Tuesday, September 1, 2015
Pretty Guardian Sailor Moon Crystal Character Song Collection CD review
Release date: April 29, 2015
Since I have the iTunes version of the album all I have to review with this are the songs themselves.
1. Futtemo Haretemo -come rain or come shine- Naturally the album starts off with the character song for Sailor Moon/Tsukino Usagi. It is a song that I can see falling nicely in with all the previous character songs for the character, especially as she is the only one to retain her original voice actor from the original anime. But there are parts that seem to take their cues from those 90s songs, especially the few lines before the the chorus and then the chorus itself. So if you liked Usagi's character songs from the original anime series then you will most likely enjoy this song as well.
2. A Touch of Rain - Following is of course Sailor Mercury/Mizuno Ami's character song. I love this song, which surprised me as I have never cared too much for Ami's previous character songs. I think having a different voice actress who seems to have a stronger singing voice (or better sound equipment to use to make up for one) might be part of the reason. That said I love how it starts soft and builds to the chorus. Even though it is a more mellow song it does not bore with enough happening with the music, like the addition of instruments at parts as the verses build to the chorus, and a good break so it does not become monotonous.
3. Hi no Umi - Sailor Mars/Hino Rei gets a rock flavored song. It is probably the greatest change in style from past character songs. But mostly as her songs tended to stick with pop. But like most of Rei's songs this one is a standout on the album, and partly because it goes pop-rock instead of the more general pop of the rest. It has some nice energy to it and I quite enjoy that it has a guitar solo and that it gets followed up with a short a capella segment for a good contrast. Also love the part near the end when things get changed up with the vocals to give it a driving sound.
4. cherry pie - I have never really cared too much for most of the songs that Sailor Jupiter/Kino Makoto has been given for her character songs but I love this one. It has a nice beat that runs through it and just sounds so upbeat and poppy. It does have a sound that is a bit reminiscent of the kinds of songs the series had for character songs but not quite. The chorus is the shining point of the song but later in the song there are some change up to the verses that are nice to give some contrast to the rest of the song without being distracting.
5. ♥ ga Tonjyau Sora Dakara - Sailor Venus/Aino Minako is my favorite character so I always hope that she gets good character songs. After being spoiled with the live action adaption with having plenty of songs for the character it is back to only having the same amount as the rest and thankfully this is a good song. Not my favorite Sailor Venus song but still one that is something I can see myself putting on a playlist just because I do want to listen to it. That aside it has a stronger beat than Makoto's that gives it a sense of urgency in the verses until it hits the chorus where things seem to relax a lighter in tone.
6. Kimi no Hitomi no Moonrise - This is the character song for Tuxedo Mask/Chiba Mamoru. I have never cared for his character songs in general and this has not changed that at all. It has a jazzy sound mixed in with the standard pop, which does seem fitting for the character at least. There is just something about the chorus I really do not like. Almost like it is trying to build something there but it just falls flat. It is a pity as the verses sound fine to me for the most part but I just do not feel satisfied with how the song moves through the chorus.
7. I'm Going Down - The Four Kings (Malachite, Zoicite, Nephrite and Jadeite) get a song of their own, which actually seems aptly titled considering their fate in the series. It has an electronic sound to it, which includes the voices so if you ever thought the Sailor Moon series lacked autotune in its music then this song helps fill that void. It thankfully is not used abundantly and does work mostly for when it is used though at the end it does start to seem a little overused. The song has a bit of an urgent feel to it with its beat but it comes off rather lackluster. It is not a bad song but when compared to the rest on the album it does not stand up so well.
8. Mayonaka no secret talk - The first duet song on the album and it features Ami and Makoto. It has a nice sweet sound to it that harkens back to older Sailor Moon songs, especially in the chorus. The vocals are a really nice fit for it and helps give it a relaxing feeling and go along well together. The 'oyasumi' at the end is a nice touch, as this just seems like a good song to go to sleep to.
9. Star on Stars - The second and final duet song on the album, this one featuring Rei and Minako. It has a big band style to it, which also includes a random guy saying a few words here and there throughout the song. The guy annoys me as I can understand maybe having him at the start or end but in the middle the song just takes me out of it completely and bugs me as I then have to get myself back into the song. Which is a pity as otherwise I enjoy it for the fun that it is, even though it does sound pretty generic.
10. Kakumei wa Night & Day - This is the group song for all the Sailor Guardians and considering there is a good mix of vocal strength it does not come out too bad. The verses tend to be mostly solo lines with the chorus being, well chorus singing of the five. It has a driving beat giving it a sense of urgency and while not as strong as Ai no Senshi it sounds like it is something aiming to be in that vein at least. It just lacks the epic sound of that song.
Overall: A solid addition to the Sailor Moon discography for character songs. Even though it is a bit of a mixed bag so are basically all the previous character songs as well. And honestly the main appeal for these are that you are getting music based off characters and performed by their voice actors as they are portraying them. So unless you are a fan of either the series or the voice actors then there is little reason to pick the album up.
That said it is not a bad grouping of anime songs so if you enjoy anisongs then you should at least give this a listen.