Welcome to MELOS no Michi
an information and news blog dedicated to covering the latest news for: AKB48, SKE48, NMB48, HKT48, JKT48


AKB48 Is Looking for a Part-Time Member
Following OtonaAKB, AKB48 came up with a new form of temporary membership: part-time idol. Find out more about this new project here.
AKB48 Team 8 Makes Theater Debut
AKB48 Team 8 performed its first theater show on August 5. Get more information about the shonichi performance here!
SKE48 Announces 7th Generation Auditions
SKE48 is looking for new members and this time the fans will be part of the decision about who joins the group!
AKB48 37th Single Senbatsu Election - Final Results
AKB48 held its election for the 6th time and for the 1st time Watanabe Mayu won it. Check out the full results here!
Details on the AKB48 Group Pennant Race
The AKB48 Group teams will compete against each other in a new event, the AKB48 Group Pennant Race. Points will be awarded based on theater ticket applications, theater version handshake ticket sales and sousenkyo votes.
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31 July 2011

Eguchi Aimi's profile picture stolen

Terrible news! On AKB48's official blog Togasaki-san has posted that the profile picture of CG idol Eguchi Aimi has been stolen from the theater. It is unsure what exactly happened but it took place when the monthly photosets went on sale. During that time, the lobby of the AKB48 Theater is crowded to the max with people trading and it can get quite confusing and chaotic. That was probably how the thief managed to sneak out with the picture.

This is the first time a profile picture has been stolen from the AKB48 Theater, and Togasaki-san says it is the strong bond between the theater and the fans. He thinks the photo was stolen on impulse and hopes the photo will be returned to the theater. Printing a new picture is easy but there isn't any meaning in doing so.

The profile pictures of all AKB48 and SDN48 members are hung on this long corridor that leads from the entrance of the 7th floor to the lobby. Previously the pictures were hung without any protection. Framed of course. I can't remember when it was but sometime later they installed a glass barrier to prevent fingerprints on the glass frames. Aimi's picture is grouped with all the other 12gen Kenkyuuseis, which doesn't have a glass barrier from the pictures i'm seeing

Original post: http://ameblo.jp/akihabara48/entry-10970330734.html
Translation by: loveandcoffee
Today the photograph of "Eguchi Aimi" that was hung on AKB48 Theatre's wall was stolen.
Looks like it was stolen today when the monthly photosets went on sale.
I think it was an act due to a sudden impulse and the overexcitement at the moment,
and I think that surely in this very moment the culprit is regretting it.

If you are regretting it, please return it.
It would be easy to arrange another photograph to hang.
But there would be no meaning to do so.

So far, the framed photograph haven't been stolen even once, and I think this is the "proof" of the strong trust bond that exists between the theatre and the fans.

I would be glad if you returned it to the theatre.
And I believe that such a thing won't happen anymore.

Which brings me to the question. Why not Acchan?

Read more ...

29 July 2011

SKE48 [Pareo wa Emerald] 1st day sales

SKE48's 6th Single released yesterday to incredible success. Pareo wa Emerald 264 thousand copies sold on it's first day in the charts. Even though I thought the single was a step down from their 5th Single Banzai Venus too.

In comparison with SKE48's previous 2 singles, Banzai Venus sold 206k on it's 1st week, 60k less than Pareo's 1st day on the charts. 1!2!3!4! Yoroshiku! sold 119k for it's 1st week. And comparing with AKB48's singles, Sakura no Shiori sold 229k on it's 1st day. So SKE48 is in the same level AKB48 was in February last year. AKB48's sales started doubling from RIVER. Will the same happen for SKE48? I think it will.
Read more ...

NMB48 [Zetsumetsu Kurogami Shoujo] 1st week sales, bloomers are a no go

NMB48's debut single Zetsumetsu Kurogami Shoujo, just released last week, made quite a splash in the Oricon sales chart, selling an incredible 218 thousand copies and of course securing the 1st place in the weekly chart.

Zetsumetsu Kurogami Shoujo
Day 1: 131,654
Day 2: 15,719
Day 3: 7,532
Day 4: 50,240
Day 5: 3,736
Day 6: 3,751
Total: 218,441

This is an incredible feat for any artist. Not only did they achieve 1st place in the daily and weekly chart in their debut single, but this amount of sales makes them the female group with the highest debut sales in history. The previous holder was Kaoru Amane with her single "Taiyou no Uta" back in 2006 with 150k for it's 1st week.

NMB48 of course had the help of being part of the OOO48 umbrella, giving them a huge advantage in promotions. Nevertheless this sales is amazing. They were up against Korean super boyband TVXQ (known in Japan as Tohoshinki). Honestly I was quite worried when I heard who NMB was up against.

And of course not forgetting the main point of this entry for some, NMB48 would have to perform a full stage show in bloomers if they failed to clinch the 1st position for the weekly chart. But since they did, the bloomer show will not be happening.

OR SO WE THOUGHT. Turned out that during one of their stage shows they appeared in bloomers and performed Zetsumetsu for the fans as a thank you present. Well it's not a full show at least. An official apology by the NMB48 members about the surprise bloomer show has been posted up on the official website.

Official post: http://www.nmb48.com/news/etc/etc_2011_07_29_01.html
Thank you for always supporting NMB48.
Our debut single ‘Zetsumetsu Kurokami Shoujo’ managed to get the No 1 spot on Oricon and thanks to you all we achieved the best debut.
Thank you very much.
We were anxious that maybe people would not buy because they want to see the bloomers show, but we are very thankful that we got such an amazing debut that blows away all this (anxiety).
This is thanks to the support of you all. Thank you very much.
At this point, members and staff discussed and decided to perform only one song as a surprise with feelings of thankfulness to the fans who supported us in mind.
But afterwards we heard through the staff the opinions of many fans who supported us so that we do not have to wear bloomers. What we thought up might have put all your feelings to waste and we are very sorry for that.
Because we are doing our best with all power so that you continue to support us from now on too,
Yoroshiku onegaishimasu (sry, I never know how to find a good word for that…).

All NMB48 members

However despite me being happy for NMB48's incredible sales, I can't help but feel that they got it too easy. 218k sales for their debut single and also they have already participated in the highly popular annual show Kouhaku Uta Gassen, which only the most famous artists attend.
Read more ...

28 July 2011

SDN48 3rd gen Hayakawa Sayo withdraws

So only after around 2 months in SDN48, 3rd gen Hayakawa Sayo has decided to withdraw from the group. No reasons at all were given for her withdrawal.

Wait. Who? No seriously who is this girl? The only thing I know of her is that she is one of the 3rd generation members of SDN48. Other than that, well the profile pictures of the 3rd gens aren't even up on the official website yet. The 3rd gens had their stage debut a month or so ago but Hayakawa Sayo only appeared in the MC and did not perform any songs.

Well let's hope she doesn't regret her decision and finds success in whatever she wants to do now. Hayakawa Sayo is the center girl in the above picture.
Read more ...

