Suiyoubi no Campanella kicks off 2018 with new single “Edokko Doko Doko”

Happy new year my friends! Hope you had a great holiday season, filled with all the beautiful music that’s been released in Japan in the course of the last year.

In the last few days I’ve been thinking about how to kick off 2018 here at Land of Rising Sound, and while I definitely have a few topics I want to talk about as soon as possible, today I’ve finally stumbled upon the perfect chance to write my first post of the year: a new Suiyoubi no Campanella track!

With the release of one of the best albums of the year – and all the great singles that followed it – it’s no secret that 2017 has been the best year to date for Suiyoubi no Campanella. The trio has no intention of slowing it down though, and just yesterday, they released yet another digital single (the fifth after the release of “SUPERMAN”) titled “Edokko Doko Doko“, that also served as opening theme for a NHK educational show aired back in November.

The song features elements that reminisce of Campanella’s both recent and past productions, with layers of acoustic guitar reminding of last year’s “Melos”, but also a chorus boasting Edo-inspired soundscapes that brings the mind back to Zipang’s beautiful “Ono Imoko” (though in a slower and more relaxing key). KOM_I‘s interpretation and vocal versatility is once again the highlight of the track, seamlessly spacing from soothing vocals enriching the verses to a brief Rap break halfway through the track that shake things up a little without sounding out of place; the singer’s ability and confidence in bending her vocal skills to different approaches is always a pleasure to the ears, and it successfully enriches the number while keeping it cohesive. Spoken parts and male vocals that occasionally couple with KOM_I’s voice are also featured here, and while it may not be everyone’s cup of tea, it hardly ruins the atmosphere the track pulls off so well.

Edokko Doko Doko” may not be the most exciting post-SUPERMAN single, but it’s yet another proof of how Suiyoubi no Campanella can capture a precise sound and use it as a base to expose its trademark songwriting as well as KOM_I’s charisma and impeccable vocal skills.

You can buy “Edokko Doko Doko” and listen to a preview of it here, or watch the opening of the NHK show featuring a shorter version of the song here.

– Alex

Suiyoubi no Campanella release MV for “Unico”, KOM_I is obviously the star of the show

Electronic outfit Suiyoubi no Campanella, fronted by singer KOM_I – master of the noble art of not giving a shit – just released a music video for Unico, one of the tracks featured in the group’s mini album UMAreleased last year.

This is the second track from Campanella’s major debut release that gets a Music Video, and it’s kind of unusual how they’re trying to somehow expose this record (that received mixed reviews) even after the release of this year’s highly acclaimed SUPERMAN. My guess is that they’re trying to valorize the tracks from UMA that were somehow overshadowed by the release of their newest record, using the artistic power of their team to make these tracks shine again, which I think is a very smart move; I like artists who don’t forget about their previous albums. Unico is the slowest number from UMA, and I still think it’s one of the best from this particular release: KOM_I’s vocals perfectly fit the soothing and relaxing vibe of this track, and they kinda remind me of the mellow numbers from the outfit’s pre-major era.

Needless to say, KOM_I is the star of this video, and if you’ve been following Suiyoubi no Campanella you know she’s definitely… unique. I love her personality and how she simply wants to be herself anywhere. This video is particularly funny as she’s pretty much making everyone’s head turn like “what’s… this girl even doing?”. I love her.

Enjoy the video down here!

Suiyoubi no Campanella gets back on track with new single “SUPERKID”

Earlier this year, Suiyoubi no Campanella‘s Electro-pop made its long-awaited entrance into the mainstream scene, with several strong records under the belt as guarantee for a major label contract. Far from being a bad record, though, the debut mini album UMA didn’t fully convince the outfit’s ever growing audience, delivering good songs as well as numbers who felt uninspired and kinda rushed, a worrying signal considering the project’s well known meticulous attention for details.

From an artistic standpoint, transitions to major labels can be kind of problematic, and some artists need some time before adapting to what is undoubtedly a new reality: this is one of those cases.

Campanella’s new single, titled SUPERKID, indeed brings the project back on the high standards that spoiled us for the last four years. Featuring three new songs, this release is a short but pleasant showcase of the trio’s outstanding compositional skills, punctually framed by KOM_I’s unique charisma. Aladdin kicks in with a 80’s pop beat, following a linear structure that emphasizes vocals to boost the chorus’ entrance, while the bridge leaves space to an instrumental section, creating a good balance with KOM_I’s lyrical nonsense. Kamehameha Daiou tricks the listener with soothing vocals, while subtly implementing noisy effects and synths in the meanwhile, to then completely shift into Electronic madness towards the end, leading to an unexpected EDM drop that kicks in flawlessly: Connecting several influences and tempo changes between different sections has always been one of the project’s highlights, and it’s well represented in this track. Matsuo Bashou goes back to the classic Campanella formula, with the instrumental taking a step back to leave space to KOM_I’s remarkable interpretation, delivering the catchiest chorus of the single and a pleasant soothing vibe.

With SUPERKID, Suiyoubi no Campanella gets back on track, and sets the bar high once again for future releases. Everything that makes this project so unique is present throughout this single, and only high hopes are left for everything they have in store for us.

