And now for something completely different.
Summer rolls around which means it’s finally time to get riled up over powerpoints again, pending inevitable laziness on your blogger’s behalf. When periods like this roll around I tend to opt for shorter titles first – some of which you’ll have heard of, some of which you’ll be hard pressed to see discussed at all. Throughout this series of posts I’ll briefly explore some of them. None of my usual tl;drs will be found here, they’ll be short cuts in every sense of the term. Much like how my trial impressions used to be. I may also discuss related media I’ve recently taken an interest in, but who knows?
For now, let us dust off ye olde bloge’s cobwebs and embark on an illustrious voyage armed with three titles I read recently: Otherwise’s Sense Off ~A Sacred Story in the Wind~ (2000), Leaf’s Shizuku (1996), and TopCat’s Hateshinaku Aoi, Kono Sora no Shita de… (2000).
Unless stated otherwise there will be no spoilers.
An inadequate guitarist, a gifted vocalist, and a prodigious pianist: three melodies once distant eventually intertwined and thus formed something harmonious. But as it swelled to a crescendo, it became too much. Something had to give, and none of their own melodies reached… Neither did their love.
Three years later, the harmony is but a distant dream. With Kazusa having long since left for Vienna, both Haruki and Setsuna are left to pick up the pieces of their fractured relationships. Held captive by their destructive memories and overtaken by a mutual guilt, it’s all Haruki can do to avoid Setsuna as he throws himself into work despite her evident hopefulness. As they’re being strangled by the string of fate it’s a wonder if he can continue avoiding her. Three distractions come in the form of women Haruki finds himself coming into contact with. It’s all well and good for him to forget about everything that happened, right? Time to wipe the slate clean…
…Is what would happen if this were any other title. It’s not so easy for Haruki and Setsuna to move on as they’d like to hope, for the shadows of their past persistently linger, blanketing everything they do.
A new winter is on the horizon. A season filled with much pain for them, for it’s a season without –
“Hey, Kitahara…. When I see the snow, I remember.
When we all played ‘White Album’ together.
Things like us all messing about, amidst snow falling deep within the mountains.
Things like touching you, amidst snow falling in the city.
When I look up towards the sky and see snow falling, I remember it all.”
Feeling an all consuming sense of loss and regret, a single man looks up towards the winter sky. As the snow continues to fall, he hopes that it will cover the harsh reality lying before his eyes. That it will obscure the truth from him along with everything else. But, the man himself recognizes that it would be a fruitless endeavour for snow must eventually melt and with it, expose whatever filth it has covered.
We make the transition from such a bleak setting to a school’s light music club, dealing with the fallout from their band’s disintegration. Going from six members to two in a matter of minutes is no mean feat, and the blame can be placed entirely on their bewitching vocalist set on stardom. With just a month left until their school’s festival and the only members left being guitar players, our hero Haruki and his (sort of) friend Takeya are in quite the pinch.
Strumming alone in the music room after school, sometimes a piano will accompany Haruki from another. And sometimes, so will a voice drifting from the roof. Three disconnected melodies eventually come together, creating something harmonious.