archeologic, by delofamilia

18-archeologic

Released March 13, 2013

39 min, 16 sec

delofamilia, as mentioned in the first Rie fu post on this blog, has been a side project of hers since 2009. The band formed independently of Rie in 2007, as the pet project of Naoto Hiroyama (of the Japanese rock band Orange Range), releasing their first album that same year. That first album featured guest vocals by Eri Nobuchika and AIR, with the lyrics and music written by the three as a unit. Rie was recruited for the band’s second album, eddy, released in 2009, and became a permanent member of the band after joining them on the subsequent promotional tour. delofamilia subsequently became defined by the collaboration between Rie and Naoto, and they have been the sole official members since 2009.

Archeologic is the band’s fourth studio album, and their third with Rie. The album retains the band’s typically dark sound, while also sprinkling bright moments throughout the album, resulting in the music having a bit more of a positive sound. Rie’s lyrics and vocal delivery, however, retain the sharp edge that they’ve had in all of her work with the band, characteristically sung entirely in English. The album also features hard-hitting guitar work by Naoto, incorporating a wide variety of instruments, both typical to rock music, and more influenced by the band’s Eastern heritage. The resulting sound is far more Western than one may expect from a Japanese band; this is one of delofamilia’s defining characteristics, giving the band a distinct sound from Rie’s solo work (though her 2012 album Bigger Picture hems closer to Western music than previous and subsequent releases).

I always find it difficult to talk about Japanese albums, because I don’t have any sort of deep reason for listening to them, nor can I really put together a strong review of them, likely because delofamilia has absolutely no footing in North America. As with Rie’s music, it is very difficult to get a hold of delofamilia’s albums outside of Japan, frustratingly so.

Similarly, I find myself lacking in useless trivia to spew out, though I did think of one thing: the first opening and ending sequences for the anime series Bleach use, respectively, the Orange Range song “Asterisk” and the Rie fu song “Life is Like a Boat,” which predates their collaboration by nearly five years.

That’s, uh, that’s all I got. I like this album a lot more than the previous two Rie fu-led ones, mostly because the songs aren’t as aggressively dark-sounding this time around. I just wish the albums would get iTunes releases stateside. At least Rie fu releases her stuff there, now. That’s much easier than attempting to navigate sites written entirely in Japanese, trying to add my credit card info to buy the digital albums legally.

Which I’ve done, more times than I’m proud of. Thanks, Japan.

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