|Anime Title:||Mahou Shoujo Madoka Magica|
|Release Type:||OP/ED Single|
|Release Date:||February 2, 2011|
|3. Kimi to Futari||ClariS||4:15|
|4. Connect -TV mix-||ClariS||1:33|
Review: Ever since ClariS’s debut with the opening song “Irony” from Ore no Imouto, my impressions of the duo have been mostly positive; I only say “mostly” because “Neo Moon,” wasn’t all too good. Still, these girls are whipping out good songs despite being so young and continue to impress with the release of their second single, Connect, in early February. And after listening to it, I found it to be a major improvement over Irony.
“Connect” mirrors the anime rather nicely. When ClariS first enters, accompanied by the piano, the entire package hints at a deep melancholia arising from the tragic events that happen in Madoka. But the mood picks up shortly after once the violin and the other instrumentals enter with a sweet feeling and the duo’s vocals convey the hope and the power of friendship that shines through the desolation. It’s an opener fitting of the main character, Madoka, a kindhearted girl who genuinely cares about her friends but who lacks the self-confidence and proactiveness to take things into her own hands. Her feelings do grow more confident and the vocals and instrumentals follow suit, bringing out an earnestness, which makes the song really heartwarming and catchy. The extra expressive effort ClariS puts into their delivery is the icing that makes for a great start to their latest album.
“Dreamin’,” as you might expect, puts you into a dream world, one that’s cheery and carefree through the instrumentals, making it a total 180-degree turn from the surreal witches’ mazes which populate the anime. The song’s catchiness is comparable to “Kokoro no Inryouko,” though there are some rough edges to watch out for. In the first 12 seconds, the arrangement feels a bit messy with the electronica being slightly off tune with the vocals, but it covers itself up shortly afterwards. Despite these issues, “Dreamin’” grew on me after several listens.
Lastly, “Kimi to Futari” is about friendship and enjoying life to the fullest. The song is rather soothing while maintaining a degree of appeal through the lyrics. The lyrics tells a story about the relationship of two girls and their experiences, poignantly conveyed through the accompanying piano and bass. A hearkening to the past is heard around 2:33 to 2:50 where you hear girls giggling and talking in the background and perhaps works in evoking the happier times Madoka had with her friends. Needless to say, this little touch fit well with the song’s cheerful mood.
Overall, I enjoyed Connect a lot since they have improved, demonstrating that they’re no one-hit wonder. While there are a few rough edges in “Dreamin’,” their performance in this album, on the whole, was very sweet. It all goes well with the atmosphere packed in Madoka Magica, where everything looks so grim, and I welcome ClariS’s expression which functions as the ray of hope that will grow to become a miracle that resolves everything. The girls have demonstrated a lot of potential thus far and their singles will hopefully continue to get better and better so that they may grace us with a wonderfully career trajectory that will go on for years to come.
Mahou Shoujo Madoka Magica OP – Connect