Arashi-Wild at Heart preview

The full radio rip for Arashi’s upcoming new single, Wild at Heart, was recently released.

When I first listened to this song I did not like it at all, but literally by the time I was halfway through with the song I was into it. And I admit the song is a little strange. But at the same time it’s so Arashi like. The music has this retro feel to it. I can’t exactly pin point when, but maybe the early 70’s sometime around there. I really love that this single is happy and upbeat. Lately Arashi has been releasing a lot of mature songs, which is fine but this is my favorite kind of Arashi. I just love how this song is so unserious this is honestly one of the best Arashi songs in a while. It has a really fresh sound. It’s super fun and addictive. Songs like this remind me why I love idol music so much.

I am really looking forward to the PV now. I’m hoping for something along the lines of Happiness or Kitto Daijoubu. I also hope that Arashi will release more than 2 singles this year. That 9 month gap in 2011 was awful.

Hey! Say! JUMP-Super Delicate PV preview

A PV preview for Hey! Say! JUMP’s upcoming single, Super Delicate, was just released.

I am a tad biased here, but the PV looks absolutely perfect. It just looks incredible so far and so much better than I was expecting. After I saw the covers I knew that the PV was going to be good, but it looks better than I imagined. Just amazing. The guys look super goreous in it. Well, most of them do. Chinen’s outfit is ridiculous and Inoo has this weird hair going on. But other than that there aren’t really any faults. The dance set is a little bit boring, but the abstract white pieces on the sides do jazz the space up a bit.

This preview is insanly short. And since it is a preview and a short making of we only really get to see the dance. Which is incredible I might add. The sharpness of it and the precision is just amazing. But the last 20 seconds of the preview does play some more of the PV in the background, and you can see that the PV is more than just dancing. Their close-ups seem to be in this glass room and there are also scenes with them wlaking on a runway.

But hands down the absolute best part of this preview is the amount of Yuto in it. I don’t really hide that Yuto is my favorite member of JUMP on this blog. And I couldn’t be happier that Yuto is the co-center. I honestly had my doubts he would be since they neglected him in the song. It’s about time he’s in the spotlight in JUMP again. A few years ago Yuto used to be everywhere and was in the center all the time. But over the years Chinen has slowly been taken over his 2nd place position. Which I of course can’t stand. But at least he’s front in center for this single.

Arashi to release a new single

It was recently announced that Arashi will be releasing their first single of 2012. The single is entitled Wild at Heart and will be released on March 7th. The song is being used as the them for Matsumoto Jun’s drama Lucky Seven. There it is the March 7th date yet again. This makes it the 4th idol single to be released on March 7th. It’ll be exciting to see the race to number one.

I’m really excited for Arashi to be releasing a new single. I’ve been on somewhat of an Arashi kick lately. I’m really starting to see why they’re so popular. I’m looking forward to hearing what the song sounds like. The drama is already using the song, but I cannot find it anywhere. So, if any thrifty Arashi fan can point me in the direction of the song it would be much appreciated.

Hey! Say! JUMP-Super Delicate preview

Recently a short radio rip of Hey! Say! JUMP’s Super Delicate was released.

I gotta tell you, I love this song more and more every time that I hear it. The music is just absolutely perfect. It blends heavy dance music with some salsa influences thrown in. It honestly sounds like a mix between Over, Beat Line, and Shinku. I love that the beginning of the song starts with a really sweet and soft note from Ryosuke, accompanied by equally soft music. And I also love that that soft music lingers for a few second as the heavier music of the verse builds. For the most part the song is sung very softly which is a great contrast to the heavy dance instrumental. And it does lighten the song a bit. And of course the chorus of the song is amazing. The music and singing really pick up, and there are a lot of great extended notes. The song has a very mature sound and it also sounds very passoniate. Like the members are singing this with a lot of emotion.
The only thing that could make this song absolutely perfect is if the line distribution was even remotely fair. Yet again the only person that gets a solo is Ryosuke. Hey! Say! JUMP has 10 members, I’m really getting sick with just hearing one of them. Pretty much every other Johnny’s group lets the other members get lines. Except for Kisumai, but even then it’s 3 members that get lines. Yes, Ryosuke is an amazing singer, but he’s not the only amazing singer in Hey! Say! JUMP. Takaki’s voices is absolutely perfect for this type of song. And if you listened to Beat Line you know that Hikaru’s and Yuto’s are also perfect for this type of song. It seems like whenever Ryosuke is in a drama they use it as an excuse for him to get all the solo lines. I think the infamous Hitomi no Screen proves that. But the real ridiculous part of this is that both Ryosuke and Yuto are in the drama. I get that Ryosuke is the lead, but Yuto gets nothing for being in the drama too? It’s really getting stale only hearing one member. What’s wrong with having another song as fair as Arigatou ~Sekai no Doko ni Itemo~? Well, even in Arigatou Inoo, Keito, and Ryutaro were shafted. But 8/9 would be a massive improvement.

Hey! Say! JUMP to release new single

Now, this news has been floating around for weeks, but it was basically a rumor since it wasn’t confirmed. And I didn’t want to blog about this until it was 100% confirmed. And it was finally officially confirmed a few days ago. Hey! Say! JUMP will be releasing their 9th single. The single is entitled Super Delicate and will be released on February 22nd. The song will be used as the theme members Yamada Ryosuke’s and Nakajima Yuto’s drama Risou no Musuko.

I’m really excited that Hey! Say! JUMP is releasing a new single. Since they are my second favorite Johnny’s group I’m always excited for something new. Especially now that with this new release I can put Magic Power behind me and pretend it doesn’t exists. Though I do admit I wish it was a new album instead, since it’s going on 2 years since their last one and the singles are piling up.
I did listen to the concert rip of and the short previews of this song. And I really do like the mature theme of the song. But I won’t comment on it any further until I can get my hands on a radio rip.

Here are some previews of the song.

Yamapi to release first official solo single

It was announced that Yamapi will be providing the theme for his upcoming drama Saikou no Jinsei no Owarikata~Ending Planner~. The single will be titled Ai, Texas and will be released later this spring by Waner Music Japan. This will mark his 5th solo single overall, but also his first single since leaving NEWS and becoming officially solo. I guess that means his meetings with Warner Music had nothing to do with him debuting in America, but just securing his solo career in Japan. Which is awesome to be honest. I cannot imagine him in the US at all.

I knew Yamapi’s next single would be announced anyday now, but I really wasn’t expecting it to be this soon. And I really didn’t want him to release something before NEWS does. But I guess I should have been expecting it. Since Hey! Say! JUMP’s still unconfirmed new single, Super Delicate, is going to be the theme to Ryosuke’s and Yuto’s drama Risou no Musuko, and AKB48’s new single announcement didn’t mention anything about this drama, that only left Yamapi. This news is completely bittersweet. On one hand I’m still not over the whole NEWS fiasco, but on the other I am still excited for another Yamapi single. I really do like Yamapi’s voice and his solo releases are good. His solo singles anyway, his solo album was terrible.

But the title of the single doesn’t really sit right with me. It’s completely random and makes absolutely no sense. What is so exciting about Texas honestly? There’s not really anything spectacular enough to write a Japanese song about it. Maybe he’ll film the PV in Texas and use this as some sort of cross-promotion for his new show Route 66. It seems like the most logical answer.

NYC’s new PV isn’t a page-turner

A few days ago the full PV for Wonderful Cupid off of NYC’s upcoming double A-side new single, Wonderful Cupid/Garasu no Mahou.

When I first saw the PV previews I was actually pretty excited to see what the full PV looked liked. I thought it had a very cute theme, that was perfect for the audience it was aimed at. Even though being inside of a book has been done before, and actually seems kind of over used, I thought they could have done a lot with the theme. Sadly they don’t seem to do much of anything in the PV. Most of the PV is just NYC turning the book pages. And once inside the book they just seem to be focused on the dogs more than anything. Which is completely boring. Where’s the exciting storline beyond that? What about showing how NYC ended up in the book in the first place. Give me something to work with. Instead of the bland 3 minutes of watching NYC walking nonexistent dogs we were given. Perhaps since the song is for children they felt they really didn’t have to try or something? But it’s actually the exact opposite. Children are very visual. Which is why any children’s show you watch it bursting with colors, odd shapes, and pretty much nonstop excitement. I wish the PV reflected that more, then it would be more watchable. Another PV like Magic Power is what I was honestly expecting.

The cover, how exciting.

Still reminds me so much of the I Wish PV.

I have to admit, they always put NYC in some nice clothes.

A pet shop, I’m uninterested already.

Being inside the book reminds me of the Chance PV.

That hair really does nothing for Ryosuke. :/

I just don’t find Chinen even a little bit cute.

Suddenly reminding me how childish the PV is.

I wish Yuma would go back to having black hair, it’s when he looked the best.

What boring group close-ups. They are just sitting there emotionless.

Enter random foreign chick. I am always pretty jealous whenever I see American or European girls in Japanese music videos.

Though, to be honest, I’m far more jealous of this girl.

Cute.

Sick of the dogs already.

They both have dogs so of course they are meant to be.

Am I the only one who thinks this girl looks a little young? Like might be 14, young?

I see what you did there. Basically making them kiss, without them actually having to kiss.

NYC-Wonderful Cupid PV preview

Roughly a week ago PV preview for NYC’s Wonderful Cupid off their upcoming double A-side new single, Wonderful Cupid/Garasu no Mahou, was released.

It’s a little ironic to be making my PV preview post for Wonderful Cupid right after my PV preview post for Pyoko Pyoko Ultra, because pretty much everything I said about Pyoko Pyoko Ultra works for Wonderful Cupid. But I’m going to repeat it here because most of my Johnny’s readers don’t read my Hello!Project posts and vice versa. NYC is pretty much a group that seems to have been made with the intentions of being a group for children. (And of course also squeeze more money out of Ryosuke and Chinen fans.) Remaking a children’s song and singing about following your dreams made it pretty obvious. And if it wasn’t painfully obvious before Wonderful Cupid has pretty much confirms everything. From the child like lullaby tempo of the song to storybook theme of the PV. But that doesn’t really bother me. I’ve always taken NYC’s music face value. And I do apperciate how upbeat most of their songs are. This song is incredibly lacking to me though. It’s too slow and forgettable. But at least I can the epicness and mature theme of Garasu no Mahou.
As for the PV, it reminds me of the Yume Tamago PV. Just becuase the sets look very similar to me. Nothing adds to a childish theme like have sets made of cardboard. This PV really does take the storybook theme and go for it. The PV shows the members of NYC sitting at a table flipping the pages of a book that they are featured in. And because of that it immediately makes me think of Morning Musume’s I Wish PV and Kusumi Koharu’s Chance PV.  It’s a cute theme and works for the PV. It is honestly a bit stale because I’ve seen similar PVs before, but it’s still a cute theme. No matter how overdone it is.

Here’s a clip of a short making of and short clips of the PV.

And here’s the CM for the single.

Have yourself a very idol Christmas

With it being extremely close to Christmas I want to announce my yearly Christmas hiatus on this blog. I use the word hiatus lightly since I’ll probably be back to blogging December 26th. You know I can’t stay away from blogging for long.
But I mostly want to take this time to wish everyone out there a Merry Christmas. Or actually Happy Holidays instead. Since today is the second day of Hanukkah and tomorrow is Winter Solstice. So, happy Hanukkah and Happy early Winter Solstice. And Happy early Kwanzaa. And everything in beytween.

And in the spirt of the Holidays, it calls for a pic spam of epic proportions.

Also, here are some Christmas or winter themed idol songs.

