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Tales of Innocence: Follow the Nightingale - KOKIA :: Review by Lex

Tales of Innocence: Follow the Nightingale - KOKIA Album Title: Tales of Innocence: Follow the Nightingale - KOKIA
Record Label: Victor Entertainment
Catalog No.: VTCL-35011
Release Date: November 21, 2007
Purchase: Buy at CDJapan


This is KOKIA's 16th single and it was released on November 21, 2007. This single reached #33 on the Oricon Weekly Charts and it has sold 11,912 copies. The title track was used as the opening theme song for the video game Tales of Innocence while the B-side was the ending theme. Here are my thoughts about the release, originally published in my J-Pop music blog Beyond the Sea.

"Follow the Nightingale" is a wonderful and absolutely mesmerizing breath of fresh air after KOKIA's somewhat lackluster album aigakikoeru ~listen for the Love~. She utilizes all of her unique characteristics as a singer, songwriter, and composer and puts them all into full effect. The music is very dramatic and it ranges from fast paced string sections to slow, ethereal woodwinds and piano. The music has many faces and portrays several different emotions, all complete with fluent transitions.

The chorus is the most striking feature of the song because the lyrics are sung backwards. "Attamijahahira tagonomarakikota" is an example of this. She certainly loves to use this unique writing style since it was also used in Cyouwa oto ~with reflection~ and KOKIA is her real name, Akiko, when the katakana is backwards as well. For those who didn't know, she is trained in opera and it's huge a surprise that she actually sings using her alto voice during the bridge, something that she rarely does. The overall presentation of this song is mind-blowing and can be a little intimidating if you�re not fond of KOKIA or her music.

The B-side is a little more user friendly as it contains a strong band arrangement along with calming strings. "Say Goodbye & Good Day" is a gorgeous song that's very relaxing, but also has a nice pace. I loved the laid back electric guitar and drums because they just compliment KOKIA's gentle vocals so well. The music and vocals really reminded me of past songs like Kawaranai Koto ~since1976~ because of a more prominent use of the electric guitar. She still makes everything sound fresh thanks to a catchy and upbeat chorus.

Overall Score: 10/10