Dear Akina fans, I’m somewhere between a state of hyperventilation, and tearing right now. Just finished spinning DIVA in the hotel room. with me are: Jamez, Kenji, Ranbi (who picked up the CD early in the morning). all i can say is – get ready to be FLOORED by this album. this is the Akina we’ve all been waiting for. pining for. hoping for – this is the BEST FREAKIN’ DANCE ALBUM from her ever. to sum it up in 3 words, so aptly put across by Jamez – The Diva Awakes.
i recount the number of conversations i’ve had with Kenji when blasting Namie Amuro albums in the car lamenting the fact that Akina should do a kickass dance album, with a current sound, as i believe with my heart and soul that she still has it in her to deliver something like that. i mean, she’s the original J-pop Dance Diva, no?
i can’t remember the last album from her which has brought me to sucha level of euphoria. Femme Fatale? no. Stock? no. Destination? well, i love that album of hers, but it’s not even close.
it’s a totally different sound. She HAS NOT done this sound before. No other previous album comes close. Her singing technique (not a single strained note in this album i swear – she sings with her normal register, very low but extremely comfortable range), diction, sound, English pronunciation (has she been going for English lessons?) – all changed. it’s like rediscovering a brand new Akina all over again.
from the get-go, you’ll be surprised track after track. 10 songs, not a single one you’d skip. not a single favourite you can pick out immediately. throw in 2 kickass, mindblowing remixes (they can go straight into any clubs with no further work required!! DIVA Michitomo Remix stands at a whopping 7:44 minutes and is the BEST REMIX in the entire Akina career, dripping with thumpa-thumpa finesse; Heartache Michitomo Remix is actually a remix of HEARTBREAK with different lyrics infused with a refreshing clash of chinese strings Guzheng) – you have one heckavu statement. the DIVA is back alright. this is a wonderful juxtaposition against Mood Kayou, and Folk Songs 2. this girl’s got range.
suffice to say, i’d spun Destination in my car for a good half a year before taking it outta my CD player. gawd knows how long DIVA is staying in it this time.
i’ll give a track by track review later, together with the concert review, this evening. we’re running outta time here, but I wanted to share this quick and dirty review with you guys rightaway!!!!
Ok guys, sorry this took longer than expected. I had wanted to upload this before we left for the concert, but was experiencing stubborn problems with my application. anyhowzah, here’s a sampling of some highlights from DIVA!!! bon appetite! and please, you’ve gotta turn up your speakers, k? =)