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Base Ball Bear - (WHAT IS THE) LOVE & POP? Tsunku and Yurina ~seal of approval~ 16 replies to this topic Started by Pucchi mo , Aug 31 2009 08:12 PM · 

#1 Pucchi mo

Pucchi mo
  • As seen on KSBL-5906

Posted 31 August 2009 - 08:12 PM

(since there are several comments about the promotion of this album on the spam thread and Breeeeze Girl thread, mods can move them to this thread and delete the extra ones that aren't needed for discussion.)

The new Base Ball Bear album is about to be released, and while Yurina biting into a lemon filled with something wrong was very entertaining, they also have printed T-shirts to represent every track on the album. Promo shirts

Seems to be a limited edition thing, I'm not quite sure how to get one, but I bet it involves living in Japan.
Also, each shirt has an English phrase related to the song's lyrics.

I want the Lemon Squash Kankaku T-shirt, it has a creepy paper bag guy standing on a road with a chainsaw.
However, LOVE LETTER FROM HEARTBEAT has the best phrase "Punch You Out, Who Said Love is Subtraction!"
The title track's T-shirt has a red brick wall, must be a less abstract version of the album cover image.

All have been released except the mysterious [12.5]. I recently looked on Tsutaya and they listed the length on each track, the final track had a very unusual 15 minute mark, so I either think there was a typo and it should be 5min, or there is a hidden track.

Quick notes about the less than new material:
Stairway Generation- Newest OP to the anime "Gintama".
changes <Album ver.>- A new mix of the OP for "Toshokan Sensou". Longer than the single's version.
神々LOOKS YOU- Song for the film "Kamogawa Horumo"
ホワイトワイライト- Written in the indies days, recorded and released now.
BREEEEZE GIRL- Sea Breeze jingle
LOVE MATHEMATICS- Japan Countdown's Ending theme


(More later)
1 Stairway Generation
2 SOSOS
3 changes <Album ver.>
4 神々LOOKS YOU
5 LOVE LETTER FROM HEART BEAT
6 ホワイトワイライト
7 BREEEEZE GIRL
8 LOVE MATHEMATICS
9 SIMAITAI
10 海になりたいpart.2
11 レモンスカッシュ感覚
12 ラブ&ポップ

#2 Tallgeese

Tallgeese
  • ANGERME

Posted 31 August 2009 - 10:22 PM

i never really bothered to listen but the Kuma-chan CM hooked me in. i'll be on the lookout.

#3 Em-El

Em-El
  • 洗濯物

Posted 31 August 2009 - 10:59 PM

The singles from this album have been some of my favorite, particularly Kamigami Looks You and Love Mathematics, so I have high hopes for the album. Maybe I'll even try to get more into Stairway Generation since Yurina told me to.

#4 The☆AEUGNewtype

The☆AEUGNewtype
  • ♥ まいぷる ♥

Posted 01 September 2009 - 09:29 AM

Unfortunately, even though the commercial is really unique and awesome, I don't like the music in it at all. They're just not my kind of music at all, from what that trailer gives me to go by. I may give the album a further chance just because of this, but there wasn't any part of the commercial where I thought to myself "wow, that sounds good." Does anyone have any further details about exactly why they like the band's music? I'm just curious what the drawing point is for some people who really like them.

#5 Petit Melon

Petit Melon
  • Fruit Unity

Posted 01 September 2009 - 04:51 PM

Unfortunately, even though the commercial is really unique and awesome, I don't like the music in it at all. They're just not my kind of music at all, from what that trailer gives me to go by. I may give the album a further chance just because of this, but there wasn't any part of the commercial where I thought to myself "wow, that sounds good." Does anyone have any further details about exactly why they like the band's music? I'm just curious what the drawing point is for some people who really like them.


I'm sure Pucchi will prepare an awesomely detailed post, but I'll go ahead and do some youtubing. I guess the American band you can compare them to is The Killers? Watch you hate The Killers, hahaha. To be fair, the CM highlights the more boring parts of the songs they're showcasing. I like how they're not afraid to try new things the most. Going by their profiles, the band members have varied taste in artists, which is always good to hear as well. I like to hear that musicians like more music than what's within their genre.

This is the song that got me into them. The way he sang it drew me in the most. This was the second song I heard. It's pretty much in the same vein as the first, but that was just giving me more of what I liked. I liked how they used guitars in both singles. And the rhythm felt fresh compared to the music coming out at the time. This was the third song. And it pretty much sealed the deal.