SWF file 

NYC-Wonderful Cupid/Garasu no Mahou previews

Recently on Hey! Say! 7’s radio show they released a mall preview for NYC’s upcoming song Wonderful Cupid. Since Nakayama Yuma’s solo song, Garasu no Mahou, has already been released digitally I thought I’d also post about that song too. I do apologize for this post being so late, it just completely slipped my mind. 

Let’s start off with my reactions to Wonderful Cupid. I am just completely underwhelmed by this song. It songs nothing like previous NYC singles, and nothing like what I was expecting at all. The song is a very soft sounding ballad. People have said that it sounds like a lullaby and I agree 100% with that. The song sounds very sleepy, and child like. I’m not really into the song at all.

Next is Yuma’s solo song from Playzone Garasu no Mahou. Now, this song I like. This song is also sung very light and soft for the most part, so it does match with Wonderful Cupid in that sense. But the music is completely different. It has this great dance beat to it. It also has this very sad and heartbreaking feel to it. Which matches the sad lyrics of the song. All around this song is very sad and beautiful. It’s also sung pretty well. I never thought Yuma was really that amazing of a singer. He’s good, but there are certainly more talented singers in Johnny’s. But he really sounds good in this song. It fits his voice perfectly. I just really hope they don’t change anything about this song now that it’s being released as a single.

Best Album Songs of 2011

Now, I am bringing you my conclusion to my 2011 ranking, countdown extravaganza: Best Album songs of 2011.

This was the hardest list to write, there have been so many good album songs released this year. This list alone to be roughly 3 hours just to rank. I relistened to every album released in 2011 and wrote down every song that I liked. At that point I was at 26, and I then had to relisten to each song and painstakingly narrow it down even further. While some songs were more obvious then others, it was overall a pretty difficult task.

I actually wanted to add a part 4 this year: Best PVs of 2011. But these posts took way longer than I anticipated already, so I was completely uninspired to write it. But there’s always next year I suppose.

10. Renai Circus

AKB48’s first original album was pretty dismal at best. Renai Circus is pretty much one of the only decent songs on the entire album. But even this song isn’t all that spectacular, which is why it’s so low. I think the best way to desribe this song is adorable, but I’d expect nothing less from Team B. The music is pretty upbeat and silly, I do wish they incorporated more of a circus element into though. My absolute favorite part of the song is the chorus that’s when the song really picks up and is super cute. I also really love all the background speaking in noises throughout the song, it just adds the unseriousness of the song. The lyrics are also pretty cute. For the most part it’s just describing what a circus is, but I still think love and a circus is a cute comparison. Though I do think the trapeze parts describe love better. The song is just fun, and silly the type of song that I like.

9. Santa Maria

Yamapi’s solo album is another album I wasn’t really all that impressed with. His voice just does not fit with club music. So, I can just imagine how bad his solo career is going to be. But that’s off topic. But when I listened to this album this song just immediately stuck out to me. It’s probably one of the most meaningful songs on the entire album. It’s basically Yamapi losing, or about to lose, his girlfriend, and then begging Santa Maria to bring her back because he can’t bare to be without her. I think the song is incredibly sad and heartbreaking. And I’ll admit the reason I do like this song so much is because the lyrics remind me of Last Kiss by J Frank Wilson and the Cavaliers. But the lyrics still are good. The club music does kind of ruin the song a bit. It’s basically like saying, “I’m so sad that I feel like dying, but you know I could still dance.”

8. Icchoume Rock

I really love this song, I think it’s definitely the best song from the album. But that’s not really saying much as I consider 7 Berryz Times to be one of their weakest albums. But Icchoume Rock is really fun, and upbeat. It’s got a subtle rock beat and is extremely easy to dance to. The super positive message of the song is another reason why I like it. It’s basically a song about being and happy, and to just jumpi into things instead of waiting. I like idol songs like that, songs that just instantly cheer you up.

7. Tooku Made

Arashi’s Beautiful World album had a very a dance/electronic theme to it, I thought it just completely worked for them. As, a whole the entire album was great so it was super difficult to pick which songs were the best. But I picked Tooku Made because it has the unique Arashi sound. It’s slow paced, but at the same time it’s still upbeat. And the n the chrous hits and it’s just incredibly catchy and amazing. The song is pretty simple, but it’s simplicity is another reason I like it. It’s light, fresh, and really pretty. And since this is Arashi we get the pretty typical love lyrics. It’s about any mundane moment being significantly better because you’re with the person you love. It’s just really adorable.

6. Kakenukete Blue

I absolutely love YuiKaori because they encompass everything I love about idol music. Upbeat music and sugary sweet voices. And this song doesn’t disappoint. The music has heavy anime sounding music which is pretty much a standard with YuiKaori. The song is pretty upbeat for the whole song, but of course it really picks up during the chorus. Where you really get the full effect of their adorable voices and how well that they blend together. I just enjoy every second of this song. It is so fun and cute that I don’t even mind that I have no idea what the song is about.

5. Ok Yeah

Here comes Morning Musume delivering a hard-hitting, heart pumping dance song. This song is just perfect in every way. It is insanely upbeat and incredible to dance to. The music is amazing, and I love all the voice and sound effects. Like all the woos straight out of eurobeat. (Or Uchouten Love.) And I love when Reina’s, Risa’s, and Sayumi’s high hotes are distorted and extened with the robot effect. I think it completely works with the song. And I love the intense music break where it’s just nothing but electronic trance music for like 30 seconds. The song is about enjoying your youth and going all out chasing your dreams and life. While I am not really in my youth (Technically I am since I’m only 19, but I’m not in my high school youth, which is what they most likely mean.) But the lyrics are still good if you disregard all the youth and young girl aspects. The song then just means being confident and not living without regrets.

4. Mada minu sekai e

This song is just incredible. Which is why they made a PV for it. The music has this futuristic, electronic sound to it. And it’s not too much. It’s like the perfect balance of intense music and soft parts. I absolutely love the autotune they put on Sho’s rap parts, it’s added at the perfect part of the song and it’s done perfectly. The entire song is catchy from start to finish. I have not been able to get this song out of my head for months. They lyrics are pretty encouraging too. Basically telling you to keep going no matter how usure you are of the future.

3. Suki da na kimi ga

This song, I have been absolutely in love with this song since I first heard the radio rip. It’s just perfect. You Mainly hear Sayumi’s voice and instead of ruining it she actually enhances it. Which is a complete rarity for her. This song just completely compliments Sayumi’s and Mizuki’s voices. And Sayumi and Mizuki blend together so seamlessly it almost sounds like one voice. People have complained that you can only hear Sayumi, but that completely isn’t true. Really listen and you can hear Mizuki. She’s just taking the lower parts and is harmonizing, like what Aibon used to do in W. Songs like Juushichi no Natsu you mainly hear Nono.Off topic, I know. This song is just amazing! It’s cuteness overload. It is soft, airy, and pretty, while still have upbeat and interesting elements to the song. The lyrics are also equally cute. It’s about liking someone no matter what their falts are and still thinking they are cute. And wanting to be with them no matter what.

2. Iza, Susume! Steady go!

Iza, Susume! Steady go! has always been one of my favorite songs off of C-ute’s 6th album. But I didn’t realize just how much I loved this song until I saw them perform it live. And it is incedible! This song is nonstop energy from start to finish. The music is heavy and intesnse and the singing matches. Airi sounds just amazing in this song, you can really hear the emotion in her lines. This song is so positive, and upbeat, and fun, and just everything about it is amazing. Everyone’s singing is just so powerful. This song is just so engaging on every level from start to finish. I can’t get tired of this song or get it out of my head. The lyrics are great too. About going full force no matter what. And to always be positive and dream endlessly.

1. Wani to Shampoo

And MomoClo manages to come out on top! After I heard Battle and Romance for the first there was no doubt in my mind that Wani to Shampoo was one of the best idol songs. When I first heard it I wasn’t even thiking about my 2011 top 10 posts, I just thought it was one of the best idol songs I’d heard in a while. Momoiro Clover Z really is the most energetic idols out there. This song hits you with a powerful punch of energy as soon as the chorus hits. And you can’t help but being as over the top as the song itself is. I just can’t properly put into words how much I love this song. The intensity of the song, the energy, the singing, how danceable it is, it’s just an amazing song. If anyone ever asked me why I liked idol music this is the song I’d have them listen to. I don’t even care that this song is about forgetting to do you summer homework. It just shows that idol music is supposed to be fun, and not serious. Especially from an idol group that wears panda makeup and wears power rangers costumes in their PVs. Whenever I’m in a bad mood or just want and instant shot of energy, I play this song.

 

Honorable mentions:

1. Berryz Koubou – Onna No Pride
2. C-ute Chou Wonderful
3. C-ute Midnight Temptation
4. Morning Musume – Silver no udedokei
5. Morning Musume – Kaiketsu positive A
6. Arashi – Morning Light
7. Arashi – Negai
8. Arashi – Always
9. Arashi – Shake It
10. Arashi – Doko ni Demo Aru Uta
11. Momoiro Clover Z – MomoClo no Nippon Manzai!
12. YuiKaori – Magic Starter
13. YuiKaori – Puppy Love
14. YuiKaori – Crystal no Chikai
15. AKB48 – High School Days
16. Yamashita Tomohisa – Kuchizuke de Adios
17. no3b – Cloudy Sky

Worst Singles of 2011

Continuing on with my 2011 countdown extravaganza I bring you part 2: Worst singles of 2011.

Unlikes last year, this actually wasn’t the hardest list to make. I already had a general idea of which songs I didn’t like as much. Mostly because I’ve been making a mental note of it all year because I knew I’d be doing this countdown. I would also like to stress that I don’t hate any of these songs. They are just not as good as some of the other idols songs releases this year, and therefore make the bottom half of songs. Of course I still do occasionally listen to them when I am in the mood, it’s just a rare occassion.

10. Momoiro Sparkling

When this song first came out I did like it. But over the months I’ve been liking it less and less. It is definitely the weakest single C-ute released this year. Overall the song is pretty bland. There aren’t any extreme high notes, there’s not a catchy chorus, and the music is just a bit too generic. And I’m afraid that the lyrics aren’t really any better. I think the nonsensical words thrown in are what makes the lyrics the most annoying for me. The song is basically about going boldly into love during the summer. Which is pretty much a summer love song standard, but there’s nothing really special about the lyrics. No heartbreaking moments or absolutely adorable moments that make you think it’s a great song. For the most part is sounds like ever other summer themed idol song.

9. My Home

Since the first time I’ve heard this song I’ve never really been a fan of it. At first it was because of how soft the song is. As I’ve said before I’m not a big fan of ballads or slow songs. The song stays pretty soft the entire song, even during the chorus it hardly picks up. And I honestly find it boring, it doesn’t really hold my interest. And once I read the translation it pretty much sealed my indifference of the song. I think the lyrics are equally boring. They basically talk about what a year of average family life is about. I mean, I guess the song is telling me to appreciate the small things in life. And that something as simple as a family is important, so I should treasure it. That’s all well and good, but I don’t have a family. (Of my own, I mean. Obviously everyone has a family.) So, the lyrics aren’t all that meaningful to me. Ask me if I like the song in about 10 years, then I’ll probably be singing a different tune.

8. Ai no Dangan

This was also a song that I liked at first. I actually liked this song, a whole lot. The music is intense and it’s sung very well. On some level I do like this song. But what ruins the song completely for me are the lyrics. As soon as I found out what the  lyrics were actually about it knocked the song down a few pegs. I just think the lyrics are pretty terrible. The song is about wanting to make some one love you by shooting them with your love bullet. But being upset beause they always dodge it. The song seems a bit pathetic to me. To me it sounds like they are about trying to get someone who’s not into you to reciprocate your feelings. I mean the lyrics talk about wanting to thrown yourself at them and even though you’ve been together a lot they’re not getting the message. I don’t know, songs about being desperate aren’t really my thing.

