Straight out of smartphone otome/rhythm game “Idolish 7” is MEZZO, unit consisting of KENN and Atsushi Abe. The two seiyuu partner up again for what is an unusual unit following the game’s heavy dance pop driven sound.
Let’s kick off this review.
Single: Koi no Kakera Label: Lantis Release date: 11/05/16 Genre: J-Pop
01.恋のかけら 02.miss you… 03.恋のかけら（OFF VOCAL） 04.miss you…（OFF VOCAL）
Track by track analysis:
Already know to those who have already played the game, “Koi no Kakera” is a mid-tempo track that relies on a more alternative pop sound, bringing to the table strings, acoustic guitars, hi-hat focused drums and a barely audible bass. With all these elements together we’re presented with a text book pop track that could have come straight from an anime opening theme or the sort. Vocally, KENN reminds us once again why we love his voice. With a control that few have, KENN hits low and high notes without sounding off key. On the other side we find Abe, a rare sight in music oriented game titles, lending his slightly higher vocals to the track. With a few mistakes here and there and some key problems when the notes got higher, Abe struggled a bit. The two blend well in this track. As a whole “Koi no Kakera” doesn’t bring anything new or exciting to the table, barely passing as a good track. It’s enjoable to listen to but the listeners will get the feel of having heard it before – of course they haven’t – because this track sounds just like a generic pop song that anyone could sing. 3.5/5
With an acoustic sound where strings and acoustic guitars reign, “miss you…” is a pop ballad ready to impress you. Clearly an upgrade from the previous track, this one focuses more on making KENN and Abe shine without any big, flashing things in the background to distract us. Mid-tempo drums, bass and piano complete the instrumetal piece, in what is the best instrumental piece in this release. Vocally, it’s uncanny as Abe sounds like just like a cross between Takuma Terashima and Kakihara Tetsuya, two seiyuu known for their versatile mid-toned vocals. Showcasing strong high notes, Abe seems like a different person in comparison with his performance in “Koi no Kakera“. We’ve said it many times before, KENN is made for this type of tracks. With his sweet, slightly husky vocals he can make a ballad sound rich and full, adding Abe‘s solid vocals we get an interesting performance. 4.5/5
With two experienced singers on board it’s impressive how come MEZZO sounds a bit generic. With instrumentals that lack inspiration, resorting to the same old text book anime pop song, the group only manages to show what they’re allowed to. A shame since both KENN and Abe are good vocalists whose vocals always take the front stage in whichever projects they are in. The cute, boy next door concept ruins the group’s configuration and ultimately their sound.
In comparison with TRIGGER‘s (consisting of Soma Saito, Wataru Hatano and Takuya Sato – from Idolish 7) sexy, defying sound, MEZZO lack excitement and quality.
“Koi no Kakera” is available for purchase on CDJAPAN for all overseas fans.