Notes from the Idol PV Couch– Week 25 2017 (0625-0701)


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 come back with a vengeance with Promotional videos from:

PINK CRES. – Pretty・Cute・Future

Filmed during their opening slot at the last Buono! concert, “Kirei Kawai Mirai” starts with an introduction of the girls (so when I gush over over Kobayashi Hikaru you’ll know who I’m talking about). With electric guitars forming the backbone of the arrangement, seems like it might be at odds with the conception of PINK CRES. This isn’t really the case, with the song providing a nice slice of pop alongside the guitar solos. Visually, “Kirei Kawai Mirai” is the compliment of “fun fun fun” with onscreen graphics over live shots comprising the majority of the video. Maybe the song is just a step behind the infectiousness of “fun fun fun”, but “Oh oh oh chu chu chu, Your baby girl” is every bit as catchy. Also, Hikaru gets more chances to sing, so this is my jam for that. “Pretty Cute Future” from PINK CRES.’s debut release “crescendo” goes on sale June 28, 2017.

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Notes from the Idol PV Couch– Week 21 2017 (0528-0603)


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 come back with a vengeance with Promotional videos from:

Kobushi Factory – Sha la la! we can do this

From the first frames of the new Kobushi Factory, you can tell how “Sha la la! Yareru Hazu sa” will be themed. September 2 is Fujii Rio’s last date with the group, and this promotional video somewhat fictionalizes how those last few days will look. There are no teary goodbyes; instead there’s work, work, work! As the Factory girls plan their live from rehearsals to costumes to choreography, it’s clear that the drive of the group is the reward for Rio’s years in the Projects. I suspect that Rio wants to be remembered for her part of that brilliant rise of Kobushi Factory more than any individual accolades. This just seems to be the Kobushi way. Say goodbye to Rio when “Shalala! Yareru Hazu sa / Ee ja nai ka Ninja nai ka” is released on June 14, 2017.

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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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Notes from the Idol PV Couch– Week 8 2017 (0226 – 0304)


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:

Morning Musume。’17 – Jealousy Jealousy


Looking like an elegant slumber party before the actual slumbering, “Jealousy Jealousy” rounds out the promotional videos for Morning Musume’s 63rd single release. Things look very black and white, although it’s not particularly clear which side is actually which (metaphorically speaking). What I do know is the group makes great use of their anchors: Oda Sakura and Fukumura Mizuki sing with an increasing presence from Nonaka Miki while Ishida Ayumi rightfully anchors the dance team and provides legit skills to the rap interludes (you should also stick around to hear Miki’s English in the rap- always a treat). Perhaps “Jealousy Jealousy” rests on foundations that are more predictable than its counterpart A-side, but man is the song smooth. For those put off by the mortar shells in “Brand New Morning”, “Jealousy Jealousy” feels like coming home to groove laden J-pop butter. “Brand New Morning/Jealousy Jealousy” goes on sale March 8, 2017.

Beyond the Couch

Over at Twitter I ran a poll, Continue reading

Notes from the Idol PV Couch– Week 5 2017 (0205 – 0211)

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:

Tsubaki Factory,
HKT48,
Team Syachihoko,
Fairies,
Faint★Star [1] and [2],
Why@Doll,
J☆Dee’Z,
HR,
Star☆T, and
243 to Yoshizaki Aya

Tsubaki Factory – The Magnificent Camellia

Well, I’ll be darned. Tsubaki Factory release the promotional video for “Urawashi no Camelia”, and it’s right up my proverbial ally. Starting with a a bit of ragtime from the Victrola and drenched in a faux sepia process, our girls party like its 1899. And, when the girls wake up to 2017 they still Charleston their way through the school yard like rebellious Meiji era teens. When the girls mug their way through the school corridors they look like they are having the time of their lives! For my part, I don’t think we get to see the Tsubaki Factory girls having this much fun together nearly enough. For its incredible fun and cute blend of new and old, I’m giving “Urawashi no Camellia” a 244 badge of distinction. You can find “Urawashi no Camellia” on the group’s debut single (linked below) on February 22, 2017.

