Sunday Blog Roundup: Goodbye SweetS, Hello…

Filed in Cult Of Pop 2.0

I’m coping with the news. I’m hoping that the last single will be good, at least. I’m eager to hear about who’s going to stick with school and who’s going to continue being an idol. I wonder if Bounceback can figure into any of this. Perhaps the last single? Please?

So. With all that said, this week’s favorite post is from Cute Cosplay Angels: the third part of his Kiri Sari series, the first two parts of which I mentioned last week.

Why this blog entry of all the blogging greatness available this week, you may ask? Well, with SweetS breaking up, I’m looking for new U15 eyecandy and I don’t want to think about disappointing career arcs or music label politics or…

Okay. You see, I’m vulnerable now. Vulnerable to the charms that Garo Aida specializes in photographing. Okay, not really. I look at most every other U15 model he uses – perhaps most notably Kobayashi Mao (why is there so much material of her out there?) – and wonder what the hell is the deal. I still do, truth be known.

But Kiri Sari is different. Very different. Let’s face it, Kiri Sari is just… ridiculously scrumptious.

Even scrum-diddly-umptious.


Yeah. Something like that.

So. Obviously, I’m still coping with the news. And thinking of buying some photobooks from Amazon Japan, if you catch my drift.

Of course, in our corner of the Jpop blogosphere, the news of SweetS breaking up is the big story of the week. Word first came from Santos at Idolizing St. Anna, who was there in person when the Penty Five made their announcement. Santos also reported on Koriki finally leaving Hinoi Team. (Maybe this means I’ll start listening to their singles again.) Among the bloggers reacting to these girl group news are some favorites of mine, each taking their own approach. Thea of Made in Paradise goes the Kubler-Ross method. k2c of k2c Blog takes a big-picture look at these changes. Sally of Made in Paradise considers leaving Jpop with SweetS’ passing. And bagofpeanuts of Koppie Dip!! takes the news in the context of other Jpop girl groups.

Besides SweetS shock, there’s a great deal of sharp criticism and insights from some very fine Jpop bloggers. At nitro.pop, recent Hello! Project convert (yes, I’ll keep calling her that because it delights me so) Sami pulls together some random thoughts on her new “addiction” (her word, not mine!). She makes some nice points – and I especially like the Berryz part. Meanwhile, Marlyjane of Fashionable Sound lays down the law on her critical stance as a Jpop blogger and provides a beautifully detailed look at Koda Kumi’s latest singles collection. Power reviewer usagi of the usagi incidents has her usual flurry of items considered, including Tsuchiya Anna’s “Slap That Naughty Body” single, and even looks back at Amuro Namie’s “Speed Star” PV, concluding quite succinctly, “I enjoy watching her hips. A lot.”

Amen to that, usagi. But have you seen Kiri Sari’s hips?

Jordi moves her blog to a new site and renames it Subliminal Beats, but it’s still the place to go for Rip Slyme fans! This week she provides a download of the m-flo collabaration with Teriyaki Boyz, “Paradise Baby”, and gives her usual killer analysis; she also looks inward and considers the possible developments in her Rip Slyme fandom. At HALCALI day by day, jariten provides a dazzlingly sharp look at why “Twinkle Star” did not do very well, which doesn’t make it hurt any less, but at least we know what happened…

At Channel Ai, Lainay concludes her Summer Shuffles overview with a look at this past year’s trio of units. She doesn’t get the sheer genius of Sexy Otanajan though the sheer weirdness of it was certainly crystal clear to her. This is the funniest of her shuffle overviews, and definitely worth a read – proving that bad creative ideas are the best friends of gifted critics. ikimasshoi has news of upcoming releases from Goto Maki and Viyuden. At Welcome to Nono-land, there is shock – shock I tell you! – at the discovery that Hello! Project still makes good music. Béné of Béné Blog gives an overview of Gatas (and was too struck by the news of SweetS to translate that post into English).

With even more H!P goodness, at Your Opinion Doesn’t Count, the J-Music Clip of the Week is Morning Musume Sakura Gumi’s “Sakura Mankai” with a bonus clip of Natsumi Abe’s brand-spanking new PV for “Sweetholic”. They also have photos of Nanba An lookalike Shibata Ayumi. Speaking of which, over at Barely 18 Movies there’s a fun article on the J-Porn Awards, which was dominated this year by the fearless Miz Nanba.  Meanwhile, Insyte’s Insights has returned and has some screenshots from Nacchi’s concert DVD with Country Musume. Johnny of The Mind: My Own Personal Idea Factory has photos from Morning Musume’s Morning Channel – I have to say, Ogawa Makoto’s shot absolutely fucking rawks! (I know, I’m surprised to be saying that, too) – as well as a selection of cute Sayumi clips. And KagoFeet of Don’t touch my jpop! does something… very strange… to Ayaya and Mikitty’s faces. It’s worth a look.

Karakui has information on Amuro Namie’s upcoming single, the rather candidly titled “Can’t Sleep, Can’t Eat, I’m Sick”. And Gaki of has declared Yui his newest Jpop love. On the wanderlust front, we’ve got Go of jrocknyc providing a wrap-up of SXSW then heads to NYC to see Dir en Grey, Miki of Deepest Thoughts reports on her digestive adventures in Malaysia, and of course Santos looks at sex in Thailand. On the jdorama front, Akiramikeof the mighty HamsapSukebe takes a look at a recent episode of 2nd House (woo-hoo!) and the first three episodes of Salaryman Kintaro Season 3 (the last screencap and comment is priceless).

On the wise consumer front, Madara of Madara Blog makes a compelling case for why he doesn’t want an ipod. I must say, I deeply admire his attachment to the pleasures of carrying around a favorite CD. CJ Marsicano of Stuck In A Pagoda With Motoko Aoyama has an interesting music guessing game up… and all the H!P related songs have already been correctly named. (I was the one who got Springsteen’s “Born to Run” right, but I’m old and cranky.)

Taiwanonymous has an amusing piece about the importance of head-shot photos for job applications in Taiwan – something also common in Japan, by the way. And while it isn’t a blog, there’s a really enjoyable article on The Standard about the rise of amateur oyaji bands among the older citizens of Japan. So even if girl groups aren’t the future of Japanese music, maybe the aging salarymen who like those kinds of girl groups are…?

Ahh, who cares. I’ve got Kiri Sari now. I can deal with anything.


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4 Responses to “Sunday Blog Roundup: Goodbye SweetS, Hello…”
  1. k2c says:

    iPods all break in a year or so anyways.

    Is this guessing game the surprise CJ was talking about?

  2. I’m not sure. I know I enjoyed it and I also happen to read Cult of Pop.

  3. Johnny says:

    I was just about to say the same thing about Makoto’s shot. To be honest, her photo is the only I REALLY like (with Little Miss Princess Sayumi a very close second).

    And what’s with Koharu’s pose, anyway?!?

  4. CJ Marsicano says:

    K2C – No, the guessing game wasn’t the surprise, but all I’ll say is that there’s two articles fellow CofP readers will be very very interested in.

    Ray – I thought that was you! XD