NOTES FROM THE IDOL PV COUCH– WEEK 16 2017 (0423-0429)


Over at New School Kaidan, I write a few words about some of the recently released promotional videos. At times, this is a bit of a grueling task, and all of my thoughts can get a little scattered when multiple PVs are released on the same day. But, I always try to present the promotional videos in the best light possible, and I try to remember that each of these pieces of entertainment for your a me is actually the manifestation of a dream for some young girl or girls out there in Japan. Here then is a collection of those write-ups, with a few words sometimes added after a week+ of viewing.

This week we have Promotional videos from:

DAOKO – Haikei Goodbye Sayonara

The promotional video of her digital single release, Daoko finds herself entangled with a photographer. “Haikei Goodbye Sayonara” presents itself as an (almost) straightforward pop song with Daoko’s rap turning into singsong. The photography shoot seems to start normally with a detached Daoko sitting for the hairdresser and changing into strapless thing. Just when things turn a bit violent, it becomes clear that things are not exactly as they seem. I’ve always wondered how they managed to get these kinds of photographs, and now I guess I know! Daoko’s digital single “Haikei Goodbye Sayonara” is out now.

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Seran and Momoka Withdraw from Cheeky Parade


Cheeky Parade members Mizorogi Seran (20) and Kodakari Momoka (18) announced the end of their activities with the group they helped found. Through a news item on the official Cheeky Parade website on May 19, 2017, the two girls stated they will conclude their work with Cheeky Parade at the “Cheeky Parade LIVE LIVE LIVE VOL5” at Shibuya WOMB on June 9, 2017. After that date, the group will continue as a five-piece until Yamamoto Marin and Suzuki Mariya return to the group next year. No reasons were given for the two girls’ withdrawals from Cheeky Parade. Continue reading

Notes from the Idol PV Couch– Week 15 2017 (0416-0422)


Over at New School Kaidan, I write a few words about some of the recently released promotional videos. At times, this is a bit of a grueling task, and all of my thoughts can get a little scattered when multiple PVs are released on the same day. But, I always try to present the promotional videos in the best light possible, and I try to remember that each of these pieces of entertainment for your a me is actually the manifestation of a dream for some young girl or girls out there in Japan. Here then is a collection of those write-ups, with a few words sometimes added after a week+ of viewing.

This week we have Promotional videos from:

Juice=Juice – Feel Kanjiru yo

Barely a week to go until their 9th single release, and Juice=Juice finally deliver a promotional video for “Feel! Kanjiru yo”. As if to add variety to the single, this song bounces along with some confectionery pop, leaving the around the world trip to the single’s other A-side. Visually, Miyazaki Yuka and the girls wear their Sunday best and frolic about the hillside like five Marias in the Japanese hills. The Vaseline smeared camera lens gives the girls an appropriate glow with the midday sun lighting up their auras. Lyrically, Miura Yoshiko pens the Juicers a song about the interconnections holding the universe together and opening one’s heart to feel said connections. Not for the cynically minded, this is the kind of song that will probably make Miyamoto Karin cry in its future performances. You can feel for yourself when “Jidanda Dance / Feel Kanjiru yo” hits store shelves on April 26, 2017.

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Kobushi Factory’s Fujii Rio announces her graduation

Fujii Rio (18), sub-leader of Kobushi Factory (こぶしファクトリー), announced her intention to graduate from her group and Hello! Project this morning. Via a translated statement, the founding member of Kobushi Factory expressed desire to follow her childhood dream of working as a teacher or nurse. Rio, who is from Aichi, plans to graduate this summer with the Hello! Project Summer Concert Tour, which runs from July 15 in Osaka to September 2 in Hiroshima (the tour will stop in Aichi on August 26 and 27). Rio will continue activities with Kobushi Factory and participate in the “Live Tour 2017 Spring ~PROGRESSIVE~“, the 4th Kobushi Factory single release “Shalala! Yareru Hazu sa / Ee ja nai ka Ninja nai ka” (June 14), and the release of the “JK Ninja Girls” movie (July 17). Continue reading

Notes from the Couch: Idol PVs 2017 Week 14 (0409-0415)


Over at New School Kaidan, I write a few words about some of the recently released promotional videos. At times, this is a bit of a grueling task, and all of my thoughts can get a little scattered when multiple PVs are released on the same day. But, I always try to present the promotional videos in the best light possible, and I try to remember that each of these pieces of entertainment for your a me is actually the manifestation of a dream for some young girl or girls out there in Japan. Here then is a collection of those write-ups, with a few words sometimes added after a week+ of viewing.

This week we have Promotional videos from:

Juice=Juice – Jidanda Dance

After a half-year wait, Juice=Juice release the opening promotional video to their ninth single “Jidanda Dance / Feel Kanjiru yo”. Don’t be fooled by the Hello! Project house sound with its synthy leads, retro guitars, and Tsunku-esque interjections: “Jidanda Dance” features lyrics by Kodama Ameko and a BLACC HOLE & NOBB-D composition. The girls sing about the frustrations of mundane tragedies and the need to cut loose, festival style. The variety of shots used in this PV really catch my attention. The director, Inoue Takashi, must have felt free to really explore the shoot location and chose hallways, staircases, and an expansive foyer for the bulk of “Jidanda Dance”‘s footage. For the truly deep Hello Project fan, there’s even a short scene with Kanazawa Tomoko bullying up on Miyamoto Karin and Takagi Sayuki which should give a chuckle. “Jidanda Dance / Feel Kanjiru yo” will dance its way to stores on April 26, 2017.

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Notes from the Couch: Idol PVs 2017 Week 13 (0402-0408)


Over at New School Kaidan, I write a few words about some of the recently released promotional videos. At times, this is a bit of a grueling task, and all of my thoughts can get a little scattered when multiple PVs are released on the same day. But, I always try to present the promotional videos in the best light possible, and I try to remember that each of these pieces of entertainment for your a me is actually the manifestation of a dream for some young girl or girls out there in Japan. Here then is a collection of those write-ups, with a few words sometimes added after a week+ of viewing.

This week we have Promotional videos from:

Kyary Pamyu Pamyu – Iisuta

In the most improbable of improbable, Kyary Pamyu Pamyu’s newest single is an Easter song. I’m not sure how much Easter saturation the Japanese market experiences, not do I know what Japan is doing with a “Christian” holiday like Easter. But, here we have it! To be fair, Kyary Pamyu Pamyu only celebrates the fun and hijinks side of the Spring Equinox with eggs galore. The eggs in question are pastoral colored claymation beings that look like they belong in the fictional Kingdom of Borovnia. You’ll find egg carnage, a half shell bubble bath, and the puzzling inclusion of capybara in Kyary’s Easter. Bagpipes and fifes call out an interesting musical blend that plays less like a dance floor and more like a jaunty jig. So everyone: march along with Kyary and try not to be abducted by the sunny side up flying saucers. Yes, that makes sense in the context of the PV. Kyary Pamyu Pamyu’s “Easta” beams down to Earth on April 5, 2017.

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