It has been a roller coaster of a morning in the alt-idol breaking news department, but nothing is so welcome after the official departure of the original alt-Oshi than an international guerrilla release by Yanakoto Sotto Mute.
It’s already available on iTunes so why are you still here?
Once again proving their designation as the Perfect Modern Idols , Yanamute’s unexpected album drop comes with the promise of an EP per month in the run up to Christmas. “Stain”, the first track on this morning’s surprise offering, is a stunner, so these are not b-side offerings but chill-inducing, A-Grade material.
So if this morning’s big news had you crying into your coffee, thanks to Yanamute we can now face the weekend with smiles on our faces. Happy freaking Friday!!
Tentenko doesn’t always get a lot of mentions here since she, technically, is a former idol and not a current one. What she is, though, is one of the more quietly productive and increasingly significant voices in the Japanese indie music scene and, when she does perform, it is typically alongside the more prominent names in chika idol.
Recently, however, Tentenko has seen a string of buzzworthy events that may indicate the BiS alumna’s first steps towards global conquest and warrant a mention outside of The Weekender. First was her interview and profile in the mainstream Western media. Sure it was in Vice , and, sure, they played the “weird” card while profiling a Japanese artist, but it was still a substantive and well-researched piece that focused on her music cred.
Hello, Fellow Kids!Supreme Nothing(Brian) here….. As you already know, Maniac took a little break from the site and left Team Homicidols with the keys! So far, we haven’t destroyed the dynasty that’s he’s spent long long, countless hours building, but hey, there’s still time left! It’s been a fun week playing houseguest, and if I might say, I’m pleased with the collaborative efforts that have gone into the last few days here. Kerrie, Papermaiden, and Daemon have been absolute all-stars through this thing and I couldn’t ask for a better gang to enjoy this labor of love with. I feel like I’m in an idol group myself, but no cheki requests please…
One thing Maniac did press upon us that the Weekender must be Weekended properly, so we’ve taken the draft he started and each added a few highlights of our own into the mix. You might even be able to tell who shared what! So ease on back with a beverage of your choice, take a moment to join in on Kerrie’s Friday Fun, peruse the good stuff we’ve included below, and then maybe cut off the computer, put the phone down, and do something personally fulfilling, which might be a kind deed, a hobby, or a nice nap, that’s okay too! Make this weekend yours!
Now onto the Weekender, brought to you by Team Homicidols…
This is the motto of Owaranaide, Yoru, the new project Sha-Yan asked us to look out for as she was winding up activities with Candye Syrup.
The concept of the group is to convey the conflicting feelings of young women who come to Tokyo and struggle in pursuit of their dreams: the loneliness, excitement, and nostalgia for their hometown while surrounded by the chaos of the city.
They have released the instrumental to their first song on Soundcloud:
Every so often, especially back in the early days of the site when every idol giggle felt like a momentous event that had to be shared with the world, I used to share audition information. Here’s a great example from way the heck back in the day. Then and even now, the process by which agencies refill their rosters with talent, and how groups sustain themselves through the inevitable chaos of teenagers’ whims and managers’ improprieties, is fascinating. Also alarming sometimes!
Now, friends, thanks to the unique generosity of Tanaka-san and Aqbi Rec, you too have an opportunity to join an all-male idol group under the There There Theres brand, as long as you’re between the ages of 15 and 22 and aren’t a total jerk:
【祝1stアルバム発売記念】 ゼアゼア曲をカバーする期間限定“メンズ”アイドル「HERE HERE HERES（ヒアー・ヒアー・ヒアーズ）」メンバーを募集します！
We’re heading into a new season, so it’s only natural that SAKA-SAMA change their line-up and try a new musical style yet again! And before you can say “Hey, this doesn’t sound like a SAKA-SAMA song!!!”, you have to ask yourself: Has anything ever really sounded like a what you’d expect a SAKA-SAMA song to sound like to begin with? Sure they were “Low-fi Dream Pop” just back in February, but the new single is described (by TRASH-UP!! Records) as “Sushi and Space and Disco”, and don’t think for a moment that I’m going to possibly question that bold of a mission statement.
On a personal level, the timing of this new single couldn’t be better, it’s been a weird and hazy last couple of weeks, and the prospect of a hurricane reaching into my coast and wreaking havoc any day now isn’t doing much to relax me at all, so thank goodness the TRASH-UP!! house act is sharing some positive vibes to help allay the dread for a few minutes…
Actually, you know what this reminds me of? Morning Musume’s 2000 single “Happy Summer Wedding”, in which Momusu debuted four new members with an upbeat tune paired to a lively, multi-cultural MV that successfully altered the entire dynamic of the group. It was a departure not entirely devoid of risk, and it paid off big. All those new 4th Generation faces became as iconic as the previous members.
I mentioned this before: I always feel a bit of trepidation when a group I support adds new members because I find myself questioning if they’re needed, but inevitably and before long, I always end up not being able to imagine the group without them. And that’s how I feel about the current seven member SAKA-SAMA line-up. I just adore these girls and the essentially brand new group they’ve become. I still hope we get a dose of the lo-fi-dream-pop-psychedelic-country-arthouse aesthetic with this current roster, but no matter what, I can’t see them ever doing anything wrong. It’s still a SAKA-SAMA world after all…
So GANG PARADE released the MV for their new single the other day, and it’s a nice song and all, but — likely due to the fact that it’s a theme song — kind of tame by the group’s recent-ish standards. Perhaps in the vernacular of today’s youth: It doesn’t so much slay as lightly buffet. A little disappointing!
Of course, as we know ’round these parts, the B side is the best side, and the companion track from the single is unexpectedly exactly what I needed not just from this record, but from like all of idol in the past several months:
I knew that I was going to be on a train under the ground when GANG PARADE dropped the video for their new single, so my mind went to all kinds of fanciful places with it. Would it be heavy or dark or epic or tortured? Would it be great, or greatest? After all, nobody on the WACK roster has been as consistently cool and interesting with their releases as GANG PARADE since at least the latter parts of last year. A new single so titled as to get Ke$ha into my head from references first to last just had to be great, right?
I mean, it’s nice!
Inspirational! Also kind of nihilist!
I’ll admit, I was hoping for something a little more something out of this one. It reminds me way more of late-run POP than it does what GANG PARADE’s been doing since the SiSncident injected raw excitement into what had been WACK’s least effective product, and that took some doing when you consider that the opening guitar licks got me het up like I was about to get the rock anthem I’ve been waiting for. Alas! I guess the limitations of being for a TV show proved to be too much.
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.