[DRRR] Izaya’s second character song

The DuRaRaRa!!x2 Ketsu Bonus CD Vol.5 features Izaya and his brand-new character song and I cannot believe he is the one that gets to cover 勝手にしやがれ (Do as you please) by Kenji Sawada!! The DRRR team is a clever bunch, they knew exactly what they were doing when they were assigning this song to Izaya. It’s about breaking up, about being left behind and loneliness. And the cover just adds up perfectly. :’)

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To be fair, the whole song could strongly match Shizuo and Izaya regarding how we may or may not look at their relationship, but one thing becomes obvious either way: the hinting at their last battle especially with the lines

さよならというのもなぜか、しらけた感じだし
あばよとサラリと送ってみるか

Saying “goodbye” may be somewhat of a killjoy
so maybe I’ll just send you off with a “later

which clearly point out the parallel to the /sayounara-abayo/ moment in the series when Shizuo officially bids Izaya goodbye in order to finish him off for good. Izaya can’t properly deal with how even Shizuo is evolving and abandoning him, the one archenemy he always had is now lost to him too. The paradox “Shizuo-complex” , to quote Simon again, like so many times before.

/愛というのに照れてただけだよ/ “it was just that I was a little embarrassed of this thing called love” Simply put, this is exactly what Izaya might feel like and what his main problem is, as Shinra once pointed out. He’s afraid and unable to overtly and genuinely show affection towards someone so that he can protect his heart from getting hurt in any way. But ironically that is what hurts him the most in the end.

Do as you please becomes twice as sad when you apply the song lyrics to Izaya because he’s that sad individual who can’t break out of his vicious circle of loneliness. Sawada might have referred to being left by a beloved, for the information broker it gets so many more meanings… “looks like you’re leaving me after all” Does he mean Shizuo who he has become attached to against his will? Does he refer to his family? Or the life in Ikebukuro he must leave behind? Celty’s head and what is connected to it?

I’m not going into detail about all the lyrics even though they give a lot of insight and are beautiful but I just wanted to point out how glad I am that they chose this song for Izaya but I’m also upset because please, just let me rest from the pain (jk never stop the angst)! Maybe I’ll find some time to talk about the complete lyrics and my Izaya related interpretations some time soon…

 

[OST] Bungou Stray Dogs

Thank the gods for Taku Iwasaki, once again, as he delivers the BUNGOU STRAY DOGS Original Soundtrack 01. It’s the good old Iwasaki compositions we know, this time with less emphasis on the electro and all the more emphasis on the woodwind players. The saxophone strongly leads us through this album and it’s the best decision they could have made for an ost like this.

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The tracks that caught my attention the most in terms of new elements are:

  • Track #01 Good for Nothing performed by Lotus Juice who always brings across the Iwasaki atmosphere instantly since he’s usually making an appearance in his works in some way; by now Iwasaki without Lotus Juice just won’t feel right. It’s a rough staccato mix of saxophone and rap, a perfect way to start the album, an impact from the first note.
  • With track #12 Run, Atsushi! (走れ敦!) we are back to Iwasaki’s beautiful string ensemble that I love so very much, quick-paced and dramatic in a sense.
  • Track #17 Leaping Wings is performed by the Kaze LaLa Choir and it’s one of the most beautiful songs I’ve heard so far. The women’s graceful voices create such a soothing atmosphere and it’s something I didn’t expect to be in this series/on an ost like this. It has a completely Western touch and maybe that is why it fits in so well (because of the setting of BSD).
  • In #18 Eye of the Tiger, Lotus Juice performs once more. He is supported by rocking electronic guitar and synthesizer. This track uses a theme melody I can never get enough of, thus it easily became one of my favourite tracks.

I assume Iwasaki and his crew will also take it upon themselves to create the soundtrack for the second season of Bungou Stray Dogs in Fall Season 2016 and I’m already thrilled to hear more jazzy tunes from one of the Japanese masters of composition. In fact, I was even missing the one track that had become my favourite in a matter of seconds – the PV song. It also did play in the series itself so I’m certain it will be on the next ost. I’m keeping my fingers crossed but for now I’m just extremely grateful for these new compositions and will continue to indulge in their beauty.

