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Sunday, November 29, 2015

Sympho-Neighbours: I, Overlooking Songs? Yes, Surely!

...okay, corny title word-plays aside, we follow up yesterday's Song of the Week feature with a 1st-timer "Artist Corner Time" here on Sympho-Neighbours to talk a bit about some of music circle IOSYS' contributions to other rhythm games in recent years.

For IOSYS' case, Konami's bemani music titles have been their first foray into rhythm gaming fandom, with high enphasis on the "weirdly catchy" Denpa Song (電波ソング ) genre, often featuring squeaky voices and random chattering.

One of their first ones in bemani territory was Totsugeki! Glass no Kneeso Hime!  (突撃! ガラスのニーソ姫!; lit. 'Assault! Princess Knees of Glass!'), who made its debut on the 19th beatmania IIDX game (IIDX Lincle) and later on got remixed by IOSYS member D.watt for the SOUND VOLTEX series. Although if the artist for the song is credited as "Monotone" (山本椛), it's actually standing for the trio made of composer Youhei "ARM" Kimura (木村洋平) (the same one behind Touhou Arrange song Cirno's Perfect Math Class), lyricist Yoshimi Youno (夕野ヨシミ) and singer Momiji Yamamoto (山本椛).

Always from the same composer, it's impossible to talk about ARM in bemani without mentioning one of his contribution from the media mix project HinaBitter♪ (ひなビタ♪), opened by resident composer Tomosuke Funaki in collaboration with Kadokawa Shoten's anime-related offspring FujimiShobo (富士見書房). The project features a bundle of songs made by the fictional band HinaBitter♪, all made of girls who put together the act in order to raise money for their financially-struggling hometown.

The song featured in the video above, Chikuwa Parfait da Yo☆CKP (ちくわパフェだよ☆CKP), is one of the firsts to make its debut on GITADORA, the first modern-times rename/restructuring of the GuitarFreaks/DrumMania series. featuring the voices of Rina Hidaka and Hiromi Igarashi as two of the Hinabitter♪ girls, Marika Yamagata and Meu Meu.

To prove that IOSYS on bemani isn't all about denpa, we head towards the REFLEC BEAT series, where go back and forth the two sides of the screen at different places all times but still reaching the hit spot at the same timing for each play.

Army of Marionette, the song featured in the video above, is composed by Shohei Uno (宇野 将平), a composer whose works aren't heard in Taiko gaming yet.

Uno has also composed some denpa-related tracks, one of which goit featured in the latest instalment of the pop'n music series (Lapistoria), under the symbols-filled title of √Taiyoukei◎Donuts Ka Keikaku∞∀∞ (√太陽系◎ドーナツ化計画∞∀∞; lit. 'Solar System Donut Plan')

With the returning lyricist Yoshimi Youno, this is another song featuring the voice of Chiyoko (ちよこ), also singer of Namco Original Yamatai★Night Party in Taiko games.

Not all IOSYS's core composers are all about bemani, though! One of the music ensemble's founders, Lettuce 'D.watt' Shichijou (七条レタス ), for example, is seen the most for other companies' franchises, such as Taiko no Tatsujin as the composer of IOSYS Aki no Nikushoku Matsuri 2014 and Shotoku Taiko no「Hi Izuru Made Asuka」.

For Sega' maimai series, he made the song Spin me harder (of which we briefly talked about in yesterday's SotW feature), starring the voice of Asana (あさな), also the singer of NAMCO SOUNDS x Touhou Arrange song Kokihi no Shinzou -SCARLET HEART-.

For Taito's Groove Coaser series, he instead made the full-instrumental track STAR COASTER, also available on the franchise's playable mobile counterpart.

From the same franchise we also have the works of Yuuya 'void' Kobayashi (コバヤシユウヤ), the last of the resident IOSYS composers who also gave a piece of his own talent for the aforementioned Shotoku Taiko no「Hi Izuru Made Asuka」 and Yamatai★Night Party in Taiko gaming.

One of Groove Coaster 2's new songs, Sweet Love features the voice of IOSYS composer/singer Kuroda '96' Ryoko (黒田椋子). as well as in the other songs with vocals made by Yuuya Kobayashi for the GC series so far.

Lastly, we can't end a IOSYS feature with some kind of Touhou-related pick, can we? Among the many rhythm game franchises crossed by the doujin circle, SOUND VOLTEX remains by far the one with the highest number of Touhou songs from their part, often featuring particular edits of their original arranges.

The song above, for example, is a custom edit of Antinomie, one of the many remixes that have been made of the song Necrofantasia (ネクロファンタジア), final boss track for the Touhou game Perfect Cherry Blossoms that is played in the fight against legendary yokai  Yukari Yakumo (八雲紫). Featuring the same artists of Sweet Love, the song features Atsushi Zekken-ya (厚志(石鹸屋)) as the singer.

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