arasoi no machi (A City in Strife)

  • Lyrics & Music: Kazuya Yoshii
  • Arrangement: The Yellow Monkey

Original Lyrics

そして僕は一人になった そして僕は途方にくれる
そして今は少し平和さ 君の銀の指輪を握りしめて
朝焼けの空の下 汽車に乗る

初めて君と出会ったのは 寒い冬の繁華街


息をひそめ急ぐのさ Ah………
戒厳令がラジオで流れてる Ah………



外は青い海 僕のこの恋も
僕は今汽車に乗り etc.
僕はただ汽車に乗り etc.
etc. etc. etc……………
etc. etc. etc……………

Romanized Lyrics

soshite boku wa hitori ni natta soshite boku wa tohou ni kureru
soshite ima wa sukoshi heiwa sa kimi no gin no yubiwa wo nigirishimete
asayake no sora no shita kisha ni noru

hajimete kimi to deatta no wa samui fuyu no hankagai
sukoshi karusou ni mieta kara
myou ni majime na kuchou de koe kaketa
kimi wa sore wo minuiteta
warai nagara……
jikan ga yurusu kagiri kimi ni ai ni yukou
dakedo jidai wa sore wo yurushite wa kurenai

soto wa hi no umi boku no kono koi mo
onaji you ni moeteita

akachaketa renga no kabe yakekoge de aruki zurai michi
kimi no kata to fuan wo daite
yogoreta haiiro no coat wo kite
iki wo hisome isogu no sa Ah……
itsumo no kakurega de kuchizuke wo tsuzukeyou
kaigenrei ga radio de nagareteru Ah……

kimi wa koe wo koroshi kanjiteta
iya na yokan mo kanjiteta
soto wa hi no umi boku no kono koi mo
onaji you ni moeteita

arasoi no machi de kimi to koi ni ochita
tada hita sura te wo nigirishime
sore wa mabuta no naka sore wa mune no oku ni
ima mo tojikometa mama
sono mama sa……

ima wa shizuka na machi ni nemutta
kimi no yubiwa wo nigirishimeta
soto wa aoi umi boku no kono koi mo
kibou ni michite ita
boku wa ima kisha ni nori etc.
boku wa tada kishi ni nori etc.
etc. etc. etc…….
etc. etc. etc…….

Translated Lyrics

And now I’m alone, and now I’m at a loss
And now I feel a bit of peace, clutching your silver ring
I’m boarding a train beneath the morning glow

I first met you in a shopping center during a cold winter
You seemed like you might be approachable
So I said something to you with a weirdly serious expression
And you saw right through me
As you smiled……
I’ll come see you as much as time will allow me
But the problem is that it won’t

It was a sea of fire outside, and my love
Was burning in the same way

It’s hard to walk on the scorched reddish-brown brick road
Holding onto your shoulder and my own anxiety
Wearing a dirty grey coat
I hurry on breathlessly, ah……
Let’s keep kissing each other in our usual hiding spot
Martial law is being broadcast on the radio, ah……

You were quietly feeling it
A very unpleasant feeling
It was a sea of fire outside, and my love
Was burning in the same way

I fell in love with you in a city in strife
Just holding your hand
And beneath my eyelids, and in my heart
That’s all still locked away
Just the way it was……

Now I’m asleep in a quiet city
Still clutching your ring
There’s a blue ocean outside, and my love
Was full of hope
Now I’m boarding a train, etc.
Now I’m just boarding a train, etc.
Etc. etc. etc……
Etc. etc. etc……


Arasoi no Machi is easily the most forgettable song on Smile. Lyrically and musically it’s just sort of…fine. There’s nothing particularly bad about it, it’s just too long, too straightforward, and too boring. It almost feels like it was thrown on the album because they wanted another ballad there.

I thought that this felt like an attempt to create versions of this type of song done on past albums, like Donna (Experience Movie), Yonsen Tsubu no Koi no Uta (Experience Movie) or Serruria no oka (Jaguar Hard Pain). The problem is that all three of those songs has more character than this one at least by a little bit. They were either arranged in a more interesting way, or Yoshii put much more emotion into his vocal performance. This theory was sort of confirmed in an interview with Yoshii for the Triad Complete Box, where he said it “inherited” the concepts of Jaguar Hard Pain in being about lovers separated from one another by war. He didn’t explicitly say that it was a song held over from that period though.

The idea for the lyrics seem based around two key phrases: Train (“kisha”, more specifically an older style steam engine) and etc. And so those parts of the song are the most interestingly melodically speaking, but not by a whole lot. There just isn’t much to say about this song, since it’s far too straightforward to have much to chew on. Yemon had already proven on this same album that they can have a more pop sound and still be interesting, so I’m glad that they didn’t really push further in this direction.

I’m also fairly confident the band agreed with my assessment of this song, since as far as I know it’s never been performed live.