Yep, Still Ready for that Kaqiryo Terror Architect EP

It’s time for another Kaqiryo Terror Architect song preview! The last one had me so hype that I wanted to break — they already had one stupid-good album release on the year, and an EP on the same level had the potential to shatter reality as we know it. These tweets from the boss are always so good-way ominous:

Two hours? You know the drill by now. Continue reading

It’s a Crucial Time for a JOANJOAN Update

I’ve been sitting here with my finger twitching over this stuff from Yet Another of Maniac’s Favorite Recent Discoveries JOANJOAN for several weeks, and I really just can’t wait anymore. Plus, what I’m waiting for might not ever actually make it to fruition, and then won’t I be the one with egg on my face? And you’ll be the ones who probably didn’t learn some additional info about JOANJOAN because I can practically guarantee that you’re not following them yet!

So to preface, the really important news is that there’s this new digital single available:

It’s so up my alley that I may as well give it its own permanent address

I’m not sure that we’ll reach MV territory for it, hence the low-context post. Just trust me on this one — if you like your stuff digital and loud and idol, you’ll probably dig it. Continue reading

Who Did It Best? BiS or BiS? Against the Pain!

Ah, friends, we once again are presented with the latest release from the unevenly two-headed monster that is BiS, a single called “Against the Pain” that both 1st and 2nd have versions of. Rather than be purely reductive and blogtastic and be all This Is What Maniac Thinks about it, I leave it up to you, the viewers at home, to render the decision. Yes, it’s Monday, but no, we shan’t go with the Match Game format. Just take in these MVs and render your verdict: Continue reading

Lest Anybody Not Be Aware of How Good mishmash Is

I legitimately hate being more than a week late on this, especially because it doesn’t look like the hype train went nearly far enough in response. Maybe I can help to make up for it by amplifying that hype!

Mishmash, who you may recall I damn near had a stroke over back when they debuted, are yes part of the epic Class of 2018, and they’re making good on their promise at the kind of rate that suggests only good things ahead. This, “SHINING”, is as far as I know just an arrow in their quiver for now, but they went ahead and put it to an MV: Continue reading

Well This Is a Whole New Style for SPARK SPEAKER, Ain’t It?

I have this terrible sinking feeling that there’s a full-on MV for this happening at any minute and I’m going to have some egg on my face, but that’s fine, I needed to have posted this a few days ago anyway.

SPARK SPEAKER! The hard-charging at times surprisingly melodic unit that you either love or don’t yet know that you love is … well, that whole “a few days ago” thing, they actually released their second full album today, and they published this lyric video to get you hype, and they just so happen to be rolling out some adjustments to their sound. Plus or minus, you decide:

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Sugartrap Is Dead; Long Live Harami no Jan!

When was it, a few weeks back, when I noted in the Weekender that we wouldn’t be calling perpetually underappreciated idolcore outfit sugartrap “sugartrap” any longer? Well, the metamorphosis is now complete:

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I Don’t Think Minna no Kodomo-chan Can Tone It Down, You Guys

Just last night, I was getting a meal with a younger friend, and the barely audible radio took up a familiar melody. I needed a second to place it, but only a second, and was soon bouncing along and enthusiastically adding my own “Mmmbop, ba duba dop” along with the iconic tween band. The response was an eyeroll, which led to a discussion in which I copped to always loving the crap out of stupid Hanson despite “being a proper young edgelord and always pretending like I was too cool for that.” This in turn spawned a conversation about what constitutes and edgelord, and at what age it officially becomes not okay to pose as one, and whether edgelords or scene kids or hipsters are worse, and anyway this anecdote is taking on a life of its own.

The point is, what I wanted to drive home to my friend is that edgelords, for good or ill, can easily be spotted by their complete and utter refusal to operate under any speed other than full, and their expectation that others do the same. It can, frankly, be refreshingly honest and committed behavior, with candid dialogue between trusted peers provided means by which we grow and change as necessary. It can also be completely obnoxious!

Now, see: title, and come back to me and ask aloud whether you think that I’m attempting to call out Minna no Kodomo-chan, winners of the Corenament and big 2018 breakouts. Go ahead! I don’t bite. Okay, great question, and no, not really. The principle, I think, does apply, because while I could not possibly be more excited about a new single coming out in less time than it’s going to take me to overreact to the news, let’s regard the whole thing and then see where it takes us. Continue reading

PassCode’s Special Western Album Has Arrived

Well this trailer officially has me geeked:

This week’s Idol in Focus was going to be PassCode, because I really want to highlight their first gaijin release (featuring a re-recording of “NINJA BOMBER”!), but they went ahead and dumped out everything relevant about it over the last couple of days, so a full post it is! By the way, the record is now available for purchase:

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Kindly Enjoy the Crap out of This Zenkimi Live Video

At first blush, I didn’t want to make too much of this … well, not completely unprecedented, but nonetheless very special-feeling pro cut of the inimitable Zenbu Kimi no Sei Da, live, in front of a ton of people, doing the thing that they do so well and pretty much everybody else has to just hope to keep up with.

For real. Just bathe in that. Understand that it’s a gift to see these particular masters of the craft in the chaotic revelry that is their live stage without actually being at the live stage, Codomomental’s business model being what it is. Garry actually wrote a really great reflection of that environment, and from a hyper-rare Codomomental grad show to boot (that grad show), and you can see the same emotional sweep at play here minus, like, the weeping and stuff.

This is just a simple thing. I’m posting it so that the folks who follow the Zenkimi tags or hit that category via Google or whatever really see what it’s about, and maybe gain a different level of understanding from doing so. Also to encourage Producer-san to maybe do this more often!

If the World Gives Us Nothing Else, May It Keep Giving Us DEVIL NO ID

We very literally don’t hear enough about DEVIL NO ID, Okinawa’s loudest answer to the modern idol equation, and it’s quite a shame because, as what you’re about to experience will attest, they’re … well, they’re really good. Combined with the kind of backing that makes big-time collaborations possible, they’re an act that should be making more noise, figuratively as well as literally, than they do.

All of that to preface:

That disarmingly put-together number is spiritually right in line with how DEVIL NO ID does their business, which is to say lovingly striking nasty beats like hammer blows into otherwise highly danceable music that much better aligns with their idol-plus-EDM presentation. It also just so happens to be delivered on a silver platter by the same Ueda Takeshi who penned “STUPiG” and “Gimme Chocolate!!” and is/was the driving force behind the sublime AA=, among other projects that find cool ways to be loud. Continue reading