I would like to give credit where credit is due. Videos are from YouTube and other sources such as NicoNico while Oricon rankings and other information are translated from the Japanese Wikipedia unless noted.

Monday, August 19, 2013

Megumi Nakajima -- TRY UNITE!

"Earworm" has been the word of the day to describe an infectiously popular song. One of those little bugs that has been tunneling through the windmills of my mind of late is Megumi Nakajima's (中島愛) 6th single "TRY UNITE!" which was also the opening theme for Season 1 of the 2012 anime, "Rinne no LaGrange"輪廻.のラグランジェ....LaGrange: The Flower of Rin-ne).

I only caught the pilot episode of the show involving some young women and their mecha, but "TRY UNITE!" has lasted far longer for me. Since my anime buddy was kind enough to give me a nice grouping of anison, this song has been getting the heavy rotation treatment on my computer. It's that cool dance club beat and Nakajima's soaring vocals that spawned the worm. Even more than it being a theme for an anime, I think it would be great to hear in a car roaring down a Tokyo expressway at night heading down for the bright lights of Shinjuku, Shibuya or's why I chose the above video in particular which has the full version of the song. Below is the opening of Season 1 from "Rinne no LaGrange".

After listening to this for the first time, my impression had been that it was created by a Shibuya-kei artist like Fantastic Plastic Machine. But it was actually written by Kenzo Saeki(サエキけんぞう) and composed by Rasmus Faber. Faber, who hails from Sweden and wears many hats including those of pianist, DJ and composer. He's also an anime fan who created a series of albums titled "Rasmus Faber Presents Platina Jazz"from 2009 which has covered anime songs performed in a jazz style with the help of Swedish musicians. This project eventually led to Faber writing his own tunes for Japanese singers, and then "TRY UNITE!"for Nakajima. The single was released in February 2012 and managed to go as high as No. 11 on Oricon.

This is the introspective ballad version of the song, again with Nakajima on vocals.

And just to show a bit of that "Platina Jazz", here is a special treatment of "Sailor Moon", since after all....she's the one.

And here is Faber introducing his tribute to the classic "Galaxy Express 999".

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