Prod. by: Yasutaka Nakata
EnigmaChords Rating: 8/10.
Notable Tracks: Story, Flash, Cosmic Explorer, Sweet Refrain.
Want 14 tracks of upbeat electronic music complimented by cutesy Japanese vocals? Of course you do. Cue ‘Cosmic Explorer,’ the fifth album from Japanese girl trio Perfume. Released in April 2016, the album delivers refreshing electronic, dance-y, J-poppy content that is typical of the Hiroshima-based girl group.
As great as it is to hear the group stick to the stylistic norms that their audience know and love, it has to be said that it was somewhat easy to predict what the album would sound like. Take that as you will – some people may like how predictable this group are and be thankful that they’re sticking to their signature style, other particularly critical people may be a bit disappointed that there’s not much new being brought to the surface stylistically. Perhaps it’s simply just the way Yasutaka Nakata works, who has written and produced all five of their albums.
Whichever way you see this album, it cannot be denied that Perfume just have a way of capturing everything catchy and listenable in their tracks. Bass drops, layers of synth… typical synthpop and EDM elements merged with upbeat J-Pop jingles and topped off with the sweet trills of the three members; Nocchi, Kashiyuka and A~chan.
The album features tracks such as Story, Flash and its title track, Cosmic Explorer – three of my personal favourites and similarly popular among other critics. There’s just something about them that I can play over and over again and enjoy continuously without getting bored.
The album is available as a stand-alone CD, as a double CD and DVD bundle, and on blue-and-orange coloured vinyl (I’m sure a standard black vinyl is also available however I personally couldn’t find it on Discogs.)