7. Yume Tamago

I do think this song is incredibly cute and pretty much the type of songs that NYC always release. I also think the singing is pretty good. It’s nothing spectacular, but it’s still good. Well, at least Ryosuke and Yuma sound good. Chinen is in their ruinging the song with his terrible voice per usual. At the same time I think this song is also incredibly immature. There’s a fine line between childish songs and soungs for children, this song obviously crosses that line. The song is about reaching your dream which is childish, but still not really. However, the lyrics explain how to reach your dream in such a childish manner. Like it will grow in your heart, and to pick and choose your colorful dream. I can’t say it’s a song I would proudly proclaim my love for.

6. Min Min Min

I’ve always thought Min Min Min was a pretty werid song. I honestly don’t get it at all. The verses are sung in SDN48’s “sexy” voices like all their past A-sides have. But then the chorus comes on and it’s trying to be all cutesy. There’s a total disconnect there. It honestly sounds like 2 completely different songs were shoved together. And I also have no idea what the noise that cicadas make has to do with anything. Is it because cicadas are heat bugs? And SDN48 calling out Min is basically saying that SDN48 are hot or made hot when someone they like is near? It has to be something stupid like that. I also don’t like the song because the lyrics are as pathetic and desperate as Ai no Dangan. But this song is even worse. It is actually about clinging onto someone after they’ve left you. The whole song is basically not taking no for an answer after you’ve been dumped. Am I the only one who sees how clinging on is just embarrassing yourself?

5. Cry

I am just so disappointed with DiVA as a whole. They take some of the best singers in AKB48 and then they never give them a decent single. I guess management thinks that giving them simple songs will make people focus on their singing ability, but it honestly has the opposite effect. And I just think their talent is being wasted on mediocre songs. This song is obviously sung incredibly well. But there’s nothing really special about this song. The same exact beat is booming through the entire song, and as a whole it’s not really enough to keep my attention. The lyrics also come off a little whiny to me. As they are about literally crying over lost love. Which is an extremely sad moment. But I don’t really think the lyrics were touching enough.

4. Kaze wa Fuiteiru

This song, I don’t really know what more I can say about it. I pretty much ripped it to shreads in my blog already. And with good reason, this song is just so horribly bland and lackluster. It’s somber, and it’s sad, and I just don’t care for it. They put hardly any effort into it. Like I said before, it seems lately AKB48 has been riding their fame wave to sell singles instead of actually making great songs. They’ve gotten so big and popular that now any mediocre song they throw out will sell a million copies just becasue their fanbase is so large. Which is the type of fame Arashi is resting on. And it honestly makes both artist’s music suffer. Both groups release 1 or 2 really good singles a year, and then the rest are mediocre at best. I also don’t find the lyrics to be all that great. Since it was a song for the tsunami they really tried to make it meaningful, but I don’t think it’s quite there. It’s about picking yourself up after a disaster, but the lyrics feel empty to me.

3. Sakura no Ki ni Narou

I’m going to voice an unpopular opinion here and say I do not like this song at all, not one bit. For some strange reason, that I absolutely cannot fathom, everyone seems to really love this song. First, off I think the song is far too soft. I don’t like ballads. Not in English and certainly not in Japanese. They are just boring, and they lose my attention quite easily. The song is only a ballad to get out the deep emotion of the song, of course. But the way it’s sung has nothing to do with my dislike of the song, No, much like every other song on this list it’s all about the lyrics. It’s a sad song about graduating, taking a step further, but the eternal cherry blossom tree with always been there so you can recapture your school days. Which is perfectly fine, if the lyrics weren’t strikingly similar to the song they released last year Sakura no Shiori. Read the translation to these songs back to back and tell me they aren’t 80% the same exact song! That is just lazy writting on Aki-P’s part. All graduation songs do not have to sound the same or be completely sad. I mean look at 10nen Zakura, I love that song because of how upbeat it is and how it’s such a positive reflection of graduation. Just like Last Forever by Buono and Cherry Saku Yuuki by An Cafe are.

2. My Days For You

Oh, ManoEri why did you have to release this sad excuse for a single when I was finally starting to really get used to and like your songs? There isn’t one good aspect to this song. The music is very soft and bland and ManoEri’s voice sounds horrid. During the chorus her voice sounds so strained and squeeky because she’s hitting notes and singing in a tone that doesn’t work for her voice. She should stick to cute sounds, her voice is bearable in those. This song, however, is so forgettable that I honestly forgot it even existed until I watched H!P’s summer concerts. And of course the lyrics match the song. This is yet another song that is begging someone to love you. Granted this is done is a slightly cute way that you almost feel sorry for her. I still don’t like the overall meaning.

1. No Cry No More

And the worst song of the year goes to AAA. Just like it was obvious which songs I would pick for the best single of 2011, this was also a no brainer. But honestly, I’m not really sure why I dislike this song so much. But I just do. Maybe it’s due to the fact that Misako sings most of the song, per usual, and her voice is especially ear piercing in this song. Misako is fine in moderation, but for the most part I can’t stand her voice. And it really rubs me the wrong way in this song, and just ruins the song completely. The lyrics are a little meaningful, telling you not to cry and to face everything head on. But be that as it may, I just do not like this song.

Best Singles of 2011

Since I had so much fun doing my best and worst of 2010 extravaganza posts, I knew it was something I wanted to make a yearly event on my blog. So, here I am doing it again! In this post I’ll be ranking my personal favorite 10 singles of 2011. This list was a lot harder than last year. I started following more idol groups which added to the number of singles I had to pick through. I counted and there are about 81 singles from idols that I follow. Which is an insane amount of music to go through, so these rankings took me a few days to do.

So, without further ado I bring you part 1 of my 2011 ranking extravaganza.

10. Kakkowarui I love you!

Believe it or not, number 10 is the hardest song to pick. Mainly because it’s the absolute last song I can pick, and I have to really think about what last song I want to add. Originally number 10 was going to be Not Yet’s Naminori Kakigoori, but I couldn’t stop thinking about Kakkowarui I love you. And from that it became obvious that I had to pick it. I absolutely love this song. From the hard rock and electronic beat that it has to the way it’s sung. I think everyone in French Kiss are amazing singers, and everyone has a very similar tone to their voice so they blend together amazingly well. I love how soft every 2nd line of the verse sounds. But the real reason I picked this song is because of the chorus. The song is pretty slow for the most part, but when that chorus hits it takes the song to whole new level. The chorus is is just incredible and extremely catchy. Just the way it’s sung it’s very entrancing. And of course the cute lyrics also add to my love of the song. I just love that it’s about stumbling though an accidental love. It’s really cute. But also sad at the same time, because it’s also about not being able to say I love you because you feel like it’s too late.

9. Ganbatte Seishun

To me SUPER GiRLS has always been the Frankenstein monster of idol groups. Collectively, and shameless, copying elements of other idol groups to heighten their own popularity. While, that might annoy people I say, “do what you gotta do.” And that reason is pretty much why I’m so drawn to SUPER GiRLS. They make the typical, or generic to some, idol songs which are my favorite. And Ganbatte Seishun is 100% an idol song right down to it’s core. This song is upbeat and happy, with encouraging lyrics that tell you to always do your best. And that’s pretty much all there is to the song, but that’s honestly all it needs. Ganbatte Seisun is one of those mood maker songs that instantly cheer you up. And that’s all you can really ask from music.

8. Maji Desu ka Ska!

Since I first heard this song I wasn’t shy about praising it or professing my absolute love for the song. And that hasn’t changed one bit. I’ve listened to this song constantly throughout the year and have not grown tired of it once. A song like this is just Morning Musume at it’s best to me. It’s upbeat, happy, energetic, and just over the top fun. The song has an infectious ska beat and even more infectious chorus. Each line might not correlate to the next, and the song might not actually have an overall meaning, but that doesn’t stop me from loving every second of it. From start to finish you just can’t help but want to dance and sing along to it. And not every song has that effect. 

7. Valentine Kiss

Watarirouka Hashiritai 7 is one of my favorite idol groups out there because they make nothing but adorable songs. And that’s exactly why Vanlentine Kiss landed a spot on my list. This song was definitely one of the, if not the, cutest idol songs released this year. Even though this song is a cover I think Warota really made it their own. And I honestly think it surpasses the original. If only on the cuteness factor alone. But who doesn’t love a song about trying to get someone’s attention to have a kiss on Valentine’s Day? Especially if it’s sung by the always adorable Watarirouka Hashiritai 7.

SWF file 

6. Heroine ni Narou ka!

I never really realized just how much I love this song until I started making this list. But looking back at the year this has been one of those songs that I couldn’t get enough of. And the reason I love this song so much is because it’s powerful. Just everything about it is powerful. The electronic/dance dance music is very strong, as well as the singing being extremely powerful. There’s a lot of intensity in the way it’s sung, it’s honestly one of Berryz’s best vocal performances. Especially Miaybi’s whoa towards the end of the song, that was just incredible. I was also really inpressed with Yurina’s harmonizing and Risako’s high note. As well as loving Massa’s echoed mirai. The lyrics are also pretty powerful. They have these empowering undertones to them. To just step on out the street and just be super confident because tonight you can do it. And because, hey, everyone notices you tonight.

5. Vivi Natsu

Ever since I first discovered Passpo they’ve been impressing me with their unique sound. And because of that they becoming one of my favorite idol groups out there. I think Vivi Natsu really encompasses what makes Passpo so great. The music is a great combination of a great guitar riff and still that sweet idol music sound. And it also features awesome rapping parts by Naomi, Shiori, and Anna. Though honestly Noami’s raps are hands down the best. And it also has that really beautiful part where Mio Mio sings softly and sounds absolutely amazing.

4. T.W.L.

I’m a little sad that T.W.L. is the only Johnny’s song to make the list this year. It was actually a pretty good year of JE, there were just other songs that were better. T.W.L. is one of those songs that I didn’t expect to like as much as I do. When I first heard it I was kinda indifferent towards it, and thought it was just ok. This song is really fun and extremely catchy. It captures the crazyness and over the topness of Kanjani8 without going to overboard. And can I just say that I absolutely love Subaru’s solo at the end with the microphone effect. That is definitely the highlight of the song. The lyrics however are honestly all over the place, so it’s hard to really get the message. I mean, I’m not even sure what T.W.L. even means. What I take away from the song is that it’s about facing your future no matter how unsure it might be. And to just honestly cope with life. If things are hard say they are, instead of just pretending to be happy.

3. Z Densetsu ~Owarinaki Kakumei~

When I was picking my top singles of 2011 it was a complete no brainer to add Z Densetsu ~Owarinaki Kakumei~ to my list. MomoClo is one of the most energetic idols out there, and this is probably the most energetic songs they have every released. I absolutely love this song. It’s just nonstop energy and excitment from start to finish. It’s one of those songs that is fun to listen to. It’s a song that isn’t trying to be serious, it’s just trying to make you happy. I also really love the lryrics to this song. I love how they are about each member’s personality. And then the rest of the song really matches their weekend heroines theme. And the lyrics go into say how MomoClo won’t lose and will protect fans. And will sing with all their hearts and might to cheer up fans. I think that’s really sweet. And it really seems like MomoClo really means what they are singing.

2. Uchouten Love

It’s a bit bittersweet to pick the last song featuring the original line up of S/mileage. But hey, at least they went out with a bang. And it really was a bang indeed. This song is absolutely incredible in every single way. From start to finish this song is a nonstop party. The heavy eurobeat music doesn’t let up for even a second throughout the song. Ever during the soft solos towards the end of the song. You can hear the beat growing in the background, waiting to make it’s blaring return. And I love the song for it. The song is incredibly fun and so loud that it almost demands you dance along. And S/mileage’s sugary sweet voices really work with this type of techno music. It’s one of those combinations that sounds terrible on paper, but then you actually hear it and you’re blown away. The lyrics are the typical idol fare of falling in love and being excited every second because of that. The overly cute lyrics we’ve come to expect from S/mileage.

