Alice no Toge [Alice's Thorn] episode 1 review

Opened a new blog exclusively for Japanese drama reviews. From now on, I will post reviews there.
Ritsu no Dorama Land

NEWS UPDATE: Pilot viewership rating was 14.2% which is highest among two other dramas with high anticipation – Mozu and BORDER. Mozu had 13.3% while BORDER (Oguri Shun) garnered 9.7%. This is a great kickoff for Alice. I’m sure viewers were curious and anticipate Ueno Juri’s return to drama after 3 years of absence. Add that to the suspense and fast-paced episode. Let’s hope the screenwriter will be able to keep things fresh and unpredictable.

*I hope someone will pick this drama up for subbing. I watched the first episode without subs because I couldn’t wait. First of all, Ueno Juri is one of my fav J-actresses and it’s been ages since her last dorama. In fact, the last one she did was the taiga drama, Gou (2011). So it’s really nice to have her in a regular drama again.

Secondly, there’s Joe Odagiri. I don’t really watch his stuffs but from all of what I’ve seen, they seem to be pretty good. Hence, having both Joe and Juri in one drama, it’s hard not to give it a go!

This is just a brief review/recap of the episode, I won’t go into details but just what I think. Ueno Juri plays the lead named Asumi Mizuno whose father, a doctor in Seirin University Hospital, died during an operation 15 years ago. She then embarked on a journey to investigate the truth about his father’s death as she believes something was not right. Basically, she studied to become doctor and joined Seirin. She found two different records of her father’s operation report and obviously, someone changed it indicating medical error.

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I love how this first episode went. I like the fact that her character was so dark and they didn’t wait till the end to show it. In fact, 10 minutes in, they already showed where she lives, the shabby studio-like apartment, and her secret den. She’s got all pictures of the suspects pinned up on one side of the wall. Tonnes of record files for each of the suspect.

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The first suspect she went after was the guy above. I like the reference of Alice in Wonderland and the Humpty Dumpty lol…I bet they chose him just because he’s bald.

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Didn’t take her long to move in to Humpty Dumpty.Alice no Toge ep01 (848x480 x264).mp4_snapshot_09.55_[2014.04.13_17.25-tile

She lured him up to the rooftop with multiple copies of the records one late night…

I wonder how long it took her to paste all these lol…

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Guy tried to remove some on the side of the wall of the building, climbed down the rope ladder, giving her the perfect opportunity to threaten him.Alice no Toge ep01 (848x480 x264).mp4_snapshot_12.44_[2014.04.13_17.25.18]

She said it’s been 15 years since the father’s death…she changed her name, threw away everything else and focused on chasing down the culprits who killed her father.

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Upon threatening Humpty Dumpty, he gave in and revealed everything. He promised to help her in her mission…so she got herself a spy within the society.Alice no Toge ep01 (848x480 x264).mp4_snapshot_14.27_[2014.04.13_17.47.28]

Next target is this Date sensei. Basically, she’s pushing this new technology called NOA. She found a perfect ‘mouse’ or patient for the system and despite Asumi’s doubt, she brushed her off saying ‘patients are meant to be mice for doctors’…that obviously, pissed Asumi lol.

Look at that death stare xD

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Midway, we’re introduced to Joe Odagiri’s character, Nishikado ^^ He’s a journalist and met Asumi at the hospital grounds one day. He seems to have taken interest in her. I’m not sure what relationship he had with her in the past, but in the flashback scene, it looked like he could be someone she knew.

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He knew Asumi’s father because we saw in the flashback, they were sitting under the sakura tree, eating together.

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It is revealed that Asumi has been adopted by another person, who owns a diner.

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While having dinner one night at her stepdad’s place, she met Nishikado again.

