Archive for May, 2008

May 27 2008

This Post Will Turn Into a Pumpkin at the Stroke of Midnight

Published by under berryz,c-ute,eggs,Momusu,video

I know full well that everyone and their dog is going to be rushing to comment on the new High King PV, but what the hell, I guess if you’re bored with hearing about it you don’t hate to read this. First, let’s look at the PV if you haven’t seen it yet.

I’ll say right up front that I like this a lot, but it inspires many unanswered questions.

-How did this unit get the best H!P PV of the year so far? Leaders/captain pulling strings perhaps?

-How did Reina end up being the focus of a PV with both Ai-chan and Maimi in it?

-Could Maeda Yuuka be any cuter?

-I’m not the only one getting very strong “7 Air” vibes from the set-up of this song, am I? Ai-chan, Reina, and Yuuka are the “sexy” part and Maimi and Saki are the “cool” part, right?

-Speaking of that, why is Yuuka dressed like Saki and Maimi? The only time they split into two groups, she’s singing the “nana” part with Ai-chan and Reina, not the rap part.

-Does this group qualify as a full fledged shuffle unit? It draws members from 4 different h!p factions, but on the other hand, there’s only one of them rather than the traditional three. Could they possibly be testing the market for the return of the shuffle units?

-Will this song be integrated into the Cinderella musical in any way? As an encore perhaps?

Poof!

~Celestia~

One response so far

May 25 2008

Thoughts on the BonKyu Solo Angle DVDs

Published by under Momusu

I really enjoyed watching the solo angle DVDs (though I wouldn’t recommend watching them all in a row), because you can see a lot of things that the original video editors didn’t choose to show you, and you can see more of what the girls are doing when they’re not singing. Here are a few things I noticed upon closer scrutiny of the individual girls.

-Mittsi makes some really strange faces sometimes.

-Sayumi lipsyncs along with almost every single line in every single song. I’m not sure she even realizes she’s doing it. It’s really cute. She’s pretty funny to watch on “Ikimasshoi” because they’re all wearing headmics and lipsyncing there, so the lines Sayumi “sings” and the lines where she doesn’t look exactly the same. Someone who wasn’t familiar with Sayumi’s voice probably wouldn’t be able to tell when she’s “singing” and when someone else is.

-Risa wins for being the thrashiest during Shabondama. She’s seriously awesome. Eri gets second.

 -Not so much a discovery as a lack of one. Does anyone know what they are spelling with their fingers during “Please Jiyuu no Tobira?” It’s kind of driving me crazy.

-It is a rare occasion when Koharu’s manic grin disappears, and it never lasts long enough

-It’s really easy to tell who’s been doing this forever (5th/6th gen) and who’s still a little awkward at it (7th/8th)

-Mittsi was trying so hard not to smile during Shabondama, but she just couldn’t keep a straight face for most of it. Cute!

-Reina’s solo angle is the best out of the bunch. She’s changes her facial expression the most, interacts with the other girls the most, and just generally adds the most little entertaining elements to her performance, even when the main camera isn’t on her.

-It’s interesting to note how little each individual member sings. Even Ai-chan rarely sings for more than half of a song.

-Risa’s body rolling during the Kanashimi Twilight intro is HOT

-Watching solo angle DVDs gives me a massive headache. The girls never stop moving, so neither does the camera. Owww

 Take care,

~Celestia~ 

5 responses so far

May 22 2008

The Costume Hall of Shame Salutes VUDen

Published by under Costume Hall of Shame,VUDen

With Biyuden’s time rapidly drawing nigh, I thought it would be nice to feature some of their wardrobe mishaps in the Costume Hall of Shame. Wait, did I say nice? I think I meant not nice at all.


Look at those chains! It’s like her chest is a tiny prison. Well, not so tiny since it is Yui, but you get the idea. What did Yui’s poor boobs do that caused her to chain them up like that? Stretch out her favorite sweater? Bouncing without a permit? Whatever it was, you can bet they’ll be out on parole in no time.


