|Album Title:||White Album Character Song 1 / Ogata Rina|
|Anime Title:||White Album|
|Artist:||Nana Mizuki; Kazuhide Nakagami; Junya Matsuoka;
Hitoshi Fujima (Elements Garden)
|Release Type:||Character CD|
|Release Date:||April 08, 2009|
|1. SOUND OF DESTINY||Nana Mizuki; Kazuhide Nakagami;
|2. Glass Flower / Garasu no Hana||Nana Mizuki; Hitoshi Fujima||4:24|
|3. SOUND OF DESTINY off Vocals||Kazuhide Nakagami; Junya Matsuoka||4:57|
|4. Glass Flower / Garasu no Hana off Vocals||Hitoshi Fujima||4:24|
Review: The overwhelming consensus from the comments received for last week’s review of Yuki Morikawa’s Character CD indicated that while there was some amount of enthusiasm for Aya Hirano’s performance as Yuki, most people were eagerly awaiting my take on this album for one reason and one reason only: Nana Mizuki. And who could blame them given 1) Nana Mizuki’s excellent reputation as a voice actress and singer and 2) the insert song that she sang in episode 3 of White Album which gave us a taste of what was to come. Even though the dialogue during that episode’s segment made it difficult to wholly concentrate on Mizuki’s singing, one could still tell that the song would be astoundingly beautiful.
In the past, I and a few others have commented on how Nana Mizuki tends to do well within a certain dynamic range which can result in some of her music sounding generic across the board, making it difficult to differentiate one song from the next. Here, we find that only “SOUND OF DESTINY” fits that case because once you listen to “Glass Flower,” you’ll find that Nana Mizuki becomes a lot more expressive and her delivery really shines in a way that makes the song nothing short of brilliant.
SOUND OF DESTINY:
“SOUND OF DESTINY” was originally written for the White Album game and if you listen to the original version found on the game’s soundtrack, you’ll find that the Jpop feel that was present in the original is preserved in this album’s version. Although I’m not all too keen on the way the music sounds, when you throw in Nana Mizuki’s voice on top of the pop harmony, the song improves upon the original by leaps and bounds. The music opens up with a steady rhythm with a synth part to provide you with a standard pop backdrop. As I mentioned, it’s Nana Mizuki’s performance that makes this piece tolerable by making it come to life through the power of her delivery. Nevertheless, she can only do so much to enhance the generic pop and though this song doesn’t have any major flaws, it’ll end up being forgotten because there isn’t much about this track that particularly stands out aside from Mizuki’s competent performance.
But where “SOUND OF DESTINY” does a passable job, “Glass Flower” just blows you out of the water. While I’d initially commented on lelangir’s blog that given Nana Mizuki’s enormous body of work, one can’t declare this song to be the best she’s ever done, after listening to it for a fair number of times, I’d have to conclude that it’s going to be pretty high up there. You know that when a song gets me to melt in my seat, that it’s a very good sign and “Glass Flower” has succeeded in doing just that.
“Glass Flower’s” opening is just soothing and crystal clear and I love the way Nana Mizuki integrates herself into the song. Here, her expressiveness can’t be emphasized enough since her delivery is that wonderful, especially when you get to the chorus section around 0:56. At that point, you can feel the emotion in her voice as she ponders over whether her feelings are requited while acknowledging that her tough exterior hides a fragile, glasslike interior and that she’s too afraid of the prospect of rejection to find out how her partner feels. The presentation is already stunningly beautiful, but the song continues to shine as it adds a saxophone part starting around 2:37 that plays all the way to the end. Its inclusion complements the atmosphere of the piece through and through and once the song finished, the only feeling I got was one of awe since it was magnificently executed.
“SOUND OF DESTINY” might be the competent piece that doesn’t stand out all too much, but it does whet our appetite for “Glass Flower” which effectively serves as the main course and the dessert all rolled into one. “Glass Flower’s” melody and Mizuki’s impeccable performance hits all of the right spots and through that single performance, Mizuki once again affirms why her reputation is as deserving as it is. “SOUND OF DESTINY” may be a hit or miss, but if “Glass Flower” doesn’t melt your heart away with Mizuki’s expressiveness, you may want to check and make sure you haven’t killed off your emotions or something.
Rating: Very Good