This is Nami Tamaki’s second single under Teichiku Records. It was released October 10, 2012.
This cover is kind of busy, with all the colors and patterns and objects, but Nami looks pretty so I guess that’s okay. The other cover isn’t much better, in my opinion.
I’m glad Nami ditched R&B for the electro route because I love PARADISE. This smart, sleek tune features prominent synths, simple but danceable beats, and one of the most natural-sounding vocals we’ve heard from Nami in a while. For most of the verses, she’s singing comfortably in her chest voice, and when she goes into her upper register she never sounds strained or awkward. The melody contains some really interesting turns, like a sudden dip in the pre-chorus that caught me by surprise. I also have to applaud the lyrics, which, though not exactly poetry, are definitely catchy and fun (the “feel so good tonight” and “here is my paradise” parts are so easy to sing). As far as new directions go, I’m pretty pleased with this fun, catchy, harmless tune.
Unfortunately, I wasn’t quite as impressed by COLORS. It’s basically another electro track that attempts to be fierce, but there’s no discernable passion behind the instrumental or Nami’s vocal. It is a bit catchy, and the bridge is kind of interesting, so it has those things going for it. Other than that, though, I can’t really bring myself to label this song as anything other than decent.
Summary: I’ve missed Nami. She seemed to have gone away semi-permanently after her major growing pains (aka STEP), and I was wondering which direction she’d take if she came back, which I figured she might. Thankfully, PARADISE is a pretty solid track, combining the fun dance style of the Nami we all know and love with some new, trendy and unusual melodies. The B-side, on the other hand… eh. Not terrible, but not great either. I think Nami has chosen the right trajectory for her career musically, but she’s going to have to come up with some stellar tracks for me to start really believing in her again.
Single Grade: B-