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After Miyavi left PS Company in 2009 and formed his own record label, J-Glam, it may have proven to be a lot more difficult to venture on his own than he had imagined. Despite getting married and having children, Miyavi’s 2010 release What’s My Name? carried some dark undertones, which contrasted with the happy-go-lucky-Miyavi many fans knew him as.
If dreamy ballad, “Inori Wo” on his latest studio album, SAMURAI SESSIONS Vol. 1, is an indicator of his current mindset, “Daybreak has come / The rain has stopped / The wind is blowing / The clouds have dissolved / We can now see tomorrow,” he is headed towards a positive direction.
Give credit where credit is due: Miyavi isn’t standing still. “DAY 1” is ambitious, and certainly not your standard J-Rock remix, Even with this collaboration single, he doesn’t get lost in the techno — his signature guitar slap is present right from the get-go, and his vocal style is maturing. “DAY 1” shows potential. But…
On its own, the audio track is only half as interesting as the (really cool) video — the concept seemed to have stopped short once they got into the studio. The two-artist mix is interesting, but doesn’t yield anything new as a result. I like where “Day 1” is heading, but it feels like they recorded the rehearsal and called it a day. I think they could have really kicked this song in the balls and made something awesome.
Coupling track “FUTURISTIC LOVE 2012” is a forgettable B-side, featuring a Miyavi-stream of big words: Religion. Race. Gender. Culture. History. No statement is made, no position taken, so it’s just pretentious and empty.
The “DAY 1” instrumental track is actually my favorite. Without the half-hearted vocals, the instrumental arrangement stands out. It’s great video-game driving music, much better on the headphones than on the dance floor.