Jul 28, 2009
the GazettE's DIM Album review
yeah since I had wayyy too much time in my hand after my campus was closed down to the growing number of the H1N1 cases, so I decided to give a full listen to this new album. No, I didn't ordered it. My dear friend had their album and she borrowed it to me.. And since I can't have the CD.. I err.. uhh ripped it? XD yeah I know... such a bad bad bad fan~~ But I swear I'll try and get them as soon as I graduate and have my own job. -w-;;;;
I may not be one of those fans who had been along side them for the past.. what? 7 years yeah? But at least I went through every song they had as far as Wakaremichi. XD
So.. okay.. let's start with my review shall we?
The first thing that came into my mind the word DIM, I thought about a light making its way in the dark... but actually it's more about the darkness taking over the light....
So far the many instrumental tracks have been disturbing the fans: the GazettE are trying out with DIM to create a concept album, and those tracks are here to remind the listener of this specific atmosphere which characterizes DIM. But there's nothing more to it. There's no real link between the songs nor any story-telling. I guess the whole thing is just about introducing something they've never done before and seeing how the fans react - if the concept works, they might be wanting to take it further. And i say they should because I like it! XD
introduces some kind of a mystical atmosphere, with pinched guitar strings and distant voices - while the beats keep it anguishing.
THE INVISIBLE WALL
is both a melodic song and a hard-rock song - Ruki's lamenting voice making a link between each break. The song is... about sorrow and despair, and those themes will be developed throughout the whole album - which makes of THE INVISIBLE WALL a good introduction for DIM. I really love how the song start out. It's just fitting. The spoken lyrics, female voices, screaming, and Ruki's almost crying voice make it more interesting - as the insistent chorus and precise music track aren't really enough - but it doesn't totally catch on. And they could have think of a better ending for this song. It's just... uninteresting +sweat+
A MOTH UNDER THE SKIN
follows the same lines as THE INVISIBLE WALL. However the bass-strumming and use of a megaphone make it sound more Gazette-like (reminds me mostly on Silly God Disco but i find almost all of their songs use this concept LOL). Good rhythm too, which makes me think A MOTH UNDER THE SKIN will be great live. This song is about decadence and modernity - at first Ruki seems to be stigmatizing the whole society but then as he starts talking about art and beauty it appears he's talking about himself as well. And yes, they choose to use the same ending as they did to THE INVISIBLE WALL. Not that I am complaining... but I guess I'll have to tune in if they are pulling off this song at their lives. D= Even a sudden end, cutting right into the song, would have been more interesting - well, in my opinion. An interesting song, anyway, especially for its lyrics.
Now, moving on to LEECH...
I love this song, so I'm not sure I'll manage to stay objective. Anyway, I love the rhythm, and Ruki's singing fits it perfectly - it just makes you want to bounce around when you hear it. Plus they added a melodic chorus to balance the whole thing, which is a good point. For the guitars I LOL.... sometimes Aoi and Uruha sound like they're trying to play electro music or something... funny, but thankfully it fits the song. ^^
And I must say that Ruki's screaming is totally great - been wondering from time to time what others had done to make the lil chibi scream like that.. or had he been practicing before this song ever came into mind? and do i need to remind his curly hair in the Leech's PV? I think it was cool D= but he straightened his hair for the secret live... DDDD=
is one of those ballad songs that I find quite breath taking. According to ruki, Nakigahara is the name of a place which actually do exist- this name could be translated as ''the valley of tears''. Now, how could I describe this song? Basically, the music is just beautiful even though it's a bit long.. and in my opinion a song really is a good song when the emotion is still there whatever the length might be. The sudden breaks, short bridges, well everything in the construction is just so enthralling that you would actually find yourself focused and touched throughout the whole song.
I really love the strumming which makes the song so heartwrenching and melodic.
Oh he sang beautifully in this ballad alright and you find him sound like he is on the verge of tears. Eventhough his pitching is not quite there yet, but the small man with a big voice did tried his best to reach some high notes, something to applaud for especially someone who's not a counter note.
Nakigahara, a beautiful love song tainted with death, sorrow and despair. The lyrics are beautiful to those who understands Japanese (because when translated into english, the actually words kind of lost it's magic there.. so yeah.. cuz it has to do with rhymes and assonanceas they have their importance in the song.)
Erika is the second instrumental track of DIM, and gets us back to the dark and disturbing atmosphere of the album - it's the link between the ballad Nakigahara and the heavy-metal song HEADACHE MAN (why do they have to name it ERIKA??? O____O;;; quite weird... meh but the Gazemen have their rights to give whatever name to their songs.. neh?)
-is one of the best head-banging song of the album despite explicit lyrics LOL. But surprisingly, the construction of the song isn't an absolute mess, the slow verses sung by Ruki at the beginning, the heavy guitar notes in the horror movie style and the mad screaming gives some kind of harmony to the song... (XD at harmony.. what's so harmony about Headache Man again?)
On contrary to what the title makes you think, you can listen to this song without getting a headache (I said ''listen to this song'' not ''headbang to this song''...). HEADACHE MAN could have been an old Gazette song, but with the qualities of a new Gazette song. =D
GUREN (Crimson Lotus)
-is another ballad, maybe even more tragic than Nakigahara, with a rock beat and a few solo guitar lines... well, it's a classical composition but it works, and shows Ruki's voice at its best. The lyrics are quite impressive too. And from what it was stated, it had to do with the world of BURIAL APPLICANT. My interpretation of this song is that Ruki is talking about an unwanted child and his/her cruel fate after the relationship between his/her parents deteriorates. It's definitely a sad song and not a love song, as Ruki said. It's a song about regrets and hatred, and how much they can hurt someone. Traditionally the lotus is a symbol of purity but here it's a crimson lotus, which evokes blood and so on, hence for me it is the symbol of a love that has been stained by irreversibly damaged.
