domingo, 3 de agosto de 2014

A word about Berryz Kobo

I think by this point we've all given our reactions to yesterday's announcement, be it over twitter, tumblr, forum posts or more organized blog entries. This is mine, expanding my tweets from yesterday. I haven't posted in a long time, even when I did endeavour to use this space regularly at the beginning of the year, but this is certainly one of the most important changes that will happen to Hello! Project, in a while.

Berryz Kobo's announcement of "activities suspension" does not come off as a surprise. Ever since we had a string of completely uninspired singles last year there have been people who were certain the end was near. More so this year when Sugaya Risako, the youngest member, turned 20, and thus, became an adult.

The tipping point for many, I think, was their latest single, Futsuu, Idol 10nen Yatterannai Desho?, which lyrics talk about the near impossibility of remaning in the industry for 10 years, a feat that seven of the original eight members of Berryz have conquered. Many fans thought that the lampshading lyrics were the ultimate sign for their disbandment. Honestly, I wanted to believe that it was nothing more than a celebration for that very important milestone.

It wasn't, and the majority were proven right yesterday.

Instead of using the terms 'disbandment' or 'breaking up', the members decided on wording it as an 'indefinite suspension of activities', even if they have pretty much admitted that it's only a nicer phrasing for the same thing.

UF has previously used instances of ambiguous wording to explain some of their movements, like the second generation of S/mileage being added because Tsunku had stated two years previously that the lineup wasn't definitive. Or never really graduating Satoda Mai from Country Musume and now auditioning girls for a new lineup.

I do not believe that new members are coming, not now, nor in the future. I am pretty sure that Berryz Kobo's lineup will remain as it is now forever. However, the wording they used covers explaining future instances of reunion tours, or albums, or future appearances under the Berryz Kobo name the members might have (The wording is not really necessary, given that Melon Kinenbi have performed together even afteir their disbandment, but it does give hope).

About the members, they haven't said anything about their individual futures. Ten years is a long time, and I don't think anyone could blame them if after finishing their activities as Berryz next spring they want to disappear from the entertainment industry. At the same time, I couldn't blame the fans for being disappointed or sad.

For one, I would be really sad to never listen to Risako's singing again. Or to never see Momoko's Momochi character again, as grating as it can be. Yurina could really pursue a modeling career, she is tall enough, not to mention pretty, for that. I do suppose that every member will decide their future in the following months, and I hope what they choose for themselves is what will make them happy.

Finally, Hello! Project after Berryz Kobo. This year, the conglomerate is also losing their oldest member, Michishige Sayumi, after eleven years of career.

That leaves us with 25 members. As I pointed in some tags in a tumblr post yesterday, we had also 25 members when the last shocking announcement in Hello! Project was made, 2010's triple graduation and the audition for the 9th generation.

25 members, and the only ones who were full members four years ago are °C-ute, Wada Ayaka and Fukuda Kanon.

The rest, eighteen girls, came in 2011 and after. It's amazing, even if Fukumura, Kudou Takeuchi, Katsuta, Miyamoto and Takagi were part of Hello! Project in 2010, they were Eggs, and I don't think they really count.

I say that it is amazing because in only four years, Hello! Project has almost completely changed their faces. Right now, it's youthful and full of potential, so much contrast to 2010 when everyone except for S/mileage were experienced performers, and even S/mileage had been eggs for six years then.

I feel like Berryz Kobo's hiatus highlights the change hugely, much like the recent graduations of Morning Musume have made all of us realize that the group is on hands of the 9-11th generation now.

While very sad for the end of Berryz, I can't help but be very, very excited about what the future of Hello! Project holds.

domingo, 29 de mayo de 2011

Auditions that weren't expected AT ALL.

Uhm, I still can't make my mind about this. Yes, the group above isn't a mistake. Today (Or was it yesterday?) Tsunku announced what probably will be the most shocking news in the year for HaroPro. At their first year anniversary, it was announced that S/mileage would be getting a new member through an audition process.

Girls that will be able to audition must have between 13-18 years, and through June they'll be hosting the audition at TKP Shibuya Conference Center. Not like the Momusu auditions, the first round of these will be a question and singing part, instead of first choosing by looks.

Now... no, I can't still make my mind. I'm shocked, really shocked. More shocked than I was when last year they announced the triple grad and the kyukkie audition, more shocked than with the juukie audition and of course, more shocked than with Aichan's grad.

Probably this time I'm in the majority who thought that S/mileage would be a more popular Melon Kinenbi, four members that would stick together through a long time without any changes, as Berryz and °C-ute. It seems it's totally not the case. And yes, Tsunku did say once that the group's lineup was prone to changes, but everyone assumed it only applied until they finally debuted majorly, and me, coming to know S/mileage after Ganbaranakutemo ee nende! was released, completely thought the girls were out of danger.