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She tried not to make much contact with him but he was making conversation with her. Alice no Toge ep01 (848x480 x264).mp4_snapshot_30.20_[2014.04.13_19.03.09]

Nishikado mentioned he came here a lot in the past with her younger sister. I wondered if Nishikado’s sister was once Asumi’s father’s patient, hence the flashback where they were sitting together.Alice no Toge ep01 (848x480 x264).mp4_snapshot_30.21_[2014.04.13_19.03.16]

Nishikado was surprised that the chef is Asumi’s father and said they’re not alike at all. So when her stepdad tried to explain to him and was pointing to the picture on the wall of Asumi and her real father…Asumi quickly pushed the wine glass onto the ground. That was a close call. She didn’t want Nishikado to know who her real father was.

But that didn’t stop Nishikado from suspecting something.

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For some reason, Asumi tried to get close to this guy below. Oh wait, did a little research. He’s Gendai’s son. Gendai is a higher-up Prof I think.

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Asumi planted a fake flower delivery to her, which released fake smoke at her apartment and when the fire department called, Date rushed home. Asumi then took the opportunity to explain to the patient she was trying to get for NOA system about the operation. She never mentioned anything about NOA to the patient so basically, the patient signed for the normal operation instead of NOA. This caused the Date to lose the patient for NOA.

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However, due to the support from the higher ups, the Date still managed to push for the NOA tech. She needed to prove the system in order to become Professor.

more flashbacks…

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I can’t understand in detail but it seemed like her father was framed for some crime after death. Young Nishikado (the guy below) showed her the newspaper clip at the funeral about her father.Alice no Toge ep01 (848x480 x264).mp4_snapshot_42.30_[2014.04.13_19.44.01]

This guy below, Gendai (higher up Professor who supports the NOA sensei) told her that her father is ‘kuzu’ or ‘society trash’ at the funeral. Wow…just wow…whatever it is, you don’t say stuffs like that during a funeral. That was hurtful even to me as a viewer, can you just imagine how that feels to a young girl?Alice no Toge ep01 (848x480 x264).mp4_snapshot_42.32_[2014.04.13_19.44.07]

Asumi trying to plot something against Date.

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I don’t think I’ve mentioned that Chiaki Kuriyama is also in this drama. She was in Team Batista drama last season, have yet to watch the finale of that drama. Well, she plays a nurse here. Not much screentime yet but we’ll see how significant her role will be in the future.

Asumi went to the reception for Date’s wedding (with Humpty Dumpty’s help xD)

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Asumi knew Date was tampering with the patient’s record so she tried to get data from her computer at home. After some ruckus with the fake cake delivery and some gas, the guests rushed out.

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However, when she tried to transfer data from the computer, the Date’s fiance caught her in the office.

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Now we’re thinking she’s gonna get exposed right?

Well…apparently, Date’s fiance acted like nothing happened afterwards and Asumi got away. At this point, we don’t know what occured between her and Date’s fiance.

During the conference for NOA patient, the records were different from those shown on slide and the handouts.

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Everyone was shocked that Date said she can finish this operation within 3 hours. However the real record showed otherwise.

I like it when Asumi has this subtle smile whenever her plan goes as planned.

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Date’s fiance appeared. So now we know that Asumi told him the truth about Date. He does not approve of Date’s doings.Alice no Toge ep01 (848x480 x264).mp4_snapshot_49.26_[2014.04.13_20.10.50]

Nishikado was there too for the press briefing.

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Prof Gendai was pissed with Date and Asumi is winning at the moment.Alice no Toge ep01 (848x480 x264).mp4_snapshot_51.52_[2014.04.13_20.17.58]

Things are just getting started! Asumi’s probably screwed up a bit in her head lol…

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She threatened Date next.

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Date then confessed to the mistake but also blamed it on another doctor who was there. So I guess…we’ll see how Asumi goes for the others in the next episode.

Poor Date got her tummy tattooed with Asumi’s father’s name.

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This is SUCH A GREAT FIRST EPISODE!

I am officially more than impressed. I didn’t expect Asumi’s character to be this dark and twisted. Ueno Juri does a very good job portraying Asumi so far and I can’t wait just to see what plans will she come up with next.

