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  • polymetrica 1:19 pm on December 31, 2009 Permalink | Reply
    Tags: Amano Yoshitaka,   

    【Artbook】Coffin: The Art Of Vampire Hunter D (Amano Yoshitaka Illustrations) 

    Probably one of the best artbooks ever published in the world(?). It’s so good that the local library has a copy of it, which I borrowed and am reviewing here. And happy new year, I guess. GTFO 2009

    Coffin: The Art Of Vampire Hunter D is a standalone artbook first published in Japan by the name of かんおけ―吸血鬼ハンターD (Kanoke – Vampire Hunter D), and later published in North America by Dark Horse Press. This supersized artbook collects the illustrations and artwork, all by Amano Yoshitaka, from the Vampire Hunter D series of novels (authored by KIKUCHI Hideyuki), and exhibits approximately 190 pieces of artwork from a span of 14 years. Despite initially being published in North America, this version is currently available for purchase worldwide on all Amazon divisions except for China. As well, the artbook is written in two languages, Japanese and English, where all instances of the original text is placed beside the translation.

    Order at Amazon: USA (US$26.37) | Canada (CAD$27.55) | UK (£21.85) | France (Marketplace only; €22,50+) | Germany (€28,99) | Japan (¥3,730)

    The contents of the book, in order of appearance, include

    1. Short introduction by KIKUCHI Hideyuki (1 page)
    2. Vampire Hunter D-Portrait of Ixobel- by Kikuchi Hideyuki (6 pages; Exclusive Vampire Hunter D Short Story)
    3. Illustrations from Vampire Hunter D by AMANO Yoshitaka (190 pages)
    4. Painting Data (2 pages)
    5. Notes by Amano Yoshitaka (1 page)
    6. Profile of Amano Yoshitaka (1 page)

    Opinion: This print publication is so amazing that I don’t really know where to start. Just picking it up and seeing its sheer size had already left an impeccable first impression on me, and it further reinforced that perfect impression by amazing me with its complete contents and high print quality. To be honest, I wasn’t much of a fan of Amano’s illustrations – I thought that they were unique and slightly eerily cool, but they weren’t exactly my favourite. However, this book completely changed my opinion of Amano’s work because it really showed off his versatilty and skill as a true artist. There are so many different styles that Amano uses here (not at all limited to the “usual” wispy, thin style!), and this book can be quite aptly described as successfully representing the “many styles of Amano”.

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    • Merun 12:33 am on January 3, 2010 Permalink | Reply

      Concerning the black and white art, it’s true that I usually dismiss them, but that’s mainly for those illustrations which already have a colored version. I think that Amano is fitted for both colored and monochrome.

      I only know of Amano thanks to old Final Fantasy ( before 7 ), and I find it nice. The sample you show is really good at showing the diversity of style and the skill of Amano. Now if I had to get this, I think that I would put it on another shelf as I feel like it’s going to clash with the rest of my collection ^^;

    • Kitsune 11:14 am on January 4, 2010 Permalink | Reply

      Ah, great stuff! Amano is one of my favorite artists :)

    • Bethany 6:07 pm on March 4, 2010 Permalink | Reply

      Thanks so much for this! I’m a D fanatic, and really, REALLY want this art book. :D

    • Alejandro Suárez 6:50 pm on May 11, 2013 Permalink | Reply

      The review of this art book is all I could ask for and even more.
      Here in México, it’s hard to get a hold of this kind of books, but if I need to invest more money in shipping, I’ll do it just because this deserves it.
      Thank you.

  • polymetrica 1:56 am on December 26, 2009 Permalink | Reply
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    【Things You Are Excited About】supercell 2nd Single “Sayonara Memories” Details Revealed 

    This is a translation (and more) for the Oricon Style article that disclosed further details of the single.

    Jacket picture for supercell's "Sayonara Memories", to be released on February 10th. (Illust: redjuice)

    Article title: supercell, a big favourite for 2010’s sakura/graduation song!

