. Whether you're looking to give Crossfaith a second (or third) chance or are just checking them out, "Rx Overdrive" is a great place to sum up their journey to this point. 

Spoiler

 

 

 

@tetsu_sama69's picks

 

"SENSE OF ASH" by Insanity Injection

tumblr_ob7fx7oXm91rfey86o7_1280.jpg

Hands down one of my favorite releases this year and a purchase I hardly regret every single time I hear this song. Granted, Insanity Injection has been met with mixed opinions, yet they always seem to strike it rich with me. "SENSE OF ASH" is a continuation of the chaotic hybrid that this band exists to be and does it so well. The haunting intro with light voiceover erupts into the unholy mess of screams from Kyouka and is spiced up with operatic vocals from Chaos. A cacophony of twisted guitars, heavy bass, noisy rhythm with an occult narration thrown in is a great treat if you're into dark and filthy sounding visual kei goodness.

Spoiler

 

 

"廻想ルナシエル (Mawarisou Luna Ciel)" by FerrisWheeL

tumblr_ob7fwnJCGG1rfey86o10_1280.jpg

You hopefully are listening to this treat of a song while you're reading this little blurb about its contents because I don't think I can completely explain how good this song is with words alone. FerrisWheeL is really underrated and should rightfully get more attention as their band continues on. They're also a pure example of the scene can still play "old-school" style visual kei and make it sound very unique in their own way. Maybe it's because the band is a wonderful collection of members from previous bands such as Crishuna, Cruicifixtion , and GRIST or that they're focusing more on making great music than just trying to sweep up fans by sticking to trends. "Mawarisou Luna Ciel "is a delightful listen and I do hope they continue with consistent music of this variety. This song is a a blast from the past and the opening guitar riff alone is enough to get almost anyone addicted to it.

Spoiler

 

 

"desperate" by chariots

tumblr_ob7fwnJCGG1rfey86o6_1280.jpg

The official return of chariots was definitely the hype train that I got on right away. I've always enjoyed the interesting evolution they've gone though since their start. Though, Kisai is a great release overall and is a refreshing continuation for the band since before they went on break to take progressive steps towards the style of heavier music. "Desperate" ended up being my favorite track from the single overall because I just couldn't resist putting the song on repeat. Perhaps it's the chugging guitars from KAZ, strong bass from Jin, perfect drumming from MIKAGE, and rough vocals from Riku that are an amazing mix that definitely comes together to make a stimulating hefty load of power metal. 

Spoiler

 

 

@emmny's picks

 

"period" by ギルガメッシュ (girugamesh)

tumblr_ob7fx7oXm91rfey86o2_1280.jpg

And here ends Girugamesh's legacy... the band responsible for getting a fair chunk of this forum into the j-rock scene throughout the better part of the past decade or so is over. It's worth noting how much of an influence they've had on the current scene (in case you're new), with their current output being ripped-off by the new visualcore bands and their mid 2000's material serving as a large influence to revival kei groups. After my first few listens of "period", I was entirely gobsmacked at how well they managed to combine their current slick yet brutal metalcore sound with the moody alt-metal atmospherics of their indies days. It doesn't entirely sound like a Chimera left-over, but "period" definitely borrows from its predecessor's theme of mixing old and new, bringing the concept to a fever pitch. The end result is a driving metalcore/djenty banger with ominous chord progressions, the standard anthemic chorus and interesting use of orchestral programming--up until 4 minute mark. The outro begins as ambient synths and piano underscore satoshi's distorted crooning, then suddenly everything drops out and a hellfire of grinding guitars and furious drum fills close the track while they glitch into oblivion. The curtain falls, applause, goodbye.

