Welcome to Kalafina recommendations ver. Gothic/rock. Sorry it took me so long to get to this one! Also, for those of you who requested translyrics/lyrics analysis, I’ll get to that eventually!
Previous song recommendations:
“Yami no Uta” (2010)
Colour justification: “Song of Darkness” needs no additional explanation.
Highlight: [4:12-4:38] “艶なる楽の音/始まる闇の中/激しいレガート/奏でて月は堕ち行くsortiya” (In the midst of the spreading darkness / the luscious notes of paradise / are played in a fierce legato / while the moon plummets)
Notes: Pairs well with “Hoshi no Utai”. Keiko’s dark voice at its finest in both songs. Is it just me, or do Kajiura’s darker songs tend to have better lyrics?
“Hoshi no Utai” (2010)
Colour justification: A song that’s supposed to be about stars sounds as dark as “Yami no Uta” thanks to Hikaru and a bit of Keiko.
Highlight: [3:59-4:10] “響けよ未来 星のうた/空を手に入れたい” (Resound, future, with the song of stars! / I want to claim the sky with this hand)
Notes: Another song where Hikaru gets the word “hikaru” (4:18-4:22). The “utai” in the title often gets confused with “uta” (I’m guilty of that too), but they do have different meanings. “Utai” (謡) is a chant or a rhyming piece of sorts, while “uta” (唄) simply means “song.”
“One Light” (2015)
Associated work: Arslan Senki
Colour justification: There can’t be one ray of light without a background of darkness. And Kalafina girls look great in black.
Highlight: [0:01-0:18] “Intro + 君が出会った/心はきっと/一つだって/間違いじゃない” (Certainly, the hearts you encounter / not a single one is a mistake)
Notes: “微笑みもその涙も…” is a great line as well, but I can’t call that bit my favourite because I dislike how there seems to be an odd break in her voice when she jumps to the high note, though it’s not a big jump. It’s more apparent in album versions than in this life, so it’s probably an intentional effect. I just don’t really like it.
Colour justification: It’s black by elimination. A mysterious-sounding song with some rock elements that doesn’t feel completely Gothic.
Highlight: [0:29-0:55] “Haaaaaa-…”
Notes: Wakana’s vocals in this one are exquisite! Fun fact: Kajiura intended for Wakana’s melisma lines to sound “sexy,” but fans have said it sounds more like “wailing.” You can kind of see the attempt at sexy in the above video.
“Mata Kaze ga Tsuyoku Natta” (2009)
Colour justification: A storm rocking a boat. Much rock. Yup, this one is black.
Highlight: [2:03-2:07] “また風が強くなった” (The wind rises again)
Notes: I thought this was the coolest Kalafina rock song until I read the English lyrics. “Storm is coming~~~” Love the demonic “ahh” at 1:36 though.
“Kagayaku Sora no Shijima ni wa” (2010)
Associated work: Kuroshitsuji / Black Butler
Colour justification: Well, it’s a Black Butler ED (my reasons are getting progressively lamer). Also, it’s about the night sky.
Highlight: [3:00-3:24] “さよなら二度とは/会えない貴方だから/愛しく狂おしく/夜は胸を抉るように” (Goodbye, because of you whom I won’t see a second time / lovingly and madly / the night seems to gouge my chest)
Notes: The title “輝く空の静寂には” translates to “In the Silence of the Blazing Sky.”
“Kichigo no Shigemi ni” (2013)
Colour justification: before I learned that “kichigo” (木莓) = raspberry, I thought it was some poisonous berry, so this song feels like black to me. Technically, this song should go in the red category.
Highlight: [0:19-0:27] “木いちごの茂みに/恋心甘く実って” (In the raspberry bush / the heart for love ripens sweetly)
Notes: This song has lyrics full of great imagery. Kajiura’s tragic songs really do have better lyrics.
Colour justification: Kalafina rock that gives off a cool feel = black.
Highlight: [0:47-1:00] “君の声が聞こえる/少し頑張って側にいるよ/痛みの前で閉じた/扉をほら、開いて” (I can hear your voice / try a little harder, I’m by your side / the door that closes before pain / look, it’s opening)
Notes: Irrelevant fact: I thought “Identify” was “Identity” for the longest time. I guess a song like this does need a verb as its title.
“Ashita no Keshiki” (2009)
Colour justification: Love the minor key and dark tone it opens with.
Highlight: [1:15-1:39] “ここから一人で/帰れる道だから/月の明るいうちに/指を離して” (Because it’s a path I can return to / alone from here / my fingers let go / while the moon shines brightly)
Notes: The song has some sincere lyrics that ask questions related to loving and letting go. Or maybe it’s how it’s sung that makes it feel so touching?
*Lyrics are taken from canta-per-me.net, though I made some of my own modifications with the English translations.
Stay tuned for the final installment: Colour-Coded Kalafina: White.