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Appears

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For other uses, see Appearance (disambiguation).
"Appears"
An image of recording artist Ayumi Hamasaki in front of a building window with a black wig covering her breasts. Her skin is digitally altered to make it look darker.
Japanese vinyl (part 1), CD, and worldwide digital cover artwork.
Single by Ayumi Hamasaki
from the album Loveppears
A-side "Immature"
Released November 10, 1999 (1999-11-10)
Format
Recorded 1999
Genre Dance music
Length 5:38
Label
  • Avex Trax
  • Avex USA
  • Avex Entertainment Inc.
  • Drizzly Records
  • Rhythm Republic
Writer(s) Ayumi Hamasaki
Producer(s) Max Matsuura
Ayumi Hamasaki singles chronology
"A"
(1999)
"Appears"
(1999)
"Kanariya"
(1999)
Ayumi Hamasaki German singles chronology
"Naturally"
(2004)
"Appears"
(2005)
"Unite!"
(2005)

"Appears" is a song recorded by Japanese recording artist Ayumi Hamasaki. It was released by Avex Trax on November 10, 1999 as the sixth single from her second studio album Loveppears (1999), which was released on the same day. Alongside this, it has been released in several other territories with different release dates under her Western alias Ayu. It also served as Hamasaki's first limited edition single, limiting physical sales to 300,000 copies. The track was written by Hamasaki herself, while production was handled by long-time collaborator Max Matsuura. Musically, "Appears" is an dance song written in third person perspective, and is about the third person watching a happy and loving relationship. Upon its release, "Appears" received positive reviews from music critics. Alexey Eremenko, writing for AllMusic, selected the track as the best song from the album and her career. However, an editor from CD Journal criticized the amount of remixes on the CD single.

Commercially, the single was a success in Japan, peaking at number two on the Oricon Singles Chart and TBS' Count Down TV chart. It sold just below its restricted 300,000 units, and was certified Gold by the Recording Industry Association of Japan (RIAJ) for shipments of 200,000 units. An accompanying music video was directed by Wataru Takeishi, which displays Hamasaki walking around New York City and observing people. To promote the single, it appeared on several remix and greatest hits compilation albums conducted by Hamasaki, and has been included on some of her concert tours including part two of her 2000 concert tour and the 2007 Secret Tour.

Background and composition[edit]

"Appears" was written by Hamasaki herself, while production was handled by longtime collaborator Max Matsuura. The song's instrumentation consists of guitar by musician Naoya Akimoto and keyboards by Japanese pop band HΛL. It was then composed together by Kazuhito Kikuchi and mixed by HΛL.[1] An alternative version of "Appears" was released as the single-edit, which was primarily composed and mixed by Kikuchi, but this edit did not appear on the final cut of Hamasaki's second studio album Loveppears (1999).[1] Musically, "Appears" is a dance song, a genre that is heavily influenced throughout the parent album.[2][3]

In a special commentary for Hamasaki's compilation album A Ballads (2003), where a third version of the track is included, she stated that the lyrical content was written in third person perspective, a trait that is shared with the rest of the album's tracks.[4] She stated that the song is about the third person watching a happy and loving relationship: "It's about lovers who appear to be happy and are living each day in their usual way. But there is a sense that a third person is watching from a distance."[4] The song's title is loosely based on the album's title Loveppears, which was originally planned to be called "Lovers Appear".[4]

Release[edit]

"Appears" was released by Avex Trax on November 10, 1999 as the sixth single from the album, which was also released on the same day.[5][1] The CD single, which was distributed in Japan and Hong Kong, included 12 tracks: six remixes of "Appears", two remixes of her previous single "Whatever", and two remixes of her previous promotional single "Immature". The last two tracks are instrumentals of the HΛL remix and Keisuke Kikuchi remix of "Appears" and "Immature" (titled '99 Greetings Mix and JT Original CM Mix).[5][6] Two separate 12" vinyls were distributed by Japanese label Rhythm Republic, featuring remixes of both "Appears" and "Whatever".[7][8] It was Hamasaki's first single to be distributed in North America, which was remixed by American DJ Junior Vasquez and released on May 27, 2001.[9] It was furthered distributed by Drizzly Records throughout Europe in 2005–06 under Hamasaki's Western alias Ayu; it was released on 12" vinyl and CD single formats.[10][11] The artwork for digital and Japanese formats featured a darkened skin version of Hamasaki's portrait on Loveppears; like both covers, it garnered controversy due to its provocative nature.[12]

Reception[edit]

