Single review: “X-encounter” by Maon Kurosaki

Release date: 6th of November, 2013

Track list:
1. X-encounter
2. unchain.
3. X-encounter (Instrumental)
4. unchain. (Instrumental)

Moira: Regular
Austin: Georgia

1. X-encounter
A layer of pulsating synths and distorted guitars open the track, and before long, are joined by a powerful digital beat to welcome Maon’s filtered vocals. Hooray for muffled vocals! (In a good way) Filtering the vocals to make it sound distorted goes hand in hand with the arrangement of the song, which is filled to the brim with synths and dubstep-like beats. The arrangement is heavily electronic with rock influences; it sounds like what you would get if you mixed Minori Chihara’s Usotsuki ParADox with any Maon rock song, especially something from H.O.T.D.. The chorus is the sharp part of the song, with Maon’s strong and clear vocals paired up with that piano and the techno rhythm creates an engaging and powerful set-up. What I really liked about this song was that everything seemed to go well with each other. The heavy, trance-inducing synths are the main rhythm, while the guitars are the instrumental backbone that complimented the vocals. At the same time, the electronic beat pushes the song along, and piano is used sparingly for some variety as well. I’m pretty sure I can say that we both like X-encounter quite a lot.

2. unchain.
An explosion of electric guitars, synths, drums, and bass guitars creates the opening here. Already present in the beginning of the song are some edgy lead guitar lines, which makes you wonder what else this song has in store. The verses are fairly plain but satisfactory, mostly just there to serve as a build-up to the chorus instead of being anything that special. Maon retains the same register with her vocals throughout the song. Just like the verses, the chorus is quite plain. It feels as if her voice is riding on the coetails of the instruments to get through the chorus and verses, but there are times where she stands out by bringing on a high note. The whole sound of the song is something I’m sure Maon fans have grown accustomed to, especially since it’s quite reminiscent of previous songs like Sen no Homura and Distrigger. This fact is even evident in her vocal register, as she uses her head voice and hits a number of high notes like in the aforementioned songs. Everything considered, this song is still quite enjoyable because… It’s what Maon fans would expect from her, a song that is similar to previous tracks that uses her headstrong vocals.

This single offered us an excellent electronic-styled anime opening, as well as an up-to-standard, rock-based B-side. Both are entertaining, however X-encounter was the stronger track overall. Moira summed it up pretty well there… Fans of Maon should be definitely happy with this single, just like how we are.

Rating: 4/5

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10 thoughts on “Single review: “X-encounter” by Maon Kurosaki

    • I love X-encounter to the point of giving it probably a 4.5 out of 5. It’s pretty unique for a Maon song, and it’s just great in general. Also, electro+rock = for the win. What would you rate it?

      I’m not sure what Austin would rate it on its own, but I think he’ll reply tomorrow since he’s sleeping right now, lol >.<

      P.S. You're up at this time?!?!

      • Oh, so does that mean for collaborative reviews, you’re in charge of the scores?

        I’m about to go to bed haha. Me and staying up late don’t go well together :-P. Usually.

        Oh, and I thought your font choice was much easier to distinguish than the one I talked to you about before. Maybe it would be better with Georgia and Georgia (italics) but I don’t really know lol. Anyway, I’m happy enough as it is.

      • Haha, no, I’m saying that I don’t know what he would rate X-encounter, the song, by itself, but we both agreed on an overall single rating of 4. I usually suggest a rating and Austin will say if he agrees or disagrees. If the latter, we just average it out. Most cases though, like this one, we both agree on a rating easily.

        About to go to bed as well, hehe :]

        The font choices are good? I’m glad. The HTML coding is a pain though, since I have to do it for every separate part. I’ll check out Georgia and Georgia (Italics) together :)

      • Yeah I was just wondering if you used one font then maybe you’d only have to do one HTML tag, and then be able to press Ctrl-I when you wanted to switch, which might be easier.

  1. Amazing single from Maon and is so different from her usual sound that I love it!
    I think that maybe because unchain. sounds like the usual her, I prefer it over the A-side.(is just that is a little long than I expected for this type of sound), but definitely my favorite single from her

    • For us, the fact that unchain. had her usual sound was a significant factor in our preference of the A-side instead. But yes, this single is definitely a strong one, and also one of her best! :3

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