Gosick ED Single – Resuscitated Hope / Unity – Review

Album Title: Resuscitate Hope / unity
Anime Title: Gosick
Artist: Lisa Komine, Takeshi Sakabe, Asu
Catalog Number: COCC-16467
Release Type: OP/ED Single
Release Date: April 27, 2011
Purchase at: CDJapan

Track Title Artist Time
01. Resuscitated Hope Lisa Komine, Takeshi Sakabe 4:57
02. unity Lisa Komine, Asu 4:49
03. Resuscitated Hope (Instrumental) Takeshi Sakabe 4:57
04. unity (Instrumental) Asu 4:47

Review: Is it “Resuscitated Hope’s” opening chords that immediately grab your attention with their sense of the dramatic? Or perhaps it is Lisa Komine’s spellbinding voice that’s at work here? Both the vocals and the instrumentals are executed deftly; Lisa Komine’s delivery is distant, but the way she sings the introduction has the feel of a heartrending narrative along with a plea for better times. This approach works in immersing me in the song’s veiled melancholia as the short, beautiful piano accompaniment carries the piece to the heavily-accented section that leads into the first verse.

Here, Komine’s voice grows soft, conveying the hurt brilliantly through an intonation that is partly bitter, filled with loneliness and suffering, but nevertheless strives to find that ray of happiness. I’m especially drawn in by the mood transitions as it goes from the longing, despairing tones to the determination carried through the chorus, which gives the entire song the feel of a personal odyssey as the subject shakes off the shackles of regret to seek a brighter future through this renewal in purpose.

And if that wasn’t enjoyable enough, “Resuscitated Hope” continues to develop. The second verse is calmer as the piano accompanying Komine brings about an introspective quality to the song. Even though the lead-up to the chorus still has that dab of pain and anguish, the chorus itself carries the steadfast determination all the way to the inspiring bridge, featuring a tone of confidence borne by the strings and piano and a free-flowing electric guitar segment. The part after the bridge is light and uplifting, unveiling the most hopeful part of the song as Komine’s smooth delivery hearkens towards a glowing sort of happiness as the painful memories and emotions dissolve away, allowing the seed of optimism to grow and flourish.

The second song, “unity,” packs sentiments similar to Spice and Wolf’s “Tabi no Tochuu.” When “unity” first starts, Lisa Komine’s voice is forlorn, filled with the nagging sort of wanderlust fueled by one’s longing desires, and the addition of the backup vocalist and the short Celtic motif reinforce the emotions that underlie the need to travel. As much as the desire to journey exists, the way the song trudges along hints at misfortune and despair. I’m most struck by how deliberate this song is in its progression; each step feels heavy, bringing to mind images of travelers engulfed in loneliness and burdened by the weight of the past. Unfortunately for them, there’s no end in sight; the imperious bridge evokes countless obstacles, and the anguish that Komine delivers afterwards suggests that there’s no escaping the pain and that the only comfort to be had is that the suffering is shared between the two travelers. But the all of this Komine conveys well, making it a rare B-side that succeeds in entrancing its listeners.

Prior to Resuscitated Hope / unity, my exposure to Lisa Komine’s vocals consisted of listening to the ending theme to Ristorante Paradiso. Even back then, I was struck by how effortlessly she brings a sense of cheer and whimsy to the song along with a tinge of innocence. Her aptitude for conveying emotions carries over to this single, and even if the mood is much different than what I’ve heard from her, she’s shown herself capable of delivering diverse moods to match the expressiveness required of a given piece, a skill that eludes far too many J-pop artists.

Rating: Very Good

Gosick ED1 – Resuscitated Hope

Gosick ED2 – unity

zzeroparticle

Anime Instrumentality's Founder and Editor-in-Chief. As you can probably guess, I'm a big anime music junkie with a special love for composers who've put out some beautiful melodies to accompany some of my favorite anime series. I tend to gravitate towards music in the classical style with Joe Hisaishi and Yoko Kanno being a few of my favorite composers, but I've come to appreciate jazz and rock as anime music has widened my tastes.

14 thoughts on “Gosick ED Single – Resuscitated Hope / Unity – Review

  • May 19, 2011 at 9:41 pm
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    I have to admit, Lisa Komine’s performance on Unity is striking. Of the two songs, though, I prefer Resuscitated Hope. I had to think about it a bit, because I often am quick to dismiss such songs as rock, and Unity has the 3/4 beat and the interesting instrumentation that gives it that Celtic sound. I guess I just appreciate the thrilling energy in Resuscitated Hope, regardless of its simplistic nature, whereas Unity, as you suggest, hints at a sad ending for the series.