1. Banzai Venus

It was completely obvious to me which song was number one, it was so obvious it was the first song I wrote down. When it comes to 2011 I cannot think of one song that surpasses Banzai Venus. SKE48 is really starting to surpass AKB48 for me. Mostly because of their constant upbeat releases lately. The song is actually pretty slow for most of the song, but once the chorus starts that’s it. You just get this punch of pure energy that you can’t help but be drawn into the song. It’s so mesmerizing and addicting that just the power from the song’s small chorus beat every other song this year. No other song this year gets me as pumped or happy as Banzai Venus does. The only real drawback to this is that some of this song;s lyrics are so random that they are laughable. A cart full of toliet paper, and an old lady being delayed in line. What does that have to do with anything? Lucky the rest of the lyrics are much better. And it’s a pretty cute song about to have the courage to go for it and confess your feelings.

 

Honorable mentions: (Because yet again, I had way too many favorites.)

1. Morning Musume – Kare to Issho ni Omise ga Shitai
2. C-ute – Sekaiichi HAPPY na Onna no Ko
3. Mano Erina – Seishun no Serenade
2. S/mileage – Please Miniskirt Postwoman!
4. Arashi – Meikyuu Love Song
5. KAT-TUN – Ultimate Wheels
6. Tegomass – Aoi Bench
7. Hey! Say! JUMP – Over
8. AKB48 – Flying Get
9. Watarirouka Hashiritai 7 – Hetappi Wink
10. Not Yet – Naminori Kakigoori
11. SKE48 – Oki Doki
12. NMB48 – Zetsumetsu Kurokami Shoujo
13. YuiKaori – Shooting Smile
14. AAA – Daiji na Koto
15. SUPER GiRLS – Joshiryoku Paradise
16. Yamashita Tomohisa – Hadakanbo

KAT-TUN Announces 6th album

It was announced that KAT-TUN will be releasing their 6th album. The album is entitled Chain and will be released on February 22nd.

I’m not really that big of KAT-TUN fan, and that’s mostly because I’m just not into a majority of their albums songs. There are only a few here and there that I actually like. So, I’m not really too excited that they will be releasing another album. I’d honestly be much more excited for another new single.
Let me know when NEWS or Hey! Say! JUMP are finally releasing another album, then you’ll get genuine excitment.

Akanishi Jin-Seasons PV preview

Recently a PV preview for Jin’s 2nd Japanese solo single, Seasons, was released.

The quality of this PV preview is less than low quality, so it’s extremely hard to really get a feel for the PV. But from what I can make of it, it seems like Jin is singing with his PV daughter the majority of the time. They are singing together back to back in black and white. And the rest of the PV shows Jin singing in the rain and ominously singing in front of candles. I’m not really getting what the storyline is supposed to be, but it’s only 30 seconds long. Obviously it will become apparent when the PV is released.
Can I just say how hilarious this whole single is? And not because it’s bad or anything, because it’s not. The song actually sounds nice. It’s hilarious because this song is in English. English! And so is the B-side! So, why is he releasing this in Japan and not America? Couldn’t he have just simultaneously released it in Japan and America like he did with Test Drive? Are Japanese fans so selfish that they would feel abandoned if Jin didn’t jeopardize his entire US career just to release a single exclusively for them? And not only that, the Japanese PV already looks better than Test Drive does. Mostly because he’s actually showing his face in this video. Hiding your face isn’t going to keep Americans from knowing your Asian or that your face has soft features that Americans would say is girly. Just cut your hair already then. And stop complaining you need a haircut. Because that’s got to be the only reason he wants one. I just don’t understand what is managment is doing. I didn’t get why he was releasing Seasons to begin with, but I accepted it because I thought it was going to be in Japanese. But now that I know it’s in English, I am literally at loss for words. Just crash and burn already Jin. Because it seems like your magament wants you to.

ABC-Z to debut next year!

A press conference was held during ABC-Z’s stage show, ABC Star Theater, that announced that ABC-Z will finally be making their debut. A.B.C.-Z announced that they will be releasind a DVD next year, making it the first time a Johnny’s group has debuted this way.

Congratulations to ABC-Z. I wish I could say I was surprised but it’s been pretty obvious for a while that ABC-Z would be the next group to go. I don’t know much about ABC-Z since I don’t follow Juniors, but I have seen them perform a few times on Shounen Club. They are a pretty solid group and all the member’s seem to be very strong singers. And I’ve started to really like Kawai Fumito after seeing his impressions a few times on Junior Colosseum. I also think it pretty much safe to say that this will be the last older group to debut, since there aren’t really any older groups left. And I doubt the Question? is ever going to debut. Which is sad because I love Igo Akun.
I’m going to handle this debut the same way I did with Kisumai. See what their eventual debut single is like, and see if they are worth following. But I can already tell that I’m probably going to like them more than Kisumai. Just their overall sound is a lot closer to the type of idol music that I like. There are elements in ABCZ that remind me of Arashi.

How and why I’m a fan of Japanese music

Ever since I started this blog I always wanted to make a post about my history with Japanese music and how I got into Japanese music in the first place. And when my post about my love hate relationship with AAA was featured on
International Wota, Ray said he would like me to talk more about Jrock (And Hinoi Team. But he wanted me to go release by release and give my opinions on them, which I’m honestly not going to do in this post. Perhaps I will sometime in the future.) And that was pretty much an excuse for me to write this post now. It’s taken me this long to write it because I was hesitant to post about it at all, because I’m not sure if people really care about my backstory too much. But whether a lot of people care about this post or not, I really felt like writing it.  Half because I think some people are curious to see how my taste in music has evolved over the years and half because the reason I got into Japanese music is so random that it’s almost laughable. It wasn’t really as cut-and-dry as when I first started to like Kpop. Since I was already into Japanese music the jump wasn’t that hard. Also, this is most likely going to be a giant wall of text, you’ve been warned.

Obviously, everyone found out about Japanese music a ton of different ways for a ton of different reasons. I like to think that most people found out about it in some grand way like stumbling upon it on the internet or hearing a Japanese song at the end of a Japanese movie and then searching for the song. Or even through anime or videogames. I guess that’s not really all that grand, but I’ve always though the way I got into Japanese music is slightly silly and ridiculous. Even though it’s just past 7 years that I’ve been into Japanese music I can honestly remember the reason I got into it like it was yesterday. It was the first day of 7th grade, I was sitting at a table with people I wasn’t friends with at all. And among them was this girl who was pretty much labeled weird by everyone. So, to make things less awkward it was randomly asked “if you could learn any language which one would you learn?” Come to think of it, I might have actually be the person who asked this question. Which completely proves how awkward and shy I am around people I don’t know. Everyone answered with obvious languages like French or Spanish, I said Italian, but this random girl was different. She said Japanese. And I remember just being completely dumbfounded. Being 12 years old at the time I knew absolutely nothing about Japan at all. To me Japan was such a random country that was so out of the ordinary. And at the time I could not fathom why she would pick such an unusual language. I later found out she only liked Japan because of anime, but I didn’t even really know or care what anime was at the time.

And for some reason that honest and strange responce really stuck with me. I kept asking myself, “Why Japan? What is so great about this country?” So, when I got home from school I started looking up Japan just to find out what was so appealing about it. And I looked up Japan for a while. I think it was about a month. But since I was 12 in all honesty, it was probably closer to a week. I remember looking up everything, history, culture, fashion, food, etc. And because I had been doing that for a while I started to think Japan was an interesting country. Then one day it just hit me, I had an idea. And it is such a clear vivid memory that I can honestly remember the exact moment it happened. I simply just though to myself, “Since I like Japan so much, I wonder what the music from Japan sounds like?” And that simple  question, because I was curious about everything at the time, started everything. Actually I’ve always been like that. I remeber when we started learning about astronomy for the first time in 3rd grade I was so interested in it I started watching anything I could about space. I was the only nerdy 9 year old in my class that watched the science channel. XD

But anyway, back to the topic at hand. I did a simple google search of Japanese music. And I came across a website that was streaming a few songs. Among them were the artists I bothered listening to, which were Hamasaki Ayumi and Dir en grey.  The songs on the site that I listened to were M and Duty by Hamasaki Ayumi, and The Final by Dir en grey. I think I might have also listened to Embryo, but I honestly can’t remember. Looking back that moment was completely symbolic.  Those 2 artists represented complete opposite ends of the spectrum. And it was the defining moment as a fan, as whoever I chose would determine what type of Japanese music fan I would become. I do admit from the moment I heard both artists I completely fell in love with all of the songs. However, in the end I did gravitate more to Dir en grey. I just found the music to be so different then anything I had ever heard before. At the time I didn’t have my own taste of music. I was still pretty impressionable and just listened to whatever my older sister was listening to at the time. Which was Green Day, Blink 182, The Offspring, things like that. Which probably also swayed my opinion a bit. I just found Dir en grey’s music to be interesting and enticing. That and the fact that I thought Kyo was incredibly gorgeous. Which is slightly shallow, but what can I say?

And just like that I started to really get into Jrock. I listened to basically anything I could get my hands on. Though my main focuses were Dir en grey, Gazette, Alice Nine, An Cafe, and Miyavi. And when I say I was into Jrock I was really into it. Usually when I like something I can’t just like it casually, I usually latch onto it and absorb myself completely in it. Which some people might take as being obsessive. But I prefer to think I’m just enthusiastic about the things I like, and maybe with a touch of zealous. So, when I got into Jrock I got into it 150%. It was the majority of what I listened to for months, it was all I talked about, I wanted to dress Jrock, all other music was inferior, etc. I also used to quote Jrock lyrics frequently. No, seriously I’d quote them. Not the actual lyrics but the translations. My favorite quotes I used to reiterate frequently were: “Even loved ones scatter like petals from flowers in my hand. So even if I engraved the meaning that I lived in my hand, it will only be known as flowers of vanity.” Which is from The Final by Dir en grey. I also used to quote, “And a flower, doesn’t even know it’s own beauty it’s entire life. Sad isn’t it?” Which is from Miyavi’s Girls be Ambitious. I also called Kyo a prohet a couple dozen times. Which is something Kyo fans used to, and still probably do, call him. Which I am so over and is slightly embarassing to admit now. And let’s not forget the absolute hatred I had for Kisaki. Full on I wished he was dead hatred. And the reason for such an intense hatred? Well, a rumor of course. I’m sure Jrock fans immediately know what I’m reffering to. And if you don’t here’s the story. Everyone is probably well aware that before Dir en grey was formed all the members minus Toshiya were in a band called La:Sadie’s. In La:Sadie’s instead of Toshiya being the bassist it was instead Kisaki. The rumor then goes like this: Kyo had a girlfriend, I’ve also heard fiance, back then. Allegedly Kisaki slept with her. Which devestated Kyo and since then he’s refused to write happy songs. Which is sort of true. Kyo’s girlfriend did cheat on him back then, however no one knows 100% why or who it was with. But fans love to place blame. And I was one of them. I started to hate Kisaki and refused to listen to Phantasmagoria. Pretty ridiculous right? And I seriously never listened to them, the first song I ever heard by them was Kami no Uta which was their final song, that was released in 2007. However, as much as I loved, and still love, Kyo my full focus and fangirl attention went 100% to Miyavi. I followed him insanely closely, closer than anyone I had ever followed up until then, and even now. There is not 1 artist that I like half as much as Miyavi. Not even Morning Musume. You could add every idol group I love and maybe that would equal my love and adoration. Which should show how much I love Miyavi. I remember I boasted about knowing everything about Miyavi to my sister once. And she made the mistake of asking, “what do you mean everything?” So I preceded to tell her everything which took 45 miutes. Which I mentioned to her the other day when I told her about Berryz Koubou coming to AnimeNEXT, in which she said, “Oh god, don’t remind me.” There was also that one time my friend insulted Miyavi in front of me and I had to literally stop myself from slapping her. Good times. XD

I was so silly and obnoxious back then. I was the type of fan everyone hates. But I was 12-14 for god’s sake. Obviously, I’ve changed considerably since then. I just wanted to show the kind of mindset I had back then. Which is why I never gave Super Junior or Arashi a second look. Both groups were insanely popular on internet at the time, so of course I had to look them up. They were so happy and upbeat that it was laughable. I was listening to guys singing about suicide and sleeping with their mother (Seriously, Gazette’s Sugar Pain is a hilarious song.) that I couldn’t take them seriously. Which is a contradiction really because An Cafe’s and Miyavi’s music was incredibly upbeat and happy. Even Alice Nine has never been really heavy. And I did still listen to Jpop at the time. But I guess it made sense to me at the time. XD But I think it was really mainly because they were overly happy and they were guys, if they were females I probably would have listened to them. An Cafe and Miyavi were fine to me because they were still Jrock. Despite being insanely upbeat they still dressed and were Jrock. At the time I was more interested in Jrock guys than the male idol look. That has to have been my mindset.

