Kurayami Monogatari

Would love a comment every so often <<

Hello! Pro Kenshuusei Hokkaido – Real☆Little☆Girl/Kanojo ni Naritai!!! (Hello! Pro Kenshuusei Hokkaido Ver.) May 26, 2017

Filed under: Hello! Pro Kenshuusei — solarblade @ 4:39 am

reallittlegirl

Track Listing

  1. Real☆Little☆Girl
  2. Kanojo ni Naritai!!! (Hello! Pro Kenshuusei Hokkaido Ver.)
  3. Real☆Little☆Girl (Instrumental)
  4. Kanojo ni Naritai!!! (Hello! Pro Kenshuusei Hokkaido Ver.) (Instrumental)

1. Real☆Little☆Girl

As the Hokkaido’s debut A-side, Real☆Little☆Girl was our actual first taste of the 7 members that make up the branch and its no surprise that they would get a very cutesy song as their first.  When I actually first heard it, I felt like this was an unused Country Girls song because it’s just got that feel from the intro sounding a smidge like “Dou Datte Ii no’s” intro to the rest feeling like “Koi Dorobo” & “Wakatte Iru no ni Gomen ne”.  Though it’s a catchy song to listen to and solos from all 7 members is pretty impressive too!  It’s got a lot of potential for these girls and they don’t sound bad really.

2. Kanojo ni Naritai!!! (Hello! Pro Kenshuusei Hokkaido Ver.)

The other A-side is of course known as the debut A-side for the actual Kenshuusei.  Well, originally it was 5 of the Kenshuusei back then in 2012.  Anyways, the Hokkaido version isn’t too different opting to keep the original’s arrangement but replacing vocals.  Considering the original barely had solos (3 lines), this cut actually has no solo lines so it’s just there to listen and not really focus on the members individually.

I wasn’t expecting the Hokkaido branch to actually receive its own single, but here we are with their first apparently.  I will actually say that Real☆Little☆Girl is a nice bout of fresh air to get away from the EDM-ness of H!P in recent times (granted other groups are starting to sway away as well).  It’s just a simple, cute and bright song to really showcase these newer girls.  Though I’m curious to why Kanojo ni Naritai!!! was chosen to be covered…I guess it makes sense that it was a first single for the main branch so it’s more like a signature song for the trainees.  Overall, it’s OK, but I wonder if we’ll get more.

 

Hello! Pro Kenshuusei – Engeki Joshi-bu Musical “Nega Poji Poji” Original Soundtrack December 29, 2016

Filed under: Hello! Pro Kenshuusei — solarblade @ 5:36 am

negapojipoji

Track Listing

  1. Nega Poji Poji
  2. Ima Made Ikitekite Doukou
  3. Tempura Tabetai
  4. Ima wa Dame

1. Nega Poji Poji

As the theme song for the play, Nega Poji Poji is a lot more upbeat and danceable than past OST themes which is pretty cool and actually interesting.  Despite that a lot of the song is sung by Kenshuusei since only 4 of the 9 Tsubaki members are involved thrown in there throughout.  Not sure what I think of the vocals as it’s majority unison with a few duet lines here and there.  It sure does get repetitive having the girls repeat Nega & Poji so much, but otherwise, I enjoyed the bouncier atmosphere.

2. Ima Made Ikitekite Doukou

The remaining tracks on the single highlights different Teams (3 teams of different girls did the stageplay on different days).  We start off with Team B (consisting of Mizuho from Tsubaki and KSS members Takase, Maeda, Yoshida, and Onoda from the Engeki troupe.  After hearing “Nega Poji Poji”, I wasn’t expecting an acoustic ballad on the single.  Now I hate to say, but I actually do not know what most of the members sound like so I can’t comment on it, but there’s some good vocals here.  After the chorus, it does start to feel like a reggae track.  Interesting, but I wanna see who’s singing what.

3. Tempura Tabetai

Team C’s track is next and that grouping is Ogata and Asakura from Tsubaki and Ichioka, Ono K., and Nishida from the KSS.  The arrangement feels poppy and like a simple track with just piano involved.  I definitely heard Risamaru and Icchan in the song and maybe Kiki here and there.  With the playful but minimal arrangement, the song is a bit forgetful but not bad.

4. Ima wa Dame

Finally, we have Team A’s track which is sung between Tsubaki’s Yamagishi and KSS members; Kaga, Horie, Kanatsu, and Kiyono.  From the start, I get this sense of kayoukyoku and 90s pop and interestingly enough all the members seem to get lines.  As short as the song is, I quite like this track of the four.