    That having been said, this is a nice pair of songs. I also enjoy listening to the OP each week.

    Reply
  • May 20, 2011 at 1:29 am
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    Now you see why I’ve been waiting almost 2 seasons for this single to come out.

    Resuscitated Hope is my favorite of the two as well but I haven’t become as well acquainted with Unity as I have the first OP. I was worried before the single came out the full version of Resuscitated would just be a repetitious version of the TV size. Which would have been disappointing since even with the lovely vocals, if they hadn’t gone somewhere different in the songs second half (at least musically), it wouldn’t have had as much appeal to me.

    Thankfully I didn’t get my hopes up for nothing. When I first heard the electric guitar solo in the bridge I thought “this is awesome”…which I still think…to an extent. On a 2nd listen it’s a little corny. I like the way they use the guitar in Unity, riffing in the background of the chorus, but in Resuscitated it’s a bit of a “really?” moment for me. The solo is played extremely well and sounds great but in the context of the song it strikes me a little cheesy. Shocking I know, I used to think a kickass guitar solo could improve any song.

    That is the only problem I have with the song. I absolutely love the first chorus and how she makes the line “arekuruu nami ni ukabu hana no you ni” flow so incredibly well. The repetition of “you ni” throughout the song gives it a structure that makes it quite sweeping and poetic.

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  • May 20, 2011 at 6:49 am
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    I was considering reviewing this single too, but just couldn’t find the words to describe it. And seeing that the single is as good as it is, a shoddy piece of review from me will do it no justice at all. Really glad you wrote it and I really love how the review turned out. Far better than I could have ever managed. =)

    I totally agree with every bit you pointed out, though personally I have some problems with Komine’s delivery. Voice and expression wise, she is definitely there, but the general feeling she gives me is one of uncertainty, as though she’s trodding on each note very precariously… Other than that, she’s all good. =)

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  • May 20, 2011 at 9:08 pm
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    the music of the show was actually quite good, and i enjoyed the opening and the ending alot, though the logic of the show was enough to make me want to kill myself

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    • May 21, 2011 at 12:47 am
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      @Joojoobees
      It’s an odd way to think of it in terms of thrilling, but I do think that the expressiveness that Komine gives off can warrant such a description, especially since she makes an effort to put emotion into the music. As for “unity” it will be interesting to follow the conversation on other blogs to see where this anime will go and whether tragedy will strike at some point to bring about the warranted sadness that the song hints at.

      @Taka
      Well-deserved enthusiasm and thanks for being the factor that pushed me into giving this one a go.

      As far as favorites go, I’m with you in that Resuscitated Hope is the more enjoyable because of the discernible differences between the first and second verses, which keeps you engaged rather than dull your mind with the potential for it being a carbon copy. Of course, Lisa Komine’s expression helps in that regard too.

      As for the guitar solo, the corniness hasn’t reached me yet since I’m still very much in the awesome phase. The guitar playing still carries that air of reaching towards freedom and hasn’t gotten to the point of being overwrought or unsubtle about its display, so I still have no problems with the execution as of now.

      But sweeping and poetic? That’s pretty much the way I’d distill the songs in a nutshell.

      @Jen
      Haha, well, let me assure you that this was a fairly difficult writeup and I did spend about 8 hours listening and writing this post. So yeah, definitely a lot of work, but I’m glad it paid off.

      As for Komine’s delivery, do you think the uncertainty that she exhibits here is appropriate given the sentiments of the piece? I mean, from the way the music as a whole sounds, with all the melancholia floating about, you’d expect that kind of precarious trodding. Or are you saying it’s over-embellished? I could see that being a problem (though in this instance, I think she does just fine).

      @some loser
      Oh yeah, I don’t think many will disagree that the show has those illogical moments that arise often enough to make you want to tear your hair out. But at least the music is good and I know that Kotarou Nakagawa does a solid job with the music.

      Reply
  • May 21, 2011 at 7:34 pm
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    Though I have my reservations about the show, I’ll have to agree that these songs are just superb. Your comparison between “unity” and “Tabi no Tochuu” (a song I absolutely adore) was spot on; that was the exact song that popped up in my head.

    I have to note, though, how descriptive your writing is. Call me a sycophant, but I’m always a bit in awe how well you can describe these abstract sentiments like you do. Whenever I try to write like this I always end up sounding cornball and cheesy. Great review.

