{single} HIMEKA – Hatenaki Michi

December 11, 2009 at 12:13 am | Posted in HIMEKA, Music | Leave a comment

HIMEKA – Hatenaki Michi
HIMEKA – 果てなき道

(released November 25th, 2009)

1. 果てなき道 [Hatenaki Michi]
2. 空は教えてくれる [Sora wa Oshiete kureru]
3. 果てなき道 ~Instrumental~
4. 空は教えてくれる ~Instrumental~
5. 果てなき道 ~Anime Edit~

HIMEKA’s 2nd single. The A-side is the ending theme to the anime series Tegami Bachi (also known as Letter Bee). The coupling track is also an original song.

I loved Hatenaki Michi from the moment I watched the first episode of Tegami Bachi, and my love for the song has grown even more in the full version. Now THIS is the HIMEKA I’ve been waiting for – the vocals are strong and full (her belting is wonderful, and her head voice peak notes are gorgeous), and this song is full of passion. I love the arrangement as well – the piano, guitar, strings, and harp (!!! yes, Yoruko is a sucker for harp) give this track a beautiful wintry feel. The part before the final chorus makes me think of a snowy mountain path and a starlit sky, but maybe that’s because I’m so used to the Tegami Bachi ED sequence. Hatenaki Michi is catchy, emotional, and memorable…and much more epic than Asu e no Kizuna.

Believe it or not, Sora wa Oshiete kureru sounds even more anison than Hatenaki Michi. Good piano intro, leading into the vocals. HIMEKA’s vocals are a bit more aggressive here, and the song is more rockish than the A-side. It even sounds like something that Mizuki Nana would sing (perhaps we can hope for an Animelo duet someday?). However, while HIMEKA gives a strong performance, the song itself is a bit weak – the melody is nice, but doesn’t leave a lasting impression. Also, I have a sneaking suspicion that HIMEKA might have been autotuned in this (her voice sounds a bit too polished in some parts).

The limited edition of the single comes with the Anime Edit of Hatenaki Michi. There’s not a big deal to say about it, except it’s a wonderful cut. I like how it starts directly with “aimai ni…” instead of having the whole build up to it, but I still prefer the full version to it, since this one feels faster-paced and has less contrast. Overall, this single is a step up from her debut. Keep up the good work, HIMEKA – we’re cheering you on, no matter what you go through!

Favorite Track: Hatenaki Michi

Overall Grade: A


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