Tateyama~ ONE OK ROCK's Zankyo Reference

Thursday, April 16, 2015

Hi guys! So, here's another review of one of the ONE OK ROCK albums, the Zankyo Reference 

Zankyo Reference was released last October 5, 2011. I know it has been like more or less four years since this album was released, but it did had a great effect on the band's success nowadays. Some songs from this album are still performed by the band whenever they have concerts and live houses.

This is actually another second favorite of mine, along with their previous album, Niche Syndrome. You gotta listen to the tracks from this one. They are pretty amazing.

The Tracks:

  • Coda - For me, the intro for this album was calming, but heavy to the feeling too. I can hear there's a lot more electronic influence to it, like it's vibe was more futuristic. The kind of giving you the feeling of looking forward into the future, excited but scared at the same time. Things may start slow, but it will be promising to the end.
  • LOST AND FOUND - Wow! Just like the previous album, they kicked it off with another pure English track. Again, I'm very proud for this one. I love this one. When you listen to this one, you can definitely say that ONE OK ROCK is ready for anything whatever waits for them in the future.
  • アンサイズニア (Answer is Near) - This was a hit, right? Another one of my favorites from this album. Truly one of the most meaningful songs that I've heard in my whole existence, though most lyrics are in Japanese (Well, Google translate's gonna take care of that for me). The melody is catchy, but trust me, it's gonna be more than that.
  • NO SCARED - AAAAAHHHHH!!! I love NO SCARED!!! I get a lot of feedback like "What the hell's NO SCARED?!", but I don't mind those people who don't wanna get it. I know this track sells to the teenage crowd, but if you ever feel like you just wanna keep your head bangin' the whole day, this is the song that you must listen to. 

  • C.h.a.o.s.m.y.t.h. - They are slowing it down now. When you hear this song, the start was a bit of a mellow-rock, but there is a transition when it goes to chorus. It gets louder and back to the rock that we love. This is another meaningful song for the band, as Taka wrote this one for his friends, his bandmates. I can say it's a must-listen track.

  • Mr.現代Speaker (Mr. Gendai Speaker/Mr. Modern-day Speaker) - When I first listened to this, I was hoping from the bottom of my gut that OOR didn't change their genre, but I definitely relaxed when the chorus came. Yay! They are still a rock band after all. I thought they were aiming for that electro-pop-rock shit that I get to hear everyday. This is something new from the band. It's definitely one of the powerful tracks from this album. 
  • 世間知らずの宇宙飛行士(Seken Shirazu no Uchuu Hikoushi/Naive Astronaut) - Now I can really sense that they are definitely aiming for something different. Why? The title is in Japanese, but the song's in English! and also, must be because these guys are maturing, and their tastes are changing. This track gave me a futuristic feel to it. I thought it's another one of that electro-rock shit, but it's not. This is another English track from the album. It's actually good, but not really one of my favorites.
  • Re:make - This is one of my favorites. I'd never get tired listening to this over and over again. After that futuristic-inspired track, they followed it up with this rock track and they're back! This song kinda gives me the "I-wanna-move-on-from-this-break-up-'coz-you're-not-worth-grieving-for" feeling. Plus the tune makes my feet stomp, and Taka's vocals makes me wanna scream so loud. 

  • Pierce - Grieving over  a break up? Then this track is for you. It's this album's ballad. Pierce starts with that mellow piano, but the feeling is heavy. I thought that this would be a piano song all through out, but it's an acoustic one. I love it how the song was well-constructed. Since the lyrics were sad, the whole arrangement just simply goes with it, which will make you melodramatic by the end of the day. They inserted violins in this track, and that kinda reminded me a bit of Yellowcard. Pierce actually is a song that's heavy on the feeling, but towards the ending after Taka sang "...we always wish tonight could last forever!", it's about time to let go of that feeling. 
  • Let's Take It Someday - Again, another one of my favorites. Why? It's give you that positive feeling toward life. I love listening to this one whenever I'm on doubt with the decisions I make, big or small. And this song is one of the band's legacy to the fans, since the message of the song is very inspiring and a lot of people can relate to it even if you're not a ONE OK ROCK fan. They still play this song live, and I'm hoping I could hear this one live too. I would really jump so high while singing. 
  • キミシダイ列車 (Kimishidai Ressha/Your own train) - I guess this is my ultimate fave from the album. I love every part of the song. The intro simply moves me in any way. I love it how well it is written by Taka. This song gives a positive vibe to people of all ages. These lyrics really moved me: "Yes try to try, keep moving on, sou demo shinakya, can't see the light, moto mo ko mo nakunatte hontouni tada itai me miru dake...Just hold on tight it can be alright.." (Yes, try to try, keep moving on, I have to, I can’t see the light, losing everything really makes you focus only on painful experience... Just hold on tight, it can be all right..) AAAAHHH!!! I can't get over it! 

Overall: 9/10. I know it's the same as Niche Syndrome, but I think I have a fair share of faves from this album, and that includes Answer is Near, NO SCARED, C.h.a.o.s.m.y.t.h., Re:make, Pierce, Let's Take It Someday, and Kimishidai Ressha.

From their MV "Re:make"

I've noticed three things from this album.
  • First, ONE OK ROCK wants to try something different and they want to share that to their fans. They have included tracks such as Mr. Gendai Speaker and Seken Shirazu no Uchuu Hikoushi that brought a different flavor to their music. I'm not against it really. I just love the fact that they took the risk and it got a really good feedback. 
  • Also, I've noticed that the lyrics of the songs have matured. It's not that the youngsters of this generation can no longer relate to them, but their maturity took them in a whole different level. The songs that Taka wrote were able to gather more audience than expected. I mean, people of all ages can definitely relate to them now and that's what really amazed me with this album. 
  • And lastly, they included not just one pure English track this time, but three. They can't help it! Taka's English is the best ever among all of the Japanese rock bands I've listened. So, it's obvious that the main theme of this album is about the band's future. That they want to be known for their diversity in music, and that they are ready to make a breakthrough in the international music scene. 
...and that's it!

You may have noticed I included some MVs and a live performance of ONE OK ROCK. If you like you can also check them out. They're awesome!
Stay tuned for my next ONE OK ROCK album review!

'till next post! - k*

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