Review | Lil Happy & FYA’M’ “aoppella!? 4”

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“aoppella!? 4” shows FYA’M’ and Lil Happy improving and exploring new things while delivering top-quality performances one after the other.

Title: aoppella!? 4
Label: Klab
Release date: 16/09/2022
Genre: Acappella

Tracklist:

1-2 - アオペラ敗者復活戦に向けて(drama track)
3 - 道貴家訪問(drama track) 
4-5 - リルハピ、文字通り「復活」!(drama track) 
6 - 敗者復活戦の裏で(drama track) 
7 - KALEIDOSCOPE (Lil Happy)
8 - Voice, Heart, Body & Soul (FYA'M)

Track by track analysis:

7 – KALEIDOSCOPE

Lil Happy brings a melancholic tune to the spotlight with “KALEIDOSCOPE”. 

As such you have a lot of bass to this song, more so than usual, with Tetsuya Kakihara joining Tomoaki Maeno for some bass parts during the verses.

The verses are groovy, focusing a lot on harmonies and canons between Lil Happy’s members. It is easily noticeable how melodic this performance is, showing the members even more in sync than ever. This results in a performance that is gripping right from the start.

The chorus puts Tetsuya Kakihara at center stage, with his vocals blasting bright and high, making chills run down your spine. You’ll find yourself invested in this performance in no time because of that.

Pay a lot of attention to the head voice parts in the chorus as Ryohei Kimura is showing a lot of his range that, up until now, was barely explored in the 2D music projects he is a part of.

Worth mentioning that there are some surprises in this song namely Tomoaki Maeno going for high notes in head voice, Ryota Osaka delivering beautiful legato high notes, and Ryohei Kimura’s surprisingly powerful and high head voice notes.

8 – Voice, Heart, Body & Soul

Wrapping up this CD is FYA’M’’s “Voice, Heart, Body & Soul”. And oh boy, did the best get saved for last!

Thanks to having both beatboxer and bass parts in this group, FYA’M’ is able to basically transform this song into a lo-fi EDM banger. It is unreal and quite impressive how they manage to create such a tune with voice only.

The verses are groovy, riding on top of the washy vocals by Shugo Nakamura and the punchy bassline by Daiki Hamano.

The leads for this song are Takuya Sato and Toshiyuki Toyonaga. Sato does an amazing job as he smoothly performs the addictive chorus with clean high notes and alluring vibrato. Toyonaga adds a unique high pitched, youthful twist to what is, for the most part, a mature performance.

Wataru Urata and Yuki Ono almost go under the radar for this performance, at least for me. When it comes to lines distribution, this song goes for something different than usual. As a result, there is barely any Yuki Ono found in this song – despite the fact that he is lending his talents towards making sure the core of this song is punchy, tight, and flows well.


Final considerations

The aoppella!? franchise has yet to disappoint. Another CD release, another set of awesome songs, further expanding the horizons of each group while exploring different things to their music or even vocal lineups.

This time around Lil Happy went all in for a melodic performance with a slightly more mature vibe than usual. 

“KALEIDOSCOPE” is a stunner with plenty of surprises on the vocal end, namely Ryohei Kimura’s insanely powerful high notes in head voice, something I was not expecting at all but let me tell you, I want to hear more of that in future releases. 

For this song, all members got to showcase their technicality when rising on their vocal ranges and what fans get is a relay of quality vocals on top of a track that is as bouncy and catchy as you can get.

FYA’M’’s “Voice, Heart, Body & Soul” is something that arrived as unexpected. An EDM tune performed in acappella? Crazy but not impossible if this performance can quickly let you know.

From the pounding beat to the washy synths, Daiki Hamano and Shugo Nakamura did it all, creating the perfect EDM tune.

Now, something that was weird to find in this performance was the distribution of the lines, this time around far from being fair to some members. 

The full focus is on Takuya Sato and Toshiyuki Toyonaga’s vocals and besides them, all the other members barely get any time in the spotlight. 

Yuki Ono is a good example of what a weird lines distribution can do to a lineup. He is barely present in this song, at least, noticeably. The same can be said about Wataru Urata that on one occasion does get the spotlight but beyond that, everything is as quick as batting an eye.

While FYA’M’’s “Voice, Heart, Body & Soul” is a fantastic song and in no way the performance was bad, it feels a bit lackluster to have a bit of the depth the group is known for… not being there.

All in all, the aoppella!? franchise impresses yet again. “aoppella!? 4” shows both groups improving and exploring new things while delivering top-quality performances one after the other.


aoppella!? 4” is available for purchase at CDJAPAN.

aoppella!? 4 / aoppella!? (Riruhapi, FYA'M')
aoppella!? (Lil Happy, FYA’M’)
aoppella!? 4 / aoppella!? (Riruhapi, FYA'M')
aoppella!? (Lil Happy, FYA’M’)
aoppella!? 4 / aoppella!? (Riruhapi, FYA'M')
aoppella!? (Lil Happy, FYA’M’)

aoppella!? 4” is available for streaming on Spotify.


Do not support piracy. Remember to support the aoppella!? franchise by streaming via official outlets.

REVIEW OVERVIEW

KALEIDOSCOPE
Voice, Heart, Body & Soul

SUMMARY

Groovier than ever, Lil Happy and FYA'M' deliver a stunning set of songs in "aoppella!? 4". The aoppella!? franchise has yet to disappoint. Another CD release, another set of awesome songs, further expanding the horizons of each group while exploring different things to their music or even vocal lineups. This time around Lil Happy went all in for a melodic performance with a slightly more mature vibe than usual.  FYA’M’’s “Voice, Heart, Body & Soul” is something that arrived as unexpected. An EDM tune performed in acappella? Crazy but not impossible if this performance can quickly let you know. The aoppella!? franchise impresses yet again. “aoppella!? 4” shows both groups improving and exploring new things while delivering top-quality performances one after the other.
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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Groovier than ever, Lil Happy and FYA'M' deliver a stunning set of songs in "aoppella!? 4". The aoppella!? franchise has yet to disappoint. Another CD release, another set of awesome songs, further expanding the horizons of each group while exploring different things to their music or even vocal lineups. This time around Lil Happy went all in for a melodic performance with a slightly more mature vibe than usual.  FYA’M’’s “Voice, Heart, Body & Soul” is something that arrived as unexpected. An EDM tune performed in acappella? Crazy but not impossible if this performance can quickly let you know. The aoppella!? franchise impresses yet again. “aoppella!? 4” shows both groups improving and exploring new things while delivering top-quality performances one after the other.Review | Lil Happy & FYA'M' "aoppella!? 4"