Arashi in Popolo, May 2008
Product Code: JACA-5102/5104
Release Date: 2008.06.25
Highest Ranking: #1
Limited Edition: DVD
Arashi member Matsumoto Jun played the iconic role of Domyouji Tsukasa in both seasons of the popular drama Hana Yori Dango. Arashi contributed opening themes to both seasons, “Wish” and “Love so sweet,” and both songs became successful, with “Love so Sweet” even, becoming the fourth best selling single of 2007.
In 2008, Matsumoto reprised his role for the third and final installment of the Hana Yori Dango franchise in a movie, Hana Yori Dango Final. Arashi had been experiencing a successful year with both a greatly successful single and album. They released “One Love,” their second single of 2008, as the theme to the movie.
1. One Love
“One Love” starts off on, of all things, something that sounds like a synthesized bagpipe paired with sole snare drum. It’s an odd start, although other synthesized and orchestral sounds join in soon after. A bagpipe refrain repeats throughout though, and though it becomes a part of the song it brought a negative first impression. Arashi starts their vocals, and the tune isn’t something too spectacular.
But soon the song reaches the chorus, and the song becomes spectacular. Arashi are not the best vocalists – much of the solo parts between the choruses sound nasal or rough – but together, they are able to convey the song with poignancy. With lyrics like
Even if it were a hundred years past, I swear my love
You are my everything
I believe, I just believe
In the person with whom I carve out a common time
To the friends that have supported us no matter when
And laughed and cried with us
I put just one thing into my heart
The words I send are “thank you”
“One Love” is much more of a love song than its predecessors “Wish” and “Love so sweet”; the lyrics, the composition, the band’s styling, and especially the graphics all suggest that it is a marriage-based song – if doves, pillars, vines, white suits and arches and a big CGed white cake all put together in pastel don’t equate that, I don’t know what would. The video was completely CG – the video isn’t blurry, the Arashi members were simply done in a watercolor effect. There isn’t much happening in the video as much as far a storyline or a dance, but the colors and effects make it a beautiful pairing to the song.
2. How to Fly
After their love ballad, “How to Fly” is a faster paced song that bases its instrumentals off Spanish guitar. It sounds significantly more melancholic than the preceding ballad. There is a very nice guitar solo in the middle of the song. The tune is catchy isn’t nearly as memorable as “One Love,” but “How to Fly” has an infective beat and interesting instrumentation.
3. FINAL Remix feat. WISH, Love so sweet & One Love
Despite its name, the “FINAL Remix” is not as much of a remix as a rearranged medley of the three songs used in Hana Yori Dango. The remix starts off on a mellow orchestral excerpt until it delves into the songs. First is “Wish” that has been given a softer beat and more orchestral touches. It then transitions using the sound of church bells into “Love so sweet” that is echoed a little and emphasizes the synth parts of the instrumentals more paired with a less prominent beat. It then fades into “One Love,” that has been instrumentally paired with more majestic orchestral strains. Near the end, there are some jazzy piano and trumpet parts added on.
Some touches on the Final Remix were nice, like the addition of more orchestra and the spiced up “One Love” portion. However, other parts were not special – “Wish” didn’t sound that different from the original, and neither did most of “Love so sweet.” Labeling it as a “FINAL Remix” is a bit deceiving as it’s more of a Final Medley, but the three songs are mixed together beautifully and do sound good together.
Continuing on the tradition from “Wish” and “Love so sweet,” “One Love” is also a fantastic song to be part of the Hana Yori Dango granchise. Something about “One Love” just feels right and tugs at your heart. Although the b-sides are not strong, the Final Remix does prompt the limited edition of the single as a must-have for fans of the franchise. “One Love” is an excellent song, and by itself makes this single worthwhile.
- One Love
- FINAL Remix feat. Wish, Love so sweet & One Love *
- How to Fly **
- One Love (Original Karaoke) **
* Only available on limited edition
** Only available on regular edition
- One Love PV