– Alex

Suiyoubi no Campanella – UMA | ALBUM REVIEW

aramajapan_suiyoubi-no-campanella-uma-cover-art

Release Date: June 22nd
Format: CD
Number of Editions (1): Regular Edition


Suiyoubi no Campanella make their Major Debut with a Mini Album featuring highs and lows

When you’re one of the most acclaimed uprising acts in music, the passage to a Major Label is a very delicate moment: many are expecting more from you, someone pretends that you’ll stay the same, while others will be ready to bash you, no matter what.

It’s the case of Suiyoubi no Campanella, one of the most interesting J-pop/Electronic outfits of the last years, that’s entering in the mainstream scene with a brand new contract signed with Warner Music Japan, while taking swift looks at a possible worldwide expansion in the meantime. With several valuable works under the belt, including last year’s highly acclaimed record Zipang, it’s clear that the weight this valid team of artists carries on the shoulders is everything but a joke.

With the Major Debut record UMA, Suiyoubi no Campanella brings to the table a short journey that plays with previously mastered formulas, adopts different sonorities, and experiments with new patterns, exactly as you would expect from such a creative outfit. But with so little time at their disposal, and high expectations to meet after setting the bar so high, it’s legit to wonder if this release is as solid as the group’s  previous works.

The answer is no. There are some clear flaws in this seven-tracks mini album, and some new experimentations don’t always work. On the bright side, though, it also features several enjoyable moments, and they’re mostly exposed right at the beginning, after pushing the “Play” button.

Campanella indeed kicks off this new record with Chupacabra, a number that brings back the highly acclaimed mix of Electronic music and Rap, with deep beats coupled by KOM_I’s vocals, enriched by edgy synths in a pleasant drop well placed in this masterfully structured track, which promises to be a new classic of their catalogue. The group keeps it up with the following Tsuchinoko, adopting the same classic formula in a softer way, alternating soothing and high-pitched vocals and fusing them with playful melodies, that keep the mood up in an effective way. These two tracks alone confirm how the group still got what it takes to make deep and detailed music genuinely fun, and it’s great to hear Campanella’s signature sound pleasing our ears once again.

Still, things start to change from this moment on, and it’s where the album starts to become a kind of hit and miss experience. Yeti brings interesting sonorities, but its structure feels recycled, and KOM_I’s vocals aren’t biting as usual, as if the singer doesn’t feel comfortable with this particular singing style. The following Unico is an uninspired ballad with no particular merit, and it’s kind of a let down considering how the group always managed to pull off great songs following this style. Phoenix luckily takes the mood back where it was, relying on catchy vocal melodies and a convincing chorus, and despite feeling a bit simplistic, it still manages to deliver a fun and enjoyable experience. Sadly, the last two tracks are the most disappointing part of UMA: They’re the longest numbers in here, and the will of experimenting sounds more like an excuse to deliver a rushed piece of work, with a result that’s honestly boring and unconvincing, despite a few nice passages here and there. It’s a real shame that this album had to be closed like this.

Ultimately, the main problem with this record, is that everything new tried here sounds like a rushed attempt at meeting the deadline, with some clear tricks here and there to make most of these numbers catchy and less detailed, translating in a faster line of work. The result is fine, but not as deep as you would expect from Suiyoubi no Campanella, and the fact the few tracks bringing their classic style represent the highlights of this release, is something to think about.

UMA is a record that undoubtedly feels disjointed and not polished as the group’s previous releases. In the end, though, most of its tracks are enjoyable, but not as convincing and memorable as you would expect. A real shame, considering how creative and fresh this group actually is.

Vote: 6.5 / 10


Tracklist:

01. Chupacabra
02. Tsuchinoko
03. Yeti
04. Unico
05. Phoenix
06. Tapir
07. Kraken

– Alex

Suiyoubi no Campanella delivers the funniest performance SXSW has ever seen

Electronic outfit Suiyoubi no Campanella uploaded on their YouTube channel some footage taken from the first overseas performance at the SXSW Festival in Austin, probably the best ten minutes I’ve spent today.

Singer and only performer of the group KOM_I gave her best for a super excited crowd, performing some classic from the group’s discography (including tracks from last year’s masterpiece Zipang) plus the new Chupacabra, first track off from their upcoming album dropping in June under Warner Music Japan, marking their official Major Label debut announced at the show with great response.

Not only the tracks performed entertained everyone between fans and people who was just were there out of curiosity, KOM_I truly shined in terms of presence and charisma, and this has been a huge boost in conquering new fans and delivering a killer performance: The eccentric singer had no problem in leaving the stage to climb up a container, or making the weirdest expressions on Snapchat (properly displayed on the screen behind her) or again, doing crowd-surfing inside a huge ball, and much more.

As shown by the brief interviews at the end of the video, people absolutely loved the performance, and it’s safe to say Suiyoubi no Campanella definitely gained some new fans in their first overseas performance. It couldn’t be otherwise when a singer is such a great entertainer and performer, but most of all, a girl that sings and performs just for fun. And that’s the best thing to see in a live show. Check out the video above!

– Alex