Sunday, March 16, 2008

CD Reveiw: Koda Kumi - Kingdom

Despite the controversy swirling around her at this time, I’m going to go ahead and review this album. Personally, I liked Black Cherry better than this album, but it’s still a great album. She starts out a little to Mariah Carrey for me on the intro, so that turns me off right away because I don’t enjoy her music at all. She included past singles on her new album, which is unlike Koda, usually she puts only new content on her albums, and sticks to single collections to round up any stray singles out there. Track number two is Last Angel featuring Tohoshinki. I love that on their interview on Utaban they called her “Sempai.” Last Angel is a fun song, and I enjoy listening to it, even if it gets a little repetitive. Amai Wana is reminiscent of Shake It, in that it has a bit of a middle-east flavor to the music. Himitsu, is a slower track but still pretty up-beat with a little R&B feal to it. Ai no Uta is one of the previously released singles to appear on the album, a very slow song of decidedly sad nature. Freaky, and But are on this album as well, both very fast, fun songs. My favorite song on the album is Koi no Maho (The Magic of Love) it takes me back to Birthday Eve, and the fun, happy feeling you get from that song. In all, it’s a very diverse and well, established album. I have a feeling though, that the controversy and consequent banishment of Koda from the spotlight is not helping the album sales. I think Black Cherry is still her best selling album, maybe after awhile they will get over what she said and bring her back up to the top notch of Japanese society. Good luck Koda! I’m rooting for you.

1. Introduction For Kingdom
Last Angel feat. Tohoshinki (東方神起)
3. Amai Wana (甘い罠; Sweet Trap)
4. Himitsu (秘密; Secret)
Ai no Uta (愛の歌; Love Song)
7. Under
8. But
9. Koi no Mahō (恋の魔法; The Magic of Love)
Aishō (愛証; The Proof of Love)
11. Anata ga Shite Kureta Koto (あなたがしてくれたこと; What You Did for Me)
12. Wonderland
13. Freaky
14. More
15. Black Cherry (Bonus Track)

Re-makes a-plenty!

Here comes another slew of great Asian movie re-makes. First on the chopping block is one of my favorite horror/thriller movies: A Tale of Two Sisters. The original was suspenseful and intriguing, and stared one of my favorite Korean actresses: Moon Geun-young. She just LOOKS innocent and you want to curl her up in a ball and put her in your pocket to keep her safe. Now, why they don’t just leave these movies well enough alone, I’ll never understand. The second one is Addicted (2002) being renamed as “Possession” slated for a 2008 release as well. My Sassy Girl is being remade (another one where they aren’t even bothering to change the name) with some small-bit actors that I’ve never really heard of (I think I recognize the main guy, but he’s never really been in anything noteworthy.) The final one is Sympathy for Lady Vengeance. Apparently Charlize Theron is directing and acting in the remake of this amazingly popular Korean movie. Those of us enlightened enough to watch these movies in their original form are happy that they were successful, but mostly want the US to leave them the way they are. No news yet on the remake of Love Undercover, but I’ll let you know if I find something else out.

Sunday, March 9, 2008

CD Review: Wish - Yuna Ito

What's that? You miss my reviews? Ok, here's a good one for you:

Wish by Yuna Ito. The powerhouse is back and just as good as before. If you've never listened to Yuna Ito's music before, you're missing out a lot. Her music is a great pop blend that you can listen to whenever you want. I have found that, even though I really love a certain group or singer, I can only listen to them if I am in the right mood. Not so with Yuna. She has a an uplifting tone to her voice. It's clear as a bell and when she belts something out it sounds effortless. Case in point: the title song. Wish is a track that is just beautiful and she sings it with grace and such power. The track Anata ga iru kagiri - A World to Believe In is a very moving song in which Celine Dion and Yuna harmonize beautifully. Tokyo Days is a fun song, upbeat and happy. If you want something that will raise your spirits and sooth you after a long day - pick up this album.

1: Power of Love

2: Alone Again

3: Anata ga iru Kagiri ~ A World to Believe In (feat. Celine Dion)

4. Urban Mermaid

5: Heartbeat

6: Colorful

7: Unite as One

8: Mahaloha (feat. Micro)

9: A Long Walk

10: Moon Rabbit

11: I'm Here

12: Wish

13: Tokyo Days

14: Bonus Track: My Heart Will Go On (which I like better than the original, because, personally, I do like Celine, but can only take her in small doses because I have SUPER sensitive ears and when she sings her high notes it's too much for me. Yuna's is a little quieter, a little calmer, but still powerful.)

Another Strapya Post. :)

I found something even cooler! Stylus' (styli?) that are actually COOL. I have found that my DS Lite lacks anything special in the stylus department mostly because no one is manufacturing anything that is different. Someone just squeezed into the niche marketing for DS owners with a line of metal stylus' that are unique and interesting. There are hearts and butterflies for the girls, as well as wings and swords men would like. Check them out! I want the winged one (I'm not too girly.)

Shiny DS Decorations

In the same vein as the sparkly gem covered ketai are the sparkly gem-covered Nintendo DS Lites. I've seen pictures of decked out DS's before, but never a product I could put my greedy little fingers onto before. Thanks to Strapya I can get one and so can you! They have a new line of the same sticker-type gems that you can attatch to your DS Lite and make it as girly as you want. How exciting!

I want this one:

Follow Up: Cellphone bling

I really liked this one from Strapya. (I still swear by them!) They have a whole slew of cell phone decorations from sparkly to dark and gothic, to fun and some that are practical. This one is one of the ones in between it all. They have a nice line of stick-on gems in great designs, the one I'm refering to is Astroboy~ :) It's a fun twist on an old favorite. I just bought a new cell phone and have to see what I can decorate it with! LINK to STRAPYA

See how easy they apply:

Thursday, March 6, 2008

1st Oriental Supermarket : Orlando

I went to this market the other day, wanting to find a new Asian market - and YAY! It was huge~ The biggest Asian/Oriental market in Florida actually. There was an entire aisle of tea that had me drooling (and I don't even like tea.) They have a great selection of items from the tea, to fresh fruit and vegetables, sea food, a meat/deli section, Asian cell phones (yay!) and a plethora of other items. If I had noticed earlier I would have applied there when I was living in Orlando. They have automated check outs (where they actually scan your food and have a color screen and stuff.) Most markets here in Florida and in back in Minnesota have just stickers and use a generic old cash register. I was impressed and flustered at the same time. I wanted to spend lots of money, but have very little but managed to splurge on a giant bottle of original flavor Ramune. If you live in Orlando, or are planning a vacation, be sure to check them out - it's well worth a visit. Site linky!

Another scandal. Koda Kumi

I read about this briefly and didn't think much of it, but apparently it spiraled out of control over in Japan. Apparently Koda Kumi said something on a radio program that sparked outrage and offended lots of people she said the equivalent of "a woman's amniotic fluid goes rotten after 35." Obviously, this is her opinion, and she's entitled to it if you ask me, but she was shut out of awards shows and performances because of it and has basically gone into hiding until today when she officially and publicly apologized. She stated: "I’d like to reflect on my remarks thoroughly, looking forward to the day when I can sing in front of you again." I feel so bad for her. I think that the general public of Asian countries need to lighten up a little. No, I don't want them to be exactly like the Americans, because I think some of our celebrities are crass idiots, but they need to have respect for them and know that sometimes, even celebs have a problem making their mouth work in conjunction with their brain. I hope she'll be released from her hell soon and will be back singing for everyone in no time.