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Monochrome Heaven's "A picture is worth a thousand songs" Trade-Off!

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2 hours ago, Hohchicano96 said:

Although this is a late request, would it be possible for me to a one-day extension for my review? I'm currently dealing with a situation that involves helping a friend keeping watch with one of theirs who is in a rough one.

 

No problem at all. It's completely understandable! Thank you for letting us know!

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SuspiriaSMS-255_zpsu6rb4bqh.jpg

 

A little late, but here it is :D 

 

The picture above is from the movie, Suspira (directed by Argento). I’ve never seen the movies, but upon seeing the image, I was looking forward to what kind of songs would fit a scene from the horror movie series. Unfortunately, I don’t listen to many of the artists on the mixtape, but nonetheless, I was eager to dive into this mixtape, and be able to sample something different from what I usually listen to.

 

This is my first review, so I apologize if the critique sounds super basic ^^; I did my best to write down my feelings and thoughts on each song. The title of mixtape I received is called “Suzy and the Peacock”.

 

Spoiler

If You Knew Who I Really Was, You’d Hate My Guts

By Clearings (03:19)

:3.0:

 

The piece begins with an echoing, empty-like sound as if one is the middle of an empty forest (or in the case of the image, room) before you hear an acoustic guitar play its melodically soothing notes. The sounds of a vehicle beeping its horn and the static noise of radio talk were not expected, but it added to the sense of mystery to the situation. I think it served as a good opener, giving the listener a sense of what the overall mood/theme of the mixtape.

 

Kyomu no Naka de no Yuugi

By Malice Mizer (06:33)

:4.5:

 

I’ve never listened to Malice Mizer, and I must say, I fell in love with this song after listening to it once. It begins with a beautiful piano melody before the synthesizers and harpsichord (later) kicked in to create a haunting atmosphere. And the sound effect of glass shattering wonderfully sets the stage for the singer to make his grand entrance into the song. The opera chorus added a nice epic feel, and definitely fits the given image. It sounds mysterious and menacing at the same time. I did have a hard time hearing the singer’s voice, but I’m not using any special headphones, so that’s probably the case, lol.

 

Mallory Fujin no Hiyaka na Yokubou

By Eliphas Levi (04:40)

:3.5:

 

This song seemed to tread along a similar theme to the previous Malice Mizer track with its usage of a harpsichord, piano, and an intimidating sound that opens up right at the beginning. Oddly, I think the singer’s voice works here to convey a sense of despair and helplessness. I enjoyed the way the vocalist talked halfway during the song as if trying to converse with someone else.

 

Opera-za no Higeki

By Madeth gray’ll (04:50)

:3.5:

 

Love those stringed instruments at the start! And the sudden abrupt change with the guitar startled me a bit, but I think perhaps that is the ‘scare’ effect (which is clearly represented in the girl’s facial expression in the picture). Unlike some songs, the screams in here didn’t feel so intrusive and felt exactly right at home. 

 

Imperialismo

By Cruz de Navajas (04:36)

:3.5:

 

Hearing that deep bass line and beating drums made me tap my feet right away. The tune was catchy, and when the vocalist sang, I felt as if I was being swept away in some dark abyss without any control of the future. Very much on par with the darkness of the image.

 

Hamono no Koi

By VELVET EDEN (05:29)

:3.5:

 

I didn’t expect to hear any synthesizers, but it made the track much catchier. It also didn’t feel too obnoxious and helped to cement a foreboding aura, settling itself along this uneasy, spine-chilling theme. The singer’s memorable deep voice made this song work fantastically!

 

The View From Here

By AFI (03:40)

:3.5:

 

Oh, wow! I haven’t listened to AFI in such a long time. The last release I listened by them was their Decemberunderground album. It certainly sounds different from the older works, but it made me feel mellow although not completely relaxed. I think it’s those bells, which strangely enough send a slight sudden chill down my spine. The singer, as always, has an addictively strong voice.

 

TOPAZ

By SHAZNA (03:31)

:4.0:

 

Unlike the other songs I have heard so far in the mixtape, this one marks a dramatic shift with its upbeat tune. The sexy bass and playful guitar notes came out crystal clear, which had me dancing all the way to the end. Unfortunately, I barely heard anything as noteworthy from the drums as compared to the guitars. Nonetheless, this is a great song! Although, I’m not quite sure how it fits with the image, and I thought it might have more to do with the lyrics. Unfortunately, I couldn’t find a proper translation, so many apologies if I completely missed how it aligns with the picture!

 

Shiseru Hana

By DEFLOWER (04:23)

:3.0:

 

To me, the song seems to cry out a “haunted house riddled with horrible stuff” alert. (At least for me XD) Even though not much is going on in the song (numerous of solos, riffs, etc.), I think this technique works in its favor by being able to foster a sense of creepiness. The way the singer’s voice echoes off into the distance reminds me of wandering around in a spooky place late at night and imagining your own voice bounce off the walls. Or even imagining the faint cry of a ghost somewhere far off. Also, the guitars make you feel as though you should hurry up and get out of wherever you are stuck!

 

Play

By Miranda Sex Garden (04:19)

:3.0:

 

I saw this song came from one of Suspiria movies. Without a doubt, it nestles itself right in at home with this frightening, scary image. At first, I thought the female in the song would sing in her lullaby tone for the whole time. But I was caught off guard when she sung louder as if speaking up in a harsh, grating tone. Towards the last third of the song, I swore it sounded like ghosts swirling around me as the funky guitar notes created an awkward, frightening dissonance and the lady’s voice meshed right in, painting a dismal, horrific feeling. By the end, I really wanted to hurry up and “get out” XD

 

Blue badge

By deadman (04:53)

:3.0:

 

Thoroughly enjoyed the guitar work in this one! In fact, I feel it’s the guitars, which make the listener's heart bubble with discomfort and anguish. The singer’s deep voice breaks a little when he tries to go higher, but I still loved xD

 

Proof

By folio (06:30)

:3.0:

 

I rather enjoyed this ballad song with its slower tempo. The melody of the guitar stuck out to me and carried me along as if floating away somewhere. To me, it felt like letting out a breath of relief. Not sure if that was its purpose on the mixtape, but I quite liked it ^^

 

Die

By BUCK-TICK (04:28)

:4.0:

 

Ah, I love the album and this song by Buck-Tick. Without a doubt, Atsushi has a recognizable, amazing voice, and the instrumentals are fantastic. My favorite parts are the ones when the guitar is able to produce a unique sound, which results in a disturbing atmosphere. The manner in which Atsushi’s voice echoes further highlighted this chilling feeling.

 

MOVE ON DARKNESS

By Laputa (05:06)

:3.5:

 

The song feels like it circles right back to the beginning with its eeriness that the first few tracks clearly conveyed. However, unlike those songs, this one clearly has a slower tempo as if dragging you along. I also appreciate how this singer’s voice also bounces "off the wall" like in the previous song (a clear theme going on here!) And I’m a sucker for harpsichord, which was amazingly integrated into the song. For some reason, I felt like this song placed me right in the middle of a horror movie, and I’m trying to desperately get away even though the ‘nemesis’ is right on my tail. A perfect way to end the mixtape :) 

 

Overall, I thought the mixtape was put together well, and for the most part, matched the picture ^^ Now, I have some good songs to put on my playlist and more artists to check out. Thank you so much for the awesome mixtape, @Hohchicano96!

Edited by monkeybanana4
typo; wording — because I can’t write ;w;

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I traded mixtapes with @Triangle and I think we were a perfect match. Not only out mixes had very similar themes but we seem to have a very compatible music taste. I enjoyed their mix very much.

