AQUAPLUS VOCAL COLLECTION VOL.6

After way over a year of VOL.5 (which we did release, but unfortunately the torrent is lost), VOL.6 is finally out. Most of the songs on the list should be familiar to you.

Tracklist:
1. just now [Clap]
2. Kibou no Kaze [Motoda Emi]
3. Kimi dake no Tabiji [Suara]
4. SADAME [Yuzuki Ryouka]
5. Kimi ga Tame [Suara]
6. Remote Viewing [Okui Masami]
7. Ichibanboshi [Suara]
8. Heart to Heart [Uehara Rena]
9. Cosmos no You ni [Uehara Rena]
10.Shin Utawarerumono no Theme [Koyama Tsuyoshi]
11.just now -ReMIX- [Clap]
12.Heart to Heart -ReMIX- [Uehara Rena]

The one song that needs to be mentioned is “Heart to Heart”.  To me, it is one of the best Leaf songs, if not of all game songs. If you have my mp3 song pack, Nakayama Arisa’s version is there. As you can see, there is a different version in this album, performed by Uehara Rena. Both of them are official, one being the original ToHeart2 OP, and the other being the OP of ToHeart2 AnotherDays, the sequel game. Which version do you prefer? I would like you all to vote in the poll at the bottom of this post. Below are the links to full samples of them for your convenience:

Heart to Heart [Nakayama Arisa] (ToHeart2 OP)
Heart to Heart [Uehara Rena] (ToHeart2 AnotherDays OP)

FF – Fate Festival (nope, not Final Fantasy)

First of all, Happy New Year everyone! Best wishes for 2010. 🙂

On 12/23, 3 Fate-related CDs were released on the same day, hence this post’s title “Fate Festival” (yeah, I made it up. It’s not a CD/series’ name or anything). We already released the first one, Tainaka Sachi’s “Mariage -tribute to Fate-“, earlier this week. In case you missed it, it’s Tainaka performing various songs from the Fate series, mainly the game ones (except “disillusion”, of which she is the original singer):

Tracklist:
1. disillusion
2. days
3. memory
4. Over The Mountain
5. Sakura Saite
6. hollow
7. Bokutachi no Mirai
8. Ougon no Kagayaki
9. Link
10.Alive

In case you have never heard the original versions or forgot how they sound, here comes the second CD, “Fate/Recapture -original songs collection-“, with the (original) singer’s name in [ ]:

Tracklist:
1. THIS ILLUSION [M.H.]
2. days [CHINO]
3. memory [M.H.]
4. Over The Mountain [rhu]
5. Sakura Saite [Haruka Futaki]
6. hollow [NUMBER 201 feat. rhu]
7. ataraxia [rhu]
8. Bokutachi no Mirai [NUMBER 201 feat. rhu]
9. Ougon no Kagayaki [NUMBER 201 feat. MAKI]
10.Link [NUMBER 201 feat. rhu]
11.Yume no Owari [Kawai Eri]
12.Alive [NUMBER 201 feat. Aramaki Youko]*
13.THIS ILLUSION -recapture ver.- [M.H.]
14.hollow -201 remix- [NUMBER 201 feat. rhu]
*Aramaki Youko is the same person as “MAKI”

Since there’s a collection for games, you can imagine there’s also a collection for the anime. Introducing the last CD, “ricordanza -Fate/stay night TV song collection-“, it features most of the songs from the show.

Tracklist:
1. disillusion [Tainaka Sachi]
2. Kirameku Namida ha Hoshi ni [Tainaka Sachi]
3. Anata ga Ita Mori [Manami]*
4. Hikari [Manami]*
5. La sola [Sasaki Hisako]
6. Kimi to no Ashita [Tainaka Sachi]
7. Tooi Yume [Kawasumi Ayako aka Saber]
8. KIRARI [Ueda Kana aka Tohsaka Rin]
9. Egao Hitotsu de [Shitaya Noriko aka Matou Sakura]
10.imitation [Tainaka Sachi]
*Manami is the singer of Jukai

How do you like 2010 starting with the Fate Festival? Better yet, the festival doesn’t end here. In case you didn’t know already, the F/sn movie, Unlimited Blade Works, will be in theatre later this month on 1/23. Here’s the trailer for you to get hyped for it:

Shinkai Makoto Sakuhin Image Album “Promise”

Written by Tenmon, performed by Eminence Symphony Orchestra, requested by many people (yes, I got multiple PMs asking if we were going to release it), here comes the much expected album “Promise”. Featuring orchestral arrangement of music from “Byousoku 5 Centimeter”, “Kumo no Mukou, Yakusoku no Basho”, “Hoshi no Koe”, and “Kanojo to Kanojo no Neko”, there’s no wonder why this album gets all the attention it does. Before I give my comment, let’s take a look at the tracklist:

