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Zettai Kareshi Ep 1-11 (complete) February 17, 2009

Posted by ayasawada in Drama.
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800px-zettaikareshiI’ve been catching up on my old dorama and finally finished this lovely series. Zettai Kareshi is funny, heartwarming and heartbreaking and doesn’t fall too much into the ‘same plot every episode’ trap of many Jdoramas.

As with most of my dramas, this one is based on a manga, though the story is pretty different. Essentially though, it’s the story of an unlucky-in-love girl, Izawa Riiko, who for one reason or another ends up buying a ‘love robot’  she names Tenjo Night. Thankfully this is not the story of Japanese love dolls. The robot is a state of the art artificial intelligence customised to be Riiko’s ‘absolute boyfriend’. But how will Riiko cope with such an unconventional relationship?

SPOILER ALERT

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Ayaka January 12, 2009

Posted by ayasawada in Music.
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Sing to the Sky cover

Sing to the Sky cover

Over the last year or so, I’ve been listening on and off to Ayaka, a Japanese songstress, for want of a better word. But it wasn’t until last year, with the release of her second album, Sing to the Sky, that I’ve really become a fan.

I first came across her in 2006 when Omni over at Random Curiosity took time out from anime blogging to highlight one of her PVs. Her first album, First Message, soon followed. She has a really clear voice and a superb range of vocals, which are of course demonstrated in a range of ballads. But whilst those are nice, she also has more upbeat clap-along type songs.

I used to listen to Ayaka on and off, but have really rediscovered Sing to the Sky after starting the Zettai Kareshi drama (more on that when I finish the series). The ending theme is Ayaka’s ‘お帰り’ and it’s a really sweet song, though it opens a little oddly with what sounds like bagpipes (!). The song is about returning home (hence the title) to the warmth of someone who loves you. Yes, it’s as wholesome as it sounds and I love it ^^.

http://www.mediafire.com/?fdziuzfzmh3

Yes, I’ve finally figured out how to embed tracks into a post.

Anyway, the rest of the album is similarly good. The first two tracks, ‘Power of Music’ and ‘愛を歌おう’ always lift my spirits and are on my early morning playlist. ‘今夜も星に抱かれて’ is a sweet, relaxing tune a little like お帰りbut more subtle. ‘Why’ is also a great, positive tune, though an odd choice to accompany the PSP game Final Fantasy VII: Crisis Core if you ask me.

I’ve pretty much been listening to Sing to the Sky on repeat these past couple of weeks. Its great rediscovering albums after a while. If you get a chance, do give some of Ayaka’s songs a listen.