Review | Akito Sakisaka “Down to Zero”

PERFECTION NOISE

Akito Sakisaka arrives with the imposing pop-meets-trap “Down to Zero“, song that adds more depth and flair to NOISE NOVA.

PERFECTION NOISE counts with the dance and vocal unit, NOISE NOVA (Shoya Chiba, Soma Saito, Ryohei Kimura and Kaito Ishikawa).

For more details on this new 2D music project, please refer to The Hand That Feeds HQ’s introductory guide to PERFECT NOISE.

Review

PERFECTION NOISE vol.3 Akito
Title: PERFECTION NOISE Vol.3 向坂秋人
Label: Spica / TEAM Entertainment Inc. 
Release date: 27/01/2021
Genre: Pop / Trap 

Tracklist:

1 - 新人マネージャー
2 - 今の俺じゃダメだから
3 - 息抜きなんて
4 - アニバーサリーが終わったら
5 - 悲劇は突然に
6 - NOISE NOVAの秋人だから
7 - ゼロになれた自分
8 - Down to Zero (solo song)

Track analysis:

8 – Down to Zero

Down to Zero” has quite the old-school sound, channeling a bit of the edgy pop sound in the 00s, bringing guitar riffs into the mix, adding cheeky synth stabs and a deep bass drum-centric beat in the background.

The verses are focused on a tough, urban pop sound in which guitars take center stage, leaving much of the background open for Kaito Ishikawa’s vocals to explore.

The chorus invites trap into the mix, with orchestral hits exploding in the background as a tight beat hits in an imposing way.

I quite enjoy the chorus to this song. It really does channel the classic 00s J-pop sound that I am most familiar with – you know, that time when pop groups thought that sounding tough meant having guitar riffs in their music – and, almost 20 years later, it still works pretty well, of course, with a new coat of paint on top from EDM and trap.

In comparison with Narumi’s sweet R&B in “Deep” and Sena’s enticing and explosive “Turning Point”, Akito’s “Down to Zero is quite the slow-paced song.

This is, of course, a deliberate choice to reflect the character’s attitude or vibe, so nothing unexpected here.

What was unexpected was the throwback j-pop sound in the chorus and how good the song sounded as a whole.

Now, let’s talk a bit about the vocals.

Kaito Ishikawa delivers quite the interesting performance. His singing has improved a lot, I must add, a whole lot since I last heard his singing (2018).

He holds himself pretty well in the verses yet he still sounds like he’s opening his mouth a bit too much to sing notes that do not require that much effort. This may have been a performance that strained his jaw in result of that much effort.

Still, massive improvement (and I can see – hear – him improving even more in future releases) and, in the chorus, he sounds the part, imposing and powerful like expected of Akito Sakisaka’s image.

All in all, “Down to Zero” is an unexpected surprise. Addictive, imposing sound, clean mixing, good vocal performance.

I continue to be entertained by the music released in the PERFECTION NOISE franchise. Their unique sound among 2D groups – blending a wide variety of music genres – makes every single new piece of music coming from NOISE NOVA (and their members) quite unpredictable.

I love this about the franchise and sure hope this will be the way to go in upcoming releases. Unique music, fresh, unexpected performances and a whole lot of good music to enjoy.


PERFECTION NOISE Vol.3 Akito Sakisaka is available for purchase at CDJAPAN.

Perfection Noise / Drama CD (Kaito Ishikawa)
Drama CD (Kaito Ishikawa)
REVIEW OVERVIEW
Down to Zero
The Hand That Feeds HQ founder and music reviewer writing about Japanese music since 2010. Also, the only person managing everything The Hand That Feeds HQ related. In 2011, I stumbled upon Mamoru Miyano's "Orpheus". Since then I have been writing about male seiyuu music. You may find me writing almost essays whenever music is really good (not limited to, but it happens a lot with Soma Saito's music). I also host the male seiyuu-centric podcast, SEIYUU LOUNGE (see Spotify link in this profile).

1 COMMENT

Comment