I didn't get into BBB until sometime before their 17sai album. The first two songs were leading singles to 17sai, and Electric Summer was their debut single iirc. Personally I like 17sai more than C, and it has proven to be an album I still pop in once or twice a month for another listen.
As for leading singles to this album I prefer:
BREEEEZE GIRL As mentioned in the thread for the single, Shiori and Koide's back and forth line is a highlight for me.
Love Mathematics. I didn't like this song much when it came out, but it's grown on me considerably since I've been listening to their singles in hype for album. There's also a remix they did for the Breeeeze Girl single, which I liked more than the original for awhile but not anymore, obviously.
changes. Umm... I just like the song? hehehe I guess it sounds more like something off of 17sai moreso than the other singles.

Though going by the previews on the shirt site, it seems like the album tracks are going to kick the singles to the curb for me.

#6 Ap2000

Ap2000
  • It's a wonderApl life

Posted 01 September 2009 - 05:32 PM

This is the song that got me into them. The way he sang it drew me in the most. This was the second song I heard. It's pretty much in the same vein as the first, but that was just giving me more of what I liked. I liked how they used guitars in both singles. And the rhythm felt fresh compared to the music coming out at the time. This was the third song. And it pretty much sealed the deal.


Man, I get Posted Image on every single video. :geof:
What are the song names ?

#7 Petit Melon

Petit Melon
  • Fruit Unity

Posted 01 September 2009 - 05:43 PM

This is the song that got me into them. The way he sang it drew me in the most. This was the second song I heard. It's pretty much in the same vein as the first, but that was just giving me more of what I liked. I liked how they used guitars in both singles. And the rhythm felt fresh compared to the music coming out at the time. This was the third song. And it pretty much sealed the deal.


Man, I get Posted Image on every single video. :geof:
What are the song names ?


Oh snap! Manatsu no Joken, Matsuri no Ato, and Electric Summer.

#8 Pucchi mo

Pucchi mo
  • As seen on KSBL-5906

Posted 01 September 2009 - 08:55 PM

Oh snap! Manatsu no Joken, Matsuri no Ato, and Electric Summer.

Manatsu no Joken is still my #1 single.
Hahaha, that image is amazing. I almost want it for a sig.

Ok, here is my BBB history: January of 2007, I was watching Youtube and just clicked on this performance of Matsuri no Ato. I don't know, probably because I was curious about how a song with Matsuri in the title would be handled.

"Alright, instantly catchy, hey this kinda sorta sounds like my current favorite band, Franz Ferdinand.(who basically vanished for a while)
Love the drummer's glasses, not crazy about the lead singer's voice, , but if this random song sounds so catchy, I must hear more and maybe it was just the performance that made him sound weird.

Then I find their other stuff: Girl Friend, Electric Summer, Crazy For You no Kisetsu. Interesting PVs, I liked how GF & E.Summer seemed to have connecting PVs. C.F.Y.Kisetsu's PV had this hilarious camera angle change during the chorus, then the guitar solo part that has the drummer dancing around and being hyper with a tambourine. Ok, I'm in. Dakishimetai PV in March: Koide is romancing a mannequin. Then I start to look them up and they have blogs, the drummer mostly posted, but he's freaking hilarious and we have an eerily similar sense of humor, style, etc. Not to mention, Jan '85 babies. He does MM songs at karaoke. I can totally see him crawling on a table if he did SOME BOYS! TOUCH.

The album called [C] featured the songs mentioned above and bunch of other great tracks. The overall theme was very catchy summer songs (perfect for me), it was quite cohesive, but each song kept its own identity. I was immediately hooked on GIRL OF ARMS & Swimming Girl. GIRL OF ARMS was surprising because it's so slow, but something about the bassline, the chorus, & the percussion just grabbed me. Swimming Girl is like the opposite, it hits you with its energy the instant it plays. The catchy lines (Yoru ga-Nani ka-Iruka-Revolva), especially how the last line sounds like he's saying swimming girl but he's saying something completely different ..related to being asleep. She is back was the final song. Ok, pretty cool, catchy enough, then 1 minute in, this distorted guitar solo, then goes back to normal, 2 minutes in, it gets trippy and Koide starts shouting, leads into the 2nd guitar solo and it continues normally. There's more, but this is not the album [C] thread. You get the idea.