But when I first got into Japanese music even though I was heavily into Jrock it’s not all I listened to. I did another google search of Japanese music and discovered Puffy AmiYumi and Otsuka Ai. And a couple months after I got into Japanese music for some reason we switched to cable. And I begged my mother to get the anime network that they offered just so I could get bento beat box to be able to watch Japanese music videos on TV. We only ended up having cable for a few months but it was enough time to discover some new music. I honestly can’t remeber all the music they offered, I can only remember the music I liked. Oh for some reason I also remember vividly that Chemistry was one of the artists, only because I remember saying that they were awful. The songs I did like were Shouchi no Suke by Suitei Shoujo, Shining Star Wasurenai Kara by Tamaki Nami and Rainy Days Never Stays by The Brilliant Green. I was so in love with those songs that I tapped the videos off my TV. I still have that VHS tape floating around my house somewhere. And because of the anime network, I became a pretty big fan of Tamaki Nami and Tommy Heavnly6/February6. I also googled which artists videos we featured in the opening of bento beatbox and discovered Koda Kumi and ZONE that way. Also, like I said before in my AAA post I was incredibly into Hinoi Team at the time. They were a group I randomly found and became attached to because they had just formed and they were my age. I’ve already talked about them a great deal and don’t feel like repeating it again, so if you really care about how I felt about Hinoi Team you can read the post here.

Somewhere in the midst of this youtube was created. Which helped me get into Japanese music much more. I used to have to download everything which I absolutely hated. Youtube was a big part of how I got into Jrock as much as I said I did above. There was only maybe a 6 month period of being a Japanese music fan before youtube was created. Which makes some of this chronologically out of order. But not by much. And let me just say that my family could not stand that I liked Japanese music at all. They didn’t want to hear about it and was convinced it was simply a phase. And because of that my mom refused to buy me anything Japanese related. No movies, no music, and no language books. She didn’t buy me a Japanese CD until I was 16. Which is why I have hardly any Japanese CDs. And also why despite being a Japanese music fan for 7 years I can’t speak Japanese. I only know phrases and very basic Japanese. Because for some reason my mom still refuses to buy me language books. And about a year after I got into Japanese music I told my best friend at the time that I liked Japanese music and she literally laughed in my face. Which are the main reasons I feel slightly embarrassed for liking Japanese music and why I don’t tell people I like idol music or even about this blog. Just the negative way people would react, I’d rather not experience it.

Also, around the end of 2005 or early 2006, which was 1 year before I got into Morning Musume and Hello!Project, I was in love with Mini Moni. Which might not makes sense that I would like them and not even know or care about H!P, but it happened. I remember that sometime in around 2006 I randomly heard Strawberry Pie. I cannot for the life of me remember how or why, but I just did. I thought the song was so adorable that I fell in love with Mini Moni. I mean really in love. I watched all about them. Their TV appearances, their anime, Mini Moni The Documents, and even half of their movie. Back then I actually liked Mari the best. Which I think is funny. Which is why in the beginning of getting into Morning Musume I was a Mari fan. Anyway, I pretty much only listened to Mini Moni. I randomly heard that Mari was in Morning Musume, so I decided to download a song by them. That’s right I just downloaded Go Girl ~Koi no Victory~, and nothing else. I didn’t google the group or even watch the PV. I did like the song, I ended up putting it on a mix CD. But for some reason I just didn’t look up Morning Musume beyond that.

It wasn’t until 2007 that I finally got into Hello!Project, but it was by complete accident. And I got my first, well actually second, taste of it in 2006 when I went on youtube to search for a PV by Jrock singer Moon Kana, who at the time simply went by Kana. And when I tried to look her up the first result I got was Koi Kana by Kusumi Koharu. Can you imagine that if Kana switched her name to Moon Kana a few years earlier I probably wouldn’t be a H!P fan at all? Anyway, I was so intrigued by the video that I clicked on it, and it was literally love at first sight. I fell 100% in love with the song. To such a degree that I memorized all the gestures she did in the PV and would copy them while I watched the video, I even ended up learning the dance. This was around the time the song came out so it was June of 2006, or maybe a month or 2 afterwards. And even though I was so smitten with the song I didn’t look up Koharu at all. Instead I would just youtube her name every so often to see if she had a new song out. And I did that up until Happy was released. And by that time I was completely in love with all 3 of her singles that I decided to find out what this girl named Kusumi Koharu was all about. I quickly found out she was part of Morning Musume. And by then I actually cared, so I looked up Morning Musume. I found out that Kanashimi Twilight was their most recent single and listened to it. I absolutely loved everything about it. It was happy and it was amazing. I then went on a  myspace group for Momusu to learn about the members. The group showed promo pics of each girl in their Kanashimi Twilight outfits with their names under it. I remember just sitting there, closing my eyes and repeating their names over and over until I could remember every single name and put each face to the name. I remember that I wanted to follow these girls because they were all very close to my age. And because of that I became instantly drawn to Koharu and Aika, because Koharu was my age and Aika was only 1 year younger. And when I first got into Morning Musume I used to read a certain blog everyday, it’s where I got all my news from before I discovered Hello-Online. The blog is called Hello Non-Pro Hour. It was a big inspiration for me as it was one of the reasons I decided to start my own blog. The blog went down a couple months before I started my own blog, and later one of the writers, Gaki, moved on to Pure Idol Heart. Which is a big reason I support Pure Idol Heart so much. But apparently Hello Non-Pro Hour has been making posts again, well a few months ago they did, which I was completely unaware of until I googled the site just now for this post because I couldn’t remember the blog’s name. 

So, I was so inspired that I decided to make a blog. And Janakya Mottainai was born, but it wasn’t really the JM you know today. When I first started my blog I wasn’t the avid idol fan that I am today. I was actually mainly a Morning Musume and Buono fan. (Obviously I was a Buono fan since I named my blog after one of their songs.) I only had minimal interest and knowledge about Berryz Koubou, C-ute, and past groups. I was a casual fan of theirs. Where I heard some music, but not all. My main focus and attention went on Morning Musume. And like I’ve said on my blog before, when I started JM I didn’t even know all of Berryz Koubou and C-ute’s names yet. It was just that when I made JM I wanted to feature all of H!P on my blog, so I did despite not being an expert on most of H!P yet and because I felt people wanted to read about all of H!P and not just Buono and Morning Musume. So, I featured them from day one and learned everything about them on the fly and of course as I blogged I found out a lot more about them just by following them extremely closely. Obviously since then, I have now learned nearly everything there is to know about past and present H!P. Their music, songs, concerts, and members themselves. And I owe all of that to my blog. Because since day one I’ve always tried to give readers what they wanted and to make the best blog possible. If it wasn’t for that drive to please everyone and myself, I probably wouldn’t be the huge H!P fan and idol fan I am now.
But that’s not the only reason why JM is different today. Since a majority of my readers haven’t been reading my blog since day one they might be surprised to know how clustered, unorganized, and pretty much unsure of what it was, JM was back then. Despite the fact that I wanted it to be a Jpop blog I had posts dedicated to H!P, Jpop, and Jrock. Early on I discovered that wasn’t going to work and ended up dropping Jpop and Jrock all together. Which helped fuel my love and passion for H!P. And that’s pretty much it. Every step of the way in my H!P fandom after that has been detailed in my blog. If you want to know further you can check out past posts.

But the way I got into JE is another story all together. And believe it or not, again, it was by an accident. Being a fan of Hello!Project I knew that Johnny’s existed. Especially since I was a fan when Arihara Kanna was caught with Johnny’s Junior Hashimoto Ryosuke. And I was also around for Natsuyaki Miyabi’s scandal that was allegedly with Hey! Say! JUMP member Inoo Kei. (Can I just say I doubt it was Inoo. Mostly because if there’s one JE member that is legitimately gay, I’m like 80% sure it’s Inoo. XD Which could be an offensive statement to Inoo fans, or anyone reading this really, but look at the way he carries himself. You can’t pretend you haven’t thought that at least once yourself.) But at the time I had absolutely no idea who either person was. I remember looking up both guys and saying how each girl could do better. But even though I knew they existed I never listened to them or really knew what they were all about. That is until I decided to join a dubbing group. Let me first off start by saying, I love dubbing groups and I love group dubbing. Though I honestly haven’t been in one in a while. The last one I was in had me record 3 songs and then they were just never released and I was removed from the group with zero warning. A lot of people are ok with dubbing as long as the dubbers can actually sing. Which I don’t agree with and I think is completely unfair. I’ve personally been spreading my medicore, or teribble depending on who you ask, voice to the masses over the years. I absolutely could care less what people think of my voice or me for it. I love idol music, so of course I love singing idol music. It’s not fair that only people with amazing voices should be allowed to sing. People feel the same way about karaoke. But screw that, I love to sing and I’m not going to let my lack of ability stop me. And if people don’t like it, don’t listen to group dubs. Because there are only a handful of dubbers that can actually sing.

