Archive for June, 2009

Jun 30 2009

Mixed Feelings

Published by under Momusu

I feel left out…. I mean, everyone is all excited and gearing up to go see Morning Musume in LA, and I’m stuck here in Japan….

I know, I know. I have seen Momusu multiple times in Japan, and will continue to do so for the next year or so. I have had the true MM concert experience surrounded by genuine wota. At the same time though, as an American, I really wish I could be part of the group to welcome Momusu to their first public appearance in America. And they’re signing autographs too! You have win win entry to autograph events if you’re in Japan! SO unfair!!! The fan meet up/ party ought to be lots of fun too. And I’m sure they will try to speak some English, which is bound to be cute or funny.

Anyway, I’m looking forward to reading all about it when you get back. Have a blast guys!

Jealous,

~Celestia~

4 responses so far

Jun 28 2009

On AKB

Published by under Momusu

This entry has little to do with H!p. You’ve been warned.

You know, there has been a lot of growth in the AKB48 fandom lately, and several of my (online) friends really like them. I had a ton of free time this weekend, so I decided to go out and give them a thorough honest chance. I watched the full Top 100 concert, since I though it would give me a good look at all the teams and some of their best songs. I watched some random other stuff and read various profiles of the girls too, so while I’m no expert, I consider my fairly educated. I’d say I can identify 3/4 of the girls or so (pretty much got A and K down, B not so much). So, what do I think? Plus and minus style.

+ Some of the girls have really nice voices. It’s true. There are definitely several girls who are as good as or better than the best h!p has to offer. Lots of good dancers/ stage presence too.

– WAY too much lipsyncing. This is a huge minus for me. There are only a handful of performances that I can find that seem to be live, and that’s just not acceptable. With h!p, the majority of concert performances are live, with occasional lip syncing. With AKB, it seems to be the other way around. If I go to see idols sing, I want them to actually sing, not just pretend to. Are they afraid that if everything doesn’t sound just perfect, their fans will desert them or something?

+They have some very good songs. There’s plenty of boring filler in there, but the gems make it worthwhile. I’ve expanded my music collection quite a bit!

+Also on the topic of songs, I have to admit that the lyrics are often more creative than h!p. They’re willing to do more daring things, like sing overtly lesbian themed songs, for example. More variety in song types is a plus.

-That said, sometimes I think the sexuality can go a little far, especially considering that there are several younger girls. Many of these girls release much more risque photobooks than you would expect to see from h!p, and as a female, that would make me feel a little weird if I were their fan. Also, I know that CK will hate me for this, but Miss Ohori slinking around stage literally wearing negligee makes me feel like I accidentally wandered into a sleazy strip joint. No thank you.

-There are just too many girls. I know, I know. It’s the same old argument you hear all the time, but it’s true. And they keep adding more. So many of those girls will forever be pushed to the very back. If they’re not good enough to be on the CD, why are they even there? It sounds harsh, but it seems to me like AKB is carrying some deadweight. From a marketing standpoint, it’s an established fact that the sheer number of girls can be a turn off when it comes to attracting new fans.

+That top 100 concert is a great idea! I know that there is some argument about the fairness of the voting system, but I still love the concept. I wish h!p would do something like that, but then I guess they’d just be copying AKB. I’m quite curious to know what the fans would pick as their top 100 h!p songs of all time.

-I also worry that the girls may be being exploited a bit. They’ve done a lot to remove distance between fans and the idols, but are all the girls truly happy with that? Handshake events is one thing, but hug events? Personal wake up calls? Private photo sessions? I dunno.  Not to mention that the daily performances ensure that the girls are working their asses off all the time, and from what I hear, only the very top girls get paid much at all.

+Their AKBingo show looks to be much more entertaining than haromoni or yorosen ever were.

-Lastly, in the negative category, some of their promotional schemes are just exploitative. The infamous “collect all 48 posters, 1 randomly chosen with each CD purchase” incident was the worst, but this new “buy a CD, get a vote for who is in the next single” ploy is kind of dirty too. The voting idea isn’t bad, but it should just be one vote per person. Making people buy their votes with stacks and stacks of CDs… the CD itself is meaningless.

Overall, I appreciate a lot of AKB’s music and performances. I’m sure they have some good idols in their ranks too, but I’m going to be sticking with my h!p fandom for now. There’s just too much about AKB that makes me feel uncomfortable for me to really get into that fandom, and the lipsyncing drives me crazy.

~Celestia~

20 responses so far

Jun 23 2009

Wedding Album info= Lots of Clues

Published by under Momusu

Since I’ve been writing a lot about who is going to be in the new revival units, I figure I’d update with new information. First, the cover of the h!p wedding album. We can assume that every egg pictured on this cover is going to be involved is some sort of unit.

