Thursday, 23 June 2011

5-nin Girl Groups - They're Better than bigger groups

We all know that Japan has a thing for large girl groups, just look at AKB48 and their immense popularity. Also, there is Morning Musume, Idolling!! and PASSPO. There are plenty more larger groups out there, but right now these are the four I know the most about (well in terms of AKB48, I know little xD)

So, why is it that these groups are so popular, and what about the smaller groups within Japan?

Well, I guess it is all because of the 'cuteness' factor, and not so much the singing factor. In the case of AKB, it is all about the talent, but also about the sex appeal a girl has (hence their extreme popularity, because they went one step further than Morning Musume). In Japan, it's all about the face, and that determines the popularity of a group. Not their voices.

But it makes me wonder how a group like 9nine, C-ute and other 5-nin groups fare when they are competing with the bigger groups. In terms of C-ute, who started out as a 7-nin group, they were quite big, but are even more popular now as a 5-nin girl band. It's the same with 9nine. Even though they started off with 9 girls (hence the name), they seem to have become more popular as a smaller group.

I think this is because there is more diversity within each group when you have less members. There is a higher chance that your favourite will be picked for centre, or to get more lines, but there is also a bigger portion of screen time for them, giving you plenty of eye candy. This is something which bigger groups like Morning Musume and AKB48 can't do with the amount of members they have. I find it hard to see one of my favourite members of MoMosu most of the time because she is the least popular, and her screen time is taken over by the more popular members such as Reina Tanaka and Takahashi Ai.

And I don't even watch AKB48 PV's, but I can tell that they are filled with Maeda Atsuko, and that would make me feel slightly sickened, because she annoys me to the death.

Even though I really do like the bigger groups, I think it's better when they are 5-nin or less. Look at how much popularity S/mileage spawned, and when auditions were announced, the fans were outraged! It shows how much love there is towards the current 4-nin group, and adding someone new in may mess up the entire line up. It seems that because the group is smaller, there is more chemistry between the members as well as their fans, because there is less of them, and they can each become friends easily.

It's like Morning Musume. Once LinLin, JunJun and Kamei Eri graduated, I wanted at least one single out of the new 5-nin group before the 9th Generation came trotting along. I think that as a 5-nin group they would have worked really well together. There is great chemistry between them all, so they should have at least one song.

Okay, I'm rambling now.

My point is that I think that the smaller girl groups are better, because there is more spot light to be thrown around as well as the great chemistry between girls in their respective groups. I am not saying that there isn't great chemistry between the members of AKB48, Morning Musume, PASSPO or Idolling!!, because surely there is, but because these groups are so big, and with members who vary so much in age that there's a gap (this excludes PASSPO, they're all near enough the same age and great friends) it can cause some conflicts between both the members and the fans, but with a 5-nin group, especially when so close in age, there is more of a bond between them as there are so few, but they are truly closer than the bigger Idol groups.

Blaaah random rant thing >.>

Tuesday, 21 June 2011

9nine 'Natsu wanna say love U' - JPop takes on Kpop

When the PV came out for 9nine's new summer single, 'Natsu wanna say Love U', I thought that, like most other summer songs that have hit the stands (Momoiro Sparkling, Kikakke wa YOU, Shoujo Hikou, My Days For You etc etc...), Natsu wanna say love U would be cute, bubbly and overly summery like the pop tunes we have been getting lately.

It seems that I was wrong. Very wrong.

From the beginning, I can tell that this single is something I would hear from, say, Perfume or a K-pop group. It's rather robotic, and quite Electro on some levels, with a cute edge of pop added in there to give it that summery feeling.

Even the chorus, with its pop, summery tune, is catchy and fun. Listening to it, I think of the beach, and during a certain point in the song I swore there was a sound effect that sounded just like the sea.

I feel that the greatest thing about this single is that it has that K-pop influence to it, which may bring 9nine some much-needed recognition. As K-pop is a big hit in Japan right now, this single is perfect, and it makes me really happy that 9nine released it later than any of the other big girl groups in Japan, because it gives them a bigger chance with sales if Morning Musume or AKB48 aren't releasing singles at the same time as they are.

Their sound is refreshing for me, especially as I don't listen to K-pop, so to any K-pop lovers out there, give this single a chance! It's up-beat, summery and edgy - and a somewhat totally different tune to what I usually hear from 9nine - it's the perfect single for summer, one that I could listen to over and over again.

About the PV

Like the song, the PV is very summery and up-beat, and quit cute. There is a lot of edge to the dance shot scenes. All versions are airy, bright and summery, with fitting clothes (there are lots of costume changes for this song, it seems) and lots of colour. I especially love the Ice Cream Props that they use as ice creams, and the fact that they all wear wedges instead of heels.

There is some CGI, which again reminds me of something I would probably see in a K-pop PV (as well as the dance, among other things) and during certain close up scenes together, they're seen having random fun, and they look so natural their smiles are infectious! It looks like fun, so I want to try it, too!

A lot of thought has been put into the PV, the Dance Shot, the close up versions, props, clothes and the composition of this song. Hopefully, the sales for 9nine's latest single will sky rocket to number 1, just like PASSPO did on their official debut.

Good luck, 9nine! I love you! <3