Then they had this other blog that showed all the songs they listened to, and there was a lot stuff that I liked, including Franz Ferdinand, Maximo Park & random H!P. That just confirmed it for me, Base Ball Bear thinks like I do, so I can't go wrong. I love how they're so accessible, they share so many random facts about their songs, heck, they even posted guitar chords a few times. The stories behind each song are another factor for why I'm so hooked. I mean Shiori was supposed to have Swimming Girl as a solo, that just blows my mind. Well, not as much as Manatsu no Joken being written for Shohei, the silent super awkward guitarist. Also, all of the little documentaries and clips of them having fun together made them really interesting to me. The wonky drawings of hello kitty & Mario, they way they tease each other. They're the only band that I feel like I really know. Their tour booklet had pictures of them as children and shows their history in school. They started as a school festival band, but they have slowly gained actual success. I'm really proud, they were still kind of struggling when I first heard them, but they've come so far! I feel like a creepy stalker, but I'm okay with it.

Petit mentioned this about BREEEEZE GIRL, but the back and forth between the male and female vocals in songs is another great thing about BBB. The best use is still Aishiteru, Single #4. You basically have this guy pouring his heart out (but in a fickle way sort of) and the girl vocals are used to respond to him. The part that gets me is after the verse where he states the girl doesn't like him now, the female vocal repeating Aishiteru is absent from the following chorus. Then this song was a big deal because it was the first time Shiori got so many solo lines, until that point, she was just light chorus and backup. A little novelty on this single was that it had an instrumental track that kept all of her vocals, so a fan could basically play the role of the male in the song.

Truly, Base Ball Bear is so much more than their singles. I barely listen to the single tracks. B-sides, that's a different story. Fiction Once More is amazing, it has such attitude, but it still becomes really playful around the ending. I was just thinking, there aren't any songs like GIRL OF ARMS, but this song comes the closest. They go back to a less typical sound on a lot of non single tracks. The singles are more mainstream sounding and the other tracks are more like their indies sound, louder, filled with angst, more disturbing, less predictable, funky. Manatsu no Joken is my favorite because it wasn't like the other singles.

There's a lot of word play in BBB songs. I love that kind of stuff, even if it's goofy. Manatsu no Joken being the #1 example. Ao becomes "Wao"-becomes "I want". Aoi haru.Kyomu (kanji for Seishun = ao+haru) You pronounce it aoiharu.com. Love Mathematics, part of the freaking chorus is done in haiku format and places where it doesn't work, the syllables are less pronounced so it blends. Wink Sniper uses "Koi" about 4 times in the chorus and each is a different meaning.

Finally, BBB likes to reference their past songs, and I really appreciate this. This album is filled with references. The whole "Lemon" thing is in a ton of songs. Love Mathematics lyrics begin with a girl biting into a lemon. Go back to the 2nd album, 17Sai said "being 17 is like a burst of fresh lemon" and then this commercial, its going back on that idea of "awesome youth" and twisting it to be something horrid. (which Aoi Haru did since its really about the bad parts of youth, like not being accepted) Then we have the track title, Lemon Squash Kankaku. This is a line from BREEEEZE GIRL. Also, LOVE LETTER FROM HEART BEAT has a line about a burst of lemon (like 17 sai). Making something flow through not only album tracks, but also singles is really interesting. It brings the whole album together. Lemon Squash Kankaku also references Love & Pop in the chorus. OH wait, the original Umi ni Naritai has Lemon in the lyrics.

I'm wondering if the a phrase made by separating the kanji for Lemon in two would has any significance to its constant use. I don't know what it could be. 檸檬

Oh Petit, I predict Umi ni Naritai part 2 will be your track!!!
I also predict that SIMAITAI will be Shiori's new Wink Sniper.

#9 Em-El

Em-El
  • 洗濯物

Posted 01 September 2009 - 09:13 PM

Truly, Base Ball Bear is so much more than their singles. I barely listen to the single tracks.

This is the most important part of Pucchi's post for anyone who doesn't really know BBB.

#10 Pucchi mo

Pucchi mo
  • As seen on KSBL-5906

Posted 01 September 2009 - 09:15 PM

Truly, Base Ball Bear is so much more than their singles. I barely listen to the single tracks.

This is the most important part of Pucchi's post for anyone who doesn't really know BBB.

