Review | EROSION “What is mine”

EROSION

CARNELIAN BLOOD‘s 5-vocal rock band, EROSION showcases their muscular brand of rock in their first album “What is mine”.

CARNELIAN BLOOD is a mixed media – voice comics, music, etc – project created by Rejet. EROSION stems from the franchise as its representative group, a rock band with 5 vocals.

EROSION‘s lineup includes leader Shoya Chiba, Ryota Suzuki, Arthur Lounsbery, Toshiyuki Toyonaga, and Yuya Hirose.

Interviews with the band’s leader, Shoya Chiba, and band members Arthur Lounsbery, Ryota Suzuki, Yuya Hirose, and Toshiyuki Toyonaga are available to watch on CARNELIAN BLOOD’s official YouTube channel.


Regular edition
Title: What is mine
Label: Rejet
Release date: 30/06/2021
Genre: Rock

Tracklist:

1 - What is mine [NEW SONG]
2 - Vigrante
3 - From a Spicy Peak
4 - Underdogs
5 - Lighthouse
6 - Aspiration
7 - The Oath
8 - RAD HEAD
9 - Get Out!!!!!
10 - Sha’ming
11 - Secret Track (drama track)

A note: Only the Regular edition was reviewed.

Track by track analysis:

1 – What is mine

Electronica takes the forefront for “What is mine”, song that explores new territory for EROSION. The intro is intense with synths creating a unique, distant soundscape however, things change drastically from that point on.

The verses are split into 2 parts with melancholic guitar riffs playing in a devoid soundscape for the very first part whereas the 2nd part leading up to the pre-chorus is more intense, bringing to the spotlight drum and bass.

And in the good fashion of rock with a drum and bass beat at its core, “What is mine” has an electrifying chorus with a massive focus on the bass sound and seesaw synths in the background.

With an instrumental this refreshing for the band, you can expect the vocals to also go the same route, showcasing different dynamics and putting aside their usual “aggression” and, instead, favoring “power” in their delivery, matching the song’s intensity.

This is a performance in which there is no specific member in the spotlight, all 5 members have equal lines and importance in this performance, making “What is mine”, once again, a pretty unique song in their repertoire.

2 – Vigilante

[As previously reviewed]

Deep, wobbly synths lead the way for “Vigilante”. In a minimalistic fashion, the instrumental creates a dreamy soundscape yet with a slightly uncomfortable twist to it.

Midway through, the song introduces a minimal bass drum beat, adding some bounce to this short track, as well as glitchy synths to wrap up cleanly.

Due to the simplicity of the instrumental, there is a clear stage for the vocals to shine in. You can hear all vocals really clean, even their harmonies in falsetto right before the end of the track.

Given how this is used as an intro track in “From a Spicy Peak” you can consider that, within this album, it serves as the opening to the “first act” in this album. It’s a fairly intriguing opening.

3 – From a Spicy Peak

[As previously reviewed]

“Vigilante” is followed by the hard-hitting rock track, From a Spicy Peak.

Overdriven guitar riffs, hard-hitting drums, and a thunderous bass line shape this track into one of the hardest-hitting rock songs released this year by a 2D group.

The verses have a bit of that characteristically D’espairs Ray sound, something that I really enjoy. It’s that distortion in the guitars plus those mute notes that gives a gritty and eerie vibe to this track which I thoroughly enjoy.

There are obvious nods to industrial rock in From a Spicy Peak, although the song doesn’t end up fully embracing that in the end.

The chorus is an absolute banger.

It is pretty impressive how EROSION managed to go this deep and dark with their sound while they are harmonizing in the chorus – that contrast with the song’s vibe is actually pretty cool.

At the same time, the fact that the song is insanely slow-paced and hard-hitting makes every beat and hit sink in much deeper into you which, in my books, is something that I enjoy in rock music. Also, props for that mad guitar riff in the bridge.

Vocals-wise, EROSION was all in to deliver an impressive performance both as a group as well as in their individual parts. They pretty much threw it out of the park with a powerful performance.

