[This Is Duu!], also known as [A Week with Duu], is a series of posts dedicated to Kudo Haruka and her impending graduation on December 11th 2017. It is a series that will look at the wonders of Duu, whether it is in the form of a music video, sketches, live performances or even her photo books!
To celebrate all that is Duu, let's take a look back at everything she has given us, and remember the joy that she has delivered since debuting in Morning Musume, all those years ago! Are you ready to celebrate all that is Duu?
The HIIIIIIIIIIIIIIIIIIIIIIIIIILLS are aliiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiive, with the sound of DUU-SONG!
(It had to be done, PS, that image is from Harukaze, Duu's 3rd photo book)
Due to my difficulty with time, I was a tad stumped about what to duu (kekeke) for my second Duu-themed post. I knew it wouldn't be a PV review - I like to interchange between MV reviews and other kinds of reviews for these types of series - so, I wondered.... What Can I Duu? (DUU!), and decided it would be a toss-up between various vieos of Duu being her charming, cute self on various variety segments, or a bunch of Duu-centric songs.
Of course, the songs won out, because I am basic, and also because I want a little more time to find good variety videos of Duu, if that post ever does arise. Plus, I find it easier to talk about Duu's performance skillz and singing chops when I'm in a pinch.
Oh, and I found some nice songs. A lot of them are from 2016, but who cares? If they feature Duu, then I am delighted already. I know she's an amazing performer, so no matter what she does, it's a win/win situation, amiright?
Thankfully, I have found 9 videos to share with you all that depict the delight of Duu. One such video contains two songs, rounding the number to 10 tracks for your listening pleasure, a beautiful amount for this delightful 10th generation member. That feels right, doesn't it?
Yep. It feels absolutely freakin'-right, Chiima!
Now, because I've added all of these tracks in on the day I post this, I've actually never heard a good chunk of them performed by Duu. Some tracks, I didn't even know existed! So, it's a surprise for me what comes up here, as well as you, though there are a few I was aware of in my time as a MoMusu fan. So, yeah; it's a review as I go kinda thing, though I doubt I'll hate them all. It's freakin' DUU, after all.
And with that thought in mind - DUU! - let's get on with this second post for my Week with Duu series. This Is Duu, people, and these are The Sounds of Duu. I hope your ears will feel delighted after this adventure.
Are you ready to press Play? ▶ Let's go~
Seishun no Custard (2016)
I have never actually heard this song before, but it's an Ongaku Gatas release from the groups first album, so a lot of people probably know it by now. Despite never hearing it before, though, Duu really does this song justice; she's powerful, energetic, and full of beans. There really is no denying just how much she is enjoying this performance.
The song isn't what hooks me, though - it's Duu, because she's a delight. Every moment spent on her is a winning moment, and you feel invested in her as a performer. She's radiant, her smile is bright, and her voice is clear and strong. I adore this side of Duu who owns the stage, and I feel proud of her as she sings this, despite its short run time.
She really is amazing, isn't she?
Rottara Rottara and Dream Last Train (2016)
When the opening of Rottara Rottara began, I was floored. Then, once Duu started singing, the nostalgia and love for this song kicked in, and I wanted to cry. It's just so good! Mixed with Duu's husky voice, her charm and energy, and you have a beautiful combination. This classic tune suits Duu beautifully, and she brings a shining performance that could rival Buono themselves.
Rottara Rottara is such a fun, carefree song, one that I have loved for ages. To hear Duu cover it with her own seasoned vocals and charming personality, makes me happy. I love it, and Duu has floored me with her adorable, quirky side that shines through this song. I want her to sing more classic Buono, and I want her to continue showing this adorable side, even if it's only for fan club events. She is just so freakin' charming!
Dream Last Train is next, and of course, we all know how wonderful Duu is in this track. It's a song she was a part of already, but to actually hear her sing it solo is probably a dream come true for many fans! Plus, she sings it so beautifully! The emotion is clear in her voice, and once again, her energy is palpable. She's freakin' wonderful, and I'm in love with her performance.
The way she expresses herself, the look in her eyes and everything else about her, is wonderful. Duu is an exciting, fun performer, and I love that she tackles these two songs with as much gusto and charm as she does for others.