    Article translation: Suddenly debuting at 4th in the charts with their first album “supercell” on March 1st, 2009, doing it again with their first single “Kimi no Shiranai Monogatari” in August, and making it certain that they had made a vivid debut from the internet scene to the major commercial scene, supercell is a creator group headed by ryo. After “Kimi no Shiranai Monogatari” first appeared on the charts at 5th, it had continued to be in the Top 20 for 6 weeks, and with long sales, it is now a hit with over 80,000 copies sold.

    A 2nd single from supercell, to be released on Feb 10th and titled “Sayonara Memories”, has arrived. Along with composer ryo’s immensely heartrending lyrics and an impressionable melody, the vocals are will again be by nagi from the group’s previous work. ryo brilliantly shows his depiction of the anxious, bittersweet world view that is characteristic of adolescence. Also, the music video will be by MIKI Takahiro, who will make his debut in the coming spring as a film producer with the notable movie “SORANIN” (Starring MIYAZAKI Aoi), and will utilize a projector to feature fantasy-type content, making this a video a subject to be taken note of.

    As the jacket and artist picture was illustrated by supercell member and noteworthy illustrator redjuice, the jacket has gathered as much attention as the music itself.

    With “Sayonara Memories” having a big hold on being 2010’s huge sakura/graduation song favourite, the formerly internet-based, attention-garnering creator group supercell looks like they would again be of great acclaim in 2010.

    Artist picture drawn by illustrator redjuice.

    Description: Although it’s to be released on February 10th, preorders for both the regular and limited editions of the single have already started at various online retailers such as and cdjapan. The regular edition is retailing at 1,233 Yen while the limited edition, which includes a Region 2 DVD with music video, is priced at 1,575 Yen (1,338Y at The CD’s tracklist, from, is as follows:

    1. さよならメモリーズ (Sayonara Memories/Farewell, Memories)
    2. 教えてあげる (Oshiete Ageru/I’ll tell you)
    3. 約束をしよう (Yakusoku wo Shiyou/Let’s Promise)
    4. さよならメモリーズ -Instrumental-
    5. 教えてあげる -Instrumental-

    Further according to, the total time of the CD amounts to 25 minutes. In addition to having three wholly new songs on the single, the other noteworthy aspect of this would be redjuice’s illustrations, which were drawn in a style quite uncharacteristic of the illustrator’s regularly sleek, mechanical artwork. It’s surprising that a second illustration was drawn other than the jacket artwork, but what is even more interesting is that the second is being billed as an artist picture. What does that even mean? I’m guessing that it’s just a picture redjuice wanted to draw for the single on his own accord, maybe. Hopefully it’ll be used for a special limited edition add on, as the Kimi no Shiranai Monogatari single had an additional sticker with it. Furthermore, ryo wrote on the supercell member blog that there is more to the jacket illustration, and that the full version is even more stunning. Ideally the full, wider version will be released soon! I am also quite anxious to hear the demo tracks for the three new songs, and I’m personally happy that nagi is again providing the vocals for the single. Another notable thing is the curious, supposedly fantasy themed music video. I do hope that it will be more substantial than the “live action” Kimi no Shiranai Monogatari PV.

    Sayonara Memories Demo:
    supercell blog entry: (Japanese)
    Original text from Oricon Style: (Japanese)
    Preorder at (Limited Edition ver)
    Preorder at CDJapan: (Limited Edition ver)

    • Belindahhh 10:50 am on December 28, 2009 Permalink | Reply

      I pre-ordered the CD! thanks for the heads up (: I can’t wait till feb now >w<

    • Kitsune 11:15 am on January 4, 2010 Permalink | Reply

      I really like illustration by redjuice :)

    • Kevyn Legion 11:43 pm on January 17, 2010 Permalink | Reply

      Supercell for me is the best band!!! like woah!!
      All there songs are wonderful!!! Excellent Job Ryo! that’s what you call melody >.<
      Kimi no Shiranai Monogatari is the first song I heard in the band I fell in love with it eventually!

    • The-O 10:02 am on January 22, 2010 Permalink | Reply

      Awesome! Thanks! Did you translate this yourself?

