Leave It to Toricago to Make It Snow in the Summertime

“Well isn’t this nice as all heck” is not, I think, how one would usually wind up feeling after seeing:

This is Toricago, after all, the kind of indie-rock-plus idols who embrace foodkakke promotional photos and inadvertently sound more like a band than an idol group. Anything would be possible! So what about something that slowly develops while it roots around inside your hurt feelings and looks for bruises to punch?

Just give it time; you’re going to get swept along an emotional crescendo that doesn’t care about your stupid feelings

Now, when Toricago official tweeted out the warning for this MV, I wasn’t expecting “summer snow”; exactly what I was expecting can be left up to debate, given that Toricago is more like an idea than a fixed property at this point, but “melancholy spin on a summer single rendered as a rock ballad” wasn’t really it. What a song, though. Even though it’s wholly, unmistakably Japanese (and idol) in its phrasing, I swear that elements of the vocal melody in the chorus were lifted from some kind of turn-of-the-millenium tweeny pop tune (Mandy Moore, come on down!).

After listening to this (the MV tells a story, but is ultimately superfluous), I hope you can understand why Toricago isn’t just one of my favorite things to debut in a year absolutely bursting with high-quality new acts, but one of my favorite things in idol, period. Are they loud enough to strip paint from a Volvo? They are not. Does their music threaten to shatter bones? It does not. But is this one of the better combinations of idol and rock in one place? It sure is, and what’s better is that the group has the kind of personality and DGAF image that can serve their emergence from chika into something a little bit more in the broader musical conversation.