Saturday, 2 December 2017

[Music Selection] November '17

I wanted this post to be out by December 1st, however because of various hiccups (laptop playing up, me having to go to work, no time in general etc.) that did not happen, so December 2nd post it is!

Amazingly, though, I am still getting the post up earlier than I usually would... The end of the year brings a few miracles, doesn't it? >o>

It is time for the final post of the year! With November over and done with, the nights becoming colder and December finally on our doorstep, we must bid adieu to the dregs of 2017, and prepare ourselves for the finale of the year, as well as the year that begins anew! Before this happens, however, we should celebrate the last remnants of the year in music, and with Christmas!

Let's take one last look at the month gone by for 2017, and enjoy the music we have been listening to, whether it's from the past, the present, or even the future! I wonder what songs will come up this time?

As per the usual, all thoughts and choices are my own. You know the drill, and now that I've said what I need to, we'll get on with the post, so that I can concentrate on future releases! ;)

Se, no... PRESS AND PLAY!!!!!!!


I haven't had much diversity in my music this past month, I believe. I was honestly listening to one track for a majority of November, and it wasn't until the end of the month that I finally pulled those love-goggles off, and found some other gems to share with you al.. Thank goodness I did that, otherwise this would be a very sad, very poor list. I didn't want that. Not for the last Selection of the year, at least.

Wow. Has a year really gone by? That was fast, guys.

Anyway, here it is. The final Music Selection of the year! What songs made the November cut, and which ones do you think should have been in here? It's time to check it out, and press play. Let's go!

Sayonara by Sakurako Ohara (2017.11.20)

As per usual, I am enamored by Sakurako Ohara and her voice. Once again, she delivers a beautiful single, with the leading track, Sayonara, a gorgeous ballad filled with bittersweet goodbyes. It's sweet, it's pretty, and it delights me. Gosh, I really do love Sakurako's voice.

I suppose this song is in a similar vein to past releases - it has that typical but pleasant Sakurako vibe that I recognise immediately. Still, I'm not annoyed that it feels familiar, because it's just so pleasant and sweet, and once again, Sakurako's voice is simply amazing. When she needs to, she reveals the power of her voice, and all the way through she expresses the deep emotion she holds as she sings the lyrics. It's so moving, especially that bridge. I'm just so amazed by her voice, again.

I love Sayonara, it's such a nice song. A beautiful ballad that befits the gorgeous, emotive vocals of an amazing singer. Oh, I am so happy that I am able to witness and hear the joys of Sakurako Ohara's voice.

everyday by Sakurako Ohara (2017.11.20)

Spoiler alert: I love this entire single, because I'm so surprising. #sarcasm. In all seriousness, though, I find everyday to be a charming, cute little song that is uplifting and sweet, the opposite of what Sayonara is. Of course, it's not overly energetic like other songs can be, but it's still quite entertaining, and it fits Sakurako's voice beautifully. I'm glad that she knows she should sing songs that work for her.

everyday is a tinkling, fun track that has some catchy lyrics, ones I find both cute and easy to sing along to. At times, it reminds me of Sakurako's Toremoro Rain from her 2016 release, Daisuki. It has a similar pace and style, a similar bubbliness, too. The sounds are completely different, but it just reminds me of Toremoro Rain and how pleasant it is.

I want to say that the chorus is beautiful, too, it's so catchy and fun. It actually reminds me of a song I could walk to, and it would make me smile if I was listening to something as nice as this when I'm out walking. It may not be the most of vibrant of songs, but to me, it's rather colourful in its sound, and it's simply beautiful to listen to.

Paper Plane by Sakurako Ohara (2017.11.20)

This as the song I was looking forward to on this single, because Paper Plane sounds like such a good title. It makes me think of the sky and flying, and thank goodness, that's what the song makes me think of, too. I can just imaging Sakurako dancing with the backdrop of a bright, blue sky in the distance, her arms held out as if she's flying. This song really gets my imagination going, aha.

Paper Plane is a nice, upbeat track with a refreshing sound that fits perfectly with the other two tracks on the single. It's rather complimentary, standing out as the most energetic song of the three, though it is still subdued in its energy. It's a really happy track, too, and I can hear Sakurako's delight as she sings.

It's a bright, fun song, and one of my favourites on the single. Actually, all of them are my favourites, but that's to be expected. I freakin' love Sakurako, after all.

Sweet Memory by MACO (2017.11.15)

This song was introduced to me through the video that it accompanies, and damn, I really do like Sweet Memory, even if it does follow the same vein as every other MACO lead track to date. Still, I am a sucker for pop-ballads, and pretty voices, and MACO does well with both.

It reminds me heavily of everything else she has ever done, of course, but whatever. I like it, and I'm a sucker for it. Plus, I love how powerful and emotive this song becomes during the chorus. Damn, my heart... it's breaking! ;A;

I think the song has become more powerful because of the video, that I won't deny, but Sweet Memory could easily stand on its own. After all, it's very pretty, it works for MACO's voice, and it's a nice listen. The chorus is, again, powerful and highly noticeable, quite easily the best part of the entire song because of how beautiful MACO sounds at this point. The bridge is great, too, but it's not my favourite part, either.

