Meisa Kuroki – hellcat

February 12, 2011 at 5:45 pm | Posted in Meisa Kuroki | 2 Comments
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  1. Hear the alarm?
  2. Like This
  3. Bad Girl
  4. Criminal
  5. No, no, no
  6. SEX
  7. Lost
  8. THIS IS CRAZY

Meisa Kuroki is a model/actress turned singer and hellcat is her first mini-album. I first heard of Meisa when I was looking through some blogs back in 2009. Someone said that she reminded them of Namie Amuro which had an influence on my decision to check out the mini-album. I’m always skeptical of models/actresses trying to start a career in music so I went into the mini-album not knowing what to expect.

Hear the alarm? starts with a delicious synth line that leads into Meisa’s vocals which are smooth and cool. She sounds sexy which matches the hot beat of this track. The verses are great with edgy synths and there’s a lot of English used which sounds really good, “I can tell what you’re thinking/I can see it in your eyes.” Even though the verses are hot the chorus is even better with Meisa asking “baby, do you hear the alarm?” I can’t get over how good the composition is and it’s definitely one of the elements that make this song a success. It’s somewhat repetitive but the breakdown in the bridge adds a nice twist to it. This is an excellent opening track and it’s much better than what I expected. I don’t like the way Like This starts with Meisa saying “bounce!/bounce!/so do you like this?” Its R&B oriented and the beat is pretty good but the verses aren’t that interesting. The song does get a whole lot better during the chorus because Meisa’s vocals are more energetic and it has a great flow. It’s upbeat, catchy and she sounds great. The music fades out after the chorus before it moves on to the next verse. For some reason the second verse sounds a bit better than the first but what saves this song is the catchy chorus.

Bad Girl brings the heat back with its attention grabbing intro which has a dark electro vibe. It’s aggressive and Meisa performs with a ton of attitude. She sounds much better on this track than she did on the previous one. The synths in the verses are dark and I like the dramatic backing vocals in the pre-chorus, “you can’t escape from yourself now.” When the song enters the chorus the synths change to a higher tone, Meisa sounds fierce and the English lyrics are very catchy, “face to face” and “no one knows.” Distorted backing vocals repeat “bad girl” for the bridge and they’re accompanied by heavy synths. Criminal blends rock and dance together as it starts off with drums that move into gritty synths and an electric guitar. Meisa’s vocals in the verses aren’t very energetic but she sings with some aggression. She becomes livelier during the chorus when the arrangement picks up and the “crimi crimi criminal” parts are catchy. At the end of the chorus, the backing vocals blend with the “you’re gonna get arrested” line which gets on my nerves. It just sounds awkward and ruins the feel of the track. Furthermore, Meisa tries out a high tone for the bridge which actually doesn’t sound too bad.

No, no, no marks the second half of the album and it returns to an R&B sound. This is one of my favourite tracks on the album and it consists of exotic drums and maracas. It’s a nice departure from the heavy electro influenced tracks. Meisa’s vocals sound really good during the verses as she performs in a deep and sultry voice. She switches to a high tone for the pre-chorus which contrasts nicely with the verses and the “go think it over, go and think it over” lines are pretty catchy. The chorus is infectious and Meisa’s vocals flow so naturally with the melody. It’s upbeat but has a nice laid back feel to it making it an easy track to get into. I was expecting SEX to be a hot up-tempo but it’s actually a mid-tempo. It’s a letdown because the song comes across as being dull when it should have been fierce. The verses are pretty good and I like her voice when she sings “it hurts so good.” What I don’t like about the song is the chorus. It’s too relaxed which makes it boring. The naughty lyrics help, “give me a taste (of your honey),” and “going crazy, cause I’m thinking ’bout SEX,” but not by much. The bridge is the most interesting part of the song and I wasn’t expecting a male vocalist to show up for it but his inclusion in the song made it a bit better. The song might have been more interesting if he was used for more than just the bridge.

Lost matches its title perfectly because it feels like Meisa didn’t know if she wanted this to be a ballad or a dance track. The arrangement consists of a piano and synths which sound alright but Meisa’s vocals do not flow well at all. The verses are sung quickly which doesn’t blend well with the piano melody and she hits some pretty bad high notes. The pre-chorus and chorus flow much better despite the awkward “take it back, take it back baby/are you feeling me? feeling me? oh” lines. This song does nothing for me and it’s the weakest one on the mini-album. Meisa returns to what she does best in THIS IS CRAZY, electronic dance music. This is what SEX should have sounded like. It’s not as upbeat as the other dance tracks but it’s composed of heavy synths and drums that catch your attention. Her vocals during the verses are cool and she sounds better than the last few songs. The chorus is edgy and her high register sounds great, “it’s time we realize THIS IS CRAZY.” The vocal layering at the end of the track is phenomenal and everything blends together perfectly.

Conclusion: hellcat ended up being a lot better than I thought it was going to be. Meisa doesn’t have the most extraordinary voice and there are a few moments where her vocals fall flat. Despite this, her voice is well suited for dance music. She got hooked up with great producers because the compositions on the mini-album are hot. Overall, this is a great start for a music career.

Recommended Tracks: No, no, no, THIS IS CRAZY, Bad Girl and Hear the alarm?

Rating

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2 Comments »

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  1. Heeeey I also reviewed this a week before you did, what a coincidence! Just like MAA’s Monkey Kingdom, I recently discovered that as well. It looks like we quit agree on hellcat right? Keep on going like this, I love it!

    Love, Jade

    • Thank you! I saw your post last week and wasn’t sure if I should post mine so soon after yours lol. It’s pretty funny that we both gave it the same rating.


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