Itoyuyushi – pre-release commentary

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Wohooo! It’s been more than a year since my last pre-release commentary! What do we have this time…?

Itoyuyushi is an album made to celebrate Ghostly Field Club and Perfect Cherry Blossom’s 20th anniversary, so all the tracks come from those two works (mainly the former). It’s a not a very exciting concept – it feels like the Pig didn’t have any better idea, but I’m partially fine with this one. Ghostly Field Club is the beginning point of the Hifuu Club. BUTAOTOME has always been huge fans of Renko and Merry’s world, so I think it makes sense for them to celebrate it! Also, I take this over a DDC 10th anniversary album.

The title is… well, interesting, and hard to translate. Yuyushi is a word from old Japanese with multiple meanings depending on the context. Wikitionary gives the following:

  1. Sacred and fearful.
  2. Ominous. Abominable.
  3. Extremely great.
  4. Wonderful. Splendid.
  5. Horrible.

A modern/kanji version of this word would be 忌忌しい, and we do see two 忌 kanjis on the cover. Its main standalone meaning is “mourning”, and a lot of the words featuring this kanji are associate with death, hate, and unluck. So, I went with “truly heavenly” for my album title translation to keep its meaning of something beautiful and poetical while still being somewhat related to the afterlife and sacred.

By the way, the writings on Yuyuko’s arm translate as “All the mountains, rivers, plants and trees attain Buddhahood.”

Time to talk about the music!

Dontohare and Kaze ga Fuitara have been recycled, so they are now making their debut in CD form. They are still two amazing songs, but I’ve already talked about them in their respective reviews (expect a copy-paste in the full Itoyuyushi review). Honestly, I believe Obake no Sakurazome and Oshira Asobi were already good enough to celebrate the 20th anniversary of PCB and GFC.

We also have two re-arranges of old songs: Ikiru and Haru no Yuki. I already love the original Ikiru, and this new version sounds amazing! It is so heavy and powerful, the style is reminiscent of the Groovy versions from the Guerrilla albums! But on the other side… I’m really not a fan of the original Haru no Yuki, and same goes for this rearrangement. But the instrumental sounds great!

Now it’s time to talk about the actually new content! We have three new songs, and all their original themes come from Ghostly Field Club.

The album opens with Mieru Mono, an arrangement of Inishie no Meikaidera that alternates calm and heavenly parts with strong and brutal ones, featuring “a drum solo worth of a death metal song” (my friend’s words, not mine)

2fun 19byou has a fun title that hopefully won’t be indicative of the song’s length. It’s an arrangement of Gensou no Eiensai, of which its related story part in Ghostly Field Club has Merry telling Renko that she is 2 minutes and 19 seconds late! I have a hunch this is one of those songs that will turn out much better in the full…

And at last… My favorite of the new songs is the third track, Tamashii Asobi, mainly for its original theme. While Magical Girls Crusade/Mahou Shoujo Juujigun is popular mainly for its GFC version, it’s still a Seihou theme in the first place, so I can say we are getting some crumbs from the West! Yes, the lyrics will almost certainly be about Hifuu, but hearing Ranko singing that familiar melody… made me feel something in my heart. I dunno, it was like “omg it’s that Seihou theme! Is this a real song?! We are getting closer to Enigma!” I guess I got a small taste of how I will feel if they’ll ever do an Enigmatic Doll arrangement. And I still hope one day my wish will come true. #MuseDeservesHerButaSong

You may have also noticed the lack of an eighth track. I do wonder if it was due to a lack of ideas, or other reasons. I think they could have easily put a random PCB song rearrangement… I think Higashi no Kuni no Waltz would have been perfect. The song is an arrangement of Necro-Fantasia, which is a PCB track first and foremost, but it’s also heavily associated with the Hifuu Club and the connection between Merry and Yukari. It would have been the perfect track to bridge PCB and GFC. Plus GFC has Necro-Fantasy – a theme BUTAOTOME has a weird aversion towards and still hasn’t arranged. It still shares a melody with Necro-Fantasia, so it would have also been a good COMPromise.

Overall, I’m partially excited about this work. As usual, I have pre-ordered it, and I’ll be sure to bring you lyrics and translations as soon as possible!

On another note, the IRON ATTACK! collab is an easy skip for me. It doesn’t really feel like a full collab, but more like a song with Ranko as guest vocalist. Comp and Ane’s contribution is super marginal, and even Ranko feels like she can be easily written out from this song – the IRON ATTACK! vocalists have much more presence (at least from the sample). Not to mention that it’s event-only… Sigh. Perhaps there will be a full album next year that would justify the exclusivity of this release, but… Event-exclusive stuff is NOT FUN.
(btw, fun fact about IRON ATTACK!: they have a Gates (Seihou character) song)

And that’s all for this post! Are you excited for this album? Tell me your opinion in the comments!