This costume is made of tinfoil. I’m not even joking here. I really think it might be. On the up side, if h!p is ever in need of a disco ball, all they have to do is hang Rika from the ceiling. As an added bonus, a nice view for the wota watching from below.


I imagine there was a big argument in the wardrobe department the day this was designed. “I’m picturing ballerina fairies…” “Are you crazy? There’s nothing sexier than marching band uniforms!” “Fairies!” “Drum majors!” “Floofy tutu’s!!” “Fringed shoulder covers!!!” Eventually, they were forced to compromise. Each designer got half a girl, and this is what they came up with.


I get that all the costumes in this set are kind of intentionally plasticly and hideous, but I do believe that Yui has the worst of the bunch. Even if we ignore the atrocious wig, I cannot get past the fact that she’s wearing a loin-cloth with suspenders attached. It’s not a skirt, it’s just a flap in front of her crotch, like a doggy door, and….. I’m going to stop that line of thought right there.

And now we move on to the VUDen’s own special branch of The Costume Hall of Shame, the Costume Hall of “Have you no shame”? You see, there’s wearing costumes that resemble lingerie, and then there’s wearing actual lingerie on stage and calling it a costume. VUDen flirts with that fine line so often that they’re bound to slip over once in a while.


Look at how short Rika’s negligee is. One light breeze, and we’ll all have something in common with her gynecologist. Don’t even try to tell me they don’t sell this exact piece at Victoria’s Secret. I’m not posting these because they’re ugly. I’m posting them because they’re underwear.


Because the original “Aisu Cream to My Purin” costumes were just too subtle and demure.


Gluing cheap fake flowers to your undies does NOT make them qualify as a costume. What it does do is result in Squirrelly McOverbite up there simultaneously qualifying for both the costume hall of shame and the hall of “have you no shame”. Even worse, I don’t know if that black lacy thing is her actual bra poking out from under her pseudo-bra, but it sure looks like it.


No matter how many times I look at this picture, it still looks like they’re wearing diapers. Erika especially. VUDen playing to the fetish community? Slap those rabbit ears back on Yui, hand Rika a whip, leave Erika as is, and they’ll be ready to tap a whole new market of potential wotas.

See? That wasn’t very nice at all, was it? The real question is who h!p is going to get to slut it up and prance around on stage in her underwear now that VUDen and Maki are gone. Manoeri perhaps?

V-U-Denied!! Oooh, burn!,

~Celestia~

9 responses so far

May 17 2008

Blogging Survey

Published by under Personal

Broomhead at True Life Seek has posted a survey for bloggers, and I thought I’d give it a whirl. Seems like a good idea, and I’m sure we could all learn a thing or two from reading people’s responses.

Goals:

