Saturday, 4 November 2017

The Sign Is Go! What Can I Do But Say Here We Go! - Morning Musume '17's 'Jama Shinaide Here We Go! / Dokyuu no Go Sign / Wakain da shi!' Single Review!

I was asked by an Anonymous reader if I would be reviewing the latest single release from Morning Musume '17, and now that my Sins Of The Idol series is finally over and done with, I thought to myself 'Yeah, why the heck not', because good grief, this has to be one of the more interesting graduation releases to come out of the group in a while.

It's nice to see that H!P are finally colouring outside of the lines.

Celebrating the debut of Morito Chisaki (14th generation), the 20th Anniversary of Morning Musume, and also the final release for Kudo Haruka (10th generation), Jama Shinaide Here We Go! / Dokyuu no Go Sign / Wakain da shi! has a lot going on, and a lot to live up to. I mean, being the 20th Anniversary release, there will be expectations from a lot of people - like, the expectation that it'll actually be a decent release. Lord knows, the rest haven't been that amazing, if only because they've followed a similar formula and pattern in sound, composition and everything else.

I'm not saying that this single is doing leaps and bounds away from that - it's not - but, it's taking a step forward, at least. I mean, the songs actually sound unique, which is a first.

And bloody Hell, the one I thought was a total non-Tsunku release is by Tsunku. Maybe the Hawaiin air is giving him good vibes, or maybe producing a little magic? Who freakin' knows.

Ahem. Going a little overboard, there. In short, I already know my feelings towards the single, but we're gonna review it, because it's fun to do so, and I like to see how my opinions differ from everyone else. So, with my thoughts in check and my typing hands at the ready, it's time to head into the first release for MoMusu's latest transfer, Morito Chisaki, and the final release to feature Kudo Haruka, before her graduation date this year. And whilst we're at it, let's see if this release is worthy of being the 20th Anniversary release for Morning Musume.

It's time to shine, readers. Here we go~

Jama Shinaide Here We Go! / Dokyuu no Go Sign / Wakain da shi! by Morning Musume '17

Release Date: October 4th, 2017
Editions Available: 8 (5 Limited, 3 Regular)

Track List:
  1. Jama Shinaide Here We Go!
  2. Dokyuu no Go Sign
  3. Wakain da shi!
  4. Jama Shinaide Here We Go! (Instrumental ver.)
  5. Dokyuu no Go Sign (Insturmental ver.)
  6. Wakain da shi! (Instrumental ver.)
Jama Shinaide Here We Go! / Dokyuu no Go Sign / Wakain da shi!
~Single Review~

1. Jama Shinaide Here We Go!

I want to say this in the nicest way possible, but, this one is the worst song on the track list. But - just to confuse everyone - it's not a bad song, either. Here's why.

Jama Shinaide Here We Go! is a good song, but it's such a cookie cutter sound for Morning Musume, at this point, and of all three songs present on the track list, this is the one that I can pin-point as the quint-essential MoMusu sound, the one we're tired of hearing, but the one we've become comfortable with. It breaks no boundaries, it doesn't stray from the guidelines it has been set, and it certainly doesn't break down the four walls of the box it is stuck in. Hell, even the way the members sing feels stagnant and familiar. Nothing feels fresh or new.

The way it makes use of the spoken lines, however, is quite wonderful. I mean, spoken verse is nothing new to MoMusu (or any other Idol group, for that matter) but it feels unique to this song, like it's actually trying to add some flavour and flare to it. It actually gives it a bittersweet, almost sentimental feel. Having both Haruna's speak these lines feels right, too, giving their spoken verse the right amount of care and emotion that only those two could give. It's just so pretty, clear and emotive.

Aside from that, though, this song is bad because it's the product of everything else before it, and it lacks the creativity needed to make it stand out against the other two tracks. Still, it's good because it's comfortable and familiar, and because its use of spoken verse is just gorgeous.

The music video is, however, something to rave about. I don't think it's anything new in the world of Idols, but for MoMusu, it's another chance to show off their creativity in the editing department, and it allows us to see a different side of the 'serious and cool' MoMusu.