Beyond the Couch

Yes, I’m still over the moon with this song. I cannot wait to get it in my hands and onto my iPod! A refreshing change from the electro-pop that permeates these releases, “Urawashi no Camellia” still manages to sound fresh and youthful even though it mimics the musical styles from over 100 years past. Given their brief history, I don’t think Tsubaki Factory will stay with the retro jams for very long, making this song a jewel in their repertoire. Keep blooming, you magnificent camellia! Continue reading

Be Kind, (Promotional Video) Rewind – 20161218 to 20161224


Over at New School Kaidan, I write a few words about some of the recently released promotional videos. This 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: Tentenko, Mako x Hitomi, Tsuri Bit, Beboga, Questy, MIKA♡MISA, Seno Sister, and every♥ing! Unfortunately because I’m on a bit of a vacation, I won’t be adding any Review+ … I’m so sorry if this is your favorite part of my weekly articles.

BUT, as a new year’s resolution, I am going to add a poll in this and subsequent weeks! Now you can vote for your favorite promotional videos every week with no need to justify your choices!


Tentenko – Kuruma

“Kuruma”, the lead track from Tentenko’s latest release “Kogyo Seihin” gets a promotional video, and boy is it a doozy. The song underneath all the electro punk groove is clearly pop, you just need to excavate the melodies from the harsh machine gun rattles. The melody plays like the sing-song we’ve heard from much of Tentenko’s previoius pop releases. I think the visual language of the promotional video is probably the real story here. It’s clear we are attending a funeral: black clothes and a well-furnished sedan drive that point home. But, who or what is being buried? We are shown lots of fruit including a banana suggestively split longitudinally, raw crystals spin on platters, glass breaks and reforms, and a gun is produced from a sensual stocking. In one particularly gorgeous shot, milk and tea are poured together into a tea cup. Man, one could probably spend all day trying to decode this one. Although I have my personal opinions, I won’t deprive you of the fun of unearthing this video yourself.

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Be Kind, (Promotional Video) Rewind – 20161127 to 20161203


Over at New School Kaidan, I write a few words about some of the recently released promotional videos. This 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 Dempagumi.inc, SUPER☆GiRLS (Rewind Exclusive), Shiritsu Ebisu Chuugaku (Rewind Exclusive), Shinozaki Ai (Rewind Exclusive), predia, Moso Calibration (Rewind Exclusive), Especia, X21, dela (Rewind Exclusive), Shounen ga Milk, and Summer Rocket (Rewind Exclusive).

Dempagumi.inc – WWDBEST

Do you hear that? It’s the ghost of Dempagumi.inc’s greatest hits bubbling to the surface for their latest promotional video, “WWDBEST”. You will hear the familiar musical catch phrases for much of the group’s single discography throughout the PV. Also, your eyes are treated to a bit of a mish mosh of he group’s video discography. Just like it sounds on paper, “WWDBEST” is a glorious mess. While that doesn’t sound like much of a compliment, that descriptor I think accurately describes much of what transpired over the last 8 years with Dempagumi.inc. Like it or leave it, love it or loathe it, you can’t deny Dempagumi.inc’s presence in an idol world that’s grown increasingly eccentric. You will find “WWDBEST” on Dempagumi.inc’s 3CD “best of” set, “WWDBEST ~Dempa Ryoko!~” on sale December 21, 2016.

Rewind +
To answer your main question: this is a clever idea, but Continue reading

Be Kind, (Promotional Video) Rewind – 20161029 to 20161105


Over at New School Kaidan, I write a few words about some of the recently released promotional videos. This 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 DEEP GIRL, Younapi, Musubizm, Kus Kus, JYUJYU, Akishibu Project, ONEPIXCEL, P.IDL, 7 ☆ 3, Zenbu Kimi no Sei da, Rock A Japonica, and WHY@DOLL


DEEP GIRL – Out Of Control (Live Video)


In this new DEEP GIRL live video, Mashiro, Non, Rikopin, and Kanon cover 90’s act Hoobastank’s “Out of Control”. Of course, this is part of a series of Live Video’s that the group released in the last month or so. Frankly, this song selection doesn’t really work for me. But, the girls appear to be having a lot of fun with this song so I might just give them a pass (even for Hoobastank). I guess that’s all my hangups, really. I’m just really thirsty for some original music from these girls.

Rewind +
No, I’m still not a fan of Hoobastank, and I haven’t listened to this since

DEEP GIRL Official Links
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