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

Riho Sayashi ends her contract, officially leaving H!P

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After 3 years of silence from Riho, it was announced this morning that she has indeed ended her contract with the company.  I guess she just kind of let the contract continue without being too involved considering that she went AFK after her graduation.  I mean I’m pretty curious to why she didn’t do anything with the remaining time she had left or at least ended things earlier, but it is what it is.  It is interesting is coming shortly after Aika announced her leaving as well as they both were the only “soloists” left and now they’re gone.  Just odd IMO.

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Seems the trifecta has completed, the winners of the ONLY YOU Audition/new BEYOOOOONDS members!

I’m a little bit late here, but hey during the first BEYOOOOONDS FC performance, an announcement was made that the winners of the audition were finally announced and the missing triangle piece for BEYOOOOONDS, so shall we meet these new members?

Miyo Hirai

Hirai

Honoka Kobayashi

Kobayashi

Utano Satoyoshi

Satoyoshi

Now, there isn’t much of an opinion from myself as they’re brand spankin new members, but what we do know is that they’re Ichioka’s age range which is a nice move.  While it wasn’t 100% announced these 3 will be a unit, they (and the members of CHICA#TETSU & Ame no Mori Kawa Umi) got their member colors.  I’m now certain this collective will announce a debut single during the Winter Tour, it’s nice to finally our 3 units together.

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ANGERME gains 2 new members, what a shock eh?

Yup, earlier in the week, Ayacho had announced that there’d be new members added to the group in an announcement at the final live at Pacifico Yokohama and it happened, we get two new members!

Haruka Oota

Oota

It seems rather surprising that both girls hail from Hokkaido, but Haruka actually came from the Hokkaido branch of the Kenshuusei (the first to actually get lifted from there).  While I’m still kind of unsure about the HKKSS in general, it’s nice to see Haruka make the cut and I wonder what she’ll bring to the group!

Reira Ise

Ise

The other new gal, Reira hails from the ONLY YOU audition as a finalist (probably one of the winners) and from initial reports, unlike Haruka, she wasn’t into H!P and kind of pushed into it lol.  Granted it does give me slight worry on tenure, but she did end up joining.  She does kind of remind me of a mix of Reina Yokoyama & Kiki Asakura but we’ll see how she ends up faring in ANGERME.

 

Both girls will begin at the Winter Tour (which is the 2nd day after New Year’s so we got a little while before we hear them sing.

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Petit Best 19

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Track Listing

  1. YEAH YEAH YEAH / Hello Pro All Stars
  2. Morning Coffee (20th Anniversary Ver.) / Morning Musume 20th
  3. Hana ga Saku Taiyou Abite / Morning Musume ’18
  4. Are you Happy? / Morning Musume ’18
  5. Nakenai ze…Kyoukan Sagi / ANGERME
  6. Tade Kuu Mushi mo Like it! / ANGERME
  7. SEXY SEXY / Juice=Juice
  8. Kindan Shoujo / Juice=Juice
  9. Kaite wa Keshite no “I Love You” / Country Girls
  10. Matenai After Five / Country Girls
  11. Ashita Tenki ni Naare / Kobushi Factory
  12. Kitto Watashi wa / Kobushi Factory
  13. Teion Yakedo / Tsubaki Factory
  14. Kon’ya Dake Ukaretakatta / Tsubaki Factory
  15. Hyokkori Hyoutanjima / Kobushi Factory & Tsubaki Factory
  16. 43do / Hello! Pro Kenshuusei
  17. Hankouki! / Hello! Pro Kenshuusei Hokkaido
  18. Zouni de Kenkashitenja Nee yo / Yuka Miyazaki, Maria Makino, Ayano Kawamura

1. YEAH YEAH YEAH

I figured as much that Hello! Project would kick of this year’s compilation album with the “everyone is here” song that they released this year.  Sadly, unlike the past 2 tracks that did the same, I was pretty disappointed in this one (despite enjoying that it sold well).  The song though is just a bit too bland and forgetful for me to let it stick to my mind.  I mean there’s no solos which hurts and the arrangement feels similar to some other songs from Morning Musume (I guess it makes sense, but still…yikes).  Like I said, nice for the anniversary for H!P, but as a song to itself, just a bit plain, would’ve much preferred “Hello! History”.