 

G6MVTpX.jpg

 

Spoiler

Trash Candy – Grandrodeo 4/5

I’ve been meaning to give this band a shot for a while and keep forgetting to, but this was a great introduction. I really dig this type of vocal and the whole first half of the song gave me all those modern Tokyo vibes, while the great guitar solo and wonderful choruses have this distinct “J-rock” signature sound. Overall just my kind of jam and one that will get me to check out Grandrodeo later. This track sets the mood of the mix really well and goes perfectly with the image.

 

Honey – Band Maid 5/5

I can’t begin to describe how much I love this song. I know it’s a cover, but it stands very well on its own and these girls really made it shine in their own signature style. I LOVE a good rock/metal band with powerful, non-screechy, female vocals and this particular track always gives me goosebumps. What a great follow up to the previous track. The simple yet catchy guitar riff at the beginning has to be my favorite part of this song. This track is just amazing.

 

Exciting! – Mamoru Miyano 4/5

I was extremely distracted though this whole song because I swear to God it sounds EXACTLY like Initial’L’s “NA NA NA”. I kid y’all not, go check it out.  I really liked this song but the déjà vu feel was extremely strong. What I really like here is the percussion, the dancey rhythm that fits the overall mood perfectly and when I look at the photo I want to dance around to this track right there. Also, it was my first time listening to Mamoru Miyano, idk why I didn’t before, he sings far better than the seiyu’s I’ve heard before.

 

R.Y.U.S.E.I – J Soul Brothers 3/5

This song changed the mood a little bit yet the electro-pop elements were a perfect continuation from the previous track. It says nightclub. It says neon lights. It says Shinjuku. It really speaks to me in synch with the image you chose and that truly is wonderful. Even if, on its own, it’s a song I probably wouldn’t give much thought to, in this context it really stands out and blends nicely with the other tracks.

 

Blackhole – News 5/5

Ohh I like this. It gives me kpop vibes and the melody is really… stereotypical middle east? Which is wonderfully exotic, I love how diverse the mix is turning. And I really love a good catchy pop song. I’ve heard of News but this is really different from everything I had heard before from them. I like the mix of voices, I'm not sure how many boys sing here, but their voices match very well together.

 

D.A.N.C.E. – Rottengraffity 4/5

Another familiar band I had never checked out before yet knew. This song carries on with the modern sound but joined by guitars, giving it a slightly harsher, rockier sound. The voice is a bit average, nothing too outstanding, but the track in itself is solid and fun to listen to and the instrumentals interesting enough to keep around and check out more.

 

Genesis – Stereo Dive Foundation 3/5

This sounds like it should be an anime opening, it felt very futuristic and hopeful in a way. This sounds like Shinjuku’s really modern side, like the high skyscrapers and all the stores on the commercial side of the district. Even though I’m skeptic about the use of autotune and other voice editing shenanigans it turned out well in this song since it went with the instrumentals. I’m not sure what the lyrics are about, but the name speaks of rebirth and AI and it’s quite intriguing, and very Japanese.

 

Fuzz – Mucc

YASS BITCH! This is my absolute favorite Mucc song and one I always dance at parties. This one is a real banger and gets me super pumped, so good job putting it in the middle of the mix. The harmonica bits in this song are just perfect and I adore the backing vocals during the chorus in this song and it gives off such a powerful and energetic feel. What is not to love about this stage of Mucc, really.

 

Day you laugh – Toshiyuki Toyonaga 4/5

This song felt slightly lackluster after the Fuzz hype, but after a second listen I came to appreciate the calmer feel of the guitar and the drumming is really captivating in this song as well. I had never heard of this guy and I’ll keep an eye out, I really liked the acustic guitar throughout the song and it made me feel I kept walking around Shinjuku into a whole different area of it. The way he sang made me feel he was telling a story.

 

Monorium – Chanty 4/5

Another familiar track, which is always nice and even though I don’t pay Chanty the attention they deserve, this was another chance to revisit a track I had kinda liked yet didn’t give a second thought. This track’s upbeat tune goes wonderful with the photo and the “kirakira” at the chorus immediately had me thinking of the neon lights. This song felt light and cheerful, less serious than the previous song, playful even.

 

Fall – Noriyuki Makihara

This feels sort of jazzy and upbeat at the beginning and it picks up into a really urban sort of melody. It sounded a bit like an anime ending which is a very fitting way to close the mix. I kept hearing the chorus as “it’s time to go” lol.
I’m not so sure about this track as a standalone, but it most definitely represent the chosen theme and closes the mix with a nice feeling.

I'm really sorry I can't add the image here, but every song really fit the one they chose and it's overall a fantastic work!

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My partner for this tradeoff was @monkeybanana4; the image enclosed in their zip file, also including their mixtape, is entitled "Seasons and A Lone Girl" which portrays a young girl sitting on an engawa veranda observing the outside, featuring characteristics of the four seasons

I didn't receive a summary of what thoughts @monkeybanana4 had in mind while curating this mixtape. As a result, I took notes during some listening sessions, without any guidance, from them, that would affect me, and composed this review to express my sentiments from the tunes of names both familiar and unknown to me.


934846.jpg

 

Spoiler

 

1. Yoko Shimomura - Dearly Beloved -KINGDOM HEARTS II VER.-
5/5

Although a tracklist was included in the zip file as a note, hearing the first notes brought me to my tween years, sitting in the basement couch with the controller in my hands as I watched in awe of the game. There was this sense of comfort parallel to the girl in the image as she admired the sight of the sun breaking through the heavy clouds from where the snowfall came.
 

2. SpecialThanks - Heart Light

4/5

Despite this song being a new one to my ears, it sounded familiar as if I had been singing along to it for a few years. In fact, while typing the last few sentences, I sang along to the vocalist. Referring to the image, I could imagine the girl humming the chorus for her pleasure.
 

3. DaizyStripper - 春めく僕ら
5/5
Yugiri's voice took me to several places during the duration of this song; the one where I roamed the longest was in a gazebo that shielded me from the harsh winter squalls of a January evening. I found myself reminiscing the time I caught-up with two close friends in their attic-sized apartment.
 

4. SINCREA - I Close My Eyes
5/5
Drama, drama, drama that only a skinny legend can produce! On a serious note, this ballad had me singing along manically while driving to customers' dwellings for my job as a deliverer/shopper. The uplifting tone of this tune had me recalling the luminous sun piercing the sky.
 

5. Rentrer en Soi - season
4/5

Although a highly pleasant song, it felt out of place for the first few listens. I made the decision of searching for its lyrical content to see if it could help shape my thoughts; Satsuki's lyrics reaffirmed my assumption of seasons changing and weather elements taking place, as portrayed in the image.
 

6. 和楽器バンド - 虹色蝶々
4/5

I had no prior knowledge of Wagakki Band's sound so I listened attentively to the recording, taking notes on the synergy of the  traditional and western instruments. I had plenty of goosebumps at first listen while recalling squalls collecting wilted leaves, carrying them to elsewhere.
 

7. Kajiura Yuki - Will
3/5

This piece served its purpose as a soothing transitional piece. However, it was difficult for me to connect it to the image. Perhaps I should be in a vulnerable state of being to conjure something.
 

8. Stereopony - さよならの季節
4/5

A familiar name with songs I had never heard before because of other artists I wanted to know, making me put this group aside for months. I enjoyed the overall composition as it left me feeling mellow, although the title could had make me think otherwise. Bidding farewells to the sun was the first thought that came into mind after thinking of the image.
 

9. Aimer - 君を待つ
5/5

The vocalist's performance kept me engaged for the entire song, especially the vocal effects applied in post-production, which evoked a sense of longing for a reunion. Could it be related to the supposed distance between weather elements, despite them being close in appearance, was what I thought once.

 

10. Kagrra, (神楽)- 雪恋歌
5/5

Oh, rest in peace, Isshi for your departure was a great loss in the Visual Kei scene! Moving on from that statement, the song had me thinking of an encounter between the girl and her unrequited crush, with her knowing that it wouldn't be possible to have romance blooming during the coldest times of the year.
 