1. One more time, One more chance (Instrumental)
2. Omoide ha Tooku no Hibi
3. Kanae no Kimochi
4. Kumo no Mukou, Yakusoku no Basho Main Theme
5. Futari no Keikaku / Kibou to Akogare
6. Sayuri
7. Kumo no Mukou, Yakusoku no Basho Main Theme (Piano Version)
8. Futari no Kattou
9. Kimi no Koe (Instrumental)
10.THROUGH THE YEARS AND FAR AWAY
11.Mikako kara no Tayori
12.Kanojo to Kanojo no Neko Main Theme
13.Kanojo to Kanojo no Neko (Piano Version)

Okay, you might think I would be praising this album, but to your surprise, I won’t. It doesn’t mean I dislike this album, but there is one major thing bugs me about it. This is supposed to be a orchestral album, however there’s too much non-orchestral instruments used. You will hear a lot of guitar and piano (well, this one is acceptable, plus we all know how Tenmon is fond of piano, but piano should not play a major role in an orchestral album) in it. Besides, too much focus is placed on string instruments. I would like to hear a more balanced arrangement, with more usage of woodwind and brass instruments. And, even though it’s said to be performed by a symphony orchestra, to me it feels more like a chamber orchestra’s performance. Therefore, in the orchestral sense, this album is an disappointment. If you just see it as a general arrangement album though, then it’s pretty nice. My favorite track would be “THROUGH THE YEARS AND FAR AWAY” (again, too much piano and guitar, but I love it in the non-orchestral sense).

DDL for FLAC + New additions to mp3 player

Thanks to kache for providing the space, we are once hosting the FLAC files for DDL again (and mp3 too, of course). You can find the links on our Download page. While uploading the files to our new space, I have added 3 more songs to the collection.

1. Inori [KOKIA] (her own performance of the Gundam song she wrote for Feldt Grace)
2. Kimi no Koe [Heart] (if not because it’s featured in one of the late albums, I had totally forgotten this song ^^;. Btw, I did think about adding “Through the Years & Far Away” before, but the Engrish of the song just really bugs me)
3. Suzu no Naru Basho [Rita] (a very heartwarming song. It’s just impossible for me to forget about this song once I heard it)

KOKIA – Coquillage -The Best Collection II-

Almost 4 years after releasing “pearl -The Best Collection-“, here finally comes the second one. And it’s not disappointing at all.

Tracklist:
1. Inori
2. Ave Maria
3. Atatakai Basho
4. song of pocchong~Shizuku no Uta
5. Douke
6. What a wonderful world
7. Kono Mune no Kurushimi ga Itooshii Hodo ni Ikite
8. Nukumori -aigakikoeru- (with strings)
9. infinity
10.say goodbye & good day
11.Chiisana Uta
12.Sekai no Owari ni
13.Kokoro no Rousoku
14.Everlasting

Special Limited Disc
1. Arigatou… (the Coquillage edtion)
2. Candle in the Heart

I pretty much like the whole album, but my favorites are track 1 “Inori” and track 10 “say goodbye & good day”. For “Inori”, it’s was actually first performed by someone else. If you still remember the Gundam 00 Voice Actor Single of Feldt Grace, the song was first featured there, sung by Takagahi Ayahi. However, for KOKIA to perform it herself (as a side note, the music and lyrics are written by her too), this is the first time. No offense to Takagahi, but KOKIA’s version is way, way more enjoyable. What do you think?

Rita – mighty

Rita’s new album — a collection of mainly games’ theme songs — “mighty“, might not be all that mighty, but it has its merits. To me, including Signal Heart’s OP&ED would be the biggest one, with the ED “refrain nostalgia” specifically. In fact, if you have read the post below, that song was one of the 10 new additions to my mp3 player, added just a week before this album is released (the version I added was ripped from the maxi single).

Here’s the tracklist:

1. mighty!
2. Signal Heart
3. refrain nostalgia
4. Kokoro no Tobira
5. Yumeiro Animato
6. Le baiser de l’ange -Tenshi no Kuchiduke-
7. Suzu no Naru Basho
8. Honto ni Hoshii Mahou no Jumon
9. Kimi no Na
10.Kondo ha Honki ni Honki?
11.Korekara memories
12.Yume wo Miru Yume
13.PAST COLORS SIGHED AGAIN
14.Ano Sora wo Mezashite

Personal picks are track 7 and, of course, 3. How about yours?

New additions to mp3 player

Added 10 new songs. You can find them in Download section.

