[News] 『A BALLADS 2』on sale 2021.04.08 [II] - Ayumi Hamasaki Sekai
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Old 21st February 2021, 02:20 PM
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『A BALLADS 2』on sale 2021.04.08 [II]

The second installment in the Ballads Best series, 18 years after A BALLADS. The main release consists of two discs with 30 songs total (subject to change), remastered from their original master tapes. Other versions will include blu-ray discs and goods (40 page photobook).

As per the TA store, the album will only include songs released after the first A BALLADS. No rearrangements or re-recordings have been mentioned in the announcement text.

=== EDITIONS ========

[2CD+2DVD+GOODS+Sumapura Music]
•11,400 (AVZ1-96674~5)

✦ TeamAyu / mu-mo shop limited edition
✦ Luxury BOX specification
✦ Digipak specification
✦ Goods: Special book (40 pages)
✦ Goods: T-shirt with jacket photo print
✦ Other jacket card included
‣ DISC-1 - CD
‣ DISC-2 - CD
‣ DISC-3 - DVD
‣ DISC-4 - DVD

[2CD+2Blu-ray+GOODS+Sumapura Music]
•12,400 (AVZ1-96676~7)

✦ TeamAyu / mu-mo shop limited edition
✦ Luxury BOX specification
✦ Digipak specification
✦ Goods: Special book (40 pages)
✦ Goods: T-shirt with jacket photo print
✦ Other jacket card included
‣ DISC-1 - CD
‣ DISC-2 - CD
‣ DISC-3 - Blu-ray
‣ DISC-4 - Blu-ray

[2CD+DVD+Sumapura Music]
•4,800 (AVCD-96668~9)

✦ sleeve packaging
‣ DISC-1 - CD
‣ DISC-2 - CD
‣ DISC-3 - DVD

[2CD+Blu-ray+Sumapura Music]
•5,200 (AVCD-96670~71)

✦ sleeve packaging
‣ DISC-1 - CD
‣ DISC-2 - CD
‣ DISC-3 - Blu-ray

[2CD+Sumapura Music]
•3,200 (AVCD-96672~3)

‣ DISC-1 - CD
‣ DISC-2 - CD


=== CD CONTENT =======
Spoiler:
31 tracks total, order undecided
01 Moments
02 JEWEL
03 momentum
04 Together When...
05 No way to say
06 CAROLS
07 HEAVEN
08 Days
09 fated
10 MOON
11 forgiveness
12 You were...
13 beloved
14 BALLAD
15 HOPE or PAIN
16 Curtain call
17 SAKURA
18 rainy day
19 TODAY
20 Life
21 Secret
22 untitled ~for her~
23 Virgin Road
24 walking proud
25 how beautiful you are
26 Zutto...
27 śternal
28 Memorial address
29 Love song
30 オヒアの木
31 春よ、来い

