After the Kagamine twins success, Bplats (under YAMAHA) seems to have taken a page out of their book and released an all-new, yellow-themed pair of Vocaloid twins of their very own, Anon and Kanon. Going with the popular sibling-complex dynamic, they’ve stirred interest since their release in March. I have been waiting for a decent English subbed video of their debut original song, Heart Chrome to be out on Youtube to share, and let’s see if it shows off the two new additions!
First, introducing the two new girls. From their official site information, they are listed as Anon (left) and Kanon (right). Although they are identical twins in their 12th year of high school, they can be distinguished by their obviously different set of hairstyles and expressions that hint at their personalities. Anon’s slightly worried expression points her out to be the younger of the two, who as it turns out is sort of an airhead and can only focus when dancing. Kanon with her more confident, coquettish smile, is a “class representative type” in contrast. She seems worried about Anon’s future, planting the sister complex story right there between the two.
Both girls sport orange-ish blonde hair (called “apricot” in reference to Anon’s kanji in her name), with Kanon on the right with a long side ponytail that fades into a purple gradient. The same purple is added onto their headsets, sleeveless jacket edges and buttons. Although they keep with the school uniform theme of most Vocaloids, they also have opposite asymmetrical cuts to their skirts and contrasting black/white outfits to supplement their largely orange-yellow theme. Anon has thigh-highs and short boots, whereas Kanon has knee-length of both.
There are a lot of little details in the design that make them stand out, such as the gradient of binary code on the underside of their jacket lapels, the play (▶) and stop button (■) on their shoes. Where they hold hands, you can see the fingerless half-gloves. Overall, character concept and design appeal both visually and content-wise for fan-made story.
In congruence with their appearances, their voices are meant to blend well but have a different feel to them. It’s hard to tell in Heart Chrome, the debut demo song by Hachioji-P, but let’s take a look:
Described by Hachioji-P as “an emo-ish song”, Heart Chrome can be read as a typical love song of longing to a pop-ish, EDM beat. Although the lyrics are not very special, I do like to think that the “secret” aspect of the love is a nod to all the siscon shippers. The autotune makes it exciting, but does hide the individual qualities of the two girls. Right away, you can tell they are both deeper singers and lend a cooler, mature tone (but still sound 18).
This would be the first PV I review with an actual official choreographed dance, thanks to the use of the MikuMikuDance models. Although Hachioji-P mentioned trying to get the motion to show the “anime textures”, I think the models themselves, which are available by download on Anon and Kanon’s official site, are pretty good quality already. They handle the moves with rather realistic physics and a lot of strength and bend in their bodies. Heart Chrome’s dance not only complements the song’s energy with its modern pop idol image, it was created with the duet aspect in mind. Most of the positioning centers on the two of them dancing together, including the heart motions. Overall, the simplicity yet dynamics of the PV makes a great debut impression.
To really judge the quality of their voicebanks, I compared solo versions of other covers (like Anon’s and Kanon’s Tori no Uta). It’s tricky due to the difference in rendering, but the two do have distinct enough tones. For Vocaloid3 engines, they have pretty even sounds and handle a reasonably expected range (both of their World is Mine covers are much easier on the ears than Miku’s). One problem I noticed that wasn’t limited to just Heart Chrome was how as deeper singers, they tend to get a little buried in heavy instrumental.
As befitting her attitude, Kanon is the stronger, clearer singer. She’s actually my favorite of the two in terms of voices, because she almost resembles one of the POWER appends. Kanon would suit the vividly loud pop or rock songs. Anon has a smoother but softer voice, good for darker/somber moods and ballads, but not exclusively. Compared to the two, Megurine Luka is more whispery, while Meiko is more mature.
Heart Chrome alone is a catchy interest-generator, but is the song – and Anon and Kanon’s concepts – enough to enter the Vocaloid3 competition already full of new, flashy, and quality choices? Anon and Kanon do have a few strong points working out for them: sister story (a two-for-one-box deal), attractively deeper female tones, and a dance that everyone on NicoNico will love to cover. Plus, Heart Chrome is a great song to jam to with enough of a soulful element that makes it less mindless to replay.
-Good song and dance.
-Shows off MMD models, which are free to download.
-New voice types and attractive designs.
-Song itself doesn’t show off individual voices.
-Voices a little muffled with heavy instruemntal