Jul 312012

Today on July 31st, just one month before Miku’s 5th anniversary, we’ve been treated to another song that’s been created using a beta version of Miku’s English voice bank. Because this is still the beta version, this does not reflect any changes that would be present in the finished product.

The song is titled “NICE AGE”, and comes from HMO a.k.a PAw Lab. The music was done by Yukihiro Takahashi / Ryuichi Sakamoto, and the video was done by y0c1e. There’s far too many other credits to list here, so be sure to read the video’s description here.

The song itself is honestly not too bad. I see many people complaining about the accent, but this is something that had been confirmed by Crypton as a feature well over a year ago at Anime Expo 2011. It’s an English voice bank coming from a Japanese company using a Japanese voice actor, so there will be some accent to the voice. I personally think it adds to her character.

My only real complaint is that the song could have been mastered better. The music suffers from some heavy crackling, static, and loss. This makes it hard to enjoy, and also makes it hard to hear Miku at all in some areas of the track.  Have a listen for yourself, and let me know what you think. Be sure to also express your thoughts on the video on youtube.

EDITED 8/10/2012: A newer version has been uploaded with better audio. This one doesn’t drown out the voice as much.


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About jrharbort
A Hatsune Miku fan since December 2007, jrharbort joined MikuFan.com as the Head Writer in October 2011, and enjoys sharing news with other fans around the world. You can follow him on Twitter at @jrharbort!
  • IdkMyName

    The song was ok, I liked it, and I can clearly read BETA so yeah…

  • Faux Pas

    This is definitely a catchy song (although I’m not a big fan of songs that speak of taking the innocence away from our precious Miku). I completely agree that the accent is a must-have. If Miku were to speak perfect English with no accent, it just wouldn’t truly feel like Miku! Having the Japanese accent links the English version to her origins and authenticity, adds to her charm and is, dare I say it, moe?

  • faTWave

    Hehehe, I’ve looked at it, and also commented. I’m zquallleonheart there, ehehe.

    My reactions?? SIMPLY SPECTACULAR!!!

  • aaaaaa

    Yes, also agreed on the accent. If you want to make a Vocaloid speaking unaccented English, then make a new Vocaloid. Miku is Japanese. She should sound Japanese. End of story. If they were to, say, take Miku and give her an American voice bank provider, that’s not Miku.

    Hell even with the same Fujita Saki samples, it’ll take a little while to get used to this. It sounds like Miku, but it also just feels… off. Like it’s not quite the same. I’m not going to worry too much about one song though.

  • Personally, I prefer when Miku sings in Japanese.

  • Pontianak

    The producer said in their twitter and blog (as per a random YouTube commenter),

    “I produced the song as it would be heard like Japanese. If I didn’t change the sounds of English-Miku, the feeling of the song would be quite different from the original song. So, for example, I changed about 80% of ‘r’ to ‘l’ or ‘v’. I know many native English users are anxious about English-Miku’s pronunciation, but I cannot explain why her pronunciation is bad bacause my English is very poor. I hope anyone inform them of this point.”

    With that said, you can tell her English is MUCH improved over the last examples that we have heard, even with the Engrish conversion and the music drowning out her voice, so big kudo’s to the team making English Miku possible! They are doing a great job and totally deserve a round of beers. 🙂

  • Yeah, I’d heard that the song wasn’t done by a native English speaker, which resulted in an even heavier accent than what would be normal for the product.

  • Red_Sky

    Only speaking for myself here: The problem with this is not the accent. She is Japanese so there should be an accent and I think very few fans would have a reason to gripe about that. The problem here is that it doesn’t sound like Miku. It sounds like they went out, got a new voice actress, told her to try her best to sound like Miku and she did but didn’t quite nail it. Some have commented that it sounds like Miku, to me it’s very obvious that it doesn’t. What I (we?) want is Miku to sing in English, not a new English Vocaloid with Miku’s name on it. I admit I don’t like the song and that may be influencing my opinion. Having said that, I do wholeheartedly give credit to the people trying to make this happen.