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Morning Musume ’17 64th Single Countdown Part 2*:

Hello everyone! I’m back with the second part of MM’17 new single Jama Shinai de Here We Go! / Dokyuu no Go Sign / Wakain da shi! The second part will be a review of Jama Shinai de Here We Go mv that was released on September 24th alongside with the third music video Wakain da shi.

 

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 Regular edition A

MV

 

Outfits:

The outfits in this mv consist of a black pleather dress with silver short sleeves. It appears that there are two different versions of the dress to have some uniqueness in the outfits. These simple outfits work with the mv and the overall theme of the song, thus I’m rating this a 9 out of 10

 

 

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Choreography:

            During the drop scenes it primarily focuses on the choreography. Overall the choreography works well with the slow pace of the song while showing the girls sexier side. I have yet to see the live performance of this song, but I look forward to seeing it. For now, I’m rating the choreography an 8 out of 10

 

 

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 Dance 1

 

 

 Dance 2

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Special Effects:

The special effects in this mv are simple, yet it works well with this song. During the close-ups, diagonal lines and diamond-like effects were used, which are similar to the ones used inムキダシで向き合って mv. The lighting used in this mv gives a dewy hue, which compliments the outfits worn.

 

 

 

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            I was especially impressed with the scenes where the girls are coming out from the mirror, which created that ripple-like effect. This shows how much the editing staff has improved, thus I’m rating this a 10 out of 10.

 

(insert mirror 1, mirror 2…)

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Overall:

            Overall I’m really impressed with this mv. At first, I wasn’t too impressed with the song itself, but now I’m starting to like it more and more. This is a great debut single for Morito Chisaki and a fantastic graduation single for Kudo Haruka. By the time this article has been posted, the single would have been already released. There’s just one more mv review, which would conclude this singles countdown.

 

Do leave a comment below on your thoughts of MM’17 new single!

 

Have an awesome day!

Angel

*Editor's note: Article was intended for September but was delayed.

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Morning Musume '17 64th Single Countdown Part 1*:

Hello everyone! So I’m back with another review, but this time it’s a music video review as we’re counting down to MM’17 release of Jama Shinai de Here We Go! / Dokyuu no Go Sign / Wakain da shi! This single is also Kudo Haruka’s graduation single and the debut single of the 14th generation member Morito Chisaki, who is also a member of Country Girls.

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Kudo Haruka

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Morito Chisaki

 

This is going to be a 3-part article series, each being a review of the 3 A-side music videos. Thus the next 3 articles will be a lot shorter than a typical blog post. So this first part will be a review of Dokyuu no Go Sign MV that was released on September 18th.

 

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limited edition B 

 

 

General Info:

So this song, like with The Vision and Oh My Wish consists of a singing team and a dancing team. The dancing team is comprised of Ikuta Erina, Ishida Ayumi, Kudo Haruka, Kaga Kaede, Yokoyama Reina, and Morito Chisaki.

 

And just as a disclaimer, I’m only forming opinions of this song based on the mv that was released.

 

 

 

Outfits:

So starting with the singing team, their outfits consist of either a blue and pink polka dotted or a teal and orange polka dotted crop top with a matching circle skirt. They are also wearing a white embellished jacket and white sneakers.

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The dancing team’s outfits also consist of the same crop tops, jackets, and sneakers. The only difference is that they are wearing white pants rather than the circle skirt.

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These outfits are indeed pretty cute and go well with the happy-go-lucky vibe of the song, however, it clashes with the white backdrop from the mv, sometimes making it hard to see. So I’ll give the outfits an 8 out of 10.

 

Choreography:

            From what I can tell from the mv, from the singing team the choreography consists of a lot of peace signs. Otherwise, there’s really not much to go on. For the dancing team, there’s incorporation of acrobatics, which is refreshing. However, based on how the mv is edited, the choreography appears to be “messy”, and not very well executed. This could be because of there being too many solo shots and not a well thought out placement of special effects, which I’ll get to in the next section. The dancing team does get their screen time after the second chorus. While this is a great way of showing off the choreography, to me this particular part is well… awkward.

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Of course, this is also the part of the song, I didn’t really like since it disrupts the happy-go-lucky vibe. At this part of the song, this is where there’s opera singing, which is the best I can describe it. I just thought that it wasn’t necessary, which in turn made me think that the choreography here wasn’t needed. And in truth, the choreography isn’t that great here. It felt really out of place, and hard to watch. 

 

So overall, it’s not MM’17 best performance, so I’ll be giving this a 3 out of 10.

