I’ve been in Tokyo all week, just sort of loafing about, and on one of my random walks I ended up in Harajuku. Amongst the waves of garish-pink fabric and whipped-cream-heavy crepes, I spied the official AKB48 store, Harajuku branch. I almost went in, except 1.) you had to wait in line with 2.) a bunch of high-school girls to 3.) ride an elevator up. I have just enough dignity to not do any of that, so sorry no AKB48 store trip report for ya’ll.
Related – Harajuku really really sucks but they had some good looking burger cafes so I’m afraid I’m gonna be coming back for that = (
Miliyah Kato “Aitai”
Considering she has a best-of album to sell, one can give Miliyah Kato a little slack for reheating this 2009 song in order to promote a retrospective record. Still, all goodwill gets tossed away once it becomes clear “Aitai” is about as generic a ballad can get. Kato’s preferred sound, a J-Pop take on American R&B, usually ends up being hit-or-miss, but even a strikeout beats the white flag that is this completely lame schlock. Yet now we come full circle and I admit Kato (or her handlers, ya know what I mean) are just doing what they know will move units, and a dumb ballad is a safe bet.
Kis-My-Ft2 “Everybody Go”
More Tokyo stories – walked by a music store in Shibuya promoting this song, with a booth set up and some lady talking about how radical these urchins sound. Had to really restrain myself from going all Secret Honor< on ’em.
Kuwata Keisuke “Let’s Try Again”
All I can find featuring Kuwata Keisuke is this 50-second clip of what appears to be a giant charity song which is really just a great way of playing “spot the J-Pop star.” I found Perfume! So yeah let’s just move on, I’m sure the version just with him is OK.
LOVE PSYCHEDELICO “It’s You”
Wikipedia tells me LOVE PSYCHEDELICO take a lot of cues from The Beatles and Led Zeppelin. I hear Avril Lavigne, and not good Avril Lavigne either.
This makes me so confused. The video above features no singing, but has lyrics showing right next to the woman doing the interpretative dancing. Searching for “両さん” brings me to the page for this recently released Japanese movie that is about what I presume is a perverted cop (I’ve seen the cartoon a few times, dudes a skeez). So like, will someone sing this on Music Station? Will it just be goofy dancing interspliced with film footage? Is this sneaky viral marketing I’m not getting? Regardless of what the hell is going on here, props to the YouTube community for slapping this with 22 dislikes…but I think ya’ll can do better. A hundred or bust.
The Red Hot Chili Peppers “The Adventures Of Rain Dance Maggie”
The majority of Southern California loves The Red Hot Chili Peppers to an absurd level, and let me tell ya do I have a complicated relationship with this group coming from SoCal. I loved these guys when I was in junior high…FUCKING LOVED these dudes to the point I once wrote a list about how they were on par with The Beatles. That long-lost document (thank goodness) may have been isolated to me, but nearly everyone around me then…and today…was just as in love with these dick-sock-wearin’ dudes as me. Then I grew older and stuff got complicated. I’m not cynical enough to just call everything they did garbage…I still can get behind “Under The Bridge” and “Other Side” amongst others…but the fan-boyish part of me died off when I realized the white-boy funk could get tiring really fast and that Anthony Kiedes is one of the worst lyricists on the planet. Overall, I’m left confused.
Which is why I can’t say much about “The Adventures Of Rain Dance Maggie” deeper than “this confirms every single thing I thought.” This sounds like what RHCP have been doing for a long time now and dear Jesus those lyrics, but I also hear everything 13-year-old me loved and as such I sit wondering…can I really hate this when part of me would have once compared this too “Hey Jude?” The group is in Japan for Summer Sonic, and I’m going to see them. Which…makes part of me really unexcited, but an adolescent version of me stupid excited.
Winner Of The Week – I guess Red Hot Chili Peppers.