Monthly Review: KAGARIBI goes the emotional route, SparQlew and Gakuto Kajiwara shine and more

July 2022 was an emotional month filled with CDs that were meant to tug at your heartstrings. KAGARIBI arrives with a sound that nods at the past but with a loving note on the side, Gakuto Kajiwara delivers a powerful performance in “Irochigai no Itotaba”, SparQlew appears with an awesome retro sound, and more.

The 7th episode of the new video feature on The Hand That Feeds HQ’s YouTube channel is out!

As the name says, Monthly Review is a monthly feature in which I find yet another excuse to talk about male seiyuu music and 2D groups.

This is a feature in which I get on camera covering the most impressive/buzzworthy releases in any given month – and hidden gems that not many people may end up paying attention to -, counting on your participation as well in all 4 corners:

  • Best of the month (3 best/buzzworthy/gems of every given month as picked by me + 3 suggested by THTFHQ readers
  • Monthly Choice (3 CD suggestions by me – regardless of when the CDs were released – and 3 suggestions by THTFHQ readers)
  • Music in the Horizon (a look at next month’s releases – it mixes my and your comments on upcoming releases)
  • Ask Vanessa* (ask me anything about male seiyuu or 2D music)

*Title subject to change, if you have suggestions for a title for this section, do leave those in the comments

This month’s episode is all about the music released in July 2022.

July 2022 was more about emotions than it was about showcasing cool performances or tricky vocal parts. This month was a bit quieter as a result and its overall quality wavered a bit with most 2D music projects not improving much on the work they’d done before.

But let’s talk about the highlights of the month.

HOUND ROAR released “CLOSER” and oh boy, this is an awesome song!

The acid-jazz band distanced itself a bit from funk-rock and, in its stead, went on to explore rock music to deliver one of their best songs. “CLOSER” still has a loungy vibe but now with an interesting contrasting edge coming for the guitars.

Do expect Toshiyuki Toyonaga to deliver a stellar performance (as per usual).


Gakuto Kajiwara is back with his unique brand of semi-acoustic pop-rock music in “Irochigai no Itotaba“.

The single has a consistent sound with Kajiwara focusing on showcasing his emotional range in ways that will impress you.

The title track doesn’t sound like it is featured in an anime series which makes it even more pleasing to listen to. If you are a fan of acoustic pop rock and good, clean vocals, Gakuto Kajiwara has those and more to offer in this single.


SparQlew continues its path in the music industry as a 4-piece group after the departure of Shoya Chiba.

Despite initial worries that the group was going to revert to their original bubbly pop sound, the fact is that “neon” is the perfect follow-up to the flawless mini-album “Daybreak“.

There’s a lot of funk, disco, and citypop-inspired tracks in this CD, showcasing a mature group that can handle almost anything on the vocal end.

If like me, you were reluctant to pick up this CD, there’s no need to worry. “neon” is a strong candidate for album of the year.

The Dear Vocalist franchise continues its 7th CD series, UNLIMITED.

This time around KAGARIBI hopped on stage with Judah (CV: Soma Saito) going for a set of impressively technical performances on the vocal end while showcasing two different sides to the band, as well as of himself.

Long-time fans of KAGARIBI will be pleased to know that “Noroshi” (the title track) is all about an aggressive, loud, and bassy rock sound and those that have been enjoying the character development in the franchise will love “meant to be”, a song that is an open declaration of love. The purest you could get.

These and more thoughts/comments can be found in the almost 1-hour-ish episode that just dropped on the channel and that you can find in this article as well.

Please remember that these episodes are much more interesting with your insights, so do participate when the survey is open on social media. Although only 3 were chosen for each corner (less if there were fewer submissions from you), do know I’ve read them all. I read everything and keep being impressed by your musical sensibility!

THTFHQ’s community is filled with talented individuals, fans of music, and voice acting that geek as hard – or even more – about both things as I do!

Do you want to participate in MONTHLY REVIEW?

This show is a collaborative work between you and me, sharing our love for male seiyuu and 2D music projects so don’t be shy to participate.

And don’t worry about not having perfect English writing or the sort, we all make mistakes and even I am not a native speaker – and typos are really my bread and butter here on the website – so don’t let that stop you from participating, should you want to!

As always, in the 1st week of every month, the survey to participate in next month’s episode will be shared on THTFHQ’s social media (Facebook and Twitter) and on THTFHQ’s YouTube channel‘s community section (make sure to subscribe to not miss the notification, or lurk if you don’t want to subscribe).

You can participate as many times you want, I only ask that you avoid submitting the same answers in the various entries you make in this feature.

The goal is to feature as many CDs as possible, not to talk only about 1 or 2 CDs.

If the links are not working, CLICK HERE to check the video.

For media, PR, and business enquiries, please email me at:

Vanessa Silva
Vanessa Silva
The Hand That Feeds HQ founder, content creator, and music reviewer. Basically, the only person managing everything at The Hand That Feeds HQ. Stumbling upon Mamoru Miyano's "Orpheus" in 2011 was the start of this journey. If music is thought-provoking or deep, you may find her writing almost essays (not limited to, but it happens a lot with Soma Saito's music). She's the producer and host of the male seiyuu-centric podcast, SEIYUU LOUNGE (see Spotify link in this profile).

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