Iroppoi Twilight Game

For those who like H!P ^_^, plus a learning experience!

2003 Nendo Hawaii Genteiban Hello! Project Best 3

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Track Listing

  1. Ne~e? / Aya Matsuura
  2. Please Don’t Cry (Musical version) / Maki Goto, Atsuko Inaba, Mika Todd, Mai Satoda
  3. Rock ‘n’ Roll Kenchoushozaichi ~Oboechaina Series~ / Minimoni
  4. Morning Musume no Hyokkori Hyoutanjima / Morning Musume
  5. Watashi wa Kono yo de Ichiban Bijin / Yuko Nakazawa
  6. Haya~i Norimono / Risa Niigaki, Atsuko Inaba, Asami Kimura, Aya Matsuura
  7. HEY! Mirai / Morning Musume
  8. LA FILLE D’IPANEMA ~Ipanema no Musume~ / Kaori Iida
  9. Giniro no Eien / Miki Fujimoto
  10. Akai Freesia / Melon Kinenbi
  11. Eigakan ga Aru Kara sa! / Aya Matsuura, Ayumi Shibata
  12. Uwasa no SEXY GUY / Maki Goto
  13. Boogie Train ’03 / Miki Fujimoto
  14. Date Biyori / Aya Matsuura
  15. Hareta Hi no Marine / Maki Goto
  16. Ganbacchae! / Morning Musume, Hello! Project Kids, Maki Goto

1. Ne~e?

So the album kicks off with an Ayaya track (her 9th single) and just by looking at majority of the album, the first song is quite sugary and upbeat.  It has a certain summery vibe to it and during this time Aya was just a force to be reckoned with and this song is goofy, but still true to what Aya was pulling off (this song was a part of her 3rd album).  I really like the track, though I feel like it might’ve been starting to stretch slightly thin as far as I was in her discography.

2. Please Don’t Cry (Musical version)

At the same time, I was curious to some of these songs that I haven’t come across and this was one of four songs that I had to research a little on.  Please Don’t Cry is a song that originally came from Gocchin’s stageplay, “Ken & Mary no Merikenko On Stage!”.  It’s also sung by Maki, Atsuko Inaba (from the disbanded T&C Bomber), Mika Todd, and Mai Satoda.  Now this one is pretty funny as it’s a bit more lowkey, but at the same time, hearing the girls singing in a hot emotional mess is funny.  It is pretty short though not even making it to 2 minutes.

3. Rock ‘n’ Roll Kenchoushozaichi ~Oboechaina Series~

Next up is a Minimoni song (the technical actual first single with Ai Takahashi as a member of the group and replacment for Mari Yaguchi who left to form ZYX).  It feels like this little era for Minimoni took a strange turn as they went more for a educational route though this song is actually a Chisato Moritaka cover.  As I mentioned before, the song is educational covering prefectures and their capitals by tying it to food as well.  Minimoni’s cover is pretty boogie-woogie sounding and a bit groovy to hear.  I will say it is a slight bit tamer than most of their previous releases, but I do like it teaches things.

4. Morning Musume no Hyokkori Hyoutanjima

I feel like the theme overall for this album so far, is like cutesy J-pop (seems like a lot of the end of 2002 and most of 2003 felt like H!P was going through this kiddy phase).  Morning Musume was definitely guilty of this and this track was actually an A-side for them.  Even though this is one of a couple bizarre songs in their collection, this was also a cover song.  I do like the kind of tropical feel it gave off and it feels like a lot of the members got spotlight.  There was one part that made me wince a little (the ~hyoutanjimaaaaaaa~ line had one girl sound REALLY off pitch, but slide into correction).  It is a decent song nonetheless amongst this crowd of cutesyness.

5. Watashi wa Kono yo de Ichiban Bijin

Continuing on, we have an OST song, this time from “Minimoni ja Movie Okashi na Daibouken!” and it’s a Yuko Nakazawa track (who if I remember correctly, played the villain in said movie).  The song is just as sugary sweet as the movie was, though Yuko sounds like she was having fun with this song.  Honestly though, it’s an OK song, but I’m kind of over it.

6. Haya~i Norimono

Next is a track from the Douyou Pops series (specifically “Shinsaku Douyou Pops 2”).  Damn, there’s just too many kiddy songs on this compilation (this one kind of takes the cake because it is a children’s song).  Arrangement-wise, it’s pretty fitting for the time and I found it amusing that it’s Gaki, Ayaya, Atsuko, and Country Musume’s Asami together here.  Sadly, once again I find myself wanting to skip over it not because it’s bad, but because it’s sugar overload!

7. HEY! Mirai

While this isn’t quite as sugary as previous songs, HEY! Mirai is pretty much known as a cute song due to its tie-in to Koinu Dan no Monogatari.  While I was surprised it did get a PV, it was with cute puppies so that’s always a win!  I do like that there’s some guitarwork here to shake things up for the cute songs and once again enjoying the amount of lines all the girls get.  Decent song, but understandable as an album track/soundtrack song.

8. LA FILLE D’IPANEMA ~Ipanema no Musume~

At least things seem to change for our next track which comes from Kaori Iida, from her first solo album.  I think most fans notice the sheer 180 as this song is sung entirely in French (weird since the original song was sung in Portuguese).  I do like the whole Mediterranean Cafe feel I get from this and a sweet change of pace from the previous 7 tracks.  Plus the saxophone is quite pleasant alongside to smooth arrangement.  While I don’t know how Kaorin did on her pronunciation, it did sound decent.  Overall a pretty cool and chill track.

9. Giniro no Eien

Then we get a random album track from Miki Fujimoto from “MIKI 1”.  While I figured a lot of releases were R&B tinted, Giniro no Eien was definitely catering to the fans that were still under the charm of “SHALL WE LOVE?”.  It does become slightly more poppy in the chorus, but it seems like safe fare from Mikitty.  Overall, it’s a decent track, but a little randomly added to this compilation.

10. Akai Freesia

At least we get to a rather popular song from Melon Kinenbi.  As the group’s 8th single, Akai Freesia might not be what I’d consider an amazing song, but it is a one of their fan-favorites (even then, the 6th Gen auditions had this as its main song).  The song itself is upbeat and mid-tempo.  There was a lot of Ayumi, but she was the groups ace so no surprise…but the remaining 3 did have solos throughout.  Not a favorite of mine, but it’s passable.

11. Eigakan ga Aru Kara sa!

Our next track is another one from a stageplay, this time from Ayaya’s Sougen no Hito OST.  This specific track though is a duet between Ayaya and Ayumi Shibata!  Being another short track (about 1:30 long).  Sadly, we do return to the slightly cute songs.  I feel like the jazzy vibe of the track is nice, but it does also feel like a morning cartoon at points.  Plus, it goes into ~la, la, la~ mode towards the end which is pretty meh.  Still, it’s an ok song, but nothing too memorable.

12. Uwasa no SEXY GUY

Going into something a little more mature, we have Gocchin’s 6th single and I was once again happy to see something different on this album.  I really like the sexier glow from this song and Maki’s vocals suit the arrangement (though the male backup could’ve been left out).  Plus the little bits of James Bond styled guitar licks added some sass to the track.  Good song, overall!

13. Boogie Train ’03

Unlike the random addition of “Giniro no Eien”, I felt like Boogie Train ’03 made a bigger impact to fans.  I actually really like the intro here as it shown off Miki’s vocal skills (plus that high note was great!).  The tune is pretty upbeat and fun to listen to on top of Miki’s full voice that really brought the song together.  Definitely one of the best of that year for sure!

14. Date Biyori

Another random inclusion, an Aya Matsuura song from her sophomore album “T.W.O”.  It feels like the current sound from Country Girls started here.  The track has a strong rockabilly/boogie-woogie sound to it and I’m not arguing one bit because it’s bright and fun to listen to as well.  Definitely another great on this compilation.

15. Hareta Hi no Marine

Then we have an album song from Maki’s first solo album “Makking GOLD 1”.  I was surprised that Tsunku opened the song with ~HAVE A GOOD DAY!!!~ and kind of doing his typical backing he does in various other H!P songs.  I want to like this song, but it feels rather generic and forgetful compared to other songs here.

16. Ganbacchae!

So the final track was another song that was from Koinu Dan no Monogatari but features Morning Musume, Maki Goto (as she had graduated shortly before this came out), and the Hello! Project Kids (Berryz Kobo & C-ute before they joined their groups).  That said, no surprise it’s another upbeat and cutesy song.  Though to be more correct, Morning Musume and Gocchin had all the solo lines while the other 15 kids had the chant of the title and a few small words here and there.  It’s an OK song, but I never was into this one either.

Tracks Recommended

  • Date Biyori
  • Ne~e?
  • LA FILLE D’IPANEMA ~Ipanema no Musume~
  • Morning Musume no Hyokkori Hyoutanjima
  • Boogie Train ’03

As the 3rd and final H!P Genteiban Hawaii release, I felt this was the weakest of the trio.  Primarily because majority of the album was filled with cutesy kids-like songs and the occasional mature track, but I felt like this was a weak year altogether.  Adding on the short stageplay/movie songs and it just wasn’t working like the 1st two albums did.

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2003 Nendo Hawaii Genteiban Hello! Project Best ②

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Track Listing

  1. Genki Jirushi no Oomori Song / Minimoni / 4KIDS
  2. Yeah! Meccha Holiday / Aya Matsuura
  3. Morning Musume Single Medley ~Hawaiian~ / Boo Takagi, Morning Musume Coconuts Musume, Miki Fujimoto, Rika Ishii
  4. Te wo Nigitte Arukitai / Maki Goto
  5. Pineapple Paradise / Coconuts Musume, Aya Matsuura, Mai Satoda
  6. BE HAPPY Koi no Yajirobee / Tanpopo
  7. Tokyo Bijin / Yuko Nakazawa
  8. Boyfriend / Miki Fujimoto
  9. Natsu no Yoru wa Danger! / Melon Kinenbi
  10. Ai~n Taisou / Bakatono-sama to Minimoni
  11. ♡Momoiro Kataomoi♡ / Aya Matsuura
  12. Ano Subarashii Ai wo Mou Ichido / Yuko Nakazawa, Maki Goto, Miki Fujimoto
  13. BYE BYE Saigo no Yoru / Country Musume ni Ishikawa
  14. SHALL WE LOVE? / Gomattou
  15. Dekkai Uchuu ni Ai ga Aru (Album version) / Morning Musume

1. Genki Jirushi no Oomori Song

Seems quite funny that this song would open the 2nd Genteiban (because the other A-side, “Okashi Tsukutte Okkasui~!” did the first).  Being that this was a pretty important song for Minimoni with this acting as Mari Yaguchi’s goodbye single and as Ai Takahashi introduction to the group and the debut (and only song) to feature 4KIDS, which were 4 of the H!P Kids (Maimai, Airi, Risako, and Maasa) but they were the background ~YAY~ and chanters of the song.  The song is definitely one of the more memorable songs for the group being goofy and child-like which worked all-around and the music and arrangement being just as cute, yet strange (PV included).  Odd way to start this album, but fun song to listen to occasionally.

2. Yeah! Meccha Holiday

Being one of the bigger songs in Ayaya’s discography, this summer ditty was surprising to listen to for sure!  The opening screams summer vibes and Aya’s bright vocals really give it that vibrant push, but there’s that odd drop with the verses to take some slight Indian vibes which I never expected after the intro.  Odd song, but it’s easy to fall in love with this song, it’s just such a quirky and exciting track for sure!

3. Morning Musume Single Medley ~Hawaiian~

  • The☆Pea~ce!
  • Renai Revolution 21
  • I WISH
  • Summer Night Town
  • LOVE Machine
  • Souda! We’re ALIVE
  • Happy Summer Wedding
  • The☆Pea~ce!

So during the time, quite an interesting twist of releases happened where Boo Takagi collaborated with various H!P members and released an album (and single) to cater to more of the crowd in Hawaii.  Why this didn’t open or close this album beats me, but it’s here.  Featuring Momusu, Coconuts Musume (which was only Ayaka and Mika at this point), Mikitty (before she joined Momusu), and a recently newly announced member at the time, Rika Ishii.  As the title implies it’s a medley of Momusu’s bigger songs and it carries itself quite well and the transitions are nice (although I’m a little disappointed that “Summer Night Town” was reduced to only the ~smile, smile, smile~ line and the song moved on).  While it was nice to see something different and hearing new takes on these songs, not gonna lie, but I would’ve rather heard these songs without Takagi…seemed to clash with the already clashing female vocals going on here…

4. Te wo Nigitte Arukitai

Moving on, we get into a Gocchin song, which was her 3rd A-side and boy did it step the wrong way after her first two singles.  What I mean is that both “Ai no Bakayarou” and “Afurechau…BE IN LOVE” were more serious and under R&B and then suddenly we’re slapped with Te wo Nigitte Arukitai which is just super sugary and definitely a dropoff for Gocchin who I never thought was one for cutesy songs.  While I do say vocally she was on point, this song is just not in her character and to me seemed like the black sheep A-side in her discography.

