Review | Soshi and Ryota “Neo X Lied Series vol.3”

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SOARA’s Soshi and Growth’s Ryota deliver a unique performance in the unpredictable rock tune “Black & White”.

Title: ALIVE「Neo X Lied」Series vol.3
Label: Tsukipro/Movic 
Release date: 25/02/2022
Genre: Rock

Tracklist:

1 - ドラマ「絶妙な距離感」 
2 - ドラマ「大雑把Cookie & 繊細Tea」 
3 - ドラマ「悪くない」 
4 - Black & White 
5 - Black & White -off vocal-

Track analysis:

4 – Black & White

Black & White” kicks off with a massively groovy bassline, adding a lot of bounce to this tune. The verses ride on a comfortable mid-tempo in which drums lead the way comfortably while the guitar adds a playful edge to it.

The pre-chorus is clean, arriving as a surprise, especially after the verses were all about those unstoppable dirty guitar riffs and polyphonic synths melodies.

The chorus is surprisingly fast-paced, putting those awesome and fast-paced piano runs to good use while strings join in alongside the synths, giving a bit of depth to an instrumental that is primarily bass-centric.

Following up the chorus is an unexpected intermission, leaving the bassline. Synths and overdriven guitars create a unique stage ready for the 2nd verse.

In a way, this song vaguely gives off SolidS’ vibes from its urgency even down to how unpredictable some parts are within it.

The bridge tones things down on the instrumental side, at least for the very first half of it. Then, things get jazzier with a playful piano melody adding color to the instrumental.

And this time around, for the second pre-chorus, strings take over, adding a layer of beauty to this song. Slowly, you start noticing that this song has more depth than it appeared to have. Still, on a first listen, it’s quite possible that you’ll be all over the groovy bassline or even the delicate strings + piano combo.

In this instrumental, you find, however, subdued, elements that represent both groups represented by Soshi (SOARA) and Ryota (Growth).

The excitement and speed in the rock instrumental capture SOARA’s trademark sound whereas those beautiful, delicate piano and strings combo nod at Growth’s sound – although a bit simpler in comparison to their usual sound.

On the vocal end, Makoto Furukawa and Daiki Yamashita prove to be a duo without any flaws.

Both cover a wide vocal range and had the potential to put it to good use however their performance was more conventional than I anticipated.

For this song, the focus was on making it so that Furukawa and Yamashita were comfortable in their mid-tones with a couple of trips up their range in the chorus and with a beautiful crescendo later on into the song.

All in all, a blend of SOARA and Growth gave way to a distinct groovy song with plenty of unpredictable parts and two rock-solid performances that will make you wish we had gotten a bit more from them.


ALIVE「Neo X Lied」Series vol.3 is available for purchase at CDJAPAN.

Alive "Neo X Lied" / Soshi Kagurazaka (Makoto Furukawa), Ryota Sakuraba (Daiki Yamashita)
Soshi Kagurazaka (Makoto Furukawa), Ryota Sakuraba (Daiki Yamashita)

REVIEW OVERVIEW

Black & White

SUMMARY

Soshi and Ryota teamed up for "Black & White", song that captures the essence of SOARA and Growth's sound while bringing forth a rock sound that is uncannily similar to that of SolidS'. Unpredictability is key in making this song stand out more so than the performances themselves. Yes, although this lineup on the vocal end is godly - Makoto Furukawa and Daiki Yamashita - I feel like it was underused, being left in a completely comfortable performance that tapped very briefly into the higher vocal range of both singers. Seeing the potential on the vocal end - basically, two of the best singers in the Tsukipro franchise - and then listening to the song left me wanting more or something different, more technical. In a way, their performances were pretty simple. While the instrumental captured each group's sound, the vocals didn't have anything distinct from both groups. This is, of course, a detail I believe would have made this song flawless to me. But the performance as it is stands out. All in all, "Black & White" blends fairly well exciting rock with the beauty of lyrical music however with a performance that will leave you wanting more (or something else).
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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Soshi and Ryota teamed up for "Black & White", song that captures the essence of SOARA and Growth's sound while bringing forth a rock sound that is uncannily similar to that of SolidS'. Unpredictability is key in making this song stand out more so than the performances themselves. Yes, although this lineup on the vocal end is godly - Makoto Furukawa and Daiki Yamashita - I feel like it was underused, being left in a completely comfortable performance that tapped very briefly into the higher vocal range of both singers. Seeing the potential on the vocal end - basically, two of the best singers in the Tsukipro franchise - and then listening to the song left me wanting more or something different, more technical. In a way, their performances were pretty simple. While the instrumental captured each group's sound, the vocals didn't have anything distinct from both groups. This is, of course, a detail I believe would have made this song flawless to me. But the performance as it is stands out. All in all, "Black & White" blends fairly well exciting rock with the beauty of lyrical music however with a performance that will leave you wanting more (or something else).Review | Soshi and Ryota "Neo X Lied Series vol.3"