24 July 2011

Team 4 Captain Announced + 2 Kenkyusei Promotions

Team 4 Member Oba Mina was announced as the Captain of Team 4 during the 2nd concert at Seibu Dome on July 23. Nicknamed Minarun, she is currently the oldest member of Team 4 at age 19.

In addition to Minarun's promotion, two 10gen Kenkyuuseis were also promoted to Team 4, bringing the member count of Team 4 to 12. The two are Abe Maria and Iriyama Anna.

Regarding the Kenkyuusei Janken preliminaries which Iriyama Anna won a slot, this was not seen beforehand and management has apologized. She will still be in the Kenkyuusei slot in the main tournament.
Abe Maria who did not win, will not be included in the main tournament as part of Team 4.

Congratulations to Oba Mina, Abe Maria, and Iriyama Anna!
Read more ...

AKB48 Concert [Yossha ~Ikuzo~! in Seibu Dome] Setlists

Yossha ~Ikuzo~! in Seibu Dome
All Right ~Lets Go~! in Seibu DOME
AKB48 with SKE48, SDN48, NMB48

Date: 22 July to 24 July
Location: Seibu Dome in Saitama

Today was the 2nd Day of AKB48's [Yossha Ikuzo] Concert in Seibu Dome. AKB48's 1st ever "dome" concert. A total of 155 members from AKB48, SKE48, NMB48 and SDN48 performed today.

1st Day Highlights
AKB48 22nd Single Flying Get 1st live performance and showing of PV.
NMB48 2nd gen Jo Eriko solo of Romance Kakurenbo
AKB48 1st Original Album Koko ni ita Koto medley
Majisuka short play

2nd Day Highlights
SDN48 3rd gen concert debut.
Acchan got out of breath after Flying Get performance due to hyperthermia from heatstroke. She was brought back to the backstage and rested until Seishun to Kizukanai Mama.
Majisuka short play

3rd Day Highlights
Janken Taikai position drawings.

Team 4 Captain has been decided. Team 4's Captain is Oba Mina!
Also 10 gen Kenkyuusei Abe Maria and Iriyama Anna has been promoted to Team 4!

DAY 1 (22 July)
M00 - Overture
M01 - Yankee Soul
M02 - Seishun to Kizukanai mama
M03 - Majijo Teppen Blues
M04 - Majisuka Rock 'n' Roll
M05 - Shoujotachi yo (Senbatsu)
M06 - High School Days (Team 4 + Kenkyuusei)
M07 - Wagamama Collection (Watanabe Mayu, Ota Aika, Sato Sumire, Matsui Jurina, Maeda Ami, Komori Mika)
M08 - Ningyo no Vacance (Takajo Aki, Nito Mioeno, Yokoyama Yui, Kasai Tomomi, Kitahara Rie, Sato Amina, Masuda Yuka)
M09 - Kaze no Yukue (Takahashi Minami, Minegeshi Minami, Oshima Yuko, Sashihara Rino, Kashiwagi Yuki, Kuramochi Asuka)
M10 - Iikagen no Susume (Katayama Haruka, Kojima Haruna, Shinoda Mariko, Akimoto Sayaka, Miyazawa Sae, Matsui Rena)
M11 - Kimi to Boku no Kankei (Maeda Atsuko, Itano Tomomi)
M12 - Renai Circus (Team B)
M13 - Boku ni Dekiru Koto (Team K)
M14 - Overtake (Team A)
M15 - Banzai Venus (SKE48)
M16 - Pareo wa Emerald (SKE48)
M17 - 1!2!3!4! Yoroshiku! (SKE48)
M18 - Zetsumetsu Kurogami Shoujo (NMB48)
M19 - Seishun no Lap Time (NMB48)
M21 - Yasai Uranai
M22 - Ougon Center (Team 4 + Kenkyuusei)
M23 - Anti (Team 4 + Kenkyuusei)
M24 - Lemon no Toshigoro (Kawaei Rina, Kojima Natsuki, Morikawa Ayaka, Naotori Wakana)
M25 - Miniskit no Yousei (Iwata Karen, Tano Yuka, Saeed Yokota Erena)
M26 - Romance Kakurenbo (Jo Eriko)
M27 - Everyday, Kachuusha (Senbatsu)
M28 - BINGO! (Team 4 + Kenkyuusei)
M29 - Namida Surprise
M30 - Kimi no Koto ga Suki Dakara
M31 - 10nen Zakura
M32 - Iiwake Maybe
M33 - Ponytail to Shushu
M34 - Heavy Rotation
-----Flying Get dance version PV shown-----
M35 - Flying Get (Senbatsu)

-----ENCORE, Flying Get - Akai Hachigatsu version PV shown-----
EN2 - Beginner
-----MC 8-----
EN3 - Dakishimecha Ikenai (Undergirls)
EN4 - Ice no Kuchizuke (Maeda Atsuko, Oshima Yuko, Shinoda Mariko, Itano Tomomi, Watanabe Mayu, Takahashi Minami)
-----MC 9-----
EN5 - Korekara Wonderland (all)
EN6 - Koko ni ita Koto (all)

Day 2 (23 July)
M00 - Overture
M01 - Flower (Maeda Atsuko)
M02 - Dear J (Itano Tomomi)
M03 - Fui ni (Itano Tomomi)
M04 - Kuchibiru Furezu (No Sleeves)
M05 - Cry (DiVA)
M06 - Hetappi Wink (Watarirouka Hashiritai 7)
M07 - Kakkowarui I Love You (French Kiss)
M08 - Shuumatsu Not Yet (Not Yet)
M09 - Nakinori Kakigoori (Not Yet)
M10 - Renai Circus (Team B)
M11 - Team B Oshi (Team B)
M12 - Minnasan mo go Issho ni (Team B)
M13 - Kanojo ni Naremasuka (Team K)
M14 - Boku ni Dekiru Koto (Team K)
M15 - Korogaru Ishi ni Nare (Team K)
M16 - AKB Sanjou (Team A)
M17 - Matenrou no Kyori (Team A)
M18 - Overtake (Team A)
M19 - Banzai Venus (SKE48)
M20 - Pareo wa Emerald (SKE48)
M21 - 1!2!3!4! Yoroshiku! (SKE48)
M22 - Zetsumetsu Kurogami Shoujo (NMB48)
M23 - Seishun no Lap Time (NMB48)
M25 - Yasai Uranai (Yasai Sisters)
M26 - Boku no Taiyou (Team 4 + Kenkyuusei)
M27 - Aitakatta (Team 4 + Kenkyuusei)
M28 - Everyday, Kachuusha
M29 - Korekara Wonderland
M30 - Yuuhi wo Miteiru ka?
M31 - BINGO!
M32 - Namida Surprise
M34 - Beginner
M35 - 10nen Zakura
M36 - Iiwake Maybe
M37 - Ponytail to Shushu
M38 - Heavy Rotation
-----Flying Get dance version PV shown-----
M39 - Flying Get (AKB48 Senbatsu)

