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Haruka Tooku ni Mieteita Kyou released!

Oku Hanako’s ninth album, titled Haruka Tooku ni Mieteita Kyou / 遥か遠くに見えていた今日 (“Today When I Could See Far in the Distance”), has been released! I missed posting all the status updates in the past month, so I’ll cover everything here.

The album comes in two editions: the regular edition and the limited edition. The limited edition comes with a DVD.

Here are the album covers:

Album art for "Haruka Tooku ni Mieteita Kyou (CD+DVD)

Album art (CD+DVD)


Album art for "Haruka Tooku ni Mieteita Kyou (CD only)

Album art (CD only)

The final track list:

  1. Rainy day
  2. Koi no Hajimari / 恋のはじまり (“Beginning of Love”)
  3. Ai to Iu Takaramono / 愛という宝物 (“A Treasure Called Love”)
  4. Propose / PUROPŌZU / プロポーズ
  5. Kanojo / 彼女 (“Her”)
  6. 365 Nichi no Hanataba / 365日の花束 (“365-Day Bouquet”)
  7. Kimi no Hana / キミの花 (“Your Flower”)
  8. Honobono Ikou / ほのぼの行こう (“Let’s Go Warm the Heart”)
  9. Omoide ni Nare / 思い出になれ (“Become a Memory”)
  10. Saigo no Kiss / 最後のキス (“Last Kiss”)
  11. Mail
  12. Ice Cream / AISU KURĪMU / アイスクリーム
  13. Stamp Rally / SUTANPU RARĪ / スタンプラリー
  14. Haruka Tooki ni / 遥か遠くに (“Towards the Distance”)

Already released in previous singles were “Ai to Iu Takaramono“, “Kimi no Hana“, “Omoide ni Nare”, and “Saigo no Kiss”. “Honobono Ikou” were previously released online. “Rainy Day” is a re-arrangement of her 2003 indies song. “Propose” is the CM song for a December 2016 MAST commercial.

More info and digest video →

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Happy Birthday to “The Pancake House Girl” Hanako Oku!

I reblog Denny’s birthday wishes to Oku Hanako every year, and this year will be no different. Sure, I reblogged them in previous years because I forgot to make a post, but I didn’t forget this year! My post will go up in about 13 hours so that the post is dated “March 20”, but in the meantime, to make up for the time zone difference, here’s Denny wishing her a happy birthday.

Denny Sinnoh

Japan is twelve hours ahead of me, so Snivy and I wanted to be the first in my time zone to wish “the Little Great One” Ms. Hanako Oku-san a HAPPY BIRTHDAY tomorrow (today) on March 20! She is lucky — her Birthday is always the Spring Equinox.

Ms. Oku has always been one of my favorites. Of course, Snivy is a huge fan. The adorable and talented Ms. Oku has written the opening theme song “Kimi No Hana” for the romance anime “Seiren” currently streaming on Crunchyroll.

The marketing geniuses at the Pony Canyon record company have blocked any and all Hanako Oku music videos in Unova, so it is difficult for us to share the song over YourTube, or Twatter, or Glueggle +, etc.  One of these links might work however.

https://en.musicplayon.com/Hanako-Oku-Kimi-No-Hana-635494.html

http://www.jpopasia.com/hanakooku/videos/62181/kimi-no-hana-%E3%82%AD%E3%83%9F%E3%81%AE%E8%8A%B1/

It is a pretty good anime theme. A good anime theme always gets you…

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New album announced: Haruka Tooku ni Mieteita Kyou / 遥か遠くに見えていた今日

Pony Canyon announced today that Oku Hanako will be releasing a new album on May 17. Its title is Haruka Tooku ni Mieteita Kyou / 遥か遠くに見えていた今日 (“Today When I Could See Far in the Distance”). This will be her ninth album.

The album will have a total of 14 songs. These are the ones announced so far:

The first four of these are the A-sides of her most recent double A-side singles. “Propose” is a new CM song for MAST, which I expect to be distinct from the MAST jingle that she’s already known for. “Rainy Day” is one of her indies songs from 2003. Based on the article, I expect to hear an interesting arrangement, possibly with layered voices, but I really hope it doesn’t turn out like the new arrangement of Tsumiki / 積木.

In addition, the first orders will also have an accompanying DVD with music video clips for Kimi no Hana, Saigo no Kiss, “and others”.

Kimi no Hana / キミの花

Kimi no Hana / キミの花: “Your Flower”

kimi / キミ
“you”. Written out in katakana, possibly for stress (i.e. “your flower” as opposed to “your flower“)
no / の
A particle indicating possession. Roughly equivalent to “of”.
hana / 花
“flower”

Oku Hanako’s new double A-side single, Kimi no Hana/Saigo no Kiss / キミの花/最後のキス has been released!

