Perfume – ⊿ [3rd Studio Album]

July 7, 2009 at 1:47 am (Perfume) (, )

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Perfume’s 3rd studio album, entitled ⊿, was released on 07.08.09. The singles released before the album are as follows: love the world, Dream Fighter and ワンルーム・ディスコ. NIGHT FLIGHT was used in a Pino CM.

The album opens up with the introductory track, Take off. The song begins with a very spacey instrumental that takes the listener into an alternate world. Then the instrumenation becomes more aggressive and the girls count down. There are also a few background vocals that add to the whole spacey vibe of the song. It’s very short but really should have been extended into a full song because it commands attention and leaves the listener wanting more.

Then comes the cute song, love the world. Beginning the song is a sweet upbeat instrumental that will make the listener want to smile. The first verse follows and the vocals here sound great, complimenting the music perfectly and keeping the listener interested. As the song nears the chorus, the instrumentation takes a slightly new sound and the vocals are held strongly. The chorus is what really makes this song memorable with its slightly more upbeat and almost funky kind of dance sound. The girls’ vocals are slightly stronger and it ends very strongly with “chu chu chu, love love the world.” love the world is a very enjoyable track and it hasn’t lost any of its magic from its single release.

Up next is Dream Fighter, which picks up the energy a little bit. The song opens up with a part of the chorus and the girls’ vocals here sound awesome, really suiting the coolness of the music. The slightly higher notes are handled well and when they sing “Dream Fighter,” it really stands out, catching the listener’s ear. Then the instrumentation takes a sort of spiraling aggression, which spices things up a little more. The verses feature a more relaxing atmosphere but the listener still is hooked by the girls’ vocals. Dream Fighter is still one of Perfume’s strongest singles and it fits very strongly on this album.

edge (⊿-mix) is the album’s fourth track. It opens up with that cool instrumental that it used to and the listener can hear where certain parts were added that vary from the original. It kind of gives the song another level and since the main focus of the song is the instrumentation, it only adds to the enjoyment. When the first verse comes in, everything is like it used to and that’s a strong decision since their vocals here are great, particularly Kashiyuka. Basically, at every opportunity of pure instrumentation, there is some sort of change that really surprises the listener since some parts sound extremely aggressive while others sound cool and spacey. This new mix of edge gives the song a litle more energy and really brings that addictive instrumental to life, renewing the listener’s interest in the song.

NIGHT FLIGHT is the strongest song on ⊿ so it’s no surprise that it was chosen in a Pino CM. The song begins with a really cool instrumental with the girls saying “make a night flight” and “have a nice flight.” Then the excitement comes out even more when the first verse arrives. Here, the vocals are excellent and really catch the listener’s ear. It has a sort of cute vibe to it but a mature cute vibe that will leave the listener wanting more. The repeating “3,2,1” section really stands out and is one of the most memorable parts of the song. The chorus sounds awesome with every line beginning with “make a night flight” or “have a nice flight.” Without a doubt, this is one of Perfume’s strongest songs and it really shines on this album.

Now things slow down for Kiss and Music. The song starts off with a very trippy instrumental that is very ear-catching and slowly the beats creeps in. When the first verse starts, the girls’ vocals sound great and just looming behind the instrumentation is a slightly sexual atmosphere and it’s somewhat stimulating. It’s almost a feeling of gradually melting and just falling into the song. What really stands out in the chorus is the line “your eyes, your hands, your lips, love me.” There is almost a pleading in their voices so the listener can really believe the emotions in the song. It’s a shame that the song is so short because it definitely is one of the album’s strongest tracks.

Zero Gravity is one of the album’s true gems. Opening up the song is the sound of waves and then the instrumentation comes in, staying very much spacey and fitting with the title. The chorus then follows and it has a cute feeling to it, reminiscent of love the world. Like that song, the music and vocals really catch the listener’s ear and demands attention. The following instrumentation has a sort of video-game feeling to it which stands out proudly before the first verse. With its relaxing atmosphere, the music here carries an element of magic and the girls shine along. Zero Gravity is such a good song and shows Nakata and the girls’ true power.

I still love U is the eighth song on the album. The song starts off with a really cool instrumental that has kind of an old school vibe that has been brought back to life. Then the music becomes more diverse and introduces the listener to a whole new level. On the verses, the girls sound great and they fit with the music perfectly. The chorus has a cute feeling to it and it really stands out when they sing “I still love you.” It sounds really good and a strong way to promote the album with a PV.

The best thing isn’t as strong as the preceding songs.A really cool instrumental begins the song and it gives the image of falling into a wonderland and a brand new world unfolding in front of the listener’s eyes. Finally the first verse comes in and unfortunately, it’s not as engaging as the instrumentation so the music kind of pushes the girls to the background. This continues onto the chorus with the music overpowering the girls. After a string of such amazing songs, it’s kind of disappointing.

Speed of Sound is one of Nakata’s usual songs where the focus is on the instrumentation rather than the vocals. Here, the track is almost entirely instrumentation with the girls popping to say a few words here and there. Luckily the music is so good and it really carries the listener effortlessly from beginning to end. It’s very enjoyable and it’s nice to hear this song pick up the listener’s interest after the last song.

The album’s semifinale is ワンルーム・ディスコ. That opening instrumental is just so amazing and it really should have been the basis for the whole song. The rest of the song has more of a cute vibe to it. It sounds slightly better here in the context of the album than from its single release. It’s cute and sweet but it’s just not as strong as it could have been.

Closing the album is 願い (Album-mix). What makes this different from the original version is the addition of the piano, which actually softens the song up and gives it a slightly more emotional feel. When this was released as the B-side of Dream Fighter, it didn’t really stand out but the piano really gives the song a new life that makes it much more enjoyable. It’s a good way to close the album and leave the listener with a dreamy feeling.

Album Ranking: A

Although I was hesistant to see the final product of this album after hearing the previews, they did not do the full songs justice. It’s true that Perfume slowed things down from the album and a little more upbeat aggressive songs would have been nice. Nonetheless, songs like NIGHT FLIGHT, love the world, Dream Fighter and edge (⊿-mix) all have their special appeal to them that keep the listener satisfied in that department. Kiss and Music, I still love U and Speed of Sound also shine as new tracks and fill in the magic for the slower songs. Nakata brought some very strong material on this album and the girls bring the songs to life, making ⊿ a succesful final product.

Most Memorable 6 Songs: NIGHT FLIGHT / Kiss and Music / Zero Gravity / edge (⊿-mix) / Dream Fighter / love the world

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1 Comment

  1. jpoptoday said,

    I can’t wait to get ⊿. He he.. I like typing that album title.. 「⊿.」
    I’m gonna order one of their CDs on Yes Asia when I get some $.

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