Ok, that was extremely off topic, but it makes me angry that people feel that way. So, I joined this group. Which I won’t name because, what am I their promoter? And besides that I’m not active there anymore and never really was. I joined the group and was put into my group. We actually covered 2 NEWS songs, Cherish and Ai no Matador, and I wasn’t really aware at the time, and didn’t care because I was more focused on learning the song than whether it was a good song or who it was by. Since I was placed into this group I decided to listen to some of their past releases. They did a cover of Weeeeek and this was back when idol agencies didn’t really crack down on copyright as much as they do now, and group dubs could post their group dubs over videos a lot more, and have youtube channels of them. Which you don’t see as often anymore. This group covered Weeeeek and I thought that they did such a good job that I fell in love with the song. (I also discovered Kuchibiru Kara Romantica that way as well.) I fell in love with it so much that I had to hear the original. So, I watched the PV and that was it. With just one listen I was absolutely in love with them. I told one of the girls from the dub group that I was friends with at the time that I was watching the PV and that the group seemed to be really good. So, she of course asked which member I liked. I googled and it and it turned out to Ryo. She then proceeded to tell me I shouldn’t become a fan of his because of how much of a jerk he was. Good times. XD
I actually did come into contact with JE 2 times before, but I was completely unaware of it at the time. Both times were in 2007. The first time was when I was talking to a friend I made through myspace. We mainly used to fangirl over Miyavi together, but we occasionally talked about regular Jpop too. And because of that she knew that I was a huge Tamaki Nami fan, so she sent me a news clip that talked about the new stage play that Nami was in, a Japanese version of High School musical. Along with Tamaki Nami the stage play also starred Koyama Keiichiro, but at the time I had no idea who he or NEWS was. And my only response to her was that I didn’t even like High School Musical but really wanted to see it because Nami was in it. And I also remember clearly saying to her that the random guy that kisses Nami is hideous. To which she said, “I think he’s cute.” Look how much sooner I would have been a NEWS fan if that was Ryo-chan instead of Kei-chan in the play. The second time was when I watched the movie Boku wa Imouto ni Koi o Suru which starred Matsumoto Jun. I had already seen the OVA because I found it randomly online and just had to see it because it was about incest which I found to be so odd and laughable. And once I found out they made a moive about it I just had to see the ridiculousness in live action. So, I watched the movie shortly after it was released. Well, I didn’t actually watch the whole thing. I watched half of it because it was terrible. And I actually thought the main actor, which was MatsuJun, was hideous. And rightfully so, because he didn’t really look that good in the movie. And I was more excited that Komatsu Ayaka from PGSM was in it. And finding out who the cute classmate was. Which was Hiraoka Yuta, who I still love today.

Shortly after discovering NEWS I completely engulfed myself in them. I started with their most recent single, which was Summer Time. I also watched their concerts to find out what music was good and watched anything with them I could get my hands on. So, for a good 6 months I listened to nothing but NEWS, well within Johnny’s anyway. It wasn’t until I watched the Johnny’s Countdown concert for that year that I was exposed to the other Johnny’s groups. Which I actually didn’t care about, or even plan on getting into other groups, I was just watching the concert for NEWS and NEWS alone.

But of course that’s not what happened, and I discovered another group too, completely by accident. I was watching the Johnny’s Countdown concert for 2008 and heard a song I liked. I had absolutely no idea who the group was or what the song was called, I just remember thinking, “Oh, I like that song about cherries.” And I literally googled Johnny’s song cherries. Obviously that song turned out to be Mayonaka no Shadow Boy by Hey! Say! JUMP, and it obviously wasn’t about cherries. So, shortly after that I started to get into HSJ. On my blog I did some NEWS related posts in 2008. But after the Johnny’s Countdown I decided to cover Johnny’s a lot more and started covering all the groups despite only being a fan of NEWS and HSJ. Ironically, that hasn’t really changed. I am still mainly a NEWS and HSJ fan, but I do know a lot more about the other Johnny’s groups than I did back then. Also, every step of the way in my JE fandom after that has been detailed in my blog. And you can see how much better my writing about JE has gotten as I started to know more about each group.

Random note, I realize that I wrote twice as much about JE as I did about H!P. The reason for that is I’ve been into and blogging about H!P a lot longer then JE. My blog has pretty much tracked my H!P fandom extremely closely. I have never really gotten a chance to write about how I got into JE before. Well, until now that is.

Shortly after adding Johnny’s to my blog I became more aware that AKB48 existed. As an idol fan I knew they existed and listened to their songs because they were similar to H!P. But since I was an H!P fan I saw no point in really getting into them since at the time H!P was pretty much all I wanted and was interested in. Also, I thought the girls of AKB48 weren’t really cute or appealing. But shortly after that I saw a few of the blog that I read featuring AKB48. So, I became interested in them and decided to listen to their newest single, 10nen Zakura, and became hooked. A couple months after that I turned Janakya Mottainai into 100% an idol blog. But all that meant was that I would feature H!P, JE, and AKB48. Hardly an idol blog really. Since then I have started featuring more idol groups, but only the idol groups I genuinely like. I have felt pressured at times to cover all idol groups even groups I’m not a fan of just to gain more readers and to make my blog a mecca of idol groups and coverage. But I absolutely will not do that. I think my writing and blog as a whole would suffer if I started covering groups I don’t like just because they fall into the idol category. Which is why I might not be covering your favorite idol group. The best example of this is Tokyo Girl’s Style. I just don’t see anything spectacular about them to became a fan of theirs.

I think that’s pretty much it. My 7 year history of Japanese music as best as I can remember. And as short as I could make it while still getting all the main details out. If there’s anything else you would possibly want to know that I haven’t mentioned here, feel free to ask. And I would also love to hear how everyone else started to listen to Japanese music.

K-Ft and company release new PV

A few days ago the full PV for Kis-My-Ft2’s 2nd  single, We Never Give Up, was released.

After watching the PV preview of for this song I was pretty munc convinced I was going to hate this PV. But after watching the full version I’m surprised by how much I actually like it. The PV is set that Kisumai are literally snowed in some random frozen tundra. And a majority of the PV follows that. They are several scenes where they showcase the snow covering the inside of their, for lack of better words, house. And also random scenes with them dancing and running in the snow. Which is a great way to get frostbite. I actually really like the snow scenes because the lighting is absolutely gorgeous. It’s this very dimly light snow lighting effect. And it gives the PV this very faded, depressing, sort of defeated feel to it. Which works perfectly for the theme of this song.
But don’t fret if your not one for grey lighting, because the magical blowing triangle in the middle of the room can, at will, turn baren wasteland into a tropical paradise. Which is a little stupid, but they had to come up with some reason to switch lighting and I guess this is they best they came up with. I’m not really complaining though because the lighting during those scenes is really beautiful as well. I absolutely love when natural lighting is used for PVs. And while this doesn’t look like it’s legitimately natural lighting it does give the appearance of it, with just being slightly sharper. Switching from such dim lighting to such bright lighting adds a very beautiful contrast to the PV.

There is one aspect of this PV I find hilarious, and would probably care more about it if I was a bigger Kisumai fan. And that aspect is: I have never seen members so obviously pushed in a Johnny’s PV in my entire life. In this PV the absolutely the only members you actually see are Taisuke, Yuta, and Hiromitsu. And not even the usual fan complain that their member isn’t show as much as the most popular member. No, I mean the other 4 members are shoved in the background the entire PV and don’t even get close-up shots. They are completely treated as backup dancers. The main 3 have 2 different outfits with a bunch of accessories. Bow ties, regular ties, gloves, vests, and amazing jackets. While the back 4 wear the same button up shirts the entire PV. The only time you can see them up close is if it’s during a group shot or all 4 of them at once. And I have to say it’s a little ridiculous. I’m trying to think of ever Johnny’s PV that I’ve ever seen to see if something like this has happened before, and I honestly can’t think of one. There is always a member, or members, who will get slightly more screen time then the rest because of popularity. But that’s it slightly more screen time, not all the screen time. In Hey! Say! JUMP’s Hitomi no Screen only Ryosuke got solo lines. However, the other 9 members were still featured a lot in the PV.

Kisumai are trapped in the snow.

And it that wasn’t clear enough perhaps this will help.

Hiro keeps trying to make these “sexy” faces, but it doesn’t really work when you look like a troll. Nice outfit though.

I like this oufit too. And am I the only who noticed that for some reason Yuta looks constantly angry.

Behold, the magical weather changing triangle.

Gorgeous set.

But for some reason it still reminds me of Arashi’s To Be Free set. And they aren’t even that similar.

I like this dance, there are a lot of very sharp and precise moves.

I’m starting to really get used to this hair on Taisuke.

Cute.

That’s funny, I though Kisumai only had 3 members.

Lol.

Yeah, he’s seriously trying way too hard.

Horrible move.

Hiro kinda looks like he’s having a seizure here.

Is the reason Hiro is so popular because of how weird he is? I’m starting to like him for that very reason. XD

Stupid face.

Compared to Hiro is seems like no one else is really trying on their close-ups.

This looks like a Russ-K ad.

Just completely shoved to the back. They aren’t even hiding the fact.

Cute dance move.

This is the Winter Time.

I still prefer Summer Time though.

Wink!

This is probably the most ridiculous move I’ve ever seen in an idol dance.

It was so close to not having them in roller skates.

Nice fake flowers.

But it reminds me of Arashi’s One Love PV.

KAT-TUN gives birth to a boring PV

The full PV for KAT-TUN’s upcoming single, Birth, was revealed.

On paper a PV filmed nearly entirely on a roof sounds like the makings of an epic PV. And you’re right it does, but only sometimes. The rooftop scenes in KAT-TUN’s Rescue and Change UR World PVs were great. They added a very entertaining element to their PVs. In the Change UR World PV they were the best scenes, they were maybe even a bit awe inspiring. But the roof scenes in the Birth PV didn’t play out so well. When the PV starts we find the members of KAT-TUN randomly on top of a roof. Some of them are laying done, and some of them are angrily or sitting down aloofly. But redgardless of their positions they look completely out of place, as people usually do when they are on top of buildings. But don’t be bored by the PV just yet, this is also where we see the underline story of the PV. Next to each member is a mysterious silver box. Which they hold onto fro the entire PV yet never explain. How mysterious. Expect not really it actually makes me really angry that they don’t actually explain the magic box. First of the box itself reminds me of the box that random child was holding in the Change UR World PV. What did the Change UR World director work on this PV as well? The best guess I have for the magic box is that KAT-TUN themselves are in the box. As the close-up shoes show the members standing by cheap LED cubes, for no reason I might add. The close-up scenes have absolutely no connection to the PV at all. It’s just one minute they are on the roof and the next they are in what could be mistaken for a club setting.
And if this PV riveting enough, the rest of the transition shots or space filler shots are filled with the members running or a quick overview of the city.
There are exactly 2 things I like in this PV. The scenes were the members are superimposed onto buildings, because the CG is done incredibly well. It looks like they spent a lot of money on those scenes. And I like the dance scenes. Not so much because the dance is spectacular because it’s not. But because I like the lighting during the dance scenes.

Overhead shots of Tokyo! That’s exactly what I want to see while I’m watching a KAT-TUN PV.

Sleeping Kame is adorable.

But yet another PV with a magic box they don’t explain.

All the other members looked inconvenienced by being randomly put on the roof. Maru, however, ends up looking emo.

Taguchi shaved his head on the sides, I just noticed that now. I don’t like it.

Ueda is trying to look so serious here.

Love Koki.

Quick, don’t forget to take your magic box!

Oh good, more shots of the city.

Why in the world do I want to see Kame from the angle? To showcase his outfit more? That is a nice jacket though. XD

WTF did Koki do to his hair? It almost looks like the hair Ryosuke had in the Mayonaka no Shadow Boy PV, except not done as well.

They gave Ueda fake tattoos, why? Or it that a shirt? XD

Cute.

LED cubes for no reason.

Epic jump.

It’s hilarious that even without hair Ueda still looks girly.

Kame looking fine as usual.

This effect is done so seamlessly that it’s perfect.

However, it will always remind me of NEWS’s Cherish PV.

Taguchi looks good here.

WTF is he doing?

Love the flashing lights here.

Lol at his intrigued face.

Right after the boxes flash it then goes to the scenes with them next to the cubes. That has to mean they are trapped in the boxes.

Especially since it flashes between the cubes and pictures of buildings.

NYC announce new single

It was announced recently that NYC will be releasing their 4th single. (Or 5th if you count the NYC Boys and Nakayama Yuma w/B.I. Shadow single, which I don’t) This single will be their first double A-side release. The first song NYC song is titled Wonderful Cupid, and the second song will be a Nakayama Yuma solo single titled Garasu no Mahou. This double A-side single will be released on January 4th.