O_O looks like Nishikado found out her identity. He knew from the beginning when they met under the sakura tree. He asked her what’s her real plan in this hospital, until she changed her name? Is it to avenge her father’s death?

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I think I’ll review this drama from now. At first, I thought of doing this just for the first epi since it’s been a while since I do drama reviews. But this exceeded my expectation. It seems to be quite exciting and filled with suspense.

Till the next epi!

Kinokuniya

Went to Kinokuniya KLCC today for some manga. Apparently, only 20% of the total amount of voucher can be used to purchase manga/comics T_T So I ended up with only two manga. It’s okay, I’ll find other books I want and make another trip for that remaining manga.

So I spent RM100 book voucher for these. I still have RM150 xD

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I bought a quick vocabulary book for levels N5/N4. Gotta brush up my Japanese again…DSC_0056

Decided to get another volume of Shingeki because I’m currently at Vol.10. I just finished volume 9 last week. The latest volume is at 13 already. Oh well…I can’t catch up that fast.

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Got another manga just for fun. I was just browsing through the shelves and saw this. Picked it up, googled the title and read the synopsis. It’s basically about this girl who has hearing problem, hence the title being ‘Koe no Katachi‘ or The Shape of Voice.

So this girl was bullied at school until one day she moved to another school. The boy who once bullied her, got bullied instead after she left. Years later, they met again…and we’ll see what happens ^^

It’s a slice of life with a bit of romance. It’s quite new, I think released just last year. It’s at Volume 3 now. I picked up the first volume to try.

DSC_0060 Teriyaki bento for dinner ^^DSC_0068

Some fruit and potato salad.DSC_0065

Visiting Isetan once in a while is fun.

Morning Musume – Chance! Aki Tour 2013 (summary) Part 2

I like MC sections! So this is a pretty long section where they chose a topic to talk about. So the topic chosen by Sayumi was “what incident occurred during the tour?” Basically every member had to tell a certain ‘incident’ that happened.

Sorry for being biased. Anyways, I find Erina’s quite fun. Even though her ‘incident’ was just being Suberi or ‘failed’, she did her signature cheer move and the fans did the same! It was fun to watch xD She shouted ‘Saikou…dazeee!!!!” Which was quite kakkoi if you ask me haha…

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Then…when it came to Ayumin, somehow the fans was like “oohhhh!!!!!” they cheered so loud anticipating her ‘incident’.

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I had to screenshot these. During the cheer…I couldn’t help but notice that Riho already burst out laughing because everyone knows Ayumin has this suberi character too like Erina, so whatever the answer was, it was going to fail miserably.

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Apparently, her ‘incident’ was just how she called Erina by her surname only without –san. Basically it’s considered not polite to call names without adding –san or –kun behind so I guess…something must have happened that she called Erina by her surname, Ikuta like that. Yeah…another failed or underwhelming response as expected by Suberi Conbi xD

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They definitely lived up to their names lol

Riho’s ‘incident’ was how she forgot to close her zipper for the second time.She revealed that during the previous concert, wearing the same outfit, her zipper was open without her realizing it until the end. Naturally, everyone was shocked.

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Then everyone was curious whether right there and then, did she check whether her zipper was open or not? LOL that was hilarious when Leader Sayumi wanted to check also. Pervert leader ^^

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So then Riho said she’ll just show it to all lol…

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Safe….

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There were two guests in this concert, Juice=Juice and S/mileage. Both are under H!P as well and considered the younger groups. Anyways, I’ll skip their performance because I want to focus on Momusu itself.

The Peace!

The updated version’s intro was great. They brought out the Kenshuusei and both guest groups to perform so it felt much merrier.

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The uh…Captain America outfit?

YES!

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They did this sequence thingy…which was pretty cool! It’d be nicer with gif though…then you can see how it moves from one end to the other xD 11

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I just realized as I capture images from this performance that there were so many stuffs to screencap! It was a fun song ^^1-tile

Let me call Captain America!3

captA-at-momusu-budokan_zps1885a5a1credit to original person who PS this

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Riho..Y U so excited???