5. Pineapple Paradise

Ahh, we’re back to some rarities here!  Coming from the “Douyou Pop” series of albums, Pineapple Paradise is a mix of vocals from Ayaya, Ayaka, Mika, and Mai.  After the previous track, this seems to make sense as it is a cover of a children’s song and all, but boy does this arrangement sound cheaply made.  Minus the arrangement, the vocals are solid, although I recognized Mika and Aya’s vocals (Mai was also newly introduced at this point).  Simple song overall.

6. BE HAPPY Koi no Yajirobee

Next up is a song from Tanpopo (specifically 3rd Gen which consisted of Gaki, Ayumin, Konkon, and Charmy).  The song itself never really connected to me very much because I wasn’t a big fan of any of the vocals beyond Shibata’s which is ironic considering this is a Momusu sub-group.  The verses consist mostly of rapping and some slow lines to a slower chorus which sounds almost bland and forgettable.  Mehhhhh.

7. Tokyo Bijin

Surprised to see a Yuko song make the cut, but here we are with Tokyo Bijin and honestly it’s not something of the Enka variety.  As this was after her transition to a more calmer and brighter J-pop setting.  Beyond the the acoustic guitar arrangement and Yuko’s clear vocals, the song is a bit of a blur to me and yet it surprises me with that weird triplet section at the end of the choruses.  Still, it’s standard, but it’s not offensive.

8. Boyfriend

I could say the same about Mikitty’s solo track for the release, but it’s R&B flavored (something I would’ve expected from Maki).  As her 4th single, Miki had already started to show off her vocal prowess and was now covering the current trend of having a Western R&B kick to her sound, which I thought worked for her in some of the best ways possible!  Actually, thinking about it, it does remind me of Gocchin’s first two singles quite strange.  Still, it’s one of Miki’s better A-sides though most were pretty good regardless LOL.

9. Natsu no Yoru wa Danger!

Moving to Melon Kinenbi’s 6th single, Natsu no Yoru wa Danger! is a song I don’t hear too much about these days, but after listening to it, it makes me wonder what H!P was going for because it just doesn’t stand up to MANY of the groups other A-sides.  I mean I suppose the R&B/funk/disco sound might sound like it would be interesting, but I find myself tuning the song out and there’s just so much Tsunku here lol.  Also, so much Shibata…actually listening to the song more…it definitely comes off as a scrapped Taiyou to Ciscomoon song so extremely closely…

10. Ai~n Taisou

Here we go again with another Minimoni song, this time the primary A-side (the other -side, “Ai~n Dance no Uta”, was on the previous album).  Unlike it’s trance-ladened sister A-side, Ai~n Taisou is more of a march, that is almost a little too out of place lol.  The music is like a Disney march and making the face of having your head chopped off is just so extreme and absurd (maybe that’s the humor in it).  Also, for being 3 minutes long, it sure does take its time getting there for some reason, but it’s the sheer repetition that just drags it for so long.  I mean, it’s OK for the most part, but just not my kind of song.

11. ♡Momoiro Kataomoi♡

Another Aya song huh?  Actually the other big summer song it seems to make the cut and between this and “Yeah! Meccha Holiday”, this one is more faithful to the season and just sounds like a beach day with bright colors and everything!  There’s not much to say about it though because it’s so straightforward as it is, but it’s a fan favorite and I sure can see why.

12. Ano Subarashii Ai wo Mou Ichido

Next up is a song from the “FOLK SONGS” series of albums which were covers of famous songs that in a much lighter song.  As this has an acoustic touch, I feel like this should’ve been near Yuko and Miki’s solo song because of the similarities between the three.  The song itself is pleasant and upbeat especially with Yuko, Miki, and Maki together, their vocals just blend real nicely together.  Good track overall!

13. BYE BYE Saigo no Yoru

As the last single for this iteration of Country Musume (AKA last single for Rika Ishikawa), BYE BYE Saigo no Yoru might’ve been the last, but it wasn’t without the final cute slap.  After Rinne left, I wasn’t sure where the group was heading and this song is vocally weak because Rika and Asami were cute vocalists while Mai was still trying to find her place in the group and she ended up sticking out so much due to that.  I don’t know, there wasn’t much to the track otherwise…actually the arrangement was a bit lazy-sounding to be quite honest.  Much happier when Konkon, Mikitty, and Miuna joined the ranks after this though.

14. SHALL WE LOVE?

Yay, 3 of the prominent soloists came together for a super unit (for the time) and they had an interesting name as Gomattou.  It’s about as R&B as it gets which is pretty impressive in itself.  The opening dialogue was unexpected but welcomed.  I mean let’s be honest, its’ a legendary song and all three ladies sound amazing here!  Yeah, pretty neat track overall!

15. Dekkai Uchuu ni Ai ga Aru (Album version)

Scary how the most popular group didn’t have a song until the end of the album (well, where it’s just only the group).  Being the song mostly everyone connects to as a tour closer, Dekkai Uchuu ni Ai ga Aru never stood out to me beyond the organ intro, but the song is just that happy-go-lucky ending track.  Now the different between the B-side cut and this album version is the latter is entirely sung in unison whereas the B-side cut has a couple duo/trio sections…otherwise appropriate ending this album, but not a song that I care for.

Tracks Recommended

  • SHALL WE LOVE?
  • Yeah! Meccha Holiday
  • Ano Subarashii Ai wo Mou Ichido
  • Morning Musume Single Medley ~Hawaiian~
  • Genki Jirushi no Oomori Song

So here we are on the 2nd of the Hawaii-only best releases and honestly, beyond the 5 songs above, the other tracks were kind of in the middle of the field or lower.  I’m not sure why, but this selection didn’t really catch my eye and the songs reminded me easily that there was WAY better songs out there at the time.  Compared to the first best, this was a lesser experience…I hope the 3rd and last one will at least end on a high note!

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2003 Nendo Hawaii Genteiban Hello! Project Best ①

Track Listing

  1. Okashi Tsukutte Okkasui~! / Minimoni
  2. Shiawase Beam! Suki Suki Beam! / Happy♡7
  3. Shiawase Desu ka? / Sexy 8
  4. Shiawase Kyouryuu Ondo / Odoru11
  5. Iroppoi Onna ~SEXY BABY~ / Country Musume ni Ishikawa Rika
  6. Romantic Ukare Mode / Miki Fujimoto
  7. Murasaki Shibiku / Michiyo Heike
  8. Makenai Makentakunai / Petitmoni
  9. Seishun Jidai / Yuko Nakazawa / Maki Goto / Miki Fujimoto
  10. Ikimasshoi! / Morning Musume
  11. Aka Tonbo / Kaori Iida / Ayumi Shibata / Miki Fujimoto
  12. Ai~n! Dance no Uta / Bakatono-sama to Minimoni-hime
  13. Momen no Handkercheif / Yuko Nakazawa
  14. The Bigaku / Aya Matsuura
  15. Kousui / Melon Kinenbi
  16. Yaruki! IT’S EASY / Maki Goto

1. Okashi Tsukutte Okkasui~!

So our first collection of songs opens up with a Minimoni song (weird!).  Anyways, the song was a part of the final single Mari Yaguchi took part in (disregarding the Minihams single).  Just like most of their singles, the song really shows off how weird the quartet is (especially with Aibon and Nono) and Miki has the nicest tone here which is pretty odd too.  The song is pretty quick and goofy lyrically (at one point, the verses talk about cake)…yeah.  While I enjoy “Genki Jirushi no Oomori Song” better, it’s an OK track and suits the children’s group.

2. Shiawase Beam! Suki Suki Beam!

For some reason, I guess the shuffle units were put next (really bizarre coming after Minimoni though >.>).  I definitely still remember this song because of the odd video game references the PV make.  The song is pretty cutesy too although I couldn’t remember how it went when I returned to this song either.  The islandy-ish sound is pretty unique and the members sound decent (even if the Momusu members got a LOT more facetime than the not ones).  Not my favorite of the shuffle units in the year.

3. Shiawase Desu ka?

Considering this was the shuffles of “happiness”, Shiawase Desu ka? is anything but that haha.  Pulling a more mature vibe (a cool R&B style), I actually got into this really quickly!  All 8 members have a decent amount of lines (though most go to Maki Goto unsurprisingly as she’s got the opening dialogue). I’m going to be honest though Rika and Yossie just didn’t fit the song and I’m not sure why their vocals clash as much as they do here (leaving Ayaka, Masae, Mai, and Michiyo to kind of forgotten…Still a decent song though.

4. Shiawase Kyouryuu Ondo

Being the bizarro group (with the remaining H!P girls involved).  I mean this might rank up their as one of the oddest H!P songs to be in existance to be quite honest and its PV doesn’t help much at all.  I will say the originality is just so interesting to listen and having 11 members try to have solo lines is funny but neat!  Might not be as cool like Sexy 8’s song, but there’s something VERY unique about this song.

5. Iroppoi Onna ~SEXY BABY~

Being the song that introduced us to Mai Satoda (and was the last for the last original member, Rinne Toda), I was unsure where this song was going considering the whole “ni Ishikawa Rika” phase was mostly cutesy, girly songs.  Minus the awkward Tsunku-ness, Iroppoi Onna was a tad bit more dance-ish and serious but with some country twang to it.  It’s funny though that Rika and Mai led majority of the song and considering the latter’s first time appearance, she did a pretty solid job.  It’s a pretty good Country Musume song though and one of my favorites from CM.

6. Romantic Ukare Mode

Then we get into one of Mikitty’s big songs.  During her days as a soloist, Miki was a surprise no one was expecting, especially vocally and Romantic Ukare Mode showed us how great she can be with this fun pop track.  Arrangement-wise, this might not be totally anything special, but I think Miki gave us a nicely sung track and while I’ve talked about this song a lot, it’s still something on my iPod today!

7. Murasaki Shibiku

Another song I’ve talked about before, Murasaki Shibiku is known more for being Michiyo’s last work under H!P and it shows because after some leagues of ballads, this song has a more ethnic kind of flavoring and Michiyo’s voice is sounding wispy, yet mature and I quite enjoy it especially when she opens up in the chorus.  I just find this song exotic and very cool (sad that it was Michiyo’s final single though).

8. Makenai Maketakunai

Getting into the more stranger part of this compilation we get a Petitmoni song from their first album (funny enough, the ONLY new song from said album).  I thought the opening of the song was cute and promising, but when the verses hit, the song slows down a bit and has the light R&B-ish kind of glow to it.  With Gocchin, Kei-chan, and Yossie at the reins, this song is kind of catchy after a while, but it doesn’t compare to other songs in their small discography.

9. Seishun Jidai

Another oddball set of additions in this compilation are songs from the “FOLK SONGS” set of releases (which I may or may not talk about in the future xD).  More specifically we tackle the 3rd album which had Mikitty, Gocchin, and Yuko-san singing together.  It’s also a cover (the whole series are nothing but covers).  I do like that it’s one of the more upbeat songs from the releases and hearing the three is quite impressive (Yuko the most, she fits this kind of song).  It’s just a cool song overall and one of my favorites on this release.

10. Ikimasshoi!

A song from Morning Musume’s 4th album, this brought me back to a good time!  Being a title track, Ikimasshoi! is differently a crowd exciter.  I mean it’s very upbeat has a certain call/response like arrangement, every member has a solo somewhere in the song which is pretty awesome.  While I can say some weak singers are present, they don’t really detract from the song luckily.  Pretty good song overall!

11. Aka Tonbo

On the other hand, we also get a song from the Douyou Pops series of H!P releases (essentially seasonal albums covering children’s songs.  Being a trio of Kaori, Ayumi, and Miki, Aka Tonbo is a strange inclusion because it’s such a kids track.  Though it kind of sounds like a Asian disney track.  I do love the arrangement and I do enjoy the trio’s voice though I’m not sure if I heard Ayumi’s voice in the track…still it’s OK, but not the most memorable track from this album.

