This album is incredible! Bosozoku Symphonic made me cry, Tokyo House Party made me dance around, and all the other tracks had me singing along at top volume. Euphemia and Knightmare/Frame do have a little less impact than their EP versions, however this is because they have been polished to perfection. You get used to their new sounds very quickly!
Absolutely 100% BUY THIS ALBUM! You will not regret it!
Having been a fan of this band for a few months, I was looking forward to this album, particularly after seeing their Youtube video advertising it (the song used in the video is the very last minute or so of the album) and it really doesn't disappoint.
There are eleven tracks on this album, and three of them are the finalised versions of songs that Area 11 is very well known for, 'Euphemia' in particular; the songs vary in genre from more or less pure rock, to acoustic, jazz and melodies that wouldn't be out of place in a video game and yet are very cohesive for the most part. On a second listen through of the album every single song with words in English (counting the five movements of Bosozuko Symphony as five different songs) contains references to the stars or lights in the sky *without* being obtrusive or out of place, which shows just how much effort was put into writing the lyrics and the overall structure of the album.
The songs with the strongest lyrics (which is saying something as there isn't a single song that *doesn't* have very good lyrics) are 'Shi no Barado', 'Vectors' and 'Bosozuko Symphony Mvt IV (All the Lights in the Sky)' and the words really pull you into the song and carry you along with the music. I will say that 'Bosozuko Symphony' probably isn't for everyone as ' as the change from the instrumental dreamy tones of 'Mvt II' to the chip tune/8 bit beat of 'Mvt III' which then leads into the simple acoustic guitar of 'Mvt IV' can seem a bit jarring, and admittedly it isn't as well done as it could have been.
That said, I don't think there's a weak song in the album, and 'Vectors' and 'Shi no Barado' are definitely my new favourite songs from this band; they are amazing.
While this album (and the band in general) is inspired by anime and Japanese culture in general it's not very noticeable if, like me, you aren't much of an anime fan.
I sincerely recommend this album to anyone. Area 11 has also released the album onto Youtube so even if you're feeling a bit dubious about buying the album, go listen to it on Youtube first.
I only heard the Area 11 album recently due to a recommendation from my partner. I hadn't really heard of them before, and haven't really spent the time watching their podcasts.
But I really like the album as a whole. Yes I do like anime, but I don't think the creative lyrics relating to certain anime shows has influenced my opinion - when first hearing the album I had no idea that some of the tracks were based on anime shows.
The guitar and vocals, are good. The lyrics on a whole work well with the instrumental. I love how the first two starting tracks get you into the mood to listen to the album on a whole, and the final track works a perfect closing track, helping you to unwind after a rock-out session.
I'm very interested to see how this band progresses in the future. I would love a hard copy of this album on CD at some point. It'll also be awesome to see if any of their tracks do pop up in any future anime releases.
I don't generally buy mp3's, as I prefer owning the CD, but I'm glad I purchased this one.
I will ready admit I often pirate songs and have very little if no respect for the music industry any more but this album....This band...I may have learned of them from the yogscast but even now after my love for the yogs has dies my love for area 11's music goes on. This is their best album as far as I am concerned, lots of good anime based songs with all the references we nerds will get, but if you happen to have stumbled on to this and don't want anime don't be discouraged, the songs may be about them but they have more thought and feeling behind them then any pop song from the past 20 years so give them a try. I think you will love them. Their are 3 songs that are do overs which might not be as good as the originals to me but songs like vectors and Shi No Barado are amazing and you would be doing your self an injustice not at least listening to them and you would be doing an injustice to this amazing band with almost no outside support if you love it and don't buy it. Please internet throw your money at something that deserve it for once.
This album is absolutely amazing! You begin with the epic sound effects of System; Start, then are launched straight into the guitars of Vectors, Euphemia and Knightmare/Frame. The rave of Tokyo House Party follows (which makes you want to dance) then Shi no Barado, the most emotional track on the album. Next is the digital haunt of Cassandra pt II, then the punch of The Strays and the motivation of Dreams and Reality. Then it's Heaven-Piercing Giga Drill, my favourite. Then there is a Bombay mix of Bosozuko Symphonic, totaling 11:11 - an impressive feat. Area 11 did a fantastic job on their debut album and I can't wait for their next EP. I would recommend this album to anyone who likes rock and/or anime/manga.