Thursday, June 21, 2007

Utada Hikaru - Exodus, 01. Opening

Notes on the first track follow.

* * *

Ok, something easy. The opening is appropriate titled, Opening. It starts off a bit quiet some white noise, and grows slightly. She cuts in a bit abruptly but smoothly, and as quickly as she enters, she disappears. It's a short track, and it also ends abruptly. The melody, if you can call it that, is nothing to write home about. What's interesting is the short lyrics.

This is the first time in Hikaru history that you actually want to listen for what she says. The fact that you can actually understand it is a contributing factor, but it's also an almost direct message to the listener. It's not a bad assumption to expect that the listener has probably heard of her as some exotic Japanese singer, so they'll be expecting something with a stereotypical polyphonic "asian" style. The lyrics set the tone for the rest of album, and denounce that kind of stereotypical thinking.

As a Hikaru fan, it has a little more meaning. What else are you going to expect, going in, except more of that same Distance/Deep River style? The words hit home a little more, that it's going to be nothing that you were expecting. She outlines her goals, sort of. I have to wonder about her milestones a bit after hearing what she has to say. She states that she wants to cross between the expectations of the listener, and I'm guessing herself. Transcendence, essentially. In retrospect, that explains the experimental nature of album.

To be experimental, be different, yet still hope to appeal to the masses. Ambitious indeed.