12. Ai~n! Dance no Uta

Interesting to see another Minimoni track make the cut more or less the goofy one from the original 4 members.  Hello! Project and trance never really clashed together and with this song that collision finally happened (albeit with Bakatono-sama (a comedian)).  This track is just wild and crazy and hearing the 4 Minimoni members just try to keep up with the tempo is just entertaining!  Really strong song overall!

13. Momen no Handkercheif

From the 2nd “FOLK SONGS” we get another cover, this time a Yuko solo.  I was already knowing that she would pull off a song like this and for what it’s worth, Momen no Handkercheif is a nice sounding ballad from her.  Sadly, that album was chock-full of ballads which didn’t make a song like this pop out.  Still it’s decent and stood out on this album luckily, but still not the best.

14. The Bigaku

Only one Ayaya song here huh?  The Bigaku was a pretty fun song to listen from her as it’s upbeat and her vocals made the song pop so much better than it should!  I’m loving the brass-heavy arrangement and the bass is pretty bangin’ here.  It’s one of my favorites in her discography for sure and really sticks out with its energy and great idol sound.

15. Kousui

Argubly Melon Kinenbi’s signature song, Kousui isn’t a favorite of mine but it did a lot for Ayumi Shibata who was the kind of ace in the group.  The kind of pop/R&B filters through the song is pretty interesting and hearing Ayumi is pleasant as her lighter vocals just suit the acoustic arrangement.  Nice track overall!

16. Yaruki! IT’S EASY

Interesting this album would close out with Yaruki! IT’S EASY as it doesn’t really have that closing feel like “Kousui” or even “Momen no Handkercheif” has.  Being Gocchin’s 4th single, this song sounds cute but has a certain 80’s pop feel which caught my attention VERY quickly.  I do love the synthwork here and Maki sounds good in this song and has a certain snap to her vocals.  Still one of my favorites from her for sure, just wasn’t sure if it was a good closing

Tracks Recommended

  • Yaruki! IT’S EASY
  • Shiawase Desu ka?
  • Romantic Ukare Mode
  • The Bigaku
  • Ikimasshoi!

So yeah there’s some explanations to be had…this album is the first of 3 compilation albums solely released in Hawaii (when UP-FRONT had a branch out in the U.S. of course they had other releases (all were best albums except a single that was released by Coconuts Musume).

2003 Nendo Hawaii Genteiban Hello! Project Best ① is an OK compilation.  It’s nice to see stuff from FOLK SONGS and Douyou Pops be included since those albums (to me) flew under the radar.  As for the remaining tracks, a lot simply came from the Petit Best albums (sans a couple album songs).  It’s interesting to say the least and I’m curious how the other two will fare.

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REVIEW: Hello! Project no Zenkyoku Kara Atsumechaimashita! Vol 5 & 6

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Track Listing

  1. Inspiration! / Morning Musume
  2. Banzai! ~Jinsei wa Meccha Wonderful!~ / Erina Mano
  3. THE Manpower!!! / Morning Musume
  4. Dakishimete…Namida / Ongaku Gatas
  5. Koi no Hana / Natsumi Abe
  6. ENDLESS LOVE ~I Love You More~ / °C-ute
  7. Busu ni Naranai Tetsugaku / Hello! Project Mobekimasu
  8. Gatamekira (ZYX Ver.) / ZYX
  9. Onna, Kanashii, Otona / Sexy Otonajan
  10. Urahara / Buono!
  11. 16sai no Koi Nante / Natsumi Abe & Maimi Yajima
  12. Oshare! / Aya Matsuura
  13. Ten Made Nobore! / Juice=Juice
  14. “,,,Suki da yo!” / Morning Musume
  15. Yaruki! IT’S EASY (Hello! Project 2007 Winter ~Wonderful Hearts Otome Goroco~ Live Audio) / Reina Tanaka, Chinami Tokunaka, Yurina Kumai, Erika Umeda, Kanna Arihara
  16. tofubeats no 10bun de Tanoshimeru “Hello! Project no Zenkyoku Kara Atsumechaimashita! Vol.5”

1. Inspiration!

Kicking Vol. 5 off, we begin with the B-side from one of Momusu’s biggest singles, “Renai Revolution 21”.  Being as this is Yuko Nakazawa’s final single, she didn’t have as much of a goodbye like many others had.  Inspiration! to me kind of focused more on the new members from the 4th Generation than anything else.  What stood out for me was the funky beats of the arrangement that almost made me think of DANCE MAN.  That bass and brass just filled everywhere and I enjoyed it…made for a great intro!

2. Banzai! ~Jinsei wa Meccha Wonderful!~

Moving onto an album song from ManoEri’s 3rd album, “More Friends Over”, Banzai! was the first vocal track and Erina’s voice just kind of excited me with her chanting and yelps and I thought that was cute.  This was also where I was starting to warm up to her vocals and she was getting slowly better as a vocalist.  Over time, this track has grown on me, but it still is rather repetitive (especially that chorus >.>) how many time does she say ~banzai and lucky~?  Really ManoEri?

3. THE Manpower!!!

Ah back to Morning Musume so quickly?  As much as I love the updated version, I have a special place for the original since it has a lot more oomph and more easier to follow lines for the ladies.  I’ve always enjoyed this song with the empowerment lyrics and the groovy arrangement that went with it.  Add on the epic singing by Ai-chan and Yossie and this just came together like a puzzle piece.  There’s just something that makes me want to the dance with this tune because it’s rather easy and still cool.  Even the ~homosapiens~ line gets a smile out of me…it’s such a classic and a great song for Kaori to graduate in.

4. Dakishimete…Namida

So comes our next track from Ongaku Gatas’ only album and this track was a pretty solid song fitting after the singles that came before it so it’s a disco-laced track.  Though it does seem that most of the vocals were predominantly for the more established H!P members: Yossie, Charmy, Satoda, and Konkon who were all sounding great and all.  Sengoku and Sawada did have solos too and sung in tandem in the chorus with Rika, Yossie, and Mai.  The rest of the girls sung in two areas and that was it (Nocchi had one solo line).  Still this song sounded pretty good and the ad-libbing was quite nice and MUCH better than in “Narihajimeta Koi no BELL”.  Cool song though!

5. Koi no Hana

Oooh, a Nacchi solo next?  Cool beans.  When I heard this song, I kind of get this deja vu to Janet Jackson’s “Doesn’t Really Matter” or Hitomi Shimatani’s “papillon” (they’re the same song essentially just different languages).  Something about this bubbly R&B sound and plucked strings just sound familar of course the melody is totally diffferent.  Nacchi though sounds super light here and it sounds a little weird in places for some reason.  Pretty song though hm…..

6. ENDLESS LOVE ~I Love You More~

Before we go in, this is a cover of a Taiyou & Ciscomoon track that was found on °C-ute’s first album.  I figured it wouldn’t be as good so I didn’t come in with high hopes.  It’s not a terrible track and honestly for a song that sounds like 90’s urban pop, which is a little more exciting than the original, they executed this smoothly.  I mean yeah the main vocalists were Airi, Maimi, Megumi, and Erika (wait, Erika?) Yeah that was the case.  The other four might’ve just not existed in the song (the only moments I tend to remember is when they sing the title after the chorus).  Still it’s a nice cover despite they are VERY underneath the original singers.

7. Busu ni Naranai Tetsugaku

I had just reviewed the group and song last month…*sighs*.  I don’t even know why I should talk about this group again.  It’s pretty much a 2011 Mega Group that happened within H!P and sadly doesn’t even showcase more than a tenth of the group xD.  The song itself isn’t so bad after you get over the fact only like 8/9 members have solo lines, but hey the song is interesting with the brass/pop/dance mixture.  Not much else I can say that I haven’t already.

8. Gatamekira (ZYX Ver.)

Another Taiyou & Ciscomoon cover?  Jeeze the shade found on this album right now!  As the B-side from the group’s debut single, “Iku ZYX! FLY HIGH”, their cover of Gatamekira is kind of disappointing.  I will say that the change in arrangement is quirky enough, and the verses of the song sounded good (for ZYX), everything else sounded weird.  I HATE the vocal layering they did to the chorus (even Mari!).  It just didn’t come close to the original…it lacked that feel to it.

9. Onna, Kanashii, Otona

Next up is Sexy Otonajan which was Miki Fujimoto, Miyabi Natsuyaki, and Megumi Murakami and they got a pretty extreme song.  I wasn’t expecting such an adult song from two of the H!P Kids, though made sense with Mikitty LOL.  I just love the bossa nova/jazz vibes from this song and by god Miki sounds beautiful in this song.  Actually Megumi does as well and that makes me so confused.  I will admit, Miyabi’s voice kind of sucks in this song but she was really young here as was her partner.  Odd song to give such emphasis on the younger voices, but Miki made it alright.  Pretty song overall and I fell in love with Miki HARD in this song.

10. Urahara

I was happy to see a Buono! song make one of these, though surprised it was one of the lighter songs in their collection, Urahara.  It’s funny that this is here because this is Miyabi later on after Sexy Otonajan and the tone of her voice is so much better.  I had forgotten how this song went since it’s been a long time since I listened to “We Are Buono!”.  I love the lighter verses and how the chorus opens the song up to their idol pop/rock groove.  Even the guitar solo was pretty badass.  I really do like this song though, one of the better ones during thier high-time.

11. 16sai no Koi Nante

I don’t seem to remember how or why Nacchi and Maimi got together for a song, must be a tie-in thing.  This song is quite breezy and cute to listen to for sure.  Funny how Nacchi’s voice suits the arrangement a LOT better than it did with Maimi, then again I think it’s because of the former’s lighter and cuter voice.  There’s not much I can say about this song because it just kind of stays at the same level most of the way.  Non-offensive basically…I can see this being a good song to listen to whenever it comes up.

12. Oshare!

Hmmm? An Ayaya song is next eh?  From her debut album, “First Kiss”, Oshare! is another one of those non-offensive tracks with not much bad I can say.  It’s a lot lighter than her singles and a focus within the acoustic guitar, the song kind of does remind me of “16sai no Koi Nante” without the random moments and two vocalists.  Actually the disc scratching is probably my only dislike…for some reason it bothers me.  Eh here and there kind of track for me.

13. Ten Made Nobore!

I find it disheartening to be reviewing this as I’m so fed up with hearing this song performed so much (by the Kenshuusei since it’s more their song than Juice=Juice’s).  Like the previous tracks, it’s a breezy, positive song that it kind of forces you to put a smile on your face.  Personally, this version stuck out more because there were solo lines albeit between Karin, Sayuki, Aina, and Tomoko which sucks for the remainder of the group that just kind of sat back.  In a way, Ten Made Nobore! sounds a little better with the KSS, but at least there’s a version with this (I wish the PV was released though….>.> damnit Aina!

14. “,,,Suki da yo!”

As we get closer to the end, we get into the oddest track (sans the megamix of course) with a song that comes from Morning Musume’s “3rd -LOVE Paradise-” album.  This song has always sounded off to me.  Like listening to the song in headphones drives me nuts.  All of the solos I hear is on my right ear and the music sounds like it’s purposely muted out so everything sounds muddled and makes me want to push my headphones in all the way even though it already is.  Without the earplugs, the song is rather nice and quiet and harbors a nice little melody, but I wished there was more bass to the song and the girls weren’t singing on one side of my headphone…that’s annoying!

15. Yaruki! IT’S EASY (Hello! Project 2007 Winter ~Wonderful Hearts Otome Goroco~ Live Audio)

One of my favorite Gocchin songs, I was surprised tofubeats would include a live version over the original, but I suppose it’s a popular track to be performed.  Reina, Chinami, Yurina, Erika, and Kanna take over and it would be an interesting take.  No surprise that Reina took lead here as she has most of the lines as it is.  Yurina and Erika get two and Chinami and Kanna have a singular solo line.  It’s OK, nothing to really comment on but everyone was good vocally I’d say.  Not bad!

