Payrin’s! Talk about something that I just plain don’t get to post about enough. If you’d asked me a couple of years ago if that would be the case, I’d call you a silly billy and tweak your nose and laugh heartily, for of course this thing that I liked right from the get-go would be something that would be super active and all over the site. And brother, would I have been wrong!
It’s all good. I take my Paryin’s when I can get it, and today is one of those days. It’s not clear what the occasion is, but I’ll never turn down fresh video from a group that I keep on permanent blast just in case they do something cool and good, in this case a double live shot from December’s year-ending one-man:
The Cyclone is a small black box theater in a Shibuya basement which, according to the posters it uses for wallpaper, has played host to gigs by just about everyone over the past 20 years, including Cthonic, Crossfaith, Abigail Williams and every chika idol unit you’ve ever cared about. This past Saturday, it also hosted Yukueshirezutsurezure’s Emergency One Man Live, the emergency being Futamaruya Shidare’s sudden exit from the group.
The Cyclone’s capacity is 300, which seems to have been determined not by some safety conscious fire marshal, but in response to a challenge to see how many people one could stuff into the space, shoulder-to-shoulder, wall-to-wall.
I don’t usually like to do bias* too hard around here, you guys. It’s not fair to the huge population of idols idoling away in idoldom to be too terrible discriminate in who gets shared and to what extent and with how many words in the intro to make the post longer. But when it comes to Tsurezure, and when it comes to Shidare, and when it comes to the chance to witness a farewell live from an official source, well, I’ll go ahead and endorse those fan club dues all day.
So in the Great Idol Purge of 2019, one of the key casualties for lovers of the dreamy pop sound and highly ambitious multimedia art projects was HAMIDASYSTEM, my personal Idol of the Year for 2018 and a growing presence among the I-like-good-things set. The announcement was a really sad one — how could this just up and go away? we cried through gnashed teeth.
Well, as it turns out, we might need to re-tool those expectations just a little bit, because it seems like the result is more of a “oh okay, neat” than a “/throws self into traffic”.
First up! HAMIDASYSTEM, or something called that, is, uh, kind of sticking around: Continue reading
Please allow me to apologize to one of my low-key favorite things in idol, going all the way back to when random YouTube dives were all you really had to compare to the handful of English-language resources for chika idol: UNDER BEASTY, I done you wrong, and I’m here today to make it right. We need to catch up!
Gah, where to begin. Well, probably with the fact that they’re about to release their … fifth? Fifth single:
It was a big night in Shibuya tonight, friends, as NECRONOMIDOL held their first live ex Hina and Sari, and used it as a platform for much more than just rolling out new members.
But first, of course, the members. As all but completely given away in the teaser photo earlier in the week, there are two, and one of them is known to many of us as Hibiki, formerly of Gokigen Teikoku, now going as Kenbishi Kunogi. The other, Michelle, is previously unknown but for folks who follow the modeling scene.
This is probably the best collection of photos from the gig: Continue reading
The world of idol is a vast and terrifying place, often all the moreso at moments of uncertainty about how you feel about the world at the moment. And a lot of people are feeling down right now! Yesterday was a bloodbath! So in addition to regular ol’ sonic therapy, let’s prove just how easy it can be to find good things and embrace them.
Ishido Natsumi! I feel like there are maybe five people in the whole of Western wotadom who’ve come across her in the past. Is it because she’s new? She is not new! Is it because she’s bad? She is not bad! Is it because she’s particularly obscure? Not unless you consider being from Nagoya and being as regular a performer as it gets obscure! Well, actually maybe the Nagoya thing hurts her a little bit, what with Tokyo getting the lion’s share of the lion’s share of attention and only total nerds being marks for other local scenes (Osaka ftw).
Anyway, it’s been a long while since we last looked in at Natsumi, so now feels like a good time, especially as … she just released a new album and very helpfully put a trailer online! Continue reading
Let us clear ourselves, emotionally and spiritually, after the horrific purge that was yesterday; those who’ve taken to referring to it as Black Monday certainly have the right of it.
Good thing for us that there are still plenty of idols out there, many of whom do good and cool things that are worthy of being held up as whatever you need to recover, even for a bit. For instance, what of last year’s Corenament winner, Minna no Kodomo-chan, who managed to make a ton of Best Of 2018 noise without taking home any awards? Honoka and Cinnamon are still kicking out there, and they’re still the front of loud and chaotic music, and their performances are still, well, kind of inexplicable:
Fully recognizing that the back panels make choreography even on a big, open stage a challenge, can you imagine trying to do much more than what they already do on a space that large, with a band around to boot? Hence it really is all about the sound — well, the sound and the inexplicable image of those two girls with those things on their backs kind of turning and twirling and tilting and stuff — and letting their one-of-a-kind music win out when you need it.
We took some hits yesterday, friends. Old favorites are gone, and there’s chaos surrounding what we once felt so certain about. As you can see, there are in fact ways left to us to move on.
Happy new year! I know it’s the 5th, but spare me your malcontent recriminations — we can wish each other well all the time, not just in the immediate afterglow of balls dropping and the people you spent a couple of weeks rounding up for a surprisingly affordable private party in a very accessible location all deciding within 10 minutes of each other that they really should get home, it’s late, and you realize how old you’re getting and how amazingly lame your friends have become, so you drag yourself and your partner, your lone holdout, halfway across town (“it’s on the way home!” you tell yourselves) to another neighborhood where no private parties, per se, are to be found, but instead lots of well-lubricated revelers and “specials” that can only be described as such in a context akin to “I feel really special when I’m singled out for larceny” and a very friendly bartender who insists on doing shots with you, all within a 15-minute window because there’s a last train that you absolutely must catch. It’s pretty simple!
The first week of the year was a good one for idol. I actually skipped a couple of posts on account of working for a bona fide lunatic whose conception of “catch up back in the office” is actually “let’s very quickly find plural projects that must be completed within 48 hours,” but I hope to be able to make it up. That’s right — what you see here before you is actually real-deal legit Weekender material! Correct, no need to cheer, Weekender stuff is the fill-in! Yeah!
We had an amazing first Fun of 2019, too, so go play it, then take all this in stride, do what you need to do on account of it being time for a nice ol’ break from the slog of modernity, even if for a few hours, and look ahead to what the gods owe us — a year that doesn’t make just about everybody want to scream in existential agony!
You’re wrong if you aren’t totally excited about the double A-side from Zenbu Kimi no Sei Da:
Ah, Q’ulle, the dance-troupe-turned-full-blown-idols-with-a-metal-vocalist-among-their-ranks, source of almost boundless fun and remarkably consistent quality going back … holy crap, a pretty long-ass time at this point, and without a single graduation (despite broken bones, even!). Good on them.
While many an idol struggles upon being taken into the deeply exploitative embrace of Avex, Q’ulle’s one of the projects that’s managed to keep churning. Sure, it’s not at the same dizzying rate as they had pre-major debut, but one could say that about just about any idol thing, even the ones that don’t make the majors. What Q’ulle has done in their almost two years with the company is do idorock about as well as anybody can, across a strong series of releases, and now they’re ready for their second major album, due out Jan. 16. “One Way Dream” here is from that! Continue reading