Introduction for TRICK
This is not a love song
Bling Bling Bling (feat. AK-69)
JUST THE WAY YOU ARE
Ai no Kotoba
Venus (Bonus Track)
Songs in bold are previously released singles. Songs in blue (with a link) have already been reviewed. Those songs will, however, be reviewed in context of the album once more.
TRICK is Koda Kumi’s seventh album, released on January 28th, 2009. It reached #1 on Oricon. I wonder if she knows the “fitting” connotation to the title of her album…
INTRODUCTION FOR TRICK is meant to blow your brains out so that you don’t realize all the mistakes that are made after the first three tracks of this album. It’s a powerful, aggressive track, and I’m sort of in the middle about this track because it’s catchy but all the power put into the beats tends to ruin the whole.
The transition from INTRODUCTION FOR TRICK to TABOO is a little less than smooth, although that’s easy to forget considering this is the hottest song of 2008 and one of the best Koda Kumi songs ever. It’s infectious, entrancing, and Koda’s vocal performance is quite amazing. Along with the previous track and the next track, TABOO‘s purpose at the beginning of the album is to overwhelm you so much that you’ll have a stroke which will have serious repercussions on your musical taste and you won’t notice the major blemishes other tracks do to this album.
While I wasn’t too fond of it when I first heard it, the cuteness and just the plain catchiness of the chorus have made me love show girl. Somewhat of a self-parody, show girl is nothing particularly new, but Koda Kumi performs very well on it. The chorus sounds glamorous and the verses seem to highlight the personal life or the mistakes stars sometimes make (amniotic fluid, anyone?). And the line bounce me and dance me makes me laugh.
Before we get to another great song which is supposed to erase the bad stuff on this album, Koda serves us two distasteful ballads, the first being Your Love. Compared to the next one, Your Love is absolutely nothing original and there’s no emotion in it, which makes this song a complete flop.
stay with me‘s only positive attribute would be the warm feeling I get from it. Otherwise, as I explained in my review of the single, I think that Koda really doesn’t control her voice very well in this song because it ends up sounding too powerful and sort of overpowers the beauty of an otherwise perfectly average ballad.
So, now we’re back to the good songs. This is not a love song definitely isn’t a love song with its powerful beats and its aggressive character. It still bears the Kuu sexiness, although I like the fact that she doesn’t drive it too far. It’s a really addictive song that’s definitely worth the time; even though it’s under three and a half minutes.
Driving is the best album song, by far. While the beginning didn’t exactly turn me on, the chorus blew me away. I don’t know exactly what it is, but I suppose it’s the fun atmosphere and the adventure of the chorus that makes me like this song, besides the fact that it’s absolutely and completely amazing.
Ugh. Bling Bling Bling pisses me off. Musically, it’s worth absolutely nothing. There are barely any instruments, instead there are confusing lines of synth in the very back, and really out-of-place R&B beats. I guess you could say that this song is rap; and I loathe rap.
I’ve gotten over my gripes with That Ain’t Cool and I can now enjoy the song a lot more. The verses still annoy me a little bit, but the chorus is quite amusing. I just think that Koda’s lines sound really bad.
We get another pretty hardcore track this time, Hurry Up!, which features guitars and reminds me a lot of some of the punk stuff we have in North America during the verses. But don’t get me wrong; I may like punk and pop-rock, I still think this song is a blemish to the face of the album.
I don’t know about placing Hurry Up! before Moon Crying, which is probably the only ballad I can actually listen to without dying of boredom before the end of the song. I guess the only excuse for its placement would be the next song.
The second promotional track on this album, JUST THE WAY YOU ARE, is quite good, and second only to Driving. The strings and the R&B beats create an interesting texture, and Koda’s vocals are quite nice.
Joyful is way too… well, joyful, for me to like it. The guitars are OK, but the feel of this song just doesn’t catch me. It sounds like one of the better H!P pop songs, but because Koda Kumi is a the queen of prostitutes and not the queen of H!P, I can’t exactly call this song “good”.
Ai no Kotoba (words of love) closes the album in a bad way. It may be a ballad, but (I’m not going to go through the same routine again, you know how I feel about Koda ballads). It’s acceptable as a closing song, but I think she could’ve done better.
Koda Kumi’s cover of Venus is quite good… until she says “venus”. Beside the fact her Engrish makes this song a joke, I think she did quite well for the overall presentation of the song and she’s got the right tone for it.
Alright, TRICK was better than Kingdom… but that wasn’t that hard a feat, was it? Frankly, this album has too many flaws for it to be enjoyable, despite the few excellent songs that were here and there. She really has to deal with her ballads, because they’re a bad joke, and hurt the ranking of her album. There are three major blemishes to this album: Your Love, the lame ballad which killed me, Bling Bling Bling, the horrible rap song, and finally Joyful, which was too joyful. The album had its good songs, I won’t deny it; it’s just that they’re overshadowed by all of the bad filler tracks. It’s a mind-numbingly boring album in the overall, and I’m quite disappointed.