  • Why do you blog? Starting with the big question right off the bat, huh? I’ll just go with the obvious response, and say that it’s because I enjoy it and it gives me personal satisfaction. I think the rest will come out in my answers to the other questions.
  • What long-term goals do you hope to accomplish, if any at all? Long term? None I suppose. I’d like to make more of a name for myself I guess. Maybe establish some regular readers?
  • Where does your blog fail to meet your goals? I think things are going along all right. I don’t really blame my blog for any lack of recognition, lol. It’s my own fault really. I should either be writing better, self-promoting more, or both.
  • If you do have goals, what will accomplishing them do for yourself? Again, just personal satisfaction.
  • What do you want to gain out of blogging? A creative outlet? Praise from others? Personal satisfaction? Money? Lots of things. I neither expect, nor intend to get any money out of this. Why? Does someone want to give me money, because I’d be happy to accept. =p The other three are all good and important reasons though. Another is that I want the chance to talk about my fandoms with others who will appreciate what I have to say. My friends and family don’t care about Jpop, so a community of fairly anonymous people on the internet is my only way of doing that.
  • Do you feel that your blog should meet a requirement for amount of entries? Do you feel any particular entry should be a certain length? I do start to feel guilty if I haven’t updated for a while. I’m not sure why, because I’m really not vain enough to believe that people are waiting around for me to update, or that anyone even notices when I don’t. It’s more like I really don’t want this blog to die, and if I get out of the habit of updating regularly, it might happen without my really intending it to. I don’t care too much about length. I try to vary them, because too many long entries makes for tl/dr, but too many short entries and it looks like I’m not even trying.
  • For any particular entry, what motivates you to start and finish blog posts? Inspiration? That’s a good question. It varies I suppose, recent news events, a performance or song that I want to review, a comment made by another blogger or forum-goer, a picture of a particularly bad costume, or sometimes just a completely random idea that pops into my head that I decide I can build an entry around. I don’t generally partially write posts. When I feel inspired to write or do something I just sit down and do it, even if it takes me hours and keeps me awake far later than I should be staying up. When I try to write when I don’t feel like it, crap results, so it’s best to take advantage of it when I’m in a writing sort of mood. I’ll usually go back and edit later, but the content is all put down in one go.
  • Do you actively consider long term goals for each individual post? Not really, no.

Subject Material:

  • What do you blog about? Hello Project here, Johnny’s (mostly KT, and some Arashi) at my other blog, along with very occasional personal stuff, but I try to make that relate to Jpop somehow.
  • Would you be keep a blog even if it wasn’t about the subjects you tend to cover? Sure. I had a livejournal about my life all through high school and part of college. I like this better though. The world of Jpop is much more interesting than my life tends to be.
  • Do you write about the material to promote it to others? Sometimes… but I doubt that’s very effective, so if new fans are born thanks to my blog I see that as more of a nice side-effect than a main goal.

Readership:

  • How much do you care about readership? I care a lot about my readership. If I wanted to write something for nobody to read it, I’d keep a diary. I don’t think there’s much of a point to having a blog if no one is reading it.
  • Does it satisfy you to know people are reading, even if they don’t comment? Yes. Very much so! =)
  • What effect does receiving a comment have on you? I’m always glad when people care enough about what I wrote to take the time to comment. It makes me quite happy. Come to think about it… I probably put more stock in comments than I should
  • Do you write with a particular audience in mind or an unspecified general audience? Why? I write with the assumption that people have a general understanding of the topics I’m blogging about, so I guess that makes it a specific audience.
  • If you write for a particular audience, is it International Wota? If yes, why? IW readers are usually well-versed in Jpop, so yes, them, but anyone else who is a fan or is interested qualifies too

Community: (The International Wota section)

  • If International Wota didn’t exist, would you blog? Yes, but I’d probably be actively doing more self-promotion. I don’t like doing that though, so IW saves me a lot of trouble.
  • When IW covers an entry of yours, are you encouraged to blog more or less? Neither? I don’t think I base how often I write on what IW does.
  • When IW does not cover an entry, are you encouraged to blog more or less? Again, neither.
  • How often do you read other blogs? Daily, some days I read more of them than others.
  • How often do you comment on other blogs? More than never, but less than often.
  • If another blog covers a topic that you wanted or wished to cover, do you still blog about that specific topic? Why or why not? That depends. If it’s just reporting some news, I don’t really see the point of sharing the same information again. If it’s opinions, I’d write about the topic if I felt like I had something new and different to say about it.

Commitment:

  • How serious is your attitude towards blogging? Do you consider it just as something to do for fun? It is something I do for fun, but yeah, I take it fairly seriously. I mean, my family and friends and other commitments come first, of course, but it’s up there near the top of my list of favorite hobbies.
  • How often do you blog? How often would you like to blog? When I first started, almost every day, but I’ve scaled down a bit because that was kind of crazy. Now it’s more like every other day. Lol. I think this is a good pace. We’ll see how much free time I have when I go to Japan and have a (dun dun dun) real job.
  • What priorities do you or have you put aside in order to blog? Why? Nothing that’s really a priority. I’m not going to cancel plans with friends in order to blog or anything. Maybe I watch TV less? And like I wrote before, sometimes I stay up a bit too late, so if you consider sleep to be a priority…
  • Do you see yourself blogging in 6 months? Why or why not Yep. I’ll be in Japan, and no doubt have lots of new and interesting Jpop-related experiences to share.