I think it’s interesting to see that Yuma is getting his own solo single basically. It also shows just how much Johnny’s is pushing him. I’m not really the biggest Yuma fan but he is a good singer, and I say good for him. It seems like after Nakayama Yuma/w B.I. Shadow didn’t work out as well as JE had hoped they just awkwardly made NYC a permanent group. I would say that this testing the waters for a Yuma solo career, but that’s never going to happen. I honestly can’t remember the last solo artist JE had. I think it was Matchy. That just shows how long ago it was. Yeah, I guess you can now add Jin and Yamapi to the ranks of solo artist, but they aren’t true solo artists. In the sense that from day one they weren’t solo. They obviously are using their groups as a launching point. I honestly don’t see where Yuma’s future is going. If they wanted him to be in a legit group why not debut him in a group made of random Juniors? Like Hey! Say! JUMP was. Right now it honestly seems like they have no idea what to do with him. He’s popular enough to be put in a group but too many groups have debuted lately. And besides that it seems 100% that A.B.C-Z (or I should say A.B.C.-xy)  is going to debut next. Which is fine with me, I’d rather see impression king Kawai Fumito debut over Nakayama Yuma anyday.

I should probably steer this post back on topic now, with a little less Yuma and a little more NYC. I like NYC and I’m always excited for their releases. Wonderful Cupid seems like it’s going to be just as cutesy as their previous releases. And it seems like this release is going to have a Valentine’s Day theme, given the title of the song and it being released so close to Valentine’s Day. But Valentine’s Day is more of a girls holiday in Japan. Unless they make a song about accepting some girl’s confession they should probably make a song around White Day instead.

Kis-My-Ft2-We Never Give Up PV preview

ZIP recently aired a short PV preview for Kis-My-Ft2’s 2nd single, We Never Give Up.

Most of this video is about their debut and making of the PV, so we only see about 30-40 seconds of the PV itself. And in that short amount of time I can already hate it. For 1 it’s completely generic and featured them on roller skates yet again. Which I kinda wish they would just drop already. But the main reason I don’t like what I see in the preview is because it looks too much like past Johnny’s PVs. The PV preview shows Kisumai running in the snow which makes me immediately think of the random running scenes in NEWS’s Summer Time PV. And the dancing in the snow is the same as when NEWS danced in the rain in their Taiyou no Naminda PV. And the set itself reminds me a lot of the set for Arashi’s Too Be Free PV. Just the whole color scheme of it. Obviously in To Be Free they had dirt instead of an actual floor.

Sexy Zone aren’t sexy and I know it

Recently the debut PV for Sexy Zone’s debut single, Sexy Zone, was released. And let me just say I had to do some searching to find this PV. The things I do for you dear readers. XD

After I saw the PV preview for this single I was expecting this PV to be extremely simple. However, this PV surprised me as there are more elements going on in this PV then I expected. The PV is still fairly simply, mostly because Johnny’s never spends the big bucks on debut PVs. He hardly ever spends big bucks on PVs in general. What I find most surprising is despite the fact that most of the members of Sexy Zone are extremely young, the PV has an overall mature and serious feel to it. Well, about as serious as you can be while dancing in front of a magical floating castle. But this PV could be a lot more immature then it is. They could have gone the NYC way an popped out a PV like Yume no Tamago. But I guess they are trying to get fans to get past their ages and focus on their music. Which I myself am having a hard time with, despite the fact that I do like nearly all of the songs on their debut single. I just can’t really get into Sexy Zone as a group. It’s a mixture of age and looks. I just can’t see myself becoming a legit fan of them. Perhaps a guilty pleasure.
Anyway, the PV is a pretty standard close-up and dance shots video. But I think it’s really nice to look at. Both sets are nice and the outfits aren’t bad. But what really wins me over with this PV is the lighting. It’s so incredibly bright that it makes the PV super clear and vibrant. It really makes the small touches of color really pop. But there is one thing about the PV that bothers me, the roses. I still don’t get why they are holding them throughout the PV. It kinds of annoys me.

Super intense close-up of Shori. Are they trying to tell us he’s going to be the face of Sexy Zone? Which honestly wouldn’t make sense. Kento and Fuma are 100 times more popular from B.I. Shadow.

I love how serious these face montage scenes are supposed to be.

Kento looks a lot better than the last time I saw him. But it seems like once he ages a couple more years he’ll be hot.

No, they are definitely pushing So to the front. I just can’t imagine why.

It’s castle in the sky. Seriously?

Shori almost looks like he could be cute. Let’s see in 4 years. XD

Kento is only cute sometimes. He’s about a 5 or so.

Fuma is kinda cute, until he opens his mouth. He just looks stupid.

Tell me he doesn’t look at least 15% better.

Marius is about as goodlooking as an 11 can be. I feel like the government should be busting through my doors just for watching him. Lol. But without sounding creepy, it seems like he will realy grow into his look. By 16 or so he’ll probably be extremely fine. But that’s probably because of my weird thing I have for half Japanese guys. XD

Sadly, So could be 13 or 113, but that kid is just not attractive at all.

 Shori keeps trying to make these alluring faces, and it’s just not working for him.

That one Junior all the way in the back looks like he might be Anderson Casey. But that’s probably wishful thinking.

Marius always looks like he’s in pain during his close-ups. It’s hilarious.

Kento is on the cusp od being gorgeous. But he kinda looks like a rabbit.

Ok, he seriously looks like he’s out to cry.

This dance just completely sucks.

Um…what?

Yeah, just throw that rose.

But it reminds me far too much of Tuxedo Kamen.

I love the scenes where they are in that glass box.

Ok, Kento looks cute here. XD

Everyone use your roses as mics now, for some reason.

Kento looks the best here. Probably because he’s making super intense face.

Yeah, makes the Juniors do all the flips.

Lol.

Saw that coming a mile away.

Jin announces new Japanese single

Former KAT-TUN member, and currently artist trying to break into the US, Akanishi Jin announced he will be releasing a new single in Japan. The single is titled Seasons and will be released on December 28th.

I am actually really surprised that Jin is releasing another Japanese single so quickly. And it honestly doesn’t make sense to me. Test Drive was just released on November 8th, shouldn’t he be in the US trying to promote his single? He should be whoring himself to US radio stations and MTV. He should be trying to get the word out about himself and trying to create a buzz. Since right now no one in the US knows he exists. It seems a little premature for him to release something in Japan again. And it just shows that Johnny’s doesn’t really have faith that he’ll succeed, or he just doesn’t know how to manage his artists. That or JE still has the main control over his career. Which is probably exactly what’s going on. I know JE wants to suck as much money as possible from his Japanese fans while they still can, but honestly, it’s only going to hurt Jin in the long run.

The reason why Jin is still so unknown in the US is because his record label isn’t promoting him at all. And going to Japan for a month or more isn’t going to help his US career one bit. And during his fan event for the single the Japanese fans are going to get a preview of his upcoming US album. His Japanese fans are going to get a preview of his US album. I had to repeat the sentense just so you could take that information in twice. So, you’ll see that it still makes zero sense the second time you hear it. I’m sorry, correct me if I’m wrong, but I thought his US album was going to be sold and marketed to the US and not Japan. Wouldn’t it make a lot more sense to do this kind of album preview for US fans? And I don’t know, maybe invite some media and try to get featured on MTV, E, Access Hollywood, or something. Why doesn’t he hang out with his “new friend” Justin Beiber so TMZ can run the picture and say, “who’s the random Asian guy hanging out with the Beibs?” Seriously, that would help his career ten fold. And 100% more than a Japanese single would. I know that Johnny’s doesn’t want to reglect the Japanese fanbase too much, since that’s what Jin has to fall back on, but he seriously needs to. And the Japanese fans need to suck it up. I’m sure they would rather have Jin become an international celebrity to tote around to the world as being a Japanese person the world loves, than to have him fail in the US to release one more single in Japan. Seriously, whoever is managing his career isn’t doing a good enough job. I though they knew what they were doing when they had him collab with Jason Derulo. But they didn’t use that at all. Why didn’t they have Jason go on the radio or TV and promote the single? I’m sure they could have paid him to, just like they paid him be featured in his US debut single. And then they have him meet up with, and possibly, collab with Justin Beiber. Which is just sad, because Jin is too old to. It’s fine when Usher does it because he discovered him, or signed him, or something along those lines. Then they also have him meet Sean Kingston who is completely irrelevant. His last hit was 2 years ago! Which was actually a really catchy song, but that’s besides the point.

I wish I could just have 5 minutes with either Jin or whoever is in charge of his career, because they aren’t doing enough. There have been tons of US artists who’s debut single was a giantic hit. Warner needs to work on getting better artists to collab with. Jin already said he likes Young Money, so setup a collab with Lil Wayne. Lil Wayne has been in something like 80 or 100 collaborations. And he will seriously collab with anyone. I mean anyone, he just collabed with Joe Jonas. No seriously he did, click here if you care. Now, if he will be featured in a Jonas Brother’s solo song, he’d be featured in a Jin song. And a Jin and Lil Wayne collaboration would probably be the hottest thing ever.

Anyway, sorry for the rant. But things like this get me so frustrated. I’ve seen tons of Asian artists fail in the US for no other reason but poor management.

KAT-TUN-Birth PV preview

A short PV preview was released for KAT-TUN’s upcoming new single, Birth. And way I saw short, I mean extremely short. The PV preview only lasts for about 20 seconds. So, we can most likely be expecting another in a day or so.

Since the PV preview is so short we hardly get a feel for the PV. So, far all we can see is that is features KAT-TUN on top of buildings. And it also features KAT-TUN’s faces superimposed on skyscrapers. Which immediately reminds me of NEWS’s Cherish PV. But the CG in the Birth PV is significantly better than in the Cherish PV. We also get extremely short close-ups of most of the members. Which is just long enough to see that Kame and Koki look pretty fine in this PV. And that’s honestly about it. The rest of the preview is full of filler shots of the overview of the city.

Here’s the preview skip to 1:30 to see it. I’m sorry about it being in such low quality.

Kis-My-Ft2-We Never Give Up preview

A few days ago the full radio rip for Kis-My-Ft2’s upcoming seconds single, We Never Give Up, was released.

I have said many, many times before on this blog that I’m not really a Kisumai fan. But when I first heard Everybody Go on Shounen Club I thought it was amazing, I even hoped it would be their first single. Which obviosuly it was, but that was announced about 2 months after the Shounen Club performance. It was the type of song that could make me become a Kisumai fan. So, I took this second single as pretty much the defining moment for me, to see it it would push me over the edge to the fan side. Sadly, I don’t really think this song is strong enough to do that. On the first listen this song sounds like Everybody Go part 2. Both songs have the exact same vibe and have nearly identical music. It’s sort of this soft rock type of music that is so soft in the beginning and middle of the song it’s almost unnoticeable. And it only really picks up in the chorus, but even then it’s only 1 degree higher. (Ok, degree is NOT the correct word, but what do I look like a composer? I’m sure you get what I mean.) Which is the exact same format of Everybody Go. Seriously listen to both songs back to back, they sound nearly the same. Except Everybody Go uses more synthesizer, which gives it a slightly heavier almost dance beat. But We Never Give Up still uses plenty of synthesizer througout the song.
Since both songs are so similar I don’t actually hate We Never Give Up. The song is catchy, it’s maybe a 5/10. But I’m disappointed by how lazy and unoriginal the arrangement of the song feels. Kisumai can, and has, done better. It seems after their debut was announced they completely threw their original sound out the window for what would appeal to the masses. Which is really a shame, because their songs as Juniors were a lot better.

