Music Review: Che’Nelle’s Believe

Release date: 7.4.2012

Label: EMI Music Japan

Purchase: CDJapan

Rating: 4/5

I’ve never paid any attention to this artist before. But I’m so glad I finally did. Her music is awesome.

Taking inspiration from uptempo genres like dance, electro, and dancehall, to midtempo pop, r&b, and soul, “Believe” is one of the best Urban Jpop albums I’ve heard all year.

The heart racing opener Sunshine delivers the intensity and anticipation needed for listeners to go deeper in the album. And while Fall For You tames the pace, the tempo is still high and bouncy for the club. Both tracks will have you dancing up a sweat, as appose to Story that’s more on the r&b midtempo vibe. Now that’s a song that lives up to its title, telling a tale in not only the words but through the blissful melodies.

To be honest I was expecting the album’s title to be some kind of energetic dance number, what I got instead was pure sweetest and raw vocal talent in a magnificent ballad. Believe is a wonderful production depicting Che’Nelle’s honey voice with lovely instruments. That piano melody is like needles sticking my heart.

I’m with You is a catchy midtempo that sounds as if the singer recorded it on a Spring afternoon on her porch. It has that peaceful, indie, smooth, sweet as sugar thing to it that I just can’t describe well enough with words. You’d definitely have to listen to understand and feel what I’m trying to convey here.

Stars is a reggae influenced track recorded completely in English. Again, the singer’s voice is sensual, emotional, unrestrained. She captivates with every note.

As beautiful as those slower paced tracks are, Che’Nelle picks things up exceptionally well, utilizing the trend in today’s pop music. Happening Again is a Eurodance track also performed in English and pulls us back into the fun and exciting side to the artist. You’ll never get comfortable in one tone, though. We’re taken back into the pop elements of the album with Rain and one can only wait to hear what’s coming next. This is my favorite song on the record. I love how the music and harmonies are arranged, and how addictive the track in itself truly is. This is another perfection,  but it is my absolute favorite. Unfortunately, those sentiments are not shared with the next track.

Crystals of Love almost sounds out of place if not completely lost. I am unable to connect with this song no matter how hard I try to listen to it all the way to the end. It’s just not as entertaining as the previous tracks and I can’t seem to appreciate the experimental music it delivers.

I love Ai no Uta. Those lowered backing vocals are sensual and groovy. This is another track boasting Che’Nelle’s amazing voice and I love how she never holds back when it comes to her singing. There’s always something different to listen to in each song and that also makes her quite unpredictable. A very versatile artist I might add.

The Last Boy and You’re My Only Shinin’ Star both are extremely breathtaking soul ballads. The latter is another English recording but in any language this woman nails every note. There’s something very passionate, raw, and just really authentic in how she performs. I can’t get enough of her voice.

To You closes the album off with another ballad. Its not tiring at all. The song’s organized with a lullaby like piano melody that’s combined with her unearthly tones. This is the epitome of music that reaches the soul.

There’s an extended version of Believe to finish things off and that concludes a brilliantly produced record. What can I say? Che’Nelle’s just a magnificent artist and it’s truly a shame that I knew nothing of her music until now. May I suggest that you use the link below to familiarize yourselves with her music as well, and support the artist by purchasing her music. Thank you!

One thought on “Music Review: Che’Nelle’s Believe

  1. She’s beautiful. Is she tanned? I noticed a lot of these Japanese ladies try to accomplish a darker skin tone. I don’t consider it a negative thing if they like our culture enough to emulate it out of fascination.

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