Destiny Line – Ai no Matador –

Hamasaki Ayumi – HEAVEN [37th Single]

Posted on: August 27, 2008

Hamasaki Ayumi’s 37th single, entitled HEAVEN, was released on 09.15.05. The title track was used as the theme song for the Japanese film Shinobi Heart Under Blade while Will was used in a Panasonic CM.

HEAVEN, an emotional ballad, is the single’s A-side. The song begins with an absolutely beautiful instrumentation that introduces the first verse strongly. Ayu’s vocals here really communicate a sorrow that is solidified by the music. Soon the instrumentation strays away from this soft sadness and Ayu gives stronger vocals to match the louder instrumentation. The chorus stands out for just that reason, Ayu’s vocals show off the sorrow of the lyrics. HEAVEN is so pretty and it will give the listener goosebumps while listening, perhaps even making the tears fall.

The B-side of the single is the absolutely gorgeous song, Will, composed by CREA herself. Opening the song is a very pretty instrumentation driven by traditional Japanese instruments to catch the listener’s ear. Ayu then sings two lines with a prettiness in her voice that suits the music so well. The chorus becomes so memorable for the words that feature repeating syllables as Ayu’s voice really carries them strongly. During the pure instrumental section, the beauty of the music is spotlighted before the chorus is re-introduced. As the song ends, there is a lighter feeling that comes through and actually is a nice change of pace. The lyrics for this song are beautiful and Ayu’s vocals are perfect, really making this one of the best songs in her discography.

In order to promote the single, a PV for HEAVEN was made. Done completely in black & white, the video is the perfect visual representation of all the emotions of the song. Ayu sings in a train station and looking at her face, the viewer automatically believes her. The video finishes with all the other people getting on the train, leaving Ayu alone. There is a real honest beauty about this video that captures the viewer from start to finish, making it one to definitely watch.

Single Ranking: A +

Both songs on this single are beautiful, showing the fragility of Ayu. On HEAVEN, she communicates that sorrow so perfectly that the listener can’t help but feel the emotions with her. Will is the beautiful B-side composed by Ayu herself (under the name CREA) and she does a fantastic job of bringing a traditional sound here. Once again, Ayu delivers a quality single start to finish.

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