11. DIAURA - Lost November
5/5

When I saw DIAURA's name in the list, I found myself being skeptical as I had read divisive opinions of the band despite never giving a listen to any songs. Well, I was thankful for this song proving me wrong, providing me this continuously thriving optimism much needed.
 

12. Luzmelt - Meltaway
4/5

Another unfamiliar band whose discography I will need to dig into when the next opportunity arises. The synthesizer at the coda had me thinking of the blanket of snow, with the sun present, brightening the girl's surroundings.
 

13. MEJIBRAY - Iris (inst)
3.5/5

This piece had me pondering for a while because of the title; the word iris, in Greek, refers to a rainbow which is not present in the image; however, the word in English refers to the circular structure surrounding the pupil, which brought the sun into mind.

 

 


I would like to thank @monkeybanana4 for taking their time to create this mixtape full of pleasant surprises. I look forward to their review of the oddity that is my mixtape.

Edited by Hohchicano96
Further formatting of review and inclusion of image

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On 3/18/2019 at 9:18 PM, Komorebi said:

I traded mixtapes with @Triangle and I think we were a perfect match. Not only out mixes had very similar themes but we seem to have a very compatible music taste. I enjoyed their mix very much.

 

G6MVTpX.jpg

 

  Reveal hidden contents

Trash Candy – Grandrodeo 4/5

I’ve been meaning to give this band a shot for a while and keep forgetting to, but this was a great introduction. I really dig this type of vocal and the whole first half of the song gave me all those modern Tokyo vibes, while the great guitar solo and wonderful choruses have this distinct “J-rock” signature sound. Overall just my kind of jam and one that will get me to check out Grandrodeo later. This track sets the mood of the mix really well and goes perfectly with the image.

 

Honey – Band Maid 5/5

I can’t begin to describe how much I love this song. I know it’s a cover, but it stands very well on its own and these girls really made it shine in their own signature style. I LOVE a good rock/metal band with powerful, non-screechy, female vocals and this particular track always gives me goosebumps. What a great follow up to the previous track. The simple yet catchy guitar riff at the beginning has to be my favorite part of this song. This track is just amazing.

 

Exciting! – Mamoru Miyano 4/5

I was extremely distracted though this whole song because I swear to God it sounds EXACTLY like Initial’L’s “NA NA NA”. I kid y’all not, go check it out.  I really liked this song but the déjà vu feel was extremely strong. What I really like here is the percussion, the dancey rhythm that fits the overall mood perfectly and when I look at the photo I want to dance around to this track right there. Also, it was my first time listening to Mamoru Miyano, idk why I didn’t before, he sings far better than the seiyu’s I’ve heard before.

 

R.Y.U.S.E.I – J Soul Brothers 3/5

This song changed the mood a little bit yet the electro-pop elements were a perfect continuation from the previous track. It says nightclub. It says neon lights. It says Shinjuku. It really speaks to me in synch with the image you chose and that truly is wonderful. Even if, on its own, it’s a song I probably wouldn’t give much thought to, in this context it really stands out and blends nicely with the other tracks.

 

Blackhole – News 5/5

Ohh I like this. It gives me kpop vibes and the melody is really… stereotypical middle east? Which is wonderfully exotic, I love how diverse the mix is turning. And I really love a good catchy pop song. I’ve heard of News but this is really different from everything I had heard before from them. I like the mix of voices, I'm not sure how many boys sing here, but their voices match very well together.

 

D.A.N.C.E. – Rottengraffity 4/5

Another familiar band I had never checked out before yet knew. This song carries on with the modern sound but joined by guitars, giving it a slightly harsher, rockier sound. The voice is a bit average, nothing too outstanding, but the track in itself is solid and fun to listen to and the instrumentals interesting enough to keep around and check out more.

 

Genesis – Stereo Dive Foundation 3/5

This sounds like it should be an anime opening, it felt very futuristic and hopeful in a way. This sounds like Shinjuku’s really modern side, like the high skyscrapers and all the stores on the commercial side of the district. Even though I’m skeptic about the use of autotune and other voice editing shenanigans it turned out well in this song since it went with the instrumentals. I’m not sure what the lyrics are about, but the name speaks of rebirth and AI and it’s quite intriguing, and very Japanese.

 

Fuzz – Mucc

YASS BITCH! This is my absolute favorite Mucc song and one I always dance at parties. This one is a real banger and gets me super pumped, so good job putting it in the middle of the mix. The harmonica bits in this song are just perfect and I adore the backing vocals during the chorus in this song and it gives off such a powerful and energetic feel. What is not to love about this stage of Mucc, really.

 

Day you laugh – Toshiyuki Toyonaga 4/5

This song felt slightly lackluster after the Fuzz hype, but after a second listen I came to appreciate the calmer feel of the guitar and the drumming is really captivating in this song as well. I had never heard of this guy and I’ll keep an eye out, I really liked the acustic guitar throughout the song and it made me feel I kept walking around Shinjuku into a whole different area of it. The way he sang made me feel he was telling a story.

 

Monorium – Chanty 4/5

Another familiar track, which is always nice and even though I don’t pay Chanty the attention they deserve, this was another chance to revisit a track I had kinda liked yet didn’t give a second thought. This track’s upbeat tune goes wonderful with the photo and the “kirakira” at the chorus immediately had me thinking of the neon lights. This song felt light and cheerful, less serious than the previous song, playful even.

 

Fall – Noriyuki Makihara

This feels sort of jazzy and upbeat at the beginning and it picks up into a really urban sort of melody. It sounded a bit like an anime ending which is a very fitting way to close the mix. I kept hearing the chorus as “it’s time to go” lol.
I’m not so sure about this track as a standalone, but it most definitely represent the chosen theme and closes the mix with a nice feeling.

I'm really sorry I can't add the image here, but every song really fit the one they chose and it's overall a fantastic work!

Awww ! Thank you so much for this review! I loved reading it and I'm glad we matched <3. Good thing you guise managed to get the picture up <3.  Sorry for this extra work XD.

 

Honestly I put "R.Y.U.S.E.I." in because it was (probably still is) a popular song in Japan and it reminded me of the time I was there.

And "Genesis" is actually an opening for an anime called Dimension W, which kinda matches futuristic side of Tokyo hehe

 

I loved this challenge, it made me think of creative ways of exposing my playlist haha. Thanks for the trade-off Cat :).

 

Edited by Triangle

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Many apologies for not specifying my thoughts on what I was thinking! I was interested to hear how the songs affected your thoughts/perceptions about the image and how the two elements could/might be related :P Originally, when putting together the mixtape, I based it on what was going on in the image (different seasons, weather) and a mix of emotions I felt when looking at it (happiness, sadness, inspiration, nostalgia, etc.). I'm glad to know that you found it enjoyable overall!

10 hours ago, Hohchicano96 said:

4. SINCREA - I Close My Eyes
5/5
Drama, drama, drama that only a skinny legend can produce! On a serious note, this ballad had me singing along manically while driving to customers' dwellings for my job as a deliverer/shopper. The uplifting tone of this tune had me recalling the luminous sun piercing the sky.

Haha, I'm glad to hear that it was super fun to sing along with! I hope it didn't distract you too much from your job XD (I also love to sing along with this song, looking like a completely idiot, lol.)

10 hours ago, Hohchicano96 said:

13. MEJIBRAY - Iris (inst)
3.5/5

This piece had me pondering for a while because of the title; the word iris, in Greek, refers to a rainbow which is not present in the image; however, the word in English refers to the circular structure surrounding the pupil, which brought the sun into mind.

I hadn't even thought of the title when I picked the song, lol. I chose it based more on my feelings XD But that's a good interpretation that I hadn't ever thought of! (And probably never would have.) 