Personal:

  • Would you say you blog for yourself? Indirectly. It’s more like I blog for the readers, and knowing that they are reading or even enjoying makes me happy.
  • What is your feeling after posting an entry? Is it relative to the time and effort you put in an entry?Depends on the entry. I invest more in some of them than others. If I think something is really good or interesting, I feel kind of nervous, hoping that others will feel the same. Some entries are much less important to me though. I’m sure there’s a correlation to how much time and effort I put in.
  • What needs does blogging fulfill? Attention, creativity, and companionship with like-minded individuals
  • Do you consider yourself a writer? Yes
  • Do you consider yourself good at writing? Good at blogging? This is an invitation to bragging, but yeah, I do think I’m good at those things. I don’t think I’d write or blog if I thought I sucked at it. It’d be depressing. I’m not saying I’m great at it or that I’m going to become a best-selling novelist (I’m not), but my teachers and professors have always told me that I was a very good writer, and all of them couldn’t be wrong.
  • How much of your personal life do you share on your blog? If none, why do you leave that out? Some, but mostly only things that also relate to Jpop. I know you’re not coming here to read about how much I hate my physics class or my date with my boyfriend this afternoon. There have been a few exceptions, but I really try to keep them to a minimum. I have a “personal” tag to warn people away who are seriously opposed to reading anything that relates to me.

That was thurough!

~Celestia~

2 responses so far

May 12 2008

Graduation Songs

Published by under Ayaya,berryz,Momusu,top lists

My recent graduation has me feeling thankful to be a h!p fan. There just aren’t many American songs that are suitable for musing on graduation. There’s that Vitamin C thing from forever ago, and I could always listen to the “doooooo dododo doo doo” graduation march over and over again, but thanks to h!p’s frequent graduations, I have lots of songs that are well suited to a graduation state of mind. Here’s my top 6. Mostly MM, but they have the most graduating going on, so that makes sense. They’re not all songs that have been used to for graduations, but there are some other songs that just seemed appropriate.

6. Hey! Mirai- MM– Future-focused songs are always good for graduation. This one is all about dreams for your future life. It’s fitting for the graduate who isn’t quite sure where they’re heading next and needs some encouragement. Lyric Sample: Hey! Kono machi wa. Watashitachi o sodatete. Hey! Kono saki wa. Watashitachi ga tsukuru mirai. Translation: Hey! This town is the place that raised us. Hey! Right before us is the future that we’re going to make.
5. Hyacinth- Ayaya- Pretty song right? It expresses appreciation for the people who supported you, now that it’s time for you to set out on your own. Appreciation for the people who helped you get there is an important thing to remember at graduation-time. Lyric Sample: Arigatou. Watashi ga itsuka watarashi rashii kaze ni naru. Arigatou anata ga kureta subete ni arigatou. Translation: Thank you. One day I will become my own wind. Thank you for everything you gave me.

4. I Wish- MM- It’s the graduation song, right? This song is so very hopeful. The message, “there are both good times and bad in life, but overall, life is wonderful!” is just what a new graduate needs to hear. Lyric Sample: Hare no hi ga aru kara. Sono uchi ame mo furu. Subete itsuka nattoku dekiru sa! Jinsei tte subarashii. Translation: Because there are sunny days, there are rainy days too. Someday, you’ll understand it all. Life is wonderful.

