TIF is going on as I write! I’m going to finish all the acts while watching the footage coming out, and then write my thoughts on that.
This is a local group hailing from Tottori prefecture! Their name has that star in it, but otherwise the name is Diamond. They’re a three member unit that, according to their TIF bio, debuted about a year ago. One thing they mentioned in their description which I think is really important is that they’re excited to come to Tokyo. A lot of the groups in TIF are local groups, who mostly perform in their own town or prefecture. TIF allows a lot of idols to get more recognition on a national (and, by extension, international) basis.
Daiya Mondo is made up of three girls, Haruhi, Kanako and Yurina. They all have blogs and twitter accounts, but I don’t see much of an official web presence for them. As such, I don’t think there’s much in the way of singles for them. However, there’s a surprising amount of stuff online about Daiya Mondo on Youtube, including 20+ minute live shows. And from what I’ve seen, I like them. Yeah, their name and lack of online presence makes finding stuff about them a little tricky. However, they have a really nice energy about them.
Daiya Mondo doesn’t have any big gimmicks, and they’re a bit tricky to follow as an international fan, as is the case with many local idol groups. But I really like them so far, and I hope to hear more from them!
It’s another group I covered last year! Takokusekigun means coalition forces in Japanese, and it fits; this is a group full of members who are half-Japanese, half-something else. One member is fully Japnaese, another is half Thai, and another is half Filipino. So while it’s definitely a Japanese idol group, Takokusekigun aims to be a much more multinational group, something I think is really interesting and that doesn’t get done too often. This is a three-member group with members around 20-years old. The group’s theme is ‘love’ (which is the case with many idol groups, really), but they do put either love or “ai” or something in their song titles. So they do run with it.
Even though you probably haven’t heard of them, they’re putting out their 7th single this week! It’s a double A-side, Ai no Kankyou Kenkyuu Center and Manatsu no Sora no Iro. While they do have a fairly generic sound, I really like Manatsu no Sora no Iro. The group has really improved in my opinion since last year’s TIF, which is a really good thing! Their live performance skills have also improved, though no one in the group is particularly talented at singing or dancing. They’ve come a long way since last year.
Personally, I still find them a bit hard to get into, mostly because of the music (being pretty generic) and that said music doesn’t really allow for really energizing performances from the group. That said, I love the concept that it’s full of international flavor, and I really hope they do well in the future.
I’ve heard of them, but haven’t really paid them much attention! Dancing Dolls is a five member unit from Osaka, all childhood friends. They started performing on their own, writing their own songs and forming this group, uploading dance covers to Youtube and Nico Nico Douga. Last year they signed with Sony and have started releasing singles! So far they’ve put out three singles, with their latest, DD Jump, just out this week. DD Jump is actually a really good take on Morning Musume’s Love Machine; they took the basic song and completely remixed it to be more of a dance/club track. And I LOVE it.
This is one of my favorite things of the year so far. It’s catchy and a fresh take on a song that I’ve honestly heard way too many times, as a Morning Musume fan. This is really fresh sounding, catchy and fun. The PV’s really well made, and all the girls have a lot of charisma and energy. After seeing this, I immediately went to check out some of their other PVs, because I’m really excited about this group. Everything from how they were formed to their self-sufficient nature to just how strong performers they are. I’m really excited about this group, and I’m glad I investigated them through Tokyo Idol Festival.
I’m still new to Dancing Dolls, but you should definitely check them out. I can see bright things for this group!
The other Avex iDOL STREET group! Cheeky Parade was formed in 2012 and has nine members. They put out one indies single, Cheeky Dreamer, and had to sell all 5000 copies of it before they could make their major debut. They made it, and have since put out two singles, Bunbun Nine9’and C.P.U!?. They’re putting out another single in September.
Whereas Super Girls is a very typically idol unit, Cheeky Parade has a bit of a rougher edge and are a lot more rock-inspired. They remind me a bit more of Passpo, if anything, just based off having a rock-inspired (but still very pop) sound for idols. Since this group is avex they’re obviously pretty polished, and have really good dance skills.
Much like Super Girls, while they haven’t quite grabbed me like other idol units, I recognize they’re a good unit. However, I really prefer Cheeky Parade over Super Girls. Maybe it’s that little edge they have to them, but they’re quickly establishing themselves as an idol unit, and I’m interested to see where they go in the future!
From what I can tell the full name of this unit is “Chou Animekei Bishoujo Unit KiraLyra Heart. This gives you a bit of an idea of their aesthetic, as they’re definitely anime-influenced in their look. They’re a three member unit… and it’s hard to tell more. Their website is honestly bizarre, demanding registration for basic things. If anyone can figure out their site, please comment; I’m having trouble here!
According to Facebook, they’re more centered around Nico Nico Douga, where they’re apparently a crossover unit with Miku Miku Dance. So they’re really going for an anime aesthetic here! They’ve put out one single, Hayate Girl, so far, and I think they’re a pretty new group.
If you really like the Vocaloid look, this may be a unit to look into. However, to me they’re a bit too difficult to put in this effort. Hayate Girl is a pretty good song, but I just don’t care enough about Vocaloid stuff.