Spoiler

 

 

"百鬼夜行" (hyakki yakou) by 己龍 (kiryu)

tumblr_ob7fy2k4yt1rfey86o1_1280.jpg

BPR's flagship band return with their fifth full-length album Hyakki yakou, featuring a title track so good your eyes will probably water, your neck might snap and you will 100% be reminded as to why you ever liked the shit-show known as visual kei in the first place. Hyperbole? Absolutely. Kiryu deserve every smidgen of praise they get given how consistent they've been for the past 9 years. Year after year, they've been serving their signature mix of all things dramatic and neo-japonesque with a healthy dose of ADHD oshare fun and a kote kei lean ALL topped with sharp progressive tendencies. "Hyakki yakou" is a manic mix of everything Kiryu have ever done, but it remains fresh because of how brilliantly the song flows. The track opens with a wild piano riff and matching insane shrieks from Mahiro, the guitars duel in that signature late 90's staccato riffage under a soaring flute-sounding riff as Junji goes off on his drum set, not missing a beat or accent. All that said, this is just the first 30 seconds or so; "Hyakki yakou" is wildly textured in its arrangement, as typical of a band who pays abnormally close attention to detail. To spare you all a 3 page long in depth explanation of all the reasons why this song utterly slays, shut me up and just give it a listen.

Spoiler

 

 

"右手のナイフ、左手のヒス" (Migite no knife, hidarite no hiss) by SAVAGE

tumblr_ob7fy2k4yt1rfey86o8_1280.jpg

So I thought I was stanning trash last month with the VEXENT feature... but y'all underestimate my ability to literally swim in the dumpster of visual kei trash to pull out some more crap. Here comes SAVAGE to the rescue, the new band of ex-Depain members who are more known for having girls hawking over them than releasing anything of substance. But, there's a catch to this: SAVAGE's trash is occasionally amazing. As per Depain's discography, there are some surprisingly great songs here and there; nothing original, but definitely well-done heavy kei. "Migite..." is the best song SAVAGE have put out since "Biran", and probably the best song they've ever done. If there's one thing they do well, its creating a menacing atmosphere that few current bands can replicate. "Migite..." slinks around with its dark mood, further punctuated by the use of space in the song and Ryuka's eerie tone deaf robot vocals. A creepy music box interlude half way leads to an especially amazing fast section, driven by Takeru's ghostly seven-string guitar riffage and some great old-school blast-beats. "Migite..." is a fabulous throwback to when the height of heaviness was bands like Dio, NEGA, UnsraW, Awoi and -OZ-, back when visualcore had a bit more dirt on the surface. Despite all the trash I've talked about SAVAGE, this is not only an amazing track but ultimately a necessary throwback considering how sanitized the current scene can be.

Spoiler

 

 

 

@fitear1590's picks


"ぼくのことすき (boku no koto suki)" by クウチュウ戦 (koochewsen) 

tumblr_ob7fy2k4yt1rfey86o2_1280.jpg
Koochewsen has sky-rocketed to become a new favorite of mine. It appears that they're slowly weaning us off their extra progressive sound, but trust me, they're not boarding the shuttle to Genericville by any means. The PV track for their upcoming mini 超能力セレナーデ (chounouryoku serenade)  is a noisy helping of synthy power pop. I always appreciate a band that can fuse talent and a good sense of humor--a combination that they are currently killing. I know you love retro astronauts delivering an anthemic chorus in zero gravity just as much as I do!

Spoiler

 

 

"秋明菊 (shuumeigiku)" by 神はサイコロを振らない (kami wa saikoro wo furanai)

tumblr_ob7fx7oXm91rfey86o8_1280.jpg
Back in March, @saishuu introduced us to a very special band in the indie scene, kami wa saikoro wo furanai. Their polished math-rock riffs and warm, soulful vocals (pretty uncharacteristic for a scene dominated by high-pitched, shrill, and/or nasal singers) set them apart from the average newcomer, right from their first PV. For their aptly named debut mini-album, anfang (German: beginning), they've presented us with "shuumeigiku," which continues the gorgeous guitar work and soaring choruses. If you haven't checked out kamisai yet, now's the perfect time!

Spoiler

 

 

"Métamorphose (LA VIE EN ROSE KAMIJO -20th ANNIVERSARY BEST- Grand Finale)" by LAREINE

tumblr_ob7ixjWMQe1rfey86o1_1280.jpg
One-day revivals might be en vogue right now, but often they're just a last-ditch effort for old bands to make a quick buck. Rarely do musicians take this opportunity to go all out, but shortly before New Year's Eve of 2015, KAMIJO did just that. Playing a special 20th anniversary show, he brought all his past and current projects together into one mega-show. Of everything that went down that night, I think many of us were most excited to see LAREINE take the stage again.  While bassist Emiru has remained active (albeit, behind the scenes), we haven't seen or heard from guitarist Mayu or drummer Machi in around 10 or 15 years, respectively. To see the four of them so seamlessly pick up where they left off is just uncanny. They even played my favorite song, "Métamorphose"! Fortunately, the entire 'LA VIE EN ROSE KAMIJO -20th ANNIVERSARY BEST- Grand Finale' concert experience has been immortalized on DVD for all to see--an absolute must-see for KAMIJO fans of all eras.

