Saturday, August 20, 2016

Reaching the Dream: C-ute to Disband on 2017

The scariest day of a C-ute fan has come.

C-UTE OFFICIALLY ANNOUNCED THAT THEY WILL DISBAND ON JUNE 2017 AT THE SAITAMA SUPER ARENA. 


Earlier this year, C-ute's youngest member, Hagiwara Mai, has turned 20 years old. So they have started a discussion considering of what they will do in the future.

C-ute will no longer participate on H!P activities/concerts starting January 2017, which means H!P summer tour 2016 will be their last one.


Accordingly, there were 3 options, and they chose to end C-ute and reach their own dreams after.
Yajima Maimi will become an actress, Nakajima Saki will be a travel reporter, Suzuki Airi will be a newscaster or a versatile actress, Okai Chisato to continue on doing variety shows and Hagiwara Mai to enter the fashion (apparel) industry.

Though they have been in the idol world for quite a long time, hearing this news saddened and broke C-ute fans heart.

As a C-ute fan myself, it really broke my heart after knowing their decision on disbanding. They are the first group to introduce me to Hello!Project and I've been following the group (as well as H!P) for 7 years.

But since this is C-ute greatest dream, to perform on the stage of Saitama Super Arena, then let us support them from the bottom of heart.

 There will still be like 10 months before they break up, so let us do our best to give our support and express our love for C-ute.

We will announce our graduation tribute plan soon! Keep in touch everyone!

READ UP-FRONT LINK ANNOUNCEMENT REGARDING C-UTE'S BREAK-UP

Wednesday, June 1, 2016

Tamura Meimi & Suzuki Kanon has Officially Graduated from Hello!Project!


Tamura Meimi from ANGERME and Suzuki Kanon from Morning Musume'16 has officially graduated from Hello!Project!

It must have been tough seeing 2 consecutive days of graduations (T___T)
But seeing these two girls from the very start is wonderful.

We've been witnessing their idol life from the very start; how they auditioned, how they developed their skills, and become a beautiful flower of the idol world.

For the past few years since they joined the H!P family, it's been fun to see them perform, and smile for all the fans in the world. Now that they've set to reach another dream, they have to leave and graduate from their group.

Yet, part of their dream is to make the people in this world smile and be happy.

CONGRATULATIONS MEIMI AND ZUKKI!
We will always support both of you as you step on the next path you will take!
We love you and gambatte! \(^o^)/

To end this post, we would like to present the graduation tribute made by fans all over the world for Meimi and Zukki! Enjoy watching!

Friday, May 6, 2016

SAYASHI RIHO GRADUATION TRIBUTE RELEASED!

Hey everyone! How you doing?
We deeply apologize for the super duper delay in releasing our Sayashi Riho Graduation tribute :(
There has been some difficulties, but fortunately, we finished it! YAAY~!

Sayashi Riho, one of the 9th generation members, graduated from Morning Musume'16 to pursue her love in dancing and also learn the language of English. Good thing is she's still considered as a Hello!Project member. This tribute video shows the love, gratitude and support for our beloved Riho-chan as she pursue her dreams.

We hope you like it, and thank you very much for everyone who joined :)


LET US KEEP ON SUPPORTING RIHO!

Tuesday, March 1, 2016

[SINGLE REVIEW] Kobushi Factory - Sakura Night Fever / Chotto Guchoku ni! Chototsu Moushin / Osu! Kobushi Tamashii

Hello, everyone! Calli here!

As you all know, Kobushi Factory is my favorite group (and musical artist) in the world, but I'm going to leave all my subjectivity (or most of it) at the door right about...now.

Well then, let's get straight into this review.

Also, since all the MVs have been released, I'll be linking those instead of pasting the single covers. And remember, these are song reviews, not MV reviews. That's just my style. I'm not very good at reviewing visuals.

1. Sakura Night Fever



Oh, what a wonderful time. Springtime has come.

This is the time where almost worldwide, cherry blossoms, known as "桜” in Japan (phonetic: さくら), bloom gracefully.

Hello! Project has experimented with the cherry blossom theme a bit already.

In fact, a Morning Musume unit named Morning Musume Sakuragumi was created with inspiration of cherry blossoms back in 2003.

