Papermaiden’s Nightmare Fanfic Yields the Greatest Horrors of All

The setting is the Maniac Mansion. It’s the wee hours of the morning. All is calm, the sun is bathing us in kind rays before his overzealous hours.

Wooden floorboards creak, waking up the master of the house. A beret-wearing bespectacled, unhinged creature stands still in the doorway, blocking the most obvious issue.

“What the… Papermaiden, what are you doing here?”

“Oh, I let myself in through the staff door on your secret stage on the roof.”

Maniac begrudgingly starts looking for a notepad, jotting down “Buy better locks and install them ASAP,” yet another bullet point on his never-ending list of renovations.

“That clears up part of the how, but none of the what.”

“Well, I just stumbled upon a new idol soloist and I was wondering if I could cover them.” Continue reading

We Interview Idols: Papermaiden Meets Koutei Camera Girl Drei

A few weeks ago, Steven Tanaka’s good tastes and altruistic hobbies graced Canada again in the form of Next Music From Tokyo volume 12. This edition’s lineup was a “best of” of sorts, having three bands from last year’s 10th edition, as well as newcomers Lucie, Too and Steven’s favourite idol act Koutei Camera. Koutei Camera Girl Drei (Twitter) was also part of the pan-Canadian tour for their debut this past October, and this time, we managed to interview the group and their manager.

Before leaping to the interview, I would like to thanks my dear translator and friend Hazuki S. for her interpretation and translation, as well as Jas, Ramy T Talata, Catch my Heart and Pacio to ‘npa for graciously taking the time to answer our questions.

Jas, as we start, I have a small question: I was wondering what are the current member colours of Kouteca?

Jas: There are no colours.

Well, that was fast (laughs). I guess I will have to update the fan wikis with that information. On that same topic, Ramy, you were initially announced as a member of Koutei Camera Drei under the name “Sharapova” but I have never seen you use it for your social medias (Twitter and Instagram), is there a certain reason for this?

Ramy T Talata: I don’t use it anymore

Jas: Actually, it was only at the beginning, when we didn’t reveal her face yet. “Sharapova” was a completely different person, who was later replaced by Ramy.

You’re an important part of the Kouteca history, both in the original group (briefly), the first spin off (Gal) and now in Drei and Gal concurrently. What is your take on the difference between “Girl” and “Gal”?

Ramy T Talata: I feel that the music is different even though both are rap music. It’s a little difficult to explain, they’re so different. I’ve changed between groups many times.

Catch my heart: Gal is more hip-hop, a music style that the crowd can get into with us. It’s not us trying to act like we’re cool, but we try to make it into something we can all enjoy and connect to together. Drei has more of a performance to show. Gal is mostly rap, but Drei has more singing in it.

Jas: Pacio joined because she loves music, Ramy and Catch joined because they love to sing. They didn’t know about rap. They listened to it for the first time after joining.

Why did you decide to join this particular group?

Ramy T Talata: I found out about it through a friend. Actually, she was invited by someone that used to be in the group but wasn’t really interested in the group’s style. When I told her that I wanted to become an idol, she brought me with her and introduced me to the company. My interest grew after hearing about the group.

Catch my heart: I’ve always loved singing, and always wanted to become an artist. My friend in Tokyo, who is also an idol, told me about the auditions, so I went for it.

This is your second time in Canada. What was different about your debut in Canada compared to the one in Japan?

Catch my heart: My very first live was in Canada. Everyone was so energetic and cheered along. I made some mistakes but it was really fun so I didn’t feel like it was a failure. In Canada, everyone has fun even if they don’t understand Japanese. When we went back to Japan, there are more people who understand, so the crowd can get really excited or really cold when they notice the mistakes. However, our debut was great in both counties.

Ramy T Talata: I never believe in my life that I would debut overseas, just the thought of leaving Japan never even crossed my mind. I wasn’t sure what to do. I wondered if I would be able to convey my feelings and messages in a completely different place. I was very anxious because I didn’t even know what kind of country Canada was. In Japan, many people already loved the first Kouteca. We were going to be a new group with new members, whose charms were very different from the original ones. I had to climb over that obstacle and the expectations. There was a lot of pressure. Many fans of the original group came to see us and were very happy. This pushed me to work even harder. I became more motivated.

