Spring is here and new life is emerging from the Earth (It really is!) and the days are nice and long! We’re gearing up for summer with (hopefully) significantly less Covid-ness and I for one, am longing for a new soundtrack for the humid nights I’m driving around with my windows down. What’s it gonna be? I’m sure you all have multiple things you’re anticipating, and here’s the newest hat thrown into the summer soundtrack sweepstakes…
The glorious genre-spanning etherial beings of light that we know as RAY are streaking across the heavens with a new four-song single release simply called “Yellow”! This announcement alone is a stop-the-presses level of importance as it is, but the wonderfully generous souls behind RAY have been gracious enough to give you (for a limited time) a complete listen to all four tracks! You’re now excused if you want to cut me off here and go listen immediately, after all, I’m as excited as you are and understand fully..
LiLii Kaona celebrated their three-year anniversary this past weekend with a special live at Moon Romantic, and they had a lot to celebrate. LiLiKao’s incredibly productive third year has included the release of their startling EP, KIYOKU, their first DVD, and non-stop performances including frequent appearances on the MoonRomantic Channel and the beyond excellent Tribu.pre live series. However, despite their near-constant activity, LiLii Kaona may still rank among the best kept secrets in chika idol.
It is well beyond time for that to change. Although we are about a month away from considering the Best of 2020 nominations, if there is any justice in the world (spoiler alert: there is not) LiLii Kaona should be a finalist in the category of Best EP for KIYOKU, Song of the Year for the impeccable “Rust”, and now, after premiering during their 3rd anniversary live, Best MV:
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…
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”…
This dropped a few days ago, but it was simply too good to let slip past the radar. Shoegaze idols RAY, (Successors to the now-legendary group with no with no real name save for a row of dots) are still not a year old, but have already made a huge impression with a dose of effortless charisma and incredibly strong musical collaborations with top-tier talent.
Their first EP release “Blue” was a near-perfect collection of songs that revealed a sky’s-the-limit potential. We’ve been treated to MVs for “Butterfly Effect” and “Meteor”, and now there’s a more low-key video for the closing track, “The End Of The World With You”…
As the tweet above explains, this MV offers us a retrospective of the group’s upward trajectory since their inception, including most notably their acclaimed show in Taiwan. Let’s have a look!
SAKA-SAMA summed up the state of idol for 2019 in a nutshell: They kicked off in January as a six-member unit, then experienced a major overall, leaving them as Kokone’s solo act for a bit, and is now ending the year with multiple-group veteran Mizuho stepping up as a support recruit, rebranding SAKA-SAMA as a duo. (I think they’ve been a duo at least once before… it’s hard to remember every incarnation!) How long will this arrangement last? It’s a SAKA-SAMA world, so we’ll just have to simply wait and see! But this moment in the group’s evolving history will be documented in the form of a recorded single that’s title translates to “Goodnight Judy”. So with this new single, how does the dynamic change? Here’s an MV to give us the insight…
It was just mere days ago we were talking about that wonderful footage of RAY performing live in Taiwan, and we took a moment to also mention that the group will also be releasing their first single/EP, entitled “Blue”. The release has lovely cover art and an extremely impressive roster of collaborators. Now we’ve been blessed with another highly anticipated track on the disk, “Meteor”, featuring an instrumental arrangement by Elliot Frazier of the highly regarded Austin band Ringo Deathstarr!
RAY, the next generation shoegaze idols who arose from the ashes of the legendary dot-chans, have been hard at work crossing genres, boundaries and now borders. The group visited Taiwan and performed a show in Taipei. Excitedly, I scanned Twitter and YouTube hoping to find some footage of the concert. Viz and Rain were also thankfully on the case, and proved to be ethusiatic as always to help out…
And Rain went and found an upload of the entire set! He certainly wanted to make sure we didn’t sleep on it… Continue reading
Friends, idol has been in tumult this year. Emotional graduations, gut-wrenching disbandments, the usual shenanigans turned up to 11 … it’s been a year of as many negatives as positives, I think, and that’s really hard to do in an industry built on the idea of making people happy. For a lot of us, one of the hardest-to-take moments of the year’s first half was the disbandment of our beloved Dots, who for two-plus years had been the real standard bearer for awesome shoegaze-derived alt-rock songs and enigmatic personalities. It was a blessing, frankly, to be able to host one of the good digs into the concept. Everybody on Team, I think, loved them.
And then they were gone, but it wasn’t long before the suspected successor came along — Ray came into theoretical existence not terribly long thereafter, and while things have been quiet for them in the first couple of months, of course it stood to reason that interesting and creative things were afoot. That’s where we land today, with their effective debut:
I’ve been kind of tingling with giddy anticipation all day today since this bit of news broke via a retweet from the Dots staff twitter. As you may know, the mysterious mind behind Dots has been quietly planning a successor to the seminal experimental and constantly evolving shoegaze idol project, and at last, it appears that the time is nigh for the next event to break out and dare I suggest, likely shatter expectations with an exciting new unit…