While We’re at IT, Let’s Also Meet 99%LOVER

The best idol discoveries are the ones that happen because somebody you’ve been following for a while happens to suddenly appear in another project that they tweet about like it’s going out of style (and also are probably obligated so to do). I refer in this case to this young lady, who was out of nowhere tweeting about something called 99%LOVER (Twitter) about a month back, which led to a follow, which led to … well, like, you know how most of the time the big lure in idol music is either the music itself or the ability of said idols to actually sing said music? What about the times when it’s that, plus really cool and intense dance routines?

Just look at this stuff:

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Well, I Guess We Can Say That mistress Is Going out in Style

This is a dumb post about mistress, you guys. It was originally going to be a review-cum-celebration of the second annual mistFES, and was in fact originally titled “How the Hell Does mistress Do It?” because I could never get my head around just how a (frankly) mid-tier idol project was able to get like half of everybody even remotely interesting to the same place/s at the same time/s, pay for all of that and make it an experience that people were into. Like, look at this lineup and tell me that you wouldn’t prefer that to TIF or @JAM:

Anyway, it’s all moot now because mistress is disbanding next month:

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I’m Unreasonably Happy about This New GARUDA Track

Not to be outdone by her friends / other project and their ever-ongoing chunks of new material, Yuffie, the idol who in her solo moments dons the guise of GARUDA, the only outright industrial idol* has another song ready for our ears, though our ears may not be entirely ready for it:

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Oshi Digest #42: It’s Saki Time!

Yes, friends, in a shocking conclusion that absolutely nobody could have seen coming because there was definitely zero prior planning to facilitate it no siree bob, Saki of 2& and ex of Guso Drop is the new Official Oshimen of Homicidols.com by dint of her stunning sneak-attack victory over Sari from NECRONOMIDOL the other night in London. Truly one of the great Judas moments in history! And we are the beneficiaries!

Before diving in to the Sakixperience, just to reiterate, she’s going to hold this title for at least the next month and change, until the next Queen of the Scene competition. Because incumbency matters, I’m going to tilt the scales a bit in Saki’s favor, give her a genuine advantage over the competition. Oshi’s Edge, let’s call it. And if Saki can hold on despite the challenge, she’ll be in position to keep the title for up to a year, barring the next Money in the Bank briefcase holder pulling a … well, pulling a Saki and catching her at an inopportune time.

With all of that out of the way, let’s get down to the Digest! Continue reading

Let’s Remember Some Idols: Hauptharmonie

Man, this is a tough one. For you newer folks, this may be the kind of unique treat that makes you rue the vicissitudes of idol, the way that many of us from 2014-15 felt about the original BiS (only without the same level of makes-the-scene-happen influence, natch). Veterans may recall Hauptharmonie, though; veterans of Ye Olde Website may recall them as one of Maniac’s most heart-stopping idol projects, an almost impossible synergy of jazz and blues and big-band swing and ska and … well, and idol.

This is what the world misses without Hauptharmonie in it:

That was the lead from their second EP and second full album, the delicious Herz ueber Kopf, which felt at the time like a genuine breakthrough recording. Much as I had with Avandoned, I was a little bit reluctant to cover Hauptharmonie — celebrate personally, yes, but cover? — given that they were never really a rock unit per se. But listen to that song. Watch that video. Tell me that the attitude and approach weren’t there, even in limited quantities. That’s the kind of music that made old biddies back in the day declaim jazz as the devil’s music. It’s totally wonderful. Continue reading

Let’s All Say Hi to POPPING EMO

Doop-dee-doop, scrolling through Twitter … hello, what’s this?

Pro tip, friends: There are lots of ways to stumble over new idol stuff, but the most reliable will always be what other idols tweet about, especially when it’s groups promoting mixed shows. In this case, it was POPPING EMO that stood out in particular, because what a name. A few clicks later, and: Continue reading

Yeah, KING RAGE Is Pretty Loud

I ask you on this dreary Sunday, friends, to revisit the resurrected Checkmate, now known as KING RAGE*, who had previously only teased out a little smidge of explosive face-kicking idol power as part of the reveal of their new form. Then I ask you to please press the play button below, and hold on to your butts:

What the crap! What a neatly dissonant song. I feel oddly moved to turn that guitar riff into my ringtone, the chorus into my kitchen buzzer and those growled-up verses into my morning alarm. Good work, KING RAGE. Now keep doing stuff like that.

*Because it’s all-caps, and because it’s a hilarious name, I know that I’ll always say it aloud as KING RAAAAAGGGGGEEEE

Kerrie Interviews Idols: Maison Book Girl

You know, it’s funny. The other day, I was looking at my old Maison Book Girl tweets. I was trying to find one specific tweet but I also found this, from almost two years ago:

Well, then. Imagine 2018 Kerrie telling naive “never attended an idol gig and probably never will” 2016 Kerrie that, not only did she get her UK tour, but she also got to have a chat with Maison Book Girl too!

It’s been two weeks since I attended the first leg of Maison Book Girl’s tour, at Birmingham’s Hare and Hounds. Hopefully, that was enough to process my feelings that wasn’t just “I would sell my soul for their smiles,” but really, it was such a wild ride. Arriving about four hours before showtime, I got to see the makings of an idol gig, somewhat. The soundchecks, the debates between the UK and Japanese staff, the occasional MBG popping in and out. As mundane as it probably would have seemed to a veteran, to me, it felt surreal and unforgettable. Up until now, I had only seen the public view of live shows.

I’m not too good at reviewing live shows, but I know that’s not really what you came for. Again, after witnessing the various test-runs beforehand, when I watched the final production come alive on stage, I was fascinated. Continue reading

HAMIDASYSTEM, Episode 2

It’s time again, children, for an installment in 2018’s single most interesting idol performance project. Today, we get SODA’s song and story. Gird your loins for more delicious post-rock-gaze-haze-dream-whatever, for it is indeed beautiful, and makes a wonderful accompaniment to the text (below):


You get YouTube over Soundcloud because they might get paid this way

There’s also a video clip! Continue reading

Under Beasty Made It to Their Fourth Anniversary

This started off as a Weekender joint, but I had one of those moments where you realize that you’ve been forgetting about idols that you really like simply because there’s too much dang idol and other stuff, and they’ve been a little off to the side of the radar, and whose fault is that but your own? Exactly.

Under Beasty, The Super-Indie Idols Who Could, one of those groups that I’ve pretty much always and pretty much always will champion if for no greater reason than their ability to prove that even the totally self-produced can make this wild game work, have had a pretty good ride of things over the years. They’re not even super-indie anymore, having hooked up with actual management along the way and gotten a strong enough budget to release stuff like this and put on decently sized one-mans.

So consider this a celebration of them, in a way, because this right here is what I wanted to Weekender:

But there’s more going on, and they deserve a fuller post. Continue reading