EN1 - Yankee Soul
EN2 - Seishun to Kizukanai mama
EN3 - Majijo Teppen Blues
EN4 - Majisuka Rock 'n' Roll
-----MC 9-----
EN5 - Dakishimecha Ikenai (Undergirls)
-----MC 10-----
EN6 - Shoujotachi yo

Day 3 (24 July)
M00 - Overture
M01 - Shoujotachi yo (all)
M02 - High School Days (Team 4 + Kenkyuusei)
M03 - Overtake (Team A)
M04 - Renai Circus (Team B)
M05 - Boku ni Nekiru Koto (Team K)
-----MC 1-----
M06 - Flower (Maeda Atsuko)
M07 - Fui ni (Itano Tomomi)
M08 - Kimi to Boku no Kankei (Maeda Atsuko, Itano Tomomi)
M09 - Hetappi Wink (Watarirouka Hashiritai 7)
-----MC 2-----
M10 - Wagamama Collection (Watanabe Mayu, Ota Aika, Sato Sumire, Matsui Jurina, Maeda Ami, Komori Mika)
M11 - Ningyo no Vacance (Takajo Aki, Nito Mioeno, Yokoyama Yui, Kasai Tomomi, Kitahara Rie, Sato Amina, Masuda Yuka)
M12 - Kuchibiru Furezu (No Sleeves)
M13 - Kaze no Yukue (Takahashi Minami, Minegeshi Minami, Oshima Yuko, Sashihara Rino, Kashiwagi Yuki, Kuramochi Asuka)
M14 - Iikagen no Susume (Katayama Haruka, Kojima Haruna, Shinoda Mariko, Akimoto Sayaka, Miyazawa Sae, Matsui Rena)
M15 - Cry (DiVA)
M16 - Kakkowarui I Love You (French Kiss)
M17 - Naminori Kakigoori (Not Yet)
-----MC 3-----
M18 - Love Jump (Team B)
M19 - Team B Oshi (Team B)
M20 - Alive (Team K)
M21 - Korogaru ishi ni Nare (Team K)
M22 - AKB Sanjou (Team A)
M23 - Kurumi to Dialouge (Team A)
-----MC 4-----
M24 - Pareo wa Emerald (SKE48)
M25 - 1!2!3!4! Yoroshiku(SKE48)
M26 - Zetsumetsu Kurogami Shoujo (NMB48)
M27 - Seishun to Lap Time (NMB48)
M28 - Yuuhi wo Mite Iru ka?
M29 - Hito no Chikara (Undergirls)
-----MC 5-----
M30 - Oogoe Diamond
M31 - BINGO! (Team 4 + Kenkyuusei)
M32 - Aitakatta (all)
M33 - Namida Surprise
M34 - Kimi no Koto ga Suki Dakara
M36 - Beginner
M37 - 10nen Zakura
M38 - Iiwake Maybe
M39 - Ponytail to Shushu
M40 - Heavy Rotation (all)
-----Flying Get dance version PV shown-----
M41 - Flying Get

EN1 - Ice no Kichizuke (Eguchi Aimi (Sasaki Yukari in disguise) Maeda Atsuko, Oshima Yuko, Shinoda Mariko, Itano Tomomi, Watanabe Mayu, Takahashi Minami)
EN2 - Dakishimecha Ikenai (Undergirls)
-----MC 8-----
EN3 - Koko ni ita Koto (all)
EN4 - Everyday, Kachuusha (all)
-----Janken Taikai position drawings-----
EN5 - Aitakatta (all)
Read more ...

23 July 2011

Itano Tomomi [Fuini] 1st Week Sales

After topping the Oricon charts with nearly 51k units on the first day, Itano Tomomi clinched the #1 spot in the Oricon Weekly charts with her 2nd single [Fuini].

With a total of 90k units sold, [Fuini] hasn't sold as well as her debut single [Dear J] (which sold 163k units in the first week, just for comparison). Despite this, [Fuini] is in fact Tomochin's first number one single, so congratulations are in order!!

The lower sales are likely in part due to some tough competition with so many recent releases, including fellow AKB48 member Maeda Atsuko's much-anticipated solo debut. Moreover, the style and feel of Fuini is a significant change from Tomochin's debut single, aiming for a more mature R&B love song style.

I actually think this is a very strong single, but there's a lot of personal preference in there. Overall, sales were still strong, and Fuini has been selected to be featured in a CM for Samantha Thavasa (who incidentally styled Tomochin's outfits for this single).
Read more ...

22 July 2011

AKB48 Concert [Yossha ~Ikuzo~! in Seibu Dome] Merchandise

Yossha ~Ikuzo~! in Seibu Dome
All Right ~Lets Go~! in Seibu DOME
AKB48 with SKE48, SDN48, NMB48

Date: 22 July to 24 July
Location: Seibu Dome in Saitama

AKB48's ameblo blog has revealed merchandises available for purchase during the group's first ever dome concert in Seibu dome! The concert which starts from tomorrow and ends on July 24th will be the group's second concert. The products have already been launched today and fans will be able purchase them throughout the concert. And this time fans will get to buy the products of not only the three teams but also of the newly formed Team 4!

Official post: http://ameblo.jp/akihabara48/entry-10959953124.html

The products that will be available during this concert:

AKB48 Items
  • Towel [1 type]: 1,500yen
  • Shopping bag: 500yen
  • T-shirt [S - M - L - XL]: 2,500yen
  • T-Shirt [Kid's Size]: 2,000yen
  • Tank Top [M - L]: 2,500yen
  • Paper Fans [Avalaible in Team A, K, B and 4]: 500yen
  • Clear file [4 types]: 500yen
  • AKB48 Times [4 types]: 100yen
  • Seibu Dome limited photos [Team A, K, B, 4 - random]: 1000yen
There will be individual goods available as well:
  • Hand Towel (Seibu Dome Ver.) [58 types]: 500yen
  • Tattoo [41 types]: 500yen
Fans will also be able to buy cheering products such as official team neon sticks (including Team 4) at 1,500yen, glow bracelets [4 types] at 300yen, twirl scarfs [1 type] at 1000yen and wristbands (4 Kinds) at 600yen. Of course to beat the heat of the scorching weather, they can buy Hiehie towel (1 kind) priced at 600yen.

But that's not the only treat the fans will get. Beside the AKB products, they will be able to purchase SKE48 and NMB48 products as well.

 SKE48 Items
  • Muffler towel [1 type]: 2,000yen
  • Cellphone strap  [1 type]: 1,000yen
  • Circular fan  [1 type]: 300yen
NMB48 Items
  • Opera glasses  [1 type]: 600yen
  • Shoulder bag  [1 type]: 600yen 
  • Photofile  [1 type]: 1,200yen
  • Logo Tumbler  [2 type (blue, pink)]: 1,500yen 
  • Muffler Towel  [1 type]: 2,500yen 
  • Penlight  [1 type]: 1,500yen 
  • Logo Sticker Set [1 type]: 500yen

With all these collectables available for the 48 fans, it came to as no surprise that the tank top was already sold out today. The dome will surely see a huge amount of fans lining up to purchase their favorite groups merchandise.
Read more ...