2. Morning Coffee (20th Anniversary Ver.)

Released quite early in the year, Morning Musume continued with their celebration with the original members of the group by releasing an updated version of their major debut song (even after “Ai no Tane”).  I thought they had already celebrated last year (with “Morning Misoshiru” but I guess bringing in the original members: Nakazawa, Iida, Ishiguro, Fukuda, and Abe was more than necessary for a self-cover.  The song has a bit more oomph with a faster tempo and a pop/rock aesthetic.  It’s a decent track and hearing Morning Coffee with an updated arrangement is nice!

3. Hana ga Saku Taiyou Abite

Released simultaneously with the previous track digitally, I was pleasantly surprised to see Hana ga Saku Taiyou Abite make the cut over “Furari Ginza” since this was the superior song.  Since it was released early on in the year, bringing this electro track up is nice and reminded me why I enjoyed it so much.  I mean in the grand scheme of things, the song isn’t exactly stepping new ground and suits alongside various other EDM songs the group has pulled off, but it’s still a good dance track overall!

4. Are you Happy?

As the obvious choice from the get-go, Are you Happy? marked as part of the last single Haruna Ogata appeared on before her graduation.  Unlike “Hana ga Saku Taiyou Abite”, Are you Happy?’s EDM is a bit more club-like and has a lot of build-ups into various parts of the track.  Granted, the song still kind of feels a bit messy and using the repetition in parts of the track is different but has been done before, though I do like hearing Sakura’s cries and 12th Gen a little bit love here.  There’s a little bit of a tribal-like feel, but it’s still a bumping track regardless.  Not their best A-side of the 4 they released, but it’s passable.

5. Nakenai ze…Kyoukan Sagi

Moving onto ANGERME’s 2 tracks, I had zero doubts that these two tracks would be the ones chosen (this Petit Best had maybe one or two surprises).  Another EDM track comes this way, but this one fascinated me with how sparkly and how it reminded me of stuff like “Tsugitsugi Zokuzoku”.  I just get excited hearing this as it showcased their members in such a nice way and hearing Rikako, Musubu, and Akari just sound badass makes me incredibly happy.  One of my favorite A-sides of the year!

6. Tade Kuu Mushi mo Like it!

Though for their 2nd choice, I think I would’ve preferred “46-okunen LOVE” over this track.  Considering this was more something I connected to as a parallel to “Gashinshoutan”, with a little bit of some disco-vibes here.  Though I think this song struggled a little bit with me, although I found it interesting that Funakki got the only solo line it feels like.  Not bad, but like “Are you Happy?” there was better from this this year than this song.

7. SEXY SEXY

Juice=Juice didn’t feel like they had a lot to do this year with just a single and an album release (on top of lineup changes).  I was not expecting Juice=Juice to pull off sexy once again, then again it’s been quite a while since “Black Butterfly” right?  I really wasn’t expecting Nanami to really lead the song while the other members kind of have their own spotlight throughout, but Yanamin just had the push here.  While I thought that was an odd choice, she held her own and the other members even moreso.  This was a pretty good track (my favorite off the single it came from too).

8. Kindan Shoujo

Probably the first surprise, I wasn’t expecting to see a track from their sophomore album make the cut, but I was happy to see it moreso than seeing “Naite Ii yo” or “Vivid Midnight” make the cut (the latter’s MV is on the Blu-ray disc).  Now if you didn’t know, this was one of 3 songs from the album that included Manaka Inaba (the group’s newest member).  There’s just something so 80s about the song that makes me perky and upbeat.  It’s just catchy and nostalgic in the right ways.  Though the high notes are a bit pitchy for me, but still great choice and happy to see it on the compilation!

9. Kaite wa Keshite no “I Love You”

I’m a bit surprised that despite Country Girls’ essentially being on hiatus most of the year, they did release enough to make 2 spots (like the rest of the groups).  This song was released digitally at the tail end of 2017, I suppose it made sense to make the cut because it also got a PV for it.  Hearing Ozeki and Yamaki is just nice since they’ve been missing most of the year and giving them a song that’s a little like “Konamaiki Girl” and “Wakatteiru no ni Gomen ne”.  It’s pretty cute and poppy and still totally them!

10. Matenai After Five

However, if you were looking for something like what they were pulling off with “Boogie-Woogie LOVE”, then Matenai After Five might be more your thing!  There’s just something about this song is really sweet and groovy here and the group sound great here moreso than in the previous song.  Like a bit big band without the horns all over the place.  Despite that the digital single kind of went under the radar mostly, I kind of wish this and it’s other A-side got a PV.