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SayuMaa moment ^^

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Sayu…you’re blocking her face! hahahaha

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Nahhh Maachan doesn’t mind these stuffs…as long as she gets to mingle with senpai xD12

Then they walked happily back to formation xD

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After that, a long medley was performed.

Souda! We’re ALIVE (updated)2

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SONGS
Ayumin had an intro solo dance here…so graceful ^^

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Fans were calling her name here and she smiled haha

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I’m happy she got a solo dance in this concert, instead of Riho. Well, Riho’s too busy with her solo lines so this is a good balance at least.

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Nanchatte Renai – Sukida na Kimi ga (Sayumi/Mizuki)

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I find this short move very funny…uh…they moved their butt from left to right xD

Cute song…I should find the original.

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SEXY BOY

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Take off is now! (Riho/Ayumi/Sakura)

Yay for this trio!

1 Dance heavy song…2

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Riho & Sakura….where…

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are you….touching….

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Shouganai – Tokimeku tokimeke

Sakura’s intro line for Shouganai was flawless by the way…I’m pretty sure she can surpass Riho very soon in vocals department.

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Dokkan Capricio was the last song for the medley…but it felt too short. Oh well, it was a great medley by the way. Great choice of songs.

One Two Three (updated)

Now the crowd’s more pumped than everrrr….this song is awesome live.

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Brainstorming

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Erina’s…..muscle….girl can do one-hand flip…3

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Wagamama Ki no Mama Ai no Joke

Seeing those sweat …made me feel exhausted for them I don’t know why…

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What is LOVE?

This performance was filmed for the music video by the way…and I prefer this version than the MV itself.

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MC – a little touching moment when Sayumi mentioned that it was her first time having no senpai/same gen with her in a tour…and she was worried how it will go…however, it was fine. Then she said it was because of her kouhais’ support. Awww…

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Forgive me…I’m a biased Ayumi fan ^^23

Well…every member talked a bit here…

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OK YEAH! was the final song…everybody came out again – Kenshuusei and guests

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Overall, if there’s anything I’d complain about this is the camera editing. Some angles weren’t strategic and they missed out some actions…also, because most of the songs are now EDM influenced, it doesn’t feel very ‘live’ as compared to the previous concerts. The solos were 100% live of course…it’s when they sing together that they need to think about. But I think it has to do with the sound engineering for this concert.

Anyways, this is such a great concert. The setlist was perfect. I love every song, need to find the original versions of some as well. It was just filled with energy! These girls…I gotta give it to them. That stamina!

That said, I’m satisfied xD Also, they proved that they can take on Budoukan. And it was such an amazing atmosphere to watch the fans being so supportive. I hope they aim for bigger venues this year. Or…returning to Budoukan will be nice too.

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Morning Musume – Chance! Aki Tour 2013 (summary) Part 1

This came late. I had a pretty busy week…colloquium just ended. Pheww…huge relief it went quite smoothly. So now that I have some free time during the weekend, I’ll post a review of this CHANCE! Aki Tour 2013 at Budoukan by Morning Musume.

Actually taking screenshots is a pain. I don’t know why if I use Media Player Classic to play the DVD, the quality is just not as clear as using WMP. I had to print screen and paste on Paint for screenshot if I use WMP. I’m such a noob and I don’t know any other easier way >.>

But I will take as much screenshots as I can anyway >.<

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Let’s see…They kicked off with Wakuteka Chance! which was quite an old single but because it’s got Chance! in the lyrics..and since this tour is named as such, it’s only appropriate. I still shudder as I watched the first costume they wore. The trump cards’ costume was…not tragic but not exactly attractive. Although it was a nice touch to put numbers on the members according to their generation (oldest – youngest), I still find it bit childish. It’s not exactly cool.

But! it was only for the intro really. After the VTR they changed to the red outfits which was one of my favs. Ai no Gundan which made me a fan last year, was second.