21 July 2011

NMB48 [Zetsumetsu Kurogami Shoujo] First Day Sales

NMB48 released their debut single Zetsumetsu Kurogami Shoujo on July 20 managing to sell 131,654 copies on its first day. This got them the Number 1 spot on Oricon Daily ranking for the first day.

131,654 is a really amazing number for first day sales and personally I am surprised and very happy for the girls. Surely they profit from AKB48's current popularity, but it is still a nice accomplishment.

But the interesting part comes now. If NMB48 manages to get the No 1 spot for weekly charts as well, they will get rewards from comedians sharing the same agency with them. If they fail to do it, they will have to perform a whole stage show in bloomers instead.

Getting the top spot on the weekly charts will be a tough job considering that NMB48 has to stand up against popular Korean boyband Tohoshinki. Not surprising, sales have already dropped to 15,719 copies for the second day, bringing total sales to 147,373.

Read more ...

20 July 2011

AKB48 24th Single Janken Tournament - SKE48 Preliminary Results

SKE48's preliminary round for AKB48's 2nd Janken Tournament has just ended. 57 members battled it out for 5 slots. Some very surprising and also not so surprising results. And the five winners are:

Block A: Kuwabara Mizuki (Team S)
Block B: Wakabayashi Tomoka (Team KII)
Block C: Takeuchi Mai (Team E)
Block D: Matsui Jurina (Team S)
Block E: Sato Mieko (Team KII)

Katsuo power wins!!!! Yay! Not that glad about B and C Block though... I wanted Matsurina and Akarin to win. Jurina wins of course. Can't have her not inside an AKB Single. And finally I am very glad for Mieko. She is a nice girl, talented singer, and plays an important older sister role is KII. She deserves some attention for once.

Results are very balanced. Each Team has at least 1 representative. unlike NMB48 which was 4 Kenkyuusei and 1 Team N member. Hmmmmm. S, KII, E, S, KII. A pattern?

Full results of all pairings:

And with that the 70 members taking part in the AKB48 24th Single Janken Tournament on September 20th in Nippon Budoukan have been decided. Are you excited for it?

Read more ...

18 July 2011

Mariko Shinoda to appear in new comedy film

It has been recently announced that AKB48's Mariko Shinoda would be casted in a comedy movie for the very first time! She would be involved with the new comedy film from NHK, titled [サラリーマンNEO 劇場版 (笑)] (Salaryman NEO Gekijyouban (warai)).

The movie is based on a previous comedy drama, and the story takes place in beer company NEO Beer, where it depicts the different employees of the company. In the show, Mariko sama would be taking on the role of a regular receptionist by day, and yet holding on to a mysterious job by night. What's going to happen from there? We could only find out by watching the film.

Mariko sama has expressed her excitement for this, as she said she had 'always wanted to be part of a comedy as she loves it so much.' She hopes that the movie would get the support of the fans, as it has been the crystal of hard work from the cast and crew galore.

Adding on to her portfolio as an actress, this comedy would certainly show a different side of her. I personally thought she did really well in the Getsu9 drama, Taisetsu na Koto wa Subete Kimi ga Oshiete Kureta. This show would be something to look forward to.

Check out the short preview of the movie below!

Read more ...

AKB48 x Hello Kitty Collaboration

Two of Japan's biggest icons, AKB48 and Hello Kitty, will be working together. They will be introducing a new series of products called "AKB48 x Hello Kitty".

Products sold are mostly stationaries and other novelties like notebooks, files and towels. Each product will come in Team A, Team K and Team B versions. (no Team 4? what's with that?). These products will only be sold in specific Sanrio stores in Japan.

They will go on sale some time in early august, specific date not announced. However at the Sanrio Puroland you can get them earlier starting July 26th, where the product launch is taking place. Several AKB48 members are to attend the product launch, no specific names yet.

Wow I didn't know the Hello Kitty craze is still on in Japan. It ended like 10 years ago here in Singapore. I am told that Hello Kitty goods are incredibly expensive. Hold on to your wallets!
Read more ...

Itano Tomomi's [Fuini] - 1st Day Sales + Review

A couple of days back, AKB48's Itano Tomomi dropped her 2nd single as a soloist, ふいに(Fuini), on the charts, and came in #1 on the Oricon Daily Chart with close to 51k units sold. Congratulations to her!

Although Tomochin managed to come in #1 on the charts in the first day, it is noticeable that this single has not sold as well as her 1st one, Dear J. To put this into perspective, here's a comparion for the sales of both singles up till now:

Dear J
Day 1:   86,681
Day 2:   26,404
Day 3:   12,085
Day 4:   10,493

Day 1:   50,874
Day 2:   15,589
Day 3:   6,940
Day 4:   5,169

So, why is it not selling as well? Well, for one, Dear J was highly anticipated, as it was the very first production of the first soloist of the top selling group in Japan, AKB48. This could be one reason contributing to why Fuini not doing as well. Still, it is a pretty good result for her, so no complaints there.

I had the chance to check out the tracks on the single, and here's my opinion on the 2nd single for Tomochin below. Overall I think it is not too bad, especially with a powerful title track. It really adds on to the diva-like flavour and image that Hori Pro wants for Tomochin. (3/5)

Fuini (ふいに)
The good: A really charismatic title track, the song made use of a heavy electro backbeat against the vocals, which made it something catchy to listen to. Also, the chorus made a good climax for the song. My favourite for the single.
The bad: With Dear J, I thought this single would have a title track of a different flavour. While the song is good, it would be better to hear a song of a different sort. Too much repetition could make her a artiste that is seen as inversatile.
The extra: Check out the PV for the song if you can! I thought the video was pretty nicely produced. The appeal comes from the PV showing a more mature side of Tomochin.

Come on!
The good: The b-side of the single. It can be heard that this song is influenced from our western neighbours, with a slightly more hip-hop like feel to it.
The bad: The song lacks somewhat a special flavour to be memorable. Also, it is still quite generic to be deemed as a great song.

Boku no Sei(僕のせい)
The good: A slowed tempo ballad, this song does a great job featuring Tomochin's vocals as a whole. Filled with emotions, the number is packaged well, with the piano and acoustic guitar complimenting the singing. A nice way to end off Type A single.
The bad: There could be more variations to the song. I felt like the song could do with more built up and a better climax. Otherwise, the song is not too shabby.

Don't Miss it!
The good: The B-side to the Type B version of the single, the mid tempo song is pretty much a energiser to the tracklist. Very upbeat and catchy to listen to, it ends off well in a uplifting manner.
The bad: Again, another generic song that is not memorable. I probably would not scroll to the song intentionally.
The extra: In this version of the single, it comes with a DVD containing Tomochin having an interview in English. She sounds funny, but I do appreciate her effort for trying (: Some fun to look at.