11. Ashita Tenki ni Naare

Kind of surprised they went with the secondary A-side from the single than “Kore Kara da!”, but I suppose this was a better way to show off the group considering it was the first to have the 5 remaining members.  Ashita Tenki ni Naare was pretty much rockin’ the whole way through and they sound good together especially Hamachan, Wadasaku, and Minamina.  Although the hammy dialogue in the bridge could’ve been erased altogether…it’s just incredibly cringy.  Otherwise, it’s a pretty hard-hitting track and I suppose seeing it here over it’s main A-side was a good idea.

12. Kitto Watashi wa

Though, maybe two happy songs wasn’t exactly a strong point.  Though I immediately like this song WAY better than its sister A-side, “Naseba Naru”.  I mean unlike “Ashita Tenki ni Naare”, it’s definitely more poppier in arrangement and style which isn’t quite something Kobushi Factory does but it’s welcome I suppose.  I really do like the verses and then it turns into this power rock chorus with a steady beat and chant-worthy melody.  It was a surprising track from the group, but it came out pretty well!

13. Teion Yakedo

I feel like 2018 was really about Tsubaki Factory with their 2 singles and album!  As this song was technically released back in 2017 (as a preview for their 2018 single), Teion Yakedo was a bit more of a serious track for Tsubaki which was a nice change of pace with the EDM we’ve been getting.  While there wasn’t a lot in the way of solos, the songs cold feel really stuck out to me.  Different, but I enjoyed it!

14. Kon’ya Dake Ukaretakatta

In contrast, Kon’ya Dake Ukaretakatta is upbeat and quite the exciting pop track that I was kind of hoping would break the mold from the rest of the single which was more serious.  It’s just so fun to listen to and each of the members sound so excited and the whole package was just something I wasn’t expecting from Tsubaki.  Definitely another favorite within the year.

15. Hyokkori Hyoutanjima

One of the few songs that I hadn’t really taken a full listen to, yes it’s that song, the same one that Morning Musume covered a long time ago!  Though this time done by both Kobushi and Tsubaki members!  I mean it’s incredibly familiar to me so the song really isn’t totally different besides an original rap during the bridge.  The arrangement is a bit more sax-based though which is enough of a twist on it, but it’s OK for what it is and what it was used for.

16. 43do

I think the biggest surprise for this compilation is this track from the Kenshuusei’s sophomore album!  I wasn’t expecting any of them because it wasn’t highly promoted as a song (to be honest, I thought “Rainbow” if anything would’ve been chosen.  Now something to note is that not all of the Kenshuusei are involved instead 6 of them sang in the studio cut (Hikaru Inoue, Kirara Yonemura, Minami Okamura, Rena Doi, Yuhane Yamazaki, and Riai Matsunaga). It’s funny that 1/3 isn’t in the company anymore, 1/3 graduated into groups, and the last third are still Kenshuusei currently.  About the song, I really love the guitar intro and the tune goes into this funky vibe that sounds good and almost like old H!P.  The girls sound good together for the most part even if they’re yelling a lot (maybe except Hikarun).  It’s a pretty decent track all things considered.

17. Hankouki!

No surprise that the Hokkaido girls would find themselves with a 2nd single and luckily it came out before Ryo Kitagawa’s leaving.  Hankouki! was another track that kind of fell to the wayside after the first listen.  Coming back to it, it’s still more of the same poppy sound but it doesn’t quite sound like a forgotten Country Girls track.  Of course Manaka Inaba is also in it (because she was appointed as a leader to them before her re-addition to Juice=Juice.  The song still doesn’t quite leave much for me, but it’s nice that their 2nd single was brought in.

18. Zouni de Kenkashitenja Nee yo

Like last year, UPCOMING! had all those quirky songs that featured 2 or 3 H!P members together.  Well despite this being released in 2017, but missing the cut to be added on Petit Best 18 we find this track to be added here.  This featuring Miyazaki, Makino, and Kawamura together for this foodie song, Zouni de Kenkashitenja Nee yo is a bit of a weird one.  I mean the chorus is fine and all but the verses are a totally different arrangement and it’s mostly kind of sing-speak and I assume educating on the Zouni’s items.  It’s probably the oddest song of that bunch and weird as the album’s final track.

Tracks Recommended

  • Nakenai ze…Kyoukan Sagi
  • Kon’ya Dake Ukaretakatta
  • SEXY SEXY
  • Hana ga Saku Taiyou Abite
  • Kitto Watashi wa

I have to say that while Petit Best 19 has nothing new to be found on it, the songs chosen were overall quite nice tracks with a couple of “it had to be there”.  I swore there was going to be a couple of surprises (like maybe the two Tsubaki Factory songs from the Trolls cartoon).  Still, the compilation has decent songs overall and is better than last years.

