Utada Hikaru – Single Collection Vol. 2

May 8, 2011 at 8:01 pm (Utada Hikaru) ()

CD1
1. Prisoner Of Love
2. Stay Gold
3. HEART STATION
4. Kiss & Cry
5. Beautiful World
6. Flavor Of Life -Ballad Version-
7. Boku wa Kuma
8. This is Love
9. Keep Tryin’
10. Passion
11. Be My Last
12. Dareka no Negai ga Kanau Koro
13. Beautiful World -PLANiTb Acoustic Mix) 

CD2
1. Arashi no Megami
2. Show Me Love (Not A Dream)
3. Goodbye Happiness
4. Hymne a l’amour ~Ai no Anthem~
5. Can’t Wait ‘Til Christmas

I’d review the entirety of of Hikaru’s latest collection, but its really not needed. The first 12 tracks all fall in her last two albums, and there is no new mixing or mastering that her last collection had. In fact, it almost seems to early, but its still a full album size, and I must comment on the choice and flow. Best of albums and collections tend to not work as well cohesively, but here we have something that does. While it will be hard for non-Japanese speaking people to get, there is a progression to be heard in this CD (as with the first single collection), not just in sound but in maturity. Despite the singles being in reverse chronological order, it does not necessarily sound like a regression, just a change. But I have a feeling that for the most of us, that’s probably an analysis task that is beyond us at this point. But it’s good to know that its there.

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Utada Hikaru – This Is The One

May 8, 2011 at 7:53 pm (Utada Hikaru) (, )

  1. Come Back To Me
  2. Me Muero
  3. Merry Christmas Mr. Lawrence – FYI
  4. Apple and Cinnamon
  5. Taking My Money Back
  6. This One (Crying Like A Child)
  7. Automatic Part II
  8. Dirty Desire
  9. Poppin’
  10. On And On
  11. Simple And Clean
  12. Sanctuary (Opening)
  13. Sanctuary (Ending)

This is another one of those albums that I didn’t want to get when it came out, since I was so disappointed in the previews and fan reaction wasn’t that great. Sure, it came out in Canada, but wherever I looked it seemed overpriced, so I wasn’t really ready to go for it. Earlier this year when I purchased the Canadian version of UH Single Collection 2, however, I tagged this along in order to get free shipping from amazon.ca, and I don’t regret it.

 

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Utada Hikaru – Utada United 2006

May 8, 2011 at 10:34 am (Utada Hikaru) (, )

1. Opening
2. Passion
3. This Is Love
4. traveling
5. Movin’ on without you
6. SAKURA DROPS
7. FINAL DISTANCE
8. First Love
-Interlude-
9. Devil Inside
10. Kremlin Dusk
11. You make Me Want To Be A Man
12. Be My Last
13. Dareka no Negai ga Kanau Koro
14. COLORS
15. Can You Keep A Secret?
16. Addicted To You
17. Wait & See ~Risk~
18. Letters
19. Keep Tryin’
20. Automatic
21. Hikari

5 Years later? Yeah it took me that long. I had watched some clips online before, but I don’t think I really understood how awesome the concert was. I would’ve bought it before, sure, if there was an OS version that wasn’t sold out. But then I found out that the DVD was region free (as are all of Hikaru’s DVD’s). And so I really had no choice. I had to get it, no matter the price. And I don’t regret it.

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Utada Hikaru – EXODUS

May 19, 2010 at 3:53 pm (Utada Hikaru) (, )

1. Opening
2. Devil Inside
3. Exodus ’04
4. The Workout
5. Easy Breezy
6. Tippy Toe
7. Hotel Lobby
8. Animato
9. Crossover Interlude
10. Kremlin Dusk
11. You Make Me Want To Be A Man
12. Wonder ‘Bout
13. Let Me Give You My Love
14. About Me

Now, let me get this straight. DEEP RIVER was pretty amazing, and I think a lot of fans were excited to hear something like an English equivalent of that. Surely that would be a success in the States, right? Stretching fanbase, woo!