Upon its release, "Appears" received positive reviews from music critics. AllMusic's Alexey Eremenko, whom contributed to writing Hamasaki's biography on the website, selected the track as some of her best work.[13] A mixed review came from a staff member at CD Journal, who questioned the inclusion of remixes on the CD single. Though the editor commended the club inspired composition, he/she criticized how it took over Hamasaki's vocal performance and felt the sound was slightly "geeky".[14] Commercially, the single was a success in Japan. It debuted at number two on the Oricon Singles Chart, selling 273,760 units in its first week of sales. It lasted three weeks on the top 200, becoming one of Hamasaki's lowest spanning singles in that chart.[15] It debuted at number two on the Count Down TV chart hosted by Tokyo Broadcasting System (TBS), stalled from the top spot by Utada Hikaru's "Addicted to You".[16] It lasted four weeks in the top 100.[17] Part one of the "Appears"/"Whatever" 12" vinyl reached number 96 on the same chart, entering on chart date February 5, 2000.[18]

By the end of 1999, it had sold over 282,000 units in Japan, making it the 81st highest selling single of that year in that country; it was also Hamasaki's fifth addition on the Oricon Yearly Chart, just behind her singles "To Be", "Love (Destiny)", "Boys & Girls", and her extended play A (1999).[19] That same year, it ranked at number 84 on TBS' Annual Chart.[20] In January 2000, the single was certified Gold by the Recording Industry Association of Japan (RIAJ) for shipments of 200,000 units.[21] As of July 2016, "Appears" has sold 290,550 units in Japan, and is her 28th highest selling single based on Oricon Style's data base.[22]

Music video and promotion[edit]

An accompanying music video was directed by Wataru Takeishi.[23] The video opens with shots of New York City, and then has Hamasaki on a rooftop. Hamasaki is then singing the track with several different camera angles circulating her and the city. During the first verse, it has her in an apartment, sitting on a couch with a butterfly hair clip; this scene is used throughout the entire video. It then has three shots of her in different clothes; one with a brown leather jacket, brown wig and cowboy hat, the second with a red dress on, and the third with a black jacket and crop hair style.[23] The shot with her in the brown leather jacket, brown wig and cowboy hat then shows her on a rooftop singing the song. The final pre-chorus and chorus has her driving through New York City, and has her in a pink dress watching the snow fall; it ends with her in the red dress, holding her hands out for the snow to fall.[23] The music video was included on several DVD compilations released by Hamasaki: A Clips (2000),[24] A Complete Box Set (2004),[25] the digital release of A Clips Complete (2014),[26] and the DVD and Blu-Ray re-release edition of her 2001 compilation album A Best (2016).[27]

"Appears" has been heavily promoted on compilation albums and live performances. As of July 2016, it has been included on eight of Hamasaki's remix albums, including Super Eurobeat Presents Ayu-ro Mix (2000) and Ayu-mi-x II Version Non-Stop Mega Mix (2001).[28] The single has also been used on greatest hits albums conducted by Hamasaki, including A Best (2001),[29] the HΛL's remix on A Ballads (2003),[30] A Complete: All Singles (2007),[31] and most recently on her 2014 Christmas compilation Winter Ballad Selection.[32] It was specially remixed by Junior Vasquez and added onto Hamasaki's remix extended play, The Other Side Two: Junior Vasquez.[33] The single has been included on three major concert tours hosted by Hamasaki, including part two of her 2000 concert tour,[34] her 2007 Secret Tour,[35] and her 2012 Hotel Love Songs tour in Japan.[36]

Track listing and formats[edit]

Personnel[edit]

Credits adapted from the CD liner notes of Loveppears;[1]

Recording
Credits

Charts[edit]

Certification[edit]

Region Certification Certified units/Sales
Japan (RIAJ)[21] Gold 290,550[40]

*sales figures based on certification alone
^shipments figures based on certification alone

Release history[edit]

Region Date Format Label
Japan[5] November 10, 1999 CD single
Hong Kong[6]
Japan[7] January 28, 2000 12" vinyl Rhythm Republic
"Appears"/"Immature" 12" vinyl[37]
March 22, 2000 12" vinyl
United States[9] May 27, 2001 12" vinyl Avex USA
Germany[10] April 18, 2005 Drizzly Records
Europe[11] CD single
United Kingdom[38] 2006
Japan[39] September 2008[B] Digital download
  • Avex Trax
  • Avex Entertainment Inc.