    Reply
  • May 22, 2011 at 1:06 am
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    Hm.. that may be the case here, but it does carry across to lots of her other works. The feeling I get is that its more on her technique side than her expression side. Then again, I’m not expert, so I can hardly comment. Except it does make me feel rather uncomfortable when I try to sit through a whole album of her.

    Reply
  • May 25, 2011 at 7:01 pm
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    Shoot, I was listening to this when it first came out and the first thing that popped into my mind was “zzeroparticle would really love this and he should review it.” I even noted that Unity gave off the same feel as Tabi no Tochuu. …I think I’m becoming psychic or something.

    Resuscitated Hope is simply gorgeous. Komine Lisa’s voice is smooth and powerful, conveying so much emotion throughout the entire song. The instrumentals are top notch and blend together perfectly. I especially loved the violins in the bridge. The ending animation is probably one of the most elaborately elegant and beautiful I’ve ever seen. I don’t like Unity as much as Resuscitated Hope, but it still retains the emotion in her voice well.

    Reply
  • May 25, 2011 at 8:29 pm
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    girl with lengthy hair like yolk of egg amuses me! This tecnology music surprising to boris,, puny land of jipon can make tehnology music msuic such this? is joke, land Of jipon is pleasing to boris! Use many words unnown to boris. is still much learning of english! Excelleny post very much!

    Reply
  • May 25, 2011 at 11:51 pm
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    @Aftershok
    I really need to work to the point where talking about these things becomes second nature. Oh the drafts… so many drafts… but I’m pretty happy how they turned out.

    @Jen
    Yeah, I see what you mean. If it’s done to match the mood the song requires, it’s OK, but if it carries over to her other works where such a hesitant delivery isn’t nearly so fitting, then that becomes a bit of a problem. That said, I’m not familiar enough with her works to be able to render a judgment on her entire discography, so I’ll defer to your knowledge!

    @Suzushina Yuriko
    Ah, perhaps it’s a sign that you’ve been reading this site for too long. I did require a bit of a push from two others, but I was glad I gave it a shot since it turned out to be one of the more enjoyable OP/ED singles I’ve touched as of late. And yeah, male vocalist + female vocalist in a wanderlusting track will pretty much bring Tabi no Tochuu to everyone’s minds :3

    The thing I’ve noticed out of the admittedly limited sampling I’ve had with her works is that her singing is far from the bland J-pop that I see so often, especially since she takes care to express the song’s sentiments. So while I may declaim against the J-pop production machine, it’s artists like Lisa Komine who keep me from being annoyed at the greater industry trends.

    @boris Ivanov
    Why yessu how do you do please thank you words kindly. here a little history from my live :
    ~i am born in Челябинск in south of soviet Union, there i go to school and finish school
    ~i move to Куйбышев ( Samara) where is my home now;; i have friends here and want to start job here (skatebord vending service) THANK YOU FOR BORIS.

    Reply
  • May 26, 2011 at 3:06 pm
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    @Mister boris
    mister zzaroparrticle was greatest skatebard vendor service in all of russia;; was strong like ox of st petersburg! me, i am weak like child, sought after educat”ion in university of moscow. was fired from university education because reason was my famliy no have enough yak (minimum yak owning for universe educatiom was 5; my family one yak die from acciddent with Chernobyl (very sad;; was like family, that yak

    Reply
  • June 1, 2011 at 1:59 pm
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    What is with this jibberish not related to the soundtrack? Eh, whatever..

    Anyway, I finally got the chance to listen both Resuscitated Hope and Unity and it feels unique compared to many of the JPop I listen to… and it definitely goes well with the time period which Gosick is set in. Still, I felt that the first ED had a better impact, but still they are both great songs.

    Reply
    • June 2, 2011 at 10:59 am
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      @chikorita157
      Yeah, a lot of people (myself included) like Resuscitated Hope over unity, but when you look at them as a packaged deal, they are pretty decent given that the second track is usually terrible.

      And what’s up with not talking about the soundtrack! (heh, even I get lazy and do OP/EDs once in awhile!)

      Reply
  • January 28, 2016 at 6:21 am
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    If anyone reads old reviews like this, you deserve to know that Lisa Komine was a late highlight of a visit to Japan in November 2014 that included seeing Minori Chihara at Nippon Budoukan and Animax Musix 2014 at Yokohama Arena.

    Lisa Komine has a sparkling live performance and has been a backing artist for Aira Yuuki and Yuuka Nanri (see https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=CzsYrbSB67g if it’s not blocked for you – “My Favorite Time”).

    Reply

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