10 hours ago, Hohchicano96 said:

11. DIAURA - Lost November
5/5

When I saw DIAURA's name in the list, I found myself being skeptical as I had read divisive opinions of the band despite never giving a listen to any songs. Well, I was thankful for this song proving me wrong, providing me this continuously thriving optimism much needed.

Happy to hear you liked it! This song comes from their Genesis album, which I think is one of their best releases :) You should definitely check it out if you have the chance.

10 hours ago, Hohchicano96 said:

10. Kagrra, (神楽)- 雪恋歌
5/5

Oh, rest in peace, Isshi for your departure was a great loss in the Visual Kei scene! Moving on from that statement, the song had me thinking of an encounter between the girl and her unrequited crush, with her knowing that it wouldn't be possible to have romance blooming during the coldest times of the year.

Agreed. His passing was a great loss ;w; Funny enough, I had a hard time whether to use this song, Yuki Koi Uta, or Boukyaku no Hate no Kogoeta Kodoku, but I decided to go with this one instead since the title seemed to fit more with the image. 

 

I also reviewed your mixtape (in an earlier post), and I quite liked it ^^ I hadn't listened to many of the artists in the mixtape, but I'm going to put them in my music player and check them out (particularly Malice Mizer and Shazna). Thank you very much for putting together a great mixtape even if it was odd ;) 

Edited by monkeybanana4

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I'm going to review mixtape by @Seimeisen. They let me interpret it in my own way. Unfortunately, i'm not good in analyzing technical aspects of music, but during listening I happened to have a lot of vivid images in my head, so I came up with a story. So, the theme is - 

 

 WELCOME TO THE ー未来ー

O0LtgUl.jpg

 

Spoiler

1. cali≠gari - 吐イテ棄テロ

Spoiler

 

 

This is what i call perfect intro. It gives a very clear image of a future city - it’s overwhelming buildings, frightful deeds happening behind luring neon signs, and of course adventures you can find there. The story begins. The city itself is a living, powerful organism with blood, sweat and drugs going through its veins. Future is dark, yet charming.

I can see this track as a 90’s cyberpunk noir anime opening.
:5.0:

 

2. downy - Frozen Flower

Spoiler

 

 

To be honest, i have a prejudice towards japanese indie scene. There are some exceptions but they just prove the rule. Well I have to say this was an exception. How surprised was I to find myself liking this! Drum rhythm makes the listener to feel uncertainty and uneasiness. Somewhat monotonous melody creates the pressure. The hero of the story refuses to be a tiny cog in a big machine. Wandering the streets, he sees all the kinds of ugly things there.

:4.0:

 

3. DIAURA - PHANTOM

Spoiler

 

 

As many DIAURA’s songs, this one is invoking feeling of loneliness in me. Standing on the rooftop, the hero sees all these people hurrying somewhere, but he are lost completely. What is his mission in this city? What is he doing there? What is his role in society?

I know and love the song, and it does fit into the overall theme, but i don’t think it’s one of DIAURA’s strongest ones, so
:4.0:

 

4. Northlane - Let It Happen

Spoiler

 

 

Again, the song is building up the atmosphere of despair. The lyrics suggest that there’s going to be a change in the course of events. It’s that exact feeling when you are on the edge - cross the line and you just won’t care.

I find the voice super lovely by the way, high-pitched vocals matched with melodic voice part makes me want to listen to the song again and again. I literally fell in love with the song, thanks.
:5.0:

 

5. the GazettE - THE MORTAL

Spoiler

 

 

This piece presents the changes of the character. Accepting that he’ll never be a respected member of the society, he has to give up his humanity, being swallowed by his shadow. Furious guitar breaks, followed up by quiet, obscure parts kind of exaggerate the torment of the character, while the synth remind the listener about the setting of the story.

While not being a fan of the GazettE, i love Ruki’s soft and melodious voice and respect his vocal skills. The song is pretty enjoyable and it left a deep impression on me.
:4.0:

 

6. Architects - Nihilist

Spoiler

 

 

“I found God clutching a razor blade

He said "look at the fucking mess they've made

They'd trade their hearts if they were made of gold"

The lyrics say it all actually. Vocalist’s screams accompanied by aggressive music let us feel the main character’s grudge towards society.

Unfortunately, i don’t like that kind of music (is it metalcore? idk) and this song is the essence of what i try to avoid, but the mood is clear to me and the song complements mixtape.

:2.0:

 

7. アルルカン - exist

Spoiler

 

 

Intro of the song is quite good, it’s giving me the night view of the city from the rooftop somehow. From the end of the 2nd minute fast rhythm takes place - our hero, led by his hartred towards the city and way of life here, seems to find some trouble on neon streets.

:3.5:

 

8. In Flames - colony

Spoiler

 


The synth here seemed a bit cringey to me, but from the first second it created an image of some noir church from fantasy games lol. To be accurate, it reminded me of Bayonetta lol. So I couldn’t help imagining the main character in church with some good-for-nothing pope drinking whiskey, smoking ciggies hahaha. I understood the initial idea of including the song when i read the lyrics, they are 100% fit into the theme, but that synth led me in another direction, don’t know if it’s bad, just different. Speaking of the general impression of the song, that’s not something I’d listen to on a daily basis, but the image was fun.

:2.5:

 

9. The Royal - Lilith

Spoiler

 


The first seconds set a very strained atmosphere of terror. The rest of the song sounds very powerful and intense, making the setting the field of a fierce battle.

:3.5:

 

10. BUCK-TICK - Salome - femme fatale

Spoiler

 

 

Typical B-T song about obsessive, lustful forbidden love, and as a bunch of their latest releases, with the hint of futurism. The result of putting forbidden love and futuristic setting together reminded me of the love story in Blade Runner 2049 between protagonist and holographic companion Joi. The hero of our story here might experience something similar too. The siren in the very end of the track declares a bad ending obviously. Such a beautiful and sad story!

I also want to mention that i love the story of Salome and different representations of her in art. It was a pure pleasure to listen to the song.
:5.0:

 

11. 9GOATS BLACK OUT - HARMS

 

Spoiler

 

 

Okay firstly thanks for 9GBO, :5.0:, next

 

On a serious note, this is one solid transition track. The quiet intro, continuing the siren in the end of Salome, expresses the feeling of emptiness, caused by previous events. Then the track gathers momentum to shine at its fullest on the 2nd minute. Background mumbling intensifies complete madness going on here, and then everything just stops, leaving me knocked out and yearning for more.

 

12. Between The Buried And Me - Millions

Spoiler

 

 

The mood of this one is calm, but not in a good way. No emotions left, there is only exhaustion.

“Millions... watch them fly overhead

Now please take me with you”

Our hero meets his end here.

:4.5:

 

13. Silence Lies Fear - Beyond Reality

Spoiler

 

 

New morning in the cyberpunk city. Piano sounds brighten the song, I see the sun shining through the rain. Giant grey buildings rise up to the blue sky, the air smells of the wet asphalt. In a few minutes people will wake up, rush to get to work, corporations will continue to use them as mere tools, and no one will ever notice that someone is missing. The city continues on living. Nothing has changed.

:4.0:

 

To sum up, the mix is very accurate and it matches the image perfectly. Even if I had a problem with a song, after looking up the lyrics no dark spots were left.

I’d like to thank @CAT5 for giving an opportunity to create something and share my own vision, and to enjoy the vision of someone else. And thanks to @Seimeisen for the mix of course. I’ve experienced a wonderful fantasy spending several days in a cyberpunk city, haha. I’ll surely save some of the songs to my playlist, which means, a part of @Seimeisen's vision will live on within me, which is, no doubt, a little miracle which we all created here.  

Edited by yomii

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@CAT5 some things have come up and I'll need some more time to listen to your mix. I've only had one good opportunity to listen to it, so I don't feel that my review would be good or fair. I'll explain to you what's up on the side, but I didn't forget. Also, happy birthday my man! :D:3

Edit: This also happens to be my 8000th post...go me?

