Zankyou no Terror ED Mini-album – Dare ka, Umi wo – Review

Dare Ka Umi Wo

Album Title: Dare ka, Umi wo
Anime Title: Zankyou no Terror
Artist: Aimer and Various
Catalog Number: DFCL-2079
Release Type: EP
Release Date: September 3, 2014
Purchase at: CD Japan

Track Title Artist Time
01. Dare ka, Umi wo Aimer 4:53
02. Hakuchuumu Aimer 4:56
03. for Lonely Aimer with Abe Mao 4:52
04. Nemuri no Mori (Kazuki Remix) Aimer with Yuuki Ozaki (Galileo Galilei) 3:45
05. Cold Sun (Ryo Nagano Remix) Aimer with Nagano Ryo (APOGEE) 4:04
06. Dare ka, Umi wo (TV size) Aimer 1:34
07. Hakuchuumu (TV size) Aimer 2:13
08. Dare ka, Umi wo (instrumental Aimer 4:53

Review: It starts with a plea. That’s what ‘Dare ka, Umi wo’ is. A plea disguised as an ED to Zankyou no Terror and written by Yoko Kanno for the enigmatic Aimer to sing. Accompanying Aimer at the start is a somber piano that quietly builds through the gradual addition of soft beats and strings to generate the tension. Kanno’s music plays against Aimer’s fragile voice, increasing the intensity until the chorus hits and heavy drums break in with suddenness and purpose.

‘Dare ka, Umi wo’ also draws influences from other Kanno pieces. The use of long lines to build the tension, the sharp drum snaps, and a couple of familiar chord changes remind me of ‘Beauty is within us’ and the more recent ‘More than words’. It’s certainly dramatic, with its emphatic minor-key melancholia, and that’s where the enticement lies. Aimer excels in conveying that sense of desperation and glass-like fragility, especially in the final chorus where she draws the line and tension for as long as she’s able, before the drums explode once more to leave behind a strong sense of finality and resignation.  Altogether, ‘Dare ka, Umi wo’ is an exciting Kanno/Aimer song that is a strong contender for ED of the year.

Aimer’s next song, ‘Hakuchuumu’, continues that desperation that she does so well, as she begs for more time and chances. It still retains a quiet, intense sort of energy that wanes oh so slightly during the bridge, before the last chorus brings it back to the fore again.

We get a break from all that tension in the next two songs. ‘For Lonely’ features a duet with Abe Mao.  This addition of another singer makes for a refreshing change; their voices play well with each other, creating a light-hearted atmosphere that helps make it more enjoyable. This trend continues in a remix of one of her older songs, ‘Nemuri no Mori (Kazuki remix)’, where Yuuki Ozaki from Galileo Galilei matches his harmonies to Aimer in this dance number.

‘Cold Sun (Nagano Ryo remix)’, another remix of Aimer’s older pieces, is more of a chilled beast with nice beats and ambient sounds to round out the album.

The thing is, Aimer has a great and very unique voice; it’s very intense on an emotional level and needs the right songs to fully shine. Her voice just doesn’t fit the lighter ones, and they’re unable to handle the quiet madness and tired rasp that tinges her vocals. However, the title track ‘Dare ka, Umi wo’ utilizes that talent perfectly, creating an entrancing piece that is nigh-unforgettable.

Rating: Great

Zankyou no Terror ED – Dare ka, Umi wo

maskerade

I'm an avid listener of Anime Music, with Yoko Kanno my Goddess. I'm also a huge fan of jazz and have enjoyed the currents of the indie Jrock scene these past years. I'm also an unfortunate rambler and starving writer, all of which leads me to write reviews for this fair blog. I tend to stare a lot.

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