1. Atarashii Katachi [Chata] (one of the 2 choices I picked from solfa album)
2. Blue Rainy Days [Horie Yui] (being a hocchan fan, it shouldn’t be surprising that I picked something from her latest album. This is one of the 2. Strictly speaking there’s nothing special about this song, but it’s highly listenable in different moods)
3. cise ek [Shimotsuki Haruka] (vocal version of one of my favorite Maeda Jun BGMs, “cise kor”)
4. everytime you kissed me [Emily Bindiger] (yet another collaboration between Kajiura Yuki and Emily Bindiger. When it comes to Kajiura’s English song, I think Emily was just born for it. Anyone else agrees?)
5. immature [Shimotsuki Haruka] (the other choice I picked from “5” soundtrack. My favorite song from it. I know alot of people go for “Gin no Chizu” instead, but it just sounds weird to me as a song)
6. Kimi no Shiranai Monogatari [supercell] (Bakemonogatari ED. Catchy song)
7. Kimi no Soba ni [Horie Yui] (as I mentioned before, I prefer her passionate songs. I think she should pour more emotion into this song though)
8. only my railgun [fripSide] (10K+ downloads just on torrent alone. That should tell you something)
9. refrain nostalgia – Full ver. – [Rita] (I bet most of you have never heard of this one. It’s the ED of a recent game, “Signal Heart”. I was only trying it out at first, turned out to be a very nice surprise)
10.waiting [Rita] (the other one of the 2 choices I picked from solfa album)

Shimotsuki Haruka – Griotte no Nemurihime

After much expectation, here comes her new album, Griotte no Nemurihime. A RPG-story-style fantasy album — yes, it will remind you of Sound Horizon, except without all those narrations and sounds a lot more… acceptable/beautiful/your-word-of-choice. 😛 Let’s take a look at the tracklist:

1. Horobiru no Ri
2. Kienai Kakera
3. Erabareta Tami
4. Ohimesama to Doukeshi
5. Buchi no Oukoku
6. Hitori Yume
7. Sora Watashi
8. Kizuna no Hana
9. Shuuen no Koku he
10.Hane ni Sugaru Mono
11.Kooru Sekai
12.Gyaku Mawari no Inochi
13.FEL FEARY WEL.

You think that would be the tracklist, but actually, it’s not. Let’s take a look at the real tracklist:

1. Horobiru no Kotowari
2. Kienai Uta
3. Erabareta Tami
4. Ohimesama to Doukeshi
5. Madara no Kuni
6. Hitori Yume
7. Sora Watashi
8. Tsunagari no Hana
9. Owari no Toki he
10.Hane ni Sugaru Mono
11.Kooru Sekai
12.Gyaku Mawari no Inochi
13.FEL FEARY WEL.

If you still can’t figure out why the track titles are romanized that way after listening to the whole album, hop onto our IRC channel and ask me.

Edit on 4/30/2010: apparently according to Shimotsukin in her concert on 11/23/2009, track 5’s title should be “Madara no Oukoku”. She did sing it as “Kuni” though in the lyrics. Same for track 2’s title, it should be “Kienai Kakera”, while in the lyrics she sang it as “Uta”. Oh well.

KOTOKO’s 4th Album – Epsilon no Fune

After almost 3 years, KOTOKO has put out this new album, Epsilon no Fune. Majority of the songs are upbeat ones as you can expect, however there is one comparatively slow song, namely “scene”. There is also an English song which she performed together with Kazuya Takase, who wrote “Real Onigokko”, “Hayate no Gotoku!”, and “BLAZE”, etc. Let’s take a look at the full tracklist:

1. ε -Epsilon-
2. Real Onigokko
3. -∞-DRIVE
4. scene
5. Ame to Guitar
6. Genkai Daha
7. Monera no Kizuna
8. Hayate no Gotoku!
9. RI←SU→KU
10.HELLION
11.Geoglyphs
12.BLAZE
13.LITTLE BABY NOTHING

Overall it’s a pretty satisfying album (that’s a very high compliment, by the way. I didn’t really expect much from KOTOKO lately, but this album impresses me), however I do have one big complaint: since there’s “BLAZE”, why there’s no “Sociometry”? It’s one of KOTOKO’s best songs as of late, and they just had to leave it out! I’m truly, truly disappointed at whoever made/didn’t make that decision. They did redeem it though by including the special CD of “Hitorigoto”, which features the 2009 version and 2001 original version.

Finally, the PV of the cover song, “ε -Epsilon-“:

5 -Five- Sound Album yukar (Fixed Version)

Before I start, I know quite many of you already have this album, but it’s extremely likely that the one you got is the bugged version. There are two bugged versions: one is the original bugged version, meaning the original commerical disc is bugged; the other one is a bugged rip of the fixed version, meaning it’s a rip of the fixed commercial disc but bugged due to technical error during ripping. To tell if it’s the original bugged version, listen to track 3 and 9 of DISC 1. If the music of the two are the same, then it’s the original bugged version (the booklet/scans have errors too by the way, if you have them); to tell if it’s the bugged rip of the fixed version, listen to the 2:00 mark of track 1 of DISC 2. If there’s a skip between 2:00 and 2:01, then it’s the bugged rip of the fixed version. There is also a third version out there that combines the rip of fixed version and the scans of original version that have errors. To tell if the scans are the ones of original bugged version, check the lyrics page of OP&ED (track 9 and 10). The original one with errors has 3 columns of lyrics for OP (“Kaze no Kotowari Remix ver”), while the fixed one only has 1 column for OP.