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oCD4vGH.jpg

Sappho (1881) by Miquel Carbonell i Selva

Quote

 

...they say that Sappho was the first,

hunting down the proud Phaon,

to throw herself, in her goading desire, from the rock

that shines from afar.

 

 

This picture represents Sappho's (supposed) death, as she flung herself into the sea after being rejected by the man she loved. All I knew about Sappho is that she wrote lesbian poetry and so I was a little confused by the extremely angry mix @doombox sent me. After my  research, it all made sense. This painting is not only tasteful, it's beautiful and does well to picture a moment of despair and conflict. Let's see how the music complements it!

 

Spoiler

 

 RENTRER EN SOI - THORNY RAIN BREAK :4.0:

At first I thought you had included Femme Fatale in your playlist too :D It's a song with sad undertones, but it isn't brutal. I suppose it would represent the moment of rejection. Some parts are delicate, such as the fast but soft singing just before the chorus. There's also the use of harp and acoustic guitar. There's a harp in the painting! So points for your attention to detail, even if it wasn't intentional haha

 

 12012 - 身千切りの莟、奇しくも恍惚の桜 :5.0:

So this is what 12012 is capable of?! I've been listening to the wrong album/singles all along!! Further into the darkness we go. This song has a heavy and slow rhythm. For some reason I thought it'd fit perfectly into the Nier Automata soundtrack. Sappho is having a hard time dealing with her feelings. Rejection hurts like a bitch after all.

 

RAZOR - 君は今も鮮やかに :4.5:

Okay, so I've been sleeping on RAZOR (and most bands in this playlist). We take a moment away from the growing storm to enjoy this ballad. It has everything you'd find in any standard ballad kit. The piano, strings and heartfelt singing. It could easily be underwhelming, but it did tug at my heart a little. Specially that short section around 2:40 :emo:  Sappho threw her lyre aside, thought about her lover and broken heart. There's no anger for now.

 

 ARCHEMI. - 鼓動 :5.0:

omg I need to experience this song live, I'd headbang 'till the doctor put me in one of those neck casts :D CATCHY AS FUCK! Oh yeah, Sappho's outrage is back with a vengeance.  Regarding the painting, I can imagine Sappho walking up the hill at this point, her chest is weighed down with anger and sadness. Storm clouds are crowding the horizon. 

 

 DADAROMA - 「溺れる魚」:5.0:

The transition from the previous song into this one was seamless, I'm impressed. Also, it's oboreru sakana. Do I need to say anything? It's one of ddrm's best work and always will be. A good mix of rage and despair, which fits the theme well.

 

 D'ESPAIRSRAY - SCREEN :3.5:

Another ballad-ish song?  Hey, where's the screaming gone? This is too calm considering how far we've come. How does this song relate to our story? Which point of Sappho's journey does it represent? I do like it, but there's a really weird sound effect which made me think there were pigeons in my balcony every time I listened to it, so it wasn't a pleasant experience.

 

真天地開闢集団-ジグザグ - 短絡的『絶望』 :3.5:

"Is that a kiryu song?" Back to the fast songs, but this time with the use of koto and Japanese flute. Maybe this song doesn't quiteeee belong here. Well, the vocalist keeps saying "zetsubou" in a serious voice, so I guess it's relevant.  

 

 ギルガメッシュ - END :4.0:

So we're at the "end". I like the contrast between calm and screaming! I didn't want to analyse the painting too hard, but I noticed how the lyre on the ground is the only thing in the scene that has a glow to it, like it's the only source of hope for Sappho and she's cast it aside to face the sea.  'END' could represent both of these powers, the calm parts are the lyre behind Sappho and the screaming is the sea facing her. Although it looks as if the waves are recoiling away from her, they don't want her to jump. 

 

 ザアザア - 青いレインコート :_10/10_::rockon:

雨に殺される is my favorite xaa-xaa release, period.  青いレインコート is my favorite song in the mini and I haven't listened to it in years, so I was stuck on this track for a very, very long time. It has a chilling atmosphere and Kazuki's screams post-guitar solo are addictive. Relevant lyrics "Your screams drown in the rain //Don’t move I just want to destroy you // Fall in your shadow // I want to reincarnate  In the days I knew nothing // Living a beautiful life// Narrated as if it was a dream/"  

 

NOGOD - III-実存 :3.5:

I can't make my mind up, this song is a mixed bag. I wish the vocalist had more 'oomph'. From 3:50 onwards starts a long guitar battle which reminds me of old rock bands from the 80s. It also makes me think of those days when your mind is an absolute mess of never ending thoughts. At this point the mix represents more of Sappho's mindset as she faces her death. 

 

 DIR EN GREY - 人間を被る :3.5:

I listened to 人間を被る once and never touched it again until this mix. Something about it just annoyed me from the first try, probably kyo's gremlim grumbling at the very start. But the chorus is not that bad. Actually, I grew used to it, so thank you @doombox for curing my aversion to 人間を被る lol It fits well into the playlist and complements everything that came before it, including the hectic/despairing atmosphere of 'Sappho'. 

 

 

Overall a great mix, I listened to it several times without skipping anything. The songs did their job in representing the art piece, awesome taste btw on all choices.  Thanks for introducing me to so many bands I've been sleeping on. My favorite discovery was ARCHEMI! I hope we get paired again sometime :)  ps: I'm a little sad that you gave BONNIE PINK the lowest rating, but I understand, the song should've been 4mins long at most lol that Rin gif is adorable...

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3 hours ago, Zeus said:

@CAT5 some things have come up and I'll need some more time to listen to your mix. I've only had one good opportunity to listen to it, so I don't feel that my review would be good or fair. I'll explain to you what's up on the side, but I didn't forget. Also, happy birthday my man! :D:3

Edit: This also happens to be my 8000th post...go me?

 

No problem, man! Take your time, as I've been quite busy myself.

 

And much appreciated! ^^

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@yomii sent me a mix entitled, i am thou, thou art i 〜我は汝、汝は我〜

 

35515152_239094096681034_880062793214695

Quote

This is a story about two magical entities, rulers of demons and shadows... in your head.

Living in the subconscious domain, they represent two primal archetypes.

One is violent, restless, playful. The other is subtle, gentle, timid.

They are different, but they are one.

Yin and yang, animus and anima, they confront each other while being attracted to each other.

In the end they manage to merge into each other, bringing eternal peace to the owner of the domain.

To be quite honest, the backstory provided didn't add anything to me. I personally didn't see the yin-yang complex in the drawing itself, and I didn't experience a great encounter with strong opposites in the mixtape itself. I saw the image for what it was; a Japanese lolita-esque drawing of twins who style their hair differently and have cuts on their necks and hands. So I expected a loli-goth vibe all around, and that's what I got!

 

Spoiler

NECRONOMIDOL - あたいの爪痕 :3.0:
This band has a very interesting blend of black metal, enka, and cutesy singing (the latter of which you’d find in a typical idol unit). Lolita Goth Metal is a great way to start a mixtape with an image like this

 

R指定 - 予言 :5.0:
The previous song segues rather nicely with this one. I don’t really see much of a connection with the song and this image, however. For some reason, this song actually reminds me of a rather shocking execution scene from an episode of The Handmaid’s Tale (season 2); I guess the episode and the song came out around the same time. This is one of my favourite R指定 songs ever. I can never listen to it only once, whenever it comes on, I repeat it. There are other R指定 songs I can think of that would have paired nicely with the image.

 

AvelCain - 猫又 :4.0:
Back to the Japan Is Cute theme (#turboweeb). I’ve always liked this song, and the single it came from. 妖の匣 was a breather in AvelCain’s otherwise painfully bleak series of singles themed after a season and an insect (this one being a mantis in the early fall). An uncharacteristically, but still enjoyable, fun and cheerful AvelCain song. This is another song that doesn’t really connect with the image, but that’s because when 妖の匣 came out, I listened to it all the time when I was walking around school.