Tsuki no Inori(月の祈り)
The good: Yet another slowed tempo ballad, this song gives more emphasis to the sadder side of the listeners. The emotions can be felt stronger, and the feelings passed on clearer. A good song in my opinion.
The bad: There could be more opportunities to showcase Tomochin's vocals here. In this song it was rather flooded by the effects. Otherwise, it is something worth listening to.

Dark Side
The good: Star wars? Of course not. This song found in the theater edition of the single gives off a sexy vibe, which is something quite unique in that sense. Sounds like a potential stage song.
The bad:It is quite difficult to find anything wrong for this song, since the feel given off is very unique on its own. Overall a special song to look out for.

So there it is! Do remember to check out the songs for yourself. And as much as possible, support original, support the girls! :)
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17 July 2011

Team YJ7 vs Team YM7 - Round Updates

The battle will between Team YJ7 (Weekly Young Jump) and Team YM7 (Young Magazine) heats up as the two teams continue to compete in a variety of rounds.

Round 4's theme has been decided as Special Skills Movie Battle, aka the girls will show off their special skills in a video. The starting date has yet to be decided, but stay tuned.

To refresh your memory:

Team YJ7:
Minegishi Minami, Kitahara Rie, Yokoyama Yui, Oota Aika, Sato Amina, Yamauchi Suzuran, Ichikawa Miori
Team YM7:
Sashihara Rino, Kasai Tomomi, Takajo Aki, Miyazaki Miho, Sato Sumire, Komori Mika, Takeuchi Miyu

Official website: http://www.akb48-yj7-ym7.com/pc_index.html

3 days ago, Round 3 - Radio Battle in All Night Nippon concluded and the results were revealed on the same night.

Team YJ7: 34,256 votes
Team YM7: 54,849 votes

As it turns out, YM7 wins again. They were also the winners for Round 1 - First Impressions Battle, where the results were:

Team YJ7: 109,667 votes
Yeam YM7: 120,071 votes

The only round YJ7 has won was Round 2 - Karaoke Movie Battle.

Team YJ7: 131,859 votes
Team YM7: 121,834 votes

With this, the current total vote count for both teams are as such:

Team YJ7: 275,782 (1 win)
Team YM7: 296,754 (2 wins)

YJ7 will need to buck up and win the next round if they want to stay in the competition. YM7 has 21k votes more. I've said that YM7 would win because of the popularity imbalance between the members of each team. In fact, from the profile page on the battle website you can see who they were marketing as the "main" of the team. With the 3rd Senbatsu Elections, Rie, at #13, is now supposedly the most popular member of YJ7 instead of Miichan. Meanwhile, Sasshii, the "main" of YM7 is at #9. I'm still waiting to be proved wrong, but can it happen?

As a sidenote, it's ironic how Rie was the center of Team YJ last time and then she ranked below both Chiyuu and Miichan (who were also in YJ) in the 2nd senbatsu elections. This time Miichan was expected to bring it for YJ7 and Rie outranked her. No offence as a Rie oshi, I love them both. What i'm thinking is more of... some kind of curse with being YJ's main? 

Which brings me to the fact that there still doesn't seem to be any sign that the two teams will get their own songs like Team YJ and PB did in the past as part of the battle. I'm hoping it will happen. \o\
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AKB48 24th Single Janken Tournament - NMB48 Preliminary Results

Yesterday, July 16, NMB48 held a Janken tournament at Zepp Osaka in front of 600 fans to determine the 5 girls that will participate at the AKB48 24th Single Janken Tournament (September 20) as NMB48's representatives.

As expected of Janken, the results turned out quite surprising. The five winners are:

Block A: Yogi Keira (2nd Generation Kenkyuusei)
Block B: Yamaguchi Yuuki (Team N)
Block C: Shimada Rena (2nd Generation KKS)
Block D: Hikawa Ayame (1st Generation KKS)
Block E: Fujita Runa (2nd Generation KKS)

So 4 out of the 5 spots go to Kenkyuusei, while the only Team N member who made it is the one that was just recently promoted. That is Janken!

Full results of all pairings:

I had the chance to see the event live at Zepp Osaka and I have to say it was a great event. Apart from the tournament the audience also got to see performances by both 1st and 2nd Generation members.

Unfortunately, I am not that happy about the overall results. It is great that one of my favourite girls, Yamaguchi Yuuki, made it but I cannot say the same about three 2nd Generation Kenkyuusei making it. The 2nd Generation just recently joined and they haven't even performed a theater show yet. In contrast to that the 1st Generation girls have been working hard for almost a year now, so I was rooting for them. But this is Janken, it does not always work how you want it to.

Team N Captain Yamamoto Sayaka consoling fellow Teammate Shinohara Kanna.

Next preliminary round is tomorrow 18 July for the AKB48 Kenkyuuseis. It will take place in the AKB48 Tehater. We are sure to get some more surprising results in the battles to come.
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16 July 2011

AKB48 24th Single Janken Tournament Preliminary Rounds

More info about AKB48's 24th Single Janken Tournament.

Unlike what I posted previously, only 3 AKB48 Kenkyuuseis will be taking part in the main tournament at Nippon Budokan. Just like SKE48 and NMB48, the members will go through a preliminary round to decide which members will take part in the main tournament on 20th of September. SKE48 and NMB48 will have 5 slots each by the way.

All 3 preliminary groups have done a draw at their respective theaters some days ago. I made a romanised bracket chart, check the images below to see which member will go against who. Click the images to view it in full size. And feel free to spread them around (but with credit of course).

NMB48's preliminary round takes place today in 4 hours! Are you excited?

Preliminary Rounds Schedule

16 July 2011: NMB48 in Zepp Osaka

18 July 2011: AKB48 Kenkyuusei in AKB48 Theater

20 July 2011: SKE48 in Ichinomiya Hall

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AKB48 x H.I.S 3

AKB48 will be collaborating with travel agency company H.I.S again for the 3rd time. (Wait 3? The 2nd one totally slipped under my radar). The CM will have 5 different versions set to air starting 13th July. In other words they are already out.

The members taking part in this CM are Takahashi Minami, Oshima Yuko, Watanabe Mayu, Kitahara Rie, Takajo Aki, Oba Mina and Kenkyuusei Abe Maria

For the 1st CM, the song Ikitakatta (i want to go), a word play on AKB48's Aitakatta, was used as the CM song. For the 2nd, Hito no Chikara from AKB48's 21st Single Everyday, Kachuusha. (really this completely slipped under my radar). This time, the song used is Dakishimecha Ikenai, one of the B-sides of AKB48's upcoming Single Flying Get.

Check out Takamina's version of the CM. The other versions are in the uploader's YouTube Channel

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SKE48 to open the rollercoaster Takabisha

8 SKE48 members will be attending the opening event of Fuji-Q Highland's newest rollercoaster Takabisha (たかびしゃ) on July 16th at 10:30PM. Also attending the opening is comedy duo Vetoben.