      • polymetrica 11:19 am on January 22, 2010 Permalink | Reply

        No problem, glad the info helped! Yes, I do all the translations posted on this blog.

  • polymetrica 1:59 am on December 23, 2009 Permalink | Reply
    Tags: ,   

    【Novel】涼宮ハルヒの溜息 / The Sigh of Haruhi Suzumiya 

    More like The Sigh of polymetrica, which was my reaction while and after reading. This will also be the last novel review for a long while, I believe.

    Title: 涼宮ハルヒの溜息 (Suzumiya Haruhi no Tameiki) / The Sigh of Haruhi Suzumiya
    Author: 谷川流 (TANIGAWA Nagaru)
    English Translator: Chris Pai
    Illustrator: いとうのいぢ (ITO Noizi)
    Volume: 2nd
    Genre: Light Novel (Comedy, Supernatural, High School)
    Status: Ongoing, currently at 9 volumes. Volumes 1 and 2 published in English by Little, Brown and Company and Yen Press.
    My Rating: 5/10

    Summary: The SOS Brigade, under the directorship of Haruhi, makes a movie to screen at the school Cultural Festival. Tsuruya makes her debut in this volume.

    Review: I disliked this volume even more than the first one, as it was not only infuriatingly mediocre, it was immature and just not fun to read. The entire thing was about Haruhi being her usual bossy self and getting people to do things with little to no direction, and the others trying to accomodate her demands to the best of their ability. I found it pretty overboard that she’s torturing Asahina like that, and congrats to Tanigawa for making the reader have sympathy for Asahina, but for me, it was temporary in that it wore out in the middle, and I also thought that the events that happened to evoke pity for Asahina were overdone and really repetitive. After my sympathy was depleted, I turned to disliking Haruhi even more since she continued to be unreasonable, unproductive, and just annoying. Another reason as to why I didn’t sympathize with Asahina anymore was because Kyon was kind of reeling in her suffering, making typical male teenager remarks like how cute her squeal is, or how even her scared face was adorable. There were some saving graces in this book, though, and those would be Kyon’s frustration with Haruhi (whose feelings echoed my own), and Nagato’s uh, action scenes.

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    • Baka-Raptor 6:19 am on December 23, 2009 Permalink | Reply

      Why couldn’t you write this review four days ago when I added this book to my online order to get free shipping?

      • polymetrica 1:20 pm on December 23, 2009 Permalink | Reply

        Because four days ago, I didn’t feel like torturing myself by reading this book.

    • kaye 11:23 pm on December 23, 2009 Permalink | Reply

      I’m really digging the cover of this one. If I ever do pick it up it will most likely be for the pretty only haha.

      • polymetrica 11:24 pm on December 23, 2009 Permalink | Reply

        The paperback version of the first volume also features a similar graphical cover.

  • polymetrica 7:39 pm on December 20, 2009 Permalink | Reply
    Tags: , , peperonP,   

    【Lyrics】アクアリウム・スカイ (Aquarium Sky) 

    Have been kind of disenchanted with new Vocaloid songs lately, but I just utterly fell in love with this song from just hearing first few seconds. Please give it a listen!

    1. Original lyrics
    2. Transliteration
    3. Translation

    アクアリウム・スカイ (Aquarium Sky)

    Lyrics: 虹原ぺぺろん (ぺぺろんP)
    Compose: 虹原ぺぺろん (ぺぺろんP)
    Arrange: 虹原ぺぺろん (ぺぺろんP)
    Vocals: Hatsune Miku

    Illustration & Video: 御厨わた (Mikuriya wata)

    Nico | Youtube



    Nijihara Peperon’s Comments:
    (From blog)
    This is a song that’s a bit different from all the other past peperonP songs. Please enjoy it.
    Since this is composed of only two different melodies, the biggest focus was actually on the lyrics.
    I think that in this world, the aquarium is the lowest tier of heaven, and the highest tier of hell.
    It’d be a pleasure to be given the chance of feeling something like the sadness within the depths of beauty.