While Sakuragumi had more mellow, traditional Japanese-inspired music, Hello! Project have given Kobushi Factory a more lighthearted pop tune about spring, and it is somewhat of a springtime carol.

The lyrics to the song are nothing short of adorable, talking about holidays, springtime festivities, getting drunken, and encountering new friendships and love.

My favorite lyric of this song has to be Hamaura Ayano's spoken "桜もこぶしも咲き誇れ!” (Cherry blossoms and Kobushi [Factory] are both in full bloom!) It adds much enthusiasm.

Another favorite part is Inoue Rei's "なぜになぜ?!” (Why? Why?). There's obviously not much to the lyrics there, but alas it's the way the line is sung that I adore. It's sung operatically, ridiculously, and most likely meaning to mimic some sort of traditional Japanese singing style.

The song maintains a steady groove pattern with just a hint of that Kobushi Factory guitar. The song transitions incredibly well from one point to the next, with surprises and fun around every corner. 

Near the end of the song, the composition is begging for every wota to jump in their homes. The words "FEVER! FEVER!" are repeated and soon enough, you can hear "Oi! Oi!"s of wota that were added in, begging the crowd to wotagei along. This was a smart move, as that will make this song very marketable in concerts.

The song finishes off quite adorably with Taguchi Natsumi's lulled "夜は眠りたい〜” (We want to sleep at night) as the music slowly fades out.

Song Rating: 9/10


2. Chotto Guchoku ni! Chototsu Moushin


If you are looking for tongue rolling, growling, high notes, and power, this song is the way to go. 

This song has a catchy hook, with the word "ちょっと!” repeated several times. Each girl also has her own little "ちょっと!”, which I enjoy hearing because each girl sounds quite different doing it.

This song is much more dialed up funk than "Sakura Night Fever," with a more harsh-sounding funk rather than a jolly, poppy funk.

Think of Morning Musume '15's "Sukatto My Heart" instrumental design, but more complex and intense.

As for the vocals, even though I believe Inoue Rei has the most rich and complex vocals in Kobushi Factory, Hirose Ayaka definitely has the most stability and range, and it shows.

In addition, although she didn't have the most difficult parts in the song, Nomura Minami's voice sounded very pleasing, with a tinge of vibrato added to her parts. Although Nomura is not much of a belter, she does have a very impressive voice indeed.

Fujii Rio and Wada Sakurako both have deeper husky voices, while Ogawa Rena and Taguchi Natsumi both have cuter husky voices. However, all the different voice types work very harmoniously in this song.

As much as I do adore Inoue's voice, I think it would have been a better choice to switch her part division with Hirose's, as Hirose can handle longer notes and belting much easier.

As for the lyrics of the song, they hold the common Kobushi Factory song theme of going through life honestly and confidently, and always remembering your resolutions.

If there is one thing that Kobushi does best in their songs, it would be energy and power.

Song Rating: 7/10

3. Osu! Kobushi Tamashii



This is another song with the Kobushi Life Message, as I may call it from now on.

This song is actually quite simple, and I most likely won't have much to say about it.

However, this song is very pleasing to the ears.

I do feel this song is much more vocal-friendly than "Chotto!". In fact, this song is pretty easy to sing. 

In this composition, there is still a bit of tongue-rolling and high notes, but nowhere near as much as in "Chotto!" This song was obviously geared more toward showcasing the individual members.

My preferred vocals in this song have to go to Fujii Rio, and no, not because she is my favorite idol and celebrity in the world. It's because she sounds really crisp, and her personality (apparent even with her vocals) really fits well with the song.

I have to say, Kobushi Factory's personalities shine through a lot in their singing. It's amazing, because I can't think of many other groups who can do that at all.

This song is definitely the most Kobushi-driven out of the three, as in it was a song clearly geared for just them.

Although the weakest in the single (in my opinion), it definitely has its charms.

Song Rating: 6/10


-----------------

SINGLE RATING (determined mathematically by average of song ratings, not by opinion): 7.3/10
Do I agree with this rating?: Yes. Although it wasn't as strong as their major debut in my opinion, it was still a strong single and I love Kobushi to death. Rather than this single having many faults, it was just some sort of a lack in the latter two songs of the single. However, I still thoroughly enjoy this single very much.

-----------------

Well, I hope you all enjoyed this review very much. Until next time.

