ORION was Mika Nakashima’s 27th single. It was released on November 12, 2008 and reached no. 6 on the charts. In all this single has sold over 49,958+ copies. The title track was used as the an insert song in the TBS drama Ryūsei no Kizuna. The b-side was used in a Canon IXY Digital 920 IS Camera CM. And despite such low sales, ORION has sold over 1.3 million digital downloads. This was also the final single in the VOICE Era.
3. ORION (Instrumental)
4. FOCUS (Instrumental)
After so many pop songs from Mika it’s good to see her getting back to her soft jazz roots; and ORION does just that. And although it isn’t a true jazz song, it’s a step in the right direction. This song has such a calming, laid-back mood to it. The acoustic guitar is particularly good , and the electric guitar is even better. The drums were very calming and were surprisingly very light. As for the vocals, well they were as strong as ever. And the went really well with the instrumentals oddly enough. There was a certain soft rock feel in this song, and it was just wonderful. I loved all the English lines, no matter how small, and the electric guitar solo during the bridge.
If you though conFusiOn was confusing, get ready for FOCUS! This song is a bit different from her other songs released in this era as it contains some strong synth influences. Yet on the other hand, when that brass comes in, it’s so jazz oriented, and so incredible. But with the synth opening I had no idea really what to expect, then all that retro keyboard began to play and things got even more weird. But during the chorus the brass enters and then things get a little more normal. As it blares, Mika sings her heart out while showing some power in her vocals, making for one hell of a chorus that’s pretty catchy. And as usual this song does feature some English, a minimal amount but good nonetheless. And I loved how this song was so up-beat.
Overall Review: ORION was a superb single. It’s nice to see that Mika is getting back to her jazz roots like back during her debut. ORION was a bit slow, but I really liked it, the instrumentals did wonders for the song. FOCUS was a bit odd I’ll admit, but again I really liked it. I haven’t heard many of her up-beat songs so it’s nice to hear a change once in a while. And compared to her last single, her vocals seem to have improved a bit. That being said though, I do wish that both were similar in some way, but at least both were jazz oriented. Such a calming, and blaring way to end the VOICE Era.
Final Grade: 100A+