Review | GRANRODEO “Kami mo Hotokemo”

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GRANRODEO pushes the boundaries of creativity and music composition with the epic “Kami mo Hotokemo”.

Regular
Title: カミモホトケモ 
Release date: 12/01/2022
Label: Lantis
Genre: Rock/Chamber Rock

Tracklist:

1 - カミモホトケモ
2 - BEFORE the DAWN
3 - カミモホトケモ (OFF VOCAL)
4 - BEFORE the DAWN (OFF VOCAL)

Track by track analysis:

1 – カミモホトケモ

Kami mo Hotokemo” brings in Chinese influences to the spotlight, with a beautiful melody on the erhu as well as a layer underneath it with guzheng.

The verses are pretty clean, with acoustic guitars leading the way as the drums set a comfortable mid-tempo to this track.

As tension rises to the pre-chorus, electric guitars join in and go low, adding a bit of depth to the instrumental.

Groovy drums take the lead in the chorus, making this song quite addictive and surprisingly danceable.

The guitar work in this song is massive, with the intermissions – between chorus and verses – putting the spotlight on the technical and emotional guitar riffs. The guitar screams in those sections and when the bridge arrives, a slow-paced yet insanely technical guitar solo takes the stage and dazzles.

On the vocal end, KISHOW goes for powerful open notes, some vibrato, and even plays around with crescendos – there’s one really awesome leading up to the chorus – not to mention his trademark rock-solid mid-tones.

2 – BEFORE the DAWN

In an interesting change of tone, GRANRODEO brings a brass-led sound in the epic-rock tune “BEFORE the DAWN”. The build-up in the intro – quite the long intro, 1 minute long – is easily one of the most magic ones in their repertoire.

The way the brass leads the way, slowly increasing the tension, the addition of timpani as the power percussion, dramatic strings, and delicate glockenspiel melodies hints at more than just a rock song with chamber music influences. There is much more to this song yet, if this is your first time listening to it, you’re going to be blown away.

Leading up to the chorus, things quiet down and the stage is set for KISHOW’s vocals to boom and sweep you off the feet.

When the chorus arrives, strings go wild, timpani adds an orchestral touch to the song, electric guitars go emotional and low and you’re left with none other than an epic song.

After the 1st chorus – mind you, the only chorus in this song -, it will sound more like KISHOW is singing on top of a behemoth of a soundtrack song for a fantasy movie. It is grandiose, larger-than-life in its presentation. This is a song that, with KISHOW’s vocals on top, takes itself to the next level, sounding incredibly emotional and engaging.


Final considerations

Pushing the boundaries of their creativity yet again, GRANRODEO releases “Kami mo Hotokemo”, a single that is as beautiful as it is powerful – in different ways.

First off, the title track “Kami mo Hotokemo” brings to the spotlight two of the most beautiful instruments in existence – erhu and guzheng.

While this isn’t necessarily the first time the band has used any of those in their music, it is still a fantastic addition to any of their songs, and seeing how the guitar was, essentially, playing the melody in the intro mid-way through the song, it was nice to see both instruments influence e-ZUKA’s work.

But as much as “Kami mo Hotokemo” impressed, it was completely eclipsed by the quality and epic tone of “BEFORE the DAWN”.

I’ve said it a couple of times before but every time I feel like GRANRODEO has tried it all and there is no way the band can pull off something new… the band pulls off something new. In a way, I’ve come to anticipate that GRANRODEO will, for sure, surprise me – and everyone else – with their b-sides (usually better than their leading tracks).

Epic, fantasy-inspired chamber music rock.

This is what “BEFORE the DAWN” is all about. As such, its composition is completely different from what you’d expect. It counts with a 1-minute long intro, only 1 chorus, and 1 verse + outro. You’re going to be taken to that grandiose, adventurous soundscape and immerse yourself in the carefully crafted instrumental.

This is a song like no other and within the band’s repertoire, this is the very first time embracing a chamber music/orchestral sound in such a way.

Somehow I want to see the band playing this song like with an orchestra. I’m 100% sure it’d blow my mind seeing this song further orchestrated yet still with their rock roots at the core.

In lack of a full-on orchestration, “BEFORE the DAWN” is still an impressive song, easily the best in this single.

All in all, GRANRODEO’s “Kami mo Hotokemo” is yet another unique chapter in the band’s career, one that takes pushes the boundaries of creativity and music composition yet again.


Kami mo Hotokemo” is available for purchase at CDJAPAN.


Kami mo Hotokemo” is available for streaming on Spotify.


Do not support piracy. Remember to support GRANRODEO by streaming via official outlets.

REVIEW OVERVIEW

カミモホトケモ
BEFORE the DAWN

SUMMARY

GRANRODEO’s “Kami mo Hotokemo” is yet another unique chapter in the band’s career, one that takes pushes the boundaries of creativity and music composition yet again. The title track "Kami mo Hotokemo" has a fantastic balance between traditional Eastern instrumentalization - Chinese, in this case - and their rock sound. This a punchy song with fantastic guitar work in the verses, Then the biggest surprise arrives with "BEFORE the DAWN". This epic song has a unique structure. It is as if it is made for a movie soundtrack. It takes you on a journey. It is haunting. I found myself curious about the song during its intro - thinking that this could be a song that could go really heavy as a contrast - but then noticed just how intricate and beautiful the song is while being completely different from everything the band has done before. If you haven't checked this single yet - or it is your first time coming across it - I can't recommend it enough. This is the quality GRANRODEO is known for (plus some more). "Kami mo Hotokemo"is a perfect start of the year for the versatile band.
Vanessa Silva
Vanessa Silvahttps://www.handthatfeedshq.com
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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GRANRODEO’s “Kami mo Hotokemo” is yet another unique chapter in the band’s career, one that takes pushes the boundaries of creativity and music composition yet again. The title track "Kami mo Hotokemo" has a fantastic balance between traditional Eastern instrumentalization - Chinese, in this case - and their rock sound. This a punchy song with fantastic guitar work in the verses, Then the biggest surprise arrives with "BEFORE the DAWN". This epic song has a unique structure. It is as if it is made for a movie soundtrack. It takes you on a journey. It is haunting. I found myself curious about the song during its intro - thinking that this could be a song that could go really heavy as a contrast - but then noticed just how intricate and beautiful the song is while being completely different from everything the band has done before. If you haven't checked this single yet - or it is your first time coming across it - I can't recommend it enough. This is the quality GRANRODEO is known for (plus some more). "Kami mo Hotokemo"is a perfect start of the year for the versatile band. Review | GRANRODEO "Kami mo Hotokemo"