... um. Perhaps we are feeling what fans of Morning Musume circa Morning Coffee felt when the 2nd gen came in? Perhaps now it's worse, as S/mileage has been together as a group for two years now, and in Eggs, they knew each other since 2004, and to change that image of what 'S/mileage' will be hard. If a graduation would be painful, imagine to add a completely new girl? Plus it'd totally be a slap in the face for Saho Akari, who is now in UFZS.

Plus, members auditions. In Hello! Project, I thought it was only the Musume groups that held auditions for new members, Morning Musume having had as of now, 10 different auditions, and Coconuts Musume, but their auditions were unsuccesful, so they may not count. Even Asami and Miuna from Country Musume were found through auditions for other groups, if I'm not mistaken. So S/mileage having auditions is shocking, really.

That said, I really hope that in the case they do find a girl in these auditions, that will be the only change of S/mileage's lineup until their disbandment or a graduation in the worst scenario. Because I want Morning Musume to remain the group that is known by their audition and graduation method. And... D: Do not want. Really.

I haven't been able to watch this video, but from comments in H!O, it seems the four girls were really upset about the news, not wanting the new member and Yuuka and Dawa even teared up.
Must be sad and depressing, really.

And that's all for today. I was hoping to do a review of Only You, but, this was way more important. I shall have the Only You review soon, though.

domingo, 8 de mayo de 2011

Another one?! YES! Morning Musume 10th Generation Auditions.

Ah, UFA never stops surprising us, right? Yes, today, I woke up to find that even before the first tour of the kyukkies finished, a 10th generation audition is already announced!

I'm sure the most shocked are the new-ish fans who got into Momusu during the 9-8nin lineup that finished last December. Ok, I'm a new fan too, but at first I cared more about the OGs, and only started to really care about the current lineup when Rival Survival had started and I knew to not become too attached to Eri, Jun or Lin. So let's say I'm as excited as a little kid about these auditions.

Now for some actual information, according to translations, the title for the auditions is Genki Jirushi, the date of applications submissions starts today and finished on June 13th. The age, if you're interested in applying, is from 10 to 17 years old. I've also read that the chosen will be two girls, and that they'll be introduced at Ai-chan's graduation concert, but it seems those are only rumours.

It's also a rumor that Gaki may be graduating soon. But, because she'll be in fact the leader, I actually hope for her to last around what Yossy lasted when she became leader. Even so, a graduation for her, Sayumi, Reina and even Aika should be really expected and not take anyone by surprise. Even if I actually want Reina to be gone... Yeah.

As for my expectations, I hope for this generation to bring even more personality into the group than Zukki brought, and a vocal ace wouldn't be any bad. I wonder if the left eggs will be allowed to audition, as with the last audition? Which reminds me, Tsunku, we NEED a new Egg audition!

And other than to say I'm glad that it's now that I entered the fandom that MM is going back to the previous custom of regular audition/graduation, I've got nothing to add.

Official Site for the Audition (in Japanese):
Sources for the news:
TokyoHive and Aramatheydidnt @ LJ should be useful too.

miércoles, 27 de abril de 2011

Not so short comments about Dream Morning Musume concert

I finished listening to a fanrecording~ lol, took me three days to finish, but, I managed to do it. So here we go, my impressions about it. I don't want to listen to the rip again while listening more carefully because I want to wait when a DVD is released. So here we go!

About the setlist, it's pretty much the expected, a combination of both discs from Dreams 1 plus Shabondama and Iroppoi Jirettai, in part I believe it's because neither Sexy Boy or Ame no Furanai... were included. In part, too, I believe it's because they were the debut singles of Mikitty and Koharu, though... my Mr. Moonlight is missing. Ok, we have Souda! We're Alive to make up for it, but still.

Oh, right, there's the awesome medley too. You see, to see Say Yeah! Motto Miracle Night performed (or at least part of it) it's always exciting and awesome.

Yeah, I really like the setlist, probably because after all, I love the songs from Disc 2, and most from Disc 1. The way of starting and finishing the concert are also great, Love Machine as the opener, as saying 'hey, remember the press conference? well, here's the rest of the awesomeness', and then at the end, the inspiring songs from the album, I Wish and Aozora ga Itsumademo... Just a song is missing. But I'm gonna forget that for now. Or at least try.

As for the performers, well, they are all awesome. As a post on LJ's aramatheydidn't said, 'The flawless girls who once sold millions copies of their music (and also Kusumi Koharu)'. They just can't dissapoint, even if some hadn't performed in a full concert since Elder Club's graduation. Heck, I think the last ones who did a concert were Rika and Yossy in Gatas Ryu 2010 and their Hangry and Angry tour, and just before that, Koha at her graduation.

No, they are performing with all of their energy. And actually, they sound pretty much the same they did 10 years ago, of course with some voices (such as Yossy and Makoto's) having matured.

