Artist: Namie Amuro
Album: “Concentration 20”
Label: AVEX TRAX
I’m a fan of Namie Amuro but was only familiar with her hip-hop/R&B phase. It wasn’t until I listened to her compilation albums and got curious about this particular phase where she was infusing rock into her music. Some of my favorite songs from her are from this era so I wanted to check out the heart of it which lead me back to 1997 with the release of “Concentration 20”.
What I really loved is some of the long intros to her songs. You’ll hear an instrumental for maybe 30 seconds before she starts singing. The long intros make the songs super epic as we anticipate the moment when Namie starts to sing. This is definitely the case with the lead single, “a walk in the park”. It also gives Tetsuya Kumuro (aka the producer) a chance to shine with the intros.
Tetsuya Kumuro makes sure Namie is able to shine. You feel each instrument which adds to the amazingness of this album.
At this point in her career, she had a limited vocal range, yet she still makes it work. What could be a good thing could also be a bad thing too as the songs do take what feels like an eternity to officially start.
Enjoying this album made me realize that I should totally go through her entire discography as she has reinvented herself countless times which means it’s also reflected in her music. Namie Amuro also has a very deep catalog of music, but I also have plenty of time. This also makes me wonder how JPop was back in the 90s since I wasn’t listening to the genre during that decade.
It’s amazing that at this point in her career, Namie Amuro felt the need to evolve even though what she had been doing was working. It’s reflected in her music and I’m looking forward to seeing all of reinventions.
Overall rating: 4.5/5
Reviewed by: Timtastic