16. tofubeats no 10bun de Tanoshimeru “Hello! Project no Zenkyoku Kara Atsumechaimashita! Vol.5”

  • Yaruki! IT’S EASY (Hello! Project 2007 Winter ~Wonderful Hearts Otome Goroco~ Live Audio)
  • Inspiration!
  • Onna, Kanashii, Otona
  • Banzai! ~Jinsei wa Meccha Wonderful!~
  • Ten Made Nobore!
  • Koi no Hana
  • “,,,Suki da yo!”
  • Dakishimete…Namida
  • Gatamekira (ZYX Ver.)
  • ENDLESS LOVE ~I Love You More~
  • THE Manpower!!!
  • Urahara
  • 16sai no Koi Nante
  • Oshare!
  • 16sai no Koi Nante
  • Watashi ga Obaasan ni Nattemo

Ending the compilation is a megamix from tofubeats (the guy that picked out the songs).  Actually the list above is the songs that are used here.  No surprise that most of the album is a part of it, although his omission of “Busu ni Naranai Tetsugaku” is a little strange here.  Also, the fact that we get 16sai no Koi Nante and Watashi ga Obaasan ni Nattemo from who knows is odd to be honest.  Not sure why they’re included although it sounds like Maimi singing it all on her own, but I’m not 100% sure.  Overall, it’s not bad, but these songs for the most part don’t seem good mixed together.

Tracks Recommended

  • THE Manpower!!!
  • Dakishimete…Namida
  • Onna, Kanashii, Otona
  • Urahara
  • Busu ni Naranai Tetsugaku

You know what, from tofubeats, I was expecting the big hitters to come from him, not so much the selection we ended up with.  Most of the songs had issues or were kind of on the safe side of things.  I’m not sure why he chose what he did, but it was difficult to get through this one.  Add on the near 10 minute megamix and I was just over it for the most part.  So basically it’s a 6/10.

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Track Listing

  1. One・Two・Three / Morning Musume
  2. Kanojo ni Naritai!!! / Hello! Pro Kenshuusei
  3. Ijiwaru Shinaide Dakishimete yo / Juice=Juice
  4. Fantasy ga Hajimaru / Morning Musume
  5. Hatsukoi Cider / Buono!
  6. Zettai Tokeru Mondai X=♥ / Aya Matsuura
  7. BE HAPPY Koi no Yajirobee / Tanpopo
  8. Otoko Tomodachi / Morning Musume
  9. DANCE Suru no da! / Morning Musume
  10. VERY BEAUTY / Berryz Koubou
  11. Ai no Sono ~Touch My Heart!~ / Morning Musume Otomegumi
  12. Loving you Too much / Berryz Koubou
  13. Kanashiki Amefuri / °C-ute
  14. What is LOVE? / Morning Musume ’14
  15. Sekaiichi HAPPY na Onna no Ko / °C-ute
  16. Ne~e? / Aya Matsuura
  17. Shin Nippon no Susume! / S/mileage
  18. 1-oku 3-senman Sou Diet Oukoku / Berryz Koubou

1. One・Two・Three

Neat that this compilation would begin with Momusu’s extravagant 50th single (sans “The Matenrou Show”).  There was something so surprising when this song sounded so EDM-friendly and pumped up (even though we had a preview with “Renai Hunter” earlier one single prior.  Opening with Reina’s ~whoa-oh’s~ this song opened up with a pretty cool arrangement and edgy vocals too.  Granted those vocals were synthed up to all hell, but I loved it.  Most of the song is really between Reina and Riho and for fans of the other ladies, you were kind of screwed (especially for Zukki and Eripon fans who all had a SYLLABLE from them as well as Duu and Harunan).  Besdies that, this song was pretty big and it’s still an awesome song to hear (plus they did redo it without Reina’s voice, but…ehhhhhh).

2. Kanojo ni Naritai!!!

Next up is another Kenshuusei song, actually the trainees first big release as a collective group, Kanojo ni Naritai!!!.  This version is from the CD release which means this is the one that only had 5 of the ladies take part: Karin Miyamoto, Nanami Tanabe, Ayano Hamaura, Natsumi Taguchi, and Aina Otsuka.  Like “Ten Made Nobore!” this song has been performed to death and I also seem to have reach that point of being tired of listening to it.  It’s VERY genki and the whole ~I wanna be your girl!~ does seem slightly desperate sounding lol.  I do like the energy and song sounds similar to S/mileage’s “Uchouten LOVE” which is also another plus.  Overall, it’s a solid song, but definitely overdone today.

3. Ijiwaru Shinaide Dakishimete yo

Wow, all these recent songs!  As Juice=Juice’s 2nd major single, Ijiwaru Shinaide Dakishimete yo definitely stands out with its cool vibes and solid vocals, especially from Tomoko who just reigned all over this song IMO.  It’s a cool song for sure and something I could’ve saw Taiyou to Ciscomoon perform (oh damn that’d be cool).  I really love the atmosphere here and the group just oozes cool here.

4. Fantasy ga Hajimaru

Now we’re slowly going back, well at least to the Platinum Era with I would say the title track from Momusu’s “Fantasy! Juuichi”.  It was definitely the stand-out track here with such a strong EDM feel (that wasn’t existant or delved into at the time).  At that time, I was starting to get a hang of the voices, so I was really surprised that the voice I loathed in Momusu in the Platinum era (sans Koharu who had left by this point) was Sayumi.  Being the weakest vocalist must’ve sucked but for some reason Tsunku and his unbridled genius had found the thing that would make Sayu sound so cool and that’s auto-tune.  Normally it would kill great voices (Gaki may be the exception) but to a weaker voice, it’s a really cool effect and it’s no wonder why it works every single time for her.  Pretty funny though that Sayu, Ai-chan, and Reina are the only ones to really have solos here.  I really do love this song and so happy its amongst favorites of mine.

5. Hatsukoi Cider

I remembered this song especially for being the ending theme for Suugaku♥Joshi Gakuen and being a little more appropriate than “Pyocopyoco Ultra” was LOL.  As their well (last single released), Hatsukoi Cider opens with a solo from Airi before it becomes a lighter track from the group, almost like “Natsu Dakara!”.  I did quite enjoy this song and showed a nicer and clean side of the group.  I mean it doesn’t surpass other badass tracks they’ve had, but it was nice…now if only Buono! actually came back >.>

6. Zettai Tokeru Mondai X=♥

Another Ayaya song that comes from her debut album, “First Kiss”, Zettai Tokeru Mondai X=♥ is a pretty rockin’ track in her collection, which is surprising that it came after Buono!’s song because it just sounds like a perfect song to cover eh?  There should be more I should say about this song, but it’s what it is, a really strong pop/rock track from Ayaya.

7. BE HAPPY Koi no Yajirobee

Funny I had to review this song.  From the 3rd Generation of Tanpopo (Gaki, Konkon, Charmy, and Ayumin from Melon Kinenbi), BE HAPPY Koi no Yajirobee would be the group’s only single AND the final single under Tanpopo.  As I had grown to really love the serious, once the 2nd Generation jumped in, I was so disheartened by the lack of serious songs Tanpopo lacked.  By the time 3rd Generation started, I was surprised that Shibata was included because she wasn’t from Momusu.  Then I heard this track and was like WTF is this.  I mean you have 3 weak vocalists (Gaki was a pretty awkward sounding member in her early days) and they were pseudo-rapping and all over the place and then you have Ayumi who sounded way too good to be in a group like this.  It was a strange song and it’s no surprise that no one really talks about this Generation much (though they were pretty shortlived as it is).

8. Otoko Tomodachi

Next up we get Otoko Tomodachi, an album track from Momusu’s “4th “Ikimashoi!””.  Now what must be pointed out is that it’s essentially a Nacchi solo but with backup vocals from the newly joined 5th Generation.  That said, there’s not much to say besides that it’s an upbeat track and Nacchi’s vocals are as you expect and the 5th Generation might as well not have existed, you barely hear them.  You would think Tsunku learned after “Furusato” that it isn’t too good to solo songs.  At least it wasn’t an A-side.  I do like the sitar twangs to the song, but it’s a song that just doesn’t do anything for me.

9. DANCE Suru no da!

Jumping back an album to “3rd -LOVE Paradise-“, we have DANCE Suru no da! which is one of the few Momusu album tracks to get a PV.  Albeit, the PV is kind of weird because it’s only found in a video game, Space Venus, that was released on the PS2 (which is basically the equivalent of the Spice Girls PS1 game, Spice World, that had come out for us Westerners.  Now this song came out at a time where Sayaka Ichii was still in the group and the 4th Generation hadn’t happened yet (the PV is the opposite).  I love that all the members got a solo line of sorts and it’s to a pretty fun beat and style (that almost wants to be funk, but isn’t quite there).  It’s a lighthearted song and definitely one of the better songs from the album IMO.

10. VERY BEAUTY

Oh the engrishness here.  Going to Berryz’ 13th A-side, I wasn’t expecting the group to release a rather slower toned song since they really haven’t been known for that otherwise.  As such, VERY BEAUTY is quite a different ball game for the group and I kind of enjoyed the change.  I didn’t exactly like the fact that it was a Risako/Miyabi/Yurina hog fest with no solo lines given to Maasa, Captain, and Momoko period.  Risako to me was still getting used to her vocals it seemed while Miyabi sounded like she was starting to transition as was Yurina.  Overall, the song is kind of OK, but not one of my highly liked Berryz songs.

11. Ai no Sono ~Touch My Heart!~

So we get our Momusu sub-group, MM Otomegumi.  Now I have mentioned they were formed because the group was so large and Tsunku wanted to tackle more places and he could with the split idea.  So he chose Miki, Reina, Sayumi, Kaori, Nozomi, Makoto, and Rika to tackle the more energetic songs (simply put they weren’t the strongest singers, sans Miki, Makoto, and Kaori).  What they got was the suggestive but really epic track, Ai no Sono.  This song was such a bopper and I love the fierceness of members here, they were ones not to mess with.  Especially Miki…I would’ve loved to hear a solo version from her personally!  Actually Tsuji sounded really good here too despite being in the less prominent areas.  Yeah, the song was mostly sung by Miki, Reina, Rika, and Makoto while the remaining three just has two solo lines each.  Still I LOVE this song and it’s definitely one of the best H!P songs out there IMHO.

12. Loving you Too much

Oh, I see we’re coming back up to more recent songs, Loving you Too much is originally a B-side to Berryz Koubou’s “cha cha SING” single and as such was also a Bird Thongchai cover.  It seems nowadays I actually prefer listening to this song over the aforementioned A-side because it does have a little more personality and depth to it (I feel like cha cha SING had the memorability though).  I also love that every member got a decent amount of solo lines (plus the rapping section was awesome for Captain, not so much Miyabi >.>).  Being a Thai cover, I was expecting something cool and this song is cute and party-central and I loved it.  Even strong enough to get its own single (technically a Single V) but still counts.  Very cool song and one of the top Berryz songs (despite being a cover).

13. Kanashiki Amefuri

So their sister group, °C-ute comes next was one of the more recent songs as well (as of this power this was released just last year).  With Tsunku currently on his EDM spree, Kanashiki Amefuri was another addition under that rule and like I’ve said in reviews here and on my other blog, it’s a song that sounds perfect for fashion shows and the PV really aced on that idea.  It was pretty much at this point that the main singers would be Airi, Maimi, and Chisato and they do a pretty awesome job and mainining such power in their vocals (especially Chisato who has been climbing up the vocal ladder for quite some time, at least as far back as “Kiss me Aishiteru”.  It’s a pretty cool song from °C-ute and solid choice for this release.

14. What is LOVE?

As part of the first single released under Morning Musume ’14, What is LOVE? is a pretty big song outside of Japan being a big theme for J-MELO.  Actually, the song is MADE from the show from the fans to the fans.  What an awesome idea it was to put such an emphasis on that aspect and what came out of it was GREAT.  Yeah, it was known before Momusu had the name change and all, but What is LOVE? is a great song for the group.  Very heavy in its EDM arrangement and honestly probably the heaviest of the bunch this year.  I still do feel the ~is it necessary?~ lines from Maachan and Sayu humorous, but it’s so practical and charming that it made the song even better!  What a great track here!

15. Sekaiichi HAPPY na Onna no Ko

Wait we just had a °C-ute song, now another?  5 singles that are in between this and “Kanashiki Amefuri”, Sekaiichi HAPPY na Onna no Ko is been an odd song to me.  Actually, I’ve never been a fan of this one because most of the girls are singing in a higher range and it sounds REALLY weird on some members (looking at you Chisato and Nakky).  Also, the song could’ve gone to Buono! since it does have that certain pop/rock feel to it.  I don’t know, but it’s just not that great for me…not sure how the fandom enjoys it though…it didn’t get talked a LOT if I recall.

16. Ne~e?

At least this Ayaya song didn’t come from her debut, it actually came from her 3rd album, “×3”.  This one sounds so funny and has this bright atmosphere about it that makes me smile in a good way.  Considering this was during when Ayaya was still showing off that genki idol style, Ne~e? is one of the more well-known songs and it’s easy to see why.  I do like the cutesy atmosphere and add on Aya’s whispery verses…it’s just fun!  Nice choice!!!