    (From niconico)
    Made a song that reflects the image of an aquarium.
    A false sea. A “blue” that surpasses the unpleasant “blue”. What would I be thinking about if I were in this place…?
    This is a song where the lyrics are of the most importance, and is about the only song in the album that was made in one go.

    Image from the video for the song. (Illust: 御厨わた@Piapro)

    Description: A really relaxing and immersive song that completely exudes the underwater theme. The composition of the song is quite basic, with only two alternating lines of melody, but the arrangement is quite incredible, utilizing soft piano and strings in the background to give it a more mature and deep feel. Even though the same two melody keeps repeating, it doesn’t seem boring or repetitive at all. There seems to be at least 4 instruments playing at once (besides the vocals), which give it layers of depth, making it a great song to relisten to over and over since it’s hard to catch all the sounds used in the song on the first listen. Although there are deep, synthetic exhaling sound effects added in, it’s not at all jarring, and well enhances the underwater atmosphere. I especially enjoy the waterdrop sound effect. Lastly, the vocal tuning is very smooth and has the right tone (not too cutesy, slightly low-pitched), and although it may sound awkward at a few points, it’s well mixed, blending in quite well with the intrumentals.

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  • polymetrica 9:52 pm on December 19, 2009 Permalink | Reply
    Tags: , , ,   

    【Vocaloid Composer】れるりり (rerulili) 

    れるりり (rerulili) is a very new composer in the Vocaloid scene, with only three original songs posted on niconico, where the first one, いつもより泣き虫な空 (Itsumo yori Nakimushi na Sora/A Sky Who’s Being a Bigger Crybaby Than Usual), was posted in September 2009. However, his first song is of extremely high quality, and is one of the best examples of Vocaloid vocal tuning done right. rerulili is also known as 当社比P (ToushahiP/”Compared to this company’s older products”P) since in the description for NakiSora, he wrote that it was 「初音ミク至高のバラード(当社比)です。」/”This is a Hatsune Miku Surpreme Ballad (compared to this company’s older products)”. His videos are also sometimes tagged with 至高の人 (Shikou no Hito/The Surpreme Person) in reference to that line. rerulili resides in Tokyo, Japan, used to be the bassist for a band called LaBluzu (PV on Youtube), and mainly records songs with a live piano, guitar, and bass, and a synthesized drum. “rerulili” is his own romanization for his username.

    rerulili’s quite versatile, as he tackles different genres with each song he produces. So far, he has forayed into making a ballad (いつもより泣き虫な空/NakiSora), Funk (なんで?/Nande?), pop (朝が来て/Asa ga Kite), and many other genres are covered in the songs currently posted exclusively at Piapro. His work also has a pretty authentic sound when compared to other composers’ songs, and by that I mean that the intrumentals sound a little more natural and real, and this is mostly due to the fact that he actually uses real intruments, rather than synthesizing a whole “band” with midi like most one-man producers. (To be honest, though, the drums sounded pretty real to me, and I can’t usually tell the difference.) Most notable, however, is how he tunes the vocals for each Vocaloid. They all sound extremely natural and has little rigidity, if at all, and it’s this point that makes his work stand out the most, as he can even make the Kagamine twins sing naturally and flexibly, despite the fact that they are usually quite hard to properly tune. He seems to have a large repertoire of Vocaloid2 software, and has so far used all the ones from Crypton – Miku, Rin and Len, and Luka. In addition to letting Vocaloids sing his songs, he also does self covers where he quite skillfully sings them himself. I found his version of Asa ga Kite to be better than the original Miku version, and I hope that he does more covers of his own songs.

    In addition to posting on niconico, he also posts new original songs quite frequently on Piapro, and he has more songs on there than on niconico, since he hopes to recruit artists to provide high quality artwork for all of his videos. He also starts project pages on Piapro enlisting help with drawing artwork and putting together videos for each of his songs. The ongoing one right now is for “JOY RIDE”.

