SAKA-SAMA is most-certainly an encapsulation of what we think of when we discuss the ups-and-downs and side-to-sides of this whole idol business. This group has run a full gamut of graduations and roster configurations, all while maintaining a musical vision that alters just as much as the member incarnations. There’s only one thing about the lo-fi dream pop idols that has stayed consistent, and that’s Suzuki Kokone, the leader and sole founding member of the group…
Kokone’s perennial presence in SAKA-SAMA has now paid-off for her (And for us, too.) with her first solo release! While Kokone has dabbled with some solo lives while playing her guitar, this marks the first actual catalogued TRASH-UP!! recording by her. (There may have been some solo CDRs sold at live shows perhaps, but I can’t quite recall.) “FEVER” is a six-track mini-album now available through TRASH-UP!!’s online store.
And right along with that welcome news, we’ve also been gifted this delightful MV of the title track! The video is very much in keeping with the sort of whimsy one would expect from a TRASH-UP!! solo artist. Tell ya what, why don’t give it a watch if you haven’t already…
Here we go!!! With Day 16 of the 50 YMM! MV Project, we’re in the thick of YOU’LL MELT MORE! on an unstoppable hot streak. This was the moment where everything the group did became a event for me and many of their other fans. No matter what genre, what style, whatever circumstances, YOU’LL MELT MORE! proved they could be the master of any form and deliver with extra interest paid in full.
The group had released a number a couple of top-tier albums, and steady flow of rock-solid singles and EPs, one of which, the brilliantly titled “Literature and Destroy” contained this song as a closer. Shortly after, the song reappeared on their landmark album “YOU ARE THE WORLD”, which I will continue to unequivocally declare is the greatest idol album ever recorded, and when this MV arrived to promote it, it was clear that at last, the group had unleashed their magnum opus unto us undeserving souls…
One of the goals of doing this 50 Days of Yurumerumo! MVs Project was, aside from celebrating one of the most beloved groups among the Homicidols staff, was to help acquaint potential new fans into their fold and get them to “Melt More” just like we did. For myself personally, this is an especially valuable entry in the series, because this very song was the one that fully sealed the deal and crossed me over from being a casual admirer of the group into a committed fan.
The song is titled “人間は少し不真面目 (Onna no Ko yo Shitai to Odore)”. It was conceived by the core YMM! team: Arranger Hashida Kazuma, lyrics by Kobayashi Ai, who together with the group’s producer, Taichi Take, set out to record a beautiful, sprawling shoegaze epic…
13th Day of UM 50 Plan This time we will see your joint song “Hameedasomo!” A few days ago, the song sounded like a song, but it was very active, so it was a combination of the Stereo Francophone melodies. Are we in heaven or hell? Perhaps the answer is both.
Developed by Tamiya in 2060, “A Hell of a Remix and Remix!” An electronic nerd who doesn’t look like a source material, but every minute makes an amazing speaker. On the other hand, the manipulation of the original referee is frightening and inspiring. Can you really dance? If you keep quiet, an explosion will occur. The acoustic energy can be handled correctly, but the weapon means inadequate manual destruction.
I’ve been wondering if this steady stream of... um, well…streaming live shows is the beginning of another game-changing alteration in our strange and new socially distant world that’s here to stay, or just a means to get through the weirdness of the times. Ultimately I feel like it’s probably a little of both. A number of idol groups have figured out that there’s different ways to supplement their incomes through these online shows by either charging indie-pay-per-view fees, selling merchandise tied into the moment, or even just leaving up a donation link like a virtual hat laying on the sidewalk busker-style. There’s a ton of these events happening now of course, and thankfully Daemon’s been doing a capital job of trying to help keep us aware of what’s coming up.
Our number-one favorite coed-experimental-theatre-art-idol duo, Cinema and Boy CQ (You may call them Densho to shorten it.) have graced us with a new release! Following up their groundbreaking album The Soundtrack of Different Dimension Travel”, the pair have digitally unveiled their second full-length. due out on a physical disk on May 18.