4 – Underdogs

[As previously reviewed, rating revised]

Underdogs” gives off those nostalgic 90s and 00s nu-metal vibes by bringing turntablism to the table. Although this isn’t a full-time feature – only being used in the verses, it gives a unique flair to this rock track emulating, in a way, Linkin Park.

The tone for this track is less gritty and darker but the sound is more intense in contrast. The verses deliver high-octane guitar riffs, screamo courtesy of Shoya Chiba, and a few glitchy synths into the mix.

The verses flow well but I feel like, after such intense verses, the chorus is lackluster, sounding pretty generic, pretty close to sounding like an idol song.

As far as vocals go, EROSION brought their aces to this track, with all members having equal distribution of lines, being able to showcase their talents and quality. Solid performance but clearly weaker in comparison with From a Spicy Peak.

5 – Lighthouse

[As previously reviewed]

Lighthouse” is one of those intro/brief songs by EROSION that I actually wish were longer (or, at least, a full-size song).

This song has a stripped-down instrumental for the most part, kicking off with melancholic acoustic guitar riffs, slowly setting the stage for the emotional performance waiting for you.

There is a somber tone going on however, it only is fleshed out as the song transitions from acoustic to electric, bringing in live drums, a slow and deep bassline, and emotional electric guitar riffs.

Feelings go by in a flash, leaving behind a trail of melancholy and, in a way, sadness. There’s definitely some of it underlying this song.

The vocals match those emotions with all members bringing a slightly breathy performance with plenty of vibrato on top.

When it comes the time for the group to work together in the chorus, they more than deliver an impressive performance. While in unison, you can hear their voices loud and clear. It’s something rather different in comparison to some of the songs in EROSION’s repertoire.

6 – Aspiration

[As previously reviewed, rating revised]

EROSION goes a calmer, easier listening route for Aspiration. The track kicks off with a slow-paced beat and intermittent, muffled guitar riffs.

The dynamics change when the song progresses to the 1st verse, introducing a groovy bass line, fast-paced electric guitar riffs, and hi-hat-driven drums, mixing live with samples to enhance some parts of the mix.

Also adding a danceable touch to the track are synths, being pretty big in the intro and the chorus.

On the vocals end, EROSION count with a set of rock-solid solo performances but a frustrating group performance.

Although Shoya Chiba is expected to be the main vocal for the group – as the leader -, this song is easily Toshiyuki Toyonaga’s, completely stealing the spotlight from everyone else in what is a stellar performance.

As a band, EROSION lacked power and resorted to a good old, effortless 2D idol group ensemble type of performance, almost erasing the awesome work that each member did in their solo parts.

All in all, Aspiration is a solid track but way too comfortable and pop-focused, and synth-oriented to be called a rock track.

7 – The Oath

[As previously reviewed]

Things get darker for The Oath. This song goes the dramatic route, with delicate piano melodies painting the canvas of this emotional song.

Acoustic guitars and strings are pivotal to fleshing out this rock ballad into a powerful piece.

Slow-paced, snare-driven drums and a barely noticeable bass cover the background, adding depth to this The Oath.

Strings soar in the chorus adding a tragic touch to the track and, although this track is not a full-on power ballad, it certainly is a softer take on the genre and done in a pretty tasteful way.

On the vocals end, EROSION count with their best performance in this single.

Yuya Hirose is at the center of this track, leading everyone with his delicate, high-toned, breathy vocals. But let’s not forget the rest of the band as they go for a lyrical performance, suitable for this type of dramatic rock ballad.

When The Oath comes to a close you’ll only want one thing: to hit the replay button.

8 – RAD HEAD

[As previously reviewed]

Pounding drums, a reverberating bassline, shredding guitar riffs blend with minimalistic electronica, with a slow-paced piano + sampled drums part joining in.

I love the instrumentalization in the pre-chorus, with that quiet piano section adding a unique and pretty exquisite melodic touch to RAD HEAD.

And what about this chorus? RAD HEAD goes loud into headbanging territory, with dark, low guitar riffs, double-bass drums, and a massive bassline shaping this track into one of EROSION’s best songs to date.

On the vocal end, EROSION doesn’t shy away from delivering a powerful and intimidating performance that mixes rough, edgy singing with rap sections.

