Miyavi – What’s my Name?

Release date: November 13, 2010
Label: EMI Music Japan

Tracklist

  1. WHAT’S MY NAME?
  2. TORTURE
  3. A-HA
  4. CHILLIN’ CHILLIN’ MONEY BLUE$
  5. I LOVE YOU, I LOVE YOU, I LOVE YOU, AND I HATE YOU.
  6. MOON
  7. GRAVITY
  8. UNIVERSE
  9. UNBREAKABLE
  10. SHELTER
  11. SUPER HERO (Album ver.)
  12. すてきな みらい (The Wonderful Future)
  13. FUTURISTIC LOVE
  14. SURVIVE (Album ver.)

After the birth of his two beautiful daughters, the Neo-Japaneze Samurai Guitarist has made his comeback this year with this spiffy new album What’s My Name?, although Oresama himself would prefer to call it a re-debut album. What we can all agree on is that with this new album and starting the New Year, Miyavi will be embarking in a world tour to spread his unique style of “rock’n’roll”.

Just by looking down the tracklist you can get an idea of how quirky this talented guitarist can be, and that gets double confirmed as you listen to every track on the album. It’s hard to find where to start with Miyavi, so let’s begin with the title track What’s My Name?. The guitar play starts off very western US cowboy style, but quickly escalates into Miyavi’s signature crazy-fast guitar playing, which all of us Miyavi fans love. The vocals though, they’ve always been hit and miss with me. I can’t completely praise Miyavi’s vocals, but I can’t condemn them either because for his style of music, it’s really a befitting way to put out lyrics. This song in particular is very lively, but in contrast to most of the songs on the album are very mellow.

Gravity is almost like sitting down to meditate while hearing Buddhist mantras, although at some point it turns into the perfect insert song for an asylum scene in a horror flick and secretly this might be why I came to love this song. Shelter is the song I’d probably recommend from this album, the guitar riff is catchy as hell and lyrics are jam-in-your-car worthy. Then I’d recommend A-HA if you want to get c-c-c-crazy dancing around in your house… or work place, Miyavi will probably think you’re cool if you do.

Overall Miyavi is not for the faint of heart. His style is very out there, kinda crazy and could probably be misunderstood if heard by the wrong ears. I’d classify his music as experimental rock. Give it a try and then decide by yourselves.

Rating: ★★★½☆ 

Preview on Xiami.com | Like it? Buy the album on YesAsia.com: Limited Japan Edition | Japan Standard Edition | Taiwan Edition | Korea Edition

ROXY

A Caribbean Islander who wants to fly. Criminal Justice graduate with a lot to say about social injustice. An eternal scholar. I want to know everything. I blame Disney for making me a total dreamer. My head is mostly in the clouds and I have background music in real life.

6 Responses

  1. Amy says:

    Ah, Miyavi-sama. Listening to the album at the moment. I own… 3 MIyavi albums~ Miyaviuta Dokusou, Miyavizm and MYV*POPS. I fell in love with his crazy guitar-playing – especially on Selfish Love – The guy is crazy. However, I find his mellow stuff like Ashita Genki ni Naare, or Boku ha Shiteru really good too.

    I agree on the comment about his voice though… it's raspy, it shakes… you wouldn't normally say "wow, what a vocalist" but hey! the dude can scream and make it work xD

    Mostly agree on the tracks you suggest, but I would also suggest Suteki na Mirai ;D

  2. Akiko says:

    Actually, I have to disagree about Miyavi’s vocals.. vocalists these days are very cookie-cutter, all singing in similar styles.. be it gloomy vibrato or hip hop groove. Miyavi brings a unique vocal sound that true music connoisseurs crave. For me to say someone has bad vocals would mean they’re totally tone deaf and can’t sing an actual note..(auto-tone anyone?) two things Miyavi has no problem with.

    • amy says:

      @Akiko, autotune has nothing to do with it. there’s more to being a vocalists than styles though. you can also take into consideration range, and miyavi is a little fixed into this Jrock with hiphop style. He’s great at it – and he sounds amazingly unique… only Miyavi can sound like Miyavi, but at least I wouldn’t say he’s got more range than someone like… Shiina Ringo, whose got a broader music and singing style.

      Just my two cents.

      • Akiko says:

        @amy, Makes me wonder how much Miyavi you’ve heard (outside of the mere 3 releases you have of his).. he actually has incredible range, especially when he sings in the shower or live.. but then what he does at home and on stage and what he does in the studio are entirely different things. He also has a very broad music range.. but then again, your collection of 3 bears very recent Miyavi… he’s an artist that grows and shifts.. and if you listen to him from his first solo release, to now, you’ll see that growth and shift.

        You missed my point about auto-tone entirely… but never mind. I was merely keeping my post simple.. what I do for a living has a lot to do with vocals.. we’re not all laymen or fans sitting back giving opinions based on taste, but more based on a professional and experienced level.

        Comparing Miyavi and Ringo Shiina is nongermane..

        Besides, my comment was directed at the article, not you, I wasn’t actually seeking a response. ^__^ Just leaving my thoughts like you did nearly a year ago.. lol.

        • amy says:

          @Akiko, I’ve actually listened to all his solo discography, though I do admit that I’m not generally a huge fan of hard rock stuff from back in his more influenced visual kei days. I haven’t listened to his stuff in Dué le Quartz for the same reason.

          I know he’s got a broad genre in style, and he’s evolved with time. I like that about him, but I’m having a hard time picturing him singing me a jazzy version with a piano and trumpets, mainly because… that wouldn’t be the guitar samurai LOL and I did get to see him live not long ago, actually. You can see it on the related reviews section.

          Plus, it’s good to get discussion going. Some posts get a little too quiet around here… you should comment some more ;) we might invite you to share your thoughts on the site.

        • amy says:

          @Akiko, by the way~ can I ask how you ended up on our site? For research purposes… xD

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