    Essential Works:
    1. いつもより泣き虫な空 (Itsumo yori Nakimushi na Sora/A Sky Who’s Being a Bigger Crybaby Than Usual) niconico link / rerulili self cover niconico link **1st and Representative Work**
    2. スカイペインター (Sky Painter) Piapro link
    3. 朝が来て (Asa ga Kite/Morning Arrives) niconico link / rerulili self cover niconico link

    Audioleaf: (Self-covers as a solo artist)

  • polymetrica 10:32 pm on December 18, 2009 Permalink | Reply
    Tags: , Sou at Kunisaki   



    Sou is an amateur illustrator and doujin manga artist from Indonesia. Also known as Kunisaki on Deviantart, she is currently studying in college, is fluent in English, likes The Little Prince, and seems to prefer drawing with pencil than with her Wacom Graphire 3 tablet. Her birthday is on December 2nd, and uses SAI, Photoshop CS, and Painter X for digital illustration. She also releases her own short original manga and sells it at conventions, usually in Singapore or Malaysia, and participates in anthologies and other doujin publications with other artists on Deviantart.

    Sou’s illustrations are very easy to recognize as they all have vibrant and lively colours, an incredible amount of detail, very elaborate and elegant clothing designs, and a lot of original accessories that go with the clothing. Her subjects are usually of female or young male characters, and draws mainly original art, sometimes fanart. Her style is mostly of the anime-type style, where characters have relatively large, glossy eyes and undetailed faces, but Sou is capable of diverging from this and can also detail actual noses and lips. She usually draws solid lines (usually in pencil first) with lots of detail, showing actual strands and layers in the hair and many folds in clothing, and she usually colours in the lines digitally. The detail on Sou’s pencil drawings are astonishing as even her supposed doodles (or scribbles) look absolutely lovely, complete with light shading and distinct lines.

    Her colouring style never sticks to one palette, and even uses normally clashing shades in many pieces of her artwork, but are always extraordinarily well-coordinated. The colouring for hair is usually smooth, has quite a few of highlights, and is clearly layered, but the rest, like clothing, are coloured with coloured, rounded spots that give it a bubbly and floaty look. It’s really hard to describe, but the result is very pretty and unique. Unlike a lot of artists nowdays, though, Sou doesn’t abuse those white spots to add shine, and instead skillfully places and slightly blends the lighter colour shades with the darker ones, giving it a natural and more gradual shine. The general composition of her artwork is really incredible too, as it’s always varied, has different themes, and her characters seem to have a wide array of expressions and poses, which I immensely appreciate since it really gives life to her work and distinguishes it from the work of other artists. This attention to composition seems to apply to her sketches too! Furthermore, she can also draw really nice backgrounds as well as design monsters, in addition to the usual humanoid subjects.

    All in all, Sou is definitely an artist to look out for, and is fast becoming one of my favourites, if she isn’t one already. I really wish that she was more popular on Pixiv as I honestly never tire of seeing her art, and that she would be as well-known in the Japanese illustration scene as other international artists such as kl and Kurot. Just really superb work. Please take a look, and comment on her art blog if you like her work! The descriptions above will never do her artwork enough justice.

    Art blog:

    • kaye 10:58 pm on December 18, 2009 Permalink | Reply

      Ahh, I really love her illustrations! *___* I follow her on deviantart and livejournal, so I’m always excited to see something new posted there haha. Her work is just way too pretty! (She’s super nice, too. |D)

    • Kitsune 11:13 am on January 4, 2010 Permalink | Reply

      Great post! :) I like how you describe the qualities of an artist you want to highlight and link them – it is easy to browse the pictures this way :) She is a good artists, especially I like her colors and composition :)

  • polymetrica 3:35 pm on December 17, 2009 Permalink | Reply
    Tags: ,   

    【Novel】涼宮ハルヒの憂鬱 / The Melancholy of Haruhi Suzumiya 

    Another novel review…You might be sick of this by now, but please bear with me. This is also one of the few instances where something Haruhi-related will appear on this blog.


