The Koda Kumi Rate PART I: The End. Onto the next part we go

One of the most iconic and significant songs leaves us...

It has achieved whole four 10s!


24 walk
Average: 7,64

Highest score: 10x4 (@Monkey0, @RUNAWAY, @Remorque, @me!)
Lowest score: 4x1 (@Ceir, heathen)
My score: lookie above

A song for the ages! And almost all of the tour endings. walk was produced by Kikuchi Kazuhiro (TAKE BACK, Trust Your Love and a plethora of other tracks for quite a lot of artists) and written by Kumi. A touching heartfelt R'n'B ballad that captured the hearts of fans so much so that we rarely see any other song closing Kumi's concerts. Looking back, the song was a bit of a swan song, because she was unsure whether the label would keep her after the performance of the singles. Certainly the meaning of the songs still holds. Kumi just wants to continue being herself and singing for her own sake, but most importantly for her fans. In the end there is nothing more satisfying for her than making them happy and she sure does with each tour, with each song and each music video. Who knew, that back then she was able to write a song, that would resound through all these years and still continue it's legacy.​

You'll start walking again, you'll start singing again

I know you don't want regrets
Even if the place isn't near by,
You're gazing at it, and
You walk without hesitation, playing a song
As you walk on that one road

You'll keep walking, you'll keep singing
Even if a harsh reality is waiting there,
You'll certainly go there, I'm sure of it
While getting hurt, and
While being sad, while being happy,
There's just one road you should walk
(c) @otenkiame

All of the 10 appointers provided some commentary, so let's get over with the other one first. @Weslicious (7) wasn't fully convinced, "Um, if she hadn't ended most concerts with it, I wouldn’t have heard it as much. Nothing I seek out". Yeah, next thing you'll tell us is that you don't know the first singles, mhmm. Anyway, let's move on to the dythiramb! @Remorque has seen the light "I can certainly see why this is a staple in her live shows... Although it's longer than 5 minutes, this one never seems to drag on (like some of her other songs on the debut do tend to...) and her performance is stellar." Indeed. It's kinda like Ayu's Who..., although it didn't keep the spot for as long. @Monkey0 gave that praise that I love, "Eternal closing songs for every damn show. The fact it's from her debut is incredible." It surely is. We end with @RUNAWAY who shared my sentiment and confessed that walk is, in fact, his number 1 on the debut "this song is still so inspiring to this day, and she sings it beautifully. Favourite album track from affection, by far." Makes you wanna keep going and keep singing, doesn't it?

It was so fitting that Kuu decided to sing this one again for her 10th anniversary. This version was released on
Suki de, Suki de, Suki de single and although it did changed to a more of a power ballad with the new arrangement it was still nice to get an older track with fresher vocals.
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I would tell you that you wouldn't believe what's coming next...

But y'all probably expected it at this point...

It's another tie!


(ddddd, I forgot about this artwork as well)
22 (2 track tie) BOY FRIEND?
Average: 7,68

Highest score: 10x2 (@Eskiath, @me!)
Lowest score: 5x1 (@Sprockrooster)
My score: it's above in the highest ones

So after grow into one lost my 11 it loses my 10. BOY FRIEND? was produced by h-wonder (genius!) and written by Matsuraba Ken and it's probably one of the slickest slices of R'n'B Kumi put her name to. Seriously, how luscious and rich this one sounds in all it's cheery amalgam of beats, clicks and chimes. And that deliciously sublime guitar is simply a cherry on top, not to mention Kumi delivers vocally. Lyrically, Kumi found a new boy toy who she compares to her ex all throughout the song. Neat.​

Your wet hair, the water you drank from the faucet

Your habits
Are different from my ex-boyfriend who stroked my hair
I want to see you
I just need to see you
Our love doesn't need
A yes or no, or the future or past

So many ways you can blow my mind, boy
When the password to me
So many ways I can love you now
Spills from my lips
So many ways you can break my heart
You hold me like a flower
So many ways I can love you now
And log into paradise lost

Our love's like an unrequited love
We search together
There's no words, just that body temperature
The premonition we both feel
Is that we'll exchange a happy ending
With cold lips
(c) @otenkiame

Y'all been all nasty not giving this a comment it deserves. Only our overall top scorer @RUNAWAY loved it enough, "I forgot how good this one actually is. Loving the guitar and the lyrics. It's actually kind of.....sad? Really, really good." So glad you made this rediscovery, and yeah, it's totally sad if you dissect it a bit.​

Unfortunately it's one of those songs I'd die to see live, alas, it's been forever forgotten.
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22 (2 track tie) To be one
Average: 7,68

Highest score: 11x1 (@BoomBoX)
Lowest score: 6x1 (@Remorque)
My score: 8

grow into one has to say it's buh-byes to a second track in a row. To be one was produced my Iehara Masaki and written by Kato Kenn. Everybody needs some disco in their lives sometimes and Kumi delivers us some nice variation of it right here. This one just feels very light and cheerful and all you want to do is just party. I also enjoy how the theme of Kuu wanting to always sing, dance and bring joy to her fans is intertwined here as well:​