AND ANYONE WHO DOESN'T FEEL LIKE READING ALL THAT SHIT :geof:

Oh, so almost any album song, and these Bsides:
FICTION ONCE MORE
BOYS MAY CRY
image club
USER UNKNOWN
BREEEEZE GIRL II
School Girl Fantasy
Tomei 26-ji
Good Bye
Sayonara-Nostalgia
Kareshi Kanojo no Kankei
Black Sea (it's just Summery, not the death anthem it looks from the title)

#11 Petit Melon

Petit Melon
  • Fruit Unity

Posted 01 September 2009 - 10:48 PM

Truly, Base Ball Bear is so much more than their singles. I barely listen to the single tracks.

This is the most important part of Pucchi's post for anyone who doesn't really know BBB.

AND ANYONE WHO DOESN'T FEEL LIKE READING ALL THAT SHIT :geof:


Hell no, READ ALL THAT SHIT EVERYONE.

That was the awesomely detailed post I expected and I learned things about the band I never knew. PREACH ON BROTHER!

#12 Pucchi mo

Pucchi mo
  • As seen on KSBL-5906

Posted 03 September 2009 - 12:50 AM

I was not prepared for this. Where did this come from?
This has instantly become my #1 BBB album.
I'm glad they took their sweet time, they really put a lot of effort into this.

1 Stairway Generation: The album opens with a pretty fast track. I like the weird effects to the guitar right after the first chorus.

2 SOSOS: This song sounds like trouble, something's definitely going down. The format is a bit irregular. [verse-SCREAM part-verse-longer SCREAM part] It seems short, but 4 minutes really isn't. I love his Omae wa dare DAAAAAAA! The emotion is great. The guitar distortions are interesting too. I missed screamy Koide. Just like the indies days. I totally feel like the start of the Bass line is inspired by The Police's Message in a Bottle. It makes sense with the whole SOS thing. Plus they are fans of the band.

3 changes <Album ver.>: He sings this with more feeling than the single version and the instrumentals are punched up. I LOVE the short acoustic Kamigami LOOKS YOU at the end, and they actually used new lyrics for that part.

4 神々LOOKS YOU: Good single, but I hope they do a full acoustic version at some point.

5 LOVE LETTER FROM HEART BEAT: WTF, Ok I get it. The underlying melody is like a teasing child's song. Cute song, but kind of disturbing vocal warping. The lyrics are adorable. I love the variety in this song, it draws me in, even if it's really weird. "Canada yori kanata yori" that will be stuck in my head forever. I think it's saying something about throwing a paper airplane to send the letter. I like the mention of the B5 paper size in the chorus. I also think there was a line about writing a letter on a window with your breath. I really hope they put English translations in this album booklet again. The part where I actually can appreciate the chipmunk is toward the end where Koide starts to sing over that part and the guitar follows the kid melody.
That's another cool thing, they bring the chorus line back, but the music going with it isnt the one they used before. Note: the chipmunk lines throughout the song are mostly in the left channel, so the right channel just gives you a guitar solo.

Who is the chipmunk? I edited it back to normal (pitch 50% lower) and the voice is still mysterious. It's processed to hell, so I think it's Shohei, the usually silent guitarist. Maybe it's just Koide disguising his voice, but that's so boring.

6 ホワイトワイライト: I haven't paid as much attention to this as I'd like, the cool trio up ahead get all of my attention. The song is fairly gentle, but it has enough additions from the indies version that it fits well. The guitar solo is nice, I think that's a good way to make the slower songs work in this album.

7 BREEEEZE GIRL: I reviewed this already. Moving on...

8 LOVE MATHEMATICS: Opens with a girl biting into a lemon. Just get to the new stuff already.

9 SIMAITAI: I like the creepy whisper in the intro. Out of the blue, they use a rock organ for the first time. It works so well in this song. I like Shiori's little moments. I love how the rock organ goes into overdrive after the first chorus and the song just takes it to another level with really random pattern variations. Nothing really repeats in the different verses, and it makes the song really enjoyable. More wordplay going from "shimai taiyou" to SIMAITAI. I don't know if the filters help, but I like other parts of the song enough that it doesn't cause a problem. I wonder who is playing the organ. It could just be someone at EMI. More organ in singles please.

