Now that December is well and truly here and the Holidays are set to begin, I introduce to you all the final Music Selection post of 2016! As many of you know, when December comes around I become a lot busier with my posts, celebrating both the season of giving and the end of the year. This also means that, come January, I will most likely not be doing my Music or PV Selection for December, as I may have already listed such songs in my End of Year Top Songs of 20XX post.
So, for these past 11 months, thank you all for reading and supporting not only this series, but also my blog! I hope to see you all again with a new set of Music Selections in the New Year, and I hope you all anticipate the music that 2017 might bring just as much as I do!
For now, though, let's all enjoy the remaining shreds of music that 2016 has to offer! Are you ready to see what November has offered us before we let 2017 knock on our doors?
November has been a wonderful month for music and listening. It's one of those months where, surprisingly, my interest has lain almost solely in the singles and tunes that have been dished out from the month gone by. Of course I have swayed a bit and found other tunes to enjoy from the past, but honestly, a lot of my listening has been in my November pickings, and that does please me quite a bit.
Sad to say, however, that there are a lack of Christmas jingles! There are some, but honestly, not a whole lot. Dang!
Before I blabber on a bit more, let's take a look at and talk about the handful of songs I've enjoyed from Autumn's last moments, and bask in the glory of these Idols tunes. Are you ready to let November fade into December, yet? If not, let's enjoy these songs for as long as we can...
MELODY FLAG by Minase Inori (2016.11.09)
Though I like this entire single well enough, the one song from this release I have listened to on a loop multiple times over the course of the November month is definitely MELODY FLAG. Very much an Idol-Pop tune, MELODY FLAG is reminiscent of Minase's debut single sound, and brings forth the energy and passion I really enjoy from her.
Not for those who hate a sweet and high pitched voice, I can't deny that, while I do enjoy this song greatly, it can give me one cracker of a headache if I'm not careful. Still, it's a great song, and I think that Minase is a splendid singer whenever I listen to her. She definitely has presence and passion, and I love that. MELODY FLAG especially is a great song to listen to when feeling down, thanks to its positive vibe and the uplifting lilt in Minase's voice.
Again, this is a good single all around, but the third and final track that is MELODY FLAG is definitely my favourite, and the one I recommend to you all. Give it a whirl, and check out the single that is Starry Wish, too!
Singing ∼Ano Koro no You ni∼ by ℃-ute (2016.11.02)
This is definitely one of those 'inspiration' songs, and whilst this may technically be classed as the weakest song on the track list for ℃-ute's latest release, I think it is also one of the most beautiful and heartfelt. Where Mugen Climax has maturity and individuality, and Ai wa Maru de Seidenki has that element of fun and cuteness, Singing ∼Ano Koro no You ni∼ has an underlying power to it, as well as sentimentality. Of course, I happen to like those songs just as much as I do any other.
Plus, this kind of fits into the ballad category, at least to me. I freakin' love ballads.
I especially enjoy how this song seems to fit with ℃-ute's 'nostalgic' vibe they have been playing up to in some singles. With their impending graduation taking place next year, it seems obvious to include sentimental songs like this that play up to the nostalgia and current feelings of the group. That said, it does lead me to wonder what they will do for their actual departure single? After all, Singing ∼Ano Koro no You ni∼ does sound like a graduation song, in both lyrics and sound, and C-ute have at least one more single and feature album to dish out before they leave. So... what will they sing about, next? Will there be a reunion involved?
Gawd, let's hope so
I like this song. It's my favourite on the track list, and I love the sentimental vibes it brings. I just wish it didn't sound so much like it's their last hurrah, cause it isn't.
Ai wa Maru de Seidenki by ℃-ute (2016.11.02)
Okay, so this is one hell of a fun song, and I really love the energy and pacing of this piece. It plays up to that energetic, cute vibe of the group, whilst still keeping everything nicely balanced and not overly kiddish, so to speak. It's still mature in a way, but makes sure to let us know that, despite growing up, ℃-ute can still enjoy themselves and find joy in even the smallest things in life!
