Aoi Diamond/ Tasogare ni
20 Shuunen Request Best+Rare Tracks
Ame no Parade
Change your pops
The album opens with “Change your mind”, a song which shows that Ame no Parade is capable of making a more upbeat song that breaks out their usual midtempo box. But what a lovely box it is, as shown on the album’s standout track, “stage.” This song is a dreamy piece has such an urgency of emotion to it. Frontman Kohei Fukunaga always sounds like he’s on the verge of tears when he sings, but it’s even more believable on “stage.” The band switches things up on the next track, “Count me out”, by bringing in a newfound house music influence, which is also later found on the song “feel.” Ame no Parade’s laid back cool displays itself best on “1969”, the standout track of the album’s later part.
With “Change your pops”, Ame no Parade brought in several different sounds to show the range that Japanese pop has, and to show that it can be cool to those who normally turn up their noses at the genre (think less AKB48 and Arashi, and more Sakanaction, and even The xx). The result is an album that has more standout tracks than its predecessor, which was more of a mood-creating piece made for listening to in its entirety. But then again, having those standout songs, the ones that catch you and make you revisit them again and again, is one of the hallmarks of pop music.