Past November, UPLIFT SPICE came with a new album: ØØØ. This album was able to leave a big impression on me.
I’ve known UPLIFT SPICE for a while now and I absolutely love their Rock/Punk sound. And even though I’m not really a fan of female vocalists, their vocalist Chiori is one of my favourite singers. Together with guitarist YOOKI and the brothers Toyita and Kenji on drums and bass, they’ve made an amazing album. So, without further ado, as I go on and on for hours, here is the review.
2. U & I
8. F*** Darlin’
10. Hypernova Remnant
11. The end
The album starts off with TheHangedMan. The track has a fast pace from the very beginning. With that, it was instantly clear: This ROCKS. Chiori immediately kicks in with a powerful feminine voice. And whenever I hear this song it reminds me of the movie Sakuran. I want to start headbanging right away. The ending of the track has a more soul like feel though, using a bass riff. It’s an amazing start of the album.
The second track is called U & I. This song is a little more known as the band uploaded a PV of it on Youtube. This is also the song that made me a fan. The intro starts off with a guitar and drum motive. After 10 seconds the vocals and the rest of the instruments join and create a boost of sounds, like a surprise attack from behind. It’s impossible to sit still while listening as the track makes you want to scream and headbang along. Especially when Chiori grunts loudly at the end of each chorus. The refrain is almost overwhelming, with Chiori singing U & I as if her life revolves around it. The track is a strong and good rock song and a perfect introduction to UPLIFT SPICE.
ØØØ, the third track of the album, has a distinct and fast bass riff with very tight drum play. It feels almost mystical with a special filter that has been placed over the vocals. This filter is removed as soon as the refrain kicks in though, which creates an uplift in the music. After approximately 2 minutes they switch to an old-school metal sound with symphonical sound effects, giving the track a pleasant surprise.
On track number four there is Irony. The track starts out pretty calm, but overall has a happy punk rock vibe to it. Yet again a track I feel like dancing and headbanging to. The sound effects in this song compliment the guitar and drums perfectly and it almost sounds as if the track is hopping. Even the vocals sound happy and nice, even though the title of the song kind of contradicts the happy feel.
Off to the fifth track, カルト. This is a no nonsense rock song with light metal like guitar play. The words go so fast that it almost seems as if Chiori is spitting out the words. This is followed by a refrain where she sings with all her might. The track gives me the feeling that entirety of the band is giving their all. And if you were to ever see this band live, please give your all as well. An amazing core track.
F.U.B.A.R. is the sixth track. It starts off with a guitar intro where, or so it seems, an anchor-man is reading some news. After 20 seconds, however, there is an explosion of guitars, bass, and drums, which immediately fade out to make way for the vocals. And they are superb. If you thought the previous songs were high level vocals already, in this song she even takes it up a notch. She brings forth even more of her qualities on another level. Her singing, grunting, and screaming melt the track together as one as a piece of art. This song makes me question whether I should be headbanging or listening to it full of awe. It’s a real killer song.
Track seven is called マーニとハティ. This song provides a breather from the previous track F.U.B.A.R. A nice rock melody with happy vocals. A pleasant bass-line sounds throughout the track, making it feel like a track that makes you want to jump, dance, smile, drink and just enjoy life.
And then came track 8, F*** Darlin’. This track begins with an R&B flow. After a while this changes into a romantic rock feel when the bass changes. But don’t get fooled, there still is a distinct sound of emotions and frustration noticeable. Especially every time Chiori sings the words F*** Darlin. Hands in the air and wave along or playback to the song in your bathroom.
PsyWar, the ninth track, feels like a 50’s jingle with electric guitars. The drums and hard guitar play right after that pull you right out of that feeling though, even when the bass is still playing with a jazzy/soul sound. If there would be modern punk rock in the 50’s this would be what it would’ve sounded like. Simply Amazing! Like ladies in petticoats with Dr Martens boots underneath. From ballroom dancing to headbanging, everything goes well with this track. Very impressive how they managed to combine two entirely different genres into one song.
Just before the last track there is Hypernova Remnant, a track that brings us back to the punk rock vibe. The most noticeable part of this track is the refrain, which flows onto you and suddenly pulls back. It feels like waves going back and forth and pulls you with it. This flow is being backed up by the vocals and the guitar. A really good go with the flow song with a lot of fire.
And then, unfortunately, the last track with the fitting title The End. The song starts off with the bass leading the rhythm. Then suddenly, the track goes into full gear as the drums take over from the bass. The song goes all out and before you notice it you are jumping and singing along. After this sudden outburst, there is a small breather. And when I say small I do mean small. Each moment of rest is quickly followed up by an increased pace. It’s a beautiful hard rock song that really makes you want to rock out too, and a great ending of the album.
Overall this is an album that is enjoyable time after time. You get sucked into the music and get overwhelmed with the emotions behind each song. And even though I probably won’t be at any of their concerts, I know for sure this is an album I will listen to a lot. This is really a must have for people that like up-beat rock and aren’t afraid of the female vocals.
The European tour of UPLIFT SPICE will start 18th of May. For more tour data please click here.