Rainy Mondays, vol. 10 – “Sasanqua”

Welcome back! For this week’s Rainy Mondays, I thought I’d shine another light on SEKAI NO OWARI. I previously featured them for their gorgeous contribution to the Mary and the Witch’s Flower soundtrack, but their first single of 2018 is just as beautiful.

The chords and instrumentation are stunning – gotta love that electric piano – and the lyrics of the chorus are so uplifting. The way Fukase sings the last verse of the first chorus (translated by Yukinekorin as “I think the main character of a story is the one who gets laughed at/Not the one who laughs at others”) warms my heart. I know Sekaowa for their more fun, upbeat songs like “RPG” and “Dragon Night,” but this shows how versatile they are. It’s such a treat!

“Sasanqua” is available in the West on iTunes and Amazon.

Rainy Mondays, vol. 9 – “Mugen Mirai”

I’m calling it now: if the Chihayafuru manga maintains consistent quality as it goes on, this site will become a dedicated fansite for that series.

This is Perfume’s latest single, released last Wednesday, and as with every Perfume single since 2011, it is a tie-in song. This one is the theme song for the third live-action Chihayafuru film, released in Japan last weekend. You may recall in my review of Chihayafuru vol. 1 that Perfume previously recorded a theme for the first film. Continue reading

Rainy Mondays, vol. 8 – “Sen to Rei”

I miss talking about music on this blog. Let’s talk about a favorite of mine, Sakanaction.

Sakanaction is a rock band from Sapporo, who formed in 2005 and has been active ever since. From their humble beginnings, they eventually achieved a number one album with their latest, 2013’s Sakanaction. The above, “Sen to Rei,” comes from their third album, Shin-shiro.

I love Sakanaction because they sound very much like a modern take on late 70s/early 80s new wave, like XTC or Talking Heads. I especially love their willingness to wear their dance music influences on their sleeve. This song doesn’t feature much of that, opting instead to have synth icing over a guitar-heavy cake. That said, it’s set at a very danceable tempo, and I love the rhythm with which Yamaguchi Ichirō delivers the lyrics. I’m not entirely sure how I interpret what he’s saying here (courtesy of an English translation via kimonobeat on Tumblr), but I love the image when he sings, “at the exact moment it hits 12:00 AM/I’m space, worn out from my night flight.”

Shin-shiro, along with all of Sakanaction’s albums, is available on iTunes.

Rainy Mondays, vol. 6 – “Light House”

Welcome back!

In Virginia, the winter has been getting steadily less bitter. Through all the talk of blizzards that engulfed the Northeastern US last week, my area unfortunately did not receive much in the way of snow. We got the short end of the stick, instead being subjected to single-digit temperatures, freezing rain, and excessive salt dumps on our roads. It’s got all of the treachery associated with winter without any of the visual splendor. Though winter is my favorite season, I’ve had a hard time dealing with this intensity of cold. That winter has been dialing it back a bit has been refreshing. Continue reading