After last summer’s delightful Hello Hello, Snow Man have returned with their newest summer single Orange Kiss (オレンジkiss), which also serves as the theme to leader Iwamoto’s new movie. I haven’t been shy about my admiration for Snow Man’s music. Their personality and charm enhances every song, but the music is no slouch on its own. Orange Kiss follows in the fizzy, upbeat pop tradition of Johnny’s and works its way into your heart the longer you listen to it.
The first time I heard Orange Kiss, it felt like a track more in keeping with groups like King & Prince or Naniwa Danshi. It has that sugary sound, lacking the quirkiness that’s infused in many of Snow Man’s biggest hits. But, the guys sell this sunny romanticism extremely well. It helps that the instrumental bounds forth on swirling strings and effervescent synths, optimistic and buoyant to a fault. Johnny’s music often uses these ornate touches to great effect, and the production gives Orange Kiss a satisfying heft even as its featherlight melodies spin around like candy floss.
Most importantly, the song doesn’t forget to build toward an incredible chorus. The melody ascends, bolstering its sense of jubilation. You won’t find any simplistic catchphrase hooks here. This chorus unfolds like a story, branching into multiple refrains. You get your money’s worth with Johnny’s, and the series of hooks give Snow Man plenty of opportunity to appeal their personality. After all, personality is one of the agency’s most prized assets. Even in a song as well-structured and pop-informed as Orange Kiss, that strength shines through and gives it great longevity.
(the second video includes the full song)