13. Femme Fatale (1988.08.03)

01. Reversion (Desire)

We're off to a pretty good start. Reversion is a good sign of things to come. Some rock slickness mixed in with some heavy synths. There is plenty of that going forward, but to some wildly varying degrees.

02. Heartbreak

Case in point, the synth tone selected for this song is a bit much. I wouldn't say it's bad enough to hurt your teeth, but it's actually quite the distraction to an otherwise pretty decent song. You'd never really know given that it has the single most generic title of any Nakamori song.

03. Dakishimete ite (Love Is My Favorite Lesson)

Smoooooth. I like this one. Heavy on the bass and it kinda slips into high gear when it has to.

04. Femme Fatale

The titular track...and it's pretty good despite featuring another misplaced synth tone. It's definitely not the choice I would have made.

05. I Know kodoku no sei

Once you get past the frantic piano opening, this song is kinda messy. The vocals are too loud and the bass is too loud and mechanical sounding. It's not bad, but just kinda misses.

06. La Liberté

More of that shrill synth. I mean, it was popular at the time...but I kinda wish it weren't so prominent. That said, I actually like this song. The beat has some legs to it and it has a cool breakdown a little over half way through.

07. So Mad

The stand out song from the album. While it was never a single, it was used to promote the album on television. It's easy to see why. Not only is it catchy, it starts off with a frickin' whip sound effect. Even more promising is that the man behind it is Asato Sekine of EUROX. He worked pretty closely with Nakamori in 1988. A great upbeat track that has some of that EUROX flavor goodness sprinkled in.

The only issue that this song has is that the audio peaks about halfway through. What the hell?

08. Paradise Lost (Love Is In Fashion)

Back to reality. This song isn't the best, but it's not bad either. It's just...not very organic. Not to mention, the "Love, Love, Love, Love" is just...ehhh. This one has it's merits, but it's also kinda messy.

09. Move Me (Strictly Confidential)

Great singing wrapped around an otherwise kinda drab song. That said, I can see a universe where it could have made it as a single. It's solid enough.

10. Jive

The shrill synths are back for one last round. Honestly, this is a pretty good song. As it's the final track, it follows the tradition of ending big. I can't say I listen to this album on the regular, but this is one of the ones I tend to hit at random along with So Mad and Reversion.

OVERALL: It was never going to live up to Stock to me. I have to be totally honest about Stock...while I gushed about it in my review of it, it was a slow burn to the top. Femme Fatale grew on me as well...but not so much in the same respect. I've always liked Stock, it just took a bit longer for me to truly appreciate it. I didn't like Femme Fatale at all when I first heard it. It's a bit of a directionless mess at first listen. I dig it now, though. Nakamori doesn't seem entirely invested in it outside of a few key songs, but does a totally passable job.

The funny thing is...this album did hit number one on the Oricon chart whereas Stock only reached two. Before you start thinking I have crappy tastes, Stock was ranked the nineteenth best album of the year while Femme Fatale topped out at thirtieth. I guess it just had a release better week.

Worth a spin, but I don't anticipate that this will be a favorite for anyone--especially a new listener.




  1. Femme Fatale A.K.A the movie of the same title

    1. It's a fairly common term. I can't say I would ever apply to Nakamori, though. The title probably would have fit the Stock album better since the song Firestarter literally has the line "Gonna take your heart tonight". Hahaa.

    2. That term hasn't spawned a good movie not even once