Though the idea behind the video is simple, it's still a fun concept. I love seeing mirrors used in videos, film or otherwise, because the use of mirrors only deepens the meaning of the story, song or video that it's being used in. Themes of duplicity, two-faced-ness, confinement or the reflection of ones own actions and concerns are themes and ideas we can tap into when we see mirrors in any form of media. The film, The Shining (1980), made use of mirrors and doors to symbolise the duality of both Jack and his son Danny, whilst doors can symbolise the labyrinth that is the Overlook Hotel. Similar to The Shining, the mirrors used in Jama Shinaide Here We Go! reflect another side to the members, but here, it depicts their feelings and a fear they have that sends their reflections running. And, like doors, these very mirrors that hold the members captive are their very own passages, and can even be seen as a labyrinth when the members try to find the right mirror as other members pass through them in the room of mirrors.

It is a maze of mirrors, and until the members are completely content with themselves, they won't be able to reach out to their reflections or break away from their confined space.

It's a really interesting video, and again, I love seeing MV's make use of mirrors, because it gives me a lot to think about. It's so much more than a cool concept, and I like what the director has done here. It works very well, and it's quite clear in what it's trying to spell out, at least, it is to me. But, like any video, it can be interpreted any way. I'm actually intrigued to find out what other people think, regarding the use of mirrors and passages here.

Oh, and the rest of the effects used in the choreography portions remind me heavily of Mukidashi de Mukiatte, but here, they look like rippling water, and yeah, it looks pretty.

... Wow, this got heavy, fast. Okay, time to reel it in.

Jama Shinaide Here We Go! is not the best song on the track list, but, it's still good. I actually enjoy it a lot, but I've found that I like it more when I'm watching the video. It's not a track I'd go out of my way to listen to on its own, only because it's so reminiscent of past releases from this group. It has its charms, though, such as the spoken verse, but in general, I like it mostly for the video itself. It's an okay track, and it fits fine here. I just wish a few boundaries had been broken with the song itself. Ah, well.

2. Dokyuu no Go Sign

This is the song that I really didn't remember. I mean, I knew it was a fun, entertaining track, but after the first few listens, it was gone from my mind. I was pretty adamant that I wouldn't remember or care about it after a while, because as you all probably know by now, I'm a stubborn fool.

Yeah, well I take that all back. I'm really digging this song, now, and heck yeah, I remember it!

There are some clear signs (lol) in Dokyuu no Go Sign that make it a MoMusu track, but it's a type of sound we've not heard in a while, because surprisingly, this is freakin' old school. Like, this is the sound of MoMusu from long ago, a mixture of upbeat, happy, energetic, carefree and - for lack of a better word - genki joy that I swear, we've not experienced in a long time. Not even Utakata Saturday Night was this hyped up or old-school. Sure, Utakata had the feel of classic MoMusu, but Dokyuu no Go Sign actually embodies it. I honestly didn't expect that, but damn, they did it.

Holy shit, I'm going down memory lane. Finally, the MoMusu is remember is back! And damn, that one line before the choir kicks in is a complete 3, 2, 1 Breaking Out moment. I did not expect it, but I'm living for it. And yeah, I'm living for the choir, too, because it's just epic in so many ways. It knows it's awesome, and it knows it makes this song even more epic than it already is. Hallelujah, I believe again!

Just don't fuck it up with the album release, H!P >o>

Even the music video is damn entertaining. Matching the energy of the song, the video is a flurry of colour, signs and happiness that is so bubbly, I can feel the carbonation in the air. It's a winding, fast-paced flurry of joy and cuteness, and I really can't get over just how wonderful it all is! Those smiles are freakin' genuine, the group chemistry is through the freakin' roof, and the additional scenes are just priceless! I haven't seen MoMusu look so invested in their own videos in a long time. Even their choreography looks like they're completely in tune with it, like it's coming from their spirit and happiness, and not something they had to learn for the sake of promotion.

I'm totally feeling it, guys. It's as if I've found Jesus again, or something. I'm 100% invested in Dokyuu no Go Sign, and I feel like I've discovered MoMusu all over again. That's what this video is doing to me.

