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.

Tuesday, November 29, 2016

trf -- Love & Peace Forever

The above is "Works - The Best of TRF" which was released back in 1998. Although trf at that point was doing a slow fade from the scene, I still grabbed this one since I had already gotten rather nostalgic about one of the prime actors during the Tetsuya Komuro(小室哲哉)stranglehold on J-Pop during those mid-90s.

One of the tracks on the 2-CD set which was the very first BEST compilation by the unit happened to be their 13th single from March 1996, "Love & Peace Forever". And man, it looks like nostalgia may be the overarching theme for this article. This time, it wasn't just Komuro handling words and music but he also had Takahiro Maeda(前田たかひろ)helping out on lyrics and Cozy Kubo(久保こーじ)providing a hand on the melody.

And the collaboration between Komuro and Kubo does show a difference. Instead of the usual dance techno that populates many a trf hit, there is a very sunny throwback to disco in "Love & Peace Forever" although the music video has YU-KI, DJ KOO and the rest of the gang look like a bunch of hippies on Phuket Island, and in other parts of the video, it looks like they raided a secondhand United Colours of Benetton store. Well, I guess the song is well titled then.

YU-KI's delivery of the refrain also seemed rather sing-song as if she were channeling her inner elementary school student. It kinda sums up this feeling of the past being seen through rose-coloured glasses. The overall message is one of chilling out, calling out to old friends and sloughing off the bad stuff, and perhaps for people of a certain generation (which would probably include me), it's a tempting invitation to go back to those old disco days. Certainly after hearing this song for the first time in so many years, it's a sense of compounded nostalgia as I listen to this 1990s "Love & Peace Forever" in the 2010s as it brings that feeling of the 1970s.

The song went Platinum as it peaked at No. 2. Apparently, "Love & Peace Forever" was the last single to feature the name of the band in small letters. From the next single forward, Komuro's group would go full caps...TRF. By the way, the video above has Ran Ran Suzuki(鈴木蘭々)and MAX doing their own karaoke cover.

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