 

Special Effects:

            There are some parts of the special effects that I liked and others that I didn’t think was necessary for the reasons in the choreography section.

 

 

 

Well like, start off with what I did like, which was the solo scene. This reminded me a lot of a part in Buonos’ 初恋サイダー mv.

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The solo shots consisted of each member behind a green screen, which (often) sports their member colors. This was executed quite well and a good break from the white backdrop. The only complaint I have is that there are too many of these shots, which disrupts the choreography.

 

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Now with the parts, I didn’t like was the random placement of the special effects. Here I have two examples:

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Both of these pictures show how these special effects can block the view of the choreography.

 

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The special effects placement could have better and more effort could have been put into the editing of the mv, but to me, it felt lazily done, so I’ll give this a 5 out of 10.

 

Overall:

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Overall, I did like a majority of the song itself. As mentioned earlier, you already know what part I didn’t really like. While the mv was cute, it just wasn’t well put together. So hopefully the other two mv will be better. So when the next mv is released, so expect another review from me! Do leave a comment on what you thought about the mv.

 

Until next time!

 

Best,

Angel

 

*Editor note: This article was delayed and was intended for September.

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ORIHIME & ミステリア Review by Angel

ORIHIME & ミステリア Review

    Hello, everyone! It has been awhile since I last posted, so I thought that I review two songs that are one of my current favorites, ORIHIME, and ミステリア by NEWS. These two songs were featured in their most recent album NEVERLAND, which I’ll do a more in-depth look later on. But exactly how I would describe this album? It’s been put together in such a why that it tells a story. 

 The album

The album

To keep it short, NEWS is a four member group, formally a nine member group. Their current members are Takahisa Masuda, Shigeaki Kato, Yuya Tegoshi, and their leader Keiichiro Koyama.

    Starting with ORIHIME, it’s inspired by the folktale that’s associated with Tanabata, aka the star festival, one of Japan’s seasonal festivals and having a Chinese origin. Essentially the folktale is a love story between Orihime, a weaver, and Hikoboshi, a cow herder, but they can only meet once a year on July 7 due to Orihime’s father exiling them to the opposite ends of the milky way (3). 

    With NEWS’ take on the folktale, their song ORIHIME I believe is in the POV of Hikoboshi before meeting again with Orihime on July 7. This is most notable at the beginning of the song:

“Wishing, begging
Searching, grieving
My voice doesn’t reach

I understand that’s the way it is
I end up hoping
Like the miracle of the day we met” (1)

    Now with ミステリア, this song is one of the most memorable songs from the album, asides from U R not alone. What’s unique about this song is that you can interpret it two different ways, literally or figuratively, the latter being my personal favorite. 
“Mysteria, Mr. Monster
I can’t look away from those eyes
I went crazy from the loneliness
Is that guy the incarnation of me
Mysteria, Mr. Monster
I can’t bring you down with these hands
Is it the incarnation of the madness
Hiding deep down inside of me
Mysteria
Mysteria” (2)

The chorus of this song really captures that moment of confrontation, whether it’s for yourself or someone else. But I’ll let you decide as to how you interpret this song. 

<3 Live Performance Review <3 :

    Of course, I will not leave you all hanging like that. ;) So I also include a YouTube video of the live performance of these two songs. ^_^

 Keiichiro Koyama

Keiichiro Koyama

    Starting off with the costumes for both songs, this is the classic white and silver outfits that NEWS typically wears. By itself, it’s really simple. However, each member’s outfit is slightly different making it unique to each member. Based on the costumes alone, I would give this a 6.5 out of 10. [insert member picsx4 – also if you could put their names on the bottom of the pics.]

 Shigeaki Kato

Shigeaki Kato

 Takahisa Masuda

Takahisa Masuda

 Yuya Tegoshi

Yuya Tegoshi

 

    However, what makes these two performances unique is the incorporation of the two stages and the backup dancers. 

ORIHIME:

Like with most ballads performed by NEWS, there’s no choreography. Now, most of you are thinking “why isn’t there a choreography?” That’s because NEWS singing alone is powerful enough to move the audience. With this performance, it was how they were placed and letting the backup dancers tell the story.

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What I also love about this set up is the backdrop. So for this stage and set up, it scores a 10/10. :D

ミステリア:

The performance of this song is moved to a smaller stage, putting NEWS is the center, and focus of the audience. The previous stage emphasizes the space-like feel with the stars and the milky way, while this smaller stage emphasizes the mysterious feel with the fog and the choice of lights (red and purple).

