SAKURA ~Hanagasumi~ was Mika Nakashima’s 25th single. It was released on March 12, 2008 and reached no. 12 on the charts and has sold over 24,297+ copies. The title track was used in a camera CM while the b-side was used in a Kanebo KATE CM. This was the third single in the VOICE Era.
1. SAKURA ~Hanagasumi~
2. SAKURA ~Hanagasumi~ (DAISHI DANCE)
4. SAKURA ~Hanagasumi~ (Instrumental)
5. conFusiOn (Instrumental)
Still somewhat mainstream is the ballad SAKURA ~Hanagasumi~ lit. Cherry Blossom Flower Haze. The beginning is filled with some extravagant instruments that include the strings and the piano. Mika’s vocals are very calm and very steady, there’s hardly any change in tone until the second half. The song is somewhat mid-tempo, which makes for a very dull song sadly. However I did like how as the song progressed the music became stronger and more powerful. I guess as it progressed it got better, but I still feel that this version is a little too dull for my tastes, but one the bight side, it did sound very beautiful and lovely.
While the original version was very mid-tempo and calming, the DAISHI DANCE version of SAKURA ~Hanagasumi~ is very up-beat and more vibrant. This version is longer but it’s actually a lot better. Instead of being a ballad, this song features some better beats and a better use of the instruments. The music is faster, as are the vocals, and there’s more a climax, which I loved. And here you could tell where the chorus was, no questions at all. And it was much more memorable and catchy when compared to the original. And the instruments are a lot better too, the strings sound stronger and a bit faster paced, although the piano still sounds the same. I guess it’s amazing what altering the tempo can do.
Wow, where to begin with conFusiOn? This song is certainly one heck of a song. I mean it’s good, don’t get me wrong, but it’s so confusing, I mean really. The beginning with the English vocals and some others, confused me. But then the guitar enters and the song changes into a rock song, even though there was some type of island/reggae theme. But I have to admit that I liked the song. Maybe it was the melody because it was so catchy, but I loved it. It made for a very catchy chorus that was very rock oriented. Although after the chorus things just got weird with the music. Her vocals were great though.
Overall Review: SAKURA ~Hanagasumi~ was hectic hysteria! This single as a package, is so confusing. There’s no central theme and everything is so different. There’s no single genre at all, very hectic, there was ballad, dance, and rock, so confusing. The title tack was somewhat dull, I love ballads, but this one wasn’t all that inspiring or that incredible. However I loved the remix of it, it’s so much better. It’s more vibrant, more alive, and just plain superior, and it’s even featured on VOICE rather than the original. As for the b-side, it was confusing, yet at the same time so awesome. Another magnificent single in the VOICE Era.
Final Grade: 95A