Musically this is Mano's third best album. In imitation of my life, it bounces around trying different genres without mastering any. It really is More Friends Over, because in addition to the Sharan Q help of Hakate and Taisei, we continue adding people as composers as they started with the singles.
We open with the police theme. It has the feeling of a theme song for a show about police. I can see the protagonist running around and then the camera freeze-framing on her at the "KISS
" parts. I feel like "DokiDoki Baby" would have fit on the album along with this song. Something just doesn't feel right. This needs another listen. Once the dude stops backup singing, I like it a lot more. And Mano being threatening is always good for a spell. Completely made by someone named manzo
Everyone heard "Glory days
" already I suppose. In addition to the lowish-fi sound of it, I really like Hatake's guitar parts in it.
The first "Michiko
" track is less than a minute long. An odd voice named Michiko asks Mano to list ten things made with eggs. And then it ends.
The remake of "Tasogare Kousaten" named "Eien
" is mostly the same except with a livelier arrangement. Oh yeah, also completely different lyrics. It's almost like the composer wrote lyrics for the single version and then afterwards they informed him that Mano had a personal lyricist. Or Miura Yoshiko saw the other lyrics and said "Dude, why did you put ellipses all over the place?" and then proceeded to write a real song.
I guess Taisei didn't have time to write any new songs so he just reused a song he had written for SharanQ
. Well, it's the first time Mano has sung lyrics written by Makoto at least.
"I have a dream
" is another Hatake song. It's one of his slower songs, but it's sadly more "Kono Mune no Tokimeki wo" than "Arashi no Mae no Candle". Like many of the songs on this album, it faithfully hits its aimed at genre but not in any exciting manner.
The second "Michiko
" track is twice as long because it has two different tasks. This one had me giggling because they force Mano to do all sorts of sound effects. Mano expresses amusement at the game as it comes on, and it continues to amuse.
Just look at the title of "Banzai! ~Jinsei wa Mecha Wonderful!~
" This is the sort of inane song with meaningless lyrics that people who don't know Japanese pop imagine all Japanese pop to be. But... it's fun. The horns are fun and it wakes me up. Sure, I'd probably hate it except I'll always associate it with the first time I heard it. Mano was teaching us all the call and response and dances we were supposed to do during the song. She was really enjoying being teacher. There were like eight different responses, I think the explanation and practice took longer than the actual song. This song appropriately captures its intended genre better than the others so far. This song was made by the Honjou/Harada team that brought us the last single.
The next song continues the horns of of "Banzai", but since it was written by Takui
, it is far less vapid. The lyrics of Miura also shine. It feels like a natural extension of Takui's previous song "10 Carat no Kirameki".Hatake
returns to us in the next song. It starts off sounding like this will be the "Arashi no Mae" of this album. It is, but he also adds more of his guitar in there. This song marks a new lyricist for Mano, named Makiho Emi.
Mano expresses slight surprise at the game for the third "Michiko
" section. I laughed a lot, but it continues to be a pale imitation of "Datenshi Ellie". As with everything on this album, it seems like nobody cared that much about poor Mano except Takui.
Despite being iffy about "My Days for You
" when it came out, it feels like a breath of fresh air in this album that has no direction.
The last song
is by another new duo that seems to have done nothing else ever. I don't know how to read his name, but let's just pretend it's Kousaki Kaito. It's not a bad song. It completes the second half of the album which felt better than the first half. I don't know, maybe I was in a bad mood for the first 27 minutes.
I guess Taisei gave up on Mano, as he hasn't composed anything for her in a really long time, despite being her producer. They passed her around to so many composers on this album. With all the new names, they clearly don't want to spend too much time on her.