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Archive for January, 2009

koda-kumi-trick
Amidst from all the controversy that swirled around her last year, Koda Kumi continually manages to be one of the top acts in Japanese music. Her 7th studio album, TRICK is in all accounts a danceable record — with the exception of 4 ballads.

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c-ute-4akogare-my-starhr1

While I’ll keep it short as my review for Koda Kumi’s new album comes right after this, I do quite like this new album by ℃-ute. It’s worth noting that while I wouldn’t put it too high of a regard; it’s, however, their best well-rounded album to date over their previous work. And much like Berryz Koubou, a few of the tracks are performed solo (Yes! all my family by Airi Suzuki, Seishun Song by Yajima Maimi), duet (Aishiteru Aishiteru by Saki Nakajima and Kanna Arihara) & a trio (One’s LIFE by Erika Umeda, Chisato Okai, and Mai Hagiwara). Those tracks do hold on their own plus it’s a great way to show the individual members what they’re capable. On the structure of the 3 singles released (Namida no Iro, FOREVER LOVE, and Edo no Temari Uta II), they do compliment the other non-singles well, making it a well-balanced album from start to finish.

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Reflection.

I’ve been thinking of a line on how to start this post, but at this point it wouldn’t seem appropriate. It’s definitely not how I (or anyone) wanted 2009 to start; Last Friday evening (16th), we lost a friend and fellow co-worker, John Oldewurtel to a fatal accident. What’s surreal is that we had gathered for a meeting that morning; I was talking to him about Rock Band, old school hockey video games and the usual Canucks updates of all things. Upon hearing the news that day, I just thought of the time when we lost our cousin nearly 2 years ago. My thoughts and prayers go out to his family.

Right now, being so far away from home and your family, where all you want is just a hug, you confide with the friends you have to lend support.

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aya-matsuura-omoi-afurete

This is quite possibly the last studio album Aya Matsuura will have under Hello! Project, with the impending mass graduation of the Elder Club in late March. In the past 7 years, dating back to her debut album First Kiss (ファーストKISS), there has been a gradual transition from upbeat and genki tunes to nice and soft ballads; with the major shift in transition from her 4th album, Naked Songs, Aya seems to have found a nice balance with her new album.

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A week back to work after a lengthy holiday break, shaking off the rust and going in head-first with teaching again. And with the recent Osaka trip draining all my money; leaving, oh, less than 15000円 (at least 13000円 committed to travel alone) until the 23rd or so. Apart from work and casually learning the ins and outs of DSLR photography, I’ve found another thing to occupy my free time: anime. I’m on a current rotation of 7 different anime series — needless to say, I’m quite hooked. More after the break.

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The weekend has come and gone, not before the Girls had their comeback performances. The perfs from MBC Music Core and SBS Inkigayo both used Way to Go and Gee, making for a lot of SNSD to watch; as far as which network had the better performance, I much preferred the latter. No word yet on their next performance(s) (which includes the comeback stage on KBS2 Music Bank). With the dawn of YouTube allowing HD content, the SNSD experience got a whole lot better. Videos after the break

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snsd-gee
With their comeback performance held until the 10th — possibly due to the condition of Sunny earlier in the week. Saturday’s performance on MBC’s Music Core went off without a hitch as the Girls had the honour of the last performance of the evening; combining the title track, Gee, as well as the second track 힘 내! (Way To Go). The Girls are off to SBS’ Inkigayo next (11th) to continue their comeback track.

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