 

 

At the end of the year, we had another OST to deal with and while initially it seemed to be a Tsubaki stageplay, it feels more like a Kenshuusei-led one.  The preview single overall was a good taste and I liked the variety of genres it handles, but I feel like 3 discs could happen since the groupings exist.  Overall, nice but there’ll probably be more!

 

 

Hello! Pro Kenshuusei – ① Let’s say “Hello!” February 24, 2015

Filed under: Hello! Pro Kenshuusei — solarblade @ 9:42 pm

1letssayhello

Track Listing

  1. Say! Hello!
  2. Onna no Sono
  3. Crying
  4. Seishun Beat wa 16
  5. Table Seki Aitetemo Counter Seki
  6. “Koishitai Shinto”
  7. “Idol wa Robot” tte Showa no Hanashi ne
  8. Oheso no Kuni Kara Konnichiwa
  9. Kanojo ni Naritai!!!
  10. Ten Made Nobore! feat. Juice=Juice

1. Say! Hello!

Opening up the album, Say! Hello! instantly gave me a trip going back a couple of years when H!P was oversaturating the brass with songs like “Shining Power”, “Waratte YOU!”, and “Busu ni Naranai Tetsugaku”, even “The Matenrou Show” so I was initially worried that this song would’ve been a giant fail, but for some reason this song is refreshing.  It could be the 8bit melody that’s in the chorus (made me think of Katamari XD).  It’s a funky tune and all sorts of solos to be had (as of the review no one knows who sings those yet).  Although Manaka Inaba’s epic solo at the end of the first chorus was downright amazing!  There’s just something about this song that really pops out and I love every moment, makes me feel happy and upbeat…good way to begin the album!

2. Onna no Sono

I was waiting for the KSS to do another EDM song and they bring it with Onna no Sono.  It’s another heavy song like “Oheso no Kuni Kara Konnichiwa” but has a lot more oomph and it isn’t as goofy as the aforementioned song.  I was happy to see Minami Nomura and Mizuki Murota get the two solos especially the former because she sounds really good through it.  Add on that awesome mid8 section with the fluttery piano and strings punch…so good.  Definitely a song that stands out within the EDM mold of H!P.

3. Crying

It seems like Tsunku is hitting the main sounds that H!P has been known for.  Crying strives to be a lot like the stuff you would hear from Buono!  A lot of guitars and drums but still quite idol-ish.  Now a lot of songs from the album were performed during 2014 (except maybe “Say! Hello!” and “Idol wa Robot”).  Crying has had gone through some vocal changes but it seems like the solos here were from Ruru Danbara, Kisora Niinuma, and Ayano Hamaura.  I wasn’t fully into this song much and just didn’t stick much for me…definitely an album song.

4. Seishun Beat wa 16

Our next song is a bit more upbeat and funny enough kind of reminds me of the days when H!P was into anime like Shugo Chara! and Kirarin Revolution.  This song sounds a lot like something you would hear as an anime introduction.  I do like the synths of course and of course the three soloists, Ayano Hamaura, Risa Yamaki, and Natsumi Taguchi sound too cute for their solos.  It’s definitely the cute tune and I enjoyed it for the most part.

5. Table Seki Aitetemo Counter Seki

Back to something more EDM-ish, Table Seki Aitetemo Counter Seki has a strong beat and melody and yet the vocal melodies has a certain S/mileage sound to it.  Considering this is one of the two songs that are sung entirely in unison, this song actually left nothing for me to enjoy.  I just couldn’t get past the song being so repetitive and cumbersome to sit through.

6. “Koishitai Shinto”

The next track kind of reminds me of the B-side Morning Musume had in 2013 where one of the girls would rap lol.  “Koishitai Shinto” has a pretty cool opening and the random MCs are interesting touches, but once the squeaky voices throw me off xD.  I do think the transitions into the chorus is a bit jarring, but some of the choices like the ~throw your hands in the aiiiir~ is fitting for some reason.  Overall, this song is good, strange but I like it.

7. “Idol wa Robot” tte Showa no Hanashi ne

The last of the new songs, “Idol wa Robot” is really strange for Tsunku…well it doesn’t sound like something Tsunku has done before and I’m happy for that.  I love the arrangement and goofy lyrics.  There’s so many solo lines here that even I don’t know who’s who.  It’s kind of synthy but also a bit cutesy as well.  Sometimes, it feels like it’s going on a bit too long for its good because the main hook of the song gets repetitive pretty quickly.  Still, it’s a catchy tune!

8. Oheso no Kuni Kara Konnichiwa

Though the goofy song on the album is definitely this one.  As we enter the older songs, Oheso no Kuni Kara Konnichiwa is still a pretty bangin’ song and a damn funny one at that.  Though I am curious why they didn’t edit any of the older songs considering a lot of girls that were in the KSS are either promoted in the company or left it altogether.  Either way, it’s a pretty great song still and shows off the girls in such a fun, energetic way…plus I still get a kick in Hamachan’s intro!