I enjoy the song, I think it is a nice release for MACO, and a good choice for the leading track from her latest album. Of course, it's also the most obvious choice, because it is a standard MACO track from beginning until end.

Yume no Hate Made by Hayami Saori (2017.11.08)

I don't know what I expected from this track, but what I got, I certainly was not prepared for. Hayami Saori has a unique, refined voice, one that reminds me of older singers from the 70's and 80's. In fact, she reminds me of a stage singer in a glittering dress with backing singers. Something like that (because I can't remember the style of music it is, and damn, I am amazing with descriptions today #sarcasm.)

I simply enjoy the song, because it surprised me with Saori's unique voice and style. I didn't expect it, but I was pleasantly taken aback by the talent this singer has. I thought I'd get a cute, fun track, when in reality, I was given something mature and refined. A nice surprise for me, a newbie to the Hayami Saori train.

STAR-T! by Kasai Tomomi (2017.11.15)

Yo, this is my favourite track from November, no contest. Vibrant, energetic, fun and charismatic, Kasa Tomomi returns with a smile and a delightful leading track for her first album release,
STAR-T!, which is also marks her return to the Idol industry after a three year absence.

And damn, if her re-start is as epic as her album is, then I'm glad she took some time to make her return. She really is wonderful in this entire release, but STAR-T! is such an entertaining song on its own, and I can see why it's the leading track. It's so fun, carefree and charming, and Kasai really seems like she's having a blast singing it. I've missed the sound of her voice, and I'm so happy to see her return with a song like this.

It's a great song, I've been looping it like nobodies business, and I adore how fun and energetic it is, and how delightful Kasai herself sounds. I'm happy for her return, and I hope she releases a new single come the new year, cause I need her back in my Idol-loving life.

UFO by BOYS AND MEN (2017.11.03)

Oh, days, ever since Pink Babies released their version of UFO, I have loved almost every single cover version that has been made since (with FEMM's being the exception). Thankfully, BOYS AND MEN's version is just as entertaining and catchy as the past incarnations of this track, and damn, how have other boy groups not thrown themselves onto this song!? It's so catchy, entertaining, and it fits male vocals well! I need more boy groups to do this!

This is a great cover, and it feels a little more dated than other updates have in previous years, giving it a nice, nostalgic feel that is so 80's. Oh, and the video that accompanies this is so hilarious, and done with such seriousness and horror that it's absolutely perfect. I need the full thing, stat.

It's great, I love it, and hey! Here's the Spotify link. Go ham, guys.

Ai no Tane (20th Anniversary ver.) by Morning Musume 20th (2017.11.03)

Okay, I like Ai no Tane. I loved the song back when I was starting out as a fan of Idols, and whilst I don't exactly listen to it on repeat all the time, it holds a special place in my heart. I loved listening to (and singing) this song, so to hear and see an updated version with the old-gen and new-gen was a freakin' delight for me. I mean, it would have been nice to see just an older gen version, but whatever. We can't exactly be picky, at this point.

I'm just glad that something special was done for the anniversary release, and that we were actually given a good remake instead of a shit 20th anniversary song.

This is a fun remake, and it's nice to see the return of the originals for the release. They sound great against the questionable vocals of the current girls, and they mix quite well. I'm glad it was released, and I know a lot of fans are delighted by Ai no Tane (20th Anniversary ver.). A nice nod to how the group came to be, and a great reminder in how much MoMusu has changed over these past 20 years.

October Roll-Over

Kimi to Boku no Symphony by Toyama Nao (2017.10.25)

This is such a pretty song, and damn, I honestly thought this was a November release. It isn't, but hey-oh, I don't care, cause I did really enjoy Kimi to Boku no Symphony from Toyama Nao. She's such a cute, fun singer, and her voice is so appealing her.

The song as a whole is really pretty, too. I love that opening line, especially; it's so quiet and appealing, and it feels like I'm being told a secret.

Now, Nao's voice isn't the strongest - this song demonstrates that well - but Nao really does her best to draw you in, and honestly, I feel like her soft vocals are quite adorable and enchanting. The fact that she doesn't try to reach high notes she can't hit, or go above and beyond what she can actually do only endears her to me more. This girl knows her limits, and she works with that well. Sure, she might not be powerful or strong in the chorus, but she sounds so cute!

I would love to hear her whisper throughout a song. I think she could pull it off. Hey, when can we get a Peach sleep sky feat. Toyama Nao collaboration?

Wakain da shi! by Morning Musume '17 (2017.10.04)

As we get ever-close to Duu's graduuation date, it feels fitting that I listen to this song a little more. Granted, I didn't listen to it a lot, but it was there. In my mind, my heart, and my ears.


... Le sigh. It's a good song, a nice little send-off for Duu that is perfectly fitting. A nice, mellow sound that has an uplifting feel, whilst still being emotional as all heck. Those What Can I do? DO's! are completely heart-wrenching, too, and whenever I listen to this song, I just see Duu's smile and the energy she delivers all the way through. She is such a strong presence here, and she sounds incredible.