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Aika Mitsui retires from entertainment industry, leaves H!P

MitsuiAikasolo2012

In a surprising announcement so shortly after Yanamin announced her graduation, we get news that Aika Mitsui is going to retire from the industry to focus on culinary arts.  Granted, the news isn’t quite alarming because Mittsi has been kind of quiet for the last couple years (apparently she was doing some of the English subtitles for some of the H!P PVs).  Also her last actual music release was the 2013 single as a member of the SATOYAMA unit, GREEN FIELDS.  So it’s been almost 6 years (not regarding the couple lives she’s performed here and there).

That said, she really didn’t do much for me after her graduation from Morning Musume, but I wished she had done more…

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Nanami Yanagawa to graduate from Juice=Juice/Country Girls & H!P in March

Country_Girls_Yanagawa_Nanami_-_Matenai_After_Five_promo

Announced this morning, it seems that Yanamin has gone off to say that she’ll graduate Hello! Project and her groups in March of next year!

Honestly, it has been 3 years, but it doesn’t feel quite as long considering she’s only been in Juice=Juice for almost half that time.  Yeah, she wasn’t quite the addition at first when she and Funaki joined Country Girls, but her cutesy side definitely started to rub off and then the sudden switch to Juice=Juice was a little weird, but she slowly started fitting into the group, especially taking lead in “SEXY SEXY”.  Personally, not so sure how I feel about her graduation as she hasn’t quite left a lasting impression yet, but to know she wants to further her education is commendable.

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WOO, finally we have names…wait more?

Yup! So on Thursday, we finally got the news (well technically we got it earlier in the week through leaks, but regardless) of Ichioka & Takase/Kiyono’s group names finally and boy were they a doozy!  Let’s talk about them!

CHICA#TETSU

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So in the video announcement, we first get the name of Ichioka’s group CHICA#TETSU which continues the pattern of using symbols in the name (at least I don’t have to copy and paste the hash mark, unlike the Celsius mark in C-ute’s name >.>).  I kind of dig it and the play on words in different ways is pretty nice.  Probably the easiest to remember once they start to release singles and whatnot.

Ame no Mori Kawa Umi (RFRO)

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Next up was the announcement of Takase’s and Kiyono’s group and I haven’t seen an actual full Kanji group name since at least Tomoiki Ki wo Uetai (surprise because this name does give off a SATOYAMA/UMI vibe).  It’s a bit different and with the company using the nickname RFRO, it’ll be interesting to see what this group does.

BEYOOOOONDS

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I thought we were done at that point, but it seems surprises continue when they brought both groups together for the third announcement!  It seems that these two groups (and the winners of the ONLY YOU audition) will form a unit together called BEYOOOOONDS which is such a goofy name, I’m sure with the current backlash, it might just be shortened down to just BEYONDS, but yeah, this name is just not OK.  It seems though that this collective is starting to get some steam by forming two original tracks already, “Megane no Otoko no Ko” & “Bunkasai Jikkou Iinchou no Koi”.  So I wonder if they’ll wait to release these songs once the winners of the ONLY YOU audition are announced.

Which also brings to mind that another unit is going to be made from those winners like how CHICA#TETSU & Ame no Mori Kawa Umi working out.

Minis.?

Normally, I wouldn’t bat an eye at something like this but at the Hallo! Fest going on this weekend, a surprising performance came from a group(?) called Minis.? which consisted of Yokoyama, Morito, Kamikokuryo, and Funaki (ignore Yurina here).  They performed an original track called “Complex ni Sayonara!” (the same name of the book, they released).  I’m sure this is a one-off group so I assume this might end up being a track on Petit Best 19…but this was still worthwhile news.

 

2019 is already shaping up to be one busy year for the new units, so I can’t wait to see what’s in store!

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Morning Musume PVs Through the Years!: Well…I mean they gave it a 2nd go!

Er…Welcome back to the Momusu PV series!  Didn’t think I’d be making one of these so soon, but it seems like H!P is seriously pushing the 20th Anniversary for H!P hard this year, moreso than last year with just Morning Musume! (although to be fair half of the PVs in this post were released back in 2017 so I guess?  Anyways, today we’re going to go back and forth in time to look at the updated versions of both Ai no Tane & Morning Coffee as well as the new tracks Gosenfu no Tasuki & Hana ga Saku Taiyou Abite!

