We Friggin’ Told You That the New YONEKO Single Was Great

It’s highly likely that what I’m sharing with you here is something that you already know, but for the sake of posterity and because we want her to have nice things and not at all because Derek asked nicely, I here am following up on Brian’s lovely review of YONEKO’s excellent new single with the fully fledged real-deal MV for it.

Just, like, definitely go read the review and then come back, fully prepared mentally and physically, for this assault of awesome:

Wait for it …

Why make more of it? The young woman is talented and creative as hell. We love her, you love her — now take this and go make a bunch of other people who’ve never even heard of her before love her, too.

Well, I guess the fact that YONEKO is now officially moving into the post-idol phase of her career (apparently in all projects?), so technically this is the last we’ll post about her in a dedicated way, but that’s nonsense and of course we’ll keep the updates coming, YONEKO occupies a special place for us and it doesn’t matter how or when or why she performs, we’ll be there.

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Let’s Get to Know Night Owl

So remember back in 2017 Year in Review in Review*, when I said that I was making it a new year’s resolution to do more for idol debuts in 2018? And then I did and 2018 was like the best debut year since … 2014? 2012? It was amazing. So much good stuff, though not all of it panned out. Well, I’m making something of the same commitment for this year; I have a tough time keeping up with news these days, but maybe I can keep up with cool debuts as they happen? Sure.

Which brings us to Night Owl (Twitter)! Who … did not debut anytime near now, but in fact back in August, during the period that we shall always refer to in hushed tones as “Maniac’s Interregnum.” And then I had them on my official radar since, golly, at least November if my tab history is to be believed. But more on that. This is what they got:

Oh that’s interesting! What are they about? Continue reading

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The BiS MV Arrived and Is Everything a 90s Kid Could Hope For

We did it! Despite the very best efforts of the world to destroy humanity before the new decade was more than a few hours old, we got to the day when the full album of the fully rebooted BiS came to fruition with the MV that will lead it into the sales wars. And what an MV! Maybe you saw it during yesterday’s aborted leak. Maybe you saw enough that, when combined with the title, you had no choice but to think of certain late-90s punk touchstones and tributes to an aesthetic that never should have died. I don’t want to say that every little thing in it is completely deliberate, but come on. Just look at this:

Yep, that definitely hit all of the right notes. Maybe the only thing truly missing is one of the actors suddenly having their face twist into a horrifying hell rictus, or a lo-def shot inexplicably shaking and turning to convey wackiness or something. Otherwise, from colors to setting to styling to the exploitative use of little people in the guise of show business icons, I’m back in the waning years of rock music’s last best decade.

And the music? Well yeah, that’s good too. I think we all figured that’d be the case, right? Like, they got the less saucy stuff out of the way on the last album preview — given all the rest of their body of work so far, for BiS3 to drop anything less than an all-out punk barrage would be the biggest surprise of all. And yeah, all in all I do think that this album has shaped up to be the best by a group named BiS in quite a while, though we should wait for the official release just in case Watanabe decides to pull some shenanigans.

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Hey, Let’s Look at the New WILL-O’ Video Stuff Together!

It’s 2020 now, and all of this is firmly in the past, but I think it’s worth mentioning the wild ride that WILL-O’ went on over the course of the previous year. A lot has changed in the now three-plus years since Alloy was originally formed, and though WILL-O’ as WILL-O’ is fairly well-established at this point, I think it’s fair to say that change is the most consistent thing about the group. Well, change and doing great rock-related idol work, that is, and I mean that literally because you’ll remember that I held up “POP’N” as my personal favorite song of 2019.

And as that was going on, they were also releasing a new EP to close the year! I kind of forgot about it (it was sitting in my wait-until-an-MV-drops pile), then the MV finally did come a little on the late side, so here I go rhetorically returning the favor! But also they did some interesting stuff in the meantime, so waiting turned out to be smart. Anyway, the MV: Continue reading

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When Naruhaworlds Collide – Why Idol Fans Are Excited For Hyadain x GANG PARADE

Happy new year! Japan have already rang in the new decade and with it, a menagerie of new music.

Rock and alternative style idols are no stranger to unexpected collaborations, from BiS and Hijokaidan to You’ll Melt More and… also Hijokaidan. But in this subculture, mainstream breakthroughs are the real sucker punch to longtime fans of girls dancing to alt rock with a crowd of about 30 people.

