K-ON! OP&ED: Girls of Rock N’ Roll
Just got the OP and ED CDs for K-ON! (available in 320 kbps mp3s at your friendly neighborhood Nipponsei) and while I wasn’t blown away by either, I was completely satisfied with both of them.
Let’s start with the ED “Don’t say lazy.” As I’ve mentioned before, this song is pretty much the best part of the entire show. After watching the first episode, I downloaded an mp3 rip of the TV version and it was the only song I would listen to for days. Now I have the complete version, and it’s essentially more of the same. The song essentially follows the same musical pattern as the TV version with a keyboard solo in the middle. This is pretty common for most songs, especially anime ones, but it feels more obvious in this case. I think part of it is because the guitar riff is pretty repetitive and distorted strangely. The keyboard solo isn’t bad, but suffers from being too short and having a very shrill sound that is a little painful to listen to. However, the strong point of this song is Hikasa Yoko, Mio’s seiyuu, and her excellent voice. There are few Japanese women who can sing rock songs well, and after only two songs I am convinced she is definitely one of them.
Moving on to the next song on the single, “Sweet Bitter Beauty Song.” The instrumentals and vocals for this song are definitely stronger than “Don’t say lazy.” There is also a proper guitar solo in this. In many ways, it’s a much better song than “Don’t say lazy.” However, I don’t like it as much. I think it’s because it doesn’t match the characters’ image. Listening to this song reminded me of Pat Benatar’s “Heartbreaker,” at times which is almost the polar opposite of these moeblobs. In any case, I really enjoyed both songs, and hope for more like this if they decide to make character CDs
On the other hand, the OP single, “Cagayake! GIRLS,” was your typical, sugary, upbeat, J-pop. This song is sung by Toyosaki Aki, Yui’s seiyuu, and there is really nothing special about it. Much like Yui’s character, it’s happy, silly, and shallow. Based on the translations from fansubs and the little bit of Japanese I can pick up, it’s all about happiness and girls being girls. There’s nothing wrong with this, and frankly I usually don’t really pay attention to the lyrics, so it’s fine. The best part of the song is the solo where the characters count off and each play a little riff. The only problem was that there were points where the solos overlapped, and it sounded kind of messy. This is especially apparent for the bass solo, which is mixed in really softly and can only be heard clearly near the end. This may have been done to give the song a more amateur feel, but because the rest of the song feels professionally done, it sounds odd. However, I doubt this will bother me if I listen to it casually.
The final song of the single is “Happy!? Sorry!!” There is not too much to say about it as it is just another upbeat J-pop song. It is pretty generic sounding, and reminds me of Hidamari Sketch for some reason. I didn’t particularly like it as I’ve heard too many songs like this in the past. Some people might dig it. I don’t.
Nothing much in terms of extras. Karaoke versions for all the songs and a booklet with lyrics. However, I liked how they included images of the different girls, such as the opening image. Some of the art is pretty cute, and I have included the images of the other (inferior) girls below for your archiving purpose. Until next time, stay cool readers.