I’ve taken a listen to the songs on the single and it seems to be a bit of a departure from her usual style. If you’ve heard the TV size version of Kimi no Hana from either Seiren or the short music videos, you’ll know that the song features the piano less prominently and takes on a more rock style. I’ll briefly discuss my opinion on the other two songs afterwards.

I was going to publish this post yesterday, but I figured you wouldn’t mind the wait if it were to provide a good translation. I found a translation by Nakari Amane, but it needed so much editing that I ended up just making my own. My translation is available below, and my translation notes are available. As this is my first complete translation of a song, any corrections are appreciated.

Here’s the music video:

HO – KnH by Aysohmay [Dailymotion]

I’m actually okay with this. I still prefer her older piano works wish she would do more of that style, but I don’t think I’d complain too much if we got more of this. Although it’s not prominent, if you listen closely, the piano is still an important part of the song, where instead of the piano being singled out as being the more important instrument (other than the part after the pre-chorus), it works together with the others to create a beautiful song. The more I listen to this song, the more I appreciate it.

More thoughts and lyrics →

Kimi no Hana / キミの花 cover art released!

The cover art for Oku Hanako’s upcoming double A-side single Kimi no Hana/Saigo no Kiss / キミの花/最後のキス was released today her blog as well as on the Pony Canyon news site.

Here’s the cover for the regular edition:

Kimi no Hana/Saigo no Kiss / キミの花/最後のキス regular edition cover art

Kimi no Hana/Saigo no Kiss / キミの花/最後のキス regular edition cover art

And here’s the cover for the Seiren edition, featuring the three main girls of the series – Tsuneki Hikari, Touno Kyouko and Miyamae Tooru:

Kimi no Hana/Saigo no Kiss / キミの花/最後のキス Seiren edition cover art

Kimi no Hana/Saigo no Kiss / キミの花/最後のキス Seiren edition cover art

In addition, the Pony Canyon post includes this as promotional art:

Promotional art

Promotional art

One more month to go!

Track list for Kimi no Hana / キミの花

The track list for Oku Hanako’s upcoming single, Kimi no Hana / キミの花, was announced on Oku Hanako’s blog earlier this week! It turns out that it’ll be another double A-side single, with the other song being Saigo no Kiss / 最後のキス (“Last Kiss”).

There will be two editions of this single: a Seiren edition and a regular edition. I wondered why the Seiren edition will be cheaper when it was first announced, and apparently it won’t have the third track.

Here’s the track list:

  1. Kimi no Hana / キミの花 (“Your Flower”)
  2. Saigo no Kiss / 最後のキス (“Last Kiss”)
  3. Tsumiki / 積木 (“Building Blocks”)

Do any of these songs pop out at you? If you’re familiar with Oku-san’s more obscure works, Tsumiki / 積木 should. Tsumiki was released on Oku Hanako’s first indies release, the 2000 mini album Ai no Shizuku / 愛のしずく. The original was just her singing with a drum accompaniment. Later preformances purpotedly had a piano accompaniment. I predict this arrangement will have both, possibly with electric guitars. I’m certainly looking forward to hearing this one.

As for the main song, Kimi no Hana, we have the TV edit available to us. After all, it’s being used as the OP for Seiren.


Seiren OP[“Kimi no Hana (キミの花)” by Hanako Oku] by Rin Eleksra [YouTube]

The song is very unique in her discography. It’s the only song that I know of that is restricted to a rock band arrangement (keyboard, guitar, bass, drums). Like Ai to Iu Takaramono / 愛という宝物 from her last single, it seems the keyboard is no longer the featured instrument.

There are translations on Lyrical Nonsense and Dreamsland Lyrics. There’s also a translation in GJH’s fansub release of the anime.

According to the Pony Canyon announcement, Saigo no Kiss will be like an opposite to Kimi no Hana. It will be a “broken heart” ballad with grand strings and dramatic heartfelt singing. I’m not sure what to make of that, but I’m looking forward to hearing it.

If I’ve interpreted this correctly, this cover art is only for the digital release of “TV size” release of Kimi no Hana, available on iTunes and Rekochoku:

Kimi no Hana (TV size) cover art

Kimi no Hana (TV size) cover art

If that’s the case, I expect the cover art for the February 22 release to come out in a few weeks.

All Songs Live! Blu-ray BOX released!

Oku Hanako’s All Song’s Live! Blu-ray BOX was released on Wednesday! As far as I know, it was only available through pre-order directly from Pony Canyon. I’m not aware of any plans to make a general release edition, although I think it would be foolish of them to not make one.

Pony Canyon released a digest PV earlier this month:


『奥華子 10周年ありがとう!弾き語り全曲ライブ!Blu-ray BOX』ダイジェスト映像 by ponycanyon [YouTube]

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