【Singers】 ClariS / Alice☆Clara (アリス☆クララ)

claris

ClariS is a musical unit consisting of two singers, Alice and Clara. They are most well-known for their first major debut song “irony”, which was used as the opening theme to the anime adaptation of Ore no Imouto ga Konna ni Kawaii Wake ga Nai (俺の妹がこんなに可愛いわけがない). ClariS is also notable in that both members of the unit are still middle school students and also that Alice and Clara never show their faces, instead being represented by illustrations from various artists such as redjuice, Aoki Ume, and Kanzaki Hiro. According to theirofficial bio, ClariS means “bright, clean, and brilliant” in Latin, and Alice and Clara’s old website also reveals some other interesting facts – Alice’s hobby is dancing, her special ability is swimming, and her favourite subject is English, while Clara’s special ability is playing the piano, her favourite subject is music, and if she was stranded on a deserted island, she would choose to bring her cell phone.

Before making their major debut as ClariS, Alice and Clara posted covers of songs under the unit name of Alice☆Clara (アリス☆クララ) on niconico. Their most popular cover is of “only my railgun”, which has more than 1,400 Mylists as of this post. However, the majority of their works are not niconico chart-toppers at all, with many of their submissions gathering under 200 Mylists. Despite this, Alice and Clara caught the eye of the staff at anime music magazine LisAni! and were chosen to be the vocalists of two exclusive original songs, Drop and Kimi no Yume wo Miyou (君の夢を見よう). Both songs were composed by kz (livetune) with illustrations from redjuice.

ClariS’s sound reflects the meaning of their unit name quite well – both Alice and Clara consistently sing in bright and clear voices. Although their voices are admittedly not very unique, they fit in very well with the pop genre, and to sum up ClariS’s current works, their songs are comfortable and easy to listen to. Despite being in the “musical comfort zone” for now, one of ClariS’s most attractive characteristics right now is their potential, as kz of livetune observed.

Essential Works:
1. irony
2. Drop
3. only my railgun (niconico link)

ClariS Official Website: http://www.clarismusic.jp/index.html
Alice☆Clara Website: http://x82.peps.jp/alicekurara
Alice☆Clara’s Mylist: http://www.nicovideo.jp/mylist/15308474
ClariS at SonyMusic: http://www.sonymusic.co.jp/Music/Arch/SMER/claris
LisAni! on ClariS: http://asianbeat.com/ja/feature/issue_music/claris/lisani.html
kz(livetune) on ClariS: http://asianbeat.com/ja/feature/issue_music/claris/kz.html

【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.

sayomem1.png
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.

sayomem2.png
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 amazon.co.jp 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 Amazon.co.jp). The CD’s tracklist, from amazon.co.jp, 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 amazon.co.jp, 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: http://www.supercell.jp/index.html
supercell blog entry: http://www.supercell.sc/archives/2009/12/post-44.html (Japanese)
Original text from Oricon Style: http://www.oricon.co.jp/news/music/71963/full (Japanese)
Preorder at amazon.co.jp: http://www.amazon.co.jp/dp/B002Y3DFDU/ (Limited Edition ver)
Preorder at CDJapan: http://www.cdjapan.co.jp/detailview.html?KEY=SRCL-7203 (Limited Edition ver)

【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

虹原ぺぺろんさんのコメント
ブログから
これまでの曲とは一味違ったぺぺろんPの曲をお楽しみください。
ABメロのみの構成で、歌詞重視の1曲になりました。
アクアリウムはこの世界で最も低い位置にある天国であり、この世界で最も高い位置にある地獄だと思います。
美しさの中に潜む哀しさのようなものを感じていただければ嬉しいです。

ニコニコ動画から
水族館をイメージした曲を作りました。
偽りの海。不快な「青」すぎる「青」。私はこの場所に何を想うだろうか……。
アルバムの中で一息つくような、歌詞重視の曲になっています。

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.

aquariumsky.png
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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