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Gulu Gulu - ぐるぐる流出音源集 [サイレン盤]

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I'd heard a lot about these guys and I really enjoyed their first singles and whilst this album isn't bad it doesn't feel like the group have released the best that they could.

On one hand it feels and sounds like a throwback to the chunky metal variation of Visual Kei we had between 2007-2010 (not exact) but because of that a lot it feels dated and like we've heard it before, an example 火炎瓶 sounds so strikingly similar to Lynch's 'Enemy' from the opening low riff to the shout before the main theme starts and the actual main theme itself.  Songs like 火炎瓶 can have such a creepy and ominous vibe to them yet fail to capitalise on it, SE and track intro's offer melodies and tones that sound straight from haunted house rides yet the band rarely go anywhere with it. There are definitely some good elements to it with songs like おやすみ。that offers a more unique sound than the rest of the album and 「悪人」which shows the band are more than just one note.

 

In terms of individual instruments the vocals are almost like a highlight reel and whilst they do truly show off a variety of styles and techniques they can become really obnoxious with the for lack of a better term child like singing in the verse of 火炎瓶 or the horrible way he sings 'twink' in おやすみ。. Though there are songs like 「悪人」which whilst could be accused of over singing do highlight both a nice falsetto as well as the vocalists natural singing range. The guitar work is serviceable and mostly chord driven, you might hear one riff as a bridge or a light melody in the verse that isn't a chugging chord (although 「悪人」has a great solo and is the only track where the guitar can truly shine) but that's it. The bass sadly gets a bit drowned out but it does have it's moments like in 汚れた豚 where it provides rhythm as well as actual bass lines rather than strictly following

the guitar and this style of playing pops up in a few songs. As for the drums, they range from the standard thrashing metal style to completely ruining the rhythm of some songs, it doesn't happen all that often but there are a few instances where there's too many snare and bass kick hits and comes off as sloppy.

 

Overall the release was a bit disappointing, I don't think the band are bad and I actually really like the vocalist but it feels like the release as a whole needed more quality control.

 

What's everyone else's opinion?

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it's an easy listen, but objectively imo it's nothing special - the hype surrounding these guys makes it sound like they're the next big thing, but I honestly fail to see the appeal. the songs all sound the same other than 「悪人」and おやすみ。and I still cannot tell 火炎瓶 and 汚れた豚 apart after 5 or more listens. kagerou did the heavy thing with much more diversity and catchy tunes back in early 00s.

 

also the plagiarism in the chorus of 「悪人」is cheap and makes me hate it

Edited by saishuu

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11 hours ago, saishuu said:

it's an easy listen, but objectively imo it's nothing special - the hype surrounding these guys makes it sound like they're the next big thing, but I honestly fail to see the appeal. the songs all sound the same other than 「悪人」and おやすみ。and I still cannot tell 火炎瓶 and 汚れた豚 apart after 5 or more listens. kagerou did the heavy thing with much more diversity and catchy tunes back in early 00s.

 

also the plagiarism in the chorus of 「悪人」is cheap and makes me hate it

+1. What most draws me to Gulu is Ai's definitely unique intonation, Lanju's cool skills (although not as exploited in his previous band Grieva), and overall well done production. Guys have a pretty decent budget, contrary to 95% of the other bands in the scene, so everything they do surely is gonna sound a least enjoyable. But they are far from something notable; just enjoyable clichés over and over.

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On 5/11/2020 at 8:07 PM, saishuu said:

also the plagiarism

This is hindering my enjoyment of them so far. I can't place it usually but each of their releases so (despite being good) are riddled with melodies which I feel like a recognize. Has anyone identified any while listening to them? 首輪教育のすすめ's opening guitar section for another example. I'm a fan of this lineup and there are some cool songs too but they're not quite living up to previous bands apart from the production quality.

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30 minutes ago, Elazmus said:

This is hindering my enjoyment of them so far. I can't place it usually but each of their releases so (despite being good) are riddled with melodies which I feel like a recognize. Has anyone identified any while listening to them? 首輪教育のすすめ's opening guitar section for another example. I'm a fan of this lineup and there are some cool songs too but they're not quite living up to previous bands apart from the production quality.

I wrote in a status update a few days ago, but the chorus in 「悪人」is lifted directly from abingdon boys school's Nephilim. Here (timestamped):

 

 

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Yeah I also thought this was super mediocre, and my enjoyment of their two prior singles had a good helping of wishful thinking and good will. As much as I still do like the A-sides from those, I have to say there isn't really anything there that puts them over other recent stuff from the scene that I like for me. I just love Ai's voice and aesthetic enough to color inbetween the lines thinking all of this is just a prelude to a sick second act where they bring out the big guns. 

 

Real talk: what's here are middle of the road heavy riffs that Ai is able to elevate into something that's kind of cool. The two metalcore riffs are nothing that we don't see from all the other bands too. What I wanted from this band was Ai to go all in, abandon the uwa uwa Korn shit and sing that undead school boy haunting the country road from school when the moon is full and cicadas sing shit. Maybe some Grieva-esque old school riffs too, creepy stuff like what KtK was every once in a while. Sousaku Negai, Hesonoo, you know that stuff. So far this imo just a shittier and occasionally poppier KtK that also has metalcore riffs. 

 

fourth track 0.51- is also without a doubt from something else. the fucking la la la part too I reckon. 

Edited by Disposable

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Agree with disposable...they sound too formulaic. I remember when KtK debuted with Yokusou single,that shit left me in the corner asking myself wtf happened. Like he said,Gulu Gulu just sounds like a poppier version of KtK, which is frustrating af. For while I can be satisfied simply with the fact that Ai didn't give up and still around making music instead of disappearing into the void of anonymity.

 

 

 

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3 hours ago, Disposable said:

Yeah I also thought this was super mediocre, and my enjoyment of their two prior singles had a good helping of wishful thinking and good will. As much as I still do like the A-sides from those, I have to say there isn't really anything there that puts them over other recent stuff from the scene that I like for me. I just love Ai's voice and aesthetic enough to color inbetween the lines thinking all of this is just a prelude to a sick second act where they bring out the big guns. 

Literally me listening to everything VK has put out in the recent years (yeah, even big names). Thanks for the cathartic moment @Disposable.

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One thing that I just noticed and I really miss about Ai's singing style is that deep intonation on his voice (track below for example)...he used to do that a lot in MM era,hope we can get it in the next GG's tracks.

 

 

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