Oh, dang, I am missing Duu's spiky hair. but even flat-hair-Duu is cute to see. It's also nice to hear her singing one of the more recent staples from H!P's collection of songs. Seriously, Moshimo... is great, and whilst Duu is probably the last person I would think to give this song to, she sings it well.
I think that Duu's speaking parts are definitely the best part of this, but her singing is fine, too. A little pitchy in places, but I know that singing live (and when dancing) isn't the easiest of things. Plus, Duu sang the whole freakin' thing. Damn, that makes me happy, and I bet it made a lot of her fans happy, too, because we don't really get a lot of Duu Time anyway. So, way back in 2014, this would have been hella precious to see.
I think what wins me over most, though, is Duu's cuteness and the happiness she clearly has when singing this song. This is a girl who loves to perform, and when she's performing, her smile is so bright and clear, I can't help but love her. She's just too freakin' adorable!
So, whilst this isn't my favourite performance from Duu, I like it enough. Plus, I bet this is a fan favourite to watch - after all, it's Duu being her vibrant, beautiful self, and she truly does shine on the stage. She's a wonderful performer, and that skill in devotion to her performance once again shows in Moshimo...
Duu did good, yo.
Chokotto LOVE (2016)
Though it isn't a solo performance, I wanted to include something that showed off Duu's personality on stage once again, more so, how comedic and dominating she can be. Here, Duu truly takes the cake and holds down the stage with her performance of Chootto LOVE feat. Moe and
Duu is seriously vibrant here, and whilst both Moe and
I am simply drawn to Duu here, and not just because her costume stands out. She herself stands out from the crowd, and her personality shines. This is Charming Duu, right here, and she is ready to make you look! Both Moe and
Navi ga Kowareta Oujisama (LOVE CHANCE) (2016)
Yo, I didn't know this song existed before, but holy shit, it's great, and that opening from Duu! She is freakin' excited to sing this song, and she wants you to know it! I love that she comes into this song with such confidence, great energy, and a bright smile upon her face. It's something we should get used to when watching Duu perform; she really does give it her all.
Even though this is only a short cover, Duu takes every moment and owns it. She doesn't stop for one second, dominating that stage and giving each step, each note her all. I'm really amazed by her in this, because she looks and sounds amazing. I think that, so far, this is my favourite performance from Duu. She just looks like she's having a blast!
Duu is amazing in Navi ga Kowareta Oujisama (LOVE CHANCE), and the other videos have some strong competition to go up against. She's breath-taking, and she blows me away. Duu is freakin' incredible as a performer!
Koi ING (2014)
Of course I had to include one of my favourite songs, because it's my favourite, and whilst Duu doesn't necessarily sing this one as well as she does others, it's still great to hear Duu have a go at one of the most iconic pop-ballads Morning Musume has ever produced. Plus, she just gives it her all, and she does a pretty nice job of it.
This isn't the most stable I have heard Duu, mind, but she is singing her lil' heart out in Hawaii, and her smile is so cute and bright! She is truly adorable.
It's a nice attempt at one of my favourite songs, and Duu sang it with confidence whilst also trying to keep it delicate. It's a hard song for a husky-voiced girl like her to pull off properly, but it's still a winning performance, and damn, Duu. I'm gonna cry ;; PLEASE don't sing this song at your Graduation, or I will become a puddle of woe. Please.
Robo Kiss (2013-14?)
Of course I had to include the Dynamic duo, because how can I not when it comes to Duu? Ever since these two debuted, they have been a combination of cuteness and nuttiness that has brought joy and laughter to many, as well as delivered a winning combination vocally. Seriously, these two were made for each other! Their voices are a beautiful combination, balancing one another out to create a pleasant sound.
Also, YAY, Robo Kiss! I enjoy this song quite a bit.
Both Duu and Maachan here are wonderful, their charisma, energy, happiness and chemistry through the roof. They are such a wonderful duo, and you can see that they love performing together here. The small antics they get up to on stage, the closeness they share and the cute little looks they pass to one another are enough to send us into a frenzy. It's a friendship I believe in, because it's just so clear to see.
A performance like this also enables us to see just how amazing Duu is when she's performing with someone she loves. Her performance with Moe and Momona was cute, but when paired with Maachan, you can just see how much more invested in the person she is. The way she acts around Duu is freakin' lovable!