Well so much for that.

There are two types of Utada fans; those who hate Exodus, and those who don’t. Let’s just say that I managed to find an in between, but overall I was not particularly impressed.

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Utada Hikaru – HEART STATION

March 16, 2010 at 9:44 am (Utada Hikaru) (, )

1. Fight The Blues
2. HEART STATION
3. Beautiful World
4. Flavor of Life -Ballad Version-
5. Stay Gold
6. Kiss&Cry
7. Gentle Beast Interlude
8. Celebrate
9. Prisoner of Love
10. Take 5
11. Boku wa Kuma
12. Niji-iro Bus
13. Flavor of Life

HEART STATION is Utada’s 5th studio Japanese album, and further utilizes the ethereal instruments that she mastered during the ULTRA BLUE era. It’s definitely another great addition to the Utada collection, and it has the same massive collection of different sounds that made ULTRA BLUE so much fun.

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Utada Hikaru – ULTRA BLUE

March 15, 2010 at 6:10 pm (Utada Hikaru) ()

1. This Is Love
2. Keep Tryin’
3. BLUE
4. Nichiyo no Asa
5. Making Love
6. Dareka no Negai ga Kanau Koro
7. COLORS
8. One Night Magic
9. Kairo
10. WINGS
11. Be My Last
12. Eclipse (Interlude)
13. Passion

ULTRA BLUE is Utada Hikaru’s 4th Japanese studio album, and it was the first physical CD I had for a J-Pop artist. Which of coursed sparked me to buy other physical CD’s. The album itself shows a definitive growth for Utada in music, featuring basically no R&B, and much more of that Ethereal experimental Pop (explored in DEEP RIVER and Exodus). And it’s quite good, being much more refined than the last two albums.

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Utada Hikaru – DEEP RIVER

March 14, 2010 at 8:17 pm (Utada Hikaru) ()

1. SAKURA DROPS
2. traveling
3. Shiawase ni Narou
4. Deep River
5. Letters
6. Play Ball
7. Tokyo Nights
8. A.S.A.P.
9. Uso Mitaina I Love You
10. FINAL DISTANCE
11. Bridge (Interlude)
12. Hikari

DEEP RIVER is Utada’s 3rd Japanese album, and it’s definitely the first one that I really liked, since it shows a transition from R&B and Rock to experimental Ethereal Pop (or whatever you want to call it). And that was the Utada music that I got into when I first found out about her.

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Utada Hikaru – Distance

March 11, 2010 at 3:14 pm (Utada Hikaru) ()

1. Wait & See ~Risk~
2. Can You Keep A Secret?
3. DISTANCE
4. Sunglasses
5. Drama
6. Eternally
7. Addicted to You [Up In Heaven Mix]
8. For You
9. Kettobase!
10. Parody
11. Time Limit
12. Kotoba ni Naranai Kimochi
13. HAYATOCHI-REMIX

The album starts off with a single track, “Wait & See ~Risk”. I must say, I used to have this on repeat for quite some time, and I’m afraid I overplayed it. But it’s still a great track. It’s got good rock elements and a great hook, and we get some impressive vocals here too, which have definitely gotten better since First Love.

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Utada Hikaru – First Love

March 10, 2010 at 5:15 pm (Utada Hikaru) (, )

1. Automatic -Album Edit-
2. Movin’ on without you
3. In My Room
4. First Love
5. Amai Wana ~Paint it, Black
6. time will tell
7. Never Let Go
8. B&C -Album Version-
9. Another Chance
10. Interlude
11. Give Me A Reason
12. Automatic -Johny Vicious Remix-

Alright so I won’t lie, this isn’t my favourite Utada album by any means. I’m definitely not much of an R&B person, and so a lot of this is just very disinteresting to me. “First Love” was of course the only song I liked remotely, and the album really only served from then on to satisfy my Utada collection.

But of course I’m all grown up now (ha), but I’m still not an R&B person. But I’ll try my best to be unbiased. Sorta. Not really.

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