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Monday, January 19, 2009

Yasashi Kimochi is, well....

Here it is.

Like I said last month, this steady flow of releases is great. This song feels like 5 steps back after the excellent TLKG though.

This is exactly the kind of harmless elevator music I was hoping they left behind. Are there any audible traces of Halcali in this tune at all? To remain positive- what with the Chara sampling etc., perhaps a decent chart position lies in wait for this single. A bit more exposure would be something at least.

Listening to this song is certainly frustrating.

One of the distinctive things about following this band though, is that they are so unpredictable. Largely due to it being rather a free for all in terms of what producers they get to work with, you literally never know what's around the corner for these guys, both in terms of style and quality.

I think it must be the prospect that maybe the next one will grab me, maybe the next one will be another unique slice of pop genius, maybe the next one will be a song I can't wait to put onto that compilation I'm making for a friend's birthday etc. that keeps me hooked on Halcali.

Thanks to julia and Mr. Anonymous for the link!


Anonymous gilgameHEARTS said...

I don't think this is "elevator music" at all.
Yeah, it's a slower track, but that doesn't instantly equal bad.

I wish the single was going to have an instrumental track just because the song itself is so sophisticated and well produced. I think this song is a really great step for them. It's not like they've quit being HALCALI, but I'm glad they're trying to work a bit of an image out to the public with this video. LKGB's video was- honestly- not very good. It doesn't portray the two of them very well, and who looks at the two of them dressed up goofy but not ACTING goofy and relates to them? (reference to LKGB MV)

Anyway, I think the song is really great. When they first played it live back @ E-TRIPPER on December 4th, I wasn't sure if I liked it or not- but after listening to the song a few more times live, and with the PV coming out, I really DO like this song.

11:23 PM

Anonymous Novaforever said...

I also respectfully disagree. Everyone seems so keen to judge HALCALI's slower tracks as bad and instantly writes them off.

I've listened to this song at least a dozen times now and I think I like it more every time I play it. I honestly think this is my favorite A-side they have made since Twinkle Star. I enjoy it just that much. I think it is a perfectly natural evolutionary step for them to move into a more mature sound and it totally works with the Chara mixed into the song. Just give the song a few more listens and see if you feel the same way. Some of the transitions from refrain into rap are so smooth and beautiful...

2:26 AM

Blogger Mattis said...

Thing is, what was previously a distinct 'halcali' sound has now evolved into nothing else than regular j-pop with halcali rap.

It's sad for us who saw a new sound be born with the Bacon album to see it die as quickly. (which is also why I don't dislike tip taps tip, it has some funky electronic undertone that, for me, conveys some HALCALI through the softness)

Fuck. Does anyone know if there's a way to get ahold of halcali vocal tracks? I need to remix shit to feel good again.

2:38 AM

Blogger ssslithe said...

Ugh. This is such a hideously cynical release. It reeks of desperation, a last-ditch attempt to sell some CDs by covering a '90s J-pop song that had mass appeal. The only saving grace is that it's not as bad as the original, because while singing is not exactly HalCali's forte, very few people have a voice more unpleasant than Chara's.

This just isn't the HalCali I fell in love with. It's not an awful track, but there's nothing distinct about it at all. You hear this crap everywhere in Japan. It says something powerful about the state of the music industry here: originality doesn't sell, and any artist showing a bit of flair or imagination is soon forced to pump out bland rubbish if they want to get into the charts. I just wish HalCali would get back to putting out solid records that stand a chance of being remembered in 10 years and doing business abroad, rather than these soulless cash-in tracks that they're not even very good at.

Sorry! Rant over.

3:50 AM

Blogger jariten said...

First of all let me say that I'm glad some of you guys are enjoying it.

Next- my dislike of this song has nothing to do with the speed of it. Halcali have arguably been grappling with 'maturing' their sound (an obvious and logical step) since the Ongaku No Susume days.

For me, there is simply no spark of life in this song, no personality (which Halcali are usually, on their good days at least, bursting at the seams with), nothing to distinguish it from the herd. If this wasn't Halcali I'd listen to it once then forget about it.

Personal opinions of course!

8:23 AM

Blogger Mattis said...

If it's maturing their sound that it's all about they should so go the Flash way, in my opinion! O:

Some hard playful beats with their rapping on top would sound might fine.

A second listening-through of this song makes me think this song is actually good in standard j-pop-terms, the singing + rap combination + jingle bells winter feeling is great, and the girls are so dang cute in the vid :D, esp. Yucali (:

One thing that feels kinda sad is how Halca (spelling it like that looks so weeeeird to a westerner like me :D) does this soft-rap voice that's just, i dunno, very lame. Her rapping voice in the uptempo songs is always so full of attitude. Duuh, I'm not wishing that they dress up in hip hop scarf-on-head+cap combo and lolbling, but some of the playfulness that made it okay for them to dress up as christmas trees with brown converse shoes and dance stupid dances -

if that's what you're looking for then this song is the antithesis.

I think that's why people can and will be unfair in judging this song. The song in itself isn't a bad song, but the song in the HALCALI context just makes me feel so hollow inside. Sony PLZ what the hell are you doooooing D:

2:07 PM

Anonymous julia said...

I was like "oooh new halcali song, it's better than Long Kiss Good Bye: it's GREAT!" when I first heard it.
But it isn't that great.
You're right.
It is really a j-pop song with Halcali rap and it doesn't sound like Halcali.

I don't know what to think, but yeah, you don't know what to except these days. I'm still keeping my hopes up, though... of course, what else...?