Notes[edit]

  1. ^ Charted together with Hamasaki's single "Whatever" on vinyl format.[18]
  2. ^ There is currently insufficient evidence to determine what date Hamasaki's digital releases appeared on online retails. The closest source for iTunes Store evidence is at Jame World, whom confirmed Hamasaki's work was released worldwide on iTunes in September 2008.[41]

References[edit]

  1. ^ a b c d Hamasaki, Ayumi (1999). Loveppears (CD Album; Liner notes). Ayumi Hamasaki. Japan: Avex Trax. AVCD-11740. 
  2. ^ AllMusic Staff (April 10, 2001). "Ayumi Hamasaki – Loveppears". AllMusic. Retrieved July 14, 2016. 
  3. ^ Takeuchi Cullen, Lisa (March 25, 2002). "Empress of Pop". Time. p. 3. Archived from the original on April 3, 2002. Retrieved November 28, 2011. 
  4. ^ a b c Hamasaki , Ayumi (interviewee) (March 12, 2003). "Special Website to A Ballads". Ayumi Hamasaki's official website. Retrieved July 16, 2016. 
  5. ^ a b c d Hamasaki, Ayumi (1999). Appears (CD Single; Liner notes). Ayumi Hamasaki. Japan: Avex Trax. AVCD-30064. 
  6. ^ a b c Hamasaki, Ayumi (1999). Appears (CD Single; Liner notes). Ayumi Hamasaki. Hong Kong: Avex Trax. AVTCDS-209. 
  7. ^ a b c Hamasaki, Ayumi (2000). Appears / Whatever (12" Vinyl; Liner notes). Ayumi Hamasaki. Japan: Rhythm Republic. RR12-88149. 
  8. ^ a b Hamasaki, Ayumi (2000). Appears / Whatever (12" Viny;; Liner notes). Ayumi Hamasaki. Japan: Rhythm Republic. RR12-88152. 
  9. ^ a b c Hamasaki, Ayumi (2001). Appears (12" Vinyl; Liner notes). Ayumi Hamasaki. North America: Avex USA. AVA 12. 
  10. ^ a b c Hamasaki, Ayumi (2005). Appears (12" Vinyl; Liner notes). Ayumi Hamasaki. Europe: Drizzly Records. DRIZ3005-1. 
  11. ^ a b c Hamasaki, Ayumi (2005). Appears (CD Single; Liner notes). Ayumi Hamasaki. Europe: Drizzly Records. DRIZ3006-CD. 
  12. ^ Chang, Miharu (February 25, 2003). "Keep Away Unless You've Got a Stuffy Nose!". The New Paper. Singapore Press Holdings. 
  13. ^ Eremenko, Alexey (2016). "Ayumi Hamasaki – Songs". AllMusic. Retrieved July 14, 2016. 
  14. ^ CD Journal Staff (November 10, 1999). "Appears – Ayumi Hamasaki". CD Journal (in Japanese). Retrieved July 16, 2016. 
  15. ^ a b "Appears – Ayumi Hamasaki". Oricon Style (in Japanese). November 10, 1999. Archived from the original on September 24, 2012. Retrieved July 16, 2016. 
  16. ^ a b "CDTV PowerWeb! Ranking Singles Chart". Count Down TV; published through Tokyo Broadcasting System (TBS) (in Japanese). November 20, 1999. Archived from the original on June 16, 2006. Retrieved July 16, 2016. 
  17. ^ "CDTV PowerWeb! Ayumi Hamasaki – Appears". Count Down TV; published through Tokyo Broadcasting System (TBS) (in Japanese). November 20, 1999. Archived from the original on June 28, 2006. Retrieved July 16, 2016. 
  18. ^ a b c "CDTV PowerWeb! Ayumi Hamasaki – Appears / Whatever". Count Down TV; published through Tokyo Broadcasting System (TBS) (in Japanese). February 5, 2000. Archived from the original on September 18, 2006. Retrieved July 16, 2016. 
  19. ^ a b "Oricon Yearly Chart – Singles, Albums, and DVD Releases of 1999". Music TV Program Japan (in Japanese). December 1999. Retrieved July 16, 2016. 
  20. ^ a b "CDTV PowerWeb! 1999 Annual Singles Chart". Count Down TV; published through Tokyo Broadcasting System (TBS) (in Japanese). 1999. Archived from the original on October 9, 2006. Retrieved July 16, 2016. 
  21. ^ a b "GOLD ALBUM 他認定作品 1999年11月度" [Gold Albums, and other certified works. November 1999 Edition] (PDF). The Record (Bulletin) (in Japanese). Chūō, Tokyo: Recording Industry Association of Japan. 482: 9. January 10, 2000. Archived from the original (PDF) on January 17, 2014. Retrieved January 17, 2014. 
