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Archive for the ‘ayaka’ Category

ayaka’s 4th single, entitled 三日月, was released on 09.27.06. Originally this song was picked to be ayaka’s debut single but for unknown reasons, it was pushed back. The title track was used as a CM song for a chain of Japanese record stores and as a promotional song for @Human.

三日月 is a powerful ballad that touches the listener’s heart. The emotional atomsphere is established right from the opening instrumental and then ayaka comes in for the first verse. Her vocals here are wonderful, supporting the piano perfectly. On the chorus, the emotions seem to come even stronger as it almost feels like ayaka is tearing up while singing with such beauty, power and control. The third verse allows for a nice little change of pace as the music takes a new turn. This is a great ballad with wonderful vocals to enhance the song’s atmosphere.

君のキスで… is a fantastic uptempo number drawing on Spanish influences. The song starts off with a nice upbeat Spanish influenced instrumental that immediately catches the listener’s ear. Her vocals during the verse carry that certain smoothness that only ayaka can bring. The chorus allows ayaka to show off her powerful her voice can be and with the more aggressive instrumental, taking on some rocky sounds, it really stands out from the rest of the song.

In order to promote the single, two PVs for 三日月 was made. One was made before ayaka’s official debut, which features ayaka sitting in a boat and sitting and watching absolutely gorgeous scenery. The other PV made during the actual single promotion time features ayaka sitting on a lamp-post.

Single Ranking: A

As the final single before the release of First Message, 三日月 was a great single from start to finish. The A-side is a great ballad with the emotions in the forefront for the listener to enjoy. 君のキスで… takes on Spanish sounds and it’s different from other songs done by ayaka so it’s a nice new treat.


ayaka’s 3rd single, entitled Real Voice, was released on 07.19.06. The title track was used as the ending theme for the Japanese dorama suppli.

Real Voice is an insanely catchy upbeat number. The song begins with ayaka singing a line and there seems to be a slight distortion on her voice but there is such a catchiness in it that the listener is immediately drawn in. Following is a section of pure instrumentation which starts off a bit mellow but then grows into being more diverse and catchy with the first verse following. Her vocals during the first verse go perfectly with the music and the light rock sounds work really well here. On the chorus, it returns to that catchiness presented in the first line and it allows her to show off a little more vocally here. The third verse has a way of building up as each syllable is accentuated by ayaka’s voice, which keeps the attention focused strongly. Real Voice is another great A-side from ayaka and is the best of her first three singles.

ayaka is supported by the simplistic and beautiful sounds of the piano for the single’s B-side, Peace Loving People. Once again, there is a certain natural element about this song that allows ayaka’s vocals to come shining through. Her vocals are as strong as ever, keeping a certain upbeat and happy atmosphere that really translates in the listener’s ear. It’s a wonderful B-side and perfect compliment to the more poppy A-side.

In order to promote the single, a PV for Real Voice was made. This video focuses nicely on close-up shots of ayaka and it’s a nice change of pace although it’s not a very interesting video and her hair style should been just let down. It’s not great but it’s worth a look every now and then.

Single Ranking: A +

Real Voice is an even better single than her first two singles. While the A-side is a very upbeat and catchy song, Peace Loving People is a very pretty softer song. Both songs have an addictiveness to them that the listener just falls in love with.

ayaka’s 2nd single, entitled Melody ~Sounds Real,~ was released on 05.17.06. The B-side, ブルーデイズ, was used as an insert song for a Japanese dorama entitled Suppli. This single was limited, with only 50,000 copies.

Melody ~Sounds Real~ is an enjoyable upbeat song that evokes a happy feeling. The song begins with an upbeat instrumentation that actually takes on some country elements to make a very natural atmosphere that ayaka’s voice supports perfectly. She sounds really nice on the first verse as there is that catchiness but it’s the chorus that really stands out as she sings “melody” with such an addictive quality that the listener is engaged. Her vocals here are also a little bit stronger so they stand out in the listener’s mind more. On the pure instrumental section, the guitar is nicely spotlighted and it even takes on some slight rock influences to really make this section stand out. Overall, this is an excellent song that definitely is a memorable song

Things slow down a bit for the single’s B-side, ブルーデイズ. Opening the song is a nice acoustic instrumental that evokes a very relaxing feeling for the listener. Following is the first verse and ayaka’s vocals here are pretty soft, capturing that natural essence of the song. The chorus nicely stands out as she reaches a little higher on some notes and delivers some notes with more power. This song is a very nice number and ayaka does a good job of delivering vocals to support the music.

In order to promote the single, a PV for Melody ~Sounds Real~ was made. The video is pretty simple, featuring ayaka rocking out with her band as well as a scene of her wandering through some gorgeous field. Although there isn’t much going on, it’s that simplicity that works with the song to make it an enoyable watch.

Single Ranking: A

Following her debut single, ayaka continues to have strong songs. Melody ~Sounds Real~ shows that she can do upbeat songs while still showing off her vocals while the B-side allows for ayaka to slow down and take on more of an emotional atmosphere. Both songs make this a very good single, worthy of checking out.

ayaka’s debut single, entitled I Believe, was released on 02.01.06. The title track was used as the theme song for the TBS dorama Rondo.

I Believe is a gorgeous ballad. The song starts off with a very pretty instrumental that evokes emotions within the listener as the piano builds the anticipation for ayaka to come in singing. She does so on the first verse and her vocals are so smooth here and carrying such emotion, the listener falls in love. On the chorus, she shows off a little more vocally as she reaches higher on certain notes and her pronounciation of “I believe myself” is absolutely perfect. The pure instrumetnal section sounds very grandiose, drawing on the emotional qualities of the song so beautifully and once ayaka comes in again, the listener is yet again entranced by the power of her vocals. I Believe is a wonderful ballad that ayaka brings to life with vocals that portray emotion and power.