It's making me believe, and holy shit-fudge-cookies-HouPri-Messiah, I think I'm in love. I'm in love with MoMusu again, and God damnit, I have to swallow my pride and let it happen. Shit.

Seriously though, this video is amazing. I have my issues with it - the white outfits and the blank backdrop, actually - but honestly, it's a perfect video, otherwise . I mean, how is not? It's entertaining, bubbly, cute, infectious as fuck, wonderful, sweet, personal and just so, so wonderful. I want to cry because it's so good, and whenever I watch it, I feel such a strong attachment towards it, and I get butterflies. That is how wonderful it is.

Before I end this part of the review, I want to throw out there that the video itself reminds me of One and Only and 3, 2, 1 Breaking Out, but I also see it as its own thing. It knows what it is, and it knows what to do to keep you hooked. It's honestly a great video, and it does everything right. Well fuckin' done, H!P. Now, please throw some of that damn creativity towards your single cover designs. Thanks.

All in all, I freakin' love this song. I had my reservations about it at first, but after listening to it more, I realise now that I adore it. It's an amazing track, a nostalgia kick to the old days of classic MoMusu, whilst having its own identity as a current MM track. It's the perfect homage to the past, but it's relevant now, and it's freakin' beautiful. How could we have ever asked for anything more perfect?

3. Wakain da shi!

Much like Dokyuu no Go Sign, I had a few issues with Wakain da shi! as a song. Recently however, my tune has changed, and I don't know how. I guess this is just one of those songs that has a way of making you like it, even when you don't necessarily want to. Not that I didn't want to like it, of course, but somehow, someway, it wheedled its way into my brain.

And that is the story of how I came to enjoy Wakain da shi! The End~

Silliness aside, this is a damn good song. It's not a ballad, surprisingly, but it's such a sentimental, personal track, and an unexpected release, to boot. I guess it's the perfect pick for Duu's graduation song, because it's so unique and intriguing, and it fits her vibe quite well. A mature, emotive sound that is powerful in its message, despite the mellow sound it produces. It just feels like such a natural, gentle song, but I can hear the quiet power it yields.

I can see many of us fans crying when we hear this sound, kind of like how I cry whenever I hear Utakatta Saturday Night. You know the emotion is in there, and you can hear the love embedded deep within it. It's just so freakin' powerful, and I doubt I'll forget this one any time soon, for both its unique quality, and its sentimentality.

How in the fuck did Tsunku come up with something this pure and enchanting? Damn, that man is still surprising me, even after his retirement.

Now I know I'm not the only one who adores this video, because if you have seen it, then you'll know just how heart-breaking and beautiful it is. This is such a bittersweet send-off for Duu, and whilst I have yet to see the full version at this point in time, I know that it's going to be just as emotional as what we see here. I mean, just look at it. Everything about Wakain da shi! as a video screams sentimentality. Whenever I watch it, I want to tear up. I mean, I cried when I first watched it, because it was just so sad. It may look happy throughout most of it, but you know that deep down, this video is foreshadowing the future.

Duu walking alone and passing the other members as she walks is symbolic of the path that Duu is going to be taking once she graduates, showcasing her desires to walk alone, away from Morning Musume so that she can become her own person and fulfill her new dreams. Her walking beside them and spending time with the girls on the bus and in the field is symbolic of her remaining time with the group, whilst her sitting alone in the bus at the start is allowing us to see that, whilst everyone else has left together, she is staying behind to finally make her own way in life.

Even the choreography is symbolic of Duu's desire to stand alone. When the other members kneel, Duu is the only one left standing. When the other members step back, Duu is the one standing at the front, alone, the rest of MoMusu behind her whilst they watch her from behind. And that is what Wakain da shi! is all about; it's about Kudo Haruka moving forward and leaving Morning Musume behind her as they watch one, supporting her together and continuing without her.

Of course, no matter what, they will be watching her take on this new path and her new goals, and they will be cheering her on along the way and rejoining her whenever she needs them. The 10th gen especially play a huge role in this, because they are the ones that Duu greets, and they are the ones that she stands together with, because they are the ones who she began her journey with.