    Title: 涼宮ハルヒの憂鬱 (Suzumiya Haruhi no Yuuutsu) / The Melancholy of Haruhi Suzumiya
    Author: 谷川流 (TANIGAWA Nagaru)
    English Translator: Chris Pai
    Illustrator: いとうのいぢ (ITO Noizi)
    Genre: Light Novel (Comedy, Supernatural, High School)
    Status: Ongoing, currently at 9 volumes. Volumes 1 and 2 published in English by Little, Brown and Company and Yen Press.
    My Rating: 7.5/10

    Description: This is the English version of the first volume of the Suzumiya Haruhi series, penned by Tanigawa Nagaru and illustrated by Ito Noizi. Melancholy won Tanigawa the grand prize at the eighth annual Sneaker awards (a light novel award from Kadokawa Shoten), and the novel has gone on to be adapted into an anime of two seasons produced by Kyoto Animation, two iterations of manga by MIZUNO Makoto and TSUGANO Gaku, five video games, a radio show, and an upcoming movie adaptation for the fourth novel. The original light novel series currently has 9 volumes out, and is still ongoing.

    Summary: Kyon is a student starting his first year at high school. In his class is an odd girl named Suzumiya Haruhi, who introduces herself with a declaration that shocks Kyon. Kyon talks to Haruhi one day – an action which he will regret since Haruhi then proceeds to turn his life upside down with her detemination to fulfill a certain wish of her’s.

    Review: This novel is the very definition of what a light novel is – A fun, engaging, and entertaining read that doesn’t let you think at all, but makes just enough sense to not make you question any of it. To put it slightly negatively, it’s mindless entertainment in the form of writing. It has no substance, and it needs no substance. While you’re reading it, you feel that it’s very engaging, but after you read it and proceed to try thinking of what you’ve just read, you won’t really be able to recall it since it’s so unsubstantial it just went over your head. Melancholy is exactly like instant gratification, and is ONLY there for satisfying your immediate need for entertainment. It has great rereading value in that it’s just mediocre enough to make it unimpressionable, while be just good enough that you enjoy it in the process.

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  • polymetrica 5:23 pm on December 16, 2009 Permalink | Reply
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    【Novel】闇の守り人 (Yami no Moribito) / Moribito II: Guardian of the Darkness 

    How do you review a practically perfect book anyways? Here’s my (very lengthy) attempt at trying. The review for the first book in the series is here. Sorry for all the book-related posts lately, I’ve been kind of on a reading spree since I reserved a million books from the library.

    Title: 闇の守り人 (Yami no Moribito) / Moribito II: Guardian of the Darkness
    Author: 上橋菜穂子 (UEHASHI Nahoko)
    English Translator: Cathy Hirano
    Illustrator: 二木真希子 (NIKI Mayuko;JPN ver), 清水裕子 (SHIMIZU Yuko;ENG ver)
    Volume: 2nd out of 10
    My Rating: 9.8/10

    Summary: The second book of Uehashi’s Moribito series features again Balsa as its protagonist, but is set in a different fantasy country than the first book, and have no other recurring characters from the previous volume. This time, Balsa revisits her home country in order to face her past, and eventually entagles herself in a series of events that may result in the collapse of a country. Since this installment barely refers to the events of the first book (and when it does, a brief recap of the previous one is given), the two books are mutually exclusive in content.

    Review: Wow, where should I start? I read this book with a critical mindset, enjoying everything that the novel had to offer while asking questions and looking for holes along the way, but even with such vigilance, I was wholly unable to find any plot holes, incoherent explanations, unanswered questions, or needless plot devices. Uehashi really, truly weaved an airtight illustration of her intricate fantasy world, and as a result this second book is even better than the first one. It’s really hard to believe that an author can provide such a lush picture of their own imagination while still taking the care to address every matter and leave nothing unexplained, and also provide plausible, fitting, logical and complete explanations for everything as well. Nasu should learn from this book, seriously. Compared to the other fantasy children/youth novels I’ve read before, such as Deltora Quest or Harry Potter, Moribito II surpasses both so much in intricacy, depth, and maturity that it’s going to make it really hard for me to go back to reading less substantial books than this.

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