3. Never Forget- MM- This is one of MM’s songs that’s tailor-made for graduation. The lyrics are about reminiscing about the past with friends while you reluctantly say goodbye. I know I’ll never forget my time in college and the people I met there. Lyric Sample: Wasurenai wa anata no koto. Zutto soba ni itai kedo nee shikata nai yo ne. aa nakidashisou. Translation: I’ll never forget you. I want to stay by your side always, but I guess there’s nothing I can do. Aa, it seems that I’m starting to cry.

2. ByeBye Matta ne- Berryz- Sometimes you want to feel optimistic and excited about where you’re going. Sometimes you want to cry your heart out over leaving where you have been. This is the song for that second occasion. Saying goodbye to my best friends, quite possibly never to see them again, is one of the hardest things I’ve ever done. The lyrics and the tone of this song express that feeling perfectly. Lyric Sample: Bye Bye kyou to iu suteki na jikan. Bye Bye watashi na zeitaku na anata to no jikan. Translation: Bye bye. Today was really a wonderful time. Bye bye. The time I spent with you was precious.

1. Aruiteru-MM, Maybe a surprising choice for number 1? I swear though, this one is just waiting to be someone’s graduation song. Maybe Sayumi’s. She seems rather attached to it. I like the image of “walking forward into the unknown future”. There’s the feeling that we’ve got to keep walking, keep progressing. It’s encouraging, especially since the song reminds us that we’re not alone. Lyric Sample: Aruiteru. Sono saki no sora he. Mada minu mirai he. Translation: Walking. Towards that sky ahead. Towards the future we cannot yet see.

To the future! Cheers,

~Celestia~

2 responses so far

May 11 2008

Announcement

Published by under Personal

Holy shit, I’m a college graduate.

 ~Celestia~

6 responses so far

May 09 2008

Not Quite Love at First Sight

Another cross-over post. You have been warned. There’s more h!p so it goes here.

I’ve got to admit, I’m kind of brutal with music. When I get a new album or single or whatever, the first thing I do is listen to all of the songs once or twice through and sort them into two categories. Either they go into the NEW section of the “My Music” folder or to the “Other” folder, which is a dumping ground for things I’m not sure I want to get rid of, but I’m not sure I want to keep either. The “My Music” songs in the new folder get listened to regularly until I’m no longer being obsessive about them at which point they are moved to the appropriate permanent folder, sorted by group, where they will still be listened to, but not as often. Songs that go to the “Other” folder are largely forgotten about until something prompts me to dig them up again. When I say I’m brutal about my sorting, I mean it. It’s not uncommon for entire albums to end up in the “other” folder, and even with my favorite groups, it’s rare that more than 3 or so songs on an album make the cut.

That’s not to say that I never change my mind. I will occasionally go back and give albums or songs another chance, just in case, and I usually find some songs that didn’t impress me much on the first listen, but are great on the second. Also, watching a good live performance of a song is often all it takes to change my mind about it. So, out of my more recent diggings through my reject folder, here are some of my “New” discoveries.

Koi Uranai Toori ni wa Naranaiwa- Ongaku Gatas Album
I’m ashamed to admit that I kind of blew off the entire 1st Goodsal album when it came out. Something about Gatas and their music style just doesn’t sit right with me. It might have been Mutou Mika, I dunno, but interestingly enough, she’s the one who inspired me to give this song another listen. I noticed that it is the only song on the entire album where she has any sort of solo line (for a grand total of 5 words), and I wanted to hear what her voice sounded like. Not surprisingly, she’s no Ayaya, but surprisingly, I found myself liking the song. Not the best singing (it’s all the eggs), but it’s got a nice melody.

Fight All Night, KT
I was resisting this song for a very long time for a very dumb reason; I think the title is stupid. There are several songs I have excluded from my files over the years because I’m embarrassed to listen to something with such a lame English title (MM’s ‘Nature is Good’ comes to mind). However, on reassessment, I’m forced to admit that the part in the beginning where they kind of computerize a few words of Jin and Kame’s voices is rather cool, and they don’t say “Fight all Night” that often, so I have begrudgingly promoted it to the My Music folder.