 

MEIDARA - 般若心狂 :3.5:
And another heavy song! Is this how the image and the backstory are reflected in the tracklist? Soft yin, heavy yang? MEIDARA is a band name that I’ve recognised but never checked out. Was that a mistake? This kind of reminds me of 黒百合と影, but it's less sludgy, it has an enka injection, and I like this vocalist better.

 

仮病 - 戯言 :2.5:
I just recently downloaded 仮病’s album, and first impression, it’s so-so, and this is one of the weaker songs. This sort of reminds me of DEZERT’s “Strawberry Syndrome” but with some MIDI folk. It has its moments, but I’m not into the chorus.

 

AvelCain - 病 :2.5:
Even when I stanned AvelCain (I kinda stopped caring after they broke up), I wasn’t really into this song. It’s by no means a bad song, it’s just a song that I’m not always in the mood for. Musically, it has this action movie feel, but like, if the action movie was about slitting your wrists, because it’s an AvelCain song? Like, wrist-cut explosions and wrist-cut secret agent crime fighting? I dunno

 

蘭図 (Rands) - Lolita :2.5:
ねぇ、ローリタ、君をください・・・

 

Rands is a band that I’m not quite warming up to. After AvelCain broke up, I lost interest in hearing anything more from karma. The main riff sounds nice, but I don’t really like the chorus, particularly karma’s voice.

 

コシミハル - リリカちゃん電話 :2.0:
A muffled voicemail from a girl with a super high-pitched voice and some light elevator music in the background. Interesting intermission track

 

NECRONOMIDOL - Vulture :3.5:
Okay, so the first NECRONOMIDOL track was enka black metal, and this is just pure goth new wave. I feel like this song should signal a complete change in tone for this mix (or at least for the album “Nemesis” itself). I hella dig this track

 

AvelCain - 花一匁 :3.0:
It’s a typical AvelCain song that was recorded in 2013 and it’s a pretty well written one. There’s nothing more to tell…

 

Noulla - 暁光 :2.5:
I know Noulla is visual kei, but when I hear the MIDI intro while looking at the mixtape image, I think of every single doujin band I tried to get into in 2014. If the vocals were done by a woman, this would be the most doujin-kei song ever. I like the screams.

 

Alcadia - tight loop :4.0:
Vintage synth-goth-punk that I am totally here for. Category is: late 90s bands who play late 80s sounding music 

 

お遊戯ゎが魔々団×【PaRADEiS】- 鬼ごっこ :4.0:
This song has an epic climax-of-the-story vibe, so I suppose this is the part of the story where the convergence of the yin and yang completes. Regardless, this is a great song, especially for an oshare-looking UNDERCODE band.

 

Grimes - World Princess :3.0:
The only Western song, saved for last, but still very fitting. The opposite entities in your mind have become one entity and all is right. This is a somewhat minimal track with loud echoing vocals, so a vocal-centric track. A calm way to end things.

 

While some songs got lower ratings, this was still a great listen, I really enjoyed the combination of songs, the flow, and how every song (with two personal exceptions) paired really well with the main image!

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My partner was @ghost and I chose his Pure mix which was one of three whole mixes he sent me to choose from. I was originally going to post a review about a different one but I had much more to say about this mix as I felt like my personal taste was met more. Unfortunately the way the songs were tagged and the way they pulled up in my media player... I don't know the artists 100% So I'll just post the track names. 

 

Quote

 

PURE

rh5xth.jpg

Cover art - It's just something I found on Google, but I was looking for a picture of a Statue of Mary in a natural setting. 

 

"Pure is built around the ideas of inner-peace, happiness, and self-reflection."

 

+style

Indie, Kote-Kei, Japanese Folk, Alternative Rock, Classical

 

With these in mind, let's get to the review!

 

Spoiler

1. En Soi - 4.5/5

I have no idea who the artist is but this is a really cool intro for any kind of mix. It starts out kind of dark but it has a gradual build in to something coming to. Like it's not really a dark song but really serves as a great opener with the chord progressions etc. The ending, while I see as elegant, pure, and peaceful, is a little cheesy synthy for my taste. BUT IT LEADS IN TO THE NEXT SONG SO WELL. I'd listen to this again. Curious to see who the artist is. 

 

2. GARDEN - 5/5

You know. Please put my mind at peace. I don't know if this is La: Sadie or Dir en grey because I never really followed anything before Vulgar. I KNOW I'M BAD. But I'm intrigued by this track. And I feel that this is, despite being a fast paced rock song, does have a sense of happiness and/or purity. Plus it was almost a flawless transition from the opening song. I really like the mid section of the trickling guitar effect. ;]

 

3. Shiawase na hibi - the GazettE - 5/5

A THROW BACK FOR SURE. I absolutely love old school GazettE and this is one of my favorite songs. On top of that this song is very up beat and gives a sense of happiness simply in the guitar melody. That guitar duet. I'm also surprised to see how this panned out after Garden. The first three songs work so well together already. 

 

4. Prism - 4/5

I don't know the artist of this band either. A lot of these songs clearly take on the older area of Visual Kei and it's sort of like me finding a gem all over again. I used to avoid the old school stuff simply because I was naive. But I'll tell you what, I'm interested to find some more gems like this one. It's smooth, and a nice even come down from the more upbeat Shiawase na hibi. This song makes me think more of the reflection side of this mix. 

 

5. la lune - 4/5

WHO IS THIS. I DON'T THINK YOU KNOW HOW MUCH I NEED TO KNOW. I have heard this before and I can't remember where. But I love the vocalists voice?! Also this song has a lot of great elements and can fit with most of the things you've placed in this theme. Again a really good transition from the previous song. I took a safer route with my mix and just did a split feeling, but even purity has a lot of different elements so I like the sort of corners and twists you're taking with this mix to really tell a story or help translate the direction of emotion. 

 

6. Atmosphere - A9/Alice Nine - 5/5

Despite what other people may think about A9 they have been one of the more consistent bands in my opinion. Even after leaving PSC, they have their sound. But I didn't realize how much this mix required them until this song came on and I thought of course they'd need to be in a mix like this, they have so many vibes similar to this song and it fits so well with your theme. Not my favorite A9 song of all time, but I'm still really excited about it. Also is it just me or does the echoing guitar and echoing voice make you think of like dripping water... since water can be linked with purity it gave me that kind of feeling. 

 

7. Hamon Tsutau Mema - Rentrer en Soi (? i could be wrong?) - 3.5/5

You know, if this is who I think it is... I've met Satsuki on more than one ocassion and he even complimented my singing. I think he's talented and I like some of his solo stuff but I could never really get in to this band. I don't know if it's because I just have a bias of not being in to this band but the transition was a bit of a hiccup for me. But, the tone of the song over all fits with it cohesively. So I don't think it's a bad addition it's just not my jam.

 

8. Satsuki - Kagrra, - 5/5

I'm in tears. I'm legit crying a little. I can't even express in words what it's done to have this song on here. It's so full of waves and emotions... every part of this song. This song feels like a breathing living unit on it's own. It flows an breathes in such a way... and the vocals are so ... amazing. I really wish I could say more but this is literally my favorite song of all time from Kagrra, and I'm just really... emotional about it lol. Thank you for including this song. RIP.

 

9. Hakusetsu to mau - SCREW - 3.5/5

I was never really a fan of SCREW myself, more so their newer stuff. I just don't really like the vocals which is unfortunate as the musical aspect of even this song alone is really good. It fits, but again not really something of my taste. 

