Shiina Ringo throws herself from pure rock to jazz and back again at the flick of a switch and this live vault is “Papaya Mango” from her jazz side. It’s such a cute showy song, one to kick your legs too with big feathers on!
Shiina’s releasing her Expo 08 concert on DVD, a show that chronicles her 10 year career and celebrates it with some new material too. It was recorded at Saitama’s Super Arena and is due for release on 11th March. There are first print bonuses of stickers and musical scores.
Shiina Ringo. We loved her rocking out before she went off jazzing around. Here’s one of my favourite videos of all time. The song is “Identity” and I’ve never seen such an evil horsey in all my days.
Shiina Ringo has been having a very busy 10 year anniversary and now she completes it all with a box set re-release of all her work to date. Available in either 5 CD’s or 5 DVD’s, you can have all five of her albums. It will be housed in a box that plays Shiina when you open it and will also have a 100 page booklet, stickers, postcards and a poster. What a great way to get into the Ringo! Release date is 25th of November.
Good old Shiina is enjoying her 10 year anniversary a lot! Her latest release this year will be “Zazen Extasy”, a live dvd to Shiina’s one-night-only concert to be held on 30th July from a Fukuoka theatre stage. Will it be rock or will it be jazz I wonder? Its due for release in Japan on 17th September.
Shiina Ringo celebrates 10 years of music and to mark the event she’s releasing several new items.
The first is a DVD with all her music videos on including a new song called “Mellow”. “Identity” should be good fun to watch! The second is a b-sides and rarities CD entitled “Watashi to Hoden” which will be 2CD set containing 22 songs. There’s a ltd edition with a sticker and an ad for her anniversary concert. On top of this several albums will be reissued.
Happy Birthday Shiina!
Shiina Ringo never sits still. This her fifth album puts her firmly in a jazz/rock genre but then again doesn’t at the same time! “Heisei Fuzuko” (featuring a fantastic front cover) gives us some old songs reworked and a few new ones for good measure.
The album opens in grand style with “Gamble” which has so many instruments thrown together. Brass, strings and a full rock band all going together. It’s like an orchestrated stadium rock song and a fantastic song. This is followed up by “Stem” which is a smoky jazz club number sung in English sounding nothing like its original (which I prefer).
“Confusion (Terra Ver.)” then gives us a cabaret styled song. Fast, snazzy and at the kind of ambience that makes you want to shimmy sideways with your hands jiggling from side to side. Different but joyous. “”First Love” Singer” then mixes a beautiful string arrangement with ambient percussive noises for a surreal and oddly eerie song that I enjoy more with each listen.
Out comes the old 70′s dancers for “Papaya Mango” for people to mamba around to before the reworked “Consciously” works well but again doesn’t have the same feel or power of the original – more like a set finisher for Engelbert Humperdink Shiina style.
“Le Salle De Bain” is a remake (Yokushitsu) the works again not as well as the original (this version is much slower) before “Camouflage” again starts the sneak jazzed up madness again. “Poltergeists” is a beautiful waltz that works just as well as the original while “Temporary Virgin” has Shiina singing in english to a French styled playful string arrangement.
“Courtesan” then shifts completely to an electronic song with bleeps, bumps, beats and echoing vocals. It’s a bit jarring but the orchestra joins in for a big finale.
“Scar” is an achingly beautiful and poignant piano led song which breaks out into a big climax in the second half with Shiina hauling every instrument possible back in. The album finishes on the playful “Memory” sounding like a cross between a children’s song and a closing track to a Disney film.
To say the shift from rock to jazz doesn’t influence my review would be lying. I struggle with jazz. The fact I can make it through a listen is a compliment. The reworked songs do not work for me and pale in comparison to the originals although its nice to have them all the same. The album has grown a bit on me over time but if you’re looking for rock out anthems like her previous works, do not look here.