Temporary Intermission

Wow I haven’t blogged for so long that I’m starting to get rusty at it, language-wise and all; but then I have been exposed to nothing but numbers over the last 2 months. Anyhow, perhaps in this moment of peace I should give an update as to what’s been happening since the absence of my presence here. The exam timetable was released and I completely devastated to find that I had 3 exams over two days (just this past Tuesday and Wednesday). I had my hardest two exams on Tuesday (which was the real setback) and my least important one the following day. In total, those 3 tests came to a total of 185% of my final marks. So in the span of 26 hours I had obtained nearly 2 courses worth of marks, how sad.

 

So for the last few weeks especially I have been stressing over how to manage that foreboding flow of exams; I (tried to) study day and night but even so I wasn’t as productive as I would’ve liked to be. I realized towards the end of last week, that temperature played a factor in my concentration. Clearly, the colder it was, the shorter my attention span was. But it was too late to reconcile for that at that point, so I made with what little time I had left and did my best.

 

My marks this semester will be at their lowest yet; but then again, second year courses are more challenging than first year ones, so it comes to no surprise that the amount of effort required for this semester should be double that of last year’s. I’ll pass, but sadly I’ll have to let go of my ambition to get the same level of marks as in high school. But that’s life.

 

Amongst other things that have distracted me while studying, the following are the top 2:

 

AnimeNFO

AnimeNFO is an online Japanese radio broadcasting from either Europe or South America (not specific I know, the point is that it’s not from Japan) which broadcasts all sorts of Japanese music 24/7. I found the site while I was at work, and wanted some anime music to listen to. The music they play is completely user requested and offers everyone a chance to hear something new (even if it’s a really old song), which is the point of a radio. This site sort of re-lit my passion for Jap music because of just how fun the site was. Below is a screenshot of what the site page looks like:

 

AnimeNfo Radio V2 -- Your BEST source for Anime and Japanese music!_1276822076094

What’s good about the site is that it shows you the playlist, including current song, upcoming songs and recently played songs, plus the album art. That’s useful information because the thing people hate about the radio is hearing a good song but not knowing what it’s called or who it’s by. This way, once I come across a good song I’ll be able to find out what it’s called (and promptly obtain it via the Internet haha!)

 

The site also allows you to rate the songs that get played, and hence gives you a rough indication on how everyone has been reacting to that particular song. There’s also the option to add songs to your personal favourite list, but that’s only available after you donate money to them or rate a total of 500 songs, whichever comes first. Ah the joys of combining anime and radio together.

 

Check it out at: https://www.animenfo.com/

 

 

Angel Beats!

The last anime series I picked up just as semester ended was Angel Beats!. I hadn’t realized it at the time but it was actually the biggest thing hitting Japan at the moment. Anyway, the series is about a bunch of teenagers who have died and are taken to purgatory (the setting is a high school), where they are meant to live a satisfying life that they otherwise were unable to obtain while they were actually alive (hence dying as youth). The characters, on the other hand, recall how horrible their lives were and instead of trying to find satisfaction in purgatory, seek to rebel against god for the injustice that he has committed on them.

 

vlcsnap-2010-06-17-21h25m47s27

 

The series provides a wonderful balance between action, comedy, and especially the deep down personal side of the story, as each character talks about the way they died. It’s that last aspect that sort of appealed to me. And this is the second time that an anime has made me legitimately cry; the first was “Voices of a Distant Star”. Anyway here’s the scene that made me cry:

 

 

Yui, the pink-haired girl, was my favourite character, mostly due to her cuteness, which was probably why I cried haha!

 

The anime is really popular and appealing also due to the fact that they’ve marketed it really well. Music has been a really strong point of this anime, the opening and ending theme hit no. 3 on the Oricon charts in its first week, as well as a number of other songs listed under the band name “Girls Dead Monster”. Wacko name for a band yeah; but three of their songs also hit the charts that same week, they ranked like below 10. But as you can see, a single anime managed to secure 4 slots of the Japanese music charts in a single week, now that’s popularity. The band technically exists within the anime itself, but they did make a real version of the band, using the same singer. Here is their first PV and also the song I’ve been obsessed over for a while now:

 

Looks like I’ve gotten back into Jap music now; probably push aside the K-Pop a bit. I realise now that the major appeal that J-Pop has to me is the strong vocals combined with an equally strong bass, makes for awesome music!

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[J-Pop] Aqua Timez – Velonica

 

..::Includes Lyrics, Translations and Downloads::..

 

“Velonica” is the 9th single from the ever-popular J-Rock band Aqua Timez and they are very fortunate to have this song being used as the 9th opening for the popular anime Bleach. “Velonica” is slightly unlike Aqua Timez’s more recent singles such as “Niji” and “Natsu no  Kakera”. The lyrics are of a slightly more darker theme and has bass and melody to match. We finally see more of the rapping style from Aqua Timez in this song; the verses are rapped out, followed by a slow pre-chorus and then a strong techno and up-beat chorus.

