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
How is it possible that an beach scene with blue skies, crystal water, and pretty girls became the backdrop of an identity crisis for one of the most promising young idol groups?
I can’t deny that I enjoyed seeing Q’ulle on the beach for the 4:44 duration of the song. “Heartbeat” exists in a world far removed from the dramatic costuming of their first two singles. With the single, the girls don casual summer wear, and short pants and t-shirts rule the day. The blue sky and rolling sea behind the dance formations come straight from a location scout’s wet dream. Really, the scene couldn’t be more ideal for a summer PV featuring pretty girls in skimpy bikinis bouncing around the sand. So, what’s the problem?
I find myself frustrated with this release for a few reasons. Q’ulle never sold me on their credentials as bubbly idols. They are pretty to look at, sure. Their dancer bodies definitely suit the roles of idols in a beach PV. Are we to believe that Q’ulle’s ultimate goal as idols lies somewhere on the sand or frolicking in the waves? What about all that “Mic Check One Two” business? To what degree “Heartbeat” undermines Q’ulle’ss bid for serious consideration remains to be seen. One benefit of being such a young group is that early missteps are easily forgiven. At least they didn’t stoop to the level of bikini idols, right?
After endlessly looping Hello! Project videos all week, I need a change of pace. This gives me a perfect opportunity to write a little about Q’ulle. If you follow me on Twitter, you might have seen me tweeting that Q’ulle is an early favorite for Best New Group 2015. I also got a fair amount of death threats for making Country Girls Uta cry, but that’s another story. As much as I’ve been loving that other new group, Q’ulle came out of nowhere! It’s April 6 as I’m writing this and the group already released two stand out singles- January’s “mic check one two” and March’s “Monster”, have a third single, “Heartbeat” awaiting release in May, and an album, “Q’ & A – Q’ulle and Answer” set for release in June. That’s a superhuman pace- I’d be surprised if they can keep up with themselves!