It's adorable, and it's so well done. The bubbly sound and ℃-ute's upbeat, vibrant personalities really show in this song, both on and off screen. You can tell they had a blast recording this, and I love that. I just wish Hello! Pro would do more songs like this for their other groups, because we have seen from both Utakata and this release that fun songs can be done well without having to be childish or overdone!
This is a great Autumn track, and definitely shows off just how strong a group ℃-ute are, and how they really aren't losing any stamina. Their presence is electrifying, and I am having a whale of a time with this song. I'm getting goosebumps, it's that good!
Akanesasu by Aimer (2016.11.16)
My original thoughts on this song were pretty much 'meh. I could pass on this'. My current thoughts on this single as a whole is this; "I really can't do without listening to this!". And that's the story of how much I seem to like this song, and its accompanying A-side track.
To be completely honest with you all, I really did not think much to Akanesasu when I first heard it. The only reason I gave it another chance was because I quite liked everlasting snow, so, when finally tuning into this once again... I liked it. And then I really liked it. And then I could not stop playing it on a loop, because holy shit, am I a sucker for this song now. It's freakin' gorgeous, and Aimer's voice is damn amazing.
There is a lot of emotion and power to Aimer's voice, and those husky vocals and seem to enhance the beauty of this song and how mesmirisng it can become if you listen to it enough. If you've yet to give it a chance, please do so, because Aimer is incredible, and Akanesasu sounds like a drama in musical form, if that makes any sense. It probably doesn't.
If you want more about the single in terms of why it's a good listen, take a look at the review I did for it on 走れ！Idol Manic!. Plug. Plug. PLUUUUUUG!
I really liked everlasting snow from the get-go. Big chance I liked it for the reason that it's a winter song, and I'm kind of into those during this time of the year. Also, the video was pretty damn sweet, and the emotion I felt throughout the song was very obvious and a little overwhelming. So, yeah; I liked the power this song had over me, and the season it represented so nicely in sound.
This is a cute, warm song, though it can get quite sentimental at times in its lyrics, too. It's a proper winter song as well, which I love. It has nostalgic elements in its instrumental, and it doesn't feel so 'modern', if you will. It feels like a true, true holiday track that you might have heard way back when, and it feels like it would fit perfectly with a Coca-Cola Christmas advertisement, or something for a supermarket... it's that type of winter song.
It's the type of song that makes you think 'Ah... it's Christmas.', and that's a pretty powerful thought to have when hearing a song. If it can make you think of a specific holiday, then it is doing its job as a seasonal piece pretty damn well.
If you are going to listen to either of Aimer's A-side tracks from her latest single release - and I do think you should consider both - then I urge you to probably listen to this one first. It's well done, it's fitting of the holiday season, and it brings warmth and nostalgia. What more could you ask for?
Plugging once again, I've already reviewed the single completely on 走れ！Idol Manic!, Go check it out!
SUMILE SMILE by Uchida Aya (2016.11.30)
Much like Sweet Sensation way back when, this is one of those songs that I have been anticipating like crazy in terms of its release, mostly because I could only listen to it on a loop in its short PV form. So, despite the fact this came out at the tail end of the month, I have still managed to listen to this one a crazy amount for a good chunk of November. Can ya blame me!?
For those unaware, Uchida Aya is the voice actress and singer for Love Live's Minami Kotori, and has a fair few other VA roles under her belt. Though I have yet to dive into her previous works, I am really enjoying SUMILE SMILE. It's cute, it's filled with helium and delight, and I really like the video. I mean, it's a bit too Spring for the Winter season, but, whatever. It's cute enough to catch my eye!
If you want something that sounds like Aya's been sucking on helium for about 20 years, have a bash at this song. It's adorable, and it's sure to make you smile! (Unless you have a headache, then PSA time; DON'T LISTEN TO THIS!)
That is one odd title for a song, but honestly, I don't care, because I like the song and how energetic is. It's the Ray I fell in love with in sound, and I am enjoying every moment of it! After the lack lustre a-gain happened, I really was not feeling my Ray love, so to hear something this wonderful again... yeah, I'm happy! Pleased as chips, me!
