Folk Akina

I am a little shocked for words when I saw the cover. It’s not something that I had expected and I understand that these images are really too blur to judge, but they are bond to polarise her fans.

通常盤 (Normal)

初回盤D

初回盤C

初回盤B

初回盤A:CD+DVD

See what I mean? This is the blurb under the covers:

“中森明菜は、アメリカン・カルチャー、特にアンディ・ウォーホルの作品には大きな影響を受けている。中でも「マリリン・モンロー」は彼女のお気に入りの作品。今作はこれらにインスパイアーされ、自身の作品にウォーホルの手法を使いたいという中森たっての願いが実現したアートワークです。

※このCDジャケットのイメージは、THE ANDY WARHOL FOUNDATION FOR THE VISUAL ARTS, INC. に申請し、了承を得ております。”

“It roughly translates into (because my Japanese is not good): Akina is heavily influenced by American culture, especially by Andy Warhol’s work, and his portrait of Marilyn Monroe in particular. Akina wishes to fulfill an earnest wish of her own by creating an artwork of her own, drawing from the inspiration of Warhol.

This cover art has the approval from the Andy Warhol Foundation For Visual Arts.”

I think I am surprised or shocked because I don’t know if I like it or hate it. The first impression was “Oh No!”, and then after reading the blurb, I understood her creativity, but then again, was a little disappointed because I was looking forward to another “Enka” I guess.

I was thinking that it is a little like “Been there, done that” but after more thought, I finally see the link between this album and this cover concept because Warhol was huge in the 70s, which fits the theme of this album well.

I think I need to see the higher resolution photos to decide, but it is interesting to see that she has written (if I am not blind) “Compilation Vol. 1 Folk Akina”, which is quite a far cry from the actual title. Is this the only way she will allow her full face to appear on another cover?

What do you think? I hope to be able to upload better quality photos soon when they are released. I wonder if it will create some media buzz? As they say, there is no such thing as bad publicity.

jamezle

31 thoughts on “Folk Akina

  1. really didnt expect the covers would be like how they look now. i have decided not to decide whether i like it or not. to me, it’s the impact/shock that the covers create that matter. and after all, the impact is still a positive one (esp. compared to that of resonancia!!!). and as for the ‘folk akina’ title, are they playin sth tricky here? lol *blink*

  2. and personally , it’s wise not to relate the album to ‘utahime’ again, as that series is supposed to have ended.

  3. This HAS GOT to be a joke, right? I can’t decide which limited edition cover to waste my money on. I thought the Grey one was bad, but then i saw the Pink eye shadow and thought no, that was worse… and then I saw the Orange Green horror…

    WHY, AKINA ,WHY?

    But then again, I have this theory about Akina’s cover art – she alternates a good work with a super bad one. And then she restores confidence again with a good one, only to dash all pipe dreams of a consecutive home run. She’s a masochist.

    “This cover art has the approval from the Andy Warhol Foundation For Visual Arts.” – HA! you mean they actually approved these pieces of cheap Photoshop filtered junk?

    The typography on the covers are not consistent too in terms of font and placement. The whole thing just reeks of a lack of authenticity.

    Suddenly the normal press cover looks fabulous.

    Well, there’s always Project NakamoRi.Mix for me to work on. If she can’t do proper quality control, guess we’ll have to satisfy our own dreams.

  4. somehow, the normal press reminds us of Femme Fatale…but it is difficult to perfect that shot twice (since 1988?!)

  5. I really doubt a clearer image will be nicer. More probably more horrific cos it’s clearer! HAHA. I won’t even think about the art work inside.

  6. Ah yes, Andy Warhol and his famous style. Quite the convenient way to hide your face once more Akina, touché.

    Somebody really ought to break her the news that it’s not the wrinkles on her face that we gasp at, it’s the ascetic frame that she calls her normal body weight.

    For crying out loud, these look like some cheap Various Artists music label compilations!

  7. Wow! Looks like it is not polarising at all. Everyone hates it. Danny and MG, you are both so funny, and Jerry too, but I hate to think of that.