The attending SKE48 members are:
Team S: Ono Haruka, Matsui Jurina
Team KII: Ishida Anna, Mukaida Manatsu
Team E: Ueno Kazumi, Kaneko Shiori, Kimoto Kanon, Nakamura Yuka

The event (but not the coaster) is free admission. The 8 members will have a short talk on the stage right in front of the coaster, before taking a ride on the coaster and then give their impressions of it afterwards.

Meaning "dominant" in English, Takabisha holds the word record for the steepest roller coaster, featuring a 43 meter 121° drop that is sure to make all but the bravest scream their lungs out. The previous record was held by Timber Drop rollercoaster in Fraispertuis City Park in France, which was only 113° steep. Riders will actually experience weightlessness during the 2 second dive.

However the most impressive thing about the Takabisha has got to be it's price tag. The ride costs an impressive 3 billion yen, or 37 million USD, to build. Tickets are priced at 1000yen, meaning it needs to have 3 million tickets sold in order to pay back.

Check out some pictures of the coaster here:

As well as a video of the ride.

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14 July 2011

NMB48 announces 2nd Gen 1st Stage and 1st Concert

On July 13th, NMB48 announced the first stage for its 2nd Generation. From August 13 on, they will remake Team A 1st Stage [Party ga Hajimaru yooriginally performed 2005-2006.

Another major announcement was made the same day. Exactly one year after NMB48 made its debut at AKB48 Tokyo Aki Matsuri (October 9, 2010), the group will have its first concert in NHK Osaka Hall.

Personally I am not very excited about the 2nd Generation doing A1. A1 has been remade quite a few load of times already, and SKE48 Kenkyuusei are still doing it. Sure it is a relatively easy stage to start off but I was hoping for some other stage that has not been redone yet.
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AKB48 22nd Single [Flying Get] tracklist is out

Now that I have some free time...

The tracklist of AKB48's new Single Flying Get, to be released of August 24th, has been released.

The title track Flying Get is being used as the opening and ending theme for the golden time slot drama Hanazakari no Kimitachi e〜 Ikemen☆ Paradise〜 (Hana Kimi), which started airing on Fuji TV last Sunday. Senbatsu members for this Single was selected by an election back in June.

The common B-side song is Dakishimecha Ikenai, used as the theme song for AKB48's 3rd collaboration CM with travel agency HIS. TYPE A's exclusive B-side song is Seishun to Kizukanai mama, the ending theme for AKB48's recently ended yankee drama Majisuka Gakuen 2. TYPE B's is Aisu no Kuchizuke, the song used in the collaboration CM with Ezaki Glico (the one with CG Idol Eguchi Aimi).. And finally the Theater ver. exclusive song is Yasai Sister's Yasai Uranai for the collaboration CM with Kagome.

As for the DVDs, Each version of the Single (except theater of course) will get a PV each of the 3 songs on the CD. The PV for Flying Get has been revealed to be a drama titled [Akai Hachigatsu ~ Choujou Kessen] (Red August ~ Battle for the top), with a total of 51 mins in 3 different versions. The drama is said to have an eastern style fighting theme.

TYPE A will get all 3 versions, the [Flying Get part], which is the main PV and is approximately 18 mins long, the [Drama part] which includes the battle scenes and others, and finally the [Dancing part], of Flying Get. TYPE B will only get the [Flying Get part], but will also include a teaser preview of the drama in TYPE A, as well as a 27 mins long documentary of the AKB48 3rd Senbatsu Election.

OOOHHHHH First girls in helicopters (RIVER), then girls in tanks (Pinocchio Gun), and now we have girls in armor wielding swords spears and bows. This is going to be epic no matter what. SO EXCITE!!!!

Flying Get
Release Date: 24 August 2011
01. Flying Get
02. Dakishimecha Ikenai
03. Seishun to Kizukanai Mama
04. Flying Get (off vocal ver.)
05. Dakishimecha Ikenai (off vocal ver.)
06. Seishun to Kizukanai Mama (off vocal ver.)
01. Akai Hachigatsu ~Choujou Kessen (Flying Get Ver.)
02. Dakishimecha Ikenai (Music Video)
03. Seishun to Kizukanai Mama (Music Video)
04. Akai Hachigatsu ~Choujou Kessen (Drama Ver.)
05. Flying Get (Dancing Ver.)
01. Flying Get
02. Dakishimecha Ikenai
03. Aisu no Kuchizuke
04. Flying Get (off vocal ver.)
05. Dakishimecha Ikenai (off vocal ver.)
06. Aisu no Kuchizuke (off voccal ver.)
01. Akai Hachigatsu ~Choujou Kessen (Flying Get Ver.)
02. Dakishimecha Ikenai Music Video
03. Aisu no Kuchizuke Music Video
04. 3rd Senbatsu Election Documentary (26min. long)
05. Akai Hachigatsu ~Choujou Kessen (Preview)
Theater ver
01. Flying Get
02. Dakishimecha Ikenai
03. Yasai Uranai
04. Flying Get (off vocal ver.)
05. Dakishimecha Ikenai (off vocal ver.)
06. Yasai Uranai (off vocal ver.)

Senbatsu - Flying Get (フライングゲット)
AKB48 Team A: Maeda Atsuko, Shinoda Mariko, Kojima Haruna, Takahashi Minami, Sashihara Rino,Takajo Aki, Kuramochi Asuka
AKB48 Team K: Oshima Yuko, Itano Tomomi, Miyazawa Sae, Minegeshi Minami, Akimoto Sayaka, Yokoyama Yui
AKB48 Team B: Kashiwagi Yuki, Watabane Mayu, Kitahara Rie, Kasai Tomomi, Sato Amina, Masuda Yuka
SKE48 Team S: Matsui Rena, Matsui Jurina

Undergirls - Dakishimecha Ikenai (抱きしめちゃいけない)
AKB48 Team A: Nakagawa Haruka, Ota Aika, Oya Shizuka, Maeda Ami
AKB48 Team K: Umeda Ayaka, Nito Moeno, Matsui Sakiko, Fujie Reina
AKB48 Team B: Hirajima Natsumi, Miyazaki Miho, Komori Mika, Sato Sumire
AKB48 Team 4: Oba Mina, Ichikawa Miori
SKE48 Team S: Oya Masana, Suda Akari
SKE48 Team KII: Takayanagi Akane, Hata Sawako
NMB48 Team N: Yamamoto Sayaka

Seishun to Kitsukanai Mama (青春と気づかないまま)
Currently unknown

Aisu no Kuchizuke (アイスのくちづけ)
Currently unknown

Yasai Uranai (アイスのくちづけ)
Currently unknown
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13 July 2011

Major Announcement


It brings me great sadness to say this, but MELOS no Michi is in trouble. I will be conscripted to the army in a couple of months, for a couple of years. And if you look at who is writing the posts, 75% is done by me. So that is a big problem. _chinpingpong is also going to be conscripted, and kieyuku is already struggling to cope with her studies. So that just leaves us with Miss Moonlight, our NMB48 newswriter, who is in university and also busy with her studies.