This is a cute song, and it does have a lovely amount of energy and passion to it. It's the kind of song I would put on for a jog, because it seems to give me drive and energy, or a boost, if you will. It has impact and joy in its sound, and encouragement. This is what I need, sometimes, and this will probably be a great song to write essays too, because of how encouraging it feels.
A wonderful release from my boo Ray, and a reminder of just how good a performer she is, and what her voice can do when given the right type of song. Hopefully she keeps on doing songs this good!
Further proving to me that she is still a Goddess in the guise of an Idol, Ray's coupling track to her latest single, Kimi to, is an absolute beauty. A ballad of sorts, the song brings to light the beauty and power of Ray's voice outside of an upbeat setting, showing off just how talented and sentimental she can be when - again - given the right type of song to work with. She is expressive and powerful in her own right here, as well as passionate and as gentle as she is powerful. I love her here, and this song is gorgeous.
Kinda kills me a little inside I left this single to fester in November a bit, because I had been so disappointed by a-gain as a release. My faith is easily waned. Fuck!
This single as a whole is really well formed, and just goes to show how great Ray is, and continues to be. It is a delightful release overall, and Kimi to is a complimentary tune to ♡km/h's energy driven sound. All Hail, Queen Ray!
Orchestra by BiSH (2016.10.05)
Quite possibly one of my most-played songs during the month of November, BiSH's Orchestra is a powerful, emotive piece that really pulls at my heartstrings, and had me falling in love with not only the music video, but the group itself. Though I am nowhere near fan status yet, I have found myself holding great respect for BiSH thanks to this song. So, here's to 2017 being a bit more BiSH-ful, when it comes to that point.
Really, though, this is a great song. I mean, the video struck such a chord with me, I just had to review and appreciate it in all of its wonderful glory. It's a gorgeous piece, in both sound and vision, and it deserves praise and love from everyone. The story is a common one of forbidden love, but something we can all relate to in a way, especially if you love someone of the same sex, but know the world won't accept the love you hold. It's heartbreaking, but what makes this a stand-out piece are the lyrics, and the performance from the actresses in the accompanying music video.
I love this song. What more can I say?
YOU&I by IU (2011.11.29)
I almost forgot that, during the month of November, I might have had a brief fling with IU's fairy tale infused YOU&I. Though I'm not a fan of Kpop, I will definitely listen to it if it tickles my fancy, and especially if it fits in with that idea of fairy tales and whimsical flare.
This is a pretty song, and it's been a long while since I last gave it a good listen. But, after wanting to find some fairy tale inspiration, I thought best to look towards IU, because her songs and the overall look of her ;fairy tale-esque videos are spot on for inspiration, and YOU&I, in all its beautiful glory, really did put me in the mood to write.
Ai Mei by Rainie Yang (2005.09.09)
Here's one I listened to more towards the start of November, but a song that definitely faded away the more I listened to Orchestra. I've been on a bit of a Rainie kick lately, mostly because I've been enjoying Hi My Sweetheart, but this time around I'm into one of the Rainie classics; Ai Mei. I'm pretty sure this will become a staple for December, too, mostly for the video... I mean, it is the winter, and this songs music video fits in with the idea of winter perfectly.
I do like this song. It's one of those little gems that you go back to, and remember just how good it is. I swear, I always come back to Ai Mei and remember why I like Rainie, and why she is one of those singers you just have to listen to again and again. This is definitely one of Rainie's best, in terms of her earlier and older music. She's amazing here, her voice is absolutely beautiful, and it is a beautiful, but somewhat sad, winter tune that I thoroughly enjoy.
And just as quick as the year comes to a halt, so does this series for 2016! Once again, I want to thank everyone who has read and enjoyed this small series each and every month, and for those who have gone out of their way to look for even one of these songs to add to their own playlist for 2016! I hope there has been something here for everyone to enjoy, and that you found something new in music, artist or Idols!
It has been fun creating these lists for everyone, and I hope that next year we see its return! For now, however, please enjoy all the season brings, and love your Idols till the end of 2016 into the beginning of 2017! It's time to start getting ready for a new adventure in music and video!
See you in up-coming posts! Take care, and stay wonderful! ❤♡💛
Much Love and Seasons Greetings,