Calli, out!


Sunday, February 21, 2016

[GRADUATION TRIBUTE PLAN] MM'16 Suzuki Kanon & ANGERME Tamura Meimi


Zukki and Meimi will be graduating from their group and H!P at the end of May this year.

So it's time to announce our tribute plan!

Monday, January 25, 2016

[Concert Review] Morning Musume PRISM 7th of December

Good Day everyone.
Time for the last concert review of this trip.

Morning Musume PRISM concert.


December 7th, my last day of the trip, and I really looked forward to it.
I came there around noon, and it was really warm there, (well, for northen people like me anyway), so while the japanese fans wore jackets and such, I wore only "spring clothes". After standing in queue for around 2½ hour I could finally start to see the goods tent, and I was stupid and hurt my foot while just standing up (haha), it took my 3 hours, from getting there to getting my goods.
Then I met up with one of my friends that I met the day before at the ANGERME handshake event, and hung out with him and his friends until the doors opened, then we decided to meet up afterwards too.

The concert, OMG, it was so lovely and so sad.
It was the first Budokan concert with Morning Musume for me, and like ANGERME budokan, I had arena seat, not as great as ANGERME but still.

The setlist was wonderful, and yet so sad, since it was the final days of Sayashi Riho MM days.
It was the first time for me hearing certain songs live, so I was really happy,
I also managed to catch a few of the things that got thrown out from the roof (a great reason to get a arena seat xD)
The one song I really hoped to hear, was Dokkan Capriccio, so even if it was just a part of the medley, I was really happy.

Only thing I had against was the fire, god it was so warm, that if I hadnt been drinking something before, I would probably have fainted (I sure hope no-one did)

I still have hard to believe I was there, and everything.
But, it is worth it, and you should try to travel to Japan, and attend concerts, checkis and whatever more is possible.
It will be a lifetime memory.

10/10

Next concert review, will be - I don't know, haha, I will travel to Japan in end of May, and I know for a fact I'll attend Tamura Meimi graduation concert, and that one might be the first one or the last or the only one for that trip, we'll see.

Love~
Risa

Thursday, December 31, 2015

The Official Sayashi Riho Graduation Post

(Originally, this was going to be a "Tsumetai Kaze to Kataomoi / ENDLESS SKY / One and Only" single review, but then I realized I had much more to say about the graduation itself."

Hello, everyone! It's Calli here!

In just some hours, Miss Sayashi Riho is going to graduate from Morning Musume '15.

When Riho joined in 2011, she had stated that she wanted to be leader someday.

But here is the thing: people change. I'm sure she realized her true passions, and being an idol just wasn't allowing her true artistry to shine through, even if she was the center of her respective group.

She didn't look happy anymore, we all saw it on her face.

But for her time in the group, I have to admit, she was a blessing to Morning Musume.

I didn't like her initially, but as her graduation was announced, I had that sinking feeling that the group would be somehow incomplete without her.

It was a much different situation from Sayu, whose time was definitely up, but many people feel like Riho really didn't serve her full time in Morning Musume. Likewise, she didn't even want a proper graduation concert for herself.

It's a bittersweet goodbye, sweet because I look forward to seeing how Morning Musume '16 shapes up, but bitter because a beloved member is leaving the group.

I really surprised myself earlier. I was watching all the MVs from her graduation single, and when "ENDLESS SKY"'s MV came on, it really made me cry hard.

It made me realize that even though Morning Musume is a constantly changing group, when just one member leaves, it leaves a little wound in the group's history. The wound gets better, but never completely heals. It leaves a little scar behind of the past, but over time, the group finds its way with maturity and new members combined.

And it made me realize that for Morning Musume, no matter which member leaves, it would all affect me equally.

Riho doesn't try to fake with other people, she does her own thing. And we know her passion is dancing.

I think it's so sweet that she's staying in Hello! Project. It shows that her love for the company itself hasn't faded, but rather she wants to simply move on from being an idol.

Since she is studying English, it would be really nice if she came to America and went to a professional dance school here as well, maybe in a place like New York.

I look very forward to seeing her future endeavors. She is a beautiful, interesting girl, and she definitely won't be forgotten.

As for Morning Musume '16:

"It starts now! It starts now!"

