I generally try to avoid listing Hatsune Miku songs one after the other, but Proof of Existence happens to hit a balance of tuning that makes Miku’s softer robotic voice sound peaceful as opposed to out of place. Paired with a subtle, artistic PV, Miku sings with a touch of melancholy. Composer sizimi managed to pull of a best ranking of five in the weekly charts with a modest 45k views so far for Proof of Existence since its release a week ago. Although this isn’t a song that stands out, it really uses the capabilities of Miku’s Vocaloid tuning range to achieve a low and soft but still poignantly ethereal voice. It’s a great listen for a rainy day, or a lazy, quiet afternoon.
The PV is not so much a story as it is various slow panning shots of artwork. The main character is a schoolgirl with long pigtails tied together with two cross-shaped hair ties, one black and one white. Her expressions seem to either be overwhelmed, contemplative, or surrendering to the pressures she sings about. Drawn in a painted coloring style with a muted color scheme, the mood the song goes for is not somber, but rather reflective. Although the girl faces a lot of abstract challenges, she still shows a determined face at the end, assured in her “Proof of Existence.“
For a Vocaloid song that doesn’t have a specific plot, the lyrics are also surprisingly thought out. Only a short section of words are repeated in what could be called the chorus. It’s not a very linear song, so I was a little lost following the translations until I set the lines down by themselves. What the girl/Miku sings about happens to play out a soul-searching personal quest to “find my real self.” In the beginning, there is a metaphor for how at the starting line of a race, she is not ready to pass on her baton. Phrases like “taking two steps ahead, and then taking back three” illustrate the struggle of every student “looking for my foolish uniqueness.”
Even without a lot of specific detail to fill in the PV, there are a lot of images such as the puzzle pieces, the chess piece, and apples that the girl/Miku takes a fork and knife to. Though there doesn’t seem to be a lot of correlation between the symbols, it’s obvious that they play a role in the metaphor of “puzzling” out her life. The girl/Miku’s conclusion is that even going through this process, she doesn’t want to forget her feelings and regrets in realizing that her “proof of existence” doesn’t need to come from anything other than just being here.
What I find really lovely about this song is the compatibility of Miku’s voice with an instrumental that has a lot of electric guitar and a pop-rock beat that still exudes calm. After you listen, the impact you are left with is that the girl/Miku will continue to acquire a brave but silent resolve and self-assurance. Songs like Proof of Existence are examples of why I believe the Vocaloid genres can add to the expressive selection of songs and sit alongside real singers on playlists.
-Well thought-out lyrics.
-Great tuning and instrumental.
-PV and story are not very clear.