†Mephisto Waltz†
目の前に横たわる私を哀しみのメロディーが † 光輝く絶望の夢の舞台へ
Announcement
If I still have any readers out there, you'll notice that I have completely stopped updating.

I have decided to close this blog, as in, not write in it anymore. I'll leave it up for those of you looking for live reports, etc.

I have completely lost heart in being a fan of Mana. Please don't bug me with questions as to why unless you want to hear negative things about him. And before you ask, it is absolutely nothing he did, but rather what he doesn't do anymore.

If you care about THE ALFEE or Takamiy, then you can check out my site: Prince Takamiy

Anyway, thanks for reading in the past, and thanks for understanding.
Mana x Takamiy
Hello everyone! It's been a while since I've written anything, hasn't it? I should probably try to update more often like Sarah. ^^'

Anyway, I want to talk about a new artist that I've gotten into lately. In fact, I love his music so much that I feel like some great travesty has occurred that I did not learn about him sooner. I actually first heard his name when my manager told me I looked like him with a red wig on, lol...

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This is Toshihiko Takamizawa (高見沢俊彦), otherwise known as Takamiy (in his solo work). If you don't recognize him, I'm not surprised, because it seems that his fanbase in the West is tiny. Takamizawa's band The Alfee (アルフィー) has been around since 1974, and it seems that here in the West we only learn about newer artists and bands, don't we? Well that is honestly a shame because their music is absolutely wonderful. I'm just glad I can read and speak Japanese, otherwise I wouldn't know all that much about them or Takamizawa.

Anyway, while researching Takamizawa, listening to his music and watching various videos, I've learned that there are quite a number of similarities between him and Mana!! In fact, Mana fans may recognize this picture...

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When I saw this picture back in the day I didn't think much of it besides thinking his guitar looked pretty cool. Well, now I'm angry I don't have the scans from this, haha. My favorite musician with my new favorite musician -- perfect! Well, I bought the magazine this is in and had it shipped to Sarah, who will hopefully be able to translate the article. We're both interested to know what they talk about in it.

So, back to the topic of similarities!

This style of outfit for one, pointed out to me by a friend:

Screen Shot 0024-10-01 at 8.54.34 PM mana MDM white

Other things might hit or miss at triviality, but I just found them interesting. ^^ They both decided to explore their own musical freedom via solo projects that are considered "metal", and they both stand on the right side of the stage (Takami just in The Alfee, now he tends to be in the center, since he sings), and they both have (rather outrageous) ESP custom guitars created for them.

Here are a couple of Takami's. His guitars are usually angels, but also occasionally are cartoon characters (such as Felix the Cat) and even stranger things such as a bowl of soba noodles. XD In the picture with Mana above, he is holding his Angel Sword guitar.

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The first is the Rose Angel guitar in blue, and the second is the Vampire Angel (the coolest, in my opinion. I'm fairly certain its eyes glow red, because the picture on the website flashes like that. I capped it with its eyes glowing~).

And I bet Mana would really like to have this guitar....

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You can see more of Takami's beautiful angel guitars here: Angel Gallery

I also find that their music styles are slightly similar. Though Mana's music is a LOT more gothic and Takami's is leaning towards what I believe is referred to as power metal, there are still some songs that are reminiscent of each other. For instance, Ave Maria Caccini from Takami's solo album ULTRA STEEL reminds me of a few Moi dix Mois songs. Its entirely instrumental, though. In fact, several of the songs employ synth in the same way Mana does (such as harpsichord and organ).

Here is my favourite song of Takami's solo work, where the amazing Vampire Angel guitar is featured. Its called VAMPIRE ~Yuuwaku no Blood~.



Another similarity is the fact that both of them have done regular columns in magazines. As you all probably know, Mana has "Mana's Nostalgic Game Inferno" in the magazine Game Lab. Well, Takami is a HUGE Apple fan and used to (perhaps still does?) have a column in the magazine Mac Fan that was once called "Takamizawa Toshihiko's Appleism", then later changed to "Takamizawa Toshihiko's Powerbook Doctrine". (Would love to get my hands on those magazines!!) And of course, everyone knows Mana loves Macs as well!

Anyway, those are just some similarities I've noticed between them. Perhaps Takami is one of Mana's musical inspirations? I really don't know, as he's never mentioned it, but we'll see when I get the copy of Fool's Mate. ^^

In the meantime, give Takami's music a chance! He is a really talented guitarist and songwriter. I think that if you give The Alfee or Takamiy a listen to, you might really like it.

Here is my favorite song by The Alfee, エルドラド (El Dorado):



Thanks for reading, as always!

† Adamine
Reprise
How is everyone liking Reprise? When I get time, I want to write my own review of the album.

Of course, I love it. I believe my favourite song on the album might be Solitude, but its hard to pick!

What is your favourite song?

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† Adamine
Reprise
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Have you preordered you copy yet?

I wonder, do you notice anything different?

† Adamine
Sakura Con Q&A, サイン会、ライブレポート、日本語バージョン
日本人の皆さんへ、

セーラという友達は私のレポートを日本語で翻訳しました。

こちらへどうぞ:Sarah's Blog

† Adamine