- Love together! / Berryz Koubou
- Anata Nashi de wa Ikite Yukenai (Berryz Koubou Last Concert 2015) Berryz Koubou Ikube~! Ver. / Berryz Koubou
- GamushaLIFE / °C-ute
- Tsugi no Kado wo Magare / °C-ute
- Yuugure wa Ameagari / Morning Musume ’15
- Sukatto My Heart / Morning Musume ’15
- Taikibansei / ANGERME
- Gashinshoutan / ANGERME
- Wonderful World / Juice=Juice
- CHOICE&CHANCE / Juice=Juice
- Koi Dorobo / Country Girls
- Wakatteiru no ni Gomen ne / Country Girls
- Nen ni wa Nen / Kobushi Factory
- Dosukoi! Kenkyo ni Daitan / Kobushi Factory
- Survivor / Kobushi Factory
- Triangle Alpha / Alpha Hoshi no Min
- Thank You Very Berry / Tsubaki Factory
1. Love together!
I find it interesting they would open the PB with Berryz (since in longevity, they were the eldest group in H!P, well at least they were considering Morning Musume’s stretch of life starting with the 9th Gen). Love together! was of course best known as Berryz’ bow out before their indefinite hiatus kicked in. I really liked how synthy it is, but also how sentimental the track is as well. There’s just something about this track that just stood out in the first half of the year (technically the PV came out in 2014, but still). I think I might’ve preferred this closing the album, but the pattern of the album just made it the opening…
2. Anata Nashi de wa Ikite Yukenai (Berryz Koubou Last Concert 2015) Berryz Koubou Ikube~! Ver.
The only exclusive song off the compilation is purely a live version of Berryz’ debut single during their final concert. While I feel like this song itself has had too much representation in recent releases, I suppose it makes sense to be making a full circle coming after “Love together!”. I forgot how much Maasa is involved in this song because she’s really nice sounding here. Otherwise, I kind of got bored of it…would’ve much preferred the Love together! performance but having the same song twice on Petit Best 16 might’ve have made things redundant.
As the song was representing °C-ute’s 10th anniversary as a group, GamushaLIFE didn’t strike me as good as Berryz song of 2014, but I like that we had different writers for the song so it definitely sounds different, but there are times where I think of “Tokai no Hitorigurashi” with the synth beats and overall upbeat tone. I do like the little rapping section they threw in the bridge, but the song otherwise didn’t do much for me.
4. Tsugi no Kado wo Magare
The other song chosen came from the same single as “GamushaLIFE” which is a tad annoying since the other single they released was a bit more closer to the latter half of the year. As a Takui Nakajima cover, this one sounded a lot more together and the quintet sound heavenly (especially Chisato!). The arrangement is also pretty unique too having a pop/rock sound mixed with piano and strings. It’s a nice track and reminds me of older J-pop songs.
5. Yuugure wa Ameagari
Since Morning Musume weren’t going to frontline the compilations, it’s odd finding them as the 5th and 6th tracks. Yuugure wa Ameagari was released with not so much favorable results due to the madness that was going on during promotions. I was surprised it was chosen over “Seishun Kozou ga Naiteiru”, but I still liked this song regardless! The slight platinum-esque era vibes I felt from this one was strong. I loved the amount of Riho, Fukuchan, Maachan, and Odasaku. A nice, flowing song (my favorite of the single).
6. Sukatto My Heart
The other track came from their 2nd single of the year and unlike “Yuugure wa Ameagari”, this was actually my least favorite from the single, but it’s mostly because the other two A-sides from said single were just that amazing for me! Meaning, this is still a decent song otherwise. The tune brought back some cool dance/disco vibes and a lot of the promotion looked like something from “The☆Pea~ce!” which was another plus. I have grown to enjoy it much more, but compared to “Oh my wish!” and “Ima Sugu Tobikomu Yuuki”, it’s a bit safe.
I’m not surprised this song was chosen because it’s quite a huge song for the group! I mean besides the fact it’s the first single under the group’s new name, ANGERME, and the debut for Murotan, Rikako, and Aiai. I also thought it transitioned from “Sukatto My Heart” almost too perfectly by having a similar funk/disco vibe to it. I’m still a bit surprised that only Ayacho and Murotan got a solo line, but really the song is just so energetic and really pumps up a crowd whenever it’s performed…it really has been their year!
Following suit, this and the previous track had a similar mind in title as they’re both idioms written in four kanji letters. I didn’t expect the two songs to sound a little similar to one another as well! While it does come off as a bit more sillier in concept as the group sounds like their just having fun with this one. Better yet is that all 9 members got a lot of solos which is a godsend for many to know what Rikako and Maho’s voices sound like within the group. It’s a fun song and just raises spirits everytime!
