• こくまろみるく / Kokumaromilk - 少女娼婦 / Girl Whore (2008) - Mature, oppressive and structured visual kei gem - 80% (05/12/14)

    こくまろみるく / Kokumaromilk - 少女娼婦 / Girl Whore (2008)

    Dear readers, weren't you all craving for the sophomore record and another review for Kokumaromilk? These are your possible answers: a.) Yeah, thanks to bands like these, I don't even feel the need to do drugs, b.) No way, coconut milk is not metal at all,; c.) I'm not drunk enough to read through this review ; d.) Pipipipipi!!!. I would have chosen the last answer. Anyway, here it is and only one year after the self-titled full length release, Kokumaromilk are back with a second output and roughly forty minutes of new material. Metal Archives tell us that the band's sophomore release can be translated as "The Princess Wears Grey" but my internet translator indicates "Girl Whore". The first one sounds more beautiful but the second seems to be more accurate. Anyway, please choose your camp and prepare for a big surprise.

    In fact, Kokumaromilk sounds much more ambitious, atmospheric and mature on its sophomore effort. Especially the song writing made a big step forward. Childish melodies and catchy choruses have been reduced and the band offers more epic and sophisticated tracks with an authentic gothic and Visual Kei feeling. The average running time of a song on this release is almost about seven minutes while it was only about four minutes on the precedessor. That's why this release makes me think of projects like Sound Horizon instead of Babymetal as it was on the first record. The duo still adds a few surprising elements here and there of course such as Japanese folk elements and vocal samples in the challenging opener and title song "Girl Whore", jazz and big band elements in the charming "Innocent Love Talk" or classical music sounds in the elegant "Haikaburi Princess". In comparison to the band's first effort, its sophomore release is much easier to digest and less hectical. The different ideas take their time to develop intriguing atmospheres and aren't just randomly put together.

    While most experiments on the sophomore effort work very well and sound surprisingly serious, there are still a few exceptions. The longest track right in the middle of the album is a quite rough one for example. Basically, it is a sound collage with air raid siren, battlefield and military march sounds and a very bleak atmosphere that drags on with a minimal instrumentalisation and odd spoken word passages for almost ten minutes. The track has an intriguing concept but musically it is forgettable and if you don't understand any Japanese, it is even more painful to listen through this song. This song would have been an interesting idea for a two-minute interlude but not for a ten-minute epic.

    Apart of this questionable tune, all other songs have at least several gripping passages or are completely successful examples of an improved progressive song writing. Kokumaromilk's second output is intellectually appealing, musically colourful and always entertaining. Despite its experimental side, this album sounds much more coherent and structured than the first effort as it has a clear guiding line concerning its gothic visual kei genre and the slightly oppressing atmosphere connected to it. While the first strike had its good moments, the sophomore output can be considered as a convincing success and is very warmly recommended to fans of Japanese rock, metal and Visuael Kei bands. I hope that this duo soon comes around with a new full length effort after its last EP had already been released in 2010.

    « Servantes - Инфант / Infant (2014) - It could be a great experimental hard rock band - 70% (04/12/14)Advertisements »
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