Line distribution... well, Abe-san and Mikitty dominated, but even so it's pretty even. Plus those two can actually sing. Or perhaps it's just me who likes their voices.

That's everything, I think. I'm waiting anxiously for the announcement of a DVD, just let's hope it's not a fanclub one. Enough of crazy fangirly me for today~ and btw, the audio rip can be found at jph!p :D

lunes, 18 de abril de 2011

Quite late, but blonde Leader deserves a comment.

Yes, I'm late to this, I know that yesterday this was the topic of so many blogs and forums, but I guess that one more post about the matter does not hurt.

So, our Morning Musume leader Takahashi Ai dyed her hair blonde, apparently for the upcoming single Only You (to be released June 15th).

Err. Ok, she looks good, but then again, every Ai-chan after debut!Ai-chan looks good. Still, to me she looks weird. Probably it's the fact I've been so used to brown-haired Takahashi, isn't it? But still...

Ok, so she first cut her hair 10 cms for a PB. Then, like two or three weeks ago, she dyed the tips of her hair pink, for reasons only Takahashi can know. Even so, who would have guessed that the one to break the monotony in hair colors between senpai members of Morning Musume would be the usually dull leader Takahashi Ai? I'll tell you something, me not.

So, because at Hello! Online I read someone asking who else had had blond hair in Momusu other than Ai and Marippe, let's take a walk around the blond girls that Momusu has had~

Ogawa Makoto:
Who else than Mako to have weird hair-colors? Cause, really, she is Mako~ She was, after all, the first gokkie to have her hair dyed, wasn't she? And if you think about weird hair, you think in Ogawa Makoto. Or perhaps that's just me. Still, she looked cool when she had black hair with a blonde streak. Worse blonde was around the release of Chokkan 2. Which, I'm not quite sure the picture is from that period.

Yaguchi Mari:
Makoto may be the association between weird and hair, but if you ask about blond hair and Morning Musume, you ought get Mari as an answer. Short blond hair fits her so well, tiny as she already is~ I prefer Marippe with dark-blond hair, but, she's still cute~ And, of course, having her hair dyed since the... Koi no Dance Site days, it's pretty hard to imagine her with a dark brown or black color. Mariii~

Yoshizawa Hitomi:
One of the girls with the most changes hair-wise. God, you just have to see how many different styles she's had just for Digista Teens! But, as we're just taking super-blond colors into account, and only colors had during Momusu tenure, I think the choice is easy. Let's show the time she deviated the most from her usual normal/decent/dark blonde to brown area.

Actually, there are two times, three if we count the blonde par
ts of Yossy in Iropppoi Jirettai. The others are, one, Roman ~My Dear Boy~ time period, which I believe the picture showed is from, and the other is from the second Mecha Ike special, which I'm not going to screencap. So yeah. Ah, I just wonder, does the blonde part of her Hangry hair count?... Don't think so, seeing as how I just said a few lines ago this would be just Momusu-tenure hair.

Nakazawa Yuko:
Ah, big boss. Awesome leader had to close this listing in an awesome way. Uh, so. Most of the time Yuko has pretty and elegant looks... and then, clashing a LOT with them came Yuko Nakazawa circa 2001. Blonde hair complete with blue contacts. I'm serious, only Yuu-chan could have pulled the combo as well as she did. But then again, for the original leader, who is older than the mothers of some kyukkies... Yeah, Yuko is the epitome of awesomness. All hail Queen Yuko.

I've finished! Fuu~ so 5 members out of 29 that've dyed their hair really blonde. Well, it's not too bad, considering that most members choose to have brown hair. I'm proud of myself, having finished this entry in a day~ But... oh, wait. Another blonde girl?

Who is that, you say? EH?! Sayumin?! Hahahaha. Of course not, it's just a wig~ Wow, talk about drastic changes. It's not as if Sayumi couldn't be a blonde. But her black hair is like her signature mark, I hope she remains that way ^^~


So! Let's start blogging!

Welcome to Seishun Collection, Itze's new Idol Blog!

(: I'm Itze, teenager, girl, from Central America, and most importantly, a quite new fan of the Japanese Idol world. And because I'm this shy thing, who doesn't like posting in forums that much, but still wanted to express her thoughts on news relating (mostly) Hello! Project and sometimes AKB48 and Momoiro Clover, I created this blog, Seishun Collection.

Some things to be clear on: My favorite idol group is Morning Musume, hence, this blog will be full of them. My favorite current member is 9th generation Suzuki Kanon, and overall, 4th generation Yoshizawa Hitomi. Member I don't like? Tanaka Reina. Favorite songs tend to be the crazy, go lucky genki songs, so, perhaps you'll digress with some of the things I write?

Anyway, I hope you enjoy reading the blog, comment a lot, and the most important thing, become a regular reader :D

- Itze