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Friday, March 17, 2006



Kaela Kimura "Circle"

Columbia Records want you to think that Kaela Kimura is different from other idols, which is why they've manufactured her image out of the most adorably kooky component parts -- take the endearingly under-rehearsed dance routines of Tommy February6, quirky costumes stolen from Yuki's wardrobe, and then stick her behind a guitar, like Shena Ringo.

But the music on "Circle" isn't substantially different from any other Japanese idol, albeit with slightly more guitars. "Rirura Riruha" bounces out all McCartney-esque bon viveur, but overall the album is forgettable, and it's telling that for all its rockist pretensions, the one standout is the dance-pop title track.

Kimura is first and foremost a glamour model, which is the reason for her pop career's success -- and probably the reason why in a year or two she'll be yesterday's news.

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