What were you looking forward to do in Canada?

Catch my heart: With Pacio joining our group, our image became cooler. It’s our first time to show this image in Canada, and I was looking forward to how it would be received. On a personal side, I was excited to see the people I met last October again.

Ramy T Talata: Although we came back with the same group, this time we have a new member. I feel like the three of us are a great representation of Koutei Camera Girl Drei. I was really looking forward to show the new Drei, or rather the new lineup. There will be people who will see us for the first time, and those who have already seen us. It may be difficult to ask them to come see us in Japan, but I really want to be able to reach them, to have them know about us and be interested. Even if it’s just one person. I’m really excited to show everyone our performance.

The previous Kouteca was more colourful, whereas Drei has a polished and darker image. How would you describe, in a word, the concept of Kouteca?

Catch my heart: I think “cool” would be the right word.

Ramy t talata: I want us to be able to reach that “cool” image.

pacio to ‘npa, welcome to Kouteca! How do you feel about touring overseas for the first time?

pacio to ‘npa: How do I feel?! (hysterical laughing) Hm… How do I feel? I’ve really been looking forward to it.

Were you a fan of Kouteca before joining the group?

pacio to ‘npa: No, not at all!

Looking at your Instagram and Twitter, I noticed that you do a fair bit of modelling. Can you tell us about your work as a model?

Jas: She worked as a model when she wasn’t involved in any other activities. She wasn’t working as a professional model, and it isn’t something that she would be pursuing as a major job. She may model in the future if the offer arises, but her main job is concentrated on music.

What is different during lives in Canada and in Japan?

pacio to ‘npa: The people are different. They cheer and sing at different points and timing during the songs.

Jas: We don’t expect anyone in the crowd to follow any set rules, we don’t have any. We want everyone to enjoy their experience how they want to, to have fun, and to not trouble those around them.

Jas, I’d like to hear more about your process. How do you come up with your song titles?

Jas: There is no link with the lyrics and the title. I like it better that way. Having a love song titled “Love Song” is just too normal. I want people to feel the song, the title should just sound good to your ears. I believe that the title doesn’t necessarily need to have a specific meaning to it.

Would you like to perform in all the cities you have named songs after?

Jas: Not in particular. For Toronto, I wrote the lyrics at a shady Burger King around 1:00 or 2:00 a.m. “Toronto Lot” rolled off the tongue better. I don’t even know if it makes proper sense. I wrote this because I wanted to be in Toronto for a longer time. My inspiration was everything that happened to me in Toronto, but it’s not written as actual events.

As a foreign fan, there is very little information available in English about Koutei Camera Actress. Can you tell us more about their concept?

Jas: Koutei Camera is the name of all idol units under the Tapesok Records Label. They do a sort of underground club music that started with rap. Actress is under another management, but I still produce for them. The girls that are more interested in acting are in Actress, and if they would like to make music, they would join Tapesok Records. While Kouteca Drei is club music, Gal is more hip-hop, but I kind of do whatever I want to with their music. Actress are the ones that are closest to the “idol” image, they do pop music.

Maison Book Girl Loses No Steam for the Rainy Season

It’s summer. The days and the nights grow more humid every day, but it’s the suffocating temperature that can only be eased by the rain that makes the transition between seasons so difficult.

I woke up to the buzzing of a LINE notification. As I groggily grabbed my phone to silence it, my mood went from annoyed to elated when it wasn’t simply a photo, but an announcement from Maison Book Girl that they had a brand new MV out! This title, “Raincoat and the Bird Without a  Neck”, per the official English translation, is on their single “Elude”, slated for a June 20 release. Notable from the LINE announcement was the collaboration with Japanese fashion brand ANREALAGE (Cococo was a fan, according to the interview we conducted a year ago), whose love for stark monochromatic pieces and geometric silhouettes goes hand-in-hand with the signature visuals of Maison Book Girl.

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A Three-MV Journey through the Yukueshirezu – Story – zure

Although my thesis isn’t anywhere near the completion point I’d like it to be, my Tsurezure fever is as fiery as it ever was.

In case you don’t read the main Codomomental Twitter, the producer has said he wants the fans to think of “Paradise Lost” as a complement to “Miss Sins” and “Loud Asymmetry”, as they are intended as a triptych.