That, alongside the song’s existent electronica + turntablism touches flows pretty well. Now, comes the chorus and they don’t spare anyone with their groovy, intense performance.

9 – Get Out!!!!!

[As previously reviewed]

Funky guitar riffs and dirty electronica lead the way for Get Out!!!!!.

The song has an obvious duality, with the verses shifting between intense rock, groovy melodies, and slow-paced electronica as the members take turns to deliver their piece of mind in his song.

While this may not sound well when you read my description (hard to describe these abrupt mood swings), these shifts in intensity make the song a blast to listen to. It’s seriously addictive strangely danceable.

The chorus is overdriven and exciting, being the perfect background to EROSION’s powerful vocals.

The vocals are groovy and melodic in the verses, being incredibly passionate in the chorus. The harmonies flow well, adding quality to the release.

There’s also a brief rap section in which all members take turns, adding fancy touches to their overall performance.

Certified banger.

10 – Sha’ming

[As previously reviewed]

Sham’ing wraps up this release with a lot of drama. Pizzicato strings and a delicate piano melody paint a unique soundscape.

In a strange change of events, EROSION ended up performing a dance track that blends EDM with classical music.

I don’t know if it’s just me but while the verses flow well and are really fancy, the chorus sounds too crowded, and honestly, it is difficult for the vocals to rise above the loud strings that share the center stage with them.

The mixing in this song sounds clumsy in the chorus.

The vocals are energetic and melodic, adding a good amount of power and quality to this song.


Final considerations

EROSION’s “What is mineis the perfect way to wrap up the franchise’s 1st season of CD releases at the same that it is the perfect way to showcase their muscular rock sound.

The band has been, since day 1, showcasing awesome chemistry, a natural sense to perform rock music, and a lot of talent, with all members having equal power and technique while being able to lead the songs themselves without an issue.

EROSION’s repertoire is filled with absolute rock bangers starting from the aggressive nu-metal-inspired “RAD HEAD” and “From a Spicy Peak” to rock anthems like in “Underdogs” and “Aspiration”.

The band also has a lot of versatility, bringing electro-rock or pure electronica to the spotlight with “Sham’ing” and “Aspiration” being perfect examples of that.

The new song “What is mine” introduces some spice in EROSION’s repertoire, bringing in drum and bass to their already intense and powerful sound. This was an incredibly solid first attempt at bringing this type of sound to their music however, in comparison to the other songs on this album, it pales a bit. Still, pretty enjoyable and perhaps a sign that the band may be introducing more electronica into their aggressive brand of rock.

As far as vocals go, EROSION has a cohesive lineup that has a lot of depth and technique at its core.

Shoya Chiba is the face and leader of the band, leading their performances with a mix of tenor and faux baritone vocals.

He always brings something extra to his performances with EROSION, being able to bring a lot of emotion to his performances, rap fast and clean, perform screamo, and overall not being afraid to go wild with his rocking performances. In a way, you can tell that he is in his element, he’s genuinely enjoying the music he’s performing.

Ryota Suzuki was a big surprise for many following this project, especially given how he had never showcased his singing talents. He ended up being the wild card in the band, bringing a lot of energy, power, and attitude to his performances, completely embracing rock music and his role within the band.

Arthur Lounsbery has grown a lot on me exactly due to his performances with EROSION. His mid-toned vocals carry a lot of emotion, he’s effortlessly charismatic in his performances and, just like Chiba, seems like he is in his element.

Knowing how Lounsbery is actually pretty fond of heavy rock music (Nordic metal included!), having him in the band is a massive plus as he brings a dynamic, quality, and intensity to every single performance of his. You can count on him for consistency and versatility on all fronts.

Yuya Hirose is pretty unique as a singer. His high-toned tenor vocals are one-of-a-kind which opens the doors for the band to dive a bit deeper into emotional territory in which Hirose sounds the most comfortable.

While he may not stand out as much as the powerful vocals of Chiba, Suzuki, and Lounsbery (the 3 of them are basically in charge of adding that robust and deep delivery to EROSION’s performances), the band can count on him to have a keen ear for his performances, harmonizing flawlessly with everyone, adding a contrasting bit of beauty and fragility to their music and, if given the opportunity to lead the way, he knows how to be charismatic and consistent.

