Lucky Kilimanjaro — Quadrimestral Single Series + FRESH Review
If someone were to ask me what I think about Lucky Kilimanjaro, my first answer would probably be they’re a really fun band and I mean this in the best possible way. Their discography showing nothing but a commitment towards creating feel-good music, this latest batch of releases serves as proof to that claim, with the group exploring different emotion-driven sounds in ways that never stray away from their now trademark lively, electro sound.
First in this 4-for-1 deal is Kaze ni Naru, a fresh, rhythmic song built on synthesized strings with a super catchy main melody and lyrics that invite people to embrace fun times — even if it might seem scary — and flow like the wind. This fun number is followed by Kimi ga Odoridasuno wo Matteru, which dynamically goes from mellow to more energetic verses, all neatly tied together by Kumaki Yukimura’s vocal performance.
HOUSE is next, an aptly titled lead track that offers its listeners exactly what it says on the tin: sleek, 90s-inspired house beats, and fun lyrics about the contemporary glories of staying home and alternating between reading manga, having bedroom dance parties, and browsing through the Netflix catalog. As for the mellow Kuruma no Kage de Kiss wo, it cements the pattern of each of these b-sides being slightly less energetic than its lead single, with its main melody building upon more dreamy, lullaby-like sounds that make the single a more balanced offering.
The upbeat HOUSE is followed by Do Do Do, a track that — despite its silly title and chorus — showcases Lucky Kilimanjaro at their most melancholic (and even slightly somber) to the date, with more relaxed synths being accompanied by claps that seem to dictate the energy of the song, which reaches its energy peaks before each chorus. Keeping up with the melancholy of its a-side, Aishiteru is a stylish, yet earnest love song that maintains the single’s nighttime atmosphere but gives it a more vulnerable twist.
As for the final offering in this quadrimestral deal, Hatsukoi, the band amps up the energy once again, offering listeners a bright, fun track that brings together distorted backward vocals, stylish synth loops, and fun layered vocals into a number about feelings surging upon first meeting someone. This energy is kept all through Everything be OK, an uplifting, though slightly more mellow, b-side with an infectious main synth melody that is accompanied by dream-like bells and layered vocals.
Tying these singles together is the aptly titled FRESH EP, which serves both as a culmination point to the release series, and as a compilation of sorts to all previously reviewed lead tracks. In addition to this, the EP comes with a new song, the self-titled FRESH, an anthemic-like track with lyrics about embracing the music and keeping yourself fresh (physically and mentally) in order to make the most of each day, which is complemented by a sound that perfectly captures the group’s distinctive energy by combining catchy, sugary synth melodies with a vocal performance that grows in strength as each of the song’s verses progress.
When played together, the tracks in this series of releases feel cohesive enough to have been an album of their own, all of them driven by a sparkly energetic sound that makes them feel lively (even when most mellow), but also cohesive. Energetic, fun music is where Lucky Kilimanjaro are at their most comfortable, and the way these singles allow them to explore different emotions through said sound seems to indicate this comfort might lead them towards exciting things in the nearby future.