Thursday, April 7, 2016
Kasumi Matsumura -- Solid desire
As a big fan of 90s anime songs, it was quite thrilling to discover such a great song as “Solid desire” a couple of years ago. Singer Kasumi Matsumura (松村香澄) was no stranger to me, even though I only knew one of her songs, “MASK”, which also happened to be a duet with fellow anime songs singer Masami Okui (奥井雅美).
In the 90s, when it comes to anime songs, King Records was one of the greatest, if not the greatest, record label around. Besides the aforementioned Kasumi Matsumura and Masami Okui, but also Yoko Takahashi (高橋洋子), Hiroko Moriguchi (森口博子) and my beloved Megumi Hayashibara (林原めぐみ) were big stars of the label’s anime songs section.
About the anisong genre, one interesting thing is how it became more mainstream-sounding with the passing of years. At first, and I’m talking about early 90s here, the songs were quite disjointed with the period they were released (they sounded more like 80’s J-Pop than what was actually being played in the mainstream scene), but starting around the mid-90s famous anime themes were on par with J-Pop trends, such as Eurodance, for example.
Back to Kasumi Matsumura, she was probably the least famous among the names I mentioned before. As far as I know, she only released one studio album (which was more a compilation of previously released singles), called “KASUMI the serious joker”, and some singles, but her career as a singer never really took off. Even information about her is very scarse these days.
Besides “MASK”, which I consider more a Masami Okui song than a Kasumi Matsumura one (it’s an unfair notion, I know), “Solid desire” became my favorite song from the girl. It’s that typical song from an adventure/fighting anime series (in this case, “Shadow Skill: The Movie” [影技 SHADOW SKILL], which is an OVA series, if I’m not wrong) that makes a teenage boy feel pumped up. And, well... I may not be a teenage boy anymore, but I still like this nostalgic and edgy sound.
Personally, I find the chorus quite powerful, and I also like how the melodic guitar hook follows the chorus pattern. Other interesting things are the sharp synths in the arrangement (they’re kind of muffled and not in your face like most songs from its time, but they’re still there) and also the very active background singers. As for Kasumi, her vocals are suitable for the type of strenght required by the song.
It’s a pity the girl didn’t achieve more fame at the time. As I could see, she still performs for small audiences, though. Maybe one day she gets to performs “Solid desire” live (I’d love to see it). As a side note, she's as beautiful and classy as ever.
“KASUMI the serious joker” was released in March 1999. I don’t know if “Solid desire” was released as a single at the time of the anime’s release, but it was included in some Shadow Skill’s soundtracks. Based on this, I think the song is probably from 1995 or 1996. However, based on this inconsistency, I just decided to follow the album release and put the 1999 tag.
"KASUMI the serious joker" (funny name for an album)