9. Kanojo ni Naritai!!!

Then we get to the debut of the KSS (well that’s in the grey area, but whatever).  Now this one I would’ve expected some kind of album version, but it isn’t…it’s the original when it was sung by the 5 girls.  On the album, this song is pretty energetic and fast and the synths are just all over the place.  Not much else to say, but I think we could’ve had more girls involved here.

10. Ten Made Nobore! feat. Juice=Juice

I would’ve figured that this would’ve end the album because of it’s meaning and feeling.  It’s a light and happy song and the girls sound good singing in unison here.  Now Juice=Juice is here because they were still considered KSS after the group was made at the time.  Still it’s a nice ending to the album and a sweet and calming one at that.

Tracks Recommended

  • Onna no Sono
  • Oheso no Kuni Kara Konnichiwa
  • Say! Hello!
  • “Idol wa Robot” tte Showa no Hanashi ne

Song of Avoidance

  • Table Seki Aitetemo Counter Seki

Wow, to think the Kenshuusei got an album before Juice=Juice did :0.  ① Let’s say “Hello!” is surprisingly not that bad of an album, since it’s the first studio album released in 2015.  The Kenshuusei last year were definitely picking up speed on releases and was surprised they got an album and it turned out better than I thought.  Some of the songs are a bit meh, but most of it was good.  Wished they edited the last three tracks to actually fit the group of current girls, but that’s a small issue.  Hope that means more music is going to come from the trainees after this!

 

Hello! Pro Kenshuusei – Karen na Gasshoudan

Filed under: Hello! Pro Kenshuusei — solarblade @ 8:30 pm

karennagasshoudan

Track Listing

  1. Karen na Gasshoudan
  2. Annie Laurie
  3. Kikyuu ni Notte Dokomademo

1. Karen na Gasshoudan

The single begins with the main theme of the stageplay that Nanami Tanabe, Ayano Hamaura, Mizuki Murota, Riko Yamagishi, Rikako Sasaki, Kaede Kaga, Risa Yamaki, and Hirona Oura starred in.  Being the only upbeat track on the single, I was curious to how it’d turn out.  For the most part, I enjoyed it despite that it sounds kind of under-made (almost a little like early H!P stageplays).  It still sounds good and the girls sound decent enough with Ayano and Nanami taking up the solos here.  Like I said it doesn’t have the production value H!P’s main songs and that might be turnoff but I still like this tune regardless.

2. Annie Laurie

So the 8 girls get split into two groups of 4 for the rest of the single.  Nanami, Mizuki, Risa, and Hirona take up the first track, Annie Laurie which this and the next track are covers (covers of choir songs?).  Sadly it doesn’t mean the four ladies get solos which is unfortunate because I would’ve loved to hear everyone.  Annie Laurie though was way too simplistic and kind of boring to listen to especially with the raw vocals from the girls.  It just kind of went over my head.

3. Kikyuu ni Notte Dokomademo

The other 4: Ayano, Kaede, Riko, and Rikako got Kikyuu ni Notte Dokomademo and already it sounds a lot more engaging and upbeat than “Annie Laurie” was.  It is just piano by the way xD.  Despite most of the girls are higher toned ladies, it was a little squeaky and I heard Hamachan over all the girls lol.  I also enjoyed that ~lalalalala~ part because they added a clapping part to make it pop more.  Still kind of under-produced but it’s better than the previous track.

 

 

Coming into Karen na Gasshoudan, I wasn’t expecting much especially since “LILIUM” essentially took the spot of awesome stageplay music.  This single in comparison to the other two stageplay CD releases, this felt so under-produced like it was just recorded on the stage with no edits.  The main song is pretty good and it was good enough to make on 2014’s Petit Best which is good to me.  The song is fun and upbeat and is a break from EDM.  Kikyuu ni Notte Dokomademo and Annie Laurie were OK but suffer from no edits and Annie Laurie is a giant borefest.  Overall it was OK, could’ve been handled a little better in the audio department, but still not bad.

 

Hello! Pro Kenshuusei – Oheso no Kuni Kara Konnichiwa/Ten Made Nobore!