Fist of all, I’m honored to introduce you this album. There are plenty of talented music composers out there, but since most of them make a living on music, they have to keep writing new works to keep their career going even when they don’t have the inspiration. As a result, you will hear mediocre compositions from them from time to time. However, there are a few exceptions. Maeda Jun is definitely one of them. I would assume you already know who he is since you’re reading this, but if you don’t, he participated in AIR and CLANNAD’s (Kanon’s too actually, but he wrote only 2 tracks in it, plus the so-famous “Last regrets”) soundtracks. I’m sure you have heard his famous BGMs such as Natsukage from AIR and Nagisa from CLANNAD (i.e. the background music of Dango Daikazoku). Just when you think soundtracks can’t get any better than AIR, CLANNAD, and Tomoyo After’s, he have brought us yet another surprise with this one. Even better, unlike the ones mentioned above of which he wrote some of the tracks, this one he is the major composer. In fact, he wrote the whole DISC 1 (and DISC 3 are vocal versions of some of the BGMs on DISC 1, except track 8 is adapted from DISC 2). Tomoyo After and AIR soundtracks have always ranked at the top on my list, and now 5 (yukar) has joined them to be my top 3.

While Maeda Jun is one of the major attractions of this album, the other one is not any less well-known, but in vocal part instead. She is no other than our beloved Shimotsuki Haruka. She performs all the songs in this album, with the exception of track 5 of DISC 3 “Gin no Chizu”, which also features guest vocal of Rita, Chata, and Katakiri Rekka. If you still remember, LonE has released the maxi single with OP and ED before. The full versions of OP and ED are also featured in this album, so in case you missed that one, you will still get to hear them. Other than OP and ED (which are both very nice songs written by Maeda Jun, by the way), DISC 3 of this album features the vocal versions of some of the BGMs of DISC 1, meaning that they are all written by Maeda Jun. As mentioned above, there is one exception, which is track 8 “immature”, adapated from track 1 of DISC 2, written by Kyou (aka Higawara Yuu). Ironically, that song is my most favorite of the album other than OP and ED. Maybe that means Maeda’s BGMs should just stay as BGMs. That reminds me, that one time we were discussing about Key on IRC, I suggested that Maeda is better at writing BGMs, while Orito Shinji (i.e. the one who wrote “Tori no Uta”) is better at writing songs. Anyone else agrees?

Tracklist:
DISC 1
1. Kaze no Kotowari
2. cise kor*
3. have a stroll
4. Yuki no Ko
5. Mori no Ko
6. SensitiveSoul Inst
7. Fuyu no Hidamari cise*
8. Bokka Musou
9. over the snow
10.Sora no Katari
11.Kumo Nagarete
12.Yuki no Ashiato
13.end of promise
14.perch_Ikoi
15.soldiers
16.Kanashimi no Mori
17.iruska*
18.Kono Chi no Sakebi
19.SensitiveSoul
20.Gensou Fuukei
21.Fuyu no Hidamari arke*
22.Eien

DISC 2
1. Little Snow
2. ihunke*
3. Okite no Ori
4. Endless Pain
5. Stew no Kaori
6. Itetsuku Daichi
7. imeru*
8. Shiro no Kouya
9. Tomorrow Song
10.rera*
11.Kaze no Kotowari short ver

DISC 3
1. prologue
2. cise ek*
3. Koi no Mama de
4. proudness
5. Gin no Chizu
6. Tabidatsu Tori
7. echo
8. immature
9. Kaze no Kotowari Remix ver
10.Eien Remix ver
11.epilogue

Note: the ones end with * mean the titles are written in/contains Ainu language. I believe most of you have never heard of Ainu language before. Wikipedia has an article about Ainu language that you can read up if you are interested to find out what it is. Many thanks to hisana/hisahisa and tomoyoafter for helping me with figuring out the romaji of all the Ainu titles.

 

Finally, I would like you all to participate in the polls below. First one is to choose your most favorite song of this album, excluding OP and ED:

 

Second one is to choose your most favorite BGM of Maeda Jun. Below are the links to full samples of them for your convenience:

Yume no Ato (from Kanon)
Natsukage (from AIR)
Nagisa (from CLANNAD)
hope (from Tomoyo After)
cise kor (from 5 -Five-)

 

Also, how would you rank the 5 BGMs? A couple of us tried to do it, and it turned out to be really hard. Let us know in the comment.