If you could see me now …
I wonder what you would think …
Me, living without you
I can’t believe that I’ll never see you again
I haven’t told you anything yet..,..
— Utada Hikaru.
There is no real story to this music video; there is only art, sounds, more art, intriguing tones, more art, and beautiful voice. Enjoyment, because she has such a beautiful and charming voice, Utada Hikaru, the majority of her songs usually feature so much of her passion and soul within it. While everything in the world is destroyed and withers away like flower petals, “There is still hope … there is still love to be found,” she said. No matter how frightening and torn apart the world may be, we always going to find … love–
Okay okay … that is a too strong paragraph for just the kick-off of this post. But to be honest, that is exactly what this music reflect and explain, or at least, that is how my feelings interpreted after listening to it. But first of all, for your information, this entire music is the official theme and soundtrack for the remake of Evangelion tetralogy. But don’t worry if you haven’t watched those movies yet, this music video won’t reveal the spoiler for the story in it. So if you’re a spoiler geek, you’re okay to watch this, I urge you to watch this!
Don’t forget to put your headset on before you click this to play!
background settings – the audiography.
Like I said before, there is no story or plot on this, so let’s skip that sections.
Sakura Nagashi, is what the music titled, it’s a song that written and sang by Hikaru Utada. “Who is she?” you may ask. Well, do you know who Ayumi Hamasaki is? or Koda Kumi, Namie Amuro, or Yui? Those people are some famous Japanese singer who probably every otaku knows because they fill in the soundtrack for popular anime such as Bleach, InuYasha, and even One Piece. But in back 2012, the Diva has returned … Utada wrote this song at the express interest of the staff for the Evangelion movie series. Although on hiatus at the time, she wrote and composed the song due to her appreciation of the movie series; she had also composed the theme for the previous two remake of Evangelion films.
A website was set up for this particular song, which also includes the music video that uploaded to Utada’s new YouTube channel in November 2012. The video remained on the channel for three days before being deleted. It was instead replaced by a shortened version of the video —and by the way, the music video above is the full-length version of this music, so you should thank me for providing it to you guys, lol. Anyway, this music was described by the fans as a sentimental and beautiful, it is a requiem for life full of literary elegance.
The song itself doesn’t follow the standard song structure, instead opting for a build-up of intensity throughout, before heavy tones of drums and guitars end the piece, really reflects the similarity to other works by Utada. And the lyrics … oh God, the lyrics. It implies the mourning for your beloved, with the hidden message from the original soundtrack of the movie, the full version has to tell me more about the death and rebirth of our world.
background settings – the videography.
For your information, this video has won the Cannes International Film Festival Grand Prix as well as the Caméra d’Or (you can ask Google-sensei about what kind of award those is). When Utada stepped onto the stage, she said, “Because we live in a time such as this, I wanted to incorporate the message of the need to value the things that are presently and immediately around us and can be touched.” So deep … isn’t it?
As for the visual assessment, the video depicts various images of scenery that only present around the world of Evangelion, such as fields of red desert, the crashing red waves (illustrating the ‘world impact’ and blood that has been shed), the crosses, the medicines and a small tent (Rei’s, illustrating the loneliness), a baby and its mother (Shinji’s, the main character in the Evangelion story,) the tree next to the piano in NERV headquarter, complete with Shinji’s recording tape. This one video also one of a few which doesn’t feature Utada’s appearance, the same goes to her soundtrack themes of the previous two movies, such as the song titled Beautiful World … for me, this gesture is her reluctant to present herself and behave tacky like the way Diva does.
This is like I said before, this was what left from the beauty of humankind, erased by the death by its people … and rebirth itself as a new world. But before it comes to the beautiful one like before, the world needs to go through the destruction to makes people remember what have they done.
we need to talk more.
I don’t think that I’ve talked enough about this, yet.
What I want to tell you is, how much this song has amazed me. Sakura Nagashi is a beautiful and thrilling five minutes piece of art. This music video has shown me the perfect performance of a Diva’s melodious voice, together with the beautiful string arrangements, build it as a slow tone like a sleeping song, then it’s bloomed out at the end, evoking the feeling as if the shedding of cherry blossoms lives and breathes its own life.