For the more adventurous masses who yearn for bold, left-of-center experiences that push the edges of what one typically considers to be within the “idol” genre, this is the far and above one of the most eagerly awaited albums of 2020. However, due to the recent historical-scale health crisis, this album was actually delayed slightly, but like all great art, it just simply wasn’t right to suppress work that yearns to be heard. And so Densho and TRASH-UP!! Records have generously gifted us this release in advance courtesy of digital streaming platforms, and you should by all means immerse yourself in this rich audio/visual journey…
The new album is called “The Picture Show of Chronic Deja Vu”, which right off the bat is a pretty cool sounding title that conjures up feelings hallucinatory projected images that match up (or even clash) with relaxed moments of solitude. It wouldn’t be the first time visual and audio art colluded to make for a serious headtrip, y’ know?
Anyway, right on cue with the new album, there’s also a couple of MVs to help get you in the Densho mood. First up is “No. 9”, directed by Yukkyun himself…
The glorious RAY posted on their twitter to look forward to an upcoming announcement, which sounded very promising for once, as opposed to all the downtrodden news we’ve gotten recently. “Yes please o’ etherial shoegazing idols , give us something good!! We need this!!”, we were all thinking to ourselves…
And so today, (Which is is actually now yesterday as of this publishing.) the good news was delivered! Have you heard? Listen and listen well, those who believe, and welcome to the light, those of you who are new…
Yes, Sweet Hipster Moses, RAY is releasing their first album!! I swear the sun came out and bathed the Earth is a pink glow while the Corona virus cowered a little today. Everything just got a little better. And oh, guess what else? For a limited amount of time, the album in it’s entirety is uploaded on YouTube, to let you taste the rainbow a little bit early!
Maybe before I say anything more about the details, I’ll leave the embed right here and let you dive in. So go ahead, breathe in, and savor a full preview of RAY’s very first full-length album, entitled “Pink”…
Daemon mentioned this MV in the weekender, but after watching it several times, I’ve felt compelled to write a further commentary on it, so here we go!
It oughta be clear by this point that our favorite avant-garde idol, Okinawa Electric Girl Saya, isn’t slowing down for anything, be it the challenges of a music career, or a virus, or simply exhaustion from working so hard all the time. Saya continues to be on total fire in all the right ways with her rapid fire creative output and inspirational can-do spirit. And with that, she dropped her 167th MV from her upcoming 83rd album (Okay, I’m exaggerating a bit, but give her time and she’ll get there.)…
The song is called “Rhythm” and will be included on her upcoming release “NEO SAYA”. It’s a bit of a departure because it’s (almost) a straightforward pop song that could possibly be kind of a hit if the powers that be freed their minds just a little further….
Yoneko is continuing to explore her post-idol growth as an indie-singer-songwriter, and it’s been rewarding for the rest of us to watch her evolution. Over the last several months, I’ve found her her to be consistently surprising and engaging with her rather prolific output. She’s worn quite a few hats already, at times being a quirky indie popper, and lo-fi rocker, and a one-woman bedroom pop wunderkind in the making.
And like clockwork, the one-time raven has crafted yet another new song and an MV to go with it! It’s been up for a couple of days now, so maybe you’ve seen it already, but if not, you really should…
After their first and last oneman live, their last ever performance with every song and a small cafe talk event, Hamidasystem finally closed in on itself for the second and final time.
The reason for the group disbanding might seem unclear because the official statement consisted of mostly “Hamidasystem will cease activities at the end of March and the manager will leave the company office”, but to those who’ve followed the group since 2016 the reason is crystal clear.
When an idol group dissolves and reforms with an entirely new set of members most of the fans don’t stay. Sure, you might get a few people who stick around because they like the music but when the girls leave so do the fans. Fans of OG Hamidasystem are now fans of Crossnoesis, the group comprised of the old members.
So, what do you do when you can’t fill those gigantic shoes? For an indie group, the shadow is cast not only on their popularity but their pockets too. If you can’t break even then what’s the point? Even with the old songs, the new songs, the promotion, and the ex-MIGMA SHELTER member, the numbers just weren’t adding up.
But honestly? Who cares. Continue reading