UNWAS – First Mini Album CREASE
Despite the argument that visual kei is a purely visual genre and doesn’t have a sound of its own, there are definite musical styles one can associate with VK and this isn’t one of them. This is the soundtrack of the kick-ass vampire movie that should have replaced Twilight. It’s emo grunge that accompanies your fantasy world as you lay prone, a slave to the auditory senses. This is art. So why are we covering it? It’s a little known fact that UNWAS is made up of visual kei musicians of high pedigree and caliber. It’s also a release as underrated as it is good.
CREASE kicks off with the relaxing tones of “TOWA NI KISS WO.” As the opening number, it sucks the listener into UNWAS’ private world, a dimension languished in melodic guitar and calming vocals. “Forget the sad things. Forget the twisted things.” The lyrics say it all.
“SHOW IN AGAIN” features the hot and dirty guitar-work of Aoi throughout the number, but most present in the affecting opening riff. The number has a tenser edge than the rest of the release, making for a nice contrast, but that tension is released as Aoi lets up and we come to the chorus.
With a grunge tone reminiscent of American band, Placebo, “THE END” features primarily English lyrics as does the majority of the mini album, but this number shines in English, the lyrics adding an extra dimension to the overall impression of the music. Full of ambience, the guitars work together to create a wash of numbing sound complementary to Ma Rock’s light vocals. “THE END” also boasts some brilliant ringing guitar solos.
Coming to an end on a gentle tone similar to its beginning, CREASE concludes with the title track. One guitar echoes the other, each playing in a different register. This constant undertone lulls the listener until drums finally play a hand in the chorus, cymbals crashing like waves under the plain but emotional vocal line.
If laid back music with emotional tones is simply not your thing, you won’t enjoy this album, and therein lies the difficulty, but if you appreciate music as a whole and simply enjoy listening, then you’re missing out until you give CREASE a try. It’s easy to overlook UNWAS who tend to hide away in small live houses, playing with bands outside of the visual scene they cling to, but that’s the danger of the glittering rainbow and starry night of visual kei. Don’t forget to glance in the shadows once in a while.
- TOWA NI KISS WO
- SHOW IN AGAIN
- THE END