To be one

Keep on singing, dancing, and smiling
When your shut off heart
Is relieved by singing
Suddenly you're overflowing with smiles

To be one
Keep on singing, dancing, and smiling
Thinking too much about yourself
When dancing the night away
You can feel like you've been reborn
(c) @otenkiame

The infectious upbeat track with a prolonged ending surely was one of the less hated ones among you. Even grumpy @Sprockrooster (7) who surely yells at clouds or something in this vein found it pleasant, "Asian discopop. So basically every genre is fused right now? This is a lovely mixup." Shows how music is universal no matter the genre. I love it! @RUNAWAY though is still hesitant "kind of a low-key bop, but so irritatingly repetitive at the end." That's the thing though! Let it all in, boo, let it all in and bask in the glorious light of Koddess!

I'm so sorry, @BoomBoX, hun. I was actually really surprised by your choice of an 11, but I totally see how it could capture someone's heart. Better luck in Part II?​

Once again I was pretty sure Kumi sang this one live at least one time, but I can't really find any indication of this. Maybe in one of the medleys? Oh well.
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21 Gentle Words
Average: 7,79

Highest score: 10x2 (@RUNAWAY, @Remorque)
Lowest score: 6x2 (@Ceir, @Sprockrooster)
My score: 8

Big songs start to quit and this time feel my mind loses it's first A-side single. Produced by D.A.I of all people and written by Kumi herself, the track is a sweet love song to that special someone. Featherlight production and gentle coos blend perfectly to reflect the song's melancholic bittersweet feeling. Kumi surely loves this guy, but she knows that he has to leave, to spread his wings in order to find himself, thus she's willing to let him go, although she knows, that their love is strong enough to withstand this change. It's one of those songs lyrical content of which should be appreciated in full:​

I look up at the sky

And sigh a little
Unable to come right out and say "Hello! Hello!"
The days I can’t see you
Are carrying on
Turn back the hands of the clock a little

“To a time when our shadows are one”

Our love, that draws us to each other
In that short, faint time
Your words, so gentle
Make me nervous

Your big dream
Has come between us
You'd think I'd want to spur you on
But you’re getting ready to spread your wings out wide
Away from my side
To chase your dream

“Quietly, like you're being guided”

I love you like that
Your intense look, your smile
The happiness having met you gives me
I’ll hold them all in my heart

Our love, that draws us to each other
In that short, faint time
Your words, so gentle
Become a key joining us
(c) kiwi-musume

Looks like this one wasn't gentle enough for you to bother writing commentary, although it did provoke @Eskiath (9), "I love how relaxing it is, it reminds me of peaceful spring mornings." Can't disagree. Once again the top scorer @RUNAWAY gushed, "YAS. Such a gentle (ha!) feeling song but then it goes somewhere different with the chorus and I love it." Yay to the pun! The guy after my own heart.​

Kumi actually performs this quite a lot.
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19 (2 track tie) hands
Average: 7,82

Highest score: 10x3 (@RUNAWAY, @Weslicious, @Remorque)
Lowest score: 4x1 (@Ceir)
My score: 9

As long as we're culling singles, might as well cull one from secret, which hasn't lost a track in a while. Produced by Oonishi Katsumi, who is probably most known for his work with Do As Infinity, and written by Kumi, the classic ballad is a tale of breaking up, with the lovers' hands being the main point. Kuu's hands are cold and shaking and she wishes they were still holding hands and walking into their bright future, alas it's never going to happen. Sonically the song is pretty standard, although I do appreciate how it leans more towards R'n'B, which frankly adds quite the replay value, as the track doesn't tend to get boring.​

I want to go back once again

To the day we first held hands

We’ve reached the end of the world
Nobody alive
Is that strong, but I want you
To warm me

My hands are so cold they’re numb
I love you so much, but…
“The truth is I want you to keep me here”
That’s what I wanted to say…
My hands won’t reach you
(c) kiwi-musume

This received some nice commentary and some ugh... @Sprockrooster (5) is fucking mad, "That final instrumental is an extra point. I love it when a song has that." Are you saying you were going to give it a 4 like that churl @Ceir? Ugh. @Monkey0 (9) once again dropped a rare comment while he was zooming the branches through the jungles, "At first it sounds like very standard J-Pop ballad but Kuu’s delivery make it believeable and heartfelt" YAAAS, give the Kuueen her deserved recognition for her vocals! @RUNAWAY knows what's up, "I LOVE her ballad singles. This is another fantastic one. I'm pretty sure there's a pussy popping remix of this that I used to jam to on one of her Driving albums but I can't remember which one." I believe you're speaking of The Standard Club PIANO DANCE Remix from DRIVING HIT'S 2.​

Kuu still perfroms this one from time to time.
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