It's a great song for a great Idol, and damn, I'm going to miss her... What can we doooooo!? Cry, that's what ; A;


Ai no Tane by Morning Musume (1997.11.03)

Oh, this is such a beautiful song. I love the original Ai no Tane, because it was one of those old-school MoMusu tracks I took to like fire. Plus, it was one of those first few songs I dubbed when I was in a project back in youtube's dubbing hey-day. There are some damn sweet memories connected to this song, and I will always look back on it fondly.

Also, it's pretty cool to see just how far the group itself has come; a bunch of graduates, a lot of new faces, and some more diverse expressions! They really have grown, haven't they?

It's a great song, a wonderful beginning for MoMusu, and an amazing feat for the girls themselves to have been able to sell their debut single, to continue as a group. What's even more amazing is, after 20 years, it still holds up as a song and is remembered fondly by many generations, and the original members themselves.

Wow. It's the song that started it all. Who'd have thought it would go on for this long?

Morning Misoshiru by Morning Musume '17 (2017.03.08)

Yo, this is amazing, and I still enjoy the delight of Morning Misoshiru, months after its release. It's such a delight, especially when paired with the re-make of Ai no Tane. UIt's like taking a trip back in time, but with better mixing, a bit better quality, and a fun, updated instrumental which works well for the current lineup. It's also super nice to just hear how far this group has come, 20 years on.

Morning Misoshiru is cute, and it's upbeat and energetic, showcasing the brightness of the current lineup as they give their all in the renewed lyrics, and show off their charisma, personality and joy throughout the song. I love how varied the vocals are, too, giving the song much-needed texture that we don't always get with big groups - I swear, half-the time, I can tell who is singing. I can't do that with other big groups, because they are blended to the nines, so they all sound like one. Here, you can at least pin-point the individuals.

It's a great song, with a great atmosphere and a fun, upbeat instrumental. Morning Misoshiru is warm and inviting, and it's hella delightful. A great update, for a great classic.

Monthly JUMP!!

Abracadab Luv! by Houkago Princess (2017.12.20)

Okay, so whilst I was a tad apprehensive about this release - the dismissal of Sahochi, no solo vcover versions for Mayumin or Himarin, a lack of a DVD on the Limited ver. (which I get, now) and the tackiness of the costumes - I'm actually excited about it, now. I mean, firstly, there is a 2017 version of Juliet ~Kimi wo suki na 100 no Riyuu~ included, as well as a Team Miracle specific track. Finally.

Plus, I actually quite the lead track, and the more I hear it, the more entertaining it is. I don't think it's the groups best song, because it hasn't, but it really is pleasing. Plus, it's another new direction the group has gone in, sound wise, and I love the almost sexy whisper-singing that goes on here. It's a little bit addictive.

I look forward to all of the tracks included in the single, and to seeing where HouPri go next. Let's just hope that the rest of the track list lives up to my expectations.

Bokura no Seifuku Christmas by =LOVE (2017.12.06)

Okay, so I have been addicted to this track all November, to a point where very few songs got a look in aside from this one. I mean, it's the full MV that has me hooked, and I really am excited for this release. It's damn fun, and I am loving =LOVE so much more now.

Catchy, cute, energetic and sweet, Bokura no Seifuku Christmas is a true Christmas song in sound, and it has honestly brought the spirit and warmth of the season that I had yet to feel until the MV was released, not so long ago. I absolutely adore this song and video, and it has totally prepped me for the on-coming season. I'm so excited for Christmas now, and this song is to thank for it! It's such a delight!

I hope the rest of the single is just as catchy and cute as this release, and that =LOVE continue to live up to my expectations. I am regarding them highly, right now, and I want them to stay in a good light. Damn, they truly are amazing!

⑮ Thank you, too by Morning Musume '17 (2017.12.06)

I am more or less looking forward to this, only because Joshi Kashimashi Monogatari will be in there. The rest, I couldn't give two figs about, though that line of thinking could easily change once the actual songs are released... I mean, who knows? This album could be incredible. So far, the song names look good, and it's nice to see the girls divvied into different groupings once again, but, the songs could suck, quite easily.

I mean, that's how their last two albums were, so I'm not holding out much hope. I know that the H!P fandom is excited, though, because it's the first album release in well over three years. Wow, that's a gap and a half. So, yeah, I get why people are excited about this. If I cared enough, I would be, too.

I just want my Joshi Kashimashi Monogatari reboot. That is all, and thank you.


And there we have it! The end of the year draws ever nearer, and with my final Music Selection for 2017 over and done with, it truly feels like the year is saying its final goodbyes. I can't believe it, and honestly, I don't want the year to end... Well, it's not finished yet! There's still so much to do, after all!

For everyone who has read these posts throughout the year, suggested singles and albums to review, and so much more, thank you! I am so happy that I was able to share these songs with you all, and to have your suggestions when I didn't include something you enjoyed, too. It was an absolute pleasure, and I hope to continue these Selection themed posts into the next year!

It's been fun, and the music has been wonderful. I look forward to sharing 2018's journey in music and joy with you, too.

Until next time, everyone. Thank you, and take care.

Love thy Idols and listen with happiness,

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