CHIYU – Remarkable or not?

Come one, come all, it’s another brief thoughts on some Visual Kei. This time I am taking it back to CHIYU, who was one of the artists featured in the now defunct JRock Vault. CHIYU, for those who don’t know was a member of the pretty famous, but now also disbanded SuG. Shortly after SuG’s disbandment, he announced his solo debut.
This single, entitled ‘CHIYU’ is his venture into solo-work. It was also live-limited, so the fact the vault got it’s hands on it is pretty impressive. I was a pretty big fan of SuG back in the day. Knowing the breadth of work Chiyu has done in the past, I’m excited to see where he goes with his solo work.

The only pictures I have of the physical EP.

The opening track is “I’m Determined” which is a pretty solid title to start a debut EP. Aside from that, I don’t have much to say about the track. It’s a standard, warm-up the listener, opening track. Not particularly remarkable, but standard in a lot of recent VKei/JRock EP’s.

Jumping into the next track “Finger PrintS”, we dig back into more of what I was hoping for from Chiyu. We hear Chiyu’s voice, which is just as good as I remember. I was initially thrilled that Chiyu was even doing some growling on the track! However, that has simmered since follow up listens, indicate it’s vocal distortion rather then true growls. A small bummer, but still a bit unfortunate.

Techincally speaking the track is solid. The instrumentation, composition and mixing of the track is fantastic. Of course, Chiyu’s basswork is legendary and continues to be on this track. Chiyu’s voice is pleasent and the song moves at a solid pace. From a listener’s stand point though, it’s just… good. There’s no major weak points in the track, aside from it being more JRock then VKei in my opinion, so it’s just rather basic.¬†It’s certainly not a song on repeat in my world.

Now we’re on the final track of this mini, “Wonder Oneself”, which feels significantly more Visual Kei. The build up in more familiar to me, and it certainly more interesting then the prior tracks. Chiyu plays a bit more vocally, adding some rolling accents and other smaller signatures of his singing. The track bounces a bit, keeping it’s momentum throughout but allowing the song to progress naturally. Again, it’s a nice track, just… not quite remarkable.

I think that last line sums up this debut EP pretty well; all the tracks are solid and well produced just there’s nothing remarkable about them. I was expecting a bit more considering it is Chiyu after all, but alas. This EP falls into the great production and execution but nothing special. I’ve dragged my feet on this one hoping that something would click or my opinion would have changed… It remains¬†unremarkable no matter how many times I listen, or in what order.

I have faith Chiyu has progressed and experimented a lot more in follow ups. For a debut EP, not bad just not remarkable.


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