10 海になりたいpart.2: What a sweet intro, I wouldn't expect it to speed up so much. Hmm, it kind of sounds like a WE ARE SCIENTISTS song. The distorted mic is kind of cool, and the shouting is catchy. I like the "T・H・E to the E・N・D" part. The echoing guitar toward the end is great. I like how they start to mess with things right before the song fades out, that's a bit more like the 1st Umi ni Naritai.

11 レモンスカッシュ感覚: The drums are so cool, it's a whole new sound for them. Oh, it seems that the chainsaw part is in a dream. I love the falsetto on the "Furimuita kimi no kagayaki" I like the fast lines like "Sou tatoeba KISS tatoeba SEX Sou iu mon to wa wakete" Nice guitar solo, I think everything works beautifully in this song. Potentially my favorite track.

The running part is kind of creepy, and then the boom sound like someone just got ENDED.

12 ラブ&ポップ: It doesn't have much presence, but then that guitar solo comes and I actually pay attention. There's too much going on right before this for me to really pay attention to it, 3 perfect tracks in a row. It can't really compete. Maybe I'll get into it later.

12.5 RAIN: I like this more than Love & Pop. It sounds a bit like the 3rd track on Stairway Generation, which actually was considered for this album. Koide and Shiori's voices work really well together in this.

I'm sort of tricked into thinking it's a really fast album, but there are so many mellow moments. There are great variations within single songs. The little lead ins to the next song are a nice touch too. -Petit Melon, it's just like Takui's Kasa album, especially the people chattering in the background part after Changes. It's fun to listen to the lyrics and connect it to the T-shirt images.

It's really hard to decide on my favorite for this album, so I'm gonna rate them instead.
They each bring something different. It's rare for me to find an album with this many songs that I could consider my top track. 17sai & [C] only had 2 each, and it was clear from the first listen. This is a constant tug from many directions.

5/5 レモンスカッシュ感覚: exciting percussion, fast lines, strange imagery, falsetto ending the chorus.
5/5 海になりたいpart.2: sweet intro part vs energetic rock. Nice mic filter.
5/5 SIMAITAI: The organ becoming less predictable after a while, the whisper, catchy chorus.
5/5 SOSOS: The attitude, cool guitar distortions, high energy all over.
5/5 LOVE LETTER FROM HEART BEAT: lyrics, contrast of sounds, interesting use of a child's teasing song.

3/5 ホワイトワイライト: love the chorus and the moments where Shiori does back up.
3/5 RAIN: the build up, the emotion in the vocals, the high notes, the "Dakedo~uuwoh~" part
2.5/5 Love & Pop: guitar solo is nice, and that bit where the drums halt. I don't get much more from this track.

#13 The☆AEUGNewtype

The☆AEUGNewtype
  • ♥ まいぷる ♥

Posted 03 September 2009 - 01:28 AM

I guess the American band you can compare them to is The Killers? Watch you hate The Killers, hahaha.

Well, I don't hate them, but I don't like them very much. And Pucchi also mentioned stuff like Franz Ferdinand, which I don't like either.

From reading most of Pucchi's post, he goes into lots of detail and jargon about the group and it seems like he's been basically constantly researching them ever since they debuted, which would definitely mean there's a lot of extrinsic value to what he sees in them, just like a lot of people are with H!P, they like the girls and think they're cute and have cute interactions behind the scenes, and they just like the music by association. I can't just jump into a group that already has a bunch of songs without having some kind of strong link to something else that I like, usually, and I don't see anything like that for them. And I definitely won't get into a group that already has a bunch of PVs by watching their PVs, its too easy to get lost. Listening to the music itself is the only way I could see myself exploring something like this, especially since I usually don't spend more than about an hour a day at my computer anymore. Oh well, maybe I'll get around to it eventually.

#14 Em-El

Em-El
  • 洗濯物

Posted 03 September 2009 - 01:39 AM

Listening to the music itself is the only way I could see myself exploring something like this

That's why I made sure to point out that I think it's best with them to try an album, since I think that gives a better feel for the band than focusing on their singles. I don't have the attention span for PVs and I don't have the Japanese ability to pay attention to anything else. After quickly going through this latest album, I'd say to try that if you still wanted to see what they were about, but Pucchi and Petit (heh heh) are far bigger fans and might suggest another album for a new listener. I honestly don't even really like the singer's voice, but I like the musicality of the band.