17. Shin Nippon no Susume!

Wow, I am so happy to see this return!  Coming from S/mileage’s 2nd album, Shin Nippon no Susume! was the most extreme intro we had in a LONG time from something other than Momusu.  It starts with a grandeur fanfare that opens to a VERY deep Nyon and Meimi singing.  Then the song kicks into high gear with a speedy arrangement that sounds kind of metal before coming into the idol-friendly chorus.  Honestly, I was hoping S/mileage would have something epic and this is pretty epic!  Though, I think the winner is pretty much Meimi she owned it with every line.  The remaining members don’t seem to be as important having a couple small lines here.  Still, what a badass song, if it wasn’t for “One・Two・Three”, this would’ve perfectly been the opening song again and I’d be fine with that.

18. 1-oku 3-zenman Sou Diet Oukoku

The compilation closes out with a song that’s not even a year old yet!  Berryz’ song makes the final track and I was surprised to see something so recent make the cut!  This song is quite trippy and rambunctious for Berryz and I love it for it.  Of course it’s a track that’s a part of the EDM collection, but there’s something so futuristic about its arrangement that makes it stand out from the rest currently.  Add on the repetitive parts in the song and it just dtives the song down in people’s minds (or annoys them LOL).  Despite being the newest from the Atsumechaimashita! albums, I still love it!

Tracks Recommended

  • Ai no Sono ~Touch My Heart!~
  • Loving you Too much
  • Shin Nippon no Susume!
  • Ijiwaru Shinaide Dakishimete yo
  • One・Two・Three

Chosen by quite a few idol artists, I LOVE this volume quite a bit!  Besides Sekaiichi, BE HAPPY, and Otoko Tomodachi, this tracklist is goddamn near perfect.  I know the songs here are more from the last 5 years with a couple of oldies, but those songs are awesome tracks in their own right.  Tons of memories here and the love for the more epic songs just wowed me.  Have to give props to Oomori Yasuko, Tsuno Maisa (from Akai Kouen), and Yurina (from Jusho Futei Mushoku).  Three ladies ended up with such an awesome tracklist, this is my favorite of the Atsumechaimashita! series as of right now…let’s hope 7 and 8 is coming soon! 9/10

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REVIEW: Hello! Project no Zenkyoku Kara Atsumechaimashita! Vol. 3 & 4

 

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Track Listing

  1. Hana wo Puun / Kira☆Pika
  2. Suki, Suki, Kirai, Kirai, Kirai, Suki. / Minimoni
  3. Grand Demo Rouka Demo Medatsu Kimi / Berryz Koubou
  4. Zentaiteki ni Daisuki Desu. / Sheki-dol
  5. SEXY BOY ~Soyokaze ni Yorisotte~ / Morning Musume
  6. Ookina Ai de Motenashite / °C-ute
  7. Konnichi pa / Kirari Tsukishima starring Koharu Kusumi
  8. Fuwafuwafuu / Melon Kinenbi
  9. Itsuka Oozora no Shita de / Melon Kinenbi
  10. Mangetsu / Miki Fujimoto
  11. Arigatou! Otomodachi / Berryz Koubou
  12. Tsuugaku Ressha / Morning Musume
  13. FIRST KISS / Aa!
  14. Dare ni mo Iwanai de / Erina Mano
  15. Oheso no Kuni Kara Konnichiwa / Hello! Pro Kenshuusei
  16. Gag 100 Kaibun Aishite Kudasai / Berryz Koubou
  17. Yumemiru 15sai / S/mileage
  18. Daite yo! PLEASE GO ON / Maki Goto
  19. This is Unmei / Melon Kinenbi
  20. Minimoni. Dancing / Minimoni

1. Hana wo Puun

Oh god I have to listen to this song again huh?  I suppose I’m going to have to stomach through this.  As the unfortunate choice to start Vol. 3, Hana wo Puun was the leading track off of Kira☆Pika’s only single.  Being as this is Koharu and Maimai singing together, it just really made me cringe listening because it’s increasingly annoying and the vocals are just almost impossible to deal with.  I don’t know, but I quite loathe this song and disliked that this album opened with it!

2. Suki, Suki, Kirai, Kirai, Kirai, Suki.

Then we move into a Minimoni track which is in the similar vein as “Hana wo Puun”.  The song is pretty bizarre because it really throws itself into repetition with all the ~suki, kirai, yume, and mirai’s~ they throw in the song and even though all of the quartet gets solo lines, it just doesn’t fully pull me into it.  Also, it’s rather short coming at a 1:45 in length.  It’s pretty short and doesn’t leave too much of an impression.

3. Grand Demo Rouka Demo Medatsu Kimi

So I feel like the album really begins with our 3rd track which is an album song from Berryz’ “6th Otakebi Album”.  The interesting thing is is that not all of the members are singing here.  Actually, it’s only Yurina and Maasa together!  As the group’s two lower vocalists, the song they were given is actually kind of anison sounding.  It’s cute and the beat is kind of adorable.  Yes, the two ladies did sound like they were slightly struggling to work on their higher notes (especially Kumai).  I still do love that song and is one of my favorites from that album and on here as well!

4. Zentaiteki ni Daisuki Desu.

Wow, I was surprised to see that Sheki-dol would be represented as I had thought that they were a forgotten piece of history.  The song itself though is well-known for being tied to Crayon Shin-chan so it’s appearance might have been supported by that.  As the trio’s 3rd single, Zentaiteki ni Daisuki Desu. stuck to the group’s kind of PUFFY-like rock appeal.  It’s a fun and upbeat track and the trio sounds nice (I kind of like Ibuki’s voice the most, but the remaining two have their moments).  Such a shortlived group with a bright future IMO.

5. SEXY BOY ~Soyokaze ni Yorisotte~

Ah finally something I really love!  As a Momusu single, SEXY BOY was a pretty strong song despite being in an awkward time of losing members and having odd sales numbers to go along with it.  I remember the great beats and the sort of parapara choreography that went with it.  I loved the fact that all of the girls got solo lines and they all sound pretty good especially Ai-chan and Mikitty who gave the best performances here.  Reina was herself and Koharu was ehhhh.  It’s really a mixed bag though.  Still, one of the cooler songs they’ve released.

6. Ookina Ai de Motenashite

I remember when I went back and listened to °C-ute’s early work, I had loved “Massara Blue Jeans” and “Soku Dakishimete” because they were showcasing a cool group with a lot of energy and dance ability.  Then came Ookina Ai de Motenashite and they hammed the cuteness up in every way.  It’s so sugary and adorable that it just overloads my ears.  This is also where we start to see some of the hierarchy between Airi and Maimi being the lead vocalists with Megumi being secondary while the remaining 5 just kind of chilling.  Still for such an early song, it’s still a pretty good song!

7. Konnichi pa

Great, I have to deal with Koharu’s voice again huh?  As a song from her second album, “Kirarin☆Land”, Konnichi pa was kind of during that bridge where Koharu was just purposely singing crappy.  This is almost “Hana wo Puun” levels of bad because I just can’t stand the voice and then a mix of pop/rock/polka?!?  Yeah, there’s some arrangement sections that just sounds like it.  Yeah, this was BAAAAAD!

8. Fuwafuwafuu

Funny, we get the B-side to “Kokuhaku Kinenbi” (since I reviewed it on one of the previous H!P Atsumechaimashita!s).  I was surprised to hear that this was pretty simple Cafe music and the arrangement just sounds very relaxing and laidback and the quartet sounds so quiet and peaceful.  Seems like Shibata and Saito got majority of the lines but Ohtani and Murata got some lengthy lines.  Being as their 2nd B-side ever, Fuwafuwafuu is really pretty and sounds oh so good!

9. Itsuka Oozora no Shita de

One of the odder choices, we get a song from one of H!P’s stageplays.  This song was from the “LOVE CENTURY” play and is sung by the Melon Kinenbi members.  As I still haven’t fully delved into H!P’s album that deal with stageplays (cept for more of the recent ones) I’m listening to this song for the first time.  It sounds like a 90s H!P song with the piano and strings with bass and the quartet sounding happy and go-lucky.  Though it seriously changes into something BABYMETAL fans would find amusing.  Darker and heavier chords and stressed vocals from the members.  It reverts back to the pop stuff and closes off at a little over 2 minutes.  Weird song to choose, but it’s an interesting one nonetheless.

10. Mangetsu

So moving onto Miki’s song, it is an album track from “MIKI 1”.  It does fit along with the selection’s happy motif.  It’s a peppy and funky disco track that kind of reminences H!P of past.  Miki’s voice sounds a lot higher than I remembered in her later days, but she is still packing a punch in this track and I enjoyed.  I like it, but not as much as other Miki songs out there, but it’s one of the better ones.

11. Arigatou! Otomodachi

Another Berryz song eh?  Luckily it actually contains all the members here!  I only seem to remember this song because it was sung by KSS member, Ayano Hamaura recently.  Otherwise this song is just plain to me.  I get the song was the ONLY new song on their first “mini-best” “Special! Best Mini ~2.5 Maime no Kare~”.  I don’t know why but it just buzzes by me with no impact.  Though I was surprised Maasa got a solo next to Momoko, Risako, and Miyabi.  Though I will say they’d sing MUCH better if they perform it again.

12. Tsuugaku Ressha

As the B-side from “Happy Summer Wedding”, Momusu’s Tsuugaku Ressha was an interesting R&B track from the group since it seemed we were leaving their more mature arrangements to more peppy and fun A-sides so this B-side was a nice opposite.  It is weird that while the 4th Generation did exist, they were absent on this one and it was basically all of the “Koi no Dance Site” members.  The smooth nature of the song did bring out some soothing tones from all the members and I enjoyed that the pre-chorus was sung by the 2nd Generation.  Still a pretty pleasant song overall.

13. FIRST KISS

Continuing with the R&B theme, we get Aa! which were a pretty quickly made group to promote Airi, Miyabi, and Reina together for this serious track.  Yeah, the group and company got some flak because Airi and Miyabi were pretty damn young doing this and you can hear it in their voices in the song.  Besides that messy time, FIRST KISS is actually a pretty cool song, despite the vocals being so young.  I actually would’ve loved to hear the trio resing this, but that won’t happen since Reina is gone and soon is Miyabi too.  It’s still a good song though and definitely suited coming after “Tsuugaku Ressha”.

14. Dare ni mo Iwanai de

Hmmm, a ManoEri song next huh.  Being from her sophomore album, “MORE FRIENDS”, this song actually is the track placed before “Do Re Mi Fa Doushite?” (a song that I had reviewed on a previous Atsumechaimashita! album as well).  Anywho, Dare ni mo Iwanai de is a song I’m not too intrigued by.  It sounds a bit too lightweight and kind of easy listening.  The trumpets are a nice touch and ManoEri’s vocals aren’t piss poor, but the song just doesn’t go anywhere for me.

15. Oheso no Kuni Kara Konnichiwa

Wow! The Kenshuusei’s song from 2013 makes the cut which is awesome because I think this is the first time we got the song in CD form!  After all the previous tracks, this one really signified more of the current state of the company with the strong EDM sound we’ve been getting.  The Kenshuusei are a pretty BIG group of girls, especially in this release and was happy that 8 of them got solos here: (Rie Kaneko, Ayano Hamaura, Kurumi Yoshihashi, Nanami Tanabe, Rena Ogawa, Fuyuka Kosuga, Kaede Kaga, and Mizuki Murota).  I just fell in love with the song and it’s just incredibly catchy and fun to listen to.

16. Gag 100 Kaibun Aishite Kudasai

Wow, another Berryz song, but at least it’s one of my favorite Berryz songs.  Like “Ookina Ai de Motenashite”, Gag 100 Kaibun Aishite Kudasai is the groups go to cute song.  Being the first single after Maiha’s departure, this song was so bizarre and random that most fans didn’t feel as sad because this song was so goofy but such a damn good song at the same time.  Of course this song makes me think of Momoko and for good reason as there’s a LOT of her in this track (and some from Miyabi and Risako).  This was just a great song and always makes me smile on a down day ^^

17. Yumemiru 15sai

Next up is S/mileage’s major label debut!  At that time, I really was losing interest in the group because their songs didn’t really do anything (until much later down the road).  This song was a pretty epic song for them with the dance feel and the group was slightly letting up on their kiddy atmosphere with something slightly serious.  This was also when I decided I fell in love with Sakitty.  Her voice just aced this song and her high notes were awesome.  Plus there didn’t to be an overdose of Ayacho and Yuukarin which were my least favorite vocals.  Another strong song here!