For a few weeks now I have been going around to other people I know and asking them, but to no avail. Thus I have no choice but to announce it here. I call out for help from my readers out there. This blog needs your help. Desperately. Anybody with a passion for writing, want to expand your OOO48 knowledge, or just willing to help write for the blog please email me.


Minimum Requirements
- Must be an AKB48 fan (obviously).
- Must be able to write well.
- That's all. No really it is.

If there are no applicants then I will have no choice but to close down this blog, something that I really do not want. I created this blog back in 2009 because back then apart from the forums, there was only 1 other English site for AKB48 info. Now there are plenty, but I still do not wish to see my dream, my creation, and inevitably my life, die.

I'm not asking for spectacular English writing skills, just acceptable would be good. I'm not even adding to the requirements that you have to know all the members or all their songs. When I started this blog I was very noob, only knowing the main 12 members of AKB48. But over the course of 2 years of blogging and researching, I now know quite a lot about the OOO48 umbrella, and can name 80% of all the OOO48 girls. So yeah you know have to be knowledgeable on them to join this blog.

News sources will be provided by me. Post formats and all the html code that comes with it have been saved and all you need to do is copy it over and insert the text. If you don't know how to write it then just look at the other posts on the blog, change the words around and your done. It's really not that hard.

I don't have much time left so if you are planning to join, do it fast.
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10 July 2011

Happy 20th Birthday Acchan~! A short story about AKB48's little Flower

Today, July 10th 2011, is the 20th birthday of AKB48's dearest Maeda Atsuko! Congratulations!
A change from the usual news, today I will share with all of you a short story about our most beloved Acchan. The struggles she faced to get to where she is now.

One of the few surviving 1st gen members left in AKB, she joined the group at the young age of 14 years old. Acchan was quite a reserved girl and actually never wanted to be an idol. She admitted that the only reason why she decided to audition for AKB48 was because Akimoto Yasushi's name was on the poster. That was her first time auditioning for anything.

A normal girl-next-door with no special talent or experience in entertainment and auditioning, it was amazing she managed to get in. Suddenly she found herself given the lead role in AKB48's 1st major Single (and 3rd overall) Aitakatta. From then on her popularity skyrocketed and she became known as the face of AKB48, taking the center of most of the group's Singles.

However Acchan at that time didn't really like being the center. In Team A's 2nd Stage [Aitakatta], she was given the lead of the unit song Nagisa no CHERRY, with Minegishi Minami, Masuyama Kayano, Hirajima Natsumi as the backing dancers and backing vocalists. Only Acchan had lines in the song.

Then at the end of Team A's 2nd Stage, in front of all the fans, the girls were made to say the stuff they didn't like. Some members said "I didn't like being behind Acchan". Acchan herself voiced out her opinions and said "I didn’t want to do 'Nagisa no Cherry'". It helped relieve the massive amount of pressure on her back, and strengthened her friendship with the other members.

Fast forward to Oogoe Diamond, AKB48's 10th Single. SKE48 finished auditions not so long ago. All of a sudden, 11 year old Matsui Jurina was selected to sing beside Acchan in a double center. Both fans and members were shocked alike. That's not all, the cover of Oogoe Diamond was a solo shot of Jurina for all versions. This was Acchan's biggest challenge yet, and since. She started to worry but after some talk with Aki-P, she managed to pull herself together.

Fast forward some more to July 2009, AKB48's 1st Senbatsu General Election. Of course Acchan won. This boosted her sprits, seeing the more and more fans were acknowledging her.

But that's not the point I want to talk about. Throughout the years as the center of AKB48, she has also gathered qutie a large number of haters who are tired of Acchan in the center. They wanted change. The top 2 was between Acchan and Yuko. When about to announce which of them would take the 2nd place, there was an Acchan call by the haters. They didn't want her as the top any more.

And they got their wish. A full year later at AKB48's 2nd Senbatsu General Election, Yuko overthrew Acchan's throne by a just 600 votes. (597 to be exact, 31448 to 30851).

Acchan naturally was devastated. For the first time, she was not the top. She felt that she didn't deserve to be the top. That was what she felt at that time. However this only strengthened her resolve. Her dream. Back to 2011, the 3rd Senbatsu General Election just 2 months ago. This time, Acchan managed to get back her position as the center. Just like I thought, the only member who could be AKB48's face is Acchan. The one that we know and love. Nobody, I repeat NOBODY, can ever substitute for her.

2 weeks later, Acchan's 1st solo Single Flower was released with much anticipation. It was a hit with 100k copies sold in it's debut day. It's amazing how much Acchan has grown since the day she debuted on stage back on December 8th, 2005. Acchan was often called emotionless back then because of her lack of feeling and energy in her performance. But look at her right now. Flower is just brimming with emotion. Her dancing too, while still lacking compared to the others, has improved greatly. Acchan may not be my oshimen, not even in my top 10, but I still feel damn proud of her.

Looking back at it now, it kinda feels like Aki-P planned all this since the start in order to develop and blossom this little seed of his into a beautiful Flower, and be one of Japan's most iconic individuals. All the challenges like her being suddenly pushed to the center, the confessions during Team A 2nd Stage, Oogoe Diamond, the 3 Senbatsu General Elections, all that seems to be planned just for Acchan.

Hanazakari no Kimitachi e〜 Ikemen☆ Paradise〜 (hana kimi), a drama which Acchan takes the lead role in, will start airing today evening. Do remember to watch it!
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09 July 2011

DiVA's [Cry] TV CM revealed

The TV CM for DiVA's 2nd Single Cry has been uploaded to DiVA's official YouTube channel! Check it out below!

My comments so far:
- Omg Umechan why are you so awesome
- Liking the song much more than Tsuki no Uragawa.
- Definitely not liking the olive colored costumes. Olive is an ugly colour.
- Olive nail polish too. eeeeeewwwww.
- The horizontal lens flare/ reflection is getting on my nerves.
- Other than that the PV looks promising. The tree and sky in the back is nice.
- Can't wait for the full PV!
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08 July 2011

GROUPON x AKB48, SKE48, NMB48. A new election?

AKB48, SKE48 and NMB48 (yes all three!) will be working with GROUPON Japan, a deal-of-the-day website that features discounted gift certificates. The campaign website will open July 9th (tomorrow) at 10:00AM JPT.

GROUPON Japan official website: http://www.groupon.jp/
Campaign website: http://www.groupon.jp/campaign/48/

The concept of this CM is "Everybody picks, everybody makes". For this campaign, the members participating in the CM as well as the theme of the CM will be chosen by the fans in the website. Members from AKB48, SKE48 and NMB48 are available for vote. Not mentioned if that includes the Kenkyuuseis. Number of members has also not been revealed.

There will be 2 rounds of voting. The first round is to choose the members for the CM, and will end on 23 July.
Then several version of the CM will be made and uploaded into the website. The second round is for the fans to choose which of the few CMs will be the one broadcast on TV.

The song that will be used in the CM is Seishun to Kizukanai Mama, the ending theme for AKB48's just ended drama Majisuka Gakuen 2.

