About the only predictable thing about Dots is that well, they’re not predictable. In the past few weeks, a furious flurry of activities has suddenly sprung from the enigmatic collective of non-corporeal idols, including the announcement that two of the chans are about to move to new planes of existence. Things are happening again in the Dots universe, and they’re happening rapidly.
Late last month, Maniac shared his thoughts on a new Dots song that was posted online. I also really love the song a lot, like a whole lot. It’s an absolutely wondrous burst of the kind of shoegaze purity that gives me life. That song belongs alongside Ride, Lush and of course MBV’s best songs, all archived within the Shoegaze Hall of Fame cause it’s just that good.
But hold on, now there’s a new Dots transmission that just dropped! This new song arrived quietly in the form of an “Image Video”. Fresh off the radiant energy of the previous preview tune, I was of course all aboard for another rush of swirly guitars and wispy vocals, but this is Dots, and you don’t get to make a call on what to expect so easily: Continue reading →
Idol rock is, when you get down to it, a perfect beast. Rock music, for all its historical swagger and bluster and preening, is ultimately about rhythms and hooks, which is why it’s always so easily be re-worked with pop sensibilities for people who might prefer to skip the distortion on a Monday morning. Add on top of that idol and its eminent flexibility, and your result is something that just plain oozes crowd-pleasing … when done right. Just like eggs or pizza, it is possible to get this wonderfully simple formula wrong, and then it is very bad, which deserves credit in itself for being so hard to accomplish.
Q’ulle, though, perhaps the modern doyennes of true idol rock, I don’t know if I’ve ever seen them miss. And this new single out in a couple of weeks has all the hallmarks of being right at the top of their body of work:
There There Theres! I don’t get a ton of opportunity to write about the former Bellring Girls Heart anymore. The main reason is very simple: They don’t do a ton of video anymore, and I haven’t the time to be chasing after every cool live clip anymore. That’s what Jesus invented the Weekender for! Nonetheless, my support for the Aqbi flagship remains unwavering, always hoping for something new and cool and eminently shareable. And here, finally, from their KHIMAIRA one-man, a new song … with live video!
There Theresring Heart never disappoints. Do they ever do bad songs? I’m yet to hear one, from any iteration of the project, and this one comes with the added bonus of harking back to the halcyon days of “Rainy Dance” (an Ultimate Homicidol Playlist favorite!). It’s also going to be their next single, coming out next month (Natalie.mu with the details). If it’s ultimately anything like last year’s epic, I may have to cancel the rest of the year’s Best Of.
In case it hasn’t been obvious, I’ve become a little bit of a BiSH skeptic over the past year or so — even my original support for the last single waned in retrospect. It grieves me, actually; my all-time idol top 10, regardless of whether it’s song-album-video-person-whatever, has BiSH all over it, and I remain an ardent supporter of the idea of BiSH and the incredible barrier-breaking potential that I think they have. This is why, even almost two years into a long run of mostly being disappointed by them, I get the giddies when they spin off new stuff, especially new stuff that appeals directly to my own biases!
I had been meaning to catch up on the latest track from the just-re-debuted mistress, aka now the mistress because what are you gonna do, but let’s take care of that second and instead have a nice long look at the full version of their MV (and song, really) for “Would you kill yourself now?”:
One of my favorite things about the idol scene is how hard people will stan for things that they personally love. Brian, for instance, is one of the world’s great champions of Avandoned; Papermaiden will fight anybody who would besmirch the good name of Tsurezure, especially Shidare. I can appreciate that level of dedication! I can also appreciate its ability to bring somebody back from the brink — in this case, Viz Major, who looked like he was leaving us to become a hopeless K-pop knob, came home to the dulcet tones of monogatari:
Remember a few weeks back and I was like “oh wow okay good” about the news of a fourth major single coming up any day now from digital idolcore masters PassCode? It wasn’t that it wasn’t good news, just mundane news, of the type that makes you want to find another thing to go more excited about, because this is (/checks notes) PassCode’s fourth single since joining Universal, for whom they’ve also released (/checks notes again), well, I guess it depends on how you count “new,” but a lot. The point is a lot. That’s cool. What they haven’t done before is a double A-side, until now:
9月12日（水） PassCode Major 4th Single 「Tonight / Taking you out」リリース決定❗️ 初となる両A面シングルお楽しみに✨
Like, it’s not the most exciting update, either, and I wouldn’t blame you for feeling a little shorted and wanting to go do something else instead. Goodness knows that I do! However, the aforementioned double-A, plus cover art (representing the same, I assume) that’s one part cyber Rubix cube and one part ephemeral angel of death. For some reason, I find it completely appropriate. Now give us the full MV releases outside of Japan at the very beginning, please and thanks.
It was only a few weeks ago that punk rock idol unit NO MARK made me yes mark the hell out. Did I do the same thing when I heard this here?
I can’t possibly make my reaction to this any clearer than to say that I had no idea that Bad Religion had gotten into the idol game. What a good-but-unconventional song! It’s also (obviously) their third digital single, which is quite a nice chunk of output for such a short lifespan so far. Good for them!
Among the many notable idols that you should be flocking to TIF to see this weekend are idols that you probably never heard of, probably never even thought to check out. But if you’re there for fun rock sounds and those crucial acts that smudge the line between “idols the way that people usually think of that” and “blood-spitting thrashcore chika darlings,” you’ll be pleased to know that there are options!
In this case, I, uh … well, the truth is, this group isn’t totally unknown around here. Just hold on a second (and let that terrible dad joke wash over your soul).
What a title. And given how much vintage Pantera I’ve been listening to over the last month, willingly and un, I’m doing this incredible groove riff in my head that’s probably going to be nothing like what the Frupoche band puts together, but that’s fine, it’s Shiori and Mina singing together again, and it’s going to be loud and pretty intense and that makes me want to go punch a kitten in excitement.