Alice Nine – “Daybreak” (album review)


Formed in Tokyo, Japan in 2004, Alice Nine are one of the names that always pops up when someone asks about good rock bands around the country of the rising sun. I found this band not long ago but I’m already very fond of their sound. I warn you beforehand that this band has tried various genres throughout the years but you could say that their primary genre is rock because, with no mistake whatsoever, this band sounds like a rock band regardless of their visual-kei past (I guess I can call it past since it’s been awhile since I’ve seen the band with that style/genre).

“Daybreak” is the first single release by the band in 2013 and was followed by the releases of two other singles “Shadowplay” and “Shooting Star” but let’s not stray from the primary purpose of this review – the single “Daybreak”.

I found this single to be one of the bands’ best and I’ll tell you why in the following review.

Alice Nine - Daybreak
Album: “Daybreak”
Year: 2013
Band: Alice Nine

1 – Daybreak

Here we find the song that names the single. Possibly the best song I’ve heard from the band, this one was an instant favorite. The soft synth pads at the beginning, the amazing guitars in the beginning and Shou’s voice draw the first parts of the song. The bass and the drums form the best combo leading us to the chorus that really shows how great that band has turned to and how much they’ve changed. The great highlight will possibly be the instrumental, especially the bass, pads and guitar that make the best atmosphere this song deserved. The almost 80’s guitar riffs in the outro build up for another round of the incredibly catchy chorus. Flawless song from the lyrics plus the vocal work by Shou to the arrangement of the song. 5/5

2 – Himitsu (Secret)

Beware the bass! This song is introduced to us with a great acoustic guitar and bass chords. A completely different genre from the first song. This one reminds me a bit of シド (SID’s work). It has that bit of a jazzy feel on it. The chorus is, once again, addictive and the guitar solo by the outro is a great addition to the song completing the jazzy sound featured throughout the song. A nice change from Alice Nine’s previous works and nevertheless a great song. 5/5

3 – Heavenly Tale

From the Alice Nine Live tour in 2012 come this song. Amazing bass work once again by Saga, I mean, this bassist is incredible, there’s not one song from the band that I’ve forgotten that they also have a bassist around, a thing that sometimes happens when I listen to some songs from other bands that insist on keeping the bassist as much as possible in the background. Regarding the song itself: the drums are pretty intense and the guitar screams with a solo incredibly well executed. It’s an interesting song but it fails to impress me thus the rating given. 3/5

4 – Daybreak (instrumental)

Here is the instrumental piece for Daybreak. I don’t usually listen to the instrumental pieces because sometimes what I really enjoyed were some specific parts and not the instrumental in its whole but this song really deserves to be featured without the vocal track. Listening to this without the vocals distracting you is the best to analyze the song and notice how well the song was put together. The rating is obviously the same as the song featuring the vocal track. Mesmerizing in its whole. 5/5

Final rating: 4.5/5

The single is available in regular and deluxe versions. You can find them on cdjapan (follow the links provided for each version).

Daybreak / Alice Nine
Alice Nine
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Author: Vanessa Silva (midorin)

The Hand That Feeds HQ founder and music reviewer writing about Japanese music since 2010. Metalhead. Gamer. Based in Cascais, Portugal. Mamoru Miyano's "Orpheus" was the catalyst to start writing about male seiyuu music.