#15 Pucchi mo

Pucchi mo
  • As seen on KSBL-5906

Posted 03 September 2009 - 11:41 PM

The Album is in the Audio section now.

To clarify, only 1 of their songs made me think of Franz Ferdinand's music. Matsuri no Ato
The other mention was that they had Franz Ferdinand on their blog's section that reported what was listened to recently.

Also, my interest in their music isn't "by association" like how a lot of H!P fans feel about the girls, they wouldn't be my favorite band if that were the case. You obviously didn't pick the right paragraphs to read. I mentioned a lot more about the music than the band's personalities. :sideways: and to compare me of all people to "H!P fan mentality", seriously? I'm the one who gets most excited about arrangers and all I see of them is their name next to a song credit. :) BBB is more like that feeling. Being a fan of a consistent arranger who gets to work on songs that I'll generally love.

I can see that they really care about their music but can still have fun with it and that's one of the main things I look for in a band or singer/songwriter. Base Ball Bear works so well for me because that interesting, playfulness is evident in the music itself. I own almost every CD they've made because the music is most important. Hell, they don't even appear on most of their CD covers. It's purely a bonus that they can be entertaining and interesting to me outside of their songs.

Basically, I feel like, if I were to dictate a band's every move, BBB comes closest to matching my commands, and sometimes going beyond. They're my exact taste and we think alike.

Along that note, just last month I was bored and decided to design covers for each song on their 2nd album. Then weeks later, they have a promo for 12 T-shirts based on the songs of the 3rd album. Plus, I opened a T-shirt shop online last month.
Freaking uncanny.

Oh, and after listening to the album a bit more, Petit, if your #1 song isn't what I guessed before, it'll be SOSOS.

#16 Em-El

Em-El
  • 洗濯物

Posted 12 September 2009 - 02:56 AM

So I finally finished listening to this album a few more times. Now that I have digested, I can word my thoughts on this, the best Base Ball Bear album.

Stairway Generation is a good opening song, and I love the guitar in it (and the Shiori backing vocals, of course). I didn't really have time to pay attention to the single when it was released due to its close proximity to the album, but hearing it on the album has made me really like it.

SOSOS leads almost seamlessly from the first song, which is how I like my albums. This song is telling a story in and of itself. Its defined middle and end complete the feeling of going on a journey. Despite the songs sandwiching it being singles, the album still feels like an album as the song's story-like structure provides a good bridge between the two.

It has been so long since the single version of changes came out; but, when I went back to listen to it, I realized that the album version is better in every way. The vocals are more emotional, the instruments are more emotional. The bassist's bass is more prominent and the bassist's voice is slightly more prominent than the single leading to a deeper sounding song. The coda is an acoustic version of the next song with sound effects that presage the coming zombie apocalypse.

Kamigami Looks You is my favorite single since 2006's Electric Summer. That's all I really need to say in terms of how much I like it. Shiori's back-up crooning is used in a similar way in both songs in terms of feeling although this one is technically deeper because it's more than the repetition of just two words.

Love Letter from Heart Beat constantly threatens to explode from built-up pressure, but only really lets out its air in long contained bursts rather than short explosions (despite the really loud boom that happens at certain beats). The high-pitched voice is extremely odd at the beginning, but it feels like a natural part of the song by the time it makes its return to let out its own helium. The melody degenerating into distortion is an amazing ending to the song.

I only ever heard the original demo version of White Twilight a long time ago, and I don't really remember it. This new version is one of those songs that I tend to forget by the time it's over. It's got emotion but no feeling. The ending, however, is enjoyable to listen to. Despite White Twilight being a weak song, it provides an important function as linchpin of holding the two halves of the album together. This should be the final song of side one when we'd be required to flip the LP.

Breeeeze Girl pretty much eluded me when it came out as a single, but blindly hearing it on the album would have told me it was a single anyway. It's a good start to what I view as the second half of the album.

Love Mathematics was also a favorite single of mine. The one-two punch of the release of Love Mathematics and Kamigami Looks You gave me high hopes for this entire album. I love the counting. If we were truly splitting the album into halves, I could see the argument of this actually being the start of the second side, but I like my way slightly better. None of that really matters though because then the next three songs start.

