This album of Shiina Ringo is absolutely excellent. Each song is a success, a masterpiece. I love Marunouchi Sadistic (Expo Ver.) and Karisome Otome (Death Jazz Ver.) Shiina Ringo really has a nice powerful voice and I recommend this album if you like to be surprised.
First Press / External Bonus*Details
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Description in Japanese
三文ゴシップ / 椎名林檎
Related Offer & Feature
THE LEADING HITTER
JUST THE TWO OF US
MARUNOUCHI SADISTIC (EXPO VER.)
丸の内サディスティック (EXPO Ver.)
Ringo Sheena Related Items
Among Japanese artists who’ve never toured the west, Shiina Ringo is one of the most talked about, and with good reason. When she debuted she was a groundbreaking example of how to be a strong woman in the Japanese entertainment business and she’s always straddled the line between mainstream pop stardom and indie experimentation. Her closest western counterpart may be Janelle Monae ? who’s early into her career, but so far has a similar approach towards mixing genres and a similar level of artistic ambition. Shiina Ringo’s last solo album of original material was 2003’s Karuki Zaamen Kuri no Hana, and while she’s been releasing some good albums with her band Tokyo Jihen, her new album Superficial Gossip has been highly anticipated and marks a return to form. Those expecting a return to big guitars and noisy experimentation might be disappointed at first. Keyboards are far more prominent than guitars, and the album draws from jazz, pop, hip hop and R&B more than it does from rock music. Shiina Ringo has always blended genres though, and her real skill in writing great pop songs and giving them interesting arrangements ? which she accomplishes here. There’s nothing like ‘Identity‘ or ‘Tsumiki Asobi‘ here, but most of the songs would be well at home among her earlier material. I don’t love every song on Superficial Gossip, but at it’s best this is some of Shiina Ringo’s strongest material. After being disappointed with Tokyo Jihen’s last album, Variety, I wasn’t optimistic about this album, and I’m glad to be proven wrong. The sound is a blend of Shiina’s album Shouso Strip and Tokyo Jihen’s Adult. If you’re a fan of those two albums this one should appeal to you. Particularly with Tokyo Jihen, Shiina Ringo has demonstrated an obsession with jazz music and it’s very pronounced on this album. The vibraphone and flute break in the middle of ‘Mittei Monogatari’ is great, and transitions back into the killer chorus before becoming too long. On the other hand, the too-smooth jazz of ‘Irokoizata’ lacks any punch, and the two big band numbers on this album, while fairly strong on their own, don’t fit in well with the rest of the album. ‘O Chiten Kara’ is one of the simplest songs on the album, but has a very interesting minimalist arrangement. It’s mostly a piano/drum machine song with the vocals loud and up-front. There are a lot of subtle drones and harmonies going on though, and the melody is strong and memorable. Initially I was disappointed with this one, but after repeat listens it has started to stand out as one of the best on the album. ‘Roudousha’ is pretty surprising to hear from Shiina Ringo. The rollicking piano accompanied by a Motown-style organ brings to mind the Jackson 5. This is simply a great celebratory pop song. ‘Togatta Teguchi’ is an electronic tune that incorporates a lot of the vocal distortion that was present on Karuki Zaamen Kuri no Hana and is one of the strongest tracks here. ‘Bonsai Hada’ is a solo accordion and vocal song and highlights Shiina’s dynamic vocals ? She begins the song with a sensuous, breathy melody and slowly builds towards towards a dramatic, theatrical conclusion. This album took me a few listens to grow into ? on the surface it’s quite a bit different than the music that made me such a fan in the first place, but under the surface all the things that made Shiina Ringo’s earlier work great are present, and I’m glad that she’s not content to churn out the same thing she’s done before, but rather that she’s taking chances. Frankly, I didn’t have high hopes for this one, but it’s reminding me why I got so into Shiina Ringo in the first place and I can recommend it without hesitation.
I just got my copy of Superficial Gossip in the mail today and I love it. Even though I've accepted the fact that we'll never have another KSK, I was still very excited for this album after the EXPO DVD, and it met and exceeded all of my expectations. It holds the same energy of the last handful of sets from EXPO, so if you liked that concert, you'll probably like this.
Shiina Ringo is a true genius from our beloved land of the rising sun. She's been away for a while, but she's back and better than ever. Featuring the same jazzy mood as her previous album, Heisei Fuuzoku, Sanmon Gossip also sets itself apart. It's much more dynamic and features more high-paced songs instead of the mood songs -sometimes bordering on muzak- that could be found on Heisei Fuuzoku. This is definitely a good development for fans of her earlier, punk-like sound, since the music is now faster, though they may still miss the roughness featured in her earlier works. For fans of Heisei Fuuzoku, such as myself, this album is pure heaven. I really think everyone should listen to this album at least once, just to get a general idea what it's about. I wouldn't take her recent single "Ariamaru Tomi" as a guideline for the general sound of the album, though: It's not even featured on the album and does not sport the jazzy sound. Love it, and I'm sure you all will as well.
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