 

10. alone - 5/5

Another song I have never heard before and have no idea who it is. But I really like it. The vocal melody is very  slow and it's backed up by a really pretty guitar riff. The vocals all-together are very , what's the word, simplistic. The Melody isn't really anything ambiguous, but it works because the music really has some big mood riffs. Sometimes simple is enough. I do also want to note this is a great song to really start guiding the listener towards an ending. I'd almost say this alone would make a great ending track, but I'd like to see what the last one has in store. OOF around the 3 minute mark this song has a really powerful power-ballad or something going on and I'm all about it. 

 

11. Nuit Blanche de L'aurore - 4.5/5

Hmmm. Interesting. This song... works as like one of those backwards cliffhanger endings. It brings closure but also makes me feel like we are moving onward to something else and to stay tuned. What you got up your sleeve here, @ghost ? This is a really beautiful song though. I'm amazed at the prominent bass and drums while keeping it consistently light. Vocals have a really wide range and solid tone too. I'd like to know who this is. I'm really digging the sort of jazz phrasing between choruses/verses too. 

I absolutely fell in love with this mix and I wish I could have posted about it sooner. This mix not only took me on a journey of nostalgia, but it also brought me through a wave of emotions. I feel that the tracks in this mix match the photo perfectly. Even though a lot of the tracks are a bit upbeat, they're light and easy listening. Others have more classical vibes or jazz vibes and some have a variation of all these things. The photo has the statue of Mary surrounded in more of a nature setting. Nature always makes me think of clean and pure and innocence when it hasn't been tampered with. So I think the idea of the Statue of Mary in such a surrounding was a perfect image to help portray and set an expectation on what to be heard on this mix. @ghost really did an amazing job and this mix has actually inspired me to go music hunting again. Thank you so much to @CAT5 for hosting this trade-off this time around and my partner for making such an amazing mix. 

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@Seimeisen

you turned out to be a tough critic! im destroyed 。゚( ゚இωஇ゚)゚。
my idea was like that: the first part, more dark and heavy, describes the first character, then there is intermission track, next part is more cute and whiny, describing the second one, and the last track by grimes expresses tranquility after they became one~
but im glad you still enjoyed the mix after all! hope this tradeoff was a pleasant experience for you too~

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@togz  Oh my gosh...I CAN'T BELIEVE I FORGOT TO GIVE YOU THE CORRECT TRACKLIST.

 

giphy.gif?cid=19f5b51a5c922e9f71562e5159

 

I swear that wasn't on purpose to torture you haha. For listening on my phone it's easier to just put the artist under one name so that's why it was like that.

 

So sorry about that! Here's the actual tracklist:

 

1. Rentrer en Soi - en soi

2. Dir en grey - Garden (You had it!)

3. the GazettE - Shiawase na hibi

4. La Mule - Prism

5. Satsuki - La Lune

6. Alice Nine - Atmosphere

7. Rentrer en Soi - Hamon Tsutau Mema (correeeect)

8. Kagrra - Satsuki

9. Screw - Hakusetsu to mau

10. 12012 - alone

11. 9goats black out - Nuit Blanche de L'aurore

 

Now, with that out of the way...I'm so glad you liked the mix! And I'm more glad that you also felt that sense of peace or reflection through the songs and imagery. This was an interesting mix for me because, same with you, it's a nostalgia bomb. And, it's the first mix in a while that I've made using soley Japanese (and specifically vkei) artists. 

 

I 100% agree with the points you made on the weaker parts of the mix.

 

5 hours ago, togz said:

7. Hamon Tsutau Mema - Rentrer en Soi (? i could be wrong?) - 3.5/5

You know, if this is who I think it is... I've met Satsuki on more than one ocassion and he even complimented my singing. I think he's talented and I like some of his solo stuff but I could never really get in to this band. I don't know if it's because I just have a bias of not being in to this band but the transition was a bit of a hiccup for me. But, the tone of the song over all fits with it cohesively. So I don't think it's a bad addition it's just not my jam.

I honestly was looking for a more fitting track to use than the ReS song, but I just couldn't find anything in my library.

 

5 hours ago, togz said:

9. Hakusetsu to mau - SCREW - 3.5/5

I was never really a fan of SCREW myself, more so their newer stuff. I just don't really like the vocals which is unfortunate as the musical aspect of even this song alone is really good. It fits, but again not really something of my taste. 

I also can't stand his earlier vocal work 😂

 

Super stoked to have been partners this time around! Now I gotta go listen to more fantastic drugstore.

Edited by ghost

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My partner was @Lestat and they sent me a largely post-punk/new wave themed mix, titled "Mors Geminos". Wwwwwhich is the name of the painting by Adam Burke they chose as their image. In their words:

 

"For me, he unveils a sort of mystic and unreal world that I am somehow always craving for...  I chose this particular work of him because it feels inviting, imaginary beings beckoning for a living, breathing creature to join their dimension, to become lost for a little over an hour... Gloominess with a light spring in its step."

 

25994900_1628908630556881_31576986701990

Spoiler

01 植松伸夫 - "おきざりの ちいさな…" (5/5)

 

The first track is an orchestral piece, perhaps being reminiscent of film music. It certainly has

the spirit of an exposition, of the beginning of a journey. A minute in, overtop the orchestra, a

female voice appears, not singing, but simply speaking in a slightly worried or urgent tone. The

instrumental is beautiful and engaging, but above all else, works excellently with the spoken word.

With what little of her monologue I understand, it compliments her speech and tone well. It has an

element of eeriness, but not in a decrepit sense. Simply mysterious. As I stare tirelessly into the

image, I begin to understand its nature is dark but fantastical, not peril alone. It's rare to find

a track that does spoken word elegantly, this absolutely is going in my library.

 

02 KA.F.KA - "夜明け前~Before the Dawn~" (2/5)

 

This song begins with a pulsating synth arpeggio, soon to be met with a dismal clean guitar, light

electronic percussion, and a wistful "classic" sounding guitar solo. No shreds here, just pure

blues. The track evolves into a synth driven rock track with a lead vocal combination that can only

remind me vaguely of old Misa projects. There is an instrumental riff-oriented section halfway

through that signals a slight change in feeling, towards something more playful. But this is soon

met by anguished vocals coming from the sides and a return to the soulful lead guitar. I wasn't

too much of a fan of what the vocalist does in the first half of the track, but I really like it in the

second half, as he pulls out long notes from his being as if he were a ghost or apparition in this

mountainous scene. The track ends somewhat abruptly and a few seconds of the same arpeggiating

synth guide us out the end. I loved the clean guitars on this track and a few of the vocal moments,

but otherwise did not find it too exciting.


03 Böhm - "Possessed Love" (4/5)

 

Without anytime for doubt, Possessed Love draws attention to its iconic basslines which set an

explorative and mysterious atmosphere. Explorative like you are being careful where you step.

Japanese New Wave, I suppose is the appropriate term for this? Peripheral guitars, straightforward

drumming, big reverbs, and vocals that drag on in a cool way. The main riff of this song portrays

a very clear feeling, a night time feeling. With the exception of a few awkward vocal moments,

this song wins hard in terms of charm factor. What isn't achieved through songwriting alone is

made up for in sonic aesthetics. At this point, and with the picture in mind, it should be very clear

to anyone what this mix is "about". Not literally, but in an intangible essence.

 

04 Allnude -" Eye Mask" (4/5)

 

Perfectly eerie tremolo guitars and a worbling sine type synth that can only be described as

adorable yet ghostly. This track does well to excite the listener in its first 15 seconds. Somewhat

similar to the last track in feeling (or atleast coherent to it), I find myself favoring the verse to

the chorus again. While again straightforward rock otherwise, the pre-chorus introduces an

organ synth and ushers in a feeling perhaps a bit too un-creepy for the rest of the track. I have

my doubts, but before long the worbly synths return and an extremely effective guitar solo

saves the day. Amazing melodic phrasing in the guitar solo -- very memorable, and totally

excessive whammy (or some tremolo pedal) which suits the track as well. At moments, it almost

sounds like the soundtrack for a skeleton masquerade (as corny as that sounds, I promise its

convincing). Great tired music.