Admittedly, this is one of those performances where Duu's voice sounds void of life, but I'll let her pass on that. Her chemistry with Maachan is far too sweet, and this Robo Kiss cover delights me.
Futsuu no Shoujo A (2014)
Perhaps 2014 was the year where Duu and Maachan sang together a lot. I don't know, but damn, this was a good performance from these two. Also, I forgot this song existed, but it's actually a great track, one that has a mature tone. Of course, Duu suits this song 100%. Maachan, on the other hand...? Yeah, her vocals kinda ruin the vibe, but she can't help how she sounds. Plus, bless her heart, she is trying.
It's a very short performance, but what we do get is great, and quite memorable. Duu is the star here, captivating and strong, a joy to watch like the other performances. Her husky vocals are right at home in this song, and I actually beg to wonder why she hasn't sung Futsuu no Shoujo A more? This is a song she owns, a song that she dominates completely. She should just sing it solo, for her last concert. Not encore solo, but just a solo.
I kinda demand it, at this point.
This is a Duu track, no question, and she completely owns the whole performance. I wish it had been a longer performance, for the sake of hearing more Duu, because she is fantastic here, and she deserves to dominate this song more than she already does. Who wants the same?
YOUR SONG ~Seishun Sensei~ (2016)
Of course, I have to end on a ballad. It wasn't an intentional thing, mind, but it feels right that I placed this song last, because damn, it's so pretty, and it suits Duu fairly well. Of course, most songs do suit Duu well, and of course she sings this one so prettily. The sincerity of the lyrics is pretty evident in her voice, too. I like it when my Idols can actually evoke emotion, y'all.
Duu is beautiful here, and the power she holds as a singer, as well as the emotion and the dedication for her performance are evident. She sounds incredible, and I can't help but feel my heart squeeze just a little when I hear her sing this song, because it makes me realise that, yeah, she's going soon. It's the kinda song that reminds you of the things you want to forget will happen in the near-future, and knowing that Duu could easily sing something like this... Holy shit, I don't want it to happen.
I want to cry as I listen to this song, because everything is hitting me at once. This beautiful, tremendous Idol will graduate soon, and she could sing something that sounds as heartbreaking as this. I think it doesn't help that you can clearly see just how much this song resonates with Duu, because it looks like the kid dries her eyes at one point. I think that Duu is super invested in her performance here, to a point where - I swear - her eyes look teary.
This girl is giving YOUR SONG ~Seishun Sensei~ her all, and she is delivering a performance to be remembered. This is amazing, a stand-out performance from Duu, and a contender for my favourite from the set I have given for this post. She sounds incredible, and shit, I nearly cried.
DUUUUUUUUUUUUUUUUUUUUUUUUUUUUUUUU! ; A;
Oh, gosh, this had me feeling more than I anticipated. I mean, I like seeing Duu perform anyway, because she is one of the last few worthwhile performers in MoMusu right now. Out of all of the members, she is easily the most noticeable on stage for both her charisma, and her presence. Plus, she's a great singer and dancer, and her personality shines through in a way that few others do. You just can't help but be drawn to Duu - Chokotto LOVE proved that much.
This girl is incredible, and it's going to be a damn shame when she graduates on the 11th. I mean, without her, a giant hole will be left in the group during stage performances, one that very few can fill. I think only Maria, Reina and maybe Eripon can fill that void at this point? Who knows.
Kudo Haruka is amazing. She has such strength and emotion as a singer and performer, and the dedication she shows is incredible. I can't fault this girl at all, because even in the songs she doesn't do as well in, there is a smile on her face and a true love for performing that comes out. She gives everything her all, and makes sure you remember that she was there, and that she stood on the stage before you. Duu sings not only for herself, but for the audience, too.
And now, I must go and cry as I listen to YOUR SONG ~Seishun Sensei~ all over again, on a giant loop, for days on end. This is my wallow-in-woe track for the next week, people, and I won't be replacing it any time soon. I'm gonna go mourn Duu's impending Graduation, now.
DUUUUUUUUUUUUUUUUUUUUUUUUUUUUUUUUU! ; A;
Until the next one, people. The date of DUUM is getting nearer ; A;