Spoiler

 

 

"Migimimi" by Migimimi sleep tight

tumblr_ob7fy2k4yt1rfey86o3_1280.jpg
What happens when you blend 少年記 (shounenki) levels of melodrama with a cold hazy Instagram filter? Well, you get Migimimi sleep tight, a new project featuring Megamasso's Ryohei.  Anyone with some background in VK will probably agree that the band's visuals and sound are mind-boggling. Shouldn't you be dressed up like a revolutionary French aristocrat or in some kind of PVC outfit to be making those exaggerated hand gestures and reaching passionately toward the camera? Shouldn't your jovial extras waltzing through the forest be random melancholic white girls? Shouldn't that deserted cliffside beach be Lockheart Castle? In all seriousness though, the song is tight--it's just the incongruity of it all that makes it even more interesting.

Spoiler

 

 

"NECRO" by MORRIGAN

tumblr_ob7fy2k4yt1rfey86o4_1280.jpg
I haven't followed MORRIGAN, but they are my guilty pleasure for the month. This era of heavy 'neo VK' is generally not my bag, but every so often, a band hits all the cliches in just the right way and produces something totally solid. That describes "NECRO" to a tee. It starts off with a spooky carnival arrangement, which is easily a top 5 way to my heart. Then, it gets br00tal with some trashy harsh vocals. Following a by-the-numbers songwriting approach, there's even the obligatory sudden melodic chorus, but you know what? It's beautiful and I can't help but be drawn in by the gaudy drama of it all. #wiredforVK

Spoiler

 

 

"Alaska" by South Penguin

tumblr_ob7fy2k4yt1rfey86o10_1280.jpg
Following my disappointment with ミツメ's (mitsume) awkwardly funky A Long Day album, I had to look elsewhere for my sunny, laid-back guitar pop fix. Cue South Penguin's "Alaska," which is my official beach-kei recommendation of summer 2016. It's all here, from the jangly Mac Demarco-style riffs that are are gentle as the ocean breeze, to the vibrant bass licks that form the groovy backbone of the track. Subtle synths pulse in now and again to provide a touch of dreaminess, making this the ideal track for your summer strolls with your head carelessly in the clouds.

Spoiler

 

 

"ハイゼンベルク (heisenberg)" by ツヅリ・ヅクリ (TSUZURI.ZUKURI) 

tumblr_ob7fx7oXm91rfey86o4_1280.jpg
Combo breaking the shit out of my sausage fest of a list (sorry about that, btw), we have TSUZURI.ZUKURI. Discovered purely through the art of clicking through YouTube, this duo immediately grabbed my attention. ”Heisenberg" is a lavish composition, featuring angelic piano, sweeping chimes, dramatic strings, and skilled percussive work which is both delicate and epic--you'll hear what I mean. The true star of the show, however, is vocalist Mumu, whose ethereal range is truly a beauty to behold. With a multitude of mini and full albums under their belt, it'll take a while to catch up, but I'm excited to delve more into TSUZURI.ZUKURI.

Spoiler

 

 

 

@CAT5's picks

 

"us" by Aimer

tumblr_ob7fwnJCGG1rfey86o4_1280.jpg

Alongside the likes of supercell and EGOIST, I consider Aimer to be one of the reigning queens of the modern anison world. It's an area of music as oversaturated as any other, but Aimer stands out easily with her towering vocals and her top-quality collaborations with some of the finest composers in the field - Yoko Kanno and Hiroyuki Sawano to name a few. On her latest, double a-side single insane dream/us, she adds Taka (from ONE OK ROCK), and TK (from ling tosite sigure) to her list of  musical consorts. "insane dream", which was penned by Taka and also features him on vocals, is an instant banger and it was honestly difficult for me NOT to write about that song. But the TK-produced "us" takes the cake! It's epic pop-rock at its best - somber, atmospheric, and cinematic with all of TK's signature touches and Aimer's dramatic crooning operating in perfect harmony. TK hasn't written a song this good for himself OR his band in years. These two make a killer pairing, and I'd love to hear them work together again!

