01 - Rocks
02 - Portal
03 - Rocks (off vocal)
04 - Portal (off vocal)
If you've read my other reviews of JAM Project's singles, you can easily figure out that I love this group. I originally discovered this J-Rock group from the opening to the anime, Soul Taker. Their melodies aren't the greatest, but it's their amazing vocalists that strike me. Their latest single is "Rocks," which is the opening theme for Super Robot Taisen: Original Generations for the PS2. The single includes the ending theme "Portal" along with "Rocks," as well as instrumental versions of both songs.
"Rocks" starts off slow, but builds up nicely when the main melody kicks in 55 seconds into the song. From there, it is the usual, hardcore JAM project style like all of their other opening themes. The upbeat melody isn't anything special, but once again, the vocals are what got me into the song. The male vocalist is powerful. The timing when the female vocalist comes in is excellent, and it adds some dynamics to the song. While the song is solid, it's not as good as some of their older works like "GONG" and "VICTORY." Regardless, this is a fine song that captures the hot-blooded spirit of the Super Robot Taisen series.
I liked "Portal," and it had no real faults, but I felt the song lacked a strong punch. The melody is fine, though a bit lacking, and all the vocalists did a fine job. It remained consistently solid to the end, but this constancy led to boredom. I felt there were moments where the song could have "kicked it up a notch," like they've done in "Brother in Faith," but they never seized the opportunity. Towards the end, the song does get a little more upbeat, and that's when it really got better, but it does not last long. I do like the song for what it is, but felt it could've became something greater.
This does not dethrone "VICTORY" and "GONG" as my favorite JAM Project singles, but it is up there. "Rocks" and "Portal" are great songs, though they could've escalated to something even greater. Like most of their other works, I recommend this single.
Reviewed by: Dennis Rubinshteyn