New SCANDAL: “Shunkan Sentimental”

SCANDAL’s songs aren’t growers: they either hook you right off the bat or end up unchecked in iTunes. Last year’s singles compilation BEST★SCANDAL highlighted this perfectly, the best numbers (“Koi Moyou,” “SAKURA Goodbye”) firing off from the get-go and pulling listeners far in enough to hit them with the band’s best skill – the ability to pen a catchy chorus. With SCANDAL, first impression really are everything.

“Shunkan Sentimental” doesn’t make a very strong one. Opening with some “dangerous” sounding squaks, the group’s latest single then flirts with goofy territory before settling on a so-so riff for the verse. The song does manage to get better as it goes on though with the addition of backing vocals and, of course, a good chorus. Still, “Shunkan Sentimental” ends up being an unmemorable cut of J-Rock and one of the group’s weaker efforts. Considering this song serves as the new ending theme for a cartoon in Japan, it’s not outrageous to think SCANDAL’s playing it a little safe to lasso in more listeners. Fine business move, but musically “Shunkan Sentimental” doesn’t grab fast enough.

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