Spoiler

 

"グルメ紀行(Gourmet kikou)" by 婦人倶楽部(fujin club)

tumblr_ob7fx7oXm91rfey86o1_1280.jpg

Thank the universe for providing me with a keen musical network of friends. A pal of mine introduced me to this group recently, and since I haven't been exploring new music like I used to, and there's been almost no mention of this band through popular Western J-music channels, I would have completely missed out on FUJIN CLUB if not for his recommendation! I was specifically introduced to them through this song/video, and it was love at first listen. They have a very organic pop sound with bright melodies and crisp and colorful, classical instrumentation - somewhat similar to WUJA BIN BIN. "グルメ紀行" sounds like how watching a Ghibli movie feels. It's cozy, endearing, and pure, yet it evokes a sense of wonder and tugs at your imagination. Fantastic!

Spoiler

 

 

"Talisman" by Boris

tumblr_ob7fwnJCGG1rfey86o5_1280.jpg

You know a band has reached an unrivaled level of badassery when they can release a disc of bonus material that puts the actual albums of most other bands to shame. That's exactly what Boris has done. 10 years after the release of their classic, Pink, they've reissued the album as a deluxe version with a second disc titled Forbidden Songs. The bonus disc features nine previously unreleased tracks, and it fuckin' rocks. I mean, Boris practically piss quality music, so it's difficult as hell for me to single out one song above another. But since I have to pick, I'll go with "Talisman". It's an absolutely crushing stoner-doom number that harkens back to 2002's Heavy Rocks, yet is equally apt as an extension of Pink. If hard rock is your thing, then be sure to check out the deluxe edition in its entirety. If you're already a Boris fan, you won't want to miss any of the gems on Forbidden Songs either!

Spoiler

 

 

 

@Zeus' picks

 

"LEM" by KEEL

tumblr_ob7fx7oXm91rfey86o9_1280.jpg

KEEL is why I don't cry about disbandments anymore. When 9GOATS imploded and girugamesh hung up their hats, I was distraught...until this band rose from the ashes to scratch an itch those two could never get. It's a fusion of turn of the century nagoya kei with modern heaviness and sensibilities visual kei hasn't seen since the legendary deadman. With four of the most seasoned musicians in the scene, there's a lot to love about KEEL. I cannot deny how straightforwardly emotional their music is on their single Ugly duckling, and is how B-side "LEM" won me over; rhythmic bass, pounding drums, and the constantly shifting guitars are easy to get lost in. It's heavy without being distracting and the melody slides into semi-amorphic nagoya kei melancholy and song structure so naturally it's a little scary. The bridge and the chorus in particular send shivers down my spine when Ryo alternates between his crooning vocals, his rasp, and his normal range, showcasing his deceptively wide range and those trademark KEEL croons. You never quite know what's coming next until the end. I look forward to the day when KEEL announces a proper full-length album.

Spoiler

 

"詩踏み(utafumi)" by DIR EN GREY

tumblr_ob7fwnJCGG1rfey86o9_1280.jpg

Dir en grey drops the nuanced groove and focus on atmosphere for pure aggression and it's absolutely amazing. Distilling all the best parts of their last three albums into a three minute songs is a herculean task, but Dir en grey do it right. "詩踏み"'s loose structure takes a few listens to digest, yet it still manages to create a claustrophobic, religious experience with the atmosphere that keeps my ears glued to my headphones. The completely mental music video and their accompanying look has quickly become my favorite one of year, perfectly capturing the aggression, energy, and confusion of the song. If this is a sign that they've embraced their visual kei roots once more, this is one hell of a return! As we approach their 20th anniversary, "詩踏み" is a bold statement that Dir en grey isn't done yet.

Spoiler

 

 

 

@doombox's picks

 

"One Last Time" by HONE YOUR SENSE 

tumblr_ob7fx7oXm91rfey86o5_1280.jpg

Brutal metalcore? Deathcore? I'm not even sure anymore with all the labels these days, but I can tell you it's heavy and excellent. HONE YOUR SENSE never fail to impress with their releases and it sounds like upcoming mini album will pack quite a punch if "One Last Time" is any indicator, which I am positive it is. The song is fast and furious, yet clear enough for all of the technical guitarwork and lightning speed drum fills to have equal footing. It's the kind of thrill ride only HYS is capable of giving you and if you haven't checked them out yet, I highly encourage that you do so!