So unlike the Senbatsu elections where you have to buy a copy of the Single to vote, in this campaign all you have to do is just click. This makes it fairer to rank the members as (i'm guessing) 1 vote per day, per IP Address. The top 10 is pretty much standard already, question is how many more and which members will be allowed in the CM.
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AKB48 members as HP Support Angels

Is your laptop getting slow and unresponsive? *nods* Thinking of getting a better laptop or desktop? *nods* But you always thought "Nah it's too bothersome" or you just plainly don't have the money. *nods* *nods*


This is the 3rd time AKB48 will be collaborating with HP, the previous 2 were in Spring and Winter 2010. This time round the participating members are called "HP Support Angels". And the member participating are
Team A: Takajo Aki, Sashihara Rino, Kuramochi Asuka, Maeda Ami
Team K: Matsui Sakiko, Oshima Yuko, Miyazawa Sae
Team B:Sato Sumire, Kashiwagi Yuki

The CM takes place in the future year 20XX. The members are working in HP's newest office located in THE SKY.  Yuko is the Master, Yukirin is working at the "Visual Create Section", and finally Akicha, Sasshi and Sae are in the "Hyper Music Section". The rest of the members are walking randomly in the background.

The official website has more fun stuff to play with
Official Collaboration Website: http://h50146.www5.hp.com/directplus/personal/promotions/others/support_angels/

The CM will air in Japan starting July 9th.

Side note: Yeah that's some intresting guitar playing right there Sae, with your hands behind the guitar...
CM Making: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=_hNlhS0ctyQ&feature=youtu.be

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DiVA's 2nd Single titled [Cry] + Covers, Tracklist

Tracklist and covers for DiVA's 2nd Single have been revealed. Titled [Cry], it will go on sale on August 10th and like all OOO48 releases now there are multiple versions to collect, a total of 4. TYPE A, B, and C will have different coupling track, and the Theater version will have all the songs but without the instrumentals. Theater version will also include 1 (one) ticket to a handshake event

Just like in their debut single Tsuki no Uragawa, an AKB song has been "DiVA-ised". Previously it was Blue Rose from Team K 2nd Stage [Seishun Girls]. This time the song used is the popular  MARIA also from Team K, but from the 3rd Stage [Nounai paradise].

As you can see in the picture, DiVA is still 4 persons. Auditions for the 6 more members (read here) have not started yet. However in TYPE C's DVD is "Introduction to Audition". Could this be the details of the audition? The dates and places and whatnot. We will only know on August 10th.

Release Date: 10 August 2011

01. Cry
02. No way out
03. Cry (off vocal)
04. No way out (off vocal)
01. Cry (Video Clip)
02.Cry Making Movie
01. Cry
02. Chika Suidou
03. Cry (Instrumental)
04. Chika Suidou (Instrumental)
01. Cry (Video Clip)
02. Recording Scene Special Movie
01. Cry
02. MARIA -DiVA ver.-
03. Cry(Instrumental)
04. MARIA -DiVA ver.-(Instrumental)
01. Cry (Video Clip)
02. Introduction to Audition
01. Cry
02. No way out
03. Chika Suidou
04. MARIA -Original Track DiVA ver.-
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06 July 2011

No Sleeves [Kuchibiru Furezu...] 1st Week Sales

Following the last update where the ladies of No Sleeves sold 42k units of their 7th single, Kuchibiru Furezu, on the first day on the Oricon charts, the Oricon Weekly charts has also been updated, where the trio kept their #3 position, ranking in after Hey!Say!Jump! and KARA.

The final sales count for the week tallied up to close to 100k sales, which is the best weekly result for the subunit so far. To put this into context, their 6th single Answer, which was released back in March, sold about 82k in its first week, while the 5th single Kimishika sold about 31k.

So as we can see, the popularity of AKB48's subunits grows with the main group, though it might not be at a steep rate. They're still not yet at Not Yet's level of 150k sales in a week but I hope they won't take long to reach it. I really did hope for a better result, considering that No3b is my favourite subunit out of the many. The songs are of good quality too, so I thought it was really worth the support. Let's hope they do even better the next time round!
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Not yet [Naminori Kakigoori] 1st Day Sales & Review

Not yet's sophomore single, Naminori Kakigoori, released today, three months after their debut in March. Have they outdone themselves this time, or sunk further?

Let's take a look at the Oricon charts today first:

Congratulations to Not yet once again for topping the charts!

The best-selling AKB48 subgroup continues to do us proud. Naminori Kakigoori sold 75,979 copies on the first day. For comparison, Shuumatsu Not Yet sold 50,563 copies on its first day. It is a comfortable lead for now, but will this single be able to beat their debut's first week sales of 159,678 as well? I believe it is a resounding "yes".

At least we know the general public approve of the release. What about the songs included on this single? Are they better than those on Shuumatsu Not Yet?

Naminori Kakigoori (波乗りかき氷)
The Not yet girls get solo lines for the first time. Although the girls' vocal abilities, or lack thereof, sound a bit more glaring thanks to this, but I don't mind one bit. I absolutely adore this song. It is the perfect mix of catchy, summery happy, and "pretty" with an amazing electric guitar riff at the start. By "pretty", I am talking about the wind-chime-like sparkly sounds scattered nicely throughout the song. Everything just works. In my opinion, this is the best Not yet song in their short discography so far.

PV: Fantastic beyond words. I like how the girls are all having fun in the PV. And Yuko put in effort to learn surfing, just to film those few seconds. Clumsy Rie is so adorable! The girls look really stunning. What else can I say? Go own it on DVD and loop to your heart's content!
The art direction, cinematography and filming location were crazy beautiful. They really worked the slow motion effects and depth of field. The standard of this PV is definitely much, much higher than the two versions of Shuumatsu Not Yet's PV. I suppose that their stellar debut single sales allowed for more budget allocation this time.

Vermeer no Tegami (フェルメールの手紙)
A ballad that I would say is a little too slow. However, the tune is not bad and it's relaxing. It is quite a forgettable song, but enjoyable. It does grow a little on me as I loop it more. Apparently this is the theme song for some museum exhibition about Vermeer, so it was probably specially written for it, seeing the title. The song almost qualifies as elevator music...suitable for museums, eh.

Hug Tomo (ハグ友)
The second tie-up in the single, this song is the theme song for the Japanese release of the Universal Pictures animation film Hop, which is retitled as Easter Rabbit's Candy Factory there. I personally don't see it as suitable to such a movie, but okay, whatever it does to get them publicity, right? Hug Tomo is a happy and typical idol-type song with cowboy-ish instrumentals. It also sounds way too generic.

Something that bothers me a little is the inclusion of Kojiyuu (Oshima Yuko and Kojima Haruna) dialogue. I was like, wha-? Really, I'm sure Kojiyuu fans will like it, but why the hell in a Not yet song? Harunyan has nothing to do with Not yet. I would prefer subgroups to keep some sort of distance away from main AKB, otherwise