The Koda Kumi Rate: Part III, COMPLETE. See you in Q1 2020

Which short track / interlude deserved a full version?

  • Prologue to Dejavu

    Votes: 0 0.0%
  • Interlude to Dejavu

    Votes: 0 0.0%
  • Introduction ~JAPONESQUE~

    Votes: 3 33.3%
  • Interlude ~JAPONESQUE~

    Votes: 0 0.0%
  • Introduction ~Bon Voyage~

    Votes: 1 11.1%
  • Let's show tonight

    Votes: 2 22.2%
  • Interlude ~Bon Voyage~

    Votes: 3 33.3%

  • Total voters
I'm surprised the covers were so loved in general, none of them truly captured me sans Pink Spider / Megumi no Hito I guess.
Physical Thing is amazing, but this is a good spot for it. Ecstasy for last-standing Universe track please!
I may have scored a bit lower than I could have for Physical Thing. I just found it to be sonically similar to Ecstacy, while finding Ecstacy to be the better song.
Pair that with it coming after Ecstacy as a single, then putting them back to back on the tracklist I just couldn't score it as high.
To be honest though, in hindsight, I could have upped it's score a bit. Oh well, still Top 8, and I don't see anyone complaining about the Top 6 so we're all a winner girls!
At This Point:

Bad Ending:


Good Ending:


Best Ending:

Love Me Back
If we were rating performances, I would give be my baby 9/10, sorry.

My average score 5,68 lmaooooooooo. I am ready to get dragged
And sapphires
And you


Love Me Back

Average: 8,82
Highest scorers: 10x5 (@abael, @Ana Raquel, @Osiris, @Remorque, @Music Is Life), 9,75x1 (@Love Deluxe)
Lowest scorers: 6x1 (@Yeziirl), 7x1 (@Coming Century)
My score: 9

5 voters: #8, 9,00 avg.
10 voters: #10, 8,70 avg.
15 voters: #9, 8,75 avg.
18 voters: #7, 8,82 avg.

This elimination leaves "JAPONESQUE" with only one remaining track. Written by Kumi and produced by Matthew Tishler and Liz Rodrigues (the team behind "Black Candy"), the track served as the 52nd single and the last one before the release of "JAPONESQUE". The music video sees Kumi donning the guises of a sexy policewoman and a sexy nurse in order to rescue her mob boss from jail, dddd. For some reason there were two vesions of the video, with the single one being hodge-podgey and the album one being the "full" story. This is so nice. The Bondiana-esque aesthetics of the track works amazingly with the quirky intrumental and Kumi's playful attitude. The best moment for me is how the chorus is repeated in the background, while Kumi croons about diamonds, sapphires and us. Appropriate amount of sexiness and catchy hooks left and right make this one of her best overall tracks, so it's no that surprising that it made into Top10, although I did expect it to go earlier. The lyrics are really cute with Kuu asking the guy to spread his feet to start a check-up as a clear highlight:​

Hey boys!

Stop! Get out of the car
I'll smoke you out, no matter where you are

Hey boys!
I know you heard me
I warned you, "You can't escape from me"

(c) @otenkiame

Somebody hunt me down, please.

Hope everyone learned to ignore @Yeziirl (6) by now, "Ok, It’s not as bad as I thought, after listening to it a couple times, the only part I don’t like is the bridge after the chorus, but overall it’s not bad song." What's wrong with "check, check... bling, bling"?

Hmm, y'all think we should ignore @RUNAWAY (7,5) as well? "I’ve never really clicked with this song as a whole. I live for the video, but the song just really isn’t up to much." Fine, I can see how this might not be that cool for you. Kinda.

@Cutlery (8,5) dissects the patient, "Kuu knows her way around vocal filters and distortion pretty naturally. Her voice breaks at a couple points in a very charming way; with a slightly more stripped down sound, this spy soundtrack song could be an early Lana unreleased" Lana though? I'm not sure. Although she did write "Ghetto Baby" and "Hit and Run", so maybe...

@vague (9) feels the atmosphere, "something about the chorus makes me think of, like, '60s surfer music for some reason??? no idea why. this is great, tho." It's the synths! I can totally Watusi dance to this.

@otenkiame (9) lives for this, of course, "Kuu shows off her hunger for the D with this song. I absolutely love how in charge she sounds too, "Open your legs wide". OMG. I wish I could be like this whenever I went down. Props for the sort of James Bond-ish sound the track has, too. It's also kinda like "Cherry Girl", which isn't a bad thing at all." I mean, kinda, "Cherry Girl" is more rowdy with its guitar and rodeo analogy, while this is more subdued and sultry.

@abael (10) is a shady binch, "They step it up in such a way that I was taken aback slightly. Why didn't this skill and attention go into the other tracks on this album?" Shut that pretty mouth of yours this instance.

I don't remember if all the remaining tracks got 10s from @Music Is Life (10), but we can assume that's exactly the case, "Everything about this is so much. I love the production, it feels kinda bonkers." Bonkers or well-thought-out?