Spoiler

 

 

"忌際(kisai)" by chariots

tumblr_ob7fwnJCGG1rfey86o6_1280.jpg

When the return of chariots was announced I took my time getting around to catching up with them. I half expected more of their previous melodic style heavily laden with the usual visual kei tropes. Color me surprised when I checked out their latest release and was, quite frankly, blown away. I would have never expected a heavier, more orchestral turn towards power metal. But stepping outside of the box is exactly what the doctor ordered. And while Riku may have kept most of the spotlight for himself in the previous incarnation of chariots, taking a chance to let everyone else shine only brings up his own caliber of vocal delivery to meet them this time around.

Spoiler

 

"Nightcrawler" by OBLIVION DUST

tumblr_ob7fy2k4yt1rfey86o7_1280.jpg

Four years is much too long to go between OBLIVION DUST releases. VAMPS and FAKE? are just no substitution for the original, as fun as they may be. And the trio are back to their old tricks (and a couple of new ones) on the most recent release DIRT this month which had a surprisingly quiet release. The songs are more of what we have come to expect from OBLIVION DUST's electronically-charged industrial rock with Ken Lloyd's signature whine. "Nightcrawler" follows suit and serves as a great introduction for newcomers and a fun romp for die hard fans as well!

Spoiler

 

 

 

 

Guest Reviews

 

@chemicalpictures' picks

 

"100年前から、こんにちは。(hyakunen mae kara, konnichiwa.)" by Develop One's Faculties

tumblr_ob7fwnJCGG1rfey86o1_500.jpg

If I had to choose one band to be the flagship of current VK, it would be Develop One's Faculties. They are all extremely gifted musicians who aren't afraid of experimenting and infusing their songs with new sounds, which makes Yuya's project is much more interesting than your average VK experience. In this song they get in touch with their indie rock influences, Yuya's clean riffs could be easily seen in bands like cinema staff or androp. Johannes is a beast as usual, DOF's 'let it loose' style let him shine so much more than his previous works. This kind of approach is very healthy for them as a band and for the scene, as VK could use more genre-bending bands, instead of the regular chugga-chugga we are used to. Overall, while this is definitely not their most creative or innovative effort, it is one of those songs to end the encore of a concert in such a high note you'll end up wanting more.

Spoiler

 

 

"人魚姫(ningyo hime)" by FoLLoW

tumblr_ob7fwnJCGG1rfey86o3_500.jpg

FoLLoW is one of those acts that gets under people's radar for a reason I don't really know. Their sound is TIGHT. MASASHI's vocals are really on point, perfectly expressing his feelings and guiding the listener through the song. I also really like maki's drum lines; while basic, they help give an edge and nicely dictate the rhythm of the song. The 03:33 part into the last chorus is really powerful and emotional. All in all, this is by no means an epic song, but everything here matches so perfectly I can't help but have a smile on my face by the end.

Spoiler

 

 

 

@Ada Suilen's picks

 

"詩踏み(utafumi)" by DIR EN GREY

tumblr_ob7fwnJCGG1rfey86o2_500.jpg

I have to admit that 'not visual' DEG were not one of my favourite bands until I heard "Rinkaku". And with "Utafumi", despite of its length, they enhanced their style at an incredible level. The technique is incredibly relevant in this dim and painful track, where Kyo's theatrical and creepy approach fits incredibly with the whole thing. Surely one of the best tracks of the year!

Spoiler

 

 

"斑(mura)" by Develop One's Faculties

tumblr_ob7fwnJCGG1rfey86o1_500.jpg

One of the best rookies so far have probably reached the best of themselves. Their eccentric rock sound evolved a lot, arriving to touch more unpredictable and skillful features, where their latest song, "Mura", represents the apex of what was their project; with sublime funk bass lines and beating rhythms, this band literally caught my heart and my ears.

Spoiler

 

 

:starry:

Thank you for hanging out with us another month! 

Special thanks to our guest reviewers! If anyone would like to be a guest reviewer in the future please contact @doombox for more info!