18. Daite yo! PLEASE GO ON

Good lord is this song epic.  There’s quite a many in Gocchin’s collection that can be called amazing and this song is one of them!  Maki and dance/R&B tracks always seem to catch my attention and she just had a lot of energy in this song from the vocals to the ~Ai wo KUDASAAAAAAI~.  I just always felt myself listening to this song a lot, then again, a lot of “2 Paint It Gold” was great!

19. This is Unmei

Wow, if there was a song that is perfect for H!P performances live, Melon Kinenbi’s 4th A-side, This is Unmei is WAYYYY up there.  This song is just badassery all-around showcasing a much heavier side to the girls being all punk rock and heavily energetic.  The verses being all filled with staccatos and then building into this heavy chorus is just amazing.  I even love that the members shared lines quite nicely giving us a stellar performance…So happy they performed it at the New Year’s Countdown live!

20. Minimoni. Dancing

Ending the compilation out, we get another odd track, this time from a compilation called “Together! -Tanpopo, Petit, Mini, Yuko-” which as you can guess was a collaborative best album.  Minimoni got two new tracks and this was one of them.  However, I wasn’t expecting this track to be 42 seconds long.  I kind of was surprised it just contained some counting and some quick lines here and there.  Though ~Minimoni sexy baby~ is kind of awkward coming from a group like this…odd track to end things.

Tracks Recommended

  • This is Unmei
  • Gag 100 Kaibun Aishite Kudasai
  • SEXY BOY ~Soyokaze ni Yorisotte~
  • Oheso no Kuni Kara Konnichiwa
  • Daite yo! PLEASE GO ON

Chosen by Okite Porsche, Vol. 3 is a rather mixed bag of songs with no real motif on his decisions.  Though half the album had pretty awesome songs, the other half was pretty bad or bland choices.  I’d say the choices in the later half definitely was better than the first half at the least.  Now let’s see what the other compilations has! 6/10

helloprojectzenkyoku4

Track Listing

  1. Semi / Berryz Koubou
  2. Koi wa Hipparidako (from “2007 Sakura Mankai Berryz Koubou Live”) / Momoko Tsugunaga
  3. Pira! Otome no Negai / Petitmoni V
  4. Tokaikko Junjou / °C-ute
  5. Boogie Train ’03 / Miki Fujimoto
  6. Chocolate Damashii / Aya Matsuura
  7. Kimi no Senpou / °C-ute
  8. Ichaicha Summer / GAM
  9. Kuchizuke no Sono Ato / Morning Musume
  10. Akai Nikkichou (Goto version) / Maki Goto
  11. Yuugure / Aya Masuura
  12. AS FOR ONE DAY / Morning Musume
  13. Crazy Kanzen na Otona / °C-ute
  14. Ekizo na DISCO / Maki Goto
  15. Magic of Love / Taiyou to Ciscomoon
  16. Sabori / Berryz Koubou
  17. I WISH / Morning Musume
  18. Neru Ko wa Cute / °C-ute

1. Semi

The 4th compilation album begins with an album song from Berryz Koubou.  Coming from their debut album “1st Chou Berryz”, Semi kicks things off quite nicely.  Despite the fact the vocals are increasingly young and pitchy, it’s otherwise a nice song.  It’s a light track with some nice acoustic vibes and the energy is held back in a nice way.  Though I get this feeling like I want to hear Berryz resing this because it just sounds like the group would sound VERY pleasant.  To me, this song sounds more like something that would come at the end of the album, but whatever works.

2. Koi wa Hipparidako (from “2007 Sakura Mankai Berryz Koubou Live”)

Like “Semi”, this is also a song from their first album, but the biggest difference is that this is a live performance AND a solo one at that from Momoko.  Now, this is a little before I joined in the H!P train, so I’m guessing it’s also when Momoko’s voice was kind of getting hit and miss.  Honestly, I had to listen to the studio version beforehand so I was kind of meh originally.  Momoko actually does a solid job here and didn’t up the cutesy levels to exceeding limits, so overall it wasn’t a bad performance wow!

3. Pira! Otome no Negai

Wow, didn’t I just reviewed this song like last month?…oh wait…April >.>  Anyways a quick reminder, Petitmoni V was the revival of the awesome original group and stuck Nakky, Maimai and ManoEri as the replacements and as strange and non-fitting the group was, Petitmoni V had the energy down at the least and this song shows that.  Now I did spend some time with this song and strangely enough, it doesn’t annoy me AS much as it used to, but I still find myself annoyed at the ~pira-pira-po, pira-pira-pop~ lines and Tsunku’s voice here.  Though I could get behind everything else in this song.  It’s bouncy and the vocals from the trio aren’t as ear-piercing as they usually are.  Congrats Petitmoni V (or Tsunku’s curse) you made me interested.

4. Tokaikko Junjou

Let’s be honest, whenever someone mentions °C-ute, a lot of fans will point this song out and I can agree this song earned its place as one of the biggest songs for the group at the time.  Kicking off with a Maimi dialogue (and closer at that), Tokaikko Junjou was a more serious sounding tune for the 7-nin.  Of course I wasn’t surprised that Airi and Maimi led but even Maimai and Nakky had gotten lines while the remaining 3 just got melody lines >.>.  Still, the beat and groove of the song is epic and the chorus is catchy as hell!  It definitely ranks up their amongst the older °C-ute songs out there ^_^

5. Boogie Train ’03

Moving onto another song that was hugely popular and is a trademark for Mikitty’s solo career, I can see why it has garnered such a strong following because it’s groovy and Miki’s voice just kicked a lot of ass in this song.  I’m so surprised she was just able to give such a vibrant and bright performance.  There’s just so much that could be said about this track and honestly it deserves the compliments, one of the BEST SONGS!  Though I could’ve done without the mid-8 passage (the voice in particular & Tsunku).

6. Chocolate Damashii

I remember that this Ayaya song was actually the final single she’d release under H!P unfortunately, but I’m happy to at least report that it wasn’t a ballad or mid-tempo like her discography had turned into.  I mean it’s still lighter than her earlier releases, but I can at least keep interest all the way.  For as simple as its arrangement is, I kind of found it charming and Ayaya’s vocals are pleasant to listen to.  It’s quite nice, sad it was her final in H!P, but I’m happy it was with this song!

7. Kimi no Senpou

Oh jeeze, getting into a track from °C-ute’s “Shocking 5” album, that was I think my first H!P album review, I remember being incredibly disappointed with it and totally forgot most of the album (except the A-sides and that awesome “Shochuu Omimai Moushiagemasu” remix).  I wasn’t surprised that I had to come back to the album to review this song which was a song sung by only Nakky, Chisato, and Maimai.  I actually am surprised I found myself kind of enjoying it?  I mean vocally, it’s not the best but like “Pira! Otome no Negai”, the vocals aren’t a nuisance as I used to think it was.  It does lack something about it though…there’s no excitement and the vocals together, don’t show emotion perhaps.  Not the worse and I think I do enjoy it more than I did back in 2010.

8. Ichaicha Summer

So, next up is an Ayaya and Mikitty (GAM) song from their only album.  Weird placement as I would think it’d be better before “Kimi no Senpou”.  I actually totally had forgotten what this song sounded like because it was on an album full of winners.  The introduction sounds so 80s, but becomes this tropical feel with the slap bass and bongo drums.  I was also liking that Miki and Aya were singing in a more hushed tone as well.  I also found this song charming but in a more nostalgic way…I don’t know why but thinking of their “Amai Yuuwaku ~1st GAM~”, this song would SO stick out like a sore thumb.  Still a solid track at least!

9. Kuchizuke no Sono Ato

An odd choice coming up, Kuchizuke no Sono Ato hails from Momusu’s 3rd album, “3rd -LOVE Paradise- and it’s kind of like “Kimi no Senpou” with the laidback acoustic feel and yet sounds more intriguing with the lyris and such.  As this is on the heels after Goto’s addition to the group, Kuchizuke no Sono Ato is rather two dimensional, you can’t REALLY tell where the chorus is, but you know there has to be one.  At least all of the members got lines here and the softly-sung vocals were nice if not like I said 2-D, though the ending instrumentation to the fade out was the most interesting thing about the tune.  I’m not sure where I stand with this one.

10. Akai Nikkichou (Goto version)

Coming from her debut album, “Makking GOLD 1″…yeah that title tho!  Anyways, this is Maki’s self-cover of the song that was original done by Akagumi 4 (which had herself, Yuko Nakazawa, Danielle, and Miho Shinoda).  Honestly the worst thing about the original was how weak Maki sounded since she was the lead vocalist.  Coming back to this though, Maki definitely improved in every way!  She has a lot more control and power in her voice and made the right emotions happen.  Also the intro dialogue (originally done by Danielle) is omitted and wasn’t replaced unlike Yuko’s where she redid the monologue in Japanese.  Either way, this is probably my favorite iteration of Akai Nikkichou (though it cuts close with Airi and Ai-chan’s covers).

11. Yuugure

Wow! A B-side now?  Yup we get into Yuugure which is from Aya Matsuura’s 2nd single “Tropica~l Koishite~ru” and the style was a total 180 to the A-side in which this song was a lot lighter and softer sounding…almost kind of like how Chinatsu Miyoshi’s style would’ve sounded like on Ayaya.  For the most part, it’s rather smooth sailing for the entire track and Ayaya’s voice is nice, though the effect it has sounds weird to me.  Double layering maybe?  Either way, I loved the chorus the most here…that call and response and echo just sounds dreamy.  What a surprisingly nice track!

12. AS FOR ONE DAY

Ah, I remember that this was Kei Yasuda’s final single and right around the time the 6th Generation had joined but they had to sit it out (I’m sure to let Kei graduate without any shadowing.  This is a VERY underrated song in Morning Musume because it just had the prettiest sound and PV at the time.  Opening with an Aibon monologue, AS FOR ONE DAY is just a song that just amplifies the genius Tsunku had at the time because I was in love with this when I backtracked through their discography.  I LOVE this song and for all the undertones and pretty flute solos, it’s one of the best the group has ever done in my honest opinion

13. Crazy Kanzen na Otona

Wow, going more recent to 2013’s °C-ute A-side, Crazy Kanzen na Otona.  I mean it still is a pretty epic song, why it’s on this compilation kind of weirds me out as it seems to be the only heavy dance track here.  I LOVE the arrangement of course because I’m just always into Tsunku’s recent EDM craze.  Anyways, Airi…my god you rocked this song fully and didn’t she look AMAZING in the PV?  Yeah, even the other members struck a sexy pose and it was just good fun, enough to boost their popularity of course!  It’s another favorite of mine on this album, but it sure does look weird amongst the *soft* songs here…

14. Ekizo na DISCO

Well, I suppose this counts as a dance track too right?  This song has always seem to bothered me especially with the presentation.  The creepy male vocals and Maki’s OVERLY whispery vocals.  It sounds so bloody awkward to listen to that I just couldn’t take this song seriously.  I kind of wonder why Koide chose this song to be on the album…it’s just a VERY bad song and creepy as hell to listen to….icky!

15. Magic of Love

Cleaning my mouth out from that nasty taste, we get our Taiyou & Ciscomoon track (which is the group’s 5th single) and this song really surprised me with the happy tone and almost perfect feel to close a performance out with.  It just seemed perfect for the quartet to just give a lively feel.  Of course I’m always impressed by them since their vocals are just near perfect (RuRu’s though OMG ^_^).  Even today it’s enjoyed, *is reminded of Meimi’s adaptation of RuRu’s rising high note* lord is that girl talented!.  Either way, I adore this song a lot and definitely stands the test of time too…..btw…BAZINGA! LOL and that ending….that guy was a LIL overhyped and the final fanfare seemed so out of place…though how else could you end it?  A fade out? HELL NO 😄

16. Sabori

Back to some more Berryz, Dai 2 Seichouki is actually an album I haven’t gotten to listen to fully quite yet besides the A-sides (and the B-sides from said singles) though it does have a lot of BIG songs from them too.  To me from the start I thought it was a Winter song because of the intro arrangement, but it’s kind of like “Semi” but with a beat and less acoustics.  I don’t know why but I really like the sound of this song, sounds so sentimental and ironically I liked Captain and Momochi’s vocals the most here since Miyabi was stressing her voice and Risako was going through her scratchy voice phase.  Overall quite nice, makes me want to listen to the album now!