=== DVD/BD CONTENT ====
Spoiler:
DISC-3 - Compilation of concert performances, including
01 No way to say (ayumi hamasaki ARENA TOUR 2003-2004 A)
02 CAROLS (ayumi hamasaki ARENA TOUR 2005 A ~MY STORY~)
03 HEAVEN (ayumi hamasaki 15th Anniversary TOUR ~A BEST LIVE~)
04 Days (ayumi hamasaki ARENA TOUR 2009 A ~NEXT LEVEL~)
05 fated (ayumi hamasaki COUNTDOWN LIVE 2007-2008 Anniversary)
06 MOON (ayumi hamasaki ARENA TOUR 2016 A ~M(A)DE IN JAPAN~)
07 forgiveness (POWER of MUSIC 2011 A)
08 You were... (ARENA TOUR 2016 A ~M(A)DE IN JAPAN~)
09 beloved (POWER of MUSIC 2011 A)
10 BALLAD (Rock'n'Roll Circus Tour FINAL ~7days Special~)
11 HOPE or PAIN (PREMIUM COUNTDOWN LIVE 2008-2009 A)
12 Curtain call (COUNTDOWN LIVE 2013-2014 A)
13 SAKURA (COUNTDOWN LIVE 2019-2020 ~Promised Land~ A)
14 rainy day (ARENA TOUR 2006 A ~(miss)understood~)
15 Moments (ayumi hamasaki ARENA TOUR 2005 A ~MY STORY~)
16 JEWEL (ayumi hamasaki TROUBLE TOUR 2020 A ~サイゴノトラブル~ FINAL)
17 momentum (ayumi hamasaki COUNTDOWN LIVE 2009-2010 A ~Future Classics~)
18 Together When... (ayumi hamasaki COUNTDOWN LIVE 2012-2013 A ~WAKE UP~)
19 TODAY (ayumi hamasaki ARENA TOUR2016 A ~M(A)DE IN JAPAN~)
20 Secret (ayumi hamasaki ASIA TOUR 2007 A ~Tour of Secret~)
21 untitled ~for her~ (ayumi hamasaki COUNTDOWN LIVE 2007-2008 Anniversary)
22 walking proud (ayumi hamasaki 21st anniversary -POWER of A^3-)
23 how beautiful you are (ayumi hamasaki COUNTDOWN LIVE 2019-2020 ~Promised Land~ A)
24 Zutto... (ayumi hamasaki COUNTDOWN LIVE 2014-2015 A Cirque de Minuit )
25 śternal (ayumi hamasaki PREMIUM LIMITED LIVE A ~夏ノトラブル~)
26 Memorial address (ayumi hamasaki ARENA TOUR 2003-2004 A)
27 Virgin Road (ayumi hamasaki Rock'n'Roll Circus Tour FINAL ~7days Special~)
28 Love song (ayumi hamasaki ARENA TOUR 2012 A ~HOTEL Love songs~)
29 オヒアの木 (ayumi hamasaki PREMIUM LIMITED LIVE A ~夏ノトラブル~)

DISC-4 - Rare unreleased performances, including
01 Moments (第55回NHK紅白歌合戦)
02 JEWEL (第57回NHK紅白歌合戦)
03 momentum (ayumi hamasaki Special SHOWCASE ~Xmas Eve 2020~)
04 Together When... (ayumi hamasaki COUNTDOWN LIVE 2018-2019 A -TROUBLE-)
05 TODAY (TA LIMITED LIVE TOUR 2016)
06 春よ、来い (video clip)

=== COVERS ===========
Spoiler:
Cover photos by Kazutaka Nakamura

Stylist: Kei Ito
Haute couture: Masataka Kato
Hair: Takayuki Shibata
Makeup: Akemi Kibe


Last edited by Aderianu; 6th March 2021 at 09:12 PM.
  #2  
Old 21st February 2021, 02:46 PM
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Tracklist preview


Cover photo by Kazutaka Nakamura


Video(?) by Kazuyoshi Shimomura

Last edited by Aderianu; 21st February 2021 at 02:52 PM.
  #3  
Old 21st February 2021, 02:54 PM
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Still not over how gorgeous she looks in that photo!
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Old 21st February 2021, 02:57 PM
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I love the cover and I'm so excited for the new MV (?) she always looks amazing wearing kimonos!
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Last edited by Evan Odinson; 21st February 2021 at 03:06 PM.
  #5  
Old 21st February 2021, 03:08 PM
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I'm glad color theme is not peach/pink

Is it ayu in kimono? I can't recognize her
  #6  
Old 21st February 2021, 03:47 PM
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I can't. She looks soooo stunning at the cover. Love it.
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  #7  
Old 21st February 2021, 04:20 PM
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The original A BALLADS was soft and gentle somehow, despite the glamour. Difficult to put into words, bet it felt personal and real. This doesnít feel honest.
  #8  
Old 21st February 2021, 04:26 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Zeke. View Post
The original A BALLADS was soft and gentle somehow, despite the glamour. Difficult to put into words, bet it felt personal and real. This doesnít feel honest.
Agreed, but tbh her cover art game hasnít been on point since FIVE/Party Queen so Iím not entirely shocked. The video looks pretty promising tho assuming itís her
  #9  
Old 21st February 2021, 04:30 PM
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It’s certainly not inspiring but she and the colors are lovely.