 

 

 

 

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Is this recommended tracks or just a list of everything that was released this month?

 

But seriously I really appreciate this thread, awesome way to catch up on some tunes i missed

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
9 minutes ago, Hakari said:

Is this recommended tracks or just a list of everything that was released this month?

 

But seriously I really appreciate this thread, awesome way to catch up on some tunes i missed

Can't lie, it was a good month for new music! lol We went a little harder than the last few months. XD

 

Glad you're liking it! Feel free to tell us if we missed anything good that came out this month too. 

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

loving these lists. with studying days over it has become considerably more difficult to roam the internets for new music to discover, so these lists are a great help. Also i would have NOT expected to ever get into a new VK band again. Good job "Develop One's Faculties"!! very nice surprise. vocalist reminds me a bit of god and death stars.

 

EDIT: also, sweet jesus, need to get my hands on some of that Club Fujin goodness...

(and yes, as i wrote already someplace else, that aimer+TK is probably one of the greatest songs to be written/performed/recorded in the last 5-10 years, i'm not even joking)

Edited by bonsaijodelfisch

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

I've gotta say I'm partial to ZigZag's 悪いのはバンドマン and 死んでほしい but 怨めしや~百鬼夜行~is really fun too

and shellmy killed it with 放課後の凶室 and 絶交

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
8 hours ago, anakuro said:

I've gotta say I'm partial to ZigZag's 悪いのはバンドマン and 死んでほしい but 怨めしや~百鬼夜行~is really fun too

and shellmy killed it with 放課後の凶室 and 絶交

We're always taking guest reviews! Hit us up next month!

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Glad to have joined this list! The choices are pretty interesting, with thumbs up for The Novembers, Develop One's Faculties, Girugamesh and Chariots!

Keel's track is monstrous, such as Shuumeigiku are pretty interesting!

Boris's song is pure ear-gasm!!

Edited by Ada Suilen
Just listened to it!

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
2 hours ago, chemicalpictures said:

yaaay, glad to be part of this!

 

31 minutes ago, Ada Suilen said:

Glad to have joined this list! The choices are pretty interesting, with thumbs up for The Novembers, Develop One's Faculties, Girugamesh and Chariots!

Keel's track is monstrous, such as Shuumeigiku are pretty interesting!

 

Thanks again, you two! Feel free to join in again any time! 

 

I think together the entire DOF single got recommended, not that I'm complaining, it's great! XD

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Okay now that I've gotten a chance to digest all these jams (man, what a month!) I can comment. XD

 

@beni I don't know where you find all these cool artists. I know I don't follow pop that closely but they don't even seem to be the kind of trendy pop artists, they're always a little quirky or underrated and interesting! Fitz is also always surprising me with picks like these. SUPER BEAVER are a real crowd pleaser though, so I'm happy to see them show up. I couldn't see the TWEEDEES song since it's blocked in my country but there seem to be a some live recordings on youtube I was able to check out. Very nice!

 

@togzNice range of picks this month. That illion site teaser was really interesting. I was able to hunt it down and play with it a little after reading your blurb. Talk about cool marketing! And that Novembers track is back in the direction I like! Their softer side is nice but just doesn't grip me like this does. I think I'm gonna get a lot of milage out of that one. And of course I love Develop One's Faculties and Crossfaith. Crossfaith's singles never seem to stick with me like their albums do, but man Kenta's cleans are sounding soooo gooooood. 

 

@emmny Dat girugamesh track. I couldn't even handle writing about it, I'm still so salty. So bless you for that one. I can't contain my feels. ToT

 

@tetsu_sama69 *high fives* for chariots. That single rocked hard. Also digging FerrisWheeL. I will take all the old school vk feelings I can get. <3

 

@fitear1590 Man you really covered the spectrum this month! Koochewsen reqs are always A+ in my book. They keep slaying! I'm also floored by kamisai and heisenburg. Really gorgeous tunes, I'm gonna have to go hunting through more youtube recommendations if they're giving you gems like these!

 

@CAT5Holy cow. I remember liking Aimer's previous stuff but this song was a whole 'nother level of good. 

tumblr_nupb6fIvmE1sibub4o1_400.png

 

@Zeus I was about to give up on KEEL, but you have shown me the err of my ways. That was awesome. 