  8. ok la, first look is so terrible, but think the other way, Akina is always doing something to open people’s eyes, specially on her covers. Enka, Resonancia, Stock, Spoon, etc. and think the possitive way, I think non of the artists in the world would have this kind of creative idea, anyway, reserve your copy at the store soon…

  9. I guess that with the next possible album cover she’ll inform us of being also a great fan of Picasso and escape the need for a proper photo by having a distorted painting of herself, though I could imagine it looking much more interesting than this.

  10. No, it’s easier to emulate Monet. Just blur the photo with photoshop. What the heck, just use the ones above. 😉

    I see that it is definitely pissing her International fans off. I wonder what her Japanese fans think?

    Danny, you have to buy another copy of Enka just to mask the new album you are buying.

  11. And i wanna add that conceptually it’s rather exciting, but it’s all about the execution which went pear-shaped.

    i really dun like the white bands at the top and bottom. Urgh.

  12. I have just talk to my friend (who’s Japanese artists reporter) says Akina is having other new album release on spring /09, and its already recorded. she sings those two songs in dinner show, will be release on next album…

  13. Yes Wei, she’s released info on a radio talskshow about the Mood Kayou album. And she will sing 3 new songs on the Dinner Show during the middle segment.

  14. > I wonder what her Japanese fans think?

    I’m a Japanese fan and of the same age as Akina. I also am surprised or a little bit perplexed to see this cover art with psychedelic use of colors. When I see the song list of this album, it reminds me that we sung them together at the classroom meetings after lessons in junior high school or in the bus on the occasion of school excursion. So there is no association with Warhol! The same thnig must be true with Akina.

    In addition, among Japanese folk songs, we count many popular pieces called as “四畳半フォーク”( “神田川”for example),in which daily life of young and poor students are described in a rather intimate way.They are quite far from any kind of sophistication or avanguardism.

    So, I think that putting these folk songs with Warhol already signifies sonmething.That is, she would want to put well-know music in a dfferent conetxt.I guess that she makes something new also in her performance including arrangement.I’m now looking forward to listening to sounds which would be little similar to those of traditional folk songs.

  15. Yes, thank you for your valuable input, 突角眠. It is so nice to know that there are Akina’s Japanese fans who visit VAMP as well. Hope you enjoyed yourself.

    I read that Akina’s favourite subject was English during school, so like me when I was growing up in Singapore, I might have immersed myself in more than other’s fair share of JPop culture. My Japanese friends usually joke (or maybe not) that I know more than they do and it’s genuinely scary. LOL.

    I believe Akina would have been too young then for Warhol, so I tend to agree with what you had suggested, and hope that this album will be another jewel in her crown. Now, i only she would actually come out and promote the album.

  16. Okay, the clear versions are up!!! Sadly, I don’t think it improves my impression. On the contrary, I hate the different style of fonts for every cover. I’d never thought I’d say this but the cover for the 通常盤 is gorgeous by comparison.

    Akina, did you hear me … G-O-R-G-E-O-U-S.

  17. Green one looks the nicest in a way because I think the colors make her look like she’s smiling with her eyes. Dark Violet looks like she’s gone goth. I still think they could have taken far better photo than this. And I also don’t get the white bands.

  18. Sorry for being late on this topic.

    This Warhol’s style has been over used to the level of extremly boring.

    However, what annoy me the most is that it has nothing to do with folk style. It’s like having an un-plugged album with a dance techno album cover. It made no sense.

    I look forward to this album though. The song style fit Akina and have a potential.

    I might use Sand Beige’s cover as a replacement cover art.

  19. GOOD DAY!Dan~
    I “FINALLY”got this “NEW’ album from record store yesterday!!! But it was still queit expensive in “環球代理進口版”~it costed NT999!!!
    Her voice seems better than before!!! But I think 11 songs are 太少了!!!And I really hope we can hear her new single more in the future!

  20. Hey A-Li! I’m glad you finally got hold of the album. 11 songs and too few? HAHAH. We’ll never get enough of her right? There’s supposed to be a Mood Kayou album to be released too, but no follow up news on that.

  21. The songs on Folk Akina are all very easy-listening and I truly enjoy it. Further, the key which Akina performed in is quite difficult, showing her immense singing talent and technique!

  22. Besides Folk Akina, I was told D404me is a super good Album. The re-issue was released about 3 years ago and it seems like it is all sold out in HK. Can any HK fans tell me whether it is true or not? How about in Japan? I wonder if other fans like Kiki Chan has a copy of this super classic?

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