This video expresses Kudo's desires to be an individual, but also her love for Morning Musume and her days an Idol. It's all about her, and it's all about the future, and that only makes the video even more emotional and heart-wrenching.

Wakain da shi! as both a song and a music video is emotional. It's deep and thoughtful, and I know that this is going to be the song that breaks hearts. It never really sunk in that Duu was graduating, and whilst it's beein in the back of my mind since her announcement, it's not truly sunk in until now. I've not been that upset about it, but seeing Wakain da shi! has made me realise that this is the beginning of the end. Duu is leaving, this is her goodbye song, and what a beautiful send-off it is to her. In every way, it showcases the importance of Duu to the members, the staff, Tsunku and the fans, and it also showcases the desires of Duu herself, whilst also showing her love for the group that she desired to be in since a child.

Wakain da shi! is incredible. What more can I say?


I really don't need to spell it out, do I? I love this release, even the one song that I say is 'bad', but only because it has inherited all of the other traits and sounds other releases have embodied. Even then, it's not that bad; it's just a product of its many parents, and it really can't help being what it is. I just have to blame Tsunku for that one.

In all seriousness, though, this is a good single. It's distinct, varied in all three tracks, and each song has its own presence, and individually, they are all memorable. I can't say that all three are strong, though, because Jama Shinaide Here We Go! needs its video to help it stand, however, both Dokyuu no Go Sign and Wakain da shi! are amazing tracks, and both hold their own well when I listen to them. They are such a breath of fresh air, too, giving this single a much needed change of pace, whilst also allowing it to stand out from its predecessors. It's pretty unique, and coupled with Brand New Morning, I can really feel my hope for Morning Musume building again.


I am honestly surprised by this release, and for all the right reasons. It's a complete breath of fresh air, delivering something new, whilst also bringing us something that we are familiar with. I feel so much love and dedication in this release, in all three songs, and I can see just how much Morning Musume have blossomed since Sayumi left. They've come into their own, finally, and they feel so much more complete than they ever have done. In both their sound and their image, the members have matured, but they've retained their youthful aura and presence, too. In each song and video, they capture different essences of themselves, and that is pretty amazing.

There was a point where they couldn't even do that, but they've figured it all out. That makes me really happy.

I feel enamoured by this entire release. Even Jama Shinaide Here We Go! - the song I consider to be the weakest and worst - has somehow entertained me, and despite my grudges with it, I can't help but think it is good, if only in small doses. As an entire release, though, everything about the groups 64th release is great. It stands out against other releases, and once again, it gives me hope for MoMusu. It makes me believe that I can fall in love with them all over again.

Jama Shinaide Here We Go! / Dokyuu no Go Sign / Wakain da shi! deserves its full, five stars. I love it, and I'm so glad that for her final release, Kudo Haruka was given something so amazing, so memorable and entertaining for her graduation single. She really deserves it, and she is one of the many reasons why this release is so great.

And yeah, it's a great Anniversary single, too. It wasn't what I had anticipated, of course, but it never is. Still, they managed to capture various sides of MoMusu, whilst also sending a little nod to the past in Dokyuu no Go Sign. So, all in all, I would call this a successful release for MoMusu's 20th Anniversary, and a rather successful first release for Morito Chisaki, to boot.

I really can't fault this one, you guys... Well, aside from the few faults I did point out, of course.

A great release, and a great send-off. My faith is slowly being restored.

Thank you to the Anonymous reviewer who asked if I would be doing this review, and thank you to everyone who has read it! I appreciate your time, and I hope that you enjoyed the review! If you have any thoughts or suggestions yourself, please don't hesitate to leave them in the comments. I will try my best to get to them as soon as I can, and to meet your expectations. I look forward to hearing from you all!

Until the next post, though, please take care, enjoy your music, single releases and music videos, stay happy and healthy, be safe and, of course, love thy Idol.

Regards and positive vibes,


  1. D-did Chiima just compare Jama Shinaide to The Shining?

    This is why we love you.

    1. Even though my reply is late, this is honestly my 'comment of the year' for 2017.

      I think back to it and feel so happy ;-;