I wonder how many versions we’ll get. Personally I’d love something like MY STORY, which had a great variety (IMO).
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  #10  
Old 21st February 2021, 04:49 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Zeke. View Post
The original A BALLADS was soft and gentle somehow, despite the glamour. Difficult to put into words, bet it felt personal and real. This doesnít feel honest.
This. It just looks like another beauty shot. If I want beauty shots, I'd buy a glossy magazine. I'm so over those beauty shots and couldn't care less how gorgeous she looks, which she does. But her looking beautiful is not the reason I fell in love with the artist 浜崎あゆみ, on the contrary.
  #11  
Old 21st February 2021, 05:02 PM
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Well it's the easy way out. You don't need a concept, nor art director, you just do a magazine photoshoot and use it for everything. It's a nice photo, but yeah, we've had a million of those by now as covers for singles and albums.
  #12  
Old 21st February 2021, 05:16 PM
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Beauty shot, which was expected in my opinion and executed fairly well this time. I wish the title text is not translucent though - solid white would appear much more confident!

In terms of cover arts with concept, in my opinion those really started at Duty and peaked at A BALLADS. Ever since Memorial Address, which was beautiful, the cover arts have become more or less beauty shots most of the time with a big face on it...
  #13  
Old 21st February 2021, 05:24 PM
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I like it.
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art thread

  #14  
Old 21st February 2021, 05:42 PM
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I really like it. It gives me an impression of her being in her thoughts during/before shooting a video or maybe a concert. That's why I see it as something more than a beauty shot It will look amazing on the box.
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  #15  
Old 21st February 2021, 05:54 PM
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Cover looks nice and I do like the color tone.
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  #16  
Old 21st February 2021, 05:55 PM
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I’m so curious what the kimono video is about though! Can’t imagine that’s for Pray for you ... but still anything can happen
  #17  
Old 21st February 2021, 07:08 PM
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She looks stunning at the cover.
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  #18  
Old 21st February 2021, 07:21 PM
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Well, it's pretty
  #19  
Old 21st February 2021, 07:48 PM
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Okay... So I'll say a terrible thing that I'm used to saying by now as regards with her releases, I wasn't expecting anything and so I'm not disappointed.

From all the information we have by now everything feels lazy. Another easy release with little effort. Unless they change their plan and add something amazing.
I don't understand the live compilation. It seems really random and just a second thought to make the release more pricey with not effort.
Doesn't fit the A BALLADS brand either to me. I know it can evolve but I don't know... I would be way more happy with just one cd, a few tracks rearranged, a GORGEOUS concept that's following the first one and that's it.

This release feels like a mix of random things (tied by the ballad genre) put together hastily just for the sake of releasing something. Using an old brand just to make people excited and create some buzz.

Even the cover is totally bland and does not express a thing. Love the lilac tone, that's it. Could either be an ad for sticky lipsticks or creepy lenses.

You know what I would be happy with? A BEST 3. I don't expect anything more than an awesome compilation of all the "best" songs since B&D / Pride with a cover in the lines of the original and the second one. Put PVs on the discs if you want (don't care) and call it a day. I would be really happy to buy it and listen to it.
Resurrecting A BALLADS for this... There is no point. Put out another Spotify playlist.

I'm not mad or extremely disappointed at all because as I said I had no expectation. I'm just bored by so little creativity and commitment.

One more thing : why the font has to be translucent and WHY ON EARTH it's not the same as the original one T_T ?

Last edited by hidekirby; 21st February 2021 at 07:52 PM.
  #20  
Old 21st February 2021, 08:00 PM
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Is it just me, it goes she look like she's annoyed and has a headache?

She looks beautiful though.
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