Filed under: Hello! Pro Kenshuusei — solarblade @ 8:14 pm

ohesonokunikarakonnichiwa

Track Listing

  1. Oheso no Kuni Kara Konnichiwa
  2. Ten Made Nobore! feat. Juice=Juice

1. Oheso no Kuni Kara Konnichiwa

LOL at Hamaura opening the song in such a victorious way to enter our cool EDM song from the group!  Now looking at the cover, there’s a lot of ladies involved and thought it was going to be all unison like “Ten Made Nobore!” was but hey 8 solos from Ayano Hamaura, Mizuki Murota, Kurumi Yoshihashi, Rie Kaneko, Nanami Tanabe, Fuyuka Kosuga, Rena Ogawa, and Kaede Kaga (some…their last appearance like Kaneko, Yoshihashi, Kosuga, and Tanabe).  The tune is pretty epic and really suited the EDM-style Hello! Project was diving deep into.  The song is hilarious, yet cool at the same time and just crazy catchy.  Definitely my favorite of their A-sides thus far!

2. Ten Made Nobore! feat. Juice=Juice

I’m not sure why they had to include Ten Made Nobore! considering it was their 2nd single but it’s whatever.  The song is pretty light and airy and has a simple idol arrangement which sounds nice, but there’s no solos to be had unlike the main course on this single.  The horns add a cute thing, but I’m just overall tired of it listening to it and is WAY overplayed in 2014.

 

 

As the Kenshuusei’s 3rd single, Oheso no Kuni Kara Konnichiwa is a pretty awesome song for the trainees as it really makes them feel like they’re still H!P members even if it’s not an official thing.  The song is heavy and way catchy and the amount of solos was unexpected but awesome (as of 2015 only one of those girls with a solo is still a KSS).  Now, I’m not sure why Ten Made Nobore! was tacked on besides the possibility that this is a DVD single so both PVs are on it (Ten Made Nobore! was an indies single for the KSS and Juice=Juice simultaneously).  Overall not bad, but Oheso is the song to listen to.

 

Hello! Pro Kenshuusei – Kanojo ni Naritai!!!

Filed under: Hello! Pro Kenshuusei — solarblade @ 8:01 pm

kanojoninaritai

Track Listing

  1. Kanojo ni Naritai!!!
  2. Kanojo ni Naritai!!! (Instrumental)

1. Kanojo ni Naritai!!!

Going back to the Kenshuusei actual debut single, I was expecting everyone to be involved, but this song is actually only sung by 5 members (Karin Miyamoto, Natsumi Taguchi, Aina Otsuka, Nanami Tanabe, and Ayano Hamaura.  Now the song is VERY upbeat and reminds me a lot of S/mileage’s “Uchouten LOVE” which wasn’t too far apart from one another lol.  The only solos were for Karin, Ayano, and Nanami but it still was a pretty energetic song and while for a while it grated on my nerves because of how overplayed it was in concerts, it’s still a catchy song!

 

 

I would’ve never thought that the Eggs (or Kenshuusei at this point in time) would EVER release something of their own and it turns out not so bad!  Kanojo ni Naritai!!! as a debut is not bad, does get tiresome after a while, but not a bad song once you’re used to the energy and overload of synths!

 

Hello Pro! Kenshuusei feat. Juice=Juice – Ten Made Nobore! June 21, 2013

Filed under: Hello! Pro Kenshuusei,Juice=Juice — solarblade @ 8:36 pm

tenmadenobore

Track Listing

  1. Ten Made Nobore! / Hello Pro! Kenshuusei feat. Juice=Juice
  2. Ten Made Nobore! / Juice=Juice
  3. Ten Made Nobore! (Instrumental)

1. Ten Made Nobore! / Hello Pro! Kenshuusei feat. Juice=Juice

So this single is considered the Kenshuusei’s (or H!P’s trainees) second single and Juice=Juice’s 3rd indies…weird.  Ten Made Nobore! for the Kenshuusei is a bit of a change after their first single “Kanojo ni Naritai!!” where it went from all that energy to a bit more of a softer and slightly cheesier track.  It’s kind of like an album song from a S/mileage album because it’s all sung in unison for one thing and the sound just kind of suits them.  It’s not an offensive song but I kind of got tired of listening to it after a while.

2. Ten Made Nobore! / Juice=Juice

I was hoping there’d be a musical difference between the two versions but that doesn’t seem to really happen.  The biggest difference is of course it’s just the 6 of them singing.  After their first two singles to come into this song, is also a big dropoff because I don’t really feel this song suits them.  I’m also a little disappointed that Yuka and Akari didn’t get ANY solo lines in the song which makes me frown >.<.  I still don’t really care for the song much right now.

You know, this single was a bit meh to me!  I feel like for both sides of the coin (Kenshuusei and J=J), this was just slightly underwhelming.  Granted, Ten Made Nobore! lyrically makes more sense for the Kenshuusei like “Kanojo ni Naritai!!” was for them so I can see this being performed a lot.  HOWEVER, for Juice=Juice, this seems to come as at a strange time because they announced their major label debut after this, so it seems so uncharacteristic for them to be doing this IMHO.  Oh well lol.