Iroppoi Twilight Game

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

H!P Profiles: SATOYAMA pt. 3

On today’s post, we’ll talk about the 3rd wave of SATOYAMA (surprise like the previous one, this one also didn’t get too much hype around it besides that a lot of this was interesting because most of the units in this batch had new members that haven’t had a a chance to tackle it.  Shall we take a look?

Sato no Akari – Aa, Subarashiki Hibi yo

satonoakari

L to R: Masaki Sato, Rina Katsuta, Akari Uemura

The first up, we have Sato no Akari (which combines their names into it).  While I don’t think any of them are the focus in their groups (especially in the case for Rinapuu & Aarii as they don’t have many lines in comparison of the other girls in their respective groups).  Their song, Aa, Subarashiki Hibi yo is a cutesy poppy song which I mean is OK, but nothing terribly memorable to me!

Personally, I have not really watched the full PVs of any of the 3 songs so this is a new experience.  I mean for what it’s worth the PV is cute to watch but damn is it a bit lifeliss otherwise beyond the solos shots of the trio.  I mean they are having tea together which is cute, but that’s about it…

Triplet – Dream Last Train

triplet

L to R: Chisato Okai, Haruka Kudo, Sayuki Takagi

Next up is a grouping that I was really excited to hear from!  I mean besides the fact they have the more scruffier vocals within H!P, I was hoping they’d get a pretty cool track and to be honest, is the best one of the three groups.  Dream Last Train (excuse the Engrish-y title) is a pop/rock hybrid and features Duu quite a bit.

I actually felt that there was more use with the camera than in Sato no Akari’s track that’s for sure.  Most of the time it’s circling around the trio and short scenes of them running.  I mean it’s a good song don’t get me wrong, but these PVs have so far been really boring to watch (at least there’s a lot of my two favorite members!

ODATOMO – Kodachi wo Nukeru Kaze no You ni

odatomo

L to R: Tomoko Kanazawa, Sakura Oda

Figures they’d take the two strongest vocalists and pair them together for this unit (a combination of Tomoko and Oda XD).  I mean it was a match made to happen that’s for sure.  Not surprised that they were given a ballad though either since they were suited for that setting.  It’s a nicely sung song and definitely knew it was going to be a good track for them.

Besides the blowing sand effects, this PV is just as standard as the other two tracks if not made much worse because there’s not much else to the PV except for the duo singing.  Very plain!

Ranking by me: Dream Last Train >>>>>>> Kodachi wo Nukeru Kaze no You ni >>>>>>> Aa, Subarashiki Hibi yo

Overall: When it comes to the 3rd wave of SATOYAMA, I felt this set was tarnished by such plain PVs when the other waves had nice settings or something that caught my attention.  I feel as if H!P lost interest fully in this set despite releasing nice songs.  Plus the groups had nice combinations within (though Masaki being utilized for the third time is overkill.  It’s definitely not my favorite groups, but it was nice to hear something (just wondering if 2015 is going to continue this or not).

Leave a comment »

H!P Profiles: SATOUMI

On today’s post, we’ll be talking about something else that happened in 2013 that focused on keeping environmental awareness a thing with the SATOUMI units (which unlike their SATOYAMA sisters, focused more on keeping the oceans clean).  That being said, it was inevitable that we were going to get musical units from this happening and we ended up with Dia Lady, Mellowquad, and HI-FIN.

Initially after coming off the 2nd wave of SATOYAMA, I felt like H!P wasn’t into it, but how wrong was I…Shall we start?

Dia Lady – Lady Mermaid

Dia_Lady

L to R: Airi Suzuki, Risako Sugaya

Great to see Airi and Risako together as a duo unit considering they weren’t doing anything for the SATO series yet.  Both of them have strong voices and you could easily tell them apart.  A lot of fans really took to this group because of their places in their respective groups, even I was curious about it all.

