Kyary Pamyu Pamyu’s 2012 sophomore effort Pamyu Pamyu Revolution was a complete package of messy organization, sugary sweet J-Pop confectionary, the most glittery-yet-depthless lyrical content, and a super-duper Kyary Kawaii-realness format that basically moulded the entire creation together, and one of the most original J-Pop entries in recent history. So it’s no surprise that the following effort, 2013’s Nanda Collection, tries to do the same exact thing… just with different songs. Like her previous album, Kyary showcases that her image (colored wigs, fake eyelashes, contact lens, ridiculously cute outfits, you know the rest of the story…) is the album’s main attraction. But this time round, instead of wearing literally anything her big porcelain eyes set onto, she manages to restrict a bit more of the feathers and fluff (minus the color).
Whilst Japan’s electro producer Yasutaka Nakata creates yet another batch of extremely sugary and cute J-pop tunes, the album’s main theme heads towards coming-of-age, as the album was in fact released as Kyary entered her 20s. This approach is helmed in tracks such as the celebratory anthems “Kimini 100 Percent” and “Furisodeshon”. But that is all left in the dark once she hits out on child-friendly tunes such as the ninja-aesthetic-wise “Ninja Re Bang Bang”, the breezy and juvenile “Super Scooter Happy”, and the electro-tastic sounds of “Saigo no Ice Cream”. Unlike her previous album, Nanda Collection proves to be a collection of not only J-Pop fierceness, but a cohesive structure of weird, inanimate, cute, and surprising Japanese culture; she’s a ninja in “Ninja Re Bang Bang”, then she’s some alien-hostess in “Invader Invader”, and young girl maturing into adulthood in “Furisodeshon”, amongst many other creations.
Nakata manages to even throw in a bit of Westernized Top 40 dubstep swipes in the song “Invader Invader”, and some very funky and jiggly pop rock sounds into the Halloween feast of “Fashion Monster”. The three album tracks; “Me”, “Noriko To Norio”, and “Kura Kura” prove to be the butt moments on the album, but even they, despite their sloppy and less-cute sound, manage to bring forth a personality and quality that works in vein of the album.
Overall, Nanda Collection is a surprisingly excellent soundtrack of Japanese culture and production. Whilst Pamyu Pamyu Revolution may have offered some sounds and styles that came off completely original and compelling, the exciting factors and fun energy from Kyary really shines through Nanda Collection, and with its catchy hooks and glossy production, it’s easily as equal and superb as her first album.
Track list (Bold means best tracks)
- Nanda Collection
- Ninjari Bang Bang
- Kimi ni 100 Percent
- Super Scooter Happy
- Invader Invader
- Fashion Monster
- Saigo ni Ice Cream
- Noriki to Norio
- Furisodeshion ~Liam’s favorite~
- Kura Kura
- Otona na Kodomo