Unicorn Jr. presents a matured version of its trademark EDM-pop sound in the new single “Yessir!!!”.
Unicorn Jr. consists of Shouta Aoi, Chiharu Sawashiro and Toshiyuki Someya.
Title: Yessir!!! Release date: 24/11/2021 Label: Rejet Genre: EDM/Jazz
1 - Yessir!!! 2 - 千差万客 3 - オリジナルドラマ
Track by track analysis:
1 – Yessir!!!
Washy synths open the curtain for Unicorn Jr.’s “Yessir!!!”. The trio brings a powerful EDM sound to the spotlight however with a couple of changes at its core
The verses ride on a comfortable mid-tempo, with saw synths and polysynths leading the way, creating a wide and quite intense soundscape. Underneath is a slow-paced snare + triplets-driven beat, adding a bouncy twist to the track.
The chorus slows things down, going slightly darker, with a trap beat and orchestral hits completing this change in tone, creating one of the most intense choruses Unicorn Jr. has graced its fans with.
On the vocal end, do expect to find the trio’s well-known clean vocals, however, with a twist. There is a rap portion in this song, with all members challenging themselves and delivering quite the surprising overall performance.
Although not a big change to their sound, this darker and deliberately intense sound suits the group well.
2 – 千差万客
“Sensa Bankaku” wraps up this single with a touch of elegance. Trumpets lead the way for this track, welcoming the listener to the grand hall in this jazz club soundscape.
The guitars are playful, the drums intense, and incredibly technical on the toms, trombones, and trumpets add a layer of danger and fun to this performance. The bassline is so punchy that it sounds like it is hopping on top of the rest of the instrumental.
Everything about this song is pure fun, the type that is reserved for a mature type of group and audience which is yet another interesting change in Unicorn Jr.’s sound.
Shouta Aoi, Chiharu Sawashiro, and Toshiyuki Someya went for a performance full of elegance, harmonizing with a lot of ease, Aoi and Sawashiro were in their game for their solo parts whereas Someya does sound a bit strained at times, making his performance quite “funky” (not the good type of funky).
With a classy jazz sound and melodic vocals with none of their trademark synths, “Sensa Bankaku” is a massive change in tone and sound for the group but a welcomed one.
In another entry in the Shining Stage CD series, another group completely changes their sound.
Unicorn Jr. arrives with a matured version of the trademark EDM-pop sound in “Yessir!!”. For those that have been following the trio’s career up until now, you’re well-acquainted with their brand of hyped-up, synths-driven EDM sound. While in some occasions it has served them well and made the group shine, in others it ended up being generic.
That is no more, at least in this single.
The title track “Yessirr!!!” does explore EDM but on a completely different level. What previously were intense, bright synths now are dark, slow-paced synth stabs. What was before a generic pop beat, now is a hard-hitting hip-hop beat.
It is safe to say that all those changes in the instrumental alone – the ones I just listed are the ones easily noticeable as soon as the song kicks off -, their sound has vastly improved. Not only did their sound change but also their performances or, at least, there is something else being brought to the performances.
Shouta Aoi, Chiharu Sawashiro and Toshiyuki Someya tackle for the very first time rap and they did quite a good job in this performance, having a groove and flow that fits the song’s intensity.
The b-side introduces fans of the group to jazz music. “Sensa Bankaku” is all about its classy performances and elegant sound. This change in tone and sound shows that there is a lot of potential for Unicorn Jr. to impress and it doesn’t have to stick strictly to pop or EDM.
As a result of that change, the performances had to match the quality and technicality required of jazz and while Shouta Aoi and Chiharu Sawashiro easily matched those, Toshiyuki Someya did struggle quite a bit to not sound strained.
All in all, Unicorn Jr.’s “Yessir!!!” opens a new chapter for the group, introducing a couple of new things to their performances, changing their quite a bit to showcase their versatility, ending up sounding like a matured group.
“Pythagoras Production Shining Stage Vol.2 UNICORN Jr.” is available for purchase at CDJAPAN.