Guess what? I definitely wasn’t ready for what BiS was going to look like sans the Progenitor of Progenitors (Pour Lui, you goofs), nor for a whole mess of other things, and definitely not at 7:00 a.m. But hey, the “WHOLE LOTTA LOVE” MV has arrived and, aside from confirming that is has nothing to do with Zeppelin, it threw me for a whole writhing cascade of loops:
Let’s take this apart:
- We knew that “WHOLE LOTTA LOVE” and “DiPROMiSE” were perfectly cromulent by modern BiS standards
- This is the half of the new single that’s Lui-less, and I knew that, but I still thought that the first 6-frame shot of Momoland was in fact the GOAT, and I spent several minutes unspooling a vicious, imagery-laden takedown of her exit
- Maybe because it of the lighting and the hair, or I’m just getting old, but I managed to turn both Pan Luna and Peri Ubu into Maika from GANG PARADE and likewise spent several minutes unspooling a Watanabe-you-crazy-devil-you response that would have been exactly what the cool kids mean when they say that somebody has “shown their ass”
- Not Kika’s best look
- How about the first one-on-one shot being of Aya? Pretty much sets that expectation immediately, doesn’t it?
- How hard did you look for Saki and/or Lui?
Now, unless BiS has a separate thing planned for “DiPROMiSE” (why would they?), we’ve all but seen the last of Pour Lui in uniform, so to speak. Other than the bullet above, I was putting together a whole bunch of other shots and takes and take-shots, but you know what? Even if she isn’t driving this train completely on her own, it’s still a manifestation of what she wanted and wants.
BiS was always felt like the Lui show, but (publicly) did she ever really make it about her? She had the role of leader, so she acted it; she was often the best singer, so she did that. The point was always BiS, though, not Lui or Nozomi or anybody else. If you were looking for a final farewell tribute to the greatest driving force that idol-beyond-boundaries ever had, this wasn’t going to be it. The point isn’t Pour Lui or that she’s leaving; the point remains BiS.
The past is gone, it’s saying, so pay attention to the future. Hence, right out front here? Aya’s dominant position is like a slap to the face of a drunk — “get your act together before you make a bigger fool out of yourself.” And if you just apples-to-apples line up the track to at least one song per BiS release since 2016, you realize that this is the signature now, and BiS has a signature now, and there’s a major label to satisfy so, like the student that surpassed the master, expect at least some flight to safety in the product.
So there’s the future. It’s here, in fact! It’s Aya, now having cut her teeth with GANG PARADE and ready for the spotlight. It’s Pan Luna and Momoland and Peritan. It’s Zeela and Kika acting as anchors. It doesn’t take big chances, doesn’t blow your face off, and isn’t concerned with statements greater than what’s being presented. It’s naked and deliberate in its intentions, subtler than all of the times in the past when BiS was literally naked and deliberate for effect and clearly without even a quarter as much to say, but it’s still screaming at you.