It is an excellent pop song. But excellent Halcali song? No.
I'm afraid I'm already forgetting it although it's only been a few days. Or am I...?
I'm reflecting over it.

3:10 PM

Anonymous Anonymous said...

after all of your praying of lkgb to the heavens i really can't see the point in all this anti yasashii kimochiism.
it's generic.
it's a pop song.
it's more or less forgettable.
yup. it is (sadly).
but that's just what lkbg was too. if not even more.
the rapping in lkgb (if you want to call it like that) was rather lame. the verse with the vocalized "echoes" was crappy, especially with halca even lipsyncing it in the pv.
I'm not saying it sucked, it's just that both songs are really on par. sort of.
the video and production of the new song on the other hand are way beyond lkgb. i have to agree with gilgame here. the outfits in lkgb were, well on the "let's try to look goofy maybe it'll hide our loss of originality" side. i mean, the hat yukari was wearing...come on.
i'd rather have preppy clothed halcali all the time than the things they wore in lkgb.
yes, they have evolved. only time will tell if it'll turn out good. and i'm not quite sure about that.
at least on stage they are still the duo _we_ all love but i think that's not what sony wants them to be. they want them to be loved by everyone.
but if they can't decide on the kind of halcali they want to have soon i'm afraid that they will sooner or later disappear.
why should sony waste it's time and energy on something that doesn't work? anyone here who remembers hi prix? they're dead.
i don't know why they quit for life ent. but they are just what they could need right now.
a step away from the "we need to be mainstream" and back to the "let's make excellent music, even if there aren't a lot of people who enjoy it".

10:47 PM

Anonymous julia said...

I think the rapping in LKGB is great.
I listened more to the song because of the rapping than the music.

2:31 PM

Anonymous SITO said...

I like it! ...

7:06 AM

Anonymous Hasuko said...

I totally agree with ssslithe , jariten et julia
I'm also sooo frustrated after first hearing new Halcali's song :'/ The PV is great, sure, but i don't think this is a good sign to have to listen many time this song to finally admit it sounds great... (personnaly, i don't think it will work with me...). When i heard "FLASH" for the first time i immediately loved it ! And if i admit that i learnt to like "LKGB" with the time, and that i've been destabilized at first listenning, i even found it was pretty cute...
But THAT song ?! No...sorry u_u I can't stand no more this musical decline we can't never anticipate from Halcali. Maybe the b-side will make up for it but for the moment, i am very disappointed... :'(

12:46 PM

Anonymous amj said...

Some sort of streaming TV show with Halcali:


2:50 PM

Blogger Daniel said...

I for one thought it was a pretty nice song and sounded great-- it's *very* nice and soothing-- though it does feel a little bit out-of-personality for them.

Fans love Halcali because they're spirited and just plain fun. This is neither. In fact, it feels almost like a 'typical' or 'safe' track - it's just not memorable or spirited as usual.

So overall, good B-grade song, but not an A+ track like they delivered in their Long Kiss/Flash release.

But that actually doesn't bother me. I am rather surprised how many fans felt really let-down or critical after hearing this track... it's not like any other albums (except maybe Long Kiss/Flash :D) they've released was entirely A+ worthy songs.

I know that as longtime watchers of Halcali, we'd like to imagine everything they touch is gold.

But why the expectations? Just enjoy them for the random lovable rapping pop group as they are... I think you can like their B-grade songs too. I have yet to see any group that delivers consistent perfection; Halcali is, after all, made of two humans.

It's like jariten said... Halcali's unpredictable. You never know where they'll take you, so no fret or worries, just enjoy the ride. I for one can enjoy their 3-star songs as much as their perfect 4-star ones.

But there goes another $20 as a I buy a CD to support the group. :P

12:16 AM

Blogger Mattis said...


I'm totally using Halcali to spice up my life and like stuff!

It's important that they keep the RIGHT SOUND so my life gets the RIGHT SOUND.

This is in essence what I'm complaining about.

Also I'm at least being consquent here becasue I couldn't stomach the LKGB song either, because to me it sounds like european schlager. Really, I mean, wait.


Just wait until the chorus! It's the same = ___=;;;

7:52 PM

Blogger ssslithe said...

"Halcali is, after all, made of two humans."

Wrong! HalCali is made up of two humans plus an army of producers, writers, A&R staff, managers, marketers... The girls themselves have little say over which songs they release. They started out as puppets for Rip Slyme, who at least had a strong and consistent vision for what HalCali was supposed to be, and now they are the puppets for a team of suits.

I have no problem with pop artists performing material written for them by other people. If a different pair of girls had been picked in those auditions and performed on 'Bacon', it might not have been as good, because Haruka and Yukari are extremely talented young women. But if the strings are being pulled by someone soulless, the puppets won't be able to dance convincingly.

Sorry to sound cynical about it, but that's exactly what HalCali have become: cynical. I don't think Haruka and Yukari are to blame for that - it's the idiots who think that covering a Chara song and picking up chart placements with a new and fickle audience is better than making consistent and creative music and growing a fanbase naturally.

7:46 AM

Anonymous gilgameHEARTS said...

while I agree with ssslithe, I feel that I should mention, as far as music is concerned, that as of late HALCALI has been writing all of their own lyrics (or at least co-writing in some cases), and they even co-composed this song, Re:やさしい気持ち, with pal@pop.

4:23 AM

Anonymous mrtwister said...

Great song but can anyone translate it?? pls if anyone knows the translation ....=D

1:10 PM


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