Now, because we enjoy speculations almost as much as we adore idols here at Homicidols, I’d like to piece together the story that links these three songs. In the future, I’d love to cover the timeline from the arrival of Tsuyame and Cococo through Post-Catastrophy, as all videos converge through recurring use of similar motifs, but that will wait, as all the MV have their individual stories, transforming this into a laborious enterprise.

For now, story time! Continue reading

It Has Finally Happened; The Loose Ends Are Secured

It seems like Judge Judy gifs are good at summoning the idol gods (by which I likely mean producers): my dearest Yukueshirezutsurezure has finally released their first single in six months and it’s accompanied by a timely music video:

And it appears I sacrificed the accuracy of my colour vision to get this MV because their outfits are red. *Nervous laughter* As an Ultramarine through and through, I am now worried the fandom will change name to “The Garnets?” Continue reading

Idol Eulogy: Thank you Cococo!

I should be getting ready for the Koutei Camera Drei show I’m going to see tonight, but I still can’t shake the feeling of dread. Losing both Guso Drop and Cococo on the same weekend is really tough.

So basically, I have gone rogue and despite Sari being the democratically elected oshi of Homicidols.com, I want to dedicate an entire post to Cococo’s departure because she’s plain amazing. Continue reading

Fashion Fortnight Flash #2

How have two weeks passed by already? I have been extremely busy reading, writing stuff (or attempting to, anyway), and going to film festival but that won’t stop me from bringing back your favourite the only fashion column of this website.

Pikarin this month:

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Fashion Fortnight Feature: We Need to Talk about This Dress

Hello! It’s Papermaiden again. Thank you for the warm welcome you gave me for the previous article. This time, it’s a feature rather than a flash: We’ll focus on one topic, in occurrence, the Love Letter One Piece by Galaxxxy, from their 2016 Spring/Summer collection.

A red sleeveless dress with lavender envelops printed all over. The armholes surrounded by frills and, just like the Peter Pan collar, are white.

This is the official stockphoto, so at least we can see the colors accurately at least once.

If this dress looks familiar, it’s probably because last year, we’ve seen it twice in very prominent positions — namely in the music videos for BPM15Q’s “Hakuchuumu” and Oyasumi Hologram’s “Neuromancer”.

When I first saw the dress, I just assumed it was from a cute, otome-like brand despite the flashy colours of the print. I went through two years of MILK look books from 2016 and 2015, nothing of the sort popped up. This obstacle fueled my ongoing frustration and convinced me to dedicate an entire article to the thing. Continue reading

Fashion Fortnight Flash #1

Hello friends! Maniac here. Papermaiden had such a good time with that NSLE interview that I said, pitch me an idea for something that you’d like to write regularly, and she said, I want to write about fashion and stuff, and I said, knock yourself out, I bet people will like that. So give it a read and let her know what you think!

Welcome to Fashion Fortnight. In this bimensual column, you’ll find a (very self-indulgent) summary of what happened with idols in their para-musical jobs related to subculture and modelling. You may think of the Flash-type columns as a way to assemble all the great visual publications you’ve missed because you weren’t looking! In the Fashion Fortnight Features, you’ll find (most likely self-indulgent as well) more focused investigations into a specific topic or item that has been all the rage and is related to our beloved Homicidols.

Without further ado, get the links and some previews after the jump! Continue reading

Familiar Faces in Unexpected Places for This Tuesday WTF

Good morning, fellow disciples of the cute and disturbed! It’s Papermaiden, back for a second punctual post before I finally am on top of my things and starting my own column every fortnight or so.

This week, we’re doing something a little different, graciously sponsored by The Ender Partner talent at finding really dubious stuff on the Internet.

So Partner the End drags my overworked ass in front of the TV, asking me for 25 minutes of my time to show me something he refuses to disclose anything about. Here we are, watching a guy (King Lionel) trying to become an Internet celebrity. His whole act is based on parodying either pop songs or remixing children traditional songs to make them sound like club anthems. He managed to land a deal for a show sponsored by the Ontario French Television network on the web and their cable network. In this episode, he was invited by a Japanese management company who just wanted to meet him and he uses this trip to make himself known to the general public.

But the bit that interests us starts right here:

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