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Wolf Boy was next. This song was in included in the The Best (Updated) album. Some wolf references on screen and they girls used claw-like dance for the song. Not my cup of tea but it was okay I guess. I’m glad they performed this song though ^^

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Whoever edited this concert, ruined the dance battle sequence between Kudo and Erina. Erina did a friggin’ FLIP on stage and they zoomed out…that was like &%$%@*$%*$*)(!@#! you know? How could they not show her do the flip closer? Bad editing.

2-tile  After Wolf Boy-Moonlight Night- The Manpower medley which was executed very well imho, they proceeded with second MC. By the way, they changed another outfit, or rather…stripped down to the yellow/black ones below. So basically, the girls wore the cards outfit, underneath was the red outfit, and underneath all that, was the yellow/black ones.

I’m not fond of the yellow/black outfit. From far, they look like they were wearing bikini >.> I know those are shorts too. Maybe it’s just me, I don’t feel very comfortable, watching 14-17 year olds wearing these onstage. It’s weird. But fans told me that this kind of outfit is very common in H!P groups. In almost every concert, there’s bound to be an outfit like that. So I guess they’re used to it.

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Moving on…they performed another two songs before another MC. By now, there were some girls with very very obvious sweat all over already namely…Kudo, Mizuki and to some extent, Riho and Sakura. I find these two perspire a lot compared to the others. Well…the dance routine’s level has increased a lot so that was bound to happen.

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Sayumi did MC for a while as the other members changed. She thanked fans for coming and their continuous support. She was grateful for the 3rd consecutive #1 Oricon Weekly Singles, and said it had been a great year…except for the ‘kouhaku‘ incident. But either way, she’s determined to move forward with the group. She talked a bit about birthdays and such..and then gave way to the next performance - I Wish.

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I love this song and performance in particular because all the new members performed this. Lovely. All of them did a great job.

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Budoukan is definitely magnificent. It’s a good start of course. Hopefully, they can go for bigger venues like Yokohama Arena or even better, Saitama Super Arena. That’ll be an amazing view. I’m sure they can aim for bigger concerts next with the steady success so far.

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Sayumi appeared next to sing two songs – Aruiteru (Updated) and LaLaLa no PiPiPi. Both are her solo tracks. I think it was nice to have her perform alone, Leader needs to shine hahaha…even though hervocals might be autotuned. I like these songs though.

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Sea of pink for Sayumi haha…her member colour is pink.

She seldom does her signature pose anymore but her famous Usagi Peace was a delight to see haha…

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Next! Everyone came back for Renai Hunter (Updated).

I still can’t get over how weird the dance moves for this song is lol…those pinchers?

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I’ll continue in the next part…need to take a break from screenshot >.<

SafetySuit

It’s not a safe suit, it’s not a fireman suit, whatever suit you can think of. It’s a BAND>

I can’t believe I never knew this band existed until about 8 months ago. Literally. I was completely blown away by this song, Anywhere But Here. But then, I kind of just stopped right there and never dig their albums.

Then last night, I decided to check out more. They released their debut album, Life Left To Go  in 2008. And they only released another in 2012, These Times.

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This video made me tear up for obvious reasons. Just watch.

I love their musical style. Their rock ballads are especially worth listening.The guitar riffs are so addictive and just brings out the emotion. Having listened to both albums last night, I have to say their debut, Life Left To Go, was definitely much stronger and unique. It is less pop and less refined too which makes it more raw. I have less tracks that I like from These Times but it’s still a good one.

This song, Never Stop was originally a rock song. They re-recorded a Wedding Version (acoustic-ish) for their Hallelujah EP in 2012.

Yeah, this band will definitely be under my radar. They’re going to release 3rd album this year. Can’t wait!