Now, the PV is something else.  Considering that SATOUMI was about the sea, I wonder how much of the PVs would be about saving the seas.  Now, lyrically it makes the most sense because it’s about love and tying those thoughts to the sea.  Though I can’t help but think of why, the setting was inside a diner then it feels like it’s a dual between Airi, Risako, and a guy…talk about competition!  Lady Mermaid though was a great song and I was surprised at how well Airi and Risako sung together.

Mellowquad – Eiya-sa! Brother

Mellowquad

L to R: Chinami Tokunaga, Chisato Okai, Miyabi Natsuyaki, Maimi Yajima

If there was a poster group for the movement here, Mellowquad would definitely have the other groups beaten.  I mean look at them!  They’re in matsuri outfits with such vibrant fish posters.  Now I’ll say that it is the 2nd time Chinami, Miyabi, and Maimi were involved in a SATO____ unit though the first for Chisato.  Their tune, Eiya-sa! Brother was just as exciting being a matsuri-esque kind of tune.

Even the PV is pretty much things you would do at a matsuri from eating to playing games.  Though I do lulz at the mascots making an appearance here.  It’s a funky song and lyrically can be taken the wrong way real quickly, but it’s fun.  The dance is a little weird for me but it is from the H!P Kids so they can make it their own.

HI-FIN – Kaigan Seisou Danshi

HI-FIN

L to R: Mai Hagiwara, Ayumi Ishida, Kanon Fukuda, Erina Ikuta, Saki Nakajima

The last group announced is the one that caught my attention. When the groups were first announced this one in particular was called Plumeria, though a few weeks before its release, they changed it to HI-FIN (the first letter of their last names are all used).  I feel like with HI-FIN they were the beach-friendly group because of all the pastel colors and lighter side to their music as well.  Everyone but Maimai and Nyon were involved in SATOYAMA previous so it was nice to see them back. Their track, Kaigan Seisou Danshi is a lot fluffier sounding and just is happy.

So the PV for Kaigan Seisou Danshi is also a lot lighter and cute (and seemed like a lot of the budget was used here).  It’s still a bunch of solo shots, but each member got a lot of facetime as well.  Even the spoken dialogue sections of the song is just adorable.  Now if there was a PV that solidified the meaning of the movement, it would be this one (whereas Mellowquad’s tune is more of the less serious side).  I know this song is about crushing on a beach cleaner (what?) but still.

Ranking by me: Lady Mermaid >>>>> Kaigan Seisou Danshi >>>>> Eiya-sa! Brother

OVERALL: When SATOUMI was announced a lot of people were groaning over that the 2nd wave wasn’t quite a successful at gaining fans (or interest).  I will say these 3 units actually had decent songs and were grouped together nicely.  I do wonder why we haven’t had a 2nd wave (though SATOYAMA had 3 waves).  Overall not bad this time around!

Leave a comment »

H!P Profiles: SATOYAMA pt. 2

Today, we’ll be continuing our sort-of sub-units for the environmental awareness show.  Though it’s not too much since the only new thing was a new group in the form of Jurin, but I will squeeze in the return of Peaberry and GREEN FIELDS as well!

So we begin with the surprising return of Peaberry and GREEN FIELDS, there was no real reason for either to have returned without Harvest and DIY it just kind of happened (with not a lot of fanfare from the fans either) to the point where GREEN FIELDS’ didn’t even get a PV for their song but more on that lol.

Peaberry – Cabbage Hakusho ~Haru-hen~

peaberry

L to R: Ayaka Wada, Kayoko Hosokawa, Riho Sayashi

A lot people scoffed at Peaberry since they kind of had the two members that really split the fandom through the middle.  Though to the groans of many, they returned and they’re putting out a new single (a major label one at that) and sadly it’s just a new version of their indies song, Cabbage Hakusho.  In an odd twist, they also added the former Prime Minister’s wife, Kayoko Hosokawa to the song with her short incerpt of the classic song, “Furusato” (not the Momusu song mind you).  Personally, the song didn’t sound too different, but the addition of Furusato was a bit too randomly placed in the song…(before the second verse?).

