We update with 10 new J-Pop songs once each month, on the day first day of each month.


RSS feed for our song reviews can be found at: https://jtop10.mymti.org/category/j-pop-song-reviews/feed


1. Gottz feat. Ryugo Ishida & MUD – The Lights

Eric’s thoughts: The bespectacled MC, Gottz, has definitely composed a heck of a track. Featuring Ryugo Ishida on the chorus, The Lights had me bobbing my head from beat one. I dug their take on a more western style song. Definitely add this to any chill out mix. 7 out of 10

Download from iTunes: https://itunes.apple.com/jp/album/the-lights-feat-ryugo-ishida-mud/1437640119?i=1437640425


2. さユり (Sayuri) × MY FIRST STORY- レイメイ (Reimei)

Eric’s thoughts: The pure JRock explosion that kicks off this song hits me right in the feels. Before doing some additonal research, I noted that this sounds like it would be a 2nd OP to any anime, and low and behold this is in fact the 2nd OP to Golden Kamuy. Perhaps we should brand a new style of JRock, something like ARock or Anime Rock. Its a style most anime fans will recognize immediately. 7 out of 10

Download from iTunes: https://itunes.apple.com/jp/album/%E3%83%AC%E3%82%A4%E3%83%A1%E3%82%A4-single/1443995128


3. スキマスイッチ (Sukima Switch) – クリスマスがやってくる (Christmas ga Yatte Kuru)

Eric’s thoughts: I have a soft spot in my heart for this kind of jazz that’s a little more polished and even a bit (dare I say) cheesy. The song itself is as sweet as a strawberry Christmas cake and just what we might need for a holiday season, something that makes us smile and we can enjoy at least once in a while. 6 out of 10

Download from iTunes: https://itunes.apple.com/jp/album/id1443964316?app=itunes


4. RADWIMPS – そっけない (Sokkenai)

Eric’s thoughts: This song is a little bit of a departure for listeners like myself who are more familiar with RADWIMPS’ pop rock numbers from the Your Name soundtrack. This song has more of an R&B feel to it, and a sense of melancholy floating on the surface of the melody. The guitar has a great spacey feel to it that adds another dimension to the piece. 7 out of 10

Download from iTunes: https://itunes.apple.com/jp/album/%E3%81%9D%E3%81%A3%E3%81%91%E3%81%AA%E3%81%84/1442510894?i=1442511586&ign-mpt=uo%3D2


5. 宇多田ヒカル (Hikaru Utada) – Don’t Think Twice

Eric’s thoughts: This song marks Utada’s return to lending her talents to the Kingdom Hearts franchise, following ‘Simple and Clean’ and ‘Sanctuary’. I love how sampling actual instruments in the track, and pulling back from the more digital effects from the other two songs, gives this number a sense of maturity. I believe I also hear some ghosts of the Simple and Clean melody in the beginning of the song. 8 out of 10

Download from iTunes: https://itunes.apple.com/us/album/hatsukoi/1386775108


6. 中村中 (Ataru Nakamura) – 箱庭 (Hako Niwa)

Eric’s thoughts: I like the 80’s style synth that opens this song. The bass definitely belongs in a club well past midnight, but the song as a whole was never dynamic enough to really hold my attention. 5 out of 10

Download from iTunes: https://itunes.apple.com/jp/album/%E3%82%8B%E3%81%A4%E3%81%BC/1444814823?l=en


7. 星野源 (Gen Hoshino) – Pop Virus

Eric’s thoughts: I like the use of jazz guitar in the beginning to add some smoothness to this new jam from Hoshino. When the drums and occasional synth come in, it highlights Gen Hoshino’s patented soulful style. The only complaint I would have is that the strings definitely sound a lot like his other songs, specifically ‘Doraemon’. 8 out of 10

Download from iTunes: https://itunes.apple.com/jp/album/pop-virus/1444990715


8. Drop’s – Cinderella

Eric’s thoughts: This band of talented women from Hokkaido really kill it with this song. I dug the upbeat feel the song had, and the mixing allowed me to enjoy the musicianship of all the members. 7 out of 10

Download from iTunes: https://itunes.apple.com/jp/album/id1444716602?l=ja&ls=1&app=itunes


9. 三浦大知 (Daichi Miura) – Blizzard

Eric’s thoughts: This song has a great element of ‘build’, building from the intro to the chorus when the song really opens up, and back down again for the next verse. But while I dug this about the song, I can’t say I enjoyed the whole thing. 5 out of 10

Download from iTunes: https://itunes.apple.com/jp/album/blizzard-single/1440448452


10. Satellite Young – Take on Me (J-Pop Version)

Eric’s thoughts: I had mention earlier how 80s style synth can add alot to a song, but can feel a bit redundant after a while. Satellite Young, while totally capturing that style, add enough of a modern feel to this cover to keep it feeling interesting as you continue to listen to it. I really like the breakdown in the middle of it! 7 out of 10

Download from iTunes: https://itunes.apple.com/us/album/take-on-me-single/1445983953