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.
Babyraids JAPAN – Bakibaki
From their 13th single, Babyraids JAPAN call on the heavy guitars. Before we get there, I’d like to mention the pastel motif and the black leather jackets decked out idol-flair. I’m a fan of the idol ridiculous, so these jackets and the rest of Babyraids’ outfits match me perfectly. Babyraids seem to do studio promotional videos well, and the pastel pops of color prove that point even further. Or maybe you are more of the fan of the painful-to-watch “mobile phone fail” vignettes? Either way, I can’t recall the last time Babyraids JAPAN fired on all cylinders like the do on “Bakibaki”. The balance between the heavy and the pop is just right! It’s just too bad we’re working on a short version of this PV. You can buy Babyraids JAPAN’s “Bakibaki” on May 10, 2017
Rock A Japonica – Tambourine Ringring
Now, things get a little sticky. Remember the Rock A Japonica’s “Venue Only” Single from the “Dreaming Road” PV Alert? Well, now we have an A-side promotional video for a single that most of us can’t actually get! But, perhaps we should count our blessings instead of gripe. “Tambourine Ringring” is a great guitar pop song. The girls keep the school uniform look intact with some rather conservative looking blazers and skirts, and execute a very nice roof top dance shot. “Tambouring Rinring” is filled with the kind of optimism and hopefulness that typifies the beginning of a new school year, yet is still necessary in quantity. Honestly, if “Tambourine Ringring” was available commercially, I would snatch it up because this is quality idol pop.
sora tob sakana – ribbon
From their new “cocoon ep”, sora tob sakana continue their juxtaposition of sweet voices and mathematically precise music. When “ribbon” starts, you might be tricked into thinking you’re listening to a saccharine idol group; but then the drums start with its pinpoint rhythmic hyperactivity. And, this is why I love sora tob sakana: their musical offerings are never lazy or haphazard. Enough of my drooling. “Ribbon” is an animation PV that follows the hare’s musings that eventually lead skyward. It’s a galaxy railroad, a wormhole, and an infinite ribbon that leads you wondering which dreams are we watching: the tortoise or the hare? You can buy sora tob sakana’s “cocoon ep” on April 11, 2017.
Ebisu★Muscats – Bakkyarou
A new album from Ebisu★Muscats is on the horizon, and now we get a promotional video just in time to promote “Kidoairaku”. “Bakkyaro” fills itself with the ladies of Ebisu★Muscats in gold hotpants and midriff baring double breasted tops. The outfit’s sheen doesn’t do much to distract from the content of the wrappings. And, even keeping in mind this group’s … colorful history(?), “Bakkyaro” is a much more musical endeavor than one might think. This is definitely not the squeaky clean idol group that we see on these pages, but of course that doesn’t mean Ebisu★Muscats aren’t without their merits. Check out the new album, “Kidoairaku” on April 26, 2017.
Ebisu★Muscats – Koi no Uta
You know, I didn’t expect to be touched by Ebisu★Muscats, but “Koi no Uta” is a more affecting song than one might think. You know how most fairy tales end with “Happily Ever After”? Well, “Koi no Uta” gives look at what “Happily Ever After” looks like. It looks REALLY cute. This is not young love, nor is it new love. When our two leads (who live in not-so-glamorous style) look at each other when they part ways in the morning, how can you not want live a life with this kind of love? You might suspect that “Koi no Uta” is a ballad: it is. If the tempo scares you off, then so be it. You’re just going to have to miss your best case scenario. Check out the new album, “Kidoairaku” on April 26, 2017.
Zenryoku Shoujo R – U Na Gi No Bo Ri
The Full Power Girls R switch it on for their promotional video for “U Na Gi No Bo Ri”. Rather than just a live PV, Zenryoku Shoujo R take you inside the choreography with some nifty camera movements. Like their English name implies, the group give a really energetic performance that includes great team work and formations. The muscly guitar riff that dominates the sound of “U Na Gi No Bo Ri” keeps the power level high. In all, the PV serves as a great hype machine for the live performances of Zenryoku Shoujo R. Make sure to check them out next time you’re in their area. “U Na Gi No Bo Ri” hit record store shelves on April 5, 2017, and you can order it by following the links below.
notall – Kimi ni Da-Da-Dan
The idol group that its fans can produce release the promotional video for their second A-side “Kimi ni Da-Da-Dan”. The bulk of the shots have the four girls mugging in front of a large reflector. Presumably, we are seeing notall at a glamour shoot, and when they are not mugging playfully for the camera the girls give some good looks. The uptempo “Kimi ni Da-Da-Dan” plays cheerfully with its guitar driven instrumentation. Really give this song a listen, because I’m sure more than a few of you will love what you see and hear. You can buy “Capybara Jisoku 50km / Kimi ni Da-Da-Dan” starting on April 19, 2017.
dela – SAKAE GO ROUND
The Nagoya based idol unit dela (delightful enchanting lovely angels) is back for another go around with their 9th single release “Akai Cardigan”. “SAKAE GO ROUND”, found as the coupling track on said single, puts the girls in and about the Sakae District in Nagoya. Like good local idols, the area’s stores (together with their employees and mascot characters) receive heavy feature in”SAKAE GO AROUND” . No, the PV is not a particularly cerebral experience, but I think dela meshes the commercialism with a sense of fun that makes “SAKAE GO ROUND” a pleasant tour of Nagoya. When you’re in Nagoya, tell’em “dela sent me!”
Asachill – Tokyo Kowaos
There’s something here with Asachill. Admittedly, I hadn’t heard of Asachill before researching for this New PV Alert. But, after letting the song play, I just felt compelled to at least write a few words on her behalf. Asachill puts up some pretty groovy beats to match her sing-song vocals in “Tokyo Kowaos”. I found the entire product pleasing in a “zone-out and chill” way. Just as interesting as the music, the promotional video for “Tokyo Kowaos” features the girl around (you guessed it) Tokyo and in some pretty darkly lit places. All told, I liked the pushed colors, contrast, and sharpness of “Tokyo Kowaos”, and of course I can’t find fault in that pink hair. Keep on rockin’ it, girl.
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