Mar 31 2008
Why didn’t anyone tell me that the Winter h!p concert DVD came out!?!? Actually, I’m glad I didn’t know or I would have spent my entire trip dying to make a break for our van so I could drive back to school and watch it immediately. Since I like doing concert reviews and I favor Wonderful Hearts, here’s a review of the Wonderful Hearts side of things. Just for fun, and because I like to make everything a contest, I’ve declared ‘winners’ of each song again.
Aozora ga Itsumademo, All- Their fairy costumes are awfully cute (only Momo could pull off a pink bow that huge). I am so tempted to line all of them up and rank them by how much I like their fairy costumes, but that would be a lot of work for a group this size, and I suspect that the results would be boring to most. As for the song, I’m a little bit ‘meh’ about it. I mean it’s fine, but not something I’d choose to pump up the crowd and open a concert.
Winner: Risako. She got the first close-up, she looked like she was about to cry for some reason, and it intrigued me. With this many girls on stage any of them who manages to catch my interest is a winner as far as I’m concerned.
Renai Revolution 21, All- As soon as the solo lines start, it is clear that they are not lip-syncing, thank God. I was so very disappointed when the entire summer concert was lip-synced. I love that Aika gets the “hoi!” line.
Winner: Risa. She is always super into the song no matter how many times it’s performed, as evidenced by the great facial expressions in her numerous close-ups.
LALALALA Shiawase no Uta, All- One or two listens and I’ve heard enough of this song to last me a lifetime. Not only that, but I REALLY hate the dance. The girls are trying to look enthusiastic about it, but whether it’s Cute or all of Wonderful Hearts, you can tell most of them are as bored as I am.
Winner: Momoko. She is one of the couple who didn’t look bored (the other being JunJun), and the mega-bow pulls her up to first place.
Tokkaiko Junjou, C-ute- Hehehehe, Tokkaiko Junjou in floofy fairy costumes. I love the idol world. Their dancing looks a little tired, which is sort of understandable since it’s a demanding dance and they’ve performed three songs in a row already. The singing is good though. Even Saki was hitting the right pitches.
Winner: Airi because it’s so hard to notice anyone else in this song. I think it’s one of her better performances of this singing-wise too. Her voice sounds a bit fuller and deeper than usual.
Various Kirari Crap- I mostly skipped through this. If you’ve seen one Koharu solo performance you’ve pretty much seen them all. Next.
Winner: The backdancing eggs. Surely you didn’t expect me to give it to Koharu?
Tsukatta ni Kataomoi, Berryz- You know, this song has grown on me a lot since I first heard it. It’ll never be my favorite, but I can see it showing up on my playlist on occasion. I don’t know if this was their best vocal performance though. A few of the solo lines sounded kind of rough.
Winner: Momoko! Yes she sounds unusually helium-tastic when singing this song, and I know that annoys some people, but I think it’s completely adorable.
Kohaku no Funsui Hiroba, Berryz- Love the song, but Risako’s singing almost ruined it for me. She sounds good singing peppy or angry songs, but on a slow ballad, the tone of her voice just isn’t right at all, and somehow it sounds especially out of place in this particular performance.
Winner: Miyabi. She looks elegant and sounds great (as usual). Of the leads, Momo is a bit too cute for a song like this, Yurina keeps smiling and ruining the mood, and Risako is too shouty, but Miyabi’s voice is just right.
Mikan, Morning Musume- I like the look of their little square formation spread out up the stairs at the beginning. You can see everyone, even the mysterious and elusive 8th gen. Why the hell did Gaki and Kame lipsync in their TV performances again? They are more than capable of singing those ‘so short if you blink you might miss them’ solo lines.
Winner: Reina. “Oh yeah one TIME!!!”
Sexy Boy, MM- Hurray! It was quickly dropped from the BonKyu concert when they subbed in Mikan, so I’m glad that rehearsing Sexy Boy wasn’t a waste of time for them, even if all the somber pointing at the beginning is a bit odd. On the positive side, Sayumi’s high pigtails with the little bows combined with her costume makes for an almost lethal dose of cuxyness, and JunJun’s pose at the end was great. JunJun seems to be getting at least a tiny bit more camera time lately, and I highly approve.
Winner: Ai-chan. Her little, “A-ah” booty drop move always kills.
Odore Morning Curry, MM- What a silly song. It’s still fun, but just not the same without Yossie.
Winner: Sayumi and the butt-shaking/shimmy move around 2:15. What was I saying about dangerous levels of cuxyness?
Renai Rider, Buono- Love the song, but they’ve done much better performances of it. The group parts in the verses sound shrill. I believe this was the first debut of the song though, so they probably hadn’t had much practice with it yet.
Winner: Airi. She sang the best. Maybe you don’t like Airi, but there’s no denying that she’s consistent with her singing.
Seishun Love Lunch, Athena and Co.- I never thought I’d hear them sing live. Guess they proved me wrong. I love this group and everyone in it; I just wish they weren’t centered around such a lame anime.