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

@doombox Thanks for your awesome mini-reviews! I'm gonna follow suit. Somehow, the news of chariots' return gave me the slip, but this is better than what I remember them sounding like. Very cool to see some of the VII-SENSE musicians return and frankly, Riku seems to be a better fit than whatever Juka was doing in that band. Your OBLIVION DUST vid didn't work though!

@beni I can definitely see myself getting into TWEEDEES--they seem to have a nice shibuya kei tinge to their music. I'm still on the fence about GOMESS, but I appreciate the cutesy unorthodox take on rap. Also, the verses of that Aikawa Nanase song are giving me strong "片手に夢を持つ少女" (KAMIJO) vibes! Do you hear it too?

@togz Unfortunately your illion track is no longer available. Great pick with THE NOVEMBERS though!  Although I much prefer their softer side, this is an awesome atmospheric track, harkening back to some of the moments on Rhapsody in beauty. Shoegrunge! Oh and on FB, they just announced that the song is released worldwide now as "Black Rainbow" :D

@tetsu_sama69 Insanity Injection is such an accurate band name, haha. VK will never not need Kyouka's special brand of crazy! And thanks for helping spread the word about FerrisWheeL! They (like Crishuna) seem really special!

@emmnySo glad you covered Kiryu. I haven't spent enough time with the full album yet (though, it seems better than their last one), but this is seriously one of their best songs ever. The creepiano is so good!

@CAT5Agreeing with everyone else. That Aimer track is gorgeous! Her voice works super well with TK's dramatic composition. FUJIN CLUB is pretty neat too. I can definitely see what you mean with the WUJA BIN BIN comparison.

@Zeus I'm still resisting KEEL (I really despised "fanfale" off their last mini), but I hope they're winning me over. "LEM" is my kind of track! Need to check out that single.

@chemicalpicturesand @Ada Suilen Thanks for your guest reviews! We hope you and others will consider submitting in the future too, to help keep our Recommended Tracks lists as well-rounded and representative of the MH community as possible! Clearly, DOF is a band I need to give another chance. It's so cool how you both (and togz) covered three different tracks--looks like I need to grab that single. The FoLLoW track is quite nice as well. I only know them from their song "Planetarium," but I appreciate MASASHI's rich vocals. Even though the lead single "Music Garden" is so NOT my thing, I'm hoping I can enjoy something from their upcoming album.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

@fitear1590 Not sure what's going on for you but the illion and Oblivion Dust tracks both still work for me. Maybe refresh and try them again?

Glad to see you're also enjoying chariots this go round! I never got to hear them with Juka in the other band (at least not that I remember) but I do like the chemistry they have going right now, for sure.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
27 minutes ago, doombox said:

@fitear1590 Not sure what's going on for you but the illion and Oblivion Dust tracks both still work for me. Maybe refresh and try them again?

Glad to see you're also enjoying chariots this go round! I never got to hear them with Juka in the other band (at least not that I remember) but I do like the chemistry they have going right now, for sure.

Lol, why do I always have issues with YouTube?! I'll recheck those two when I get home, haha.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

@CAT5 I just read that my fave Minami Kitasono did the arrangement for another track on Fujin Club's album ("わたしお嫁に行くわ"). Listening now and I can definitely hear it :)
 

3 minutes ago, Komorebi said:

The only one I've heard here is Necro... looks like I have a lot of catching up to do. It's very nice to find good reccomendations, thank you all for your effort :D I apreciate it.


Thanks for checking out the list, Komorebi! We hope you discover something you like! I need to check out more from MORRIGAN, because "NECRO" left a good impression on me.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
1 hour ago, fitear1590 said:

Thanks for checking out the list, Komorebi! We hope you discover something you like! I need to check out more from MORRIGAN, because "NECRO" left a good impression on me.

 I am sure I will. It's hard to keep up with so many bands, I don't know how you guys do it.
Morrigan have some great songs, I personally like them a lot, but then again I don't really know much about music :P 

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Create an account or sign in to comment

You need to be a member in order to leave a comment

Create an account

Sign up for a new account in our community. It's easy!

Register a new account

Sign in

Already have an account? Sign in here.

Sign In Now
Sign in to follow this  

  • Recently Browsing   0 members

    No registered users viewing this page.

×