9/10

[Koyasu Road] Kapaeru

Takehito Koyasu, the seiyuu ruling over my heart. Come rain, come shine, come snow, come sleet, for Koyasu the show must go on and I’m willing dig into all of his work. Here I will list my impressions.

This time I’ll comment on Kapaeru from Dororon Enma-kun Meeramera.

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Kapaeru, like his name and appearance suggest, is a Kappa youkai who works as an informant. Like most of the male characters in the most recent adaptation of Dororon Enma-kun, Kapaeru is a rather lecherous individual that happily joins in when it’s about chasing skirts. In the 2011 anime he is reduced to the role of the team’s mascot character and comedic relief, but when he does appear he does his job well. As much as I adore Koyasu’s deep voice, his comedic voice acting is fantastic as well and just stresses his amazing range. And although he is matching the pitch according to the humour of the situation, for Kapaeru he mostly uses his high cutesy voice with a Kansai dialect. Recently he hasn’t taken too many roles with higher, more child-like voices, so in Dororon Enma-kun it’s always a comedic delight to listen to him. In episode 7 there is a scene where Yukihime and Kapaeru are ice skating but then he gets slapped away by a youkai. He flies away shouting “Triple axel~!” in a graceful, defeated voice but in the next scene he suddenly comes back, completely pissed off, asking who kicked him in the face and the sudden shift from his cute to his angry voice à la Bobobo made me laugh so hard-I will be forever grateful for that moment.

With the rest of the cast he also produced the hilarious character song album “Showa Hit Studio” that partly served as the anime’s background music. In the trio song “Enma’s real, real hard work” with Kappei Yamaguchi and Minoru Inaba he sings in his Kapaeru voice while in his solo song “Affair” he switches back to his deeper voice he often used when performing songs like “Sora no Soko” (Weiß Kreuz). The contrast is hilarious and especially when regarding the fact that Kapaeru is supposed to sing the song, the whole situation becomes twice as overdramatic. If Dororon Enma-kun Meeramera is a good anime or not is another question I won’t get invested in today but the Koyasu audio material we got from the series was definitely something I’m not complaining about.

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[Koyasu Road] Koumei

Takehito Koyasu , the seiyuu that has gradually become my favourite seiyuu. I can be lured into watching anything with him in it just so that I may be able to hear one line of his beautiful voice, ranging from hentai to shoujo genre and whatever else is out there. Here I will list my impressions.

This time I will talk about Koumei Shoukatsuryou from Koutetsu Sangokushi.

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He is the protagonist’s master and from the first second you see him you know, he’s either the bad guy or at least has some evil intentions. But the only one who doesn’t seem to notice that is his disciple Rikuson who greatly looks up to him. And if Koumei isn’t the target of jealousy or loathing from the enemy empire he is like the almighty item in this anime. Everybody wants to gain his respect, serve him or belong to him. He is also so powerful that most characters make him out to be untouchable/invincible. With his graceful appearance he easily fools the people around him, hiding his scheming nature. He just really enjoys toying with people apparently. Everybody wants Koumei, but he doesn’t accept anyone (except his disciple in the end for whom he becomes “the darkness” but Rikuson still decides to sacrifice his life for his master; that’s true love for you). The voice pitch Koyasu chose for Koumei is the one I usually call his “calm bishounen voice“, it stays deep and in control, doesn’t really range much, maybe gets a little flirtatious every now and then and is usually used by him when voicing beautiful, androgynous men. It fit Koumei a lot because his character was truly always in control of the situation and seemed to know what the outcome would be like at all times. I liked Koumei because of his sly nature and was glad that he didn’t die at the end. The way he makes everyone gay for him is outstanding and yes, that Koyasu voice was music to my ears…!

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