Review | HOUND ROAR “CLOSER”

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HOUND ROAR brings a unique twist to their acid-jazz sound, bringing a more aggressive edge that pushes the band to new limits.

HOUND ROAR is a rock band fronted by HIBIKI (CV: Toshiyuki Toyonaga), with guitarist SHOMA (CV: Ryohei Kimura), bassist TOYA (CV: Hikaru Midorikawa), keyboardist SHION (CV: Yuichiro Umehara), and drummer SOGO (CV: Takashi Kondo).


Title: DIG-ROCK HOUND ROAR Vol.2
Label: TEAM Entertainment Inc. 
Release date: 27/07/2022 
Genre: Rock/Jazz-rocck

Tracklist:

1 - 些細なはじまり
2 - 隠しきれない心
3 - 無責任な親切
4 - ぜったいに認めない
5 - 切なる願いの叶う場所
6 - CLOSER [NEW SONG]
7 - 逃げようのないルーツ

Track analysis:

6 – CLOSER

HOUND ROAR changed their sound a bit for “CLOSER“, bringing to the spotlight an urgent and dirty guitar work in the intro instead of the usually funky style the band has. It almost sounds like a riff you’d bring to a face-off in the far west.

This difference in approach on the guitars adds a nice contrast to the acid-jazz going on in the punchy bassline, rhodes piano melodies, and irregular, snary drums. The verses are groovy and with a surprisingly heavy twist to them, as those guitars are relentless.

The vocals are muffled for the first half of the verses, with the rhodes piano being more prominent, but clarity soon takes over, bringing Toshiyuki Toyonaga’s vocals to the spotlight with perfect sound levels. The punchy bassline goes in tandem with the rhodes piano, adding a lot of depth while exploring the soundscape around the listener.

The chorus is also in a different style than HOUND ROAR’s trademark sound up until now. It goes loud and intense. Emotions are all over the place yet, as violence appears through the guitars, a cool, calm, and collected edge from the fancy rhodes piano is a constant presence, making itself known at all times.

The drums shift from jazz to rock style of playing being hard-hitting and fairly simple in comparison to what HOUND ROAR has used us to.

So far, so good. HOUND ROAR brings a unique twist to their acid-jazz sound, this time around putting funk on the side in favor of more rock, a more aggressive edge that pushes all the band to new limits.

On the vocal end, regardless if it is quiet or loud parts, technical or just plain clean singing, Toshiyuki Toyonaga shuffles between those in such a smooth way that you won’t even notice. The subtle rises in tone, the subtle details in his delivery, especially when it comes to his emotional range, everything was carefully delivered with the highest quality possible – as expected – by Toyonaga.

As it is, HOUND ROAR’s “CLOSER” appears as a refreshing entry in the band’s repertoire, bringing a bit of rock and urgency into the band’s elegant acid-jazz sound.


DIG-ROCK HOUND ROAR Vol.2” is available for purchase at CDJAPAN.

REVIEW OVERVIEW

CLOSER

SUMMARY

HOUND ROAR’s “CLOSER” appears as a refreshing entry in the band’s repertoire, bringing a bit of rock and urgency into the band’s elegant acid-jazz sound. Regardless if it is quiet or loud parts, technical or just plain clean singing, Toshiyuki Toyonaga shuffles between those in such a smooth way that you won’t even notice. The subtle rises in tone, the subtle details in his delivery, especially when it comes to his emotional range, everything was carefully delivered with the highest quality possible - as expected - by Toyonaga. HOUND ROAR brings a unique twist to their acid-jazz sound, this time around putting funk on the side in favor of more rock, a more aggressive edge that pushes all the band to new limits. Stellar entry in the band's repertoire.
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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HOUND ROAR’s “CLOSER” appears as a refreshing entry in the band’s repertoire, bringing a bit of rock and urgency into the band’s elegant acid-jazz sound. Regardless if it is quiet or loud parts, technical or just plain clean singing, Toshiyuki Toyonaga shuffles between those in such a smooth way that you won’t even notice. The subtle rises in tone, the subtle details in his delivery, especially when it comes to his emotional range, everything was carefully delivered with the highest quality possible - as expected - by Toyonaga. HOUND ROAR brings a unique twist to their acid-jazz sound, this time around putting funk on the side in favor of more rock, a more aggressive edge that pushes all the band to new limits. Stellar entry in the band's repertoire. Review | HOUND ROAR "CLOSER"