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Saturday, November 5, 2016

Song of the Week! 5 November 2016

It's quite rare for me to find a Namco Original I don't like, let alone one that is also disliked by aquabluu/pikaby as well. So you can imagine our surprise when a song regarded like that also got a sequel!...

...Today we're talking about both of these songs. Brr...

 Buru-chan no Oyatsu (ブルちゃんのおやつ)
Allx2 (122)x4 (187)x5 (306)x6 (456/410/353)
All (2P)x2 (119/119)x4 (175/175)x5 (306/306)x6 (456/410/353) (video)
 Taiko PS2 4, Taiko PSP 2, CD 2008

A new song request from chatbox user kathy compels me to a different writing job than usual, but don't worry- we're here to give you any nook and cranny of each of the featured songs without any kinds of bias! (still, feel free to pick me up for typos or grammar errors in general, as these keep on popping up regardless of song preferences...)

...anyway, what we're looking up here is one of those old-days Namco Original songs that are actually coming from a previously-launched Namco videogame, in the same fashion of other tracks like the Katamari Damashii 'secret song' Ra Morena Kumonai. In fact, Buru-chan no Oyatsu (lit. 'Bull-chan's Snack') is a custom arrangement of the voice clips and BGM tunes featured in the medal/prize game Buru-chan no Motto Tabetai-wan! (ブルちゃんのもっとたべたいワン!, lit. "Bull-chan's I Want to Eat More-Woof!").

Released in 1991, this arcade game's objective is to throw candies at the titular Bull-chan by pressing one button with the right timing, while Bull-chan's head and lower jaw are constantly moving; if the player throws 6 candies into Bull-chan's mouth before the play jingle is over, a prize is delivered in a lower tray. To have a more clear idea about how the game is played with decently-clear audio recordings, you can also take a look at this video!

The original jingles for said arcade game were composed and lyricized by the Namco-affiliated Yasuaki Matsuada (松田泰昭), with Mio Ishida (石田実緒) and Tomomitsu Kaneko (金子智充) respectively providing the female voice and Bull-chan's lines. For this peculiar revival in Taiko no Tatsujin gaming, the song was arranged by recurrent Taiko series contributor Yuri Misumi (みすみゆり), featuring a brand-new guitar accompaniment provided by Taku Ishii (石井拓). This song was originally made around the launch window of the 8th Taiko arcade as it was originally intended to be its debut Taiko title; however, due to the lack of popularity among an inside-company popularity vote, Buru-chan no Oyatsu premiered on the 4th main PlayStation 2 game instead as an unlockable tune, with a console revival slated to another Sony game years later.

Being a Godaime-and-onwards debut Namco Original, Buru-chan no Oyatsu features a full 2-player notechart set for all difficulties, with Oni mode also sporting the forked-paths gimmick. Pull out an accurate-enough performance in this 6-star challenge and you'll be served with quite the relentless cluster succession for older charts' rating standards, even including some timid 1/24 clusters!

 Buru-chan no Oya2 (ブルちゃんのおや2)
All arcade, Taiko PSP DXx4 (107)x5 (173)x6 (254)x7 (575)
Taiko Wii 2x4 (107)x5 (167)x6 (248)x7 (575)
 Taiko 12, 12 Zoryoban, Taiko PSP DX, Taiko Wii 2, CD Full Combo

While the original Buru-chan no Oyatsu has had a short life, a longer life cycle was reserved for its very own sequel song arrangement! Now featuring a punny Japanese title with the number 2 in it instead of the 'tsu' portion in letters, Buru-chan no Oya2 is the final outcome of Namco sound engineer Masanobu Murakami (政信村上) remixing Buruchan no Oyatsu into a more tempo-irregular remixed product with even more lines from the original prize arcade, such as the 'Harapeko Harapeko!' Game Over ending that could be heard if Bull-chan didn't eat enough candies for him to give a prize to the player. Speaking again of Masanobu Murakami, his most prominent role for the Taiko no Tatsujin series has been the track remixing/rearrangement duties that were necessary for the creation of nearly every official Taiko soundtrack released by Namco, (supposedly) including the more-limited albums like the Sorairo Version one.

Aside from the notechart changes concerning the song's Wii port when compared to the others (due to the signature giant notes), the biggest notable change is an odd song re-titling that is briefly displayed on Taiko 12/12 Asia/12 Zoryoban's song selection wheel when Buru-chan no Oya2 is highlighted, shortly before its button is expanded as usual:


The phrase above is translatable as "Hungry Journey Chapter II~Buru-chan no Oya2~I Want to Eat 1 (as in 'once') More (Classic ed.)" which, due to the song selection's peculiar nature in Taiko arcades from 10 to 14, is currently an arcade-exclusive reference, only remarked in its soundtrack released and never mentioned anywhere else to this day.

The second chapter in Bull-chan's hungry Taiko journey is a more technical chart that runs under the same BPM speed of the former song, while packing in more notes and playing with the song's own tempo for some small-cluster rhythm trickery.

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