Dekiru Onna, MM (c/w to Ai Araba)-
B-sides are always at a big disadvantage when it comes to making the list, especially when they are the coupling for a single that I really like. I love Ai Araba so much that almost any coupling track would pale in comparison. So, I brushed off Dekiru Onna as being too slow and kind of strange and forgot about it….until the Sexy8Beat concert. The girls were all sweaty and lethargic, and somehow it was the sexiest performance of a concert with the word “sexy” right in the title! The last line where Rika (Aika in the concert) gets cut off is awesome. This isn’t standard MM, but it’s certainly worth more than one listen. 45 second performance clip! Short for easy viewing.

Online Videos by Veoh.com

Rock You- Arashi, TIME album
What a deceptive title. There’s nothing “Rock” about this song at all. Without a doubt, it was the live performance from the TIME concert DVD that made me like it. Turns out that while I don’t care for the chorus much, I LOVE the verses. The song starts with the chorus, so I probably stopped paying atention at that point when I first heard it. I really hope that this is an Arashi album track that they’ll be bringing back sometime. Also, I like the little Ohmiya moment in this song. You can see better in the larger version, but I swear, Nino has a certain way of smiling that you only see around Oh-chan. Doesn’t he look downright proud? Anyway, this part of the song is really nice, isn’t it? 30 second clip!

Online Videos by Veoh.com

Sayonara Hageshiki Koi, Berryz-
It is a mystery to me why this song didn’t make it through the first time around. Did I accidentally skip it or something? I watched the “Welcome Berryz Kyuuden” concert and was like, “What is this song?? It rocks!” You know, it might even be my favorite Berryz album song now. I’ll have to think about that though…

I suppose the lesson here is that it might be worth your time to give songs a second chance. Something that didn’t really grab you at first may end up becoming one of your favorite songs!

 

Keep on Rockin’,

~Celestia~

One response so far

May 05 2008

MM Advertises for Disney Land Now?

Published by under Momusu,video

I don’t know exactly what this is, but it sure is cute! Also, I love Disney so…

Interesting that LinLin got a singing line when Sayu, Aika, and JunJun just got spoken parts. Anyway, real update on the way soon. I’m busy watching all 9 solo angles of the BonKyu concert you see…

Mickey Mouse!

~Celestia~

9 responses so far

May 01 2008

Advice?

Published by under Personal

I am currently debating whether or not to attend the summer Wonderful Hearts concert, and before you say, “You fool! Of course you should go!!” please hear me out. The concerts are on August 2nd and 3rd. I will be in Japan staying with friends starting in mid July, but I’ll only have moved to my residence in Saitama a few days before. I won’t be very familiar with the area yet, so I’m concerned that I won’t be able to figure out the train system in time to safely get myself there. Also, I’ll probably be very busy trying to set up house in my new apartment. Finally, I’m unsure whether or not I will have training activities for my job that day. It’s a weekend, and the contract says I don’t work weekends, but since it’s the very beginning, there might be activities anyway. I suppose they might get over before the concerts, but with my lack to train skillz, I don’t want to cut the timing too close. I do really want to go though, and an all Wonderful Hearts concert would be a great way to kick off my year in Japan, wouldn’t it?

Then, assuming that I can work out all of the problems mentioned above, what sort of tickets ought I to get? On the one hand, as a 5’4” 115lb female, I’m worried that if I sit on the main level I will be accidentally trampled by overenthusiastic dancing wota or perhaps take an elbow to the face and break my nose or something. I’d imagine being rushed to the emergency room would be a pretty effective way to ruin my concert-going experience. Also, I don’t really intend to dance along, because I want to actually watch the concert, so I’m worried people might get annoyed if I’m not dancing with everyone. On the other hand, I don’t want to have to bring binoculars just to make out which girl is which. I’m going to the concert to actually see them, and that might be difficult if I’m sitting up in the “family” section.

Help?

~Celestia~ 

3 responses so far