17. I WISH

Ah! Morning Musume’s 9th single!  I WISH is to many a fan favorite because it was such a sentimental song and just has that happy feel and just makes you wanna hug someone.  As this was the single after Sayaka’s graduation, I WISH brought the newly appointed 4th Generation and for most fans was their first time hearing everyone.  Well, to be frank it was a Gocchin/4th Gen show (with one solo from Marippe).  The rest of the members were straight into the back and it shocked me to be honest.  Still, this is a pretty big song and another I tend to come back to every so often (yeah and let’s not talk about the updated version) that’s for a future review to be honest.

18. Neru Ko wa Cute

The final song is actually the first time this has been recorded for an album of sorts.  If you don’t know Neru Ko wa Cute is from a 2007 stageplay of theirs, “Gekidan Gekiharo Dai 2 Kai Kouen “Neru Ko wa °C-ute””.  Now I personally have not watched stageplays before 2011 so this came as a total surprise that Koide would go out of his way to include such an outside song.  It kind of sounds like a game show mixed with Mario Kart 64 XD.  Vocally, this is kind of back then when they weren’t the strongest so they kind of just hung back.  Add on they’re singing in unison, so it really doesn’t stick out to me.  Interesting inclusion, but not an exciting song.

Tracks Recommended

  1. AS FOR ONE DAY
  2. Akai Nikkichou (Goto version)
  3. Crazy Kanzen na Otona
  4. Boogie Train ’03
  5. Sabori

Vol. 4 chosen by Yusuke Koide, I kind of wasn’t surprised that majority of his selection was light and relaxing, even though there were some surprises (Crazy Kanzen na Otona pops up in my mind first).  I would say this turned out a lot better than I thought it would have since I hadn’t heard some of these tracks until now.  Compared to the 3rd, I felt less annoyed (though Ekizo na DISCO was a poor choice all-around).  Good choice! 7/10

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REVIEW: Hello! Project no Zenkyoku Kara Atsumechaimashita! Vol. 1 & 2

helloprojectzenkyoku

Track Listing

  1. Egao YES Nude (ALBUM MIX) / Morning Musume
  2. Kimagure / Maki Goto
  3. Sentimental Minamimuki / Mari Yaguchi (Tanpopo)
  4. Toshoshitsu Taiki / Berryz Koubou
  5. Aisaretai Aisaretai / Ongaku Gatas
  6. Popcorn Love! / Morning Musume
  7. Bye Bye Bye! / °C-ute
  8. Aki Urara / Morning Musume
  9. Himitsu no U・ta・hi・me / Berryz Koubou
  10. PARTY TIME / Guardians 4
  11. Nebou Desu. Date na no ni… / Morning Musume
  12. Debut! ~Koisuru Kado ni wa Fukukitaru~ / Ice Creamusume
  13. Uchuu de La ta ta / Taiyou to Ciscomoon
  14. Let’s Do Daihakken! / Miki Fujimoto
  15. Kokuhaku Kinenbi / Melon Kinenbi
  16. Romance no Tochuu / Juice=Juice
  17. The Matenrou Show (TYPE 0) / Morning Musume

1. Egao YES Nude (ALBUM MIX)

Volume 1 opens up with a rather odd choice for Momusu’s A-side, Egao YES Nude but it does leave the album to sound really sassy and funky which is true for over half the album.  I’m also surprised they went with the ALBUM MIX but super elated they did because it sounds more complete and funky when compared to the single mix.  About the song, we all know this was Aika’s debut and I love how much she shined around the song having two big lines to herself.  It’s a pretty underappreciated song, but I thought it opened this disc very well!

2. Kimagure

I was kind of more surprised with Munewaki’s choice of songs that weren’t leading songs and the first is this B-side from Gocchin’s 4th single, “Yaruki! IT’S EASY”.  It definitely continues to carry that funky disco sound, but fuses with her more cute side that she was presenting back then.  I do think its A-side still overshadows the song, but Kimagure wasn’t a terrible coupling…still an out there choice.

3. Sentimental Minamimuki

I was surprised they put Tanpopo on the cover but the song chosen is actually a Marippe solo.  I’ve said it before, but I loved the first generation of Tanpopo a lot and the more 90’s sound they had really filled up that space when Morning Musume were making that transition after “LOVE Machine”.  It’s a bright song and Mari’s light vocals really sounded pretty if not a little squeaky.  Though that little mid-section was strange.  Yeah, I really do like the song, another gem from Tanpopo ❤

4. Toshoshitsu Taiki

Another B-side makes the cut, but this time from Berryz Koubou’s single, “Jiriri Kiteru”.  This tune sounds a bit more R&B-ish and this was when Berryz still had those pre-puberty voices that made them sound a bit strange at times.  I can’t say this song really stuck on me like many other songs on the album.  It lacks that certain oomph and kind of ranks for me as one of the worst Berryz’ B-sides they had.

5. Aisaretai Aisaretai

Moving onto the B-side from Ongaku Gatas’ 3rd single, “Come Together” it was a step up from that song because the latter was really only sung by the non-Eggs.  This time, it was led mostly by Yossie, Sawachan, Charmy, and Sengoku.  This funky song really felt like the group was finally gelling together on a song, sad that it would be the last appearance of Yuri but I think she shined the most with this one.  Now this should’ve been the A-side and on this album it settled in just fine!  Great song!

6. Popcorn Love!

Another odd addition is the B-side from Momusu’s “Mr. Moonlight ~Ai no Big Band~”.  Popcorn Love! is one of the more forgettable songs in the group’s discography but this song was on the same single that the 5th Generation (Ai-chan, Gaki, Mako, and Konkon) debuted.  The song itself is nice because everyone in the group gets a solo line (did you guys hear Konkon’s line, that was surprisingly not Konkon-like…almost like she had a strong voice there).  The song suits this album as well given a poppy disco sound.  Though overall, the song still doesn’t leave much on me.

7. Bye Bye Bye!

Of all the °C-ute songs out there, I was also surprised Munewaki chose an A-side.  Bye Bye Bye! comes off the reins of Kanna leaving so the group dynamic was thrown for a slight loop.  Though it seems they did manage to backlog and make Airi, Maimi, and Maimai leads with the other 3 members kind of fighting for whatever was left, Nakky having a couple lines, Chisato only got 2, and Umechan got ONE solo line.  Though with those flaws, it’s one of my favorite songs from the group because it’s all kinds of funky and the group has a lot of energy within the song…though people were still fangasming over “FOREVER LOVE” to really take notice til later.

8. Aki Urara

Another Momusu B-side?  This time it was one of the two B-sides from “Nanchatte Renai”.  Aki Urara was another obvious choice and a pretty nifty one as it reminds me of early H!P music.  The song was mostly Ai-chan, Reina, Gaki, and Kame but it was a really good song to show their more sultry vocals and was more surprised with the lack of the other 5 members (they were regulated as background vocals).  It’s a great song and I was happy that it was chosen (over some of the other songs that were picked here).

9. Himitsu no U・ta・hi・me

Interesting they chose to put a Berryz B-side before Maiha left (actually this is the B-side from her last single appearance, “21-ji Made no Cinderella”).  The song is a bit more cutesy than previous tracks and once again we’re in that area where the girls are going through voice changes so they kind of again sound odd.  Though it’s made worse when the songs sounds very mechanical and the girls have to hit these really HIGH notes (they probably can’t even do this song without the song going down an octave or two.  Another song I could easily live without, but I like that Maiha got a lot of attention.

10. PARTY TIME

A group that I will eventually give a profile to, we get PARTY TIME which was the group’s 2nd A-side.  As the group consists of Aika, Risako, Nakky, and Yurina, this song was their best tune.  Though I find the addition to this album a tad strange as it really isn’t a funky, discotheque kind of tune.  The song does have a strong beat and I love hearing Aika and Risako the most but everyone did pretty well.  Maybe a song better suited for the 2nd volume, but it’s so good that it was better off not being there!

11. Nebou Desu. Date na no ni…

Another Momusu B-side, this one from “Namida ga Tomaranai Houkago”.  I hate to say it but it seemed like Tsunku took a page from “Himitsu no U・ta・hi・me” in where the song is pretty mechanical (ESPECIALLY THE CHORUS).  All the ladies did get a solo line at the least, but the song sounds like a worse version of the aforementioned song and “Toshoshitsu Taiki”.  It’s definitely the worst of this album.

12. Debut! ~Koisuru Kado ni wa Fukukitaru~

Does anyone remember Ice Creamusume?  Yeah, if you do then props for being around that time.  If you don’t well they were a shortlived Taiwanese H!P group that came together when Tsunku had a bit of Asian fever.  Another song that doesn’t fit the mold of most of the direction this album has, Debut! is kind of generic to me.  Like Tsunku really didn’t give two shits about the group and gave them the most basic work he could muster and sent them off with it (amongst various Momusu songs to cover in JPN and Mandarin).  I also found it odd that of the 6 members, Shenshen got the only solo (which was the quiet part before the final chorus).  The song just didn’t do anything for me and ended up forgetful

13. Uchuu de La ta ta

Getting back to some funky stuff it was obvious that Taiyou to Ciscomoon were going to be represented in some fashion (though they should’ve had more songs on here haha).  The tune begins with spoken dialogue from RuRu in Chinese before the song moves in to its groovy arrangement.  Inaba does take the lead role for majority of the song with some leads from RuRu and Miho with Miwa kind of just acting as the background high voice.  It’s one of my many favorite tunes from the group so that should tell ya guys something!

14. Let’s Do Daihakken

Moving onto Mikitty’s B-side from her debut single, “Aenai Nagai Nichiyoubi”, Let’s Do Daihakken! gave us more of a taste of Miki’s powerful vocals but given a happy-go-lucky tune to go along with it!  The tune isn’t anything too special amongst the other songs she’s released but I love the atmosphere and she blew down the doors with her voice.

15. Kokuhaku Kinenbi

I never really understood of all the Melon songs, they chose the group’s second A-side to be added here.  I take that back…the song was a good enough choice for Munewaki, but this song definitely doesn’t show off the group’s skills very well.  It kind of sounds like a tune meant for Taiyou to Ciscomoon actually and hearing Melon’s tackle it was a risky move.  Not my favorite song, actually it might be one of least favorite Melonki A-sides.

16. Romance no Tochuu

That’s a bit of a time warp going from Melons to H!P’s newest group’s major label debut, Romance no Tochuu.  I will be straight up, I LOVE this song and I’m happy it was included despite being such a new song (and plus it’s on Petit Best 14).  The tune is led by Karin, Sayubee, and Kanatomo and I’m loving this so much because their vocals have such strong layers and well Tomoko is a BAWSS!  It’s a really awesome disco-funk track and ranks up there as one of the best major debuts in H!P’s history!

17. The Matenrou Show (TYPE 0)

Ending the 1st volume, we get the secondary A-side from Momusu’s 50th single.  Though it’s a different version which included Gaki and Aika (though we don’t hear much of the latter if at all?).  To be honest, it felt like a song that was meant for Gaki, Ai-chan, Reina, Sayu, Riho, and Aika.  Though I think the rest of the group still sings the group lines.  That being said with the sound of the song, I was curious why songs like “Shining Power”, “Busu ni Naranai Tetsugaku”, and “Waratte! YOU” were absent.  Back to the song at hand, The Matenrou Show (TYPE 0) is so much better than the single version with Gaki being the main reason why it was amazing because the original was just Reina and Riho taking the solos and everyone else in the back.  There’s better songs, but this is an ok end to the album.