 

The song does well to maintain a nice long chorus, which gives listeners more to remember subconsciously and hum. Of course due to the rap element in the song, there is less of the rock element but a guitar bass still keeps the rock mood there. A definite must-have for Aqua Timez fans; and for newcomers, do not be fooled into thinking that all Aqua Timez songs are like this, they all vary.

 

Here is the anime opening sequence for the song:

 

 

 

 

Here are the lyrics and translations. Please remember these are my fifth translations only.

Romaji Lyrics

 

Zasetsu mamire ryuukou no magire
Shiawase na furi wo shite utau
Motto hashire to iikikashite
Mubou ni mo sotto kazakami he
Kita michi wo ichibetsu yutori wa gomen
Shimensoka sansen ni tsugu ONE GAME
“Yama ari tami ari gake ari”
Chiri wa tsumotte iku

 

Hateshinai tabi no tochuu de
Machi no hazure ni tachiyoru
Tsukareta ryouashi wo
Sotto nagedashite nekorobu to
Kurikaesareru asai nemuri
Nando mo onaji ano yokogao
Nando mo onaji ano kotoba wo
“Ikiteru dake de kanashii to omou no wa watashi dake nano?” to

 

Tabako no kemuri ga chuu wo uneri
Utsuro ni kieru kitto mada chikara naki osanai hibi ni

 

Minakute ii kanashimi wo mitekita kimi wa ima
Koraenakute ii namida wo koraete sugoshiteru
Honto no koto dake de ikite yukeru hodo
Bokura wa tsuyokunaisa tsuyokunakute ii ii?

 

Mochiageta mabuta sekai wa haru da
Sakura iro no kaze wo kakiwakete
Haruka kanata he mukau tochuu
Kono na no hana hatake ni kimi wa ita no kana
Kono sora ni tori no shiroi habataki wo
Boku ga sagasu ma kitto
Kimi wa daichi ni mimi wo sumashi
Ari no kuroi ashioto wo sagashitan darou na

 

Piero no you na kamen wo hai de
Taiyou ni wasurerareta oka ni tachi

 

Tsuki no hikari wo abite fukaku iki wo suu
Sara no wareru oto mo donari goe mo nai sekai
Nukumori ga nakutatte ikite wa yukeru sa
Dakedo bokura ikiteru dake jya tarinakute

 

Mebuku daichi ya buatsui miki ya
Kiesaru niji ya sugisaru hibi ya
Yozora no SPEAKER shiki no fushigi ga
Oshiete kureta shinjitsu wo sagashi tsuzukeru bokura ni

 

Doko made tabi wo shite mo inochi no hajimari wa
Ikite aisaretai to nai ta hitori no akago
Koko de wa nai doko ka wo mezasu riyuu to wa
Kokoro de wa nai doko ka ni kotae wa nai to shiru tame

 

 

 

English Translations

 

 

Stained by frustration and confused by fashion,
I pretend to be happy and sing.
I run recklessly and gracefully
further on towards the wind.
I glance back at the path I came from
while everyone betrays me, and the ONE GAME that follows conflict.
“There are mountains, valleys and cliffs”
and the dust keeps piling up.

 

Along the way of my never-ending journey,
I stop by at the edge of town.
Both of my tired feet silently gave way
and I lie down
to keep falling into a shallow sleep.
It’s that same face every time.
It’s those sane words every time.
“Am I the only one who thinks living is sad?”

 

The tobacco smoke that lingers in the air
disappears into emptiness in the days when I’m still young and weak

 

You witness the sadness that you shouldn’t be seeing
And hold back tears that you should be crying.
We’re living by truth alone
but we’re not strong so is it okay to be weak? Is it?

 

I open my eyes and the world is Spring.
The cherryblossom-coloured wind pushes through
along the way as I head far far away.
I wonder if you were in this field of vegetables.
I search for the white fluttering
of birds in this sky.
You opened your ears to the ground
and searched for the blank trail of ants, didn’t you?

 

I tear off my clown-like mask
as I stand on a hill which the sun forgot.

 

The moonlight washes over me and I take a deep breath.
In a world where’s no smashing plates or angry voices
I’ll keep on living even if there’s no warmth.
However, simply living isn’t enough for us.

 

The budding ground, the massive trunk,
the vanishing rainbow, the passing days,
the night sky speaker, the wonders of the four seasons.
They all teach me to continue searching for the truth.

 

No matter how far I journey it’s like the start of life,
I’m a lonely baby wanting to live and be loved.
The reason we keep leaving here for somewhere else
is to realize there’s no answer other than in the heart.

 

 

 

Download

 

You may download the full single from my website here:

 

http://www.divineiniquity.net/music/aquatimez_velonica.html