-is the third instrumental track. Filled with babies' cries and ryhtmed by something like a gong, the reason why it's following Guren is obvious. It's a scary and anguishing track, and a good introduction for 13STAIRS[-1]. This track kind of reminds me of the style of Dir en Grey, and especially the atmosphere of their last album, UROBOROS. (and it also got images of the gazemen at the studio trying their best to get a baby crying LOL!)
-*_____* I actually love love love this song!
this gets us back to the heavy sound of the GazettE, guitars and drums fighting each other to speed up the rhythm as fast as possible. Ruki is constantly changing of range of voice to scream, whisper and so on. Loving the way they have overlaid the whole thing and the mixing is greatly done with some experimentations. Loving the sound of Aoi's guitar making. It's just got this feeling to it and Ican't exactly say what but it is a refreshing new sound to the ears!
And the lyrics. *O*
I think it's the first time I hear the GazettE protesting against a social phenomenon - the industrialization of music. And I agree when the discrimination refering to how people tend to judge music and the "waving of waist" to the fact that you have to give in everything the industry wants you to do in the name to be successful. About the title of the song, my guess is that since 13 minus 1 equals 12 it refers to the number of songs of this album (if you cast aside the instrumental tracks)... hence the ''it's only a little longer until 13'' line. Boy, do I sense anger in here or what?..hurm..
DISTRESS AND COMA
-is in the same loop as THE INVISIBLE WALL but this one sounds like they put more work into it - when you hear it you can tell they reached what they were aiming for when they starting writing it. The drum loops at the begining and at the ending of the song, the heavy guitar tunes backed up by Reita's bass, the harmony of the chorus with the rest of the song - emphasized by subtle violin touches - the melodic guitar solo, well everything in the composition of this song has been thought out so that you could listen to it over and over. The brutal ending fits perfectly for the song *____* and there are no better ending for this song. Ruki's singing in my opinion is quite good as he didn't pushed himself here. He even sound better than in NAKIGAHARA when he reaches for the high notes. The lyrics are very poetic, and the meaning almost always underlying... =w= maybe he is hinting something??
KANSHOKU (Sense of Touch)
- is the only light instrumental track of DIM. Six simple notes played on the piano, with digital drum loops in the background - marking the continuity with DISTRESS AND COMA. The title of this track makes me think of someone touching the ivory of a piano keys... well, this track is quite relaxing, and keeps the gloomy side of DIM away.
SHIROKI YUUTSU (White Melancholy)
-the less desperate ballad of the album, even though it's still about regrets and melancholy, as the title says. More violins are used in here and this time used as anither instrumenr and not just as a track in the background and the drum breaks made the song stays in the same vein as DISTRESS AND COMA and KANSHOKU. The guitar solo sounds nice too! ^_^ Almost sounds similair to GUREN i think? but mweh could be my imagination...
On the bright side, I find the burst of violin, bass and drums repetition sound absolutely and perfectly great and love the way Ruki expressed complicated feeling such as regrets with simple poetic words. (sigh~~) All in all, Shiroki Yuutsu is a good ballad, and an interesting song too and reminds me of Calm Envy but better!
IN THE MIDDLE OF CHAOS
-is an introspective song, a little bit more cheerful than the other ones. Ruki's reflecting on his own past and career, but even though it's a laudable attempt, his English kind of spoils the mood. But what the heck~~~ Just cast those lyrics aside and enjoy the jolly good music!! A great music if the GazettE doing it for the sake of fun time to head bang with the fans. =3
-is the last instrumental track - filled with crackling, bells and screaming. I found this one a little bit useless but it's a good transition between IN THE MIDDLE OF CHAOS and OGRE.
- is another head bang song, and a good one. The drums breaks and sudden accelerations keep it up, and the slowing down on 'I.N.F.E.C.T.I.O.N.' gives off a nauseous and disturbing feeling - definitely a song I would love to hear live. I'm still trying to figure out the lyrics thou~~~
is the finale of the album. It's a conclusion, and a good one. The musical theme is introduced with a few guitar notes and a violin - you can tell right from the start that the song will not be a very cheerful one. The whole song will be supported by this violin and an orchestra in the background The violin fades away, and comes back in a burst of guitar tunes and drum loops. Then the rhythm slows down and Ruki's voice slowly comes up over the guitars. As it suddenly speeds up, Ruki starts pounding every sentence to lead the song up to the guitar solo. Ruki resumes singing, pounding again and then going on with his 'lalala'. The song ends as the violin fades out. The lyrics are a blend of all of the feelings the GazettE have developed in DIM - the vocabulary itself shows it: scenery, ray of light, baby's dream, moth, distress, bloom, everything is there. I definitely like this song. It's a nice ending for DIM anyway, and one of its best songs - well.. there's just too many BEST song in this album actually but what the heck XD
As all sums up, in my opinion, DIM is a new revolution of the GazettE experimenting with all the sound they had been using for the past 7 years. Maybe it's not what the fans had been expecting, but from this point we could see how they have improved their style in lyric writing and how they managed to grasp best of a recording studio. All we can hope is that they will go further in what they started exploring. They're definitely on the right track there, in my opinion that is =D