 

05 Assylum Party - "La Tourmente" (4/5)

 

For the duration of the introduction of the track, it is heavily synth-based, with some clean

guitars following a very similar tonal palette to all of the other clean guitars included in the

mix so far. Everything feels in congruence. After a somewhat pensive intro, big pounding drums

that are either electronic or super gated and compressed steal the show.

(Retrospectively, these are electronic). Makes me think of New Order and once the guitar

hook has repeated a few times anything with a soul will be sold (lol wordplay).

Presumably speaking French, the vocals don't strike me as very notable, but they do suit the

style well. Definitely post-punk, I'd just like a little more creativity with the vocal melodies.

The main "duh-duh" floor tom groove of this song along with the guitar fill after every

8th bar are the highlights and have taken all of my love. While some moments can be lackluster

compared to how cool the aforementioned part is, I can still give in to the song in general.

I don't know why, it again makes me think of some kind of formal or maybe a school dance,

but in a cool mysterious way. (In case you haven't been paying attention, the vibe of

Mors Geminos is eerie and mysterious (but in a cool somewhat explorative and

not completely nihilistic way).

 

06 Mannequin Neurose - "Myoyaku" (2/5)

 

Phaser-y mostly clean somewhat crunchy guitar intro. The sound of the guitars in this

mix was carefully selected. A guitar riff forms, roomy and real sounding drums with a

subtle bassline enter the premises. Then, a little more than a minute in, heavily stylized

male "draggin' on" (is this a thing? you know what I mean. maybe.) vocals grab one's

attention. The phaser/modulation effect on the voice is very upfront and deliberate.

While the vocals evolve somewhat, the rest of the track remains rather consistent, not

swaying from its initial drum groove throughout its duration. Distortion and feedback

delay effects are the main thing to excite the ears as the track slowly fades out. While

nothing is done wrong in this case, I just wish the instrumental was more exciting.  It's

hard to say if the vocal effects will be enough to bring me back for more listens.

 

07 Tribulation - "Music From The Other" (4/5)

 

For the first time in the mix, it takes a very noticeable change in direction thematically.

This track begins loud and unafraid. It says to you: "metal". Big distorted guitars, cavernous

drums. The vocal certainly feels of the blackened variety of screams, though the instrumental

reminds me mostly of post-metal bands, and probably some atmospheric black metal stuff

(but I really don't listen to that much so I wouldn't know). Also, doom-y. The melodic work

with the lead guitars laid over the droning rhythm chords, along with the super reverberant,

pained vocals, paint a really clear picture, one not far off from Mors Geminos. This is where

the dark side of mysteriousness, of that foggy haze, is finally internalized. What started

as a mindless convoy into the unknown is now showing wear and tear on the psyche.

This track handles the sometimes prevalent issue of "slowness meaning low melodic output"

I find with a lot of post-metal/doom bands. Doesn't feel like too much space is

wasted musically, without betraying some of the simplicity inherent to the style.

The track ends in a dramatic swell of all the instruments tremolo. This is the red trees.

 

08 Gara - "La Arrière-Monde" (4/5)

 

Probably the creepiest intro yet. Bass guitar, cymbal, and synth. An occasional wounded

utterance or cry from a deep male vocal. Feels like I'm listening to one of those interlude

tracks on a Madeth Gray'll tape. This is an appropriate continuation to the previous track,

emotionally. However, it aligns sonically more with this post-punk type tracks before it,

in its more dated sound. After a number of shrieks, the track seems to pick up, only for a

moment as the drums play a building rhythm. It strips back down. It's repetitive but atmospheric.

There is suffering in Mors Geminos, enough to make one re-assess if the novelty involved is

worth its entrance. This is not the sound of the deer, but of the skulls.

Maybe too simple by some standards, but I vibe with it.

 

09 Diastereomer - "Mothersun" (2.5/5)

 

Synth intro and some kind of white noise sounding drone that resembles wind when

overtop the main synth. A minute in a repeating stacatto bass synth starts, followed by a

drum loop and we're back in the new wave. The plucky harpsichord synths seal the deal

on this sound. The vocals are low level, English, and physically, sound like they are coming

from many directions all at once, rather than dead center mono. It is dramatic in an elegant manner.

The mountain has beauty afterall. Instrumentally, one of my less favorite of the

post-punk/new wave style tracks in this mix. Contrastingly, my favorite vocal. The vocal is effected,

but more subtly than "Myokaku". It has a mild flutter to it. On its own, this song overstays its

welcome at almost 7 minutes in length, but for the imaginative mood of the mix, I'll allow it.

 

10 Modern Eon - "The Grass Still Grows"

 

Toms. Toms that don't sound like toms. Toms that sound like someone tapping their pencil on a desk.

But charming toms. So it's okay. Heavily bass driven, with some occasional single-plucked

guitar notes and a weird underwater bubbles synth. The vocal totally has the new-wave sound

to his voice and the song feels extremely convincing with this facet to secure its identity.

Stripping back down to toms alone is slightly uneventful, but the bass returns to captivate

your interest. Out of nowhere, an excellent saxophone solo enters the spotlight as the guitars

return to the memorable motif of the track. It is eerie still, but with something victorious about it.

 

11 森田童子 - "ふるえているネ" (5/5)

 

After the last track's somewhat abrupt end, this feels unexpected. Soft piano and female vocals,

soon to be accompanied by crying strings. This is another noticeable shift in direction of the mix,

but also a call to the beginning of the story, with the theme of the orchestra and female vocal.

Even at times, the vocal sounds without energy, as if they can only speak the end of some words.

The violin has a brief moment of focus and does a beautiful job. The strings swell on and on

for the remainder of the track, with occasional diddling around on the piano's highest keys

in the right ear. This is tragedy. It's beautiful, but something went wrong. Or maybe something

went right. It is the climax. Maybe this is what is inside the light nearby the deer. Or what the owl ---

Just as you seem to put your tongue on it, the strings end instantly. What sounds like the

ambiguous clambering of a tape as it is removed from a tape machine fills the

final seconds of the track. Very dramatic.

 

12 SCULLA - Ashamed (3.5/5)

 

We return to those oh-so-distinguished guitars for what can only be the

post-punk-gothic-visual climax. Similar format to all of the other tracks of this style, I find the

main riff particularly engaging and really enjoy how the drums swap between half time and

normal speed (or normal speed and  double time). Some mild progression goes a long way.

The song has a catchy chorus, and a stabby unison post-chorus riff that draws much more

from rock-influences than what the rest of the song seems to be going for, a bit out of

place to some, but it just makes me think of old visual kei bands (again). The first half of the

song folds back over on itself and mostly repeats. This stabby riff ending the track as it increases speed.

It somehow feels like a return to the reckless wandering of some of the earlier tracks,

in context to the painting. Maybe (in this imaginary story I'm inventing in my mind to parallel the image)

the main character(/you) dies when the last song cuts out, and this is just the resounding

vestiges of what is ultimately the nature of this place. Your journey has ended, another skeleton

added to the scenery, but the spooky atmosphere that defines this area will live on.

 

Overall, I think Lestat did a great job with their mix. It suited the picture so well that I had pretty much forgotten what they wrote about why they chose it when I was listening to it and when I went back to find out, it was the same thing I was enjoying about it: fantasizing about its alluring mysterious nature. Foreboding, but not downright evil. Uncertain, both for better and worse. While the musical theme was very strong, I think the black post-metal track was a little out of place in that regard. Or maybe it would have felt more thematic if there had been another few tracks of this nature as well.

 

I found a few post-punk tracks I'm gonna be cycling through my listens now, along with some weird orchestral new age shit that are going in my 1337 emo playlists. :D

 

Thanks @Lestat!

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