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Here, NEWS gets to show off their choreography. It’s simple, yet it fits with the song, bringing out the Dr. Jekyll and Mr. Hyde feel as the backup dancers are also incorporated into the choreography. It’s best for me to let you see the performance for yourselves to see what I mean. Overall, I give this performance a 10 out of 10. 

Overall, this is one of NEWS’ best performances. After watching this so many times, I can’t wait to get the DVD of their NEVERLAND tour. If this article perks your interest, I highly recommend watching any of their concerts, my personal favorite still being their Tokyo Dome concert from their WHITE tour from 2015. 

If there’s a particular concert, mv, or song you would like to review, just comment down below. 

Until next time!

Best,
Angel

References:
1.    h0bbitx3. (2017, March 24). ORIHIME Translation. Retrieved from: http://h0bbitx3.tumblr.com/post/158760921841/orihime-translation 

2.    dh0bbitx3. (2017, March 23). ミステリア Translation. Retrieved from: http://h0bbitx3.tumblr.com/post/158737909861/%E3%83%9F%E3%82%B9%E3%83%86%E3%83%AA%E3%82%A2-translation   

3.    nippon.com. (2015, July 04). “Tanabata” (Star Festival) Japan’s Ancient Stellar Celebration. Retrieved from: http://www.nippon.com/en/features/jg00097/
 

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Hina Fest Concert Review by Angel Huynh

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Hina Fest Concert Review by Angel Huynh

Hello!

I’m Angel and this is very first concert review article. Sometime in the near future, I will post a more casual blog post about myself, but for now, let’s jump straight into the review!

So what is Hina Fest? Hina Fest is an annual Hello! Project concert that celebrates Hinamatsuri, which is known as a Girls’ Day, a Japanese Holiday.

 

For this particular year, there were four concerts that focused on a different Hello! Project group and 1 member: Morning Musume’17, ANGERME, C-ute, and Tsugunaga Momoko. This concert review will only feature content from the Morning Musume’17 Preview and the Buono! segment from Tsugunaga Momoko Preview. So I apologize to those who wanted an overall review of the four-day concert. Maybe in the near future, I’ll do a more in-depth review if there’s enough interest.

 

General Impressions...

This year the concert was held at the Makuhari Messe convention center. The stage set up is typical of a Hello! Project concert

Overall, everyone did a fantastic job with the performance. Most of the singing was on-point, a very coordinated choreography, and the energy was high.

There are some things that I didn’t particularly like. The most notable would be the opening sequence, which was the same for all of the concerts.  It featured the official 2017 Hina Fest logo, and a really well animated sakura flower cyclone. H!P really up their game with the animations.

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However, while the animation itself was impressive, it does get old every time it’s played to introduce each group that performs. What this opening lacks is the photos of the group/members. So if you do get the opportunity to see it, you’ll probably see what I mean.

Now about the stage itself, while it was a typical H!P stage that you get at large venues, to me it lacks uniqueness. Given I am very biased to my absolute favorite idol group (which I will post about), I do feel like H!P could have taken advantage of their stage. When I say this I mean that all of the groups could have broken away from their dance formations. But also to add a backdrop that would fit the overall theme of the concert, this case being Hinamatsuri.  

Costumes

Moving on to the costumes. A good majority of them were from singles that the groups were promoting, or about to promote for. Morning Musume’17’s outfits were from their single Jealousy Jealously , which is a white silver sleeveless dress. Country Girls’ outfits were from their single Peanut Butter Jelly Love. Kobushi Factory’s outfits were from their movie single. I could go on from here, but you get the point.

"Buono!’s outfits were one of my favorites. If you looked closely at it, you’ll see that it has their name on it"

 

 

 

Of course, there were some outfits that I didn’t particularly like. Most notably would be Morning Musume’17’s second outfit. It was a variation of last year’s outfit, but with feathers that were completely unnecessary.

 

Overall, I would give the outfits 7 out of 10. 

Overall, I would say the concert was good, but it’s not the greatest that I have seen. I’m only saying this because it’s pretty much an average set up. Personally, I also feel like there were too many MCs in between songs/groups and I find myself skipping over them mostly because they’re pretty short and don’t seem to be as engaging with the audience as they could have been. 

Again, after writing all of this and only watching one concert and the last third of another one, maybe it gets better with the others. The other possibility being that this has always been the set up with H!P concerts, which would be disappointing. 

So that’s all I have for this concert review. Do comment down below what you thought of the concert(s), and also let me know what you would like me to review next. :) It can be just about anything from concerts to music videos.

 

Best,

Angel

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