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Archive for the ‘AZU’ Category

[Single] AZU’s ‘JEWEL SKY’

SINGLE REVIEW: AZU’s ‘JEWEL SKY’

AZU- JEWEL SKY

I like this cover a lot better than AZU’s previous single, CHERISH. I don’t know if I should expect something different or not, but I’m just hoping it’s well done. AZU’s vocals in her debut single surprised me and I was really excited to listen to the whole thing, so now I’m just hoping this follow up single measures up. Here is AZU’s latest single ‘JEWEL SKY’.

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The A-Side of this single is the upbeat pop song JEWEL SKY. I really like this song as well, thankfully, and I’m impressed by the powerful and almost dramatic vocal performance. The feeling it adds to the song is interesting, and AZU definitely deserves that record deal. The music in this song is the typical pop style percussion, but it has a continual and well-done brass element in the background that adds a unique atmosphere to the song. AZU’s music has had brass before, but this is the first song in which it depends mostly on it. The whole thing just flows really well together, and I’d go as far as to say this is a step up from her already impressive debut single. If she keeps up this trend she will have a very impressive album.

Vocal Grade: A — Musical Grade: A+ — Consistency Grade: A+

Overall Grade: A+

The second song on the JEWEL SKY, single is SO WONDERFUL, a song that features a tempo pretty close to that of the cover track. The first thing I noticed about the song was that there were quite a few things going on all at the same time in the introduction, which actually sounded really nice. What I thought to be an upbeat song slowed down as the verses started, but I’m actually really glad. AZU gives a fantastic vocal performance, and it really makes the song wonderful. This track is stronger than the previous, and possibly one of my favorites from her thus far. The chorus picks up in speed but still manages to sound heart felt. Though this isn’t a ballad, it is pretty much as close as you can get. AZU’s music surprises me once again with a guitar solo in the first part of the last third of the song. Everything about this song works well, and it has a great consistency.

Vocal Grade: A+ — Musical Grade: A+ — Consistency Grade: A+

Overall Grade: A+

The final song on this single is Kimi ni Yomu Uta, which is the true ballad. This song features gentle guitar chords and beautiful vocals on AZU’s part. I’m still hearing a similarity to Koda Kumi in her, but I can definitely hear the differences and uniqueness of AZU’s vocals. There is some percussion thrown in with the guitar, and possible even some piano. Musically the song is yet again well done, and I think anyone can really appreciate this girl’s music. Vocally this song is incredibly strong, and I’m very surprised at her ability to pull off such a range of tempos. Although I don’t think this ballad is as good as VIOLIN from her last single, it’s still wonderful. This single is, overall, stronger than her debut.

Vocal Grade: A — Musical Grade: B+ — Consistency Grade: A

Overall Grade: A-

SINGLE GRADE: A+

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[Single] AZU’s ‘CHERISH’

SINGLE REVIEW: AZU’s ‘Cherish’

AZU- CherishAZU- Cherish

AZU is a brand new artist who hasn’t yet released her debut album, and is only on her second single. ‘CHERISH’ is her first A-Side, and she currently has two singles total released. She’s a cute girl and I expect her music to be pretty decent. I’m guessing we’ll end up with some pop with the occasional dance number or ballad thrown in, and I’m hoping that she’ll have a nice voice. If not, this review probably won’t see the light of day… So here we are with AZU’s debut single ‘CHERISH’.

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The A-Side of AZU’s debut single is the mid/up tempo CHERISH. Interestingly enough, her voice kind of reminds me of Koda Kumi in a lot of ways. She kind of has Kumi’s sort of soulful sound, almost rough, but in a higher pitch. The song is composed of percussion and pop beats which blend well with AZU’s pleasing vocals. I’m glad that her voice is as good as it is, because I was afraid I’d be stuck with another only-average vocalist, but I was really impressed with her controlled tone and beautiful sound. So vocals were good, and I can say that the music was also really good. The chorus featured some really cool brass music that added flavor to the song. The song had one problem which was that I occasionally felt that the music and vocals weren’t connecting very well. I barely even noticed it until I was looking.

Vocal Grade: B+ — Musical Grade: A — Consistency Grade: A-

Overall Grade: A-

The first of two B-Sides is the very pop-ish SUMMER BREEZE. The vocal performance in this song is actually stronger than the previous, and I think that AZU really excells, unlike Koda Kumi, in mid tempo pop. Koda Kumi’s voice, for me, is usually too deep to pull off pop, but this girl’s voice is more versatile in that sense. This is probably mostly due to the fact that AZU’s voice is higher. The music for this song is fairly simple, but I think it’s effective for its purpose. This song is assuredly a normal pop song, but nonetheless it is really well done. I don’t know if AZU writes any of her lyrics or music, but at least I know she’s talented. I really liked some of the effects used on the vocals because they added a unique effect that made the song stand out for me.

Vocal Grade: A- — Musical Grade: B+ — Consistency Grade: A

Overall Grade: A

The third and final track on the CHERISH single is the much slower and more heartfelt VIOLIN. The the music of this song is composed of quiet piano and gentle percussion that set a mature and more soulful atmosphere. I can hear a bit of Koda Kumi in all of these songs, and this is no exception. When AZU holds notes, she does the exact same fluttery thing that Kumi does, which is good. Although I don’t want her to be just like Kumi, since that would make her incredibly… err… not special, I think that the similarities are inevitably helpingher grow on me. Vocally this song is gorgeous, and AZU’s high notes just make me smile. This song is well composed, and combined with my natural tendancy towards ballads, is easily my favorite song off the single. Everything about it just works, and I’m really enjoying it.

Vocal Grade: A+ — Musical Grade: A — Consistency Grade: A+

Overall Grade: A+

SINGLE GRADE: A

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