When we had the original PV to stare at, there really wasn’t much to it beyond a lot of Ayacho and Riho outside standing and walking around.  Luckily, the new version is a bit more engaging, especially with Kayoko acting as their grandmother in the PV.  I mean the duo are still just kind of standing around when they aren’t making food with granny Kayoko and all, but it’s still a more engaging video than the original.

B-side: At least the single did come with a new song in the form of Niji no Seseragi which is more or less a chorale song.  At first I couldn’t really hear Sayashi and Wada over the chorale voices, but over time they start to pop out.  Overall, it’s an OK song but not seriously memorable.

GREEN FIELDS – Tokainaka no Kare

greenfields

L to R: Saki Shimizu, Yuka Miyazaki, Aika Mitsui

Yeah, what I mentioned earlier, I felt like the return of Peaberry and GREEN FIELDS was mostly left silent because they was little to no interest in seeing either of them return.  It was so bad that GREEN FIELDS didn’t even get a PV for their major label debut.  Honestly, I couldn’t give a reason why because none of them were too busy at the time (maybe Yuka since she was just debuting in Juice=Juice).  It still is today the only song that didn’t get a PV.

The song itself is really catchy and upbeat and the 3 ladies sound like they’re having fun.  Add some interesting instruments like horns, kazoo and etc. and I honestly preferred this song more than the other two SATOYAMA releases in 2013.

B-side: What? GREEN FIELDS got an original B-side as well?  Yup, they got the kind of folksy B-side, “Haru wa Kuru” and it’s slower than the leading track, but still sounded interesting and refreshing enough to stand out in the year.

Jurin – Hotaru Matsuri no Hi

jurin

L to R: Masaki Sato, Karin Miyamoto

Jurin didn’t form together until July of 2013 (a while after Peaberry and GREEN FIELDS released their singles), but it was the only new SATOYAMA unit of 2013 before we ended up with a new SATO trio which will be in a couple posts.  Like the other two, I didn’t feel like there was a lot of fanfare with these two though it is the first time we see Karin a group (due to her being in Juice=Juice).  They were given the song Hotaru Matsuri no Hi which was a ballad which also kind of threw up red flags similarly to Peaberry’s song.

Funny I say that because the PV is a lot like the original Cabbage Hakusho PV where the duo are just simply standing around in a meadow.  It really doesn’t pick up until near the end where the duo is singing in front of a green screen of fireflies.  Yeah, a bit plain of a PV.

Ranking by me: Tokainaka no Kare >>>>>>> Cabbage Hakusho ~Haru-hen~ >>>>Hotaru Matsuri no Hi

Overall: Honestly, with the decrease of attention for the SATOYAMA movement, it was no surprise that I had a lack of interest in 2013’s selection.  Peaberry’s was just an edited version of their first song, Jurin’s was boring, and GREEN FIELDS was so ignored.  I wonder what had happened here because I was so tired of it all.

Leave a comment »

H!P Profiles: SATOYAMA pt. 1

Peaberry – Cabbage Hakusho

Peaberry

L to R: Ayaka Wada, Riho Sayashi

Starting off with the bigger known group or the one that had a little more prominance, we have a duo group between Ayacho and Riho…two of the more controversial ladies amongst the fandom on whether their vocals work or not.  For a toss, we get Cabbage Hakusho which is surprisingly a ballad which most fans were already quite worried with it.  As such, Peaberry wasn’t all that bad considering their vocals weren’t pushed like normal.