  22. ^ "Ayumi Hamasaki Single's Ranking". Oricon Style (in Japanese). Retrieved July 16, 2016. 
  23. ^ a b c Takeishi, Wataru (director) (November 10, 2015). "Appears / Ayumi Hamasaki (music video)". Avex Trax; published through YouTube (in Japanese). Retrieved July 16, 2016. 
  24. ^ Hamasaki, Ayumi (2000). A Clips (DVD Videos; Liner notes). Ayumi Hamasaki. Japan: Avex Trax. AVVD-90069. 
  25. ^ Hamasaki, Ayumi (2004). A Complete Box Set (DVD Videos; Liner notes). Ayumi Hamasaki. Japan: Avex Trax. AVBD-91181~3. 
  26. ^ "A Clip Box 1998-2011, Vol. 1 – Album – by Ayumi Hamasaki". iTunes Store (New Zealand). January 1, 2012. Retrieved July 16, 2016. 
  27. ^ Hamasaki, Ayumi (2016). A Best: 15th Anniversary Edition (CD + DVD + Blu-Ray; Liner notes). Ayumi Hamasaki. Japan: Avex Trax. AVZD-93409/B~C. 
  28. ^ The list below are the compilations that "Appears" has been featured in;
    • Hamasaki, Ayumi (2000). Super Eurobeat Presents Ayu-ro Mix (Remix Album; Liner notes). Ayumi Hamasaki. Japan: Avex Trax. AVTCD-95326. 
    • Hamasaki, Ayumi (2000). Ayu-mi-x II Version US+EU (Remix Album; Liner notes). Ayumi Hamasaki. Japan: Avex Trax. AVCD-11797. 
    • Hamasaki, Ayumi (2000). Ayu-mi-x II Version JPN (Remix Album; Liner notes). Ayumi Hamasaki. Japan: Avex Trax. AVCD-11798. 
    • Hamasaki, Ayumi (2000). Ayu-mi-x II Version Acoustic Orchestra (Remix Album; Liner notes). Ayumi Hamasaki. Japan: Avex Trax. AVCD-11799. 
    • Hamasaki, Ayumi (2000). Ayu-mi-x II Version Non-Stop Mega Mix (Remix Album; Liner notes). Ayumi Hamasaki. Japan: Avex Trax. AVCD-11800~1. 
    • Hamasaki, Ayumi (2001). Ayu Trance (Remix Album; Liner notes). Ayumi Hamasaki. Japan: Avex Trax. AVCD-17028. 
    • Hamasaki, Ayumi (2001). Super Eurobeat Presents Ayu-ro Mix 2 (Remix Album; Liner notes). Ayumi Hamasaki. Japan: Avex Trax. AVCD-17027. 
    • Hamasaki, Ayumi (2003). RMX Works From Super Eurobeat Presents Ayu-ro Mix 3 (Remix Album; Liner notes). Ayumi Hamasaki. Japan: Avex Trax. AVCD-17381. 
  29. ^ Hamasaki, Ayumi (2001). A Best (Compilation Album; Liner notes). Ayumi Hamasaki. Japan: Avex Trax. AVCD-11950. 
  30. ^ Hamasaki, Ayumi (2003). A Ballads (Compilation Album; Liner notes). Ayumi Hamasaki. Japan: Avex Trax. AVCD-17278. 
  31. ^ Hamasaki, Ayumi (2007). A Ballads (3xCD Compilation Album; Liner notes). Ayumi Hamasaki. Japan: Avex Trax. AVCD-23676~8. 
  32. ^ "Winter Ballad Selection – Album – by Ayumi Hamasaki". iTunes Store (Japan). November 26, 2014. Retrieved July 16, 2016. 
  33. ^ Hamasaki, Ayumi (2001). The Other Side Two: Junior Vasquez (Remix EP; Liner notes). Ayumi Hamasaki. Japan: Rhythm Republic. RRCD-85233. 
  34. ^ Hamasaki, Ayumi (2000). Ayumi Hamasaki Concert Tour 2000 Vol. 2 (Live DVD; Liner notes). Ayumi Hamasaki. Japan: Avex Trax. AVBD-91021. 
  35. ^ Hamasaki, Ayumi (2007). Tour of Secret (Live DVD; Liner notes). Ayumi Hamasaki. Japan: Avex Trax. AVBD-91536~7. 
  36. ^ Hamasaki, Ayumi (2012). Hotel Love Songs Tour (Live DVD; Liner notes). Ayumi Hamasaki. Japan: Avex Trax. AVBD-92029~30. 
  37. ^ a b Hamasaki, Ayumi (2000). Appears / Immature (12" Vinyl; Liner notes). Ayumi. Japan: Avex Trax. NA. 
  38. ^ a b Hamasaki, Ayumi (206). Appears (CD Single; Liner notes). Ayu. United Kingdom: Drizzly Records. DRIZ3006CD006. 
  39. ^ a b "Appears – Single – by Ayumi Hamasaki". iTunes Store (Japan). November 10, 1999. Retrieved July 14, 2016. 
  40. ^ "オリコンランキング情報サービス「you大樹」" [Oricon Ranking Information Service 'You Big Tree']. Oricon. Retrieved August 26, 2014. (subscription required (help)). 
  41. ^ "Avex Artists Available at US iTunes Store". Jame World. September 5, 2008. Retrieved April 1, 2016. 

External links[edit]