夢のカケラ is the single’s B-side, taking on an acoustic sound. After the sorrowful tone of the last song, this song takes on a more uplifting feeling that the listener can enjoy from start to finish. ayaka’s vocals in this one are as strong as ever, which makes this another enjoyable song and a nice compliment to the A-side.

In order to promote the single, a PV for I Believe was made. The video is very simple and keeping with the atmosphere of the song, the video features ayaka wandering in the dark outside. She looks very pretty here as the setting, which makes for a visually enjoyable video.

Single Ranking: A

ayaka definitely made a strong debut as I Believe is a fantastic song, fit with an emotional atmosphere and powerful vocals to really catch the listener’s ear. The B-side is another good song that shows another side of ayaka, which makes this single very complete.

ayaka and Kobukuro’s first collaboration single, entitled WINDING ROAD, was released on 02.08.07. The song was used as the Nissan Cube CM song.

WINDING ROAD is an enjoyable upbeat number. The song starts off with ayaka and Kobukuro singing acapella and their voices all carry a naturalness so having the three come together just sounds great. It gets even better when the instrumentation comes in. The boys of Kobukuro start off the first verse and they sound great here with smooth vocals that carry the music along nicely. ayaka also adds her magic to the song by giving power and control as well as emotion all in one. The chorus is nice although a little more instrumental variety would have been nice. The pure instrumental section provides a nice opportunity for all three artists to show off their vocal abilities and they definitely do, ayaka being the person who shines the strongest. Overall, they come together to make a great song and their voices definitely mesh together very well.

In order to promote the single, a PV for WINDING ROAD was made. The video is very simple featuring a scene of three on a rotating platform, each in their own third with a microphone. Although there isn’t much going on, it’s a nice watch.

Single Ranking: A

ayaka and Kobukuro really are the perfect team as their voices all carry a naturalness about them thus putting them together only brings even more magic. The song features a nice upbeat feeling and it allows them to show off vocally. It’s certainly a song that any fan of either ayaka or Kobukuro would love.

ayaka’s 5th single, entitled Jewelry day, was released on 07.04.07. The title track was used as the ending theme for the Japanese movie Last Love.

Jewelry day is a very sweet ballad with beautiful vocals from ayaka. There is a very pretty and intimate instrumental opening that immediately takes the listener’s ear before the first verse begins. She sings “broken, broken my heart” and continues with beautiful vocals that support the simplicity of the music perfectly. During the chorus, ayaka sings with such emotion and the lyrics really come to life. There is a magical feeling that comes through the song’s closing instrumental section, supported only by a few vocalizations from ayaka. Jewelry day is an excellent song, definitely one of ayaka’s best.

The B-side of the single is I’m alone. The tempo sligtly picks up on this one as the guitar serves as another central instrument. On the first verse, ayaka sounds great as there is a certain naturalness to her voice that matches the song’s atmosphere. She brings some great vocals on the chorus as she hits the higher notes with ease. During the pure instrumental section, the music shines and the chorus is re-introduced strongly. I’m alone nicely picks up the tempo to make it a good compliment to Jewelry day.

In order to promote the single, a PV for Jewelry day was made. The video is very simple but there lies its perfection. Scenes include ayaka singing on a stage without anyone in the audience, her at the beach and ayaka riding the bus.

Single Ranking: A

Both Jewelry day and I’m alone make this an enjoyable single. By taking the more simple approach, ayaka’s vocals communicate a naturalness that the listener can enjoy.

ayaka’s 6th single, entitled Why / CLAP & LOVE, was released on 09.05.07. Why was used as the theme song for Crisis Core: Final Fantasy VII while CLAP & LOVE was used as the opening theme for the comedic dorama Jigoku no Sata mo Yome Shidai.

Why is the single’s ballad. The first verse begins the song and ayaka’s vocals help explore a relaxing and somewhat mysterious atmosphere established by the instrumental. It’s the chorus that really shines as she hits her notes fantastically and she sings the title of the song with such beauty. During the pure instrumental section, the guitar shines and is a very nice section of the song. Following is the final chorus, in which ayaka really brings out the vocal power. There is a certain element of magic to this song that really catches the listener’s ear and ayaka’s vocals bring the song

CLAP & LOVE allows ayaka to try out the sounds of rock and she shines strongly here. The song opens up with a cool upbeat rock sound with an addictive beat. The first verse then begins and ayaka’s vocals display power and control as she holds her notes strongly. With powerful vocals and a catchy beat, the chorus really steps out, particularly when she sings the title of the song. Before the final chorus, ayaka does a little vocalizing and really belts out, allowing the listener to feel her power. Closing the song is a few more strong vocalizations with the music there to really end the song.

In order to promote the single, two PVs were made: one for each A-side. On the PV for Why, ayaka rides a train to arrive to her beautiful destination. The scenery is absolutely gorgeous and certainly is eye-catching. The video for CLAP & LOVE is simple as it features ayaka singing in front of speakers as well as various people appearing to clap (which is done repeatedly throughout the song). From the lighting to ayaka’s clthes, there is a darker atmosphere, which nicely fits the song and its rock sound.

Single Ranking: A +

Both Why and CLAP & LOVE are fantastic songs that compliment each other strongly. While Why is a ballad sung with emotion, CLAP & LOVE is a catchy upbeat song taking on the sounds of rock. CLAP & LOVE is one of the best songs in her discography, really catching the listener’s ear. This single is definitely one to listen to.