And Toshiyuki Toyonaga does everything for this band. You need him as a powerful tenor, he can tap into faux baritone and wreak havoc in EROSION’s performances; you need him more emotional, he’ll bring in whispery, delicate vocals with plenty of vibrato and falsetto going on.

Harmonizations are one of his strengths with Toyonaga serving both as the core of the band as well as their most valuable asset, the chameleon fits any music genre and vocal direction that is given to him.

As a band, the 5 members bring their strengths and cover perfectly for their weaknesses, leading to a set of outstanding performances packing a lot of power and emotion, no beats missed, no underwhelming vocal performances. Only sheer quality and technique on full display.

How fast this band “gelled” together and started to showcase chemistry is something that impresses me. While they didn’t start off weakly – actually, “From a Spicy Peak” is rock solid -, they started to sound like they were paying better attention to each others’ vocals around “Aspiration” and since then, the band is in perfect harmony.

As it is, “What is mine” is an exciting release by the 2D/3D 5-vocal rock band.

A confident display of technique – individually and collectively -, quality and charisma while fully embracing a unique, edgy rock sound that you can’t find in any other 2D rock band currently active in the industry.


What is mine is available for purchase at CDJAPAN.

"EROSION" 1st ALBUM from CARNELIAN BLOOD "What is mine" / EROSION (Shoya Chiba, Lounsbery Arthur, Yuya Hirose, Ryota Suzuki, Toshiyuki Toyonaga)
EROSION (Shoya Chiba, Lounsbery Arthur, Yuya Hirose, Ryota Suzuki, Toshiyuki Toyonaga)
"EROSION" 1st ALBUM from CARNELIAN BLOOD "What is mine" / EROSION (Shoya Chiba, Lounsbery Arthur, Yuya Hirose, Ryota Suzuki, Toshiyuki Toyonaga)
EROSION (Shoya Chiba, Lounsbery Arthur, Yuya Hirose, Ryota Suzuki, Toshiyuki Toyonaga)
"EROSION" 1st ALBUM from CARNELIAN BLOOD "What is mine" / EROSION (Shoya Chiba, Lounsbery Arthur, Yuya Hirose, Ryota Suzuki, Toshiyuki Toyonaga)
EROSION (Shoya Chiba, Lounsbery Arthur, Yuya Hirose, Ryota Suzuki, Toshiyuki Toyonaga)

SUMMARY

If you haven’t checked the band and this is actually your first time, EROSION’s “What is mine” is the perfect release to get to grips with the band’s sound, chemistry, and technique. The band stands out as one of the most exciting currently active in the 2D music industry. Their sound is unique and aggressive. There are plenty of clever ideas going on in both the instrumentals and performances. Screamo has found its place in 2D rock music with EROSION. Although still a minimal feature, for fans of the genre, especially those that love to find rock frontmen giving their all for those deep, violent performances, you have a bit of screamo going on in here, however, only courtesy of Shoya Chiba. The band has a lot of depth on the vocals with Shoya Chiba, Ryota Suzuki, Arthur Lounsbery, Yuya Hirose, and Toshiyuki Toyonaga giving life to EROSION’s performances in a way that make fans of good voices (and talented singers among seiyuu) all the more excited about them and their music. And let’s not forget that they have taken the jump at being a 3D rock band with at least 4 music videos in which they appear as their characters, giving a different twist to their rocking tunes while showcasing that they can appear on camera and make an even bigger impact than their 2D counterparts. EROSION’s “What is mine” is a complete album. A must-listen for fans of heavy rock music with hints of nu-metal and some electronica on top. It is the perfect introduction to the band and the CARNELIAN BLOOD franchise itself.

REVIEW OVERVIEW

What is mine
Vigilante
From a Spicy Peak
Underdogs
Lighthouse
Aspiration
The Oath
RAD HEAD
Get Out!!!!!
Sha’ming
Vanessa Silvahttps://www.handthatfeedshq.com
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).

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