BLACKNAZARENE Is Kind of Blowing My Mind Here

Have I ever mentioned the “Idols That Maniac Frequently Forgets Exist, Ranked” list? That started off as a pretty okay joke post, then became alarmingly serious as I worked on it — I seriously forget about a lot of idols. I’ll probably never publish it. But for real, BLACK NAZARENE is on there, which is a shame given the self-driven wota hype about their debut earlier in the year.

And it was a good debut! The deflation was less an issue with BLACKNAZARENE than it was wotas’ inability to sensibly respond to stimulus. Nonetheless, while the group has in fact been developing nicely and carving out their niche over the course of the year, they’ve been below the radar because they aren’t the most prolific thing in the world. Maybe they’re making a move now, though, because (as Andrew pointed out) they dropped themselves a new MV today, revealing and unacknowledged but apparent semi-abandonment of their “THUGxkawaii” image:

One half of that formulation does make sense

If there were a Best Of award for Most Incongruous Combination of Name, Image and Sound, BLACKNAZARE would have it. Leaving general commentary aside for a second, let’s just please bask in how unexpected this tune is. Something called BLACKNAZARENE should most obviously be some kind of blackened death thing, brutal and bleak and hopeless and very, very blasphemous; the only other option would be for BLACKNAZARENE to be progressive post-rock*. This is not that!

Leaving my obvious disappointment aside, is the song a good song? It’s a fine song! I think its biggest thing is its raw happiness, which again is not something that I expected to ever be writing about in a context involving something called BLACKNAZARENE. I am philosophically anti-pop-punk, whereas physically often helpless before its relentless enthusiasm. This is fair, and especially so for idols, because relentless enthusiasm is their most basic stock in trade.

*Is there any other kind?