At the beginning, there was a soft piano along with a so loving tone of voice, lowers the alto to my ear. It’s as if you’re reluctant to wake up in the morning, but seeing the beautiful cloud under the sunrise, the cool air from the shade of a tree has made you awake and spirited. It’s such a beautiful stealthy voice. She’s yelling, she sounds like crying, then she calms again. But then the organ comes out of nowhere, along with the string and drums, together with Utada’s soft soprano voice. Almost in the end, a violin and electric guitar moved my heart.
Then all the things get to the top, reaching the point where my ears wanting back something that more and more melodious, until my mind thrown back to her low tone, along with an old lamp that turned bright in the visual. Then it stops, the old lamp dims. There is a curious pause of seconds, until it starts again to build up the spirit … looking for a new love.
Starts again with the softens tone, —waiting for something more deep and beautiful— as if believing that heaven is in sight. Until the drum adds to the magnificence of the song. Comes the destruction- the rebirth of this world. The sadness, a cry out of Shinji colouring the visual, following the red of blood flooding the Earth. The red ball has been eaten by the monster of Evangelion, the sky now are red and black … even the tree next to their piano has no longer exist, all the lives on Earth flying and death without the gravity, until ‘the angel’ stab its own body. The gravel of the building falling down to Earth, a goodbye scene from Kaoru, while our protagonist remembers back the memories of them playing the piano together, Shinji was crying, his pupil expanding as the eyes turn black.
The music ends with a beautiful nagareboshi in the sky.
This is such- oh my Gosh, how do I put this? The ending of the song is a climax which adds this piece of art a thrilling atmosphere. After the three minutes of oscillating feelings, the string accompaniment finally arises and arouses, the drum beats and the guitar strikes dynamically accelerate along with the rising of falsetto soprano voice. Takes you running towards a lonely field paradise where a tree next to its piano stays. As the world self-destructive, people crying, the Earth is red, the cherry blossom has departed and sinking.
For me, this song is like powerful lines that can bring old wounds back to the surface. Of course, each people would feel the different feedback depends on their past. But for me, this song is a beautiful rose with a venomous thorn that will make you feel alone. And as for people like me, the kind of human who enjoys crying out in the corner of his own room … this is like the soundtrack of my life. It combines a dazzling harmony with its sad and frustrating lyrics, logging for the happiness … forever until it founds love.
closing – nesha’s final verdict.
I don’t think that I need to write the conclusion. The animation is so beautiful and the overall video is a well put together piece of art. Thanks to the producers for all their hard work, and major love and respect for Utada for her performance. Last week, she just released a new performance titled “Anata” which you can check on her official page or look at her VEVO.
I wanted to give this music video a nine out of ten score just because it really has given me a shocking experience, since the first time I heard it when watching the third remake movie of Evangelion, and more again when watching this full version music video. But I can’t give it though I want it. From the quality assessment, entering a talking character to the frame is a wrong choice while in the background, Utada is singing (I know this because I also made an anime music video years ago.) I also found an inconsistency in a few transition of scenes, which not really balanced to the music in the background. But besides that, everything is perfect. So here I am, give this music video an eight out of ten.
- Sakura Nagashi
- premiered in fall, 19.09.2016
- nesha review of an anime music
- from the studio of Khara
- tagged under the genre of #action, #sci-fi, #music, #drama, and #mecha
- the age-rated as PG-13 – Teens 13 or older
And that’s it. Thank you for reading, I really appreciate a lot of you reading this until the end. I know that my perspective of episodes and music videos that I’ve been reviewed previously always talking more about its visual and how it hides the meaning behind it. But for this one, I think the studio and everyone who produces it put the much more effort on the music production rather than the visual, considering the story was taken from the scenes of the movie with a little editing.
And as for you who haven’t watch the tetralogy yet, you can read my perspective about the Evangelion series and decide yourself whether it worth your time watching it or not. And as usual, don’t forget to follow #moe404 to get more anime perspective just like this, and leave a like below to demand me to keep writing about anime.
Alright, I’ll end this post with the most arousing sentence of the lyrics.
However great the fear, I will not look away …
If at the end of everything, there is love …
In the end
Everybody finds love..,..
— Utada Hikaru.