9. Wonderful World
Moving onto Juice=Juice, they’ve had a rather empty year with only one single and their debut album. As the primary A-side of the single, I really couldn’t care about this song as it just kind of didn’t suit the group and their more adult and cool-sounding songs prior. There are some things that I really liked (like Karin primarily and the pre-chorus). Otherwise the song felt so emotionally barren and Sayubee’s ~la-la-las~ are just aggravating here (then it kind of ends off, which is pretty weird too).
I wasn’t expecting Juice=Juice’s other choice (haha) to be an album song, though I’m happy it’s this one because it had a much stronger impression to many fans and makes up for how bland “Wonderful World” ended up being. I love the sawtooth synths and the punching beat just added a really cool style. My only gripe is the vocal effects used during verses, it just didn’t suit the girls who are capable of holding their own without them…still…it’s a badass song for the group and I’m happy it’s on this compilation.
11. Koi Dorobo
I’m sure if Uta hadn’t left, “Itooshikutte Gomen ne” would’ve been a shoe-in for the release, but since the company is avoiding it like the bubonic plague, we get the other A-side (which doesn’t erase Uta strangely enough but the group still performs this at lives). While I rather had preferred the aforementioned the song, this one was a decent 2nd option (as if they would’ve put the entire 2nd single XD). This song is playful and cute and has a lot of charm about it. I also loved the ending too…OH MY GOD! LOL
12. Wakatteiru no ni Gomen ne
That being said, with the sudden announcement of Uta’s departure, this song was affected the most from the news as there’s a BUTT TON of Chisaki in this song which is surprising as Mai was chosen to be the boy of the track. Being more playful and charming than “Koi Dorobo”, Wakatteiru no ni Gomen ne was a surprising song at how fast it grew on me. It’s a fun song and sticks out in a good way for the group’s more cuter image!
13. Nen ni wa Nen
Why they chose the original over the (Nen’iri Ver.) is beyond me, but this is Kobushi Factory’s debut single! For a debut though, this was pretty much unexpected from them as most members were known for tackling cuter songs (especially Renako, Hamachan, Taguchan, and Minamina. I was pleasantly surprised to see the direction of the group was to be a bit more rockin’ ala Buono! I also love that all 8 members get a solo within the track too! It was a pretty awesome song to debut with, though the updated version is definitely the much preferred take.
14. Dosukoi! Kenkyo ni Daitan
Then we have the group’s major label debut and boy was it another doozy to be dealing with. Just like “Nen ni wa Nen”, every member has a chance to shine in the song, but the arrangement was a bit more edgier and cooler. There’s something adventurous about the chorus and then hearing everyone growling is just epic in its own right! I really enjoyed this song a lot and the PV was a lot of fun to watch too, just saying!
No, it’s not that Kobushi got three songs specifically, starting back on the last Petit Best, it ended with three stageplay tracks and that seems to be the case for the second time in a row! I will say that having Survivor coming after “Dosukoi! Kenkyo ni Daitan” is slightly jarring, but this stageplay was REALLY dark and foreboding. The group still retained their heavier rock style, but the mood was a LOT more serious. I love the power this group has vocally and just makes me look forward for the group as they continue on!
16. Triangle Alpha
As the main theme from “TRIANGLE”, this song is actually sung by the entire cast (including most members of MM’15, Maasa, two Kenshuusei, and 2 Engeki Joshi-bu cast members). While I didn’t think the OST was that great, this was one of the more interesting songs from the play. I kind of like the synthy upbeat feel of the song and for some reason I keep singing the ~wakusei ARUFA~ parts and some of the Suwasuwa parts too. It’s still a bit meh comparing to “Survivor” and most of “LILIUM” but this was still a good track.
17. Thank You Very Berry
Closing the album is actually Tsubaki Factory’s only contribution to the compilation and it’s the theme of their play (strange that “Seishun Manmannaka!” was left off). Being a song I’ve been familiar with recently due to Berryz Koubou doing a new version of the same song from their final best album released earlier in the year. Tsubaki’s take might not be as concrete as the former groups, but the arrangement is pretty to listen to and the group’s more youthful vocals are interesting too. I kind of liked it, but it doesn’t come close to Berryz’ version.
- Love together!
- Dosukoi! Kenkyo ni Daitan
So we’ve finally come to the end of 2015 and of course our annual Petit Best has finally released. I’m slightly surprised that I enjoyed most of the album this year because a lot of big hitting songs made the cut. Of course there were a couple duds (live Anata Nashi, Wonderful World, and choosing the indies cut of Nen ni wa Nen over the edited one). Still it’s a solid release and one that might top the list of best Petit Best through all 16.