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Morning Musume ’14 – Password is 0 (Review)

This single is a double A-side single Toki wo Koe Sora wo Koe/Password is 0. Password is the au mobile company collaboration campaign song. So I suppose this song will be heard all over Japan since au is pretty much a huge mobile company in Japan. The group also made quite a few CMs which you can watch on the official au youtube channel. Two comedians called Morisanchu joins the group to form ‘Morimusu’ and I see it as a brilliant move. It’ll definitely bring exposure to ordinary people in Japan, like I said, I predict year 2014 to be huge for MM ’14. It will not be AKB huge, but they will climb up steadily with increasing sales. They’re reaching 160k sales for the last two singles so I hope this, especially with the CM-tie with au mobile, and the gorgeous TokiSora, will help them reach closer towards 200k. I’m already doing my part by getting two copies of this ^^

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Now I heard Password is 0 quite a while back, it was first in the au CM as background music. We knew it will be the usual EDM style. Then I heard the preview and since then the line ‘zero, zero, zero..password is 0’ has been pretty much stuck in my head. Tsunku has a way to make catchy music like this.

Since the MV is finally out, let’s take a look. At first glance, it is nothing like TokiSora. Actually, if you put them together, the video for TokiSora just looks miles better in terms of production and graphics. But we have to realize that TokiSora is not a dance type of song, therefore, they couldn’t make a video with them only dancing like Password. Being a mid-tempo/ballad as well, they chose to rely on CG or graphics to enhance TokiSora. It worked, magnificently too I’ll add. People were generally stunned by the outcome of TokiSora (which I reviewed a few posts back). Including me. It actually made me like the song better.

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Password on the other hand, is a complete opposite to TokiSora. With the dance influence, they repeated the same formula – indoor setting, dance, minimal background, the usual close-up shots and the only addition this time, were the effects seen all over the video.

Remember Matrix?

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Some fans were turned off by the green and red wordings that flashed across the screen. I am not bothered. I actually like it. But I can understand if they were distracting the fans from seeing what was supposed to be the main purpose – the members for example. In some cases, the wordings blocked/masked the views of some members. I believe it was on purpose. Basically, it’s the point.
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Song – It’s catchy I mean, if that zero, zero, zero, password is 0 line doesn’t get stuck in your head…You might need to get it checked. *jokes aside* The robotic man-voice made it interesting, although at the same time, I want the song to be less EDM. Vocal distortions can sometimes be welcomed but it can also be annoying. In this case, I don’t hate it, or like it either. It gives me a mixed feeling. But when it says “I feel low” that was kind of cool lol I don’t know why. The chorus is not as memorable like One Two Three, actually…it’ll take quite a song to top that. One Two Three was really something. I also like What is Love more than this. However, this song has its own style and I feel the girls sang it well. Except…if you listen to Riho’s line, which was supposed to be in English “what goes around, comes around” it is incomprehensible. I didn’t even know she sang English until I saw the lyrics! Well, her English is not best among the girls, but I know Oda Sakura can speak it better (native-like). So it made me wonder why that line was given to Riho, why not Sakura? The thing with line distributions >.>

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Dance – I’m still waiting for the dance shot version. I know I’ll prefer that over this. In this music video, the dance wasn’t showcased very well. First of all, my complaint was how they shot the intro dance. That intro dance is my favorite part of the song, they danced in sync together and so I was hoping the camera can capture them in wider angle. However, they chose closer shots which defeated the purpose of watching them dance in sync together. The tilting head action was great imo. What a waste. But it’s nice they captured the 0 formation when the girls jumped into the air. I feel this action is tiring. It’s not much but they have to leap up quite a lot, need lots of stamina for this. I also like the part right before chorus, where they grouped together, moved slowly from the left to right.Password is 0.mp4_snapshot_02.41_[2014.04.04_09.43.26]

I like the electrical wave xDPassword is 0.mp4_snapshot_02.46_[2014.04.04_09.43.44]

 

Costume is awesome. Just look at how much they sparkle! Different designs for each member.Password is 0.mp4_snapshot_02.53_[2014.04.04_09.44.04]

Riho gets a lot of screentime. Expected since she’s the Ace and lead singer. At least, she worked the video so that’s fine.

But NOBODY works the video better than Leader Sayumi!!!

