fly to high

Suzuki Ami without Nakata: yay or nay?
January 30, 2009, 6:38 pm
Filed under: Suzuki Ami

I’ll admit it without shame: I only recently like Suzuki Ami’s music solely because Nakata Yasutaka was producing her and together, they made some mad fierce tracks. I actually don’t like her previous pop works but her works with Nakata alone made her one of the top ten artists on my playlist. And I know it’s just not me who has this interest: her Nakata produced Supreme Show album had an almost 20% increase in sales over the average of her previous two studio albums despite not really being promoted insanely more in any way.

When I heard her next single “Reincarnation” wasn’t going to be produced by Nakata, I thought that would be the end of me listening to her… but then I heard m-flo’s Taku was producing her instead. M-flo has some fly tunes, and I thought I’d give it a try before judging.

I’ll start with the positives first: Ami’s voice is good enough to not have any vocoding done and still sound fairly decent. The video is gorgeous, switching between slow motion shots and flashy dance scenes. Also, Ami seems to have fully embraced becoming something like the Kylie Minogue, club queen of Japan, and the girl rocks the swanky flashy scenes in this PV.

But the song is just terrible. The slow parts are good at first, but seem monotone and lacking of energy and charm. But even they’re good compared to the chorus, where Ami can’t seem to decide whether she’s shout-rapping or singing. It’s too mellow for shouting and rapping, but too rough for actual singing. There’s just no tune to most of the vocals, and the backing track is too repetitive and monotone itself to make up for the bland vocals.

So as far as this single goes, I’m going to have to go with a sound and resounding “nay.” ‘Reincarnation” is something I can jump to at a techno club, but not something I would listen to at home.

But I think I will give Ami another chance because “Reincarnation” is not a case of Ami not being able to pull off a song – it’s a case of a badly written song. Sorry Taku, but I don’t think anyone can do justice to a song like this, with most of the chorus being a tuneless line backed with a weak backing track composed of repetitive beats and not much else.

The only saving grace to this single might be its B side cover of Me & My’s  “Dub-I-Dub” – probably better known to many of us as one of the prolific DDR songs. (Not lying, this song brings back good memories of the days when everyone still played DDR instead of guitar hero.) But otherwise, I’d be willing to completely ignore this single and reevaluate Suzuki Ami on her next release.


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