The first Arashi single released this year is composed by Yamashita Tatsuro with lyrics by Takeuchi Mariya. I never expected a gift like this and since the day it was announced, I’ve been looking forward to listening to 復活♡LOVE (Fukkatsu Love, lit. Resurrection Love).
Last night, Aiba played the song on his radio show and I’ve been listening to it since.
I’ve been in love with Yamashita-san’s music since I heard his The Light and the Requiem in the OST of Matsujun’s Hidamari no Kanojo. A fellow Arashian, however, reminded me that he’s the one behind Ride on Time, the theme for Kimura Takuya’s Good Luck!
But I really just started listening to Yamashita-san after DamaKano and I love his music. It’s so easy to listen to and perfect for lazy weekends or a late night chill.
Then I discovered that he’s married to Mariya, a successful singer and composer in her own right, and I’ve been listening to her music a lot too.
Now imagine that musically powerful husband-and-wife combo creating music for Arashi. It can only be awesome.
I’ve read some early reviews on the song calling it as “retro” and “very ’80s”. It does have those elements, especially for the ’90s generation, but music is a cycle. What is ’80s can sound ’70s or ’60s too and to call Yamashita-san’s music as retro is kind of missing the mark because his music is timeless.
I love how Arashi’s harmony blends so well to give that trademark feel to a Yamashita composition. I have to say though that the Sho x Jun and Nino x Jun harmonies best capture the composer’s style, maybe because the blending of their voices (Sho’s raspy one, Jun’s nasal and Nino’s tenor) create that perfect bluesy vibe that is ever present in Yamashita songs. If you’ve listened to Yamashita-san’s music, you’d know what I mean.
[For those curious on the lyrics and the parts that they sing:]
Now this reminds me of that time I made a non-Arashi friend listen to Hatenai Sora. She asked me if they don’t have solo parts and sing “like a chorus” all the time and to be honest, I was stumped. I never really gave it much thought to notice who sings when (except maybe in 復活♡LOVE all because I was looking for that Yamashita sound). I know though that solo parts are a big deal in Kpop where fans would even count the number of lines given to a member of a group (I guess it really matters if you are eight or 10 in a group) but I’d be damned if I’d even count the number of lines each Arashi member sings in a song. Sure, they have their solo songs but for me, their songs ain’t really about who sings what but the entire package. It took me a while but now I can easily differentiate their voices when they sing together. It’s been said before, they are not the best singers in Jpop, and among the five, Ohno and Nino are the best singers, but when they sing together, as Neen sang in Music–“it’s like a magic”. But don’t trust me since I’m a fan.
I love the single’s cover (see photo in this post), it is very “city/urban pop” that fits into the genre Yamashita and Mariya have been known for. Like I said in this previous post, I’m glad Arashi is given the chance to work with musicians like them because it expands their sound and diversifies the kind of pop music they make. [P.S. @refiantyanggina just shared that some fans don’t like the song, which is not a surprise. I mean, fans don’t have to like everything and that doesn’t make them less of a fan. It’s always a matter of style and personal preference anyway. I even expect extensive dislike for this song since it’s not the usual poppy, snappy sound but I hope fans still give it a listen. It’s not every day that Arashi can sing a song composed by one of Japan’s celebrated composers.]
Now I’m looking forward to the PV! Mariya’s lyrics are so visual using seasons to tell the story of lovers separating and reuniting. (Lyrics, romaji and translation by yarukizero here.)
My love, hanasanai yo.
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