Vickeblanka – Urara

4 out of 5

Label: Avex Trax

Produced by: (?)

A four track single and so much joy.

The title track, from Wizard, is one of the album’s best tracks – and one of Vicke’s best singles – and it’s a sprightly, inventive joy no matter how often I listen to it.  Followup Get Physical keys more into a straight-forward pop sound, a little less layered than ウララ, but it’s energetic and fun.  Black Rover, also from Wizard and one of Vicke’s contributions to Black Clover, is definitely an oddball from his output, as it’s very much a rock-centric track, but it’s an interesting experiment, especially for how it blends the artist’s piano abilities with the rawk.  Closer 今ここで逢えたら fulfills the need for a ballad, and has a gentleness with its approach that recalls the excellent Lucky Ending, but with a stunning build-up and release for its conclusion.

The single is admittedly a bit scattered, style-wise, and Black Rover just doesn’t fit very well on any Vicke release, but the new tracks are definitely worth checking out.