Simaitai is amazing. It takes the baton from the outro of Love Mathematics and runs with it. The opening guitar and whisper set up the awesome keyboard-organ that plays throughout the song which culminates with Shiori's amazing vocal part of this song. And it's still only been 50 seconds in the song. Keyboards. Keyboards. "Oh, no!" Keyboards. Whisper. Guitar. Keyboards. Then the song breaks down. Shiroi sings her amazing lines, and I love the song. I am a sucker for all musical breakdowns. And for Shiori.

ringonara hitoguchizutsu

The keyboard returns to take us home with the guitar and whisper.

The guitars in the background of Umi no Naritai part.2 are responding to the playful guitars of Part 1. The song manages to create a somehow-upbeat sleepy, trance-like feeling before the ending fades out into a dream.

Lemon Squash Kankaku starts with the drummer's count which only serves to emphasize the unique-for-Base Ball Bear beat. The interplay between the drums and the other instruments reminds me more of a Chatmonchy song, which is an instant plus. Despite the band being a foursome, the song has the musical specificity of a power trio. If the chainsaw is a dream and if the previous song ended by falling into a dream, the boom of this song marks the end of the dream. And Base Ball Bear returns to their normal selves.

Love & Pop, as the semi-title track, explains the album as a whole. (This is the) Love & Pop. White Twilight capably finishes off the first act, but this is the denouement that follows the climactic dream. The long guitar part marks the releasing catharsis, and the song slowly, quietly finishes. After three minutes of silence, the rainy epilogue begins. The song is a steady rain: it doesn't let up, it doesn't get harder. Shiori's vocals enter at the end to provide a stronger downpour, but in the end we are left with puddles. I understand why Yurina listened to the album many times on repeat: it's more fun to play in fresh puddles.

(What is the) Love & Pop? works as an album as a whole. My favorite thing in music is a cohesive album. It's the one thing I've missed since I've turned to the dark pleasures of pop music that is steeped in the idea of the single. Despite being anchored by singles, this album tells a continuous story.

#17 Petit Melon

Petit Melon
  • Fruit Unity

Posted 02 October 2009 - 08:05 AM

[What is the]Love & Pop?
horrible first person rambling because I suck at first person pov hey em-el I think I got 1000 words
by petitmelon

My best friend strips for a living. We didn't meet like that, I've known the girl since she was five. She always lamented being left out of the “cool” crowd. Somewhere along the line she fell in love with some dumbass that took advantage of her daddy issues and instead of breaking up with the guy she follows his whim. Thus, stripping. I'm sure the coke deadens the pain of knowing you've fucked up. But hey, at least your fellow druggies think you're cool! Goodbye physics degree, hello pussy slicked poles. By the way, that's a catfight inducing incident. No one likes being embarrassed on stage, especially when there's dollar bills on the line. And remember to lock up your cash with those one night stands. They're apt to rob you blind come morning! Oh dear, I'm bitter again. What makes me think of this? The cover reminds me of a certain abstract cover of a famous band. After the “William Hung disguised as Ozzy CD” birthday prank I bought her that CD as an apology.

When I'm listening to music I like to either put the cans on or put the buds in and walk. This album is made for walking. It's like having your personal soundtrack. People don't walk around here much. We have buses, but they're mostly used by the immigrants who were unfortunate to get caught without a license. Those ice cream bars they peddle are out of this world though.

It's really interesting to see how the world syncs up to the music in your ears. I like walking along the only street that has a speed limit above 35. They're moving so fast it's like you're in slow motion. My steps match the light beat, almost skipping, until it stops abruptly. “Bo.Ku.Wa. Stairway Generation.” I stand in place as it winds down, managing to catch the eye of some passenger in an SUV. Our eyes keep contact as long as possible, until I'm left watching them drive off to their unimportant destination. Little kid. Probably a dentist appointment. Remember to brush, children!

It's only a few seconds, but somewhere it transitions to the next song. I'm picking up my pace as it goes along, and once he starts yelling “I send” my body forces me to run with him. I keep my feet in time with the drums, my eyes straight ahead, my breaths in time with his words. I hardly notice my fatigue. The song forces me forward, and I'm focused entirely on the energy. For a brief period, I fly. And as quickly as this euphoria comes, it vanishes. My lungs burn, my feet throb, my side pulsates with wave after wave of pain. Hey, I never said I was in perfect shape.

