14 December 2015

Nakayama Yuma - YOLO moment LE B/RE single review

Limited Edition Type B
 Artist: Nakayama Yuma
Title: YOLO moment
Release date: 22 April 2015
Type: single
Version: Limited Edition B/Regular Edition

Regular Edition
Packaging: I love the covers for this single with the retro look going for them. And I am a sucker for CDs that are made to look like records, which all three that are in the two editions I have are.

The regular edition is the typical packaging from Johnny's Entertainment with a slim jewel case with no back jacket. The front jacket is a gate fold cover with simply the lyrics on a white background inside, though it does make use of the extra sides by having two additional photos of Yuma in the cover outfit.

Since the limited edition comes with a DVD as well it has both a front and back jacket. The back has images of Yuma on both sides of it. The front jacket is a smaller booklet than the regular edition with just the lyrics to the two tracks in it on the same plain white background. There is another image of Yuma so between the two editions there are plenty of photos to pick a favorite from.


1. YOLO moment
The title is rather hokey but I am more than willing to forgive it as the song is great. It's fun, really catchy and one of those songs that you want to just bounce around to. Or whistle, as that is used to good effect throughout the song. I am pretty sure this was Yuma's first time writing the lyrics for one of his songs and honestly while simple they work well with the song and since he uses YOLO for its original meaning of seizing the moment and not letting it pass you by and not the more recent meaning of excusing yourself to do whatever you want, it is not so cringe worthy. Instead it fits with all the other J-pop songs with "do your best" lyrics.

2.葉桜 (Hazakura)
The B-side exclusive to the limited editions of the single. A slow paced song that definitely fits as a B-side, as there is not much that stands out about it. It does have some moments though, like the instrumental build up right before reaching the chorus keeps it from becoming sleepy. Being a slower song though it does let Yuma's vocals shine more so it is nice to have paired with YOLO moment on a single to show off the two different sides of his music and that he can be versatile.

2.Friday Night ~こんなミライ~ (Friday Night ~Konna Mirai~)
The first of the three B-sides exclusive to the regular edition of the single. This fits very well with the title track as it is another fun pop song. Not nearly as strong as YOLO moment but still pretty solid. It is nice and upbeat and the chorus is a bit catchy, just not the ear worm the title track is. I do love the section that the instruments are dialed back to focus more on Yuma's vocals as it slows down which adds to the contrast to the chorus that it moves directly into after that.

Things are slowed down with this song though not enough to put it quite into ballad territory. It does work well as a song to wind things down even more from the previous song. My favorite parts of the song is a section of the verses that have lyrics that must be sung rapidly. It makes the song stand out and helps with the build towards the chorus.

4.ネガイゴト (Negaigoto)
Now the regular edition reaches the ballad/ slow song for it. I love the chorus for this as it has such a nice build up to it from the soft start of the song and it just flourishes when it hits giving it an uplifting feeling. The dynamics of the music in this makes it an enjoyable listen and I prefer this slow song to Hazakura honestly.

(The limited edition also has the karaoke track for YOLO moment.)


The fan event is broken into a few song performances and then talk portions, which is mostly Yuma just talking freely about various topics but he does have a laptop to share pictures of hanging out with other Johnny's with and some video of past performances, mostly PLAYZONE related.

The performances are strong and really let Yuma shine. Considering how long he has been performing and that he has been working as a soloist for a while now it is no surprise he looks quite comfortable on stage.

He does get some visitors from Johnny's, though unless one is familiar with the dance units they are not instantly recognizable. But they are Juniors that Yuma has a work history with and you can tell they get along well.

At the end we get to see him do the "high touch" for the fans as they leave then get some final thoughts from him after that was done.

Overall: After his debut album I was looking forward to Yuma's next single and this one definitely delivered what I was hoping for. All the songs are solid though some more than others, but none are something I would skip with a play through of it.

As someone who lives overseas going to a fan event is basically a pipe dream so it was nice to have that included for the bonus in the second limited edition. It felt more than worth it to get it as it was a good showcase of Yuma's performance level as well as how comfortable he has become being able to be on stage on his own and do a talk.

Really solid release all throughout and it just feels like a complete shame more people do not follow him.