-Calli


Wednesday, December 23, 2015

Hello! Project Fan Vote 2015 Part 2


here's part 2 of the fan vote! This covers the other cateories included in the poll. 

Tuesday, December 22, 2015

Hello! Project Fan Vote 2015 Results! PART 1


You all have voted for your favorites in Hello! Project and now all votes among fans all around the world had been tallied!!!

Are you excited to find out which of the girls have reigned supreme above the rest? Will the addition of new groups stir up the rankings? Find out for yourself!
****drum roll****

[Concert Review] Tamura Meimi birthday event 3rd of December

Good Day everyone.
Todays review is about Tamura Meimi birthday event.

Meimi poster from the event

As you all might know, it is not everyone that is allowed to attend birthday events.
You need to be a Hello!Project (or M-line) fanclub member.

And I am suprised how short it was.
The event was less than 1 hour in total.

Before the concert, I met up with my friend, and some guys I met at ANGERME budokan concert.
And some people was handing out this penlights that we used when Meimi came on stage.

Then it was some talking, and showing when Meimi was a baby up to ~2-3 years old.. Oh she was so cute when she was a baby.

Setlist:

She started with an old song from Matsuura Aya called Watashi no Sugoi Houhou. A song I never heard off, but Meimei sang it perfect.
What to expect when she is an amazing singer, she can sing in all different styles.
And after that it was the talking section, she was really happy and suprised about the glowsticks.
After the talking section, she continued the songs, starting with:
Kiss!Kiss!Kiss by Buono
Which she owned as expected, I don't think there is one song she can't sing, but ye I haven't heard her sing all songs in the world *hihi*
Hajimete wo Keikenchuu by Juice=Juice
Number 4 of the songs was performence varies, but on the event I was on she sang a song by Teresa Teng called Wakare no Yokan (and event 2 was KoiING by Morning Musume) and wow, she really nailed it.
I got goosebumps of her singing it, I don't know why since I never heard it before but wow!
Then came Oujisama to Yuki no Yoru by Tanpopo, oh she looked so happy singing it.
Last but not least Never Forget by Morning Musume. I was a bit suprised over the song choice since it is known as a graduation song. But it is a lovely song anyway, and I am glad to have heard her sing it.

After the event was over, it was wave goodbye to her when we walked out, and wow she looked suprise to see me and my friend (foreigners, even if my friend lives in japan)

If possible, get a fanclub membership and try to attend a birthday event by any member, you wont be disappointed.

10/10

Note:
When I am writing this, Meimi have announced her graduation from Hello!Projet and ANGERME.
I am a bit sad over it, but thanks to that I am extra happy that I attended her birthday event.
So, please if you have the chance to attend your kamioshi's birthday event, don't rethink, do it.
You will regret it otherwise.


Love~
Risa

Monday, December 14, 2015

[Concert Review] Juice=Juice 30th of November 2015

Good Morning Everyone.

Finally I am awake in my mind after my trip to Japan. So now I can continue with the reviews.
Starting with my 3rd concert I attended.
Juice=Juice

It was my first ever live house concert.
For those who don't know what live house concert is, it is where the audiance are close to the artist(s) and after the concert you get to shake the members hands.
There is a female section as well, which is awesome if you are a female, and especially if you are tall, since 90% of the girls are often short in Japan.
I got eyecontact with my favorite Kanazawa Tomoko thanks to that.

When it comes to the setlist.
It was awesome.
The opening act was Next You (if you don't know what Next you is, it is their alto ego for a drama they are staring in)

This was my first time at a Juice=Juice concert, so for me all the songs was awesome.
But the biggest surprise for me was that they performed Hatsukoi Cider (Buono! song)
And Karin blushed during one of the songs, trying to figure out which one, but I think it was Magic of Love, thanks to that all the others said "I love you" to her.

During one of the MCs we also sang Happy Birthday to Karin since it was her birthday on December 1st.

Photo taken by Up-front link (and Aika)

I can tell, that it was an awesome concert, and you really need to experience a live house concert.
Naruchika works too (it is also live house concert) because arena concert and live house concerts are two difference feelings.
And I am happy I have attended all kind of concerts.
And if you get the chance, to attend all kind of venues. You wont regret it at all.

Overall, the concert was awesome.
The setlist was awesome
The audience was awesome
Everything was awesome

10/10, worth going to!

