“Lucky Star” – Ai Otsuka


I know, Ai. I'm shocked at the way your label treats you too!

It seems to me that ever since the single “Pocket” came out, Ai-chin’s career has kept getting flushed further and further down the draconian Avex toilet. Maybe it is because she is a whopping 27 years old (obvious sarcasm is obvious) and this is her label’s way of giving the ultimatum of: “EITHER RETIRE OR SING ENKA!” Or perhaps it is because I am an ignorant gaijin who has no idea about the music trends in Japan and I’m just pretentious enough to start a blog acting like I know what I’m talking about. But I digress. This is yet another digital-only download, but it can only be downloaded onto Japanese cell phones! Talk about exclusive! All we get is a crappy radio rip of the audio and no PV to go with it. What a shame. This girl gets zero promotion anymore, and for no reason at all. Has the world given up on her? I know I surely haven’t! On to my review!

Lucky Star: Being the theme song of the Japanese coverage of this years’ Winter Olympics, “Lucky Star” is a bright winterpop/rock type of song. The lyrics baffle me with talk of “love, so family, sea.” Hmmm… is this some sort of convoluted Engrish or a profound statement?  In the verses, Ai’s voice is cat-like, seemingly channeling her persona from “Neko ni Fuusen.” The chorus is joyful, triumphant, and downright catchy. There is also a section with some adorable whistling that further stresses the happy-go-lucky theme of this piece.

In Conclusion: Ai Otsuka is not perfect. Sometimes she releases music that isn’t entirely popular. Every artist does. But I believe that we should all try to give artists a chance to recuperate, not drop them like a hot potato as soon as they release something we aren’t fond of. That is not being a very good fan! I know I have ranted a lot through this review, but I am simply appalled at the decline of Ai’s career over the past two years. Lucky Star is a very solid release, and I hope that people recognize it.

~Alisa~

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2 Comments

Filed under Japanese Pop, Sakurayume's Collection

2 responses to ““Lucky Star” – Ai Otsuka

  1. deshou

    Hmm, I used to be a great fan of Ai’s, and like you I’m appalled at the decline of her career. However, I feel that Ai always had a good grip on her own career and, maybe unlike others, she can sing whatever she pleases. She’s promoted: I can see her around in ads on TV, on billboards, etc., like other artists. My point is, if her career is declining, maybe it isn’t so much Avex fault than her own. And for that, maybe thankfully.
    When you say good fans give artists a chance to recuperate, I remember CHU LIP or Rocket Snickers, for instance.
    But here I just see Ai’s music growing, maturing and changing along with her, except that it almost changes genres as well. Going through her albums, she kept the cute, genki, almost innocent romantic style maybe until Love Piece, although that one was already a bit different from the previous ones (and my fav as album, actually, top), but right after that Love Letter is, of course, mainly ballads only and kind of weak as a whole, package, pictures, songs… Then in Love is Best why did Ai suddenly turned into Moulin Rouge and cabaret style? Maybe very Ai crazy style, but I dare to say not very popular and not what fans have been used to expect of Ai.
    It’s probably due to her own maturing, also the fans’, but maybe that way her public target is not the same as before, and the range also not the same.
    Waah, I’m not good with words, and Avril Lavigne is probably not so good for comparison, but I can only recall her example now ^^;;

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