This song is slower. I can catch my breath, hunched over, probably being laughed at by people thinking chubbies exercising is hilarious. At least I don't feast on a Snickers after working out or try to cover myself with a dishtowel after a shower while my fat jiggles put jell-o to shame. Her nipples reach her belly button, oh my god! Not to mention arguing that Vitamin water is healthier because...wait for it... the nutrition facts have numbers and water does not! Ch-ch-changes knocks me off my ass. It's a nice poppy song. Nice and catchy. I'll be singing ch-ch-changes all day long. Oh, there's a surprise at the end too! I love little presents like that. It's like finding that fly in your drink after you've taken a sip. Did that fly just now land? The legs aren't moving, bad sign. Well, flies die quickly, right? It's a fatass, probably killed itself trying to get out in seconds. Don't worry about it. Just dump the drink out and pretend you never saw it. Then, just before you dump it, you take one last look at the bug. The damn thing looks you. The stomach churns, the acid is swallowed and it burns. Without a second thought the bug washed to its humble grave. It says one last goodbye, but you can't understand it's high pitched fly language.

There was a poor boy whose heart I got the distinct pleasure of seeing broken twice. I went to elementary with the lad, he had a crush on my best friend at the time. He slips her a letter. I don't remember what was in it, but I do remember he had impossibly sloppy handwriting. I think I marked all his answers wrong because I couldn't read it. Why not mark it correctly? I never said I was a good child. The two could've been made for each other. When Jojo moved away and we wrote for that brief period in time, her letters became the highlight of lunch periods. Just what is she saying? Her handwriting and spelling were out of this world in their complexity. But ever cyphers, we always discovered the code by the end of the period. But she did not like the boy and we set out to write a Love Letter from Heart Beat. Drenched in three perfumes, five lipsticks that belonged to two sets of lips, and lyrics from an N-Sync song, it became a marvel, the creative peak of our short lives. He cried after reading it. While my girlfriends relished in his pain, my heart grew five sizes too big. Never again did I act so cruel to someone so undeserving. Flash forward to high school. He's dating one of my friends, a cute country girl with a soft spot for The Monkees and acorns (pronounced eh-kerns, mind you). He rides his horse over to her ranch and they have a cute cowboy romance. But then she meets Mister Jock with the muscles and the spiky blonde hair. He is dumped. He rides his horse over to her house several times after that, waiting for a white twilight to bring back his love. He got a restraining order. I guess now he's still waiting for that breeze girl to come along and whisk his heart away. I should ask. He's a security guard at my workplace now. Hey, it happens when you live in a town as small as mine.

This next song has a nice beat. I feel like dancing. I could spin around or something, but I'm not the most graceful person in the world. Give me a 1-2-3-4-5 and I'll do great, but +1 and +2 will have me plastered against the wall. Right and Left are interchangeable, really they are. I have an awesome scar on my knee I got from falling onto a bowel. I wish I could have a cooler story to tell about it, because the scar is so bad ass, but alas.

The first thing I notice are the organs. Of the dog that's been run over, naturally. I'm sad for a moment, but my scientific mind takes over and I study its decomposition. It a long time ago, the flesh has mostly rotted away. Amazing no one's thought to bury it. I had a monologue in high school that had me talking about a cat's skeleton. “I got the cat from the ASPCA immediately after it had been killed by some high pressure air system. That method SUCKS the AIR from the animal's lungs and RUPTURES all its insides. They say it prevents cruelty to animals, but I think they're lying. Ha. Haha. Hahahahahaha!” Oh, it works better in my special voice. I boiled the skin off and meticulously glued the skeleton together as it goes on. Such an awesome part. Dissecting is always my favorite part of biology. The frog, sadly, left me without freedom. After we were finished I cut off the head, scooped the insides out, and made it into a thumb topper. The faces on my friends were priceless! The teachers kept close watch on me after that.

Oh this song is my absolute favorite. It's like seeing an ex dragging their annoying kids around. Yes! I dodged a bullet! I'm still a primigravida baby! The best part is looking at the kids and deciding they're ugly. What if our genetics had combined and I had ugly kids like that? What a sad existence. Their ugliness is in no way determined by the chickenshit way of dumping over an e-mail. Some kids are just ugly.

I think this next song is the equivalent of rambling in song form. It's long, complex, and disjointed, yet somehow makes sense after reading all of it. The ending is rather strange, yet fitting.

Patience is always rewarded. I think people stress over too many things. Sometimes you need to relax and take life slowly, take in all the sights and senses. You'll be rewarded with a nice ending.


In other words, this album is amazing.