Review | MEDICODE “MEDICODE”

MEDICODE

MEDICODE’s “MEDICODE” is an absolute gem that is not talked about enough, not recognized enough nor loved enough.

MEDICODE consists of Soma Saito (vocals), Yuichiro Umehara, Takuya Eguchi, and Yoshitaka Yamaya. The band is part of the FlyMe Project created by Exit Tunes and Xarts, bringing together seiyuu and real visual-kei artists.

The band debuted in 2015 and is on hiatus since 2017.

Tempo estimado de leitura: 5 minutos


MEDICODE Carma
Title: MEDICODE
Label: PONY CANYON / Exit Tunes
Release date: 01/04/2015
Genre: Visual-kei Rock

Tracklist:

1 - CARMA
2 - HOLLOW
3 - CARMA -instrumental-
4 - HOLLOW -instrumental-
5 - 今日の事、いつも起こる事 [DRAMA TRACK]
6 - 想い出す事、想い続ける事  [DRAMA TRACK]
7 - MEDICODEの日常① [DRAMA TRACK]
8 - MEDICODEの日常② [DRAMA TRACK]

Track by track analysis:

1 – CARMA

Aggressive guitar riffs paint a bleak and dark soundscape for “CARMA”. The verses are fast paced, with double-bass drums setting an intense tone to it.

The bassline is fast as thunder and punchy as hell, driving the song forward with a lot of power.

Dynamics change in the chorus, as the band’s sound gets cleaner and guitars scream in the background.

The bridge is dark and glitchy, with Soma Saito delivering a haunting performance in this section doing something never before done by him back in 2015: screamo.

He goes all out in those low, aggressive screams and shouts, seamlessly switching to his clean singing in the chorus. It is worth noting that he brought Kansai’s quirky rolled “Rs” to his performance, taking a lot of inspiration from visual-kei rock singers such as Ruki (the GazettE).

Masterful performance that would end up being iconic for Soma Saito, making people look at him as quite the impressive singer that fully embraced visual-kei and rolled with a flair and confidence that made it look second nature to him.

2 – HOLLOW

Wrapping up this single is “HOLLOW”, song that brings a lot of power to the spotlight.

The verses count with shredding guitar riffs, a pounding a crunchy bassline and tricky, splashy drums.

The build up to this track is filled with tension, exploding into a fast-paced, intense chorus in which Soma Saito goes ballistic with the theatricality and drama in his performance.

His mid-tones are powerful throughout and his long notes quite impressive, showcasing a massive control over his vocals and stamina.


Final considerations

What a journey back to the past this review was!

MEDICODE’s “MEDICODE” is an absolute gem that is not talked about enough, not recognized enough nor loved enough.

The sheer quality in this genuine take on visual-kei rock music, courtesy of LM.C’s Aiji in “CARMA” and NIGHTMARE’s Sakito in “HOLLOW”, plus Soma Saito’s jaw-droppingly impressive performance make it an instant recommendation of mine whenever people ask me about Saito’s wide vocal range and versatility or about good visual-kei music performed by male seiyuu.

CARMA” is a banger from start to finish. Fast-paced, aggressive and insanely challenging on the vocal end, it shines as the best song in this CD.

HOLLOW” is darker in tone but softer in its approach to rock.

The instrumental booming in the back of Soma Saito’s powerful vocals, at times, trading places with him for the spotlight, is such a unique touch to the track. Also, Sakito’s guitar solo is the good stuff that makes you fall in love with visual-kei rock time and time again.

On the vocal end, this was a pioneering performance by Soma Saito.

Up until his performances in this album, no other male seiyuu had tackled visual-kei rock much less pull off a genuine performance embracing all the quirks and details that entails it.

It would also end up being the performance that would put eyes and ears on him as a singer, as he was showcasing a wide vocal range and a versatility that few seiyuu had at that time.

MEDICODE’s self-titled CD was released in 2015 and, somehow, it kept getting forgotten in my pile of CDs to review despite having already listened to it plenty of times – more than advised. So, note that contrary to all reviews on this website, this review doesn’t arrive as a fresh take of mine on a release that I didn’t know anything about up until now.

I want to put the spotlight on this band and the awesome project that is the FlyME Project and thus, this review is here.

Much has changed for the franchise since the release of this CD or 2017’s “GABBY”.

The FlyME Project franchise is on a long hiatus, with no communication from both PONY CANYON and EXIT TUNES about its future.

For all that it’s worth, I sure hope that, if you didn’t know about the project, you’re now curious and want to check it out, and if you’re already a fan, that you got a different analysis on it and get to experience once again the quality it has.


MEDICODE” is available for purchase at CDJAPAN.

SUMMARY

MEDICODE’s “MEDICODE” is an absolute gem that is not talked about enough, not recognized enough nor loved enough. The sheer quality in this genuine take on visual-kei rock music, courtesy of LM.C’s Aiji in “CARMA” and NIGHTMARE’s Sakito in “HOLLOW”, plus Soma Saito’s jaw-droppingly impressive performance make it an instant recommendation of mine whenever people ask me about Saito’s wide vocal range and versatility or about good visual-kei music performed by male seiyuu.

REVIEW OVERVIEW

CARMA
HOLLOW
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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