So, fresh off their major label debut, GANG PARADE have dropped an announcement that their second digital single will be a joint composition between Scrambles’ very own Matsukuma Kenta with a very special guest…

Mastermind behind Momoiro Clover Z: Hyadain! Continue reading

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All-but-final Songs and Details on the New BiS Album

Ah, and now we reach the point in the promotional machine when a new release (specifically, a WACK release) is laid almost completely bare before the world and all of its details are known and we get to speculate wildly about what might fill the otherwise-empty informational crevices. Behold, the new BiS album, now more than just a bunch of stuff on Soundcloud:

A title! A track list! A … a cover that looks a lot like it’s really playing up an appropriate punk rock association while also trying very hard to avoid being sued by Green Day! Good lord, after these tracks, there’s just the one left to show off, and it could also be a Green Day reference if you’re willing to stretch a little, and I’m guessing that’s where the MV will come from, the only question really being when, it being a real shame that we’re still more than a month from the release date, I say again.

But let’s listen to the new songs, which you can also still download for a hot minute (I’m sorry!): Continue reading

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Happiness Is Listening to a Wagamama Rakia Acoustic Album

As very dutifully reported in a recent Weekender, among various other endeavors swirling around Wagamama Rakia, they had a new EP, and an acoustic one at that, heading for release. It hit streaming services on Christmas Day, but I only just got around to listening to it yesterday, and while doing so I thought that, you know, maybe this exactly how we should be closing things out for 2019 — stripped of the usual noise, the songs in this case give the members a chance to really showcase their talents, and the simpler renditions of popular standards gives the group’s work an interesting spin.

Anyway, put this on while you have about 20 minutes of stuff to do, and tell me that your experience isn’t improved by a factor of about 7,000:

To give this post extra heft, here’s their end-of-year message to fans:

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Download This Song from the mishmash Before It’s Gone

Ah, the mishmash, one of my two or three favorite groups that basically just performs all the time and never releases anything, thereby leaving me to drift hopelessly through a directionless life with neither succor nor support. I wish they did more stuff! It’s hard to stay mad at them, though, because they rub shoulders with excellent company and I think are largely satisfied with being their best selves in a milieu that appreciates them. But anyway! There’s music, and you can get it. Thanks for a retweet campaign involving one of those demos that I’m always kvetching about, they have a full song to listen to, and then to download for free, and hey look get to it:

Continue reading

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Owaranaide, Yoru Like You’ve Never Heard Them Before

So as I mentioned the other day, one of the perks of being a fancy idol blogger is that you get into communication with the behind-the-scenes folks, both to build personal relationships (people like each other, imagine!) and to share information. So it is that we know about Owaranaide, Yoru in the first place, in fact, and how their latest single (dropped yesterday) came into my life.

I warn you: If you follow OWAYORU at all, you may have an idea of what it is they sound like, what they do, etc. Put aside those notions, friend, and think to yourself, now why would Maniac be so coy about this and so excited all at once? What is it about this strange person that I should turn into an inference about what I’m about to hear? And if the answer to that question happens to land you on such things as “Dance for Philosophy” and “Especia” and “what could have been for Hauptharmonie,” which is to say, how about a little smoothness to your day, wouldn’t that be a nice way to close the year and start a week all at once?

Yes:

What a pleasant surprise. And the best part is that it’s by Candye Syrup’s composer-san, too, which goes to show you that talent is talent and that some people simply cannot be contained. I just wish there were more than the one track! And maybe some video! And then another thing like this in short order!

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Who and What the Hell Are the lyrics?

You guys, I swear I was minding my own business this morning, and then along comes ol’ Viz Major to ruin things and inadvertently provide the lede:

What the hell was that! I thought he was making up this whole “poetrycore” business too (I can sympathize!) until I bothered with a minute’s worth of homework, but yes, it’s true, and so is the Yuyoyuppe thing, and while the complete lack of individual identities suggests that the lyrics and not-use of the I word in any of their press does suggest that this may not be an idol thing, they’re published on an idol label (for Spotify, at least) and sound idol, so I’m giving them the benefit of the doubt and also me an opportunity to bring this wonderful injection of beautiful pain into your lives. Continue reading

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