Tracks Recommended

  • Romance no Tochuu
  • Bye Bye Bye!
  • Aisaretai Aisaretai
  • PARTY TIME
  • Uchuu de La ta ta

The first volume was chosen by NakaG and TOWER RECORD’s president Munewaki Ikou and it seemed like with them, they had a focus on what songs were to be chosen.  Most of the album had a similar theme of being a disco/funk song which I loved and included some great tracks.  Though flipside is they included some cuter songs and those choices were mostly meh to me.  It’s definitely the preferred volume but I will tell you why later down this post.  7/10

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Track Listing

  1. The☆Peace! (H&A Death Tracks) / HANGRY&ANGRY-f
  2. Koi no Twist & Waracchai na Town / Maki Goto, Tomoyuki Kouno, Norihisa Hiranuma, Yuuji, SHU-110
  3. Do Re Mi Fa Doushite? / Erina Mano
  4. Rikaishite>Onna no Ko / Rika Ishikawa
  5. I&YOU&I&YOU&I / Tanpopo
  6. Asu wa Date na no ni, Ima Sugu Koe ga Kikitai / S/mileage
  7. Maji Natsu Sugiru / Berryz Koubou
  8. Watashi no Tamago / Shugo Chara Egg!
  9. Shiroi TOKYO / ZYX
  10. Nusunda Heart wa Koko Desu yo? / Reina Tanaka (Chorus: Yui Ogura with Purupuruiyaan (Arisa Noto & Sachika Misawa)
  11. Idolulu / Lilpri
  12. Tan Tan Taan! / MilkyWay
  13. Robokiss / W
  14. Lalala no Pipipi / Sayumi Michishige (Morning Musume)
  15. Eco no Waltz / Ecohams
  16. GIVE ME UP / Melon Kinenbi
  17. Koisuru Niwatori / THE Possible
  18. Hitoribocchi no Heya / Mari Yaguchi
  19. Kimagure Zetsubou Arigatou / Riho Sayashi (Chorus: Morning Musume)

1. The☆Peace! (H&A Death Tracks)

Once upon a time, HANGRY & ANGRY were indeed H!P and even though they kind of slid off the radar in recent times, there was a lot of wonder what Yossie and Charmy would pull under this duo setting.  Turns out the duo would release hard rock songs and well it stuck to the fans of both ladies it seems.  Coming from their album, “Sadistic Dance”, we get a cover of one of Morning Musume’s bigger hits and it’s a 180 from the original.  Yossie and Rika do sound like they had some vocal tricks thrown in and some of the original calls are still there.  For a death metal cover, this isn’t terrible, but very 180 for a sound (and for this album even more apparantly so).  The only hardcore song on this album!

2. Koi no Twist & Waracchai na Town

This disc as you may see has a lot more wtf-choices going on from some really underappreciated (?) albums.  The first comes from Gocchin whose song comes from her solo Musical, “Ken & Mary no Merikenko on Stage!”.  I kind of was surprised because she had a single that was from said musical but this song wasn’t one of them.  Featuring 4 other guest artists (one of them sings, but the others might be the musicians?).  For a song that’s 1:30 long, I was surprised with this choice.  Though the song is catchy as hell…honestly the chorus sounds so pleasant and adding this almost sound that’s similar to The Beatles, it worked so well!  Short but sweet <3.

3. Do Re Mi Fa Doushite?

Moving on, we go into Do Re Mi Fa Doushite? which was an album song from ManoEri’s sophomore album, “MORE FRIENDS”.  Another thing that goes on with this disc is that even the artists get some random ass choices.  ManoEri’s tune is something I’ve reviewed in the past and I kind of thought the song was OK if not a tad bland and the chorus is a bit jerky.  It does have a certain anime-ish sound (something cutesy almost).  The song wasn’t all that, but they could’ve picked much worse.

4. Rikaishite>Onna no Ko

This was something random!  If you may recall, during the “Renai Revolution 21” days, Morning Musume released a set for their fanclub members which featured 10 discs with 20 songs, half were message left by each member while the other 10 were solo songs from the 10 members at the time.  On here, Yoshida I guess chose to include Rika’s solo song from that release!  It definitely has the same vein as the previous track which doesn’t surprise but I kind of didn’t think much because Rika’s voice isn’t the best here.  I kind of zoned this tune out, but it definitely suits the gal as she was cute as a button.

5. I&YOU&I&YOU&I

Next is Tanpopo’s turn (more specifically, the 2nd Generation of Tanpopo).  This song came from their first best album, “All of Tanpopo” as a new song.  For being in that period of a change of genres for Tanpopo, I actually never heard the song before now.  This tune sounds kind of like an 80’s tune but cutesy.  I’m kind of undecided about this song because it’s catchy (lot like their other songs) but it seemed also a bit boring and generic at other points.  Plus saying that title gets annoying after a while.

6. Asu wa Date na no ni, Ima Sugu Koe ga Kikitai

It seems this is where the disc switches from the more natural sounding songs to super cutesy stuff.  Asu wa Date na no ni…was the 2nd indies single coming from S/mileage (which was Saki, Yuuka, Kanon, and Ayaka at that time).  When I first reviewed this, I couldn’t deal with the high-pitched voices from all of the ladies.  Today, only Yuukarin and Ayacho really kind of make me twitch with their voices.  I love the song though and it has such a bouncy and bright feel to it, but sometimes those two girls can really sound off-pitch.  It’s a pretty sweet song and one of the songs that I normally tie S/mileage with.

7. Maji Natsu Sugiru

One of the songs from Berryz’ 2nd mini-album, “3 Natsu Natsu Mini Berryz”, we get another odd choice in Maji Natsu Sugiru.  For a summer song, this wasn’t all that bad and they had the mini full of them (some were covers though).  Like I said above from the other album, this is another one of those songs where the girls were slowly getting into their current voices so some of them (Risako mostly) sound a bit off her mark in the song.  Most of the leads belonged to Miyabi, Risako, and Momoko which wasn’t surprising but eh.  Good song overall though but probably would sound way better today.

8. Watashi no Tamago

Not to be confused with SCE!’s debut single, “Minna no Tamago”, this was the group’s technical 3rd A-side (but it was a secondary to Guardians 4’s “PARTY TIME”).  Shugo Chara Egg! had two generations and this was sort of the 2nd one comprising of original member Akari Saho and new members (at that time) Mizuki Fukumura and Irori Maeda (their 4th member would come in shortly after this release).  I have to say, this is another song I haven’t listened to before so I was curious because I knew what Fukuchan sounded like and she sounded good here (tone felt a little dead, but clearly she got better in time).  Saho sounded the weakest oddly enough but once again once she joined UUG, she got better.  Irorin though sounded like the second coming of Yuukarin lol but better.  The tune is a typical anime-cute-song which is normal since SCE! were created just for an anime.  Not their best song but it’s passable and oddly they harmonized really nicely through the chorus.  Interesting…

9. Shiroi TOKYO

Ahhh, the wintry ZYX A-side comes next and Shiroi TOKYO was a pretty fun to listen to (especially during the holidays).  I love the song and it’s just great to hear some of the girls that usually don’t get that time to shine like Umechan and Captain (but they were a lot younger).  Of course Marippe and Megumi sounded great though and of course there’s Maimi and Momoko who were more and less there for me lol.  Fun song overall!

10. Nusunda Heart wa Koko Desu yo?

Man, Yoshida is just getting me to listen to songs that I have never taken the time to listen to/not listened to yet.  I know this song is found on “Petit Best 11” but I haven’t reviewed that yet, so another spoiled track.  As the song used in Kaitou Reinya, I wasn’t expecting a song like THIS from Reina!  Including Yui Ogura (currently in YuiKaori), Arisa Noto (currently in StylipS, former Egg as well) and Sachika Misawa (another Happy! Style gal), I wasn’t sure what to expect.  The song is super cute of course but I was focused on trying to stomach Reina singing in such a cute voice (because everyone knows she isn’t one for this kind of thing).  I can’t seem to form an opinion, it just seems SO OUTSIDE of Reina’s box that it’s not clicking in my mind haha.  The other 3 act as these overly cutesy voices that come in with their quips (though Nocchi does sing some parts under Reina).  Oddball song!!!

11. Idolulu

Next song up is from Lilpri (which is 4-nin S/mileage without Saki and more quirky anime).  As it was the trio’s 2nd A-side (and consequently final single), Idolulu wasn’t as fascinating as their debut to be honest.  It’s kind of like “Watashi no Tamago” but I didn’t like it as much as it felt like something that’s been done before and better by another group (not in H!P).  It’s just a tad blah-tastic but some people might enjoy it.

12. Tan Tan Taan!

I remember that MilkyWay was the 1st H!P group I actually started reviewing which definitely meant something for me at the time and was sad they dissolved when Kirarin ended.  Being a trio of Koharu Kusumi (who was still under her solo moniker) and two Eggs, Sayaka Kitahara and Yuu Kikkawa (who voiced characters that mirrored them in the anime), MilkyWay had a good start with “Anataboshi” and released their 2nd single (which was also their last), Tan Tan Taan!.  It’s so sugary cute, but there was something that caught my interest even though I have the tendency to write off Koharu’s Kirarin stuff.  I will say, after I initially reviewed it…Koharu sounds better than she’s normally with her other Kirarin songs and Kikka sounded like a gem in the group.  Saaya though kind of crapped out here, luckily she got better after she went solo.  Probably my favorite Kirarin song next to “Balalaika”.

13. Robokiss

I was so happy to see a W song appear (since the whole Aibon scandal kind of messed things up).  Robokiss was never a song I fully enjoyed so my excitement kind of waned off lol.  Still, the song isn’t bad and I can see why a LOT of people love the song, but I personally enjoyed the Jisedai remix more.  Not a bad choice but if Yoshida was going for cute W songs…there was WAY better choices.

14. Lalala no Pipipi

Minus the final track, Lalala no Pipipi is the most recent song that’s on this disc.  As the Sayu solo from Morning Musume’s “13 Colorful Character”, it’s a pretty odd song choice here because it’s a whole different side of cute…y’know adding electro and auto-tune to the mix.  Honestly they could’ve went with one of the Sayu / Fukuchan songs because Lalala no Pipipi never really jumped for me.  I’m not sure what else to really say lol.

15. Eco no Waltz

Another abstract song, we get Eco no Waltz which is from Ecohams (which is basically EcoMoni (Sayu and Rika)).  Like the title alludes, it definitely is a waltz and kind of slower than ones I listen to.  Oddly enough, I hear Sayu more than Rika here and I don’t know what to say.  The song sounds like it’s drunk walking through (you know that typically goes with waltz anyways).  It could’ve been done a little faster and for being sung by 2 of the more weaker Momusu girls…it just didn’t grow on me…at least it’s better than their other song >.>.

16. GIVE ME UP

Ahhh Melon Kinenbi appears with a cover of that Michael Fortunati song, GIVE ME UP.  Like I said above with “Kokuhaku Kinenbi”, I know the quartet more for their edgier and sultrier songs and GIVE ME UP was another odd choice from Yoshida because this was the only new track from their 2nd best album, “MEGA MELON”.  There’s just not enough oomph with this song and it seriously flies over my head.  If you want to listen to a good cover of this song, listen to W’s take!

17. Koisuru Niwatori

I found it amusing that Yoshida included a song from THE Possible but of course something from H!P.  Interesting that this is another cover and from their first mini-album, “1 Be Possible”.  Being a Hiroko Taniyama cover, I kind of was expecting cute (considering how long ago THE Possible were in H!P).  The song is cute enough and all the girls got solos (though Akkyan and Hashimon both got a line more than the other 4).  The other thing is that the hook of the song is kind of lame but it’s whatever xD.

18. Hitoribocchi no Heya

Now for another strange addition we get a solo track from Marippe!  This song came from “FS4: FOLK SONGS 4” which is you’re into H!P lore, this was part of that whole set of releases of covering popular (and not-so-popular classics).  Granted, I haven’t delved into that side of Hello! Project yet, but this might actually get me to find them all.  Back to the song, it kind of has a wintry feel (like almost Charlie Brown-esque).  Mari when compared to her voice in “Sentimental Minamimuki” sounds a lot more stable and more confident which is really nice!  I liked this song and definitely felt like good coffee music ^^.

19. Kimagure Zetsubou Arigatou

The final song is actually might not be new (this is from the Stacy’s Shoujo Saisatsu Kageki musical that happened not long ago) though it’s new in the sense that it’s a studio recording and not a live version.  It’s a haunting ballad and I was surprised Riho had it in her to give such a strong performance (with all the flak she’s gotten as a singer, she sounds really pristine here).  Of course the other Morning Musume (sans Sayu I think) join her for the chorus which is nice, then comes the middle dialogue which is so eh lol.  It comes down to the ending and then there’s these sudden shots being fired…scared the shit outta me!  Odd song but Riho did a good job with a ballad (should do more of these Tsunku!).

Tracks Recommended

  • Tan Tan Taan!
  • Hitoribocchi no Heya
  • Koi no Twist & Waracchai na Town
  • Asu wa Date na no ni, Ima Sugu Koe ga Kikitai
  • Kimagure Zetsubou Arigatou

The other album, chosen by celebrity interviewer, Yoshida Gou was a lot more out of the box when choosing songs.  I mean he went deep into their vault like Rika and Mari’s solos and Riho’s song as well.  You can also tell he really enjoyed the more anime-esque sounding songs and those were a bit meh of choices as well.  I can’t say I was too enthusiastic about this disc, but I guess it did show a more broader look of H!P’s different ideas. 5/10.

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