Monday, March 26, 2012

[J-Music] Ayumi Hamasaki - Party Queen (album)

Artist: Ayumi Hamasaki
Album title: Party Queen
Release date: 21 March 2012

When I heard the title of Ayumi Hamasaki's new album and saw the covers for "Party Queen" I was totally worried that I won't like the album. I'm not a big fan of party music and going to disco and this is what I expect when I hear this title.

The first songs made my worries real. They are up-beat songs which are really good for dancing. And I'm not really interested in such music. I did my sport workout while first listening, so it was kind of fitting music for this.
Then the fifth song started and I was really surprised. In my eyes the whole style of the album changed into nice pop songs and ballad-like music. I really like this fact, even if now the title "Party Queen" isn't reflected anymore.

My personal highlight of the album is the song "Eyes, Smoke, Magic". When I first listened to it I saw a Broadway-stage in front of my eyes, with women dancing with petticoat-dresses and men in smoking. This song really gave me this kind of mood. After I now know the translation of the lyric it makes me think, because this cheerful song tells a sad story.

Another great song, in my opinion, is "How Beautiful You Are", which is the last song of the album. I'm especially impressed by the PV which shows people who are not looking like the average. I think it wants to tell that it doesn't matter how you look, you are always beautiful - and you are allowed to love who you want.

By now I really fall in love with Ayu's new album. I also started to like the first songs after I have listened to them more often. It's a really great album and a must-have for every fan!

(And now I'm a little bit sad that I'm not able to attend one of her concerts when I go to Japan in July this year...)

01. Party queen
02. NaNaNa
03. Shake It♥
04. taskebab
05. call
06. Letter
07. reminds me
08. Return Road
09. Tell me why
10. a cup of tea
11. the next LOVE
12. Eyes, Smoke, Magic
13. Serenade in A minor
14. how beautiful you are

As always there are 3 different versions of this album. There is a "CD only" version with just the album. The "CD + DVD" version includes a DVD with PVs and making-of of 4 songs (Shake It♥", "NaNaNa", "Return Road" and "how beautiful you are"), while the other version with 2 DVDs includes another DVD with the COUNTDOWN LIVE 2011-2012 A ~HOTEL Love songs.

PV "How Beautiful You Are"

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