We Over-Analyze Things: BABYMETAL | “Elevator Girl”

It was about time BABYMETAL paid homage to David Bowie. I mean, while Bowie crushed just about every pop genre on the planet except Heavy Metal, he was largely responsible for the early creation of Glam Rock.

  • Without Bowie’s Ziggy Stardust, we have no KISS.  
  • Without KISS to influence a young Yoshiki, we have no X Japan.
  • With no X Japan, we have no BABYMETAL.

So when BABYMETAL’s new single, “Elevator Girl”, opens by directly channeling the piano riff from Bowie’s early 80s classic, “Modern Love”, the circle of life seems, in some ways, complete. In truth, the direct influence on this single is probably less Bowie’s soul and groove-flavored New Wave, and more the J-Pop fusion of acid jazz, funk and techno that coalesced around the same time period into the broad City Pop genre. City Pop has seen a lot of attention lately with interest from Vaporwave aesthetes, YouTube channels streaming curated City Pop feeds 24-7, and it’s own brief “I didn’t know [insert name here] put out a City Pop album” meme.

City Pop is also heavily influencing a number of current groups in the alternative idol world including early album-of-the-year contenders Atarashii Gakkou No Leaders, GuGu-LuLu and the fledgling OWA Yoru.

(This is a lot of words so far just to talk about a three-minute song. What we are seeing here is an unfortunate side effect when a group as musically fascinating as BABYMETAL only releases three pieces of new material in a twelve-month span. In the absence of an “Elevator Girl” MV to talk about, let’s continue the over-analysis:) Continue reading

Melon, Who Gonna Melon, Does Melon: New Single

I’d been very curious about what Melon Batake a go go were going to do with their next (major) release. At first, those thoughts centered around the whole business of their recent international work — what’s well and truly next at that point? Where do you take things? Where do you aim? Within the concept, what’s possible?

Well, the new single is out in June, and the MV is here, and now we know:

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Babymetal: New Single, New Tour, Old Tricks

It ain’t exactly new anymore, folks, but various proto-iterations of “Babymetal Does X” have been sitting in the drafts queue and just teasing our itchy trigger fingers for the past couple of days, and the whole reason that neither Daemon nor I had hit Publish yet was because we were waiting on a dang MV that still isn’t out so TO HELL WITH IT, LET’S JUST DO THE DANG BABYMETAL POST!

So if you Weekender, you saw my brief reference to the weird feeling of seeing Babymetal making kind of a triumphant return in the same week that BiS was disbanded. That is, the two very loud, expectation-subverting idol-related things that got me into this, the first two (and I believe only in toto) to be granted the Legends tag in this WordPress configuration, easily the two biggest influences on the whole basis for this website and everything it cares about coming into existence in the first place, are going their separate ways not so much like a Journey song but more like Lyft’s and Uber’s respective IPOs, if you know what I’m saying.

Anyway, Babymetal is roaring back into your life (as if they ever really left!) with, on top of that album “soon,” the first single from it released digitally a couple of days ago and frustratingly difficult to access at first, actually, but now all hunky dory!

Obviously go buy the thing (that album’s still somewhere off in the future!), but you can also listen to it right here:

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Here’s Candye Syrup Putting It All on the Table for Their First Reboot Single

When we last left Candye Syrup, it was … wow, it was actually a little while ago. That’ll happen when you completely reboot your project, I guess. And of course there was already plenty of material for the group to work with, so no real hurry to absolutely get more songs out there. Take your time, build up the members, keep those fans engaged, and then hit ’em with your best shot.*

But it’s time! The first (digital-only, I think) single from the new Candye Syrup is here and appropriately titled and definitely worth the click:

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It’s the Flip Side of ZOC

First, disclosure: ZOC’s official Twitter gave me a full-on heart attack the other day when I was idly just trying to clear out the notifications and I saw … a blog post from Seiko without context! DUN DUN DUUUUUNNNNN. But naw, it was nothing, no graduation announcement or a “that was fun, what next” or anything, just words of praise and encouragement from the boss behind it all. Yes, the legend herself is still part of the group she founded.

