Zwei – Re:Set

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Tracklist:

  1. Re:Set
  2. Junjou Spectra
  3. MONSTER
  4. Genei no Mobius
  5. GATEWAY LOVE
  6. Occultics no Majou (Zwei Ver.)
  7. Mephistopheles no Mukou
  8. Kaze no Senritsu
  9. Ano Natsu no Hi no Omoide
  10. Sora no Shizuku
  11. Innana no Mita Yume
  12. Kakuchou Place
  13. Koyubi no Paradox
  14. Forever More

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1. Re:Set

Zwei stsrts off their album with the title track, which is a pretty experimental synth-rock track. Megu is sounding pretty good on the bass and Ayumu is using all the facets of her voice, ranging from quiet intensity in the verse, to aggressive power in the chorus. And her upper register is really good too and blends well. This song is just filled with energy and is so unlike anything I’ve heard of theirs before, I can’t help but love it! An excellent start to the album!

2. Junjou Spectra

Now we get into the single tracks. As the A-side of their 5th 5pb single, Junjou Spectra is a perfect example of what a rock anison should be; it has the perfect mix of guitars, synths and piano, and is super catchy to boot! I can’t get enough of Ayumu belting out those high notes, and with some fast bass playing by Megu thrown into the mix, the result is a really strong second track!

3. MONSTER

Talk about a wanting a strong start for their album! The B-side from “Kakuchou Place”, MONSTER is a truly rocking and butt-kicking song! I worship Ayumu’s vocals so much in this song, they are full of grit and passion, and that “break out.. monster” is so dark and amazing. This is probably their heaviest song with much more guitar focus and only a little synths, and Megu gets some sweet rolling basslines throughout the song! Such an epic track!

4. Genei no Mobius

Genei no Mobius is another of the new songs on the album. While retaining a bit of rock in its style, overall it’s much more of a synth-driven song. It’s great that we can still hear Megu’s bass underneath instead of being overpowered by synths, but Ayumu sounds less intense than previous songs. It just doesn’t have the energy as the previous songs and ends up not as interesting. Kind of average.

5. GATEWAY LOVE

Haha a pretty sexy intro there. Originally the B-side from Innana no Mita Yume, GATEWAY LOVE takes an electropop style which is an interesting change, but I would really prefer guitars from them instead of synths. Ayumu’s singing fast in the chorus which is cool and we hear a few bass solos, but still it’s not as strong as their ani-rock songs.

6. Occultics no Majou (Zwei Ver.)

This song is a “self-cover” I suppose, as Ayumu originally performed it in her solo career. There’s some strings and chants going on which is pretty cool, but synths have more of a presence than guitar. Probably the Zwei Ver. part of this song is that Megu’s playing the bass and it’s a bit louder than the original, but I was disappointed that there weren’t really any significant arrangement changes. But not too bad.

7. Mephistopheles no Mukou

In this next song, we come back to ani-rock. Coming from a joint single, Mephistopheles no Mukou is a fast rock song with a little string influence. It uses more typical rock instruments, with heavier guitars and some metal drums. The song definitely has lots of energy throughout in both vocals and instrument playing, but again it doesn’t hold my interest as much as the first three tracks.

8. Kaze no Senritsu

Kaze no Senritsu is the A-side from the single single of the era. It has a great rock sound, and you can hear Megu’s bass rumbling underneath as well. I love some of the transitions in the song, like the short riff before the chorus. And it’s got a cool guitar solo as well, which is sweet because Zwei don’t usually have particularly good guitar solos. Ayumu’s sounding full of passion as well, yikes this is a great song!

9. Ano Natsu no Hi no Omoide

At track nine we get the first ballad of the album, which is a slow, piano-driven and surprisingly bright piece. The arrangement is ok but nothing great, but my main qualm with it though is that Ayumu’s voice (which is perfectly suitable on Zwei’s other tracks) sounds too strong here. It would be great if she toned it down a bit or switched to upper register now and then or something. That stringsy outro is really nice though.

10. Sora no Shizuku

Originally the B-side from Kaze no Senritsu, Sora no Shizuka is a slow and heavy rock song. It’s got a darker tone, and features lots of guitar with a little piano, strings and synth to add to the mood here and then. This is probably also my favourite Megu track from as you can really hear her bass rumbling away and driving the song along. Apart from a short and unusually light part in the bridge, Sora no Shizuku is filled with a fierceness and grit that I’m loving. Another excellent track!

11. Innana no Mita Yume

A delicate combination of strings, piano and clarinet opens this synthy anison track. I like the violins floating over the synth stream, giving a slightly calming touch to the song, and of course those choir chants are awesome! It’s great the song goes a little more rock oriented during the chorus, but there is no Megu to be seen (or heard) anywhere. However, it is the strongest of their synth-based songs, and is a good listen overall.

12. Kakuchou Place

Another of their A-sides, Kakuchou Place bursts in with an attention grabbing melodic guitar line backed by guitars and synths. It uses the effective soft-loud technique of many anime songs, which provides nice contrast in the verse, while the chorus is all power power power of Ayumu’s spunky performance! The repeated themes between chorus and verse add to the catchiness of the song as well. Megu gets really interesting parts in this song too. Another winner of a track!

13. Koyubi no Paradox

Their debut single with 5pb, this track is pretty synth heavy, although it also features light guitars. However, it’s a lot safer than their later tracks, and doesn’t hold my interest as much. Ayumu shows some good tone in here, but unfortunately Megu seems to be MIA in this song. It’s got a certain catchiness, but not enough that you want to listen to it to many more times. An average song overall.

14. Forever More

Of course it had to be a ballad to close the album. Or so I thought from the introduction, as the slow introduction turned into one of their fastest tracks! The B-side from Innana no Mita, Forever More is a hard-hitting rock song with nice dual guitar parts, and harmonious strings added in the chorus. Speaking of the chorus, I love it when it slows, which makes that part kind of epic. Forever More is pretty fun and likeable, and although not as strong as others, it definitely makes for a great way to finish the album.

As their first album from 5pb, Re:Set was certainly an interesting listen. I thought it was a rather polarising album; either the song was brilliant or kind of average, with not many in between. Ayumu sounded great throughout, and it was clear that Megu got more parts as the singles progressed. Things that I didn’t like thought were the lack of new material (raaa 5pb does this with all their artists, just piling the singles on) and the ballad (Ayumu’s got a strong voice so needs a power ballad, not an average wishy-washy one). Still, there were lots of fantastic songs, so a strong album overall.

Top Tracks:

  • MONSTER
  • Sora no Shizuka
  • Re:Set
  • Junjou Spectra
  • Kakuchou Place

Rating: 8.5/10

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