Next up: Tamura Meimi birthday event!

Tuesday, December 1, 2015

[Concert review] ANGERME Fukuda Kanon graduation concert

This is the biggest concert review I write in a while.
Fukuda Kanon graduation concert.
Let's start with saying, I haven't been so stressed like I was that day.
Cheki with C-ute, Handshake with MM'15 (and I GOT LOST GETTING THERE!!!) and then the ANGERME concert.

Let me tell you, the line for the concert goods was LOOOOOOOOOONG, it's impossible to tell you guys how long, but those who attended Berryz Koubou final concert can imagine how long, because it was around the same like it. With most Kanyon stuff sold out (no suprise though) I stood in line before having to give up standing in line due to my back issue (I was in a carcrash last year, and still have issuses after that) so I gave money to a friend, and asked him to buy me some goods.

The doors opened at 5pm, and the queue was long even to get it, so me and a friend of mine decided to wait a while. I mean, we had our seats already decided, and why rush?
We went inside about 5.20-5.30pm and the opening acts (Tsubaki and Kobushi Factory) performed their songs around 5.45-5.50pm, and let me tell you. Tsubaki Factory is so much better than I thought, and ofcourse, no suprise, Kobushi Factory was great as always!

And after a few minutes after Kobushi Factory performed their song, ANGERME  came on stage, I had such a great seat that I could sit (resting my back) yet see them perfectly, so I could sit a few songs and stand a few songs, so I could attend without killing myself.

I have never seen such more beautiful concert, not that I have attended so many concerts with Hello!Project, but still.
I have attended 2 grad concerts, Berryz Koubou and Fukuda Kanons, Berryz Koubous was beautiful yes, but not in the same way that Kanyons was.
During her grad song, she had foam coming down from the ceiling, and it looked so lovely.
And it was also a special kind of graduation, she said her graduation message, but the other girls did not say a goodbye message, well unless you count their last MC as a grad message, because some of the girls said something regarding Kanyon during their speech.
You could think that since they had 6 months to prepare, it would be more a graduation ceremony than it was. It was sad that they didn't have a special ceremony for her, but I think it was good that they didn't because I would probably have cried then, weird enough, I have problem crying during graduations, I didn't cry during berryz graduation nor during Kanyons. Now some people may think "Yes, you did cry during berryz", well yes I did, but not during the sad parts, I cried in the beginning of the concert due to my back killed me, and I couldn't sit because then I couldn't see anything, before me and another one changed seats so I could sit during the concert and still see good.

Anyway, back to ANGERME concert, between opening act and ANGERME, the current acts and some former girls from Hello!Project came and sat where they normally sits during budokan concerts , in grouporder and member order, so we had C-ute in the first row, then it was MM'15 - J=J - CG - KF -TF. Maimi was missing from C-ute, so I was like: "Where is she!?" well we did get the answer later when she came on stage, should have understood that she was gonna come on stage, I mean she is the leader of Hello!Project an C-ute. We also had Captain, Chinami, Yurina and Miyabi (former Berryz Koubou), I think I could see Aika and some other girls, but I don't know, it was hard to see the girls behind berryz even with binoculars (Got to borrow from a wota, to see which girls it was sitting there) and it was great to see them all being there supporting Kanyon at her final concert.
During the first MC, we got to "meet" the new member, Kamiko-chan, and let me tell you, she is so cute in person as well, I can't wait to see her start her activites with ANGERME. And, we also got 2 sub-leaders (which made me think, it wont be long until Ayachoo graduates) and they are Nakanishi Kana and Takeuchi Akari. I think it is most likely Kana who will become the new leader after Ayaka graduates, even if Akari have been in Hello!Project longer, since they have been in ANGERME just as long both of them, but it might be Akari if it will be like when Mikitty (6th gen) became leader over Morning Musume before Takahasi Ai (5th gen) just because she had been in Hello!Project longer, we'll just have to see. And after the final song (Suki-chan) Kanyon came back on stage, to say a special thank you to all the fans.

The setlist was great, only thing of the concert, I missed was Sakitty and Yuuka making a special visit, but they attended the concert, that is was matter :)
The concert was 2½ hour long, started 6pm and ended 8.30pm (ish).