Sexy Zone-Sexy Zone PV preview

Over the past weeks PV previews for Sexy Zone’s sefl titled debut single have been released. The full audio for this song was also released two days ago. However, it has since disappeared from the internet. No, it seriously has. I cannot find one place to either stream or download the song. You have no idea how angry/annoyed that makes me. This is why JE fans annoy me sometimes. They love to keep things like mp3 files and scans in private locked LJ posts. While H!P fans, or any other female idol group fans, don’t make you do backflips for anything. But that’s not what this post is about.

So, obviously I can only comment on the PV preview. The PV seems to be pretty simple, which is to be expected for a Johnny’s debut PV. I can’t really think of one debut PV that was over the top spectacular. Kisumai’s came close, but even that could have been better. The PV is pretty much the standard close-up and dance shot format. But I think the set is really pretty. Or I did think the set was pretty. It’s a very crisp white set. With the members on top of a castle and for some reason there’s a disco ball smack dab in the center. But this is Johnny’s they are always gaudy. The whole reason I stopped liking the set is because it’s a castle. As if I didn’t forget that Marius is 11 years old, they had to parade him on top of a castle. Pretty much the symbol of childhood. So, that ended up making me feel a little bit creepy.
Beyond that there’s nothing else really going on the PV. They stand by a wall and sing, put a colorful jacket over their outfit to make it appear as if they are wearing 2 different outfits, and stand in this random glass box. Also for most of the PV they hold roses for no apparent reason. But they’ve been doing that since their group was announced. I’m still not sure what that’s all about.

Kis-My-Ft2 to release new single

It was recently announced that Johnny’s most recent debuted group, until Sexy Zone, Kis-My-Ft2 will be releasing their second single. The single is entitled We Never Give Up and will be released on December 14th.

Johnny’s seems to really be pushing out the singles this year. I remember when I had to wait 6 months between releases. Now, they are being released every 3 months. Well, maybe it’s only NEWS and Hey! Say! JUMP I had to wait for.
I can’t say I’m the biggest Kisumai fan in the world, but I can honestly say I loved every minute of Everybody Go. So, I’m curious to see what kind of song they will release next. I’m actually really hoping for a rock song, since they are best known for them. Give me a song like FIRE BEAT or Hair and I’ll be happy. Mostly because they are the only other Kisumai songs I’ve actually heard. But also because both of those songs are amazing.

KAT-TUN-Birth radio rip

The full radio rip for KAT-TUN’s upcoming new single, Birth, was released a few days ago.

The full radio rip isn’t really all that different than the preview of the song we heard about a week ago. Besides that we now know that Kame has solos at both the beginning and end of the song, the song sounds pretty much exactly the same. The second half of the song sounds exactly the same, which is a little sad. I was waiting fro some grand high notes. I mean, it’s a Kame centered song let’s hear some of his amazing high note. I was also expecting at least 1 other member to get a solo line. But obviously that doesn’t happen. I actually think at about 2:21 it sounds like Ueda is sining about 3 words solo. But at the same time it also sounds like it could be Kame.
I gotta say the song is really growing on me. Even more than the last time I hear it. After hearing the radip rip about 6 times now, I’m starting to really be a fan of it. Especially the chorus, it’s so catchy. I actually think it’s a much better song than Run For You and White.

Arashi’s puzzling new PV

The full PV for Arashi’s upcoming new single, Meikyuu Love Song, has been released.

This PV is hands down of Arashi’s best PVs in a while. I haven’t enjoyed a Arashi PV this much since Troublemaker was released. I do prefer the sillier more fun Arashi. As opposed to the super serious PVs they’ve been releasing lately which is usually nothing more than them just standing there. But this PV actually has something going on, and because of that it’s fantastic. The PV is basically JE’s take on Jumanji, but just with a far lower budget and no waiting in the jungle. The PV’s story is Arashi is on this life size game board, playing a life size game. Rolling the dice and doing whatever the game tells them to do. Which makes the PV completely fun and unserious.
Visually I think the PV is great. The set is really beautiful and well made. The dark lighting gives it a dark slightly creepy feel. Which is mostly likely what they were going for so close to Halloween. I also think the guys are styled really well. I absolutely love their old fashioned looking jackets.
There is one aspect of the PV that doesn’t make sense to me. Why is the set a game board? Meikyuu translates to labyrinth. And in the beginning of the PV it says the adventures of Puzzle Storm. Yet, the main set is a giant game board with giant dice. And random puzzle pieces thrown around. I don’t know about you, but I’ve never used dice while doing a puzzle, or walking through a labyrinth. A labyrinth would have been a better theme anyway. Having Arashi wander aimlessly through the maze, fighting monsters along the way before they finally become the Goblin Kings. And they would still have enough time to breakout into their own rendition of Magic Dance.

The board itself is a puzzle? That makes no sense. XD

The set is beautiful.

Woah, is that the clock from the Monster PV?

Love Ohno’s jacket.

Nino overacting. XD

Aiba trying to look cool.

Puzzle Storm sounds awkward, they should have kept their name in Japanese.

I love Sho’s whole outfit. XD

This isn’t how a board game works. Only 1 person is supposed to move.

Am I the only one annoyed that Nino makes this face at least once in every single PV he’s in? It doesn’t show deep emotion, it just makes you looks stupid.

I see he’s getting ready to pet the poodle, that is his hair.

It looks like Aiba is wearing the Gryffindor emblem on his shirt. That’s hilarious.

OMG, no way! We walked 6 places!

Lol.

Nice face MatsuJun.

I love that they are sitting on the dice, it adds a nice effect.

What do playing cards have to do with anything?

Fight!

Finish him!

Everyone overreact now!

This hair does nothing for you Nino. You’re practically a 10, but certainly not with this hair.

I have to admit, MatsuJun does look pretty cute in this PV.

Priceless faces.

What? Lol.

Cute.

Lol. Aiba is always the most entertaining.

Nino looks so adorable here, but it’s hard to look past all that hair. Lol.

I don’t get why they fell over.

Nya!

Now sing perfectly still.

I don’t even know what’s going on anymore.

Squat? For what reason? XD

So it’s imaginary tea.

This PV just keeps getting better.

Adorable.

However, the Ninos dissaprove.

So, that means they win?

Apparently so. XD

Lol.

Hooray.

Would telling the truth be so awful?

Lying, absolutely everyone in the world does it. Some people on a daily basis. And if they tell you otherwise, well then it’s pretty obvious that they’re lying. However, there are certain people in this world that if they lie to you, you feel a high level of betrayal. When it comes to people you don’t know, it’s usually done by politicians or bankers. But I’m going to my cards on the table and say I feel just as betrayed when my favorite idol lies to me. Obviously idols tell tons of white lies on a daily basis. Mostly for the fan’s benefit to enhance the idol fantasy or overall experience. And most fans don’t mind. They’ll just eat up whatever their idol says. However, I think we can all agree that everyone hates the lies about graduating. If idols are leaving, or withdrawing, anyway, aren’t us fans at least entitled to an honest reason? Other then the vauge I need to continue my studies or the workload was too much.

The worst part is when the lie is so blatantly in your face obvious. Like saying you want to graduate to become a model, but then turn around and join Dream Morning Musume. But there’s no point in talking about past occurrences when there are fresh ones to complain about.

Like with Nishikido Ryo.

When Ryo announced his withdrawal from NEWS I was too devestated to think clearly let alone feel angry about it. But after I thought about it for a bit, it made absolutely zero sense. Being in 2 groups is too hard? First of all, since when? You’ve been doing it for 8 years now. And second of all, how in the world does Buono even exist then? I thought poor Ryo-chan was overworked because he had both NEWS and Kanjani8, he’s in dramas, and is extremely popular therefore in high demand. But then I started to think about the girls of Buono. If anyone is overworked it’s them. But for the sake of comparison let’s just say Suzuki Airi is extremely overworked. Buono has been around for 4 years, which is only half the spand of Kanjani8, and yet Airi is about 1,000 times more overworked.
In 2011 Airi was in 6 different concert tours. Hello!Project’s summer and winter concerts, C-ute’s spring concerts, C-ute’s and Berryz Koubou’s joint fall concert, and Buono’s winter and summer concerts. Airi was in 3 movies: Vampire Stories, Ousama Game, and Gomennasai. Released 2 DVDs: Kibun Tenkan and Natsu Karada. Released 2 photobooks: Meguru Haru and OASIS. Is on the show HelloPro!Time. (and Bijou Gaku technically, but it was only a couple months in 2011) Released 2 albums. A full C-ute album and a mini album with Buono. Released 8 singles. 3 with Buono, 3 with C-ute, 1 with C-ute and Berryz Koubou, and 1 with Mobekimasu. Not to mention the 2 digital singles as part of H!P cover song releases. She was also in a few magazine spreads.
Now, what has Ryo been up to this year that is too much for him to take? He released 4 singles. 4 with Kanjani8 and none with NEWS. He will be apart of exactly one concert tour this year, Kanjani8’s dome shows which haven’t even started yet. He’ll release 1 album with Kanjani8. He is in monthly magazine spreads as both NEWS and Kanjani8 in Myojo, Potato, Popolo, etc. He was in 1 drama, Zenkai Girl. He’s on 3 variety shows, all with Kanjani8 and none with NEWS: Boken Japan! Kanjani8 Map, Kanpani, and Jani-Ben.

All this really proves is that Airi deserves a medal. So how is it that a 17 year old girl can handle doing triple the work of a 26 year old man? It makes no sense. It’s pretty apparent that Ryo wanted out of NEWS for selfish reasons. Which is whatever, it’s his life. I honeslty would not have cared if he just said he didn’t want to be in NEWS anymore. Rather then pretending it’s because he’s too overworked. Because honestly he’s not. If NEWS was active at the same time, then possibly he would be. But since Kanjani8 was the only group active in 2011, how does that even make sense? And why wasn’t it too much for him in 2007 or 2008 when both groups were pretty active? Oh, the inconsistencies!

 Another noted liar is Maeda Yuuka.

Now, this isn’t really anything against her personally, it’s just a rant against the “continue my studies” excuse H!P girls have been using for years. And since Yuuka is the most recent person to use it, all my anger at everyone from the past is directed at her. For the time being of course. Because if she honestly would prefer to be a student over an idol, good for her. And if she truly doesn’t to, want not just plainly say it? She’s leaving the agency as well, so she now has zero ties to it. So, even if she says it’s becasue she finds wota to be disgusting, it won’t affect her. But the main reason they don’t honestly say it is because they still want to be idols or in the entertaiment industry, but just not in their group. Just like with Kusumi Koharu who’s now in Dream Morning Musume. Or Hayami Akari who is in the movie Cheerfully, and is in a comedy show. Which to me, honestly, it seems a bit vindictive.
Now, not being able to balance school life and idol life is absolutely 100% utter garbage. Johnny’s idols do it all the time. Johnny’s idols who are far more popular and would have a harder time of being treated as normal students. Koyama Keiichiro, Yamashita Tomohisa, and Inoo Kei are either curently going to or have graduated from Meiji University. Meiji is a pretty prestigious school. Which means most likely the work there is extremely difficult and there’s most likely a big work load. And if that’s still not good enough for you, what about Kato Shigeaki who graduated from law school? Do you realize just how difficult that is for a normal person, let alone for someone who is basically working full time? So, Shige can handle becoming a lawyer while still a NEWS member, but Yuuka can’t handle the entrance exams while in S/mileage? I find that incredibly hard to believe. For it to be true it would have to mean Johnny’s idol are super intelligent beings who never get tired. And H!P idols are frail, stupid little girls who dont know the meaning of time management. I find that incredibly hard to believe. Maybe there have been girls who legit can’t do it. But 6 or so girls have used this excuse. You’re telling me it’s true everytime? Give me a break.

 This whole post was extremely obvious, as EVERYONE knows the H!P “leave to continue my studies” reason is a complete lie. But I really needed to rant about this to get out all my pent-up frustration.