A new album of Ayumi Hamasaki that really defines her ability to sing wonderful ballads even if it were the classical remix of her previous songs. This is a perfect album to get for your significant other for Valentine’s Day.
Who wouldn’t want to have this album that lists all the most beloved songs of Ayu’s recent albums. And to top it all off, the music used are from famous composers like Bach and Chopin to name a few.
01. Voyage [Johann Pachelbel: Canon in D major]
Voyage is the song used in a mini-movie by Ayu called 月に沈む (Tsuki ni Shizumi) which signifies love that transcends from one life to another. At the start, Canon in D Major plays with all its glory as the melody of Voyage merges with it. The blending of both the the classical music and Voyage is seamless, as if it just orchestrated version of the song. It made the song much lighter and hopeful, rather than helplessness and despair. A great way to start the album, making the listener happy like the true meaning of the song.
02. SEASONS [Antonin Dvorak: Going Home (Symphony No.9 in E minor “From the New World”<>]
Seasons is one of those songs that have been remixed over and over again. Some of the fans are complaining that this has been overused with all the remixed albums of Ayu. This might be true but this is still a piece of art. The song starts slow but picks up the tempo once Ayu sings and really livens up the whole music. This is one rendition that can interest those people who haven’t heard Ayu before.
03. Days [Antonio Vivaldi: Violin Concerto in F Minor, Op.8, No.4, RV 297, L’inverno” (Winter); II.Largo]
Days was first release as part of a winter ballad album and a very much loves song as well. This combination really emphasize the part that it is indeed a winder ballad and the loneliness of a winter ballad comes to life but it’s not at all heavy. It is still one of the best music combination in the album (next to Honey).
04. TO BE [Johann Sebastian Bach: The Well Tempered Clavier Book 1, Prelude No.1 in C m<>]
A piano opens this songs and then violin joins in for a peaceful tune that just relaxes anyone who listens to it. The piano continues alone while Ayu sings the song and it a simple song that focuses more on her singing capability before the violin joins in certain parts to tie it all up. A guitar also joins in the chorus to emphasize Ayu’s high notes that builds up until the end.
05. YOU [Christian Petzold, attributed to Johann Sebastian Bach: Minuet in G major]
This songs starts off like a song for the beach and then, Minuet in G major in violin enters in a slower pace. The overall feel of the song is fresh, as if you’re just enjoying the wind on a drive, or staring at the sea on a beach somewhere. The song is so masterfully made that it makes you imagine that you are with her, enjoying on a vacation spot somewhere.
06. Virgin Road [Frederic Chopin: Prelude in D flat major, Op.28-15 “Raindrop”]
The rendition for this song is somewhat sad and lonely, and yet it doesn’t seem very hard on the ears. The combination of the classical note and Ayu’s voice is melodic at best and compared to the original track, this is way better.
07. Dearest [Antonin Dvorak: Humoresque No. 7 in G flat major]
The flute starts this song and passes the music to the violins to build a nice opening for Ayu’s voice. The guitar assists with the verses of the song. The flutes are a nice touch to the song, which makes the song more powerful and yet so light that makes you want to listen to it over and over again.
08. HONEY [Georg Friedrich Handel: Oratorio “Messiah”; Hallelujah]
This is the only song in the album that is fast beat and entertaining. It was a wonder that a lot of fans of Ayu herself dislike this song, but I am in love with this. It starts with Hallelujah part of the “Messiah” song and then Ayu’s light and jovial voice enters with the lyrics of “Honey”. The combination is perfect in terms of learning that you are head and over heels in love with you perfect partner and it is reciprocated.
09. winding road [Claude Debussy: Preludes Book 1, No.8 “La fille aux cheveux de lin”]
The start if the song is as if you are getting lost in a forest and only a flute and maybe some birds are fluttering about. The song is slow and calm, a perfect combination with someone who wants to think about some things for a while.
10. Who… [Edward Elgar: Salut d’amour (Love’s Greeting)]
The violins are quiet and yet heavy as they start the song that accompanied with Ayu’s light voice. There are some parts that the heavy violins are overpowering Ayu’s voice, and it might not be the perfect classical song to combine with, however, the chorus makes it work as Ayu’s voice rises as well, like a challenge to the music.
The album itself is not the best of Ayu and yet it also displays a good combination of music from old classics with her new, pop music. It is a must have for all of those who would like interesting combinations in music, and of course if you are a fan of Ayu in the first place.