The second full length Japanese album from one of my favorite girl groups CSJH the Grace a.k.a Tenjochiki showed a move evolved sound. The quartet consists of dancing machine and rapper Stephanie,Lina former member of ’90’s pop group IsakNJiyeon, Dana the musical actress and goofball Sunday.
‘Dear…‘ includese their sixth(Stand Up People) and seventh(Here) single as well as the theme song to Homeless Chugakuse and a song from the movie Subaru.
The album kicks off with Here theme song in both film/drama Homeless Chugakuse featuring hip-hop trio CLIFF EDGE (feat. JUN, SHIN and DJ GEORGIA). Formerly an acapella group, the sync of their voices really stand out in this track. Cliff Edge complement the track with their rap.
少しでいいから/Sukoshi de iikara/A Bit of Good, part of the soundtrack for the Japanese film Subaru, is a piano-driven ballad that showcases the harmony of the group.
The band’s sixth single,Stand Up People is a jazzy track; this has dance written all over it. Stephanie wrote the rap lyrics herself. The thing I like about Stephanie’s voice is that it’s a bit deeper and rough; it makes the rap very fun and enjoyable.
I Don’t Know What to Do has a ’60’s feel with the bass guitar.The muffled voice reminds me of a Taeyang’s ‘lean and snap’ in his I Need A Girl choreography, very retro. Featuring lyrics by H.U.B. and music by Philip Hochstrate, Drew Milligan, Dele Ladmeiji and Sarah West. The girls try their hand at an attempt of a rock track with Party and I have to say they failed. The electric guitar (synth) and pop beats don’t really have a good balance; it seems like the guitar was thrown around in there. Featuring lyrics by Sunday. 天上のメロディー/Tenjo no Melody featuring an upbeat track with lyrics by Lina and Dana. An upbeat track that showcases the group’s vocals.
Near ～thoughtful・1220～, the ending theme for Fuji TV program Sukibara, starts with some very cheesy narration by Stephanie then fades into a mid-tempo pop track with a nice groovy beat. One of my favorite tracks after ‘A Bit of Good’ and ‘Stand Up People’. どうして…/Doushite is an upbeat track with lyrics written by Sunday and Stephanie. Pretty cool melody with a piano lead-in and awesome harmony and vocals. Epilogue starts with the melody of Sukoshi De ii Kara and climaxes into something a little darker .
I’m glad Tenjochiki experimented with their sound more and veered from their usual pop route. This album was mature and put together tremendously. I can’t wait to see what they have in store for us once they reunite in Korea or Japan and release another amazing single.
Recommended Tracks: Here,少しでいいから,Stand Up People,Near ～thoughtful・1220～