The photo is my view of the big stage, and from the subtage, I got eyecontact with Rikako, and it made me so happy :D
Concert? If I could, I would give it 100000000 of 10, but ye, 10 out of 10 easily! :)

[Concert Review] C-ute concert tour 2015 aki Can't stop Final

Hi everyone, Risa here!
As you all might know, I am currently in Japan, and I have gotten this special assignment to write concert reviews of the concerts I am attending. So lets start!

C-ute Can't Stop!
It's true, they are so awesome, and they are literally so awesome live.
It is hard to see them leaving soon, even though they are soon all over 20 years old (Mai turns 20 in february) which they all made fun off at one of the MCs, that she was the only one under 20.
I had a pretty good seat, first floor (they had only 2 floors) and well, I felt like a giant where I stood, because I had short girls beside me, infront of me and short guys behind me. I now how Yurina (former Berryz Koubou) felt when she stood next to Momoko.

The setlist was like it had been for the entire tour, except 2 songs, special for the final day was Jyounetsu Ecstasy (a Nakky center song) and for the final show (the evening one, that I attended) was Gamusha Life! So they performed 27 songs in total for that show.
The traniees wasn't at the concert, due to having the traniee concerts, so  they had some other girls instead being their backdancers. Which was a bit sad, because I would love to see the traniees too, see how those girls who was suppose to be the opening act was live, but oh well.

It was my first tour final ever that haven't been a graduation concert, and I loved it.
Only thing I didn't like was that during some of the songs, Mai had it difficult with her voice, it was really bad, especially during Iron Hearts, you could all hear it, and you could tell that she needs to get help regarding her voice now.

But over all, I give this concert, 10 out of 10, it was more than I expected, and I recommend you to see them at least once before they decide to go on hiatus.
It will be worth it, I promise you that.


Sunday, November 22, 2015

Poll Closed! Results are In!

Last week's poll, "Who is your Favorite Group in Hello!Project?", has been officially closed!
The winner is....

Wednesday, November 18, 2015

[SINGLE REVIEW] C-ute - Arigatou ~Mugen no Yell~ / Arashi wo Okosunda Exciting Fight!

Hi everyone.
We had Calli doing a review for ANGERME latest single.
Now its time for C-ute latest single Arigatou ~Mugen no Yell~ / Arashi wo Okosunda Exciting Fight!

First off.
C-ute have now been around 10 years, They have lost 3 members over the years, but I feel that this, this is C-ute.
Just the 5 of them, and they will go far.
This is their 28th single, since their major debut in 2007.
For this single they even had a LP released, with a 3rd track on it, Gamusha Life (acoustic version)
And I hope they will stay longer, and have more lovely songs to give us.
With that told.
Here comes the review


1. Arigatou ~Mugen no Yell~
When I first heard of the song, I was like: "No this is not my cup of tea", but then the Haro!Suto version came and I loved it.
It still gives me goosebumps just listen to it.
It have this calm, relaxing aura around it, showing hard work and that you should be proud of who you are.
They have the Japan wrestling team doing cameos in the song, as part of being the hymn song for the squad.
I never thought that a beautiful song like this could have such deep meaning in the song.
During the musicvideo we are allowed a insight of the wrestling teams training.
For me, this song means strength and power to stay strong.



2. Arashi wo Okosunda Exciting Fight!
This is the upbeat track of the single, and the cheer song for the wrestling team.
This I actually loved first time I heard it, no suprise since I love upbeat songs.
But even this song surprised me, when I saw the musicvideo.
The insight of the wrestling team is shown even here, but on this its more focus on the female wrestling team while in Arigatou ~Mugen no Yell~ they have the male wrestling team as well.
Even this song have a "Don't give up on yourself" feeling, which for me is wonderful, because sometimes, you need to have that feeling surrounding you.
I love the "fire" in C-utes colors.
Only thing I don't like with the musicvideo is the danceshot arena, I men, I feel they could picked a better place, especially since where they dance have nothing to do with the wrestling team at all.



Overall, its a great single, and I feel that the girls get stronger each single that they release.
The single have one slow and one upbeat song, so I feel that everyone can find their song of the single.
My favorite is ofcourse Arashi wo Okosunda Exciting Fight!
Which one are yours, and why is that song your favorite??
Let me know in the comments below, and I see you next time.

~Risa