LiSA: BEST DAY, BEST WAY

By Paris365 on April 10, 2013

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Release Date

4/3/13

Genre

J-pop

Label

Aniplex

Singer/songwriter LiSA's actual name is Risa Oribe. LiSA, an acronym of Love is Same All, is simply her stage name. Prior to becoming a solo artist, LiSA was in a band that she started which used the LiSA acronym. (Not sure if that was meant as a gay rights/marriage equality thing.) Before that, she was in an indie rock band called Chucky. (Anyone know if they were named after Chucky from the Child's Play and Chucky movies?) In any case, LiSA made her debut as a solo artist during April of 2011 with the release of her mini-album Letters to U on Sony's Aniplex label, which she's still signed to today. We previously reviewed her second single "Crossing Field," which was the opening theme for the 2012 anime series Sword Art Online. "Best Day, Best Way" is her third single and, so far, it's reached number 12 on the Oricon chart.

"Best Day, Best Way" is an enormously catchy up-tempo pop rock song featuring blazing guitars, super fast bass guitar wizardry and some truly kick ass drumming. But LiSA's enthusiasm is what really makes the song. Her performance over-flows with the sort of high energy that Leo Ieiri and Kelly Clarkson always bring to the table. I don't know Japanese, but I still feel invigorated when I listen to it. It grabs you and shakes you like that. I know I use the word infectious often, but this song absolutely is. Definitely one of the strongest singles I've heard so far this year.

The first B-side is called "I'm a Rock Star" and, yes, LiSA is cool enough -- and rocks hard enough -- to get away with that. It might be slightly less energetic than "Best Day, Best Way," but that still makes it 100% harder, faster and stronger than most pop rock coming out these days. Actually, never mind the pop rock label -- the melodious nature of LiSA's songs might stem from pop, but these ultimately are ROCK songs. All of these newly reunited hair metal bands would be wise to take lessons from her instead of putting out the slow, monotonous crap so many of them are releasing of late.

The final track is "シロイトイキ," which Google and CD Japan simply translate as "Shiroi Toiki," which I'm assuming is a name, but I could be mistaken. All I know for sure is that it's another fun-filled, hyper gem and I can help but wish there were more songs like it. I mean, I love the new Bon Jovi album -- really, I do -- but then I hear something like this and I find myself wishing they'd done something more in this vein, which reminds me a bit of Bon Jovi classics like "Blood On Blood" and "Tokyo Road." Another example would be Lita Ford, formerly of The Runaways. She's put out a couple of decent albums during the last few years, but is there anything as energetic as LiSA's songs? No, not really. I wonder if there's un unwritten universal law that you can't play this fast once you reach a certain age. (This single also includes an instrumental version of the title track.) -Michael McCarthy

A limited edition, first pressing version of this single is also available and comes with a DVD featuring the music video for the title track.

Labels and artists interested in being featured here may contact Michael McCarthy at cinema365@gmail.com. Michael reviews other (non-Asian) music at Love is Pop: http://www.loveispop.com.
Follow Michael on Twitter: https://twitter.com/paris365.

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