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SINGLE REVIEW: Namie Amuro- 60s 70s 80s

Namie Amuro- 60s 70s 80s

This is Namie Amuro’s latest single, and the start of her post-PLAY era. I can tell you all honestly that I’ve never been a huge fan. I love watching her interact with people on television and such, and she’s gorgeous, but as far as artistry I’ve never been super impressed. She has a way of singing that makes her sound like she’s doing the most boring thing she possibly could be doing. However, there are a few exceptions to this. I did feel that her previous album definitely deserved the #1 it received, and she has certainly earned her popularity. Oh also this cover is hot. Damn.

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The first song on this triple A-Side single is NEW LOOK, which is one of the girliest songs I’ve heard since Urban┬áMermaid, but in a good way. I don’t think the song would be so entertaining if it was about anything else. So it starts with interesting 60s-esque piano, synth, and some lady saying hello to all the ladies… Hmm… Well, regardless of whether or not I’m supposed to listen to the song, I enjoy it. I liked the composition because of how well it flowed. It led wonderfully up to the climax, even though it was a bit of a wait. Although it is a bit repetitive, you can’t help but have fun. One really of the strong points is the use of background effects and vocals. This song is jam-packed with accouterments that are there simply to enhance the song, which is done quite well. Musically the song pretty much sticks with piano, but is accompanied by a full band arrangement. 60s-style brass, bass, and some more modern percussion. My only problem was that the lyrics became so thick in parts that she was chanting rather than singing. That is approaching rap way to closely for me, and we all know how I feel about that. Especially if it’s not intentional. Vocally Namie does surprisingly well. Although she still has that deep bored voice, the climax works out nicely because it stands out so strongly from the rest of the song. The lyrics should have been shortened a bit in a couple places, but other than that it’s a solid track.

Vocal Performance Grade: A- — Musical Performance Grade: A — Composition Grade: A-

Overall Grade: A-

Up next is the 70s, which is represented by ROCK STEADY. The introductory effects were very 70s, and the constant filtered notes in the background really supported the era of designation. The verses are a bit bland for the early part of the song, but after the first chorus everything is so much better. I loved the unscripted vocalizations as well. Vocally Namie definitely stepped it up in this song. There is so much more to work with, and I’m glad that she was given more diverse notes and more powerful areas. Musically the song is made up of constant percussion and maybe some bass. There’s really not a lot of musical support because of how filling the background vocals are. There is enough crammed in there to fill any empty musical space. Composition-wise this song is a bit less organized but overall slightly better than the previous. The chorus is very engaging and really serves as a climactic, reoccurring sequence in the song. Even though there aren’t any obvious one climax, the song as a whole is contrasting enough to not need it. This song is marginally stronger than NEW LOOK, even though both are very good. It may just be that it’s a bit more fun, but it also flows better and is more entertaining.

Vocal Performance: A- — Musical Performance Grade: A — Composition Grade: A

Overall Grade: A

I didn’t think that Namie would be doing much better than ROCK STEADY, but she’s proved me wrong with WHAT A FEELING. I don’t like the ‘Everybody call me dancing queen‘ intro, but everything after that is pure genius. The verses are quick and edgy with a great beat and fantastic runs by Namie. Once again everything is slightly better than the previous track. The music is basically just percussion and synth with a distinct 80s vibe in the way that it flows. Namie isn’t chanting in this song either (except in the beginning). Once again this song serves an amazing chorus, however this one is even better than that in ROCK STEADY. The way she sings ‘What a Feeling‘ is really compelling, and probably one of the best runs I’ve heard from Namie in a while. I was simply really impressed with this song. The way the composition goes from edgy to powerful is wonderful to listen to, and I have to say this song is absolutely phenomenal. There isn’t really anything I dislike about it except for that short intro. And since it ends so quickly, I’m really not bugged. Her vocals are better than I’ve heard them in a long time, and everything just works out. Definitely will be on repeat for quite a while.

Vocal Performance Grade: A+ — Musical Performance Grade: A+ — Composition Grade: A+

SINGLE GRADE: A

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