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More Adult Music From Kikuta: In The Sky On the Water (Review)

More Adult Music From Kikuta: In The Sky On the Water (Review)

June 12, 2009 | | 4 Comments Share thison Facebook More Adult Music From Kikuta: In The Sky On the Water (Review)on Twitter

If you’re tired of our references to Kikuta’s foray into the realm of hentai games, too bad! I think it’s way too funny to let it go. In all honesty though, his work on these games has been amazing, from his Seiken Densetsu 2-esque LOVE RELAXATION album to the oddly-named NICE LIFE AS WIFE. This time we’re taking a look at IN THE SKY ON THE WATER, which is the soundtrack album for Sora no Iro Mizu no Iro.

You’ll find the usual mix of upbeat Kikuta standards here, but there are a surprising number of more serious and even brooding tracks on the second half of the album. It’s a nice blend of the old, familiar, and easy-going Kikuta that we all love and the more mature version that we’re still trying to get to know.

Find out why it might be a good idea to let Kikuta’s porn music defile your ears in our review of IN THE SKY ON THE WATER after the jump.

The first half of the album contains the most catchy and positive tracks, starting with “Color of the Sky, Color of the Water,” a vocal track featuring Rie Kito. Her voice sounds excellent alongside Kikuta’s belltone melodies, and this is seriously one of Kikuta’s best vocal themes to date. This is followed up by a contemplative guitar piece titled “Now Then,” which lazily plods along without a care in the world. “Probably Peaceful Days” is not probably peaceful, but is most definitely peaceful with its cheery pop rock progression that had me thinking “Novocaine For The Soul” by the Eels (great track, by the way).

From there, it’s time to go grocery shopping with “Horizon,” complete with its phat electric piano melody, hi-hat percussion, and jazzy vibe. I dig the belltone, organ, and guitar bridge section towards the middle of the piece as well. “Three Things I Want to Tell You” is contemplative, as the title would suggest. It’s still soothing and upbeat, however, in contrast to some of the music towards the end of the album.

The bassy belltones and minimalistic approach of “In a Twinkle” sound like something has gone terribly wrong. There are these really cool pad swells that fade in and out of the mix, creating this otherworldly effect. “Love, Hated,” on the other hand, sports a thick layer of delay and reverb that make it sound like the music is coming out of some underwater location. I’d use the word “meditative” to describe it. “Rapeseed Blossoms Everywhere” is a somewhat unsettling track with a brooding melody and constantly moving progression that creates a sensation of restlessness. Finally, “Color of the Moon, Color of the Rainbow” is a melancholy arrangement of the opening theme featuring strings, piano, and guitar. It’s amazing how Kikuta transformed this theme to convey the completely opposite emotions of the original.

“Bridge of Hope” has a hip-hop thing going with some fat percussion, but Rie Kito’s voice ground the piece, making for one of Kikuta’s strange fusion listening experience. “Morning, Noon, Evening” is downright funky with its clap percussion and inquisitive marimba melody. Techno makes an appearance in “Even If It’s a Dream” with its steady boom tss percussion and piano melody that is full of conflict. Delving into even stranger territory, “Precipice” features rapid synth lines and some awesome orchestral sections that are accented by some heavily filtered electronic percussion. This is one of the most unique pieces on the album, and I love it.

Rie Kito returns one more time for the final track, “Unseen Figure.” Her drawn out voice is considerably less bubbly than her previous efforts, and Kikuta’s trip hop percussion adds a nice contrast, ending the album on a more serious note this time around. It’s not the most memorable track on the album, but it provides closure.

Well, with this review, it saddens me to say we’ve burned through all of Kikuta’s recent hentai game releases. If you’re hoping to hear a taste of both the old and new, I recommend looking for IN THE SKY ON THE WATER, although the lack of truly memorable themes would keep it out of my list of favorite Kikuta soundtracks. It also may be hard to hunt down given that it’s only available from his Nostrillia label in Japan. I’ll be looking forward to how he develops his sound in the future, and look forward to hearing (and maybe playing) more of his eroge soundtracks in the future.

Have you been following Kikuta’s hentai work? If you’ve heard IN THE SKY ON THE WATER, do you think this mature style suits him? Enjoy some of what Sora no Iro Mizu no Iro has to offer below, and let us know what you think.

 

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