Sunday, November 29, 2009

Takagaki Ayahi and Hayami Saori Sing Together Like Angels

My two favorite seiyuu/singers singing together.

Hayami Saori 早見沙織 (left) and Takagaki Ayahi 高垣彩陽 (right) sing the ED to episode 9 of the fitfully amusing ecchi comedy/drama Sora no Otoshimo, an episode that was broadcast Sunday night in Japan.

I have written before about the singing of both Hayamin and Ayahi. I hoped that they would get a chance to sing together, since they both have roles in SoraOto: Hayamin as wish-fulfilling "angeloid" Ikaros, and Ayahi as hilariously vicious student council president Mikako.

The song is the melodic ballad Hatsukoi ("first love"). This is exactly the kind of delicate music that can suit them both. Ayahi is an opera-trained graduate of a music college, Hayamin a natural singer who has studied jazz singing. Ayahi has vocal strength and control, and both musical understanding and emotional grasp. Hayamin has her own sweet musicality and emotion, and a subtle flow that makes hers among the most beautiful voices I know of anywhere.

Have a listen:

Ayahi's is the first voice you hear, doing a couple of lines that are answered by a couple from Hayamin. The two voices match perfectly, and both singers know how to blend. These are two of a small handful of seiyuu/singers who are skillful enough to be compared with actual professional singers -- at least as we hear them on studio recordings.

This may or may not be the kind of music you like, but it is a great showcase for the talents of these two, with a comparatively unobtrusive accompaniment that lets you hear the voices.

The track should be included on the ED collection CD, which will be available starting 29 December from CDJapan, among other places.

Hatsukoi was written and first performed by Murashita Kouzou (stream) in 1983. Then in the year 2000, it was sung by Imai Yuka (stream) as the OP of the final episode of the anime Boys Be....

Hayamin has now sung with two members of Sphere: Tomatsu Haruka (in Basquash, as part of the group "Eclipse") and now Ayahi.

Hayamin and Yoshida Hitomi, singing as "Blue Drops," do a great job on the OP and ED to SoraOto. I would love to see Hayamin team up with Ayahi on a more permanent basis.