Ai no Tane (20th Anniversary Ver.)

The Song:  Even though the last post I made in the series showed kind of how disappointed I was with Morning Musume celebrating their 20th year as a group was nearing, it wasn’t until the end of 2017 where things started looking up with a surprise announcement!  It wasn’t just the fact that Morning Musume was going to do an updated version of Ai no Tane (the group’s indie debut), but they were also bringing the original 5 members that sung the original (Abe, Iida, Nakazawa, Ishiguro, and Fukuda) back together for this special moment.

What Genre is it?: Well, it’s definitely poppy and in the realms of a current pop sound H!P can muster.  Though I will say compared to the original it doesn’t feel at all dated.

The Premise: Doesn’t seem to be one here…maybe the idea of the older members tending to flowers is a things since the younger generation is holding them..

The Setting: There seems to be two main settings for the song (possibly 3).  The first that shows up is the dance shot where its Morning Musume ’17 in a house/studio with 3 background of flowers (blue, pink, and red).  While the OG members are in a cute little room.  MM’18 though do get group shots in front of the flower murals from the dance shot.  It’s a simple looking PV for what it’s worth.

The Outfits: All white….*sigh* there’s just no end to these white outfits are there?  Everyone is donning a white dress of some sort in MM’18 while the OG are also donning white but they’re slightly different (especially with Aya, Kaori, and Asuka).  Very plain looking outfits I’d say.

The Choreography: Considering that the dancing was left to MM’17, I wasn’t expecting too much and just from the shortened clip (yeah, this was a digital release hence why there’s no full PV on YouTube), the dance I did get to see was VERY simple moves for the group, a bit more than the original (which had none).  Some side shimmys and light poses…nothing too out of the normal.

PV as a whole: Being as this was the start of the celebration for Morning Musume, the new version of Ai no Tane was a great way to kick things off, but I wish the PV wasn’t so overly filled with white outfits and the setting as such too (be happy that there was even color from the flower murals and the stuff place around the room when the old MM members were singing).  Still, it’s nice to see original 5-nin here though…well worth the surprise!

Gosenfu no Tasuki

The Song: Released as a digital song prior to the release of Morning Musume ’17s 15th studio album, Gosenfu no Tasuki is technically the last PV to feature Haruka Kudo as a member of the group and now “Wakaindashi!”.  It’s also surprisingly a ballad for the group so it’s a bit of a surprise that it wasn’t included on their album, but on the “Hatachi no Morning Musume” album (though not quite sure why it was chosen as a digital song though).

What Genre is it?: A piano/strings ballad

The Premise: None unless following a staff around is considered something..

The Setting: Disregarding PVs that are essentially live performance footage, I would say this PV marks is the most boring of Morning Musume’s PV discography hands down.  It’s just all white with the only figment of color coming from the staff, lyrics and small animations and the girls’ skin.  Otherwise, a plain white background is just not a good choice.

The Outfits: It’s like they continued to wear their stuff from “Ai no Tane” here, but it is indeed different clothing just the same boring ass white…

The Choreography: None

PV as a whole: You could possibly guess that I found this to be a weak PV and release overall.  The song itself might have some nice parts about it, but I just couldn’t deal with the PV it got…it felt super cheap and the lack of color besides the above mentioned just didn’t help its situation.  Yeah…what a bland song and PV this is…

Morning Coffee (20th Anniversary Ver.)

The Song: Didn’t we just get an updated version with “Morning Misoshiru”?  We’re getting another update but this time updated with the original 5 members (and one less Kudo) once again in tow?  I suppose it makes sense since it is the group’s first major single and this was used to promote their 20th anniversary album, “Hatachi no Morning Musume” but feels like not a lot of time was passed for this one.

What Genre is it?: Comparing it to the original real quick, the song is slightly faster and the arrangement is bit more pop/rock than the originals more 90’s pop vibe.  It might throw older fans off, but I feel it fits with the current H!P sound.

The Premise: None

The Setting: Maybe it’s just me, but when I saw the overall setting I get this cheap feel of “Go Girl ~Koi no Victory” in my head from the little shop and building that could be from Hello! Morning.  Though it is just a set and that to me feels a little more depressing.  Doesn’t that the spotlights that shine during the chorus added more to the poor budget here.