And on that note, given that their first single released yesterday, it only made sense for ZOC to release an MV for the B-side!

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It Was about Time for Something uijin, and They Delivered

Yesterday was a surprisingly full day of single releases. I guess that literal-end-of-an-era thing was a good reason!

Among this little glut of wins for people like us was uijin, who are wonderful and can do no wrong, and who I’d been watching a little closer lately after their little sister group did this just a couple of weeks ago, and who are in the midst of one of those consecutive-single-release things that all the kids are into these days … who gave us an MV for their latest single, “ignition”! End of weird paragraph!

I’m just the tiniest bit disappointed that the MV wasn’t a full-on commitment to what’s otherwise an energy-addled, aptly named song, but that’s fine because it turns out that they’re using to doubly promote their big one-man on Sunday. Not the choice that I’d make, but an acceptable one! It’s not like they released any video at all in conjunction with the March single’s release. When it’s uijin, you take what you can get!

Now That It’s Out, I Recommend the New raymay Single

Dang, release day came and went for raymay, and they haven’t shared out a video, so we may as well have ourselves a good long look at raymay’s newest single. You may rightly recall the rightful embullience toward raymay’s debut, coming late in 2018 but counting as 2019 because of how we do things and already one of the year’s very best and most promising, and their first (very good) single. Here’s the second, now out on the usual streaming platforms:

And now that you’ve taken a few minutes to listen, let’s talk about it! Continue reading

ZOC Is Here to ZOC Your Socks Off

For almost any idol group that debuted last year, during a great-enough-to-be-noteworthy glut of new projects, to stand out after the fact was going to require unique efforts and angles. Some of them, like we saw from Toricago the other day, are all in on creative updates on familiar tropes. Others looked to up any of a series of antes — to be more something than thei r peers — while others did enough to catch the eye and now face a long road ahead.

Arguably the greatest move that anything in idol could have done last year, then, would be to be in fact the creative side project of a modern musical legend who would lend credence, gravitas and much-needed artistic credibility to the whole in addition to that all-important name recognition. Yes, of course I speak of ZOC, who may have had the most enthusiastically received debut I’ve ever seen despite being more notable for instant member drama than anything they did musically. Basically, it was super idol.

A few months in, though, ZOC has been active and working and stable, and now with a single on the way next week, it was time to really show us what they have to offer. The MV for “family name” tells the tale:

All right! Continue reading

Osaka Shunkashuto Can Definitely Still Deliver a Rock Song

Well, maybe it’s going to be 2016 Week here at Homicidols Dot Com, what with the C-Style yesterday and today the reappearance of an old favorite that I’d all but given up on. Of course I’m talking about Osaka Shunkashuto!

What I’m about to show you is shocking. On the one hand, it’s by-the-gods Osaka Shunkashuto doing their bread and butter, a by-the-gods rock song with a delicious hook; on the other hand, it’s … well, it’s the theme song for an anime called FAIRY TAIL, aka SSFW’s new single, which is itself actually called “NO-LIMIT”:

There are also versions with subs in English and Chinese; also go listen to the whole thing

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The More Tsurezure Things Change, the More Things Tsurezure the Same

When the Idol Known in English as Not Secured, Loose Ends But Still at Home as Yukueshirezutsurezure Yeah I Can Still Type It teased out a noontime Sunday something yesterday, one could have been forgiven for thinking the worst. In a year’s time, two of the group’s most stalwart members had departed, a ton of previous momentum lost, and while fans have embraced the new order no matter how bitter their tears, I think disappointment is something that we’ve just come to expect from this powerfully underrated outfit.

And instead, thank heavens, it was the MV for their latest “Odd eye” single and not only is that a huge relief, but what a showing out of the new lineup:

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