Morning Musume ’15 “Seishun Kozou ga Naiteiru” [PV]
A tough as nails supporter cheers you on toward your goals. It’s a fight, it’s a battle, and the rewards are unspoken and perhaps uncertain. The new Morning Musume ’15 PV certainly gives an impression of a pugilistic bombardment. It’s an uphill battle to get to … an adolescent boy’s crush? Oh, no. Certainly, you can read whatever rewards you like at the end of your struggle, regardless of what the lyrics tell you.
Morning Musume sing the verses of “Seishun Kozou ga Naiteiru” in rapid flurries of rhythm like a rapid combo of punches. While that’s not too novel, Tsunku makes an interesting decision to leave the spaces between the combos completely devoid of music. The spaces are long, stark, and heighten the tension of the song. It feels like an eternity between volleys. I must admit that the verses caught me off guard with their unusual structure.
The PV for “Seishun Kozou ga Naiteiru” probably won’t go down in the histories of Great Morning Musume PVs. For most shots, the white studio walls of the background glow like a sanitarily sound hospital emergency room. All the while, a upstage hexagonal portal glows and pulses member colors like an evil all-seeing eye. It looks futuristic in a way reminiscent of a 1970’s science fiction film (perhaps starring Charlton Heston) like (my favorite) the Michael York / Jenny Agutter classic “Logan’s Run“, which has some scary parallels with the idol world. I don’t think they had this in mind while producing “Seishun Kozou ga Naiteiru”.
Ishida Ayumi just sparkles in the choreography. Good on her.
One nice thing we get from this white room is the appearance of long shadows under the girls. It seems impossible that Morning Musume, illuminated from front, cast shadows stretch out in front of them. The shadows emphasize depth in a stark set that, if played incorrectly would have lost all perspective.
I mentioned pugilism earlier mainly because of the choreography. As the camera zooms, one notices the Morning Musume’s formation dance. This time, MM15 swelling numbers give them an opportunity to try out more intricate designs. The mainstay of “Seishun Kozou ga Naiteiru” is the familiar “M” formation (for “Morning Musume”, natch). This time, a triangle oriented with the apex downstage transforms into the “M”. The central five girls, interloper Miyamoto Karin, Ishida Ayumi, Sayashi Riho, Oda Sakura, and Ikuta Erina (!!!), shadow box with wild hooks and thrusting jabs. This is the piece of choreography that I’m going to remember from the song.
The white set for the PV subtly emphasizes the recall with the Sweet Science. The back wall of the set contains horizontal bars colored a shade darker than the ultimate backdrop. These evoke the ropes of a boxing ring- very sanitary boxing ring.
Ishida Ayumi and Kudo Haruka. Duu looks like she’s out for blood!
We take a break from the boxing in Morning Musume’s solo shots. The girls get three sets to play with. Firstly, we have the girls in front of glowing vertical bars that resemble the Brainstorming PV oriented perpendicularly to the mat.
I can’t resist a little Karin wink.
The girls also use fans and parasols as props for their solo shots. So they’re fighters, but they’re very Japanese fighters, right? You know I recently saw “Shurayukihime, which I only mention because the heroine’s weapon of choice is a sword concealed in the handle of a parasol. Can you imagine Kudo Haruka wielding such a weapon?
And, bonus Eripon!
“Seishun Kozou ga Naiteru” delivers one of the more interesting dance break instrumentals. I call is a muted dance break, since the instrumentals barely make a whisper. Muted and EQ’d, the principles of Morning Musume dance along to a gradually rising collection of laser sounds set to an unsettling beat. The effect is uncanny, and it makes for high level of “interestingness”.
Finally, “Seishun Kozou ga Naiteiru” gives the freshly added 12th generation some spotlight for their first release. While the senior members of the group wear space grey and glittering faux chain mail skirts, the new girls sport a black top and chain mail design. Spiked epaulets continue the battle ready motif. No, one probably wouldn’t wear these outfits out on the town.
You can buy ” Seishun Kozou ga Naiteiru / Yuugure wa Ameagari / Ima Koko Kara ” at CD Japan.