So without talking about what SATOYAMA is about…it’s basically the revival of environment friendly groups (like EcoMoni & Tomoiki Ki wo Uetai).  Though it also shaped up to be like a revival of the shuffle units but not necessarily being one?  It’s weird.  So it really shows in the Cabbage Hakusho PV.  I mean the two are standing in a meadow basically and they go in a forest and inside a house…it’s a simplistic video really…oh yeah and something related to cabbage at the end…yeah it was that interesting hahah.

DIY♡ – Forefore ~Forest For Rest~

DIY

L to R: Saki Nakajima, Maimi Yajima, Miyabi Natsuyaki, Haruna Iikubo, Chinami Tokunaga

The largest of the four groups was actually DIY♡ which was mainly 4 of the H!P Kids and recently joined member Harunan.  When I saw them, I thought they were going to get some blah summer song which would’ve made sense with the outfits and all.  Though when I heard Forefore, I was surprised that it was a dance track and really didn’t fit with the other groups songs (which is probably a reason why I loved this group as much I did).

As for the PV, it really didn’t feel like environmental awareness to me.  It just seemed like the ladies just hanging out, dancing, and having a barbeque for the most part.  Also, the club scenes are a bit random in the first half of the PV…(oh yeah all the groups mentioned had two versions of their PV).  It didn’t do much like the other PVs had, but with a song like Forefore, I was more than happy to see all THE LEGS this video had to offer lmao!

Harvest – Forest Time

harvest

L to R: Erina Ikuta, Ayumi Ishida, Masaki Sato, Akari Takeuchi

The next group was a pretty nice treat as most listeners at that time didn’t have a full grasp on what the new members sound like (10th Gen Momusu & 2nd Gen S/mileage) so Harvest was a good taste for it (though only Takechan was here).  Their song, Forest Time is the cutest of the four songs and it definitely had the cutest voices thrown in as well.  Personally, I don’t remember too much of this song nor my excitement was really all that great with Harvest, but it could’ve been there was other things that caught my attention.

When I watched the PV again, it feels like the previous two PVs jammed together.  It has choreography and centers around a pretty pasture with farming as its main motif.  There’s something a bit too cheesy for my interests here and the girls while looking like they get along just fine…was a bit distracting from the whole SATOYAMA experience I suppose.  It isn’t bad, just not an interesting song or PV for me.

GREEN FIELDS – Boys be ambitious!

800px-GreenFields

L to R: Saki Shimizu, Yuka Miyazaki, Aika Mitsui

The group that REALLY caught my eye was actually GREEN FIELDS.  I mean a trio of different girls on different ideas.  I mean you have Captain who wasn’t too much of a surprise.  Aika who earlier had JUST graduated from Morning Musume so this marks her first act after it and Yuka Miyazaki who at the time of the group’s creation was under Up-Front, but not under H!P.  Their song, Boys be ambitious! like Peaberry is a ballad and it’s just as relaxing (or mind-numbing).  Of course, it was surprising to know that Aika actually got lead lines with Captain behind and Yuka getting a little here and there.

The PV is like most of the others, simple in nature and GREEN FIELDS kind of takes it to a new low.  They’re sitting around singing in a ho-hum leans oh and bicycling…yeah that’s really it for the most part.

Ranking by me: Forefore ~Forest For Rest~ >>>>>> Boys be ambitious! >>>>>> Forest Time >>>>>> Cabbage Hakusho

Overall: When Tsunku announced the SATOYAMA units (when it was just simply Peaberry and DIY♡) I was a little confused because it was another try at environmental awareness and to be honest that wasn’t interesting.  So this was a little worrisome.  When Harvest and GREEN FIELDS were announced later on in the year, I was even more worried and curious to know what would happen.  To be honest, I wasn’t interested in most of the songs here.  They were either ballads (which while I like GREEN FIELDS, it was a lil boring and Peaberrys was just the second coming of EcoMoni without the need of ~ass saving them~.  Harvest was too generic for my tastes and well…DIY♡ was the best one…the only memorable in my book.  I thought it was a one-time deal…BUT I WAS WRONG XD.

1 Comment »