{single} Ceui – mellow melody

August 15, 2009 at 11:16 pm | Posted in Ceui, Music | Leave a comment

Ceui – mellow melody

(released May 23rd, 2007)

1. mellow melody
2. 敏感な風景 [Binkan na Fuukei]
3. 敏感な風景 (Zafi’s Rain Mix)

Ceui’s 2nd single. mellow melody was the ending theme to the anime Sola, while Binkan na Fuukei served as an insert song. Compared to her later works, mellow melody seems to focus more on her vocals than the floaty atmosphere she so favors.

mellow melody is…well, exactly what it says. A mellow melody. Nothing particular that stands out, except that it has a bit of a more indies sound compared to the likes of Kamigami no Uta. Even though I prefer the more Rurutia-esque songs she puts out later, I like the fact that her voice tone is clear here. And yes, she does have the vocal chops. Her voice reminds me a bit some of the more classical, old school anime singers – think Ghibli films’ Inoue Azumi but with a wispier, less operatic high range. While I usually like strings in the background, I think mellow melody would have done better as a simple acoustic version with only guitar…and maybe add some piano.

We see Ceui’s trademark style emerge a bit in Binkan na Fuukei which is, to my surprise, even mellower than mellow melody. Binkan na Fuukei is a gentle piano ballad which puts me in mind of the typical serene hillside anime scene. “Binkan na Fuukei” means “sensitive scenery” and her voice is like wind softly ruffling the grass and flowers. My favorite part is the instrumental bridge with the violin solo and the addition of sparse acoustic guitar. It’s a perfect nostalgic lullaby, and probably of the most heartfelt song of hers I’ve heard so far.

Ending the single is Zafi’s Rain Mix of Binkan na Fuukei. I envisioned more rapid accompaniment that sounded perhaps like rain falling. However, the remixer must have been thinking rain forest instead. This mix adds some wind instrument (?), a light beat in the background, and the substitution of electric guitar in place of the acoustic. The instrumental solo meanders lazily and I don’t like it as much – it feels a bit out of place. The overall feel is a bit jazzier and the whole tropical effect seems at odds with Ceui’s voice and the melody.

Favorite Track: Binkan na Fuukei

Overall Grade: B


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