Nami Tamaki / Specialty : 3 of 5
I haven't listened to Nami Tamaki in a while (I missed her last album), but since I enjoyed Greeting so much I decided to get her new album Specialty, especially since it included a special edition DVD. Overall, I really like the CD, but I have to admit that it's hard to take it in all at once - most of the songs have the same feel and tempo (I could really use a ballad in the middle of all this!), but it's definitely true to her anime-theme style (although this album has a little more bite than Greeting). The introduction track is really cool, with it's sudden "electronic takeover", leading into Result, which sets the tone for the whole CD. Nami's voice is pure and always on pitch, even though her melodies often jump large intervals! Almost every track has a cool guitar solo with great harmonies (the solo on New World is my favorite), and most songs are over four minutes, which seems a little long every now and then. The DVD contains live footage from the CD release event (I was hoping for music videos, but it's fun to watch anyway), with Nami singing live to recorded music and groovin' with six dancers on-stage. It's a small crowd, so there's nothing extravagant going on, but it's nice to see that she can hit the notes and steps in a live venue. I'm looking forward to hearing these songs come up randomly on iTunes, but there's not enough variety to listen to this over and over in my car. I'm still a Nami fan, though, and I'm going to check out her new DVD release soon!