The Outfits: I will say that I do LOVE the throwback for the outfits in this PV directly connecting to the original Morning Coffee outfits back in the late 90’s.  I mean they’re not direct copies (MM’18 looks a bit more uniform and not donning turtlenecks and knee-high boots and the elder members are wearing longer skirts too).  Just a nice call back and it is the lone outfit they wear here too.

The Choreography: A bit more lively here and I especially adore the into where we’re introduced to the members by generation.  Does seem like the younger girls get the more active role in the dancing while the 1st Gen ladies are doing more of the swaying (they’re old…don’t give them too much flak for not going for it).

PV as a whole: I was WAY more into this PV than I was the last two by a pretty big margin and it seems a bit more effort was put into this.  I also loved seeing the younger girls react a bit more naturally with the 1st Gen ladies who also felt more at home and having a fun time reliving this song.  I’m just still elated to see Aya and Asuka join back into the world.

Hana ga Saku Taiyou Abite

The Song: Considering all 4 songs were released digitally initially before finding their way to “Hatachi no Morning Musume”.  I find this one the least info heavy about because its an original song like “Gosenfu no Tasuki” was in 2017.  Also sticks out on this post because of its sound as well.

What Genre is it?: It was the only song from “Hatachi” that was EDM-centric and one of three songs off that mini that only had the current Morning Musume members in it.

The Premise: None to be found

The Setting: The first thing I noticed was the stage where the dance was shot…A black platform in the middle with red drapes spreading out across the area.  To be fair, the shiny look it has makes it look rather cheap (almost like tape?).  Though I do like the silhouettes of flowers interspersed across the white parts of the stage giving it a bit more something to an otherwise plain stage.  There’s also parts where girls are standing in front of a grey background with petals falling and even some girls like Maachan, Eripon, and Haachin falling into petals as well.  The last chorus though has raised roses and I thought that looked pretty neat for the tone of the song.  Not the best setting, but definitely an interesting one.

The Outfits: Wow 3/4 of the videos I watched in this post were white outfits…this is pretty embarrassing to say the least.  They do look more flowing than the other 2 though I’ll give it that and it wasn’t a total bust because of solo shots of the girls and the silhouettes of the patterns shown on their outfits added a bit of neat visual trickery to boring clothes.

The Choreography: Of the 4 videos, I would say this had the strongest choreo (but considering the competition, it wouldn’t take too much to bypass them anyways).  It’s what you’d expect from Morning Musume as of late and I appreciated that one of the songs had a powerful dance behind it.  Do love how it flows and the girls kind of rotate around each other a LOT.

PV as a whole: I feel like being the lone EDM song here kind of makes it stick out in this celebration of Morning Musume’s 20th year and I think we could’ve had another one…but it’s whatever.  Hana ga Saku Taiyou Abite reminds musically a little bit of “Jama Shinaide Here We Go!” but it’s an oddball due to celebration circumstances, but it’s a decent song and easily could’ve been an A-side.

 

NEXT TIME: BOTH HARUNAS GONE!

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Ciao Bella Cinquetti has disbanded well…I was late on this!

Ciao_Bella_Cinquetti_(August_2016)

Yeah, I missed this piece of news until after the fact it already happened but after a little over 11 years, THE Possible / Ciao Bella Cinquetti has thrown in the towels and performed for the last time back on August 2nd.  It is rather sweet though that the last song they performed was “Young DAYS!!!” (their debut) and even more of a surprise bringing back Oose and Akiyama to bring back the original 6 together for one more hurrah!

Now, I’m a little surprised they didn’t get to release one more thing (the last was a measly digital single back in December of last year).  I think they could’ve simply released a best album, especially since they lasted longer than both their H!P sisters, Berryz Kobo and C-ute!  Still, as the last kind of breath from TNX (which also fell apart), but they left a nice mark!

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Haruna Iikubo to graduate from MM/H!P in the Fall!

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Announced today, the other Haruna will be graduating during the Fall tour later on this year to move on and do more within the entertainment industry!

At the beginning to probably halfway through her tenure, Harunan was pegged as the worst from the group as she was lanky and her vocals were strange versus the remainder of the group who were to be fair further ahead (I feel like her model background was why she was chosen).  Though once 12th Gen was added, all of a sudden it felt like Harunan was getting suddenly better in both dancing & singing enough that she wasn’t sticking out like a sore thumb and the last two years, she’s just been on my radar.  Figured that she would announce her graduation considering she is 24 (the eldest of the group too).  Still, going to miss her a bit after…let’s hope like Duu, she gets prominence in her final single!

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