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Actually, I’m surprised Sayumi gets quite little screentime for this song. The focus is definitely geared towards Riho. However, Sayumi, as expected, made use of the little time she had and worked it so much better than Riho imo. Her expressions…the best in the group.

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The break dance – I’m glad Ayumin gets center for this. Alongside Riho an Sakura. Ayumin almost never missed the break dance part. She’s always chosen with Riho. Because both are the best dancers in current MM.

So hard to take screenshots for the break dance, it’s so fast *_*Password is 0.mp4_snapshot_03.46_[2014.04.04_09.47.01]

The three doing their thing in front while the rest did theirs at the back.Password is 0.mp4_snapshot_03.46_[2014.04.04_09.47.06]

Too fast.Password is 0.mp4_snapshot_03.48_[2014.04.04_09.47.18] Can’t capture anything…but this smile haha

Password is 0.mp4_snapshot_03.49_[2014.04.04_12.05.21] Password is 0.mp4_snapshot_04.32_[2014.04.04_11.19.59] Password is 0.mp4_snapshot_04.36_[2014.04.04_11.20.19]The end.

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Looking back, this video is pretty good despite how they shot some parts.

More screenshots. Customary members’ close-ups. I realized if you slow down the video a bit, you can get decent shots of the members…

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Caught some of my fav Ayumin too lol (with slow down)

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Work that smile!

Suberi conbi hahahahha

For those who don’t know, Erina and Ayumin are called Suberi conbi because they always fail in their jokes.

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Okay, I think that’s it. I will look forward to see this being performed live ^^

JPOP update

I haven’t received my copy of Chance! yet. It’s been 10 days since shipment. Yesasia is rarely this late. Anyways, I’ve sent an email to ask so hoping for a reply later today or tomorrow. I hope it didn’t get lost on its way though.

Other news update. SCANDAL, a Japanese female band will be releasing a new single later this month. It’s a week after Momusu’s new single. I pre-ordered both. Actually two copies of Momusu’s and a regular for SCANDAL’s. I got two copies of Momusu’s because – Limited Edition Type B gives me the music video for Password is 0 which you can watch below. I also got a Regular B because I want the random members photo. I love their outfit for this. Here’s an example for Sayumi and Ayumin’s.

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They’ve been going for the cool image for a while now ever since Tsunku produces EDM music. But this costume is one of the best in a while. I like how it sparkles *_* Well aside from the great outfit, I just want to support them when I can afford it. This single has solid songs and contrasting so it actually complement each other well.

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TokiSora is the mid-tempo/ballad type while Password is 0 is fast-paced EDM. It doesn’t quite win over Wagamama or One Two Three for me but  I have to admit, the ‘zero, zero, zero…password is 0‘ line is very catchy and it gets stuck in my head for days. I’ll post a MV review later.

Back to SCANDAL, this single is somewhat special. Both songs were composed by themselves. Departure was composed by Mami (guitarist) and written by the girls. Rainy, the coupling song was written by Rina (drummer) and composed by the girls. I’m glad they use their free time to make songs.

I hope they continue this because they’ve proven they have the knack for it. Doing so also makes them grow as a band. I’m looking forward to more self-written or composed songs by these girls.

Promo pics and covers for the single

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I also found that Gotchi from Asian KungFu Generation is releasing his own new album soon. He’s the lead singer of AKFG. There’s a preview for the album below. I like some but nothing really catches my attention. To be honest, I am craving for a new AKFG single. It’s been ages since they released anything new T.T His stuffs don’t sound heavy rock at all. I miss the band’s alternative sound.

This is a random find. Vampillia is an experimental orchestra band…well, if you don’t get it, have a listen below. I actually quite like what I hear. It’s different. In fact, it’s so diverse and varied that you’d think it consists of several songs mashed up together. I thought it was a preview for an album at first. Then I realized, it’s one whole song. This one features idol group, BiS. I don’t know this group though I’ve heard their name. Anyways, this is good. That sudden change to rock tune is…surprising but very fitting.