@Remorque (10) would like to be apprehended by Kuu as we all would, "What a fucking bop. The production's fantastic, Kuu's performance is of course fantastic and she looks fucking radiant in the video. And who doesn't love a siren, eh, schwests?" Where's the siren though, hun?​

"Love Me Back" is criminally underperformed live, at least we got some nice TV ones. Kii at her rehashing the police baton dance routine from Rhythm Nation '06 "Cherry Girl" performance.
I hope you got it
that I'm somebody
I need nobody



Average: 8,89
Highest scorers: 10x7 (@Coming Century, @Remorque, @Cutlery, @abael, @Osiris, @Love Deluxe, @Yeziirl), 9,5x1 (@Music Is Life, oh, so not all tracks left got 10s from you, dddd)
Lowest scorers: 5,5x1 (@vague, scandalous!), 6x1 (@mi|kshake)
My score: 9

5 voters: #1, 9,60 avg.
10 voters: #4, 9,00 avg.
15 voters: #6, 8,97 avg.
18 voters: #6, 8,89 avg.


I mentioned in the early voters tea, that I didn't want this to win, but damn. Written and produced by lil'showy (a.k.a. STY, who knows why he had to create another moniker), the track served as Kumi's 49th single and a lead-in one to "Dejavu". As with "Love Me Back", this got two versions of the music video - single and album. Perhaps it was to boost the sales of the DVD version of the single? Who knows. I believe the only major difference in the videos is that the album one got more cinematic sound during the action portions, unlike the single one, which was just the song. Okay, so this is obviously an EDM bop and a half and just that bell-like synth even if reminiscent of Far East Movement and the like alone is to die for, but when people claimed this was the next "TABOO" or "BUT", I wondered what they were smoking. I used to dislike how there was no second verse, although now I came to a conclusion that it shaked up the usual structure of the track and made the middle part pop the fuck off. There is literally no time to relax with this one. Also, that iconic intro. She really is the most powerful girl on the planet. Let's be honest, not everyone could pull off being that confident and putting it in a song. Actually, all these years I thought this was a co-write with Kumi, but no, officially lil'showy is stated as the sole writer for the song. What an amazing guy to capture Kumi's essence in a song so nicely:​

Reducing risks is merely an excuse

to lower the hurdles, yeah
I haven't changed since those days, so if you remember,
you'll understand, cause I'mma Pop Diva

(c) @otenkiame

Well, I'm definitely a lesser diva.

Yeah, I would need more than that @vague (5,5), yes, thank you, "yeah, this ain't the tea for me ramona_sawrry dot jif" No, really, what is dis, hunny?

@Eskiath (8) just wants to know, "Yaaaaaaas queen. I always wonder what her Japanese audience think about the opening lines." We might never know.

@lalaclairi_ (9) agrees, "The intro is iconic." Quite.

@Weslicious (9) isn't one for nicely laidout tracks, "A noisy, messy racket of a song. I love it." The grittiness of it all.

Ooh, @otenkiame (9) made me realize something with his commentary, "Here comes Kuu being all kinds of confident with that in-charge attitude. This electropop number is all about Kuu feeling herself and letting the others know what she's about. It's super hot, even if she's shouting more than singing the hooks. That doesn't matter much, because this is one hell of a catchy tune with lots to like." The shouting! That's what can be off-putting. Guess they tried to make the chorus as powerful as they could and they opted for... this. Not her inspiring herself to repeat the ordeal for the entirety of "WALK OF MY LIFE", but lets leave it for Part IV.

The intro hooked up @Music Is Life (9,5) as well, "The confidence she expresses in that intro and throughout the song! Love it!"

@abael (10) thought "Dejavu" would be worse than "UNIVERSE", "Well, any fears KK wouldn't be able to replicate past greatness were put to bed a few seconds after the prologue. Night and day with Universe."

At least something with a full mark from @Yeziirl (10), right? "catchy, slutty, sexy, all-time favorite, has iconic Engrish, Kumi’s essential! (potential 11/10)" Don't see where it's slutty, but okay.

@Cutlery (10) was this close to giving this his precious 11, "The sassy opening is to melt for, a stan's dream come true. This picks things up from were Trick left them, amps it up tp the max with steroids, and in turn gives us a mega BANGER with shouting for days. What an opener, and close close contender for my 11"​

Looks like "POP DIVA" continues to be one that fans love, since it's still performed from time to time. I personally loved the TV performances that had Kumi in those gorgeous dresses. Although the "Dejavu Tour" one was a great opener for the concert.
@evilsin Love Me Back is bonkers in a well thought-out way.
Also, yassssssss my 11 made top 5!
I think the other 4 are 10s too. But I'm not sure.
EDIT: Oop. Nevermind. Two 9s and a 9.5. But I love all 5 songs so any way this goes I'm happy. I'd be ecstatic of the top two were my 10 and 11 though.
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A shame Love Me Back & Pop Diva didn't make the top 5 but they did well!

Kuu was really at her best during the Love Me Back era: everything was on point: the looks, the dancing, the vocals... The song reminds me of Toxic for some reason.

As for Pop Diva, it's another great single and one of the very few highlights on Déjà Vu. That album was a disapointment overall.



Staff member
Yas a perfect top 5!! Pop Diva has never done ANYTHING for me so I’m glad it’s been shut out of winning! Never in my wildest dreams would I have predicted UNIVERSE in the top 5 though. I’m so pleasantly surprised. That’s an amazing song right there.