Little bit of a rush job this week, as I’ve got lots of other work to get done and this week’s lineup inspires nothing but tepidness in my heart. So…these lil’ snarky reviews might be extra lil’ this week. Just remember…you can be doing all sorts of cool stuff instead of listening to these songs or reading some blogger bash them!
AKB48 “Everyday カチューシャ”
The video for this, the newest single from Japan’s greatest gift to world, features two classic pop fall-backs when the song itself isn’t anything worth putting on a postcard – high school drama between girls and gratuitous bikini shots. Appropriate, because this song comes off as especially uneventful for an outfit prone to releasing really bland music. By now, talking about AKB48 as a cultural institution easily laps talking about AKB48’s music, and “Everyday” adds nothing to the pop discussion but plenty to the other side! Like…have AKB48 gone meta with that keyhole scene, now fully aware of the large creepster demographic scooping up their magazines? Or did they naively go “hey, people really like staring at us through small holes, we should use that more” and turn it into a trademark? I don’t know, but pondering about stupid cosmetic details sure seems more productive than this song.
Hiroshi Tamaki “FREE”
For a tiny, tiny bit at the start of “FREE,” it sounds like this will be the J-Rock take on Creed’s “Higher.” Boy, was I let down with what came next.
I mean, it’s not BAD in any aggressive sort of way. Just really boring. This probably could be chalked up to Hiroshi Tamaki focusing mainly on TV and film appearances, his music career less a devotion to art and more of a means to make jacuzzi payments. Whatever the reason, this is basically generic J-Pop fluff paired up with “chuggin'” guitars in a sorry attempt to Jose Canseco “FREE.” Should have stuck with the Creed sound.
I really don’t think this is the proper version of TOKIO’s “見上げた流星.” I’m mostly being tipped off by the total lack of TOKIO in the above clip. Though if it is the proper single…good direction!
NERDHEAD Featuring Mai. K “どうして好きなんだろう”
Sweet seven-minute video.
What a waste of a goofy name. You hear something like “NERDHEAD” and your expecting a chiptune rendition of OK Computer, or at least goofy J-Reggae. Nope…NERDHEAD sings vanilla ballads chock full of piano and fairy dust, the sort of thing WAY TOO MANY OTHER FEMALE (AND MALE!) J-POP PEOPLE BELT OUT. Which, whatever, sure it sells, but why call yourself NERDHEAD? The more normally named Mai. K stops by to rap a bit, but that doesn’t even drum up any The Room-like cheese to make this so-bad-it’s-good. Just…bad balladry. The movie clip at the end looks kinda cool though!
I respect the video for this song so much I’m not even going to bother explaining the actual music. Puppets always make for quality entertainment, as that new Muppets’ trailer proves.
Winner Of The Week – Unicorn has the catchiest and least offensive song of the lot. Plus puppets.