LINK

Looking at the back row, we have the 4 Smilage members, Mano, and then Takeuchi Akari, someone (maybe Saho Akari, but it’s hard to tell) and Miyamoto Karin.

It might be logical to assume that Takeuchi and Miyamoto are going to be the other new Minimoni members…BUT, then the track list with who’s singing what came out, and it’s full of surprises.

To put it in english.

1. High-King, 2. C-ute/Mano, 3. Aa!, 4. Shin (or atarashii, either way it means “new”) Minimoni, 5. Pucchimoni V, 6. Takana Reina, 7. Risa/Eri, 8. Ai-chan, 9. ZYX-Alpha, 10. (kanji for “sequel”, possibly read “zoku”) * Vuden 11. Tanpopo (and some symbol), 12. LinLin, 13. Berryz/Mano, 14. Sayu, Koharu, Aika, JunJun

First of all, LinLin solo!!! How cool is that? Secondly, ZYX, Aa!, and VUden revivals, plus High King. Wow.

And thirdly, notice that several of the revival groups have new names? Pucchimoni has gained a V, Minimoni is labled “new”, ZYX has an alpha, and VUDen and Tanpopo both have new kanji added. I’m going to take it to mean that these units will all have new members, since other “revivals” like High King and Aa! have kept their names the same (since all of their original members are still with h!p). Since ZYX was originally a kids unit, I’m betting that some of the eggs are going to slip in there. In fact, since Smilage is on the cover and they’re not performing as a unit and Saki and Ayaka aren’t in any other units,  the two of them will HAVE to be in one of these other revivals, plus at least one out of Takeuchi, Miyamoto and the other egg (Saho?).

There’s a lot to speculate on here. What really kills me is that the day it is all revealed, is going to be my first day back in America to visit my family for summer vacation, so I probably won’t be able to find out until a while after it has been announced. No!

Dying of anticipation,

~Celestia~

2 responses so far

Jun 20 2009

Just ‘Cause it Amused Me

Published by under berryz

LINK

Starts at 2:45. Risako and Miyabi wander into a h!p shop on their bus tour, and the people in the shop freak out. The best part is these two girls who are making the oddest noises… Lol

~Celestia~

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Jun 18 2009

More Revivals

Published by under Uncategorized

The surprises keep coming. It seems that not only will MiniMoni be reformed, but new units for Pucchimoni and Tanpopo are also in the works. It’s not clear at this point whether or not these units will be releasing new material or just be concert/ cover album units, but it’s certainly…interesting news. I’m pretty much behind the Minimoni idea, because, as I’ve said, I think there is a need in h!p for a more kid-oriented group right now. Pucchimoni and Tanpopo though… I dunno. Is there really a gap there that these kind of units can fill?

Actually, from Tsunku’s blog entries so far I’ve gotten the impression that MiniMoni will be doing new songs and whatnot, but the other two probably aren’t… but I could be totally wrong about that. We’ll just have to wait and see!

The members of the other two revived h!p units will be announced at the summer concert, so we’ve got like a month to speculate. I like to get my speculation done early though, so here’s who I think should be included.

MiniMoni- Already talked about this, but besides LinLin and Kanon, I would pick Momoko and Maeda Irori (egg). The first two members announced were such good choices though, that it almost doesn’t matter who the other two are.

Tanpopo- Risa (because she has Tanpopo experience. Also because I adore her), Maimi (I find it hard to imagine a scenario where Maimi is left out of this shuffle extravaganza), Eri (she’s just got the right voice for it), Maeda Yuuka (to add youth and cuteness). This is what I’d hope for, but I bet ManoEri gets in somehow.

Pucchi Moni- Maasa (has gained popularity lately. it’s about time for her to be in a subunit, and pucchimoni would be a good fit. She’ll be Yossie), Noto Arisa (soo cute in Eggs performance of Chokkoto Love. She’ll be Kei), Reina (and she’ll be Goto, since she idolizes her! It’s perfect!)

I’ve tried to include at least one member of Momusu, one of the kids groups, and one of the eggs in each unit for balance and the true “shuffle” experience. It’s going to feel like a long time to wait until we find out who’s in for real.

~Celestia~

3 responses so far

Jun 03 2009

News!

Published by under Momusu

LinLin is in the new MiniMoni (as the leader)!!! LINLIN IS IN THE NEW MINIMONI!!!!

An excellent call, Mr. Tsunku. I tip my hat to you. Since she’s the leader, that also gives us a clue that the other two members are probably younger than LinLin.

~Celestia~

2 responses so far