Winner: Chisato. Chances to hear Chisato sing are few and far between, so let’s enjoy this moment.
Robokiss, Sayu/Risako- Good to see that W songs are no longer being held sacred. Overall, I was pretty impressed with the performance. Risako sang well, and Sayumi was really hamming it up with her wide-eyed innocent expressions and ‘dance moves’. She is truly the queen of exaggerated cuteness.
Winner: Sayumi!!! She’s absolutely perfect for this song.
Aa~in Dance no Uta, Eri/Lin/Jun/Maa- Okay, so they’re no MiniMoni, but no one can be MiniMoni but MiniMoni, and I’m just glad to see this song performed again.
Winner: LinLin. This is like the song version of LinLin. Spastic, bizarre, and yet somehow charming.
Chokkan 2, All- I just don’t like this song, so I’m not going to comment on it.
Winner: Eri. Her solo line took me by surprise. She’s become quite the singer in the last couple years, hasn’t she?
Everyday Everywhere, Ai/Reina- The world needs more Ai/Reina duets. Damn they both look hot and sound great. When compared with the rest of the concert, the song is in a whole ‘nother league of difficulty and vocal talent.
Winner: Reina. Not that Ai-chan wasn’t great too, but it’s rare to hear Reina drop the cutseyness and uses her big girl voice. Who knew she could hit notes like that?
Everyday Yeah Kataomoi, Saki S/Mai/Kanna- Whoa, it’s like VUDen Jr, with one girl in the middle singing most of the lines and wearing a different costume than the two girls flanking her. Is MaiMai the future Rika Ishikawa? More importantly, is Kanna the future Yui? Perhaps a swimsuit photobook would help test that theory? Aika first though.
Winner: Kanna. There’s just a certain hidden sassiness about her that comes out even in a song like this, and she’s become a much better singer than she’s given credit for.
Oujisama to Yuki no Yoru, Erika/Maimi/Yurina/Chinami- Great costumes for the song. I really enjoyed this.
Winner: Maimi, I wanted to give it to Erika, but Maimi sang better and she had the prettiest costume.
Renai Sentai Shitsu Ranger, Ai/Gaki/Eri/Sayu/Reina/Mittsi/Momo/Sako/Miya- Oh no! The costumes on Gaki, Mittsi, Momo, and especially Miyabi are AWFUL. The song is cute I guess. I’d almost forgotten that it existed.
Winner: Ai-chan. Her solo line towards the end is the only notable part of the performance.
Meguru Koi no Kisetsu, C-ute- A good energetic performance.
Winner: Maimi. She looks so happy that it makes me happy too.
Omoitattara Kichi desse, Berryz- This seems like an odd choice to include in the concert, but that aside, it’s cute, and I suppose it’s refreshing to hear a song that’s not performed very often. Many of the solo lines go to the three forgotten Berryz which is also a nice change of pace.
Winner: Momoko. She’s just too cute!!
Special Generation, Berryz/C-ute- I wonder, are Berryz just tired of performing this song by now? C-ute seemed much more enthused. Maybe they’re just mad that they have to share their song. Oh well. I still quite enjoyed the performance. Apparently Airi=Miyabi, Maimi=Risako, Nakki=Momoko, Mai=Yurina, Erika=Chinami, Chisato=Maasa, and Kanna=Saki, in case you were wondering.
Winner: Nakki. I think my eyes nearly popped out of my head during the close-up of her dancing at the beginning.
Bonkyu Bonkyu Bomb Girl, MM- Why do I like this song so much more now than when I saw it in the concert named after it? Maybe it’s because I’m not being distracted by huge gold dresses or awful yellow and green fluffiness?
Winner: Risa for her “Yow!” toward the beginning (she sounded like a cat) and the cool crescendoing “happyhappyhappy” part.
Go Girl Koi no Victory, MM- Weak performance. Come on girls, put a little more spirit into it!
Winner: Dunno. Didn’t really spot any stand-outs.
Handmade City, All- Still not a huge fan of this song because the verses are set too low, but it looks like it’s around to stay. That said, I think the vocals in this performance were better than the Bonkyu concert, and the scarf waving thing looks good with more people.
Winner: Eri. Again, she handles Miki’s lines confidently, and maybe even better than in the aforementioned Bonkyu concert. She can hit that low range without sounding manly unlike some girls. Hint: starts with an A and rhymes with ‘tailakabashi’
Nanimo Iwazu ni, I Love You, All- I love this song! I think it’s a great end to the concert, sappy and powerful without being sad, and good for evoking an emotional response. Also, it’s well suited to the large choral arrangement (I believe the original lineup actually performed it in semi-chorus robes one time). It is not well suited to the three buxom ladies of questionable vocal talent who make up VUDen, but that’s another issue for another time.
Winner: Ai-chan. Very nice introduction and harmonizations.
Keep on keepin’ on,