Immediately when I saw the cover it reminded me of the mysterious case of "muddy" Nacchi which occurred back in December of 2001. :O
The album opens with "How to use Loneliness" and you're immediately engulfed in dance r&b heaven! When it comes to Gocchin, Tsunku really writes a different breed of song for her as opposed to other H!P solo acts and groups, a trend that has been going on for quite some time now for Gocchin's releases. And this sometimes more American sounding musical approach leaves behind that true "J-Pop" sound opting for a different type of sophisticated style which suits Gocchin perfectly. While other H!P members may perform some of the songs contained on this album in concerts they are indeed a custom fit for no one else but Gocchin. Tsunku who acted as producer of this album also wrote all of the lyrics & music.
The previously released single tracks "SOME BOYS! TOUCH", "Glass no pumps", and "Secret" seamlessly blend in with the new album tracks while this entire album stays true to it's deep r&b roots delivered with a cutting edge. "City Wind" is a heavily sensuous track and as you continue to listen to each next song it becomes clearly apparent that an album truly can be "sexy." Gocchin's vocals ooze sensuality with each note as her vocal styling over the years has really grown from being more on the cute side into a fully blown adult contemporary voice which commands each track with deep conviction. Back when "SOME BOYS! TOUCH" was released as a single it took me a bit of awhile to appreciate this song. I originally found the verses to be a bit odd and ultimately it was the chorus with all of its hooks that eventually won me over. And I was never really that fond of her single "Glass no pumps" which I used to think had too much of a simplicity about it's melody and it never really caught on with me but even this track somehow with it being surrounded by such great r&b songs, it now sounds right at home and much better. Track 7 "DAYBREAK" provides yet another realm to this album by inviting us into the cool sounds of contemporary jazz. The sweet sounds of acoustic piano, intricate drumming, horn section, smooth percussion, and walking bass line lend themselves into creating one of the more "mature" sounding songs that H!P has released to date. Gocchin provides the perfect sophistication in her tone and delivery and by my first listen I was finding this track to be one of my favorites. This song is really like a whole different world of H!P and it's great to hear yet another aspect of Tsunku's song writing versatility. Clearly Tsunku has touched upon the jazz genre before as he did with "Mr. Moonlight~ai no big band~" as well as others but never quite on this level before and I really consider this to be the break out track on this album. When it comes to my favorite overall non single track on this album it has to be track 8 "WOW suteki!" as it stands as one of the most bright and "fun" songs presented here. With a highly optimistic message and happy upbeat arrangement "WOW suteki!" seems to soar above a lot of the album's tracks and by that I'm not talking in terms of better song but rather it's "walking on the clouds" type of feel. 🙂 Gocchin's single "Secret" chimes in as the 9th track and unlike "Glass no pumps" which grew on me here, "Secret" was love at first listen when I first bought this single when it was released. This song really could have been the perfect bookend for this album if it had been selected as the final track as it really has a sound of closure and the fact that this song was used during the credits of a few HM@ episodes may also be a subliminal message making me feel this. lol! Gocchin has released so many sweet ballads over the years and I see "Secret" taking its place amongst the best of her discography. The honor of closing the album goes to the track "LIFE" and while I did view "Secret" as being the perfect song for this task, "LIFE" has made me rethink this as it further helps you to wind down and works great as a transition song from "Secret" to the album's closing. This song has a very understated arrangement and Gocchin's soft vocals throughout are almost like a "good night" or "farewell" bidding to the listener and acts as a great contrast to the rest of the album.
It doesn't appear that anyone has uploaded the new versions of these PVs yet (and my computer's too ancient so I can't do it myself :P) so I just included the original version which is also an excellent example of "How to use SEXY." But hopefully someone will upload these new versions soon!