Friday, June 8, 2007

Two-Mix eclipsed

(Originally 20 January 2007)

I've been trying to free up drive space to feed the anime monster. On the hit list is my archive of music that I've never listened to. I've already ditched Echoes by The Rapture. Up next is 150 BPM by TWO-MIX, which is pretty surprising to me as well.

A long time ago, probably late elementary school or early days in high school, I was in the basement, flipping through channels. I was bored out of my mind at the time, as I typically am now with the exception that I didn't have high-speed internet, a computer capable of running TFC or any other 3D FPS at playable framerates (let alone running any FPS later than maybe Quake at all), and didn't know anything about anime (as opposed to knowing a miniscule amount about my preferences now).

At the time, on YTV they were in between shows, and the announcer (probably one of the PJ's) was saying that up next was a pilot episode for a new series they were going to try out. I thought, that was kind of cool, sort of like history being made. Looking back, it was.

At any rate, I stuck around to see what would transpire, and the OP sequence hooked me from the opening bars. It was good, whatever it was. Heck, it was great, and it was in Japanese, and the animation had fighting robots. The series was Gundam Wing, and the OP was Just Communication from TWO-MIX.

I think it was the first time I had ever heard a Japanese song. I may have seen Escaflowne being butchered by Fox either before or after Gundam Wing — I can't really remember the air dates for either series — but Fox's Escaflowne definitely did not keep the original OP track.

It might have also been the first time I had ever heard electronic, or very nearly after I had my first taste of electronic, which was in a car ride in which Enigma and Robert Miles were played. Just Communication just whipped along. It was faster than almost anything on the radio, faster than the dream music of Robert Miles, and exponentially faster than Enigma on crack. It had a strong low range drive, decent melody (for the time), and thus, TWO-MIX was godly. Just Communication followed with Rhythm Emotion, White Reflection, all Gundam Wing related tracks, all received via the awesomeness of a 33.6 kbps modem on a good day, 28.8 kbps on any other.

150 BPM is an old TWO-MIX album, featuring other old favourites such as Rhythm Generation, Just Meeting on the Planet, and Love Revolution. Unfortunately these are also the stand-out tracks among a host of lesser imitations. I might be inclined to keep these, and toss the rest.

Among the contenders for TWO-MIX's place in my archive are KOTOKO and to a lesser extent, Tamaki Nami. KOTOKO doesn't need any further elaboration, but Tamaki Nami's Believe made more of an impression on me than Just Communication, if that's even possible. Since then, I feel that she's been unable to reach that bar, although she's come close in Heroine, Daitani Ikimashou, Destiny, and Final Memory.

In an earlier incarnation of this article I essentially wrote TWO-MIX off. If they'd actually release more stuff, I'd certainly reconsider. I'm trying to get a hold of Delta Two -Universe- to ascertain whether they've updated their style.