Nebulas “Hoshi dake ga Shiru” (Review)


NEBULAS are the second shuffle unit to debut. With a powerful line up, fans have been more than eager to listen this single. Toshiyuki Toyonaga, Naozumi Takahashi and Chiharu Sawashiro lend their unique voices to the mesmerizing “Hoshi dake ga shiru“.

Let’s kick off this review.

Nebulas Edition
Single: Hoshi dake ga shiru
Label: Pitagoras / Rejet
Release date: 11/05/16
Genre: J-Pop


01 星だけが知る
02 POLYHEDRON -Stay Foolish Night-
03 星だけが知る -off vocal-
04 POLYHEDRON -Stay Foolish Night- -off vocal-
05 ミニドラマ「ピタゴラス的楽屋トーク ~NEBULAS編~」

Track by track analysis:

01 星だけが知る

With tender piano notes looping in the background, “Hashi dake ga shiru” has a rather long intro (40 seconds), slowly building up his rhythm to what is a powerful emotional chorus. With minimal synths, the instrumental piece puts the piano as the center piece, building up around it with strings, minimal drums, a melodic electric guitar and a rich bass line. With all these elements layed out the instrumental piece doesn’t steal any spotlight to the vocal performances, instead it makes them shine even more. Vocally what can we say? It’s a smooth performance with three different voice colors gathered in one place, giving their best right from the bat. There’s no need for exaggerations or resorting tricks to stand out, the parts are divided in a way that every single one of them has enough time to showcase their qualities, and what a surprise fans got! Every single one of them was able to approach this track with an incredible amount of emotion while displaying it in unique ways. As a whole we don’t have a single complaint. Top quality performance. 5/5

02 POLYHEDRON -Stay Foolish Night-

With a gated seesaw synth as the lead for this track, “POLYHEDRON -Stay Foolish Night-” is a complete 360 from the previous track. Ethereal, futuristic and addictive, this track is the best to show the group’s versatility. Counting with a strong instrumental featuring several synths working on the background as well as the lead, one wouldn’t think that the bass would play a major role on this track. The powerful bassline makes this track sound balanced from start to finish. The instrumental alone will take you to the dancefloor as soon as the first notes hit you. A decent build up rises the tension of this track, leading to a poweful chorus that will grab your attention. On the vocal side we have the whole group rapping their parts at a fast pace to match the instrumentals’ energy, but there’s also a space to showcase their melodic vocals – be it in the pre-chorus or even on the chorus. In the end, both vocal and instrumental tracks are alone impressive, but what about together? It’s flawless. 5/5

Final rating:

What could have possibly gone wrong with this unit? Virtually nothing.
Nebulas gathers Pitagoras / Rejet‘s best singers in one place and what we got was basically a feast to our ears. With Toyonaga‘s versatility and total control over his vocals, Naozumi‘s daring mid-tones and sexiness plus Chiharu‘s melodic, husky vocals, it’s impossible to not be at awe just at the vocal tracks. The instrumental pieces are rich and whole, standing out without even being annoying. Strings, piano, synths and bass take turns leading in the two tracks, laying the pieces for the energetic, emotional performances that the three members give to this groups’ sound. Major props to MIKOTO that has layed out the best instrumentals as well as vocal instructions/coaching for this single, the major reason why the title track sounds stunning (with his vocals helping out in the background as well), and Daisuke Iwasaki that has written some interesting lyrics this time around.
This is a flawless release, hard to rival at this time.

 Hoshi dake ga Shiru is available for purchase on CDJAPAN for all overseas fans.


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.