Thoughts on SDN48’s Makeoshimi Congratulation

I wanted this post to be a simple PV post, really I did. I figured like most of my PV review posts I’d write a little about it but not spoiling my full reaction until the full PV was out. But after watching the PV review, I couldn’t settle on just that.

After watching the PV preview I’m angry, literally angry. But not for the reason you might think. I’m angry because this song and PV are amazing. The song is cute. It’s typical idol music soft and sweet. So unlike what their past A-sides have been like. And the PV is just as adorable. The girls are wearing too cute for words school uniform looking outfits that look like something AKB48 would wear. And I’m wondering why in the world weren’t they releasing singles like this all along? I know SDN48 are supposed to be a mature adult themed group, but I prefer them when they are cute. And it works for them. Their version of Everyday Kachuusha was amazing. And Awajishima no Tamanegi is my favorite song by them. And I also have to wonder, would they be disbanding if this was their theme? Why was’t Aki-P thinking of this in the first place?

Doesn’t Aki-P try to do what other idol groups aren’t doing, and that’s why AKB48 is so successful in the first place? And doesn’t he also like to make some of the music about controversial societal matters like teen suicides caused my bullying, teenage sex, and even being a lesbian like in SKE48’s Kataomoi Finally PV? Then why did he have it so backwards with SDN48? SDN48 is toted as being this adult themed idol group, but am I the only one who took that  at face value and didn’t immediately think that meant being overly sexual? It didn’t really have to mean that, and  I think that’s 100% the reason that SDN48 wasn’t as successful or popular as they could have been. SDN48 was an adult group with adult members, I really wanted them to be an idol group who’s members just happened to be adults. And honestly that would have been enough. They would have been pushing boundaries and going against the social norm just by being over the normal “idol age.” And that would have gained them a lot of older female fans. And probably female fans in general would want to support them because they would see themselves in them. Making another group based on male fantasy perpetuates the fact that Aki-P only really cares about male fans. AKB48 and their sister groups may have a lot of teenage fans, but that’s basically accidental. In the sense that they really aren’t marketing to them all that much. Aside from lyrical content and the girls doing things in fashion, it’s mostly for male fans. (Excuse me if I’m forgetting some other ways they are marketed towards females.) It proves that female fans are indeed just gravy to add to the obviously male dominated fanbase. And it’s whatever, I normally don’t mind being in the minority. But this is one the rare occasion where catering to a female audience would have helped them in the long run.

And if SDN48 still needed a sexy flare to their image, they could have went for it while still having their core female fanbase remain. Because all they really needed to do was add a flare, a touch, a pinch, a small amount. They didn’t have to go for such an obvious sexy image. You absolutely do not need naked body silhouettes and bathtub scenes to be sexy. The phrase less is more is completely true. I’m not attracted to girls but I’m going to assume that showing minimal skin is just as alluring. It’s the tease, it’s the “will they or won’t they” aspect that would be tantalizing. I’ve watched a lot of shows on fashion and they all say the same thing, “less skin is sexier than more skin.” A dress that’s low cut in the back, an outfit that shows your stomach peeking through, a dress that only shows your shoulders, or a high slit that shows your legs. All of those are sexy while still remaining classy. And I’m not saying that SDN48 are classless or sleazy, because they obviously aren’t. I’m just saying you can be sexy another way. And as a female fan I was turned off of them for that reason.

Maybe it’s asking to much for a female idol group to market themselves to female fans. I mean, you don’t see JE making their groups more male friendly. But I just find the whole SDN48 disbanding thing a bit sad, because there was potential in there for them to be amazing and sell a lot. It just really feels like they were tossed aside without really getting a fighting chance.

Also, here’s the PV preview.

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.

SDN48 to release a 4th single

It was announced recently that SDN48 will be releasing their 4th single. The single is currently untitled and will be released on December 28th. This is also most likely SDN48’s final single, since their disbandment is on April 1st.

Now, when SND48’s disbandment was announced I didn’t blog about it at all. Because honestly, I don’t really care all that much. Mostly because I’m hardly a huge SDN48 fan. The only SND48 songs I really like are GAGAGA and Awajishima no Tamanegi. It is a little sad that they are disbanding before they really had a chance to succeed.
And to tell you the truth I wasn’t really expecting SDN48 to release another single. I understand they probably want to give the fans a proper goodbye while still squeezing as much money from them as possible. But at the same time, I also feel like why bother? They are obviously disbanding them because they are doing as well as they expected. So, why even bother giving them a final single. Obviously the agency has zero faith in them. If I was in SDN48 I would feel so hurt that they are not only disbanding my group, but also squeezing one more single out of us.

But the main reason I don’t see the point in this new single, is because I don’t actually believe that SDN48 is disbanding at all. I mean, we all know that Aki-P loves to mess with the fans. And them disbanding on April Fool’s Day just seems too perfect to me. It seems like this 4th single is just testing how much the fans will support SDN48. Basically saying if you want SDN48 to continue on, you should support them as if every single was their final one. Or something along those lines. I just refuse to believe their disbandment is legit. If is is legit, it just doesn’t make sense.