alan - Hitotsu

review - 10.16.2008 08:00

Second single of the new young singer.

alan is a charming young girl who made her debut in November 2007 with Ashita e no sanka. She came back last spring with this single, Hitotsu, and a well-made music video to match.

The title song, Hitotsu, is a typical, heart-wrenching ballad that flourishes all year round in the J-pop scene. However, the song is well-composed, with a touching melody and some different instruments not usually found in J-pop ballads - pipes, for example, are used during the bridge. The songs quickly grows on the listener and the melody of the chorus is simple but beautiful. It will stay in your head after the first listen. So, while it's not that original, the song is really pleasant to listen to.

Kimi omou sora is a mid-tempo song that is also quite nice. It sounds even more commonplace than the first track, but this time we can hear some flute between the verses, which keep the light, traditional feeling that we felt in the first song. Tokyo mimei, the third track of this single, is another ballad, but with a slight R&B twist. The songs feels like a track by EXILE, Kumi Koda, Misia or any other J-R&B artist. This means Tokyo mimei is not bad, but it sounds like we've heard it a thousand times already. Unfortunately, alan's voice is not that strong to begin with, so this song would be better sung by these other artists who at least have better voices.

The last track, sign, begins with a chant that reminds of Indian music and suddenly transforms into a mysterious, electronica piece. There are little to no lyrics in this song, except the Indian-like chant from time to time. This track sounds somewhat weird, but it also feels like you're in another world, and the three minutes fly by quickly.

Overall, this single is obviously not the most original the Japanese music market has produced this year, but old school J-pop lovers will love the first track. It is the best song on this single. The other tracks are nice to listen to, but other artists have done better in the same genre.
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