Arashi's regular edition is no slouch either as in addition to the two title tracks it includes an exclusive third track titled "Smile" as well as karaoke versions of all three songs. And while the RE's cover doesn't feature our favorite Johnny's group…..
…there's a great photo of them on the inside sleeve!
"Smile" somewhat reminds me of older Smap songs with its infectiously upbeat dreamy chorus and for the most part this track is performed as an ensemble vocal piece which is also reminiscent of Smap compositions of yesteryear. The harmonious chorus again shows off the great vocal chemistry Arashi has together and in particular I love the middle break where Riida's incomparable voice leads us into a slightly jazzy riff as the bassline seamlessly moves into a "walking" style for a brief but brilliant nuance here in the song. Arashi composers always seem to have the perfect balance within the group of dividing up vocal lines and the unmistakable presence of Riida's vocals are always given their due in feature lines at just the right moment for "dramatic" appeal.
Jacket A's DVD features the pv for "truth" and the cover which is a deep contrast to Jacket B's cover artwork is a perfect reflection of the moodiness and deep felt conviction that "truth" entails.
"truth" is also one of Arashi's most dazzling and visually stunning pvs to date and its direction really captures the dynamic feel of the song. An undeniable truth that all Arashi fans can agree on is that all five members are incredibly accomplished dancers each in their own right! The dance choreography here doesn't disappoint either as the track's moodyness and drive are expressed with pin point effectiveness! So much to be taken with here whether it be the haunting arrangement, well orchestrated vocals, or the sheer dark elegance of the pv itself.
Jacket B's limited edition DVD features the pv for "Kaze no mukou e" and my first reaction to seeing both LE covers was glee as the cover artwork unlike some of Arashi's previous multiple single releases, features a very different look here and very fittingly so as "Kaze no mukou e" is somewhat of a polar opposite of it's coupled with A side sister. I've always loved the soft pastel like colors which Arashi often sports and here it's a simple mix of stylish and cool!
Double A sides truly should stand out from one another and "Kaze no mukou e" is such a contrast to "truth" that I imagine that if someone not familiar with Arashi heard both songs back to back they may possibly think them to be from two entirely different groups. I always love seeing Ninokun on guitar or piano and here he struts his stuff in kakkoii goodness! And whether or not he's actually on the studio recording doesn't really matter as I'd just love to see Nino appear on stage with guitar in hand…leading off this vibrant tune as we all know he's very capable! "Kaze no mukou e" has somewhat of a "campfire" song feeling to it and the vibe here is one of euphoric emotions. I guess I'd describe this track as a jazzed up folk song and don't let the description "folk" fool you, this is definitely not a ballad by any means. Versus the serious tone of its predecessor "truth", "Kaze no mukou e" is the very embodiment of fun with a composition which is light hearted and gleeful. I'm not in particular a fan of rap music but I've come to love Shokun's raps so much and in a large way he's helped me to further enjoy and appreciate this art form. At first this particular rap in "Kaze no mukou" seemed a bit out of place but as usual Shokun wins me over as he does time and time again! ^-^
The pv presents a much simpler visual but is nonetheless effective in bringing to life the visuals well imagined for a song of this nature. The fun emotions and "lightness" of the song are captured beautifully here and the improvised feeling of the choreography throughout is also a deep contrast to "truth" which featured precise movements. A mixture of rotating camera scenes along with close ups carry the pv against a serene white atmosphere which gives the entire pv an uplifting appearance matching "Kaze no mukou e"'s vibe perfectly. I can't wait to see this song performed live in concert as I imagine a song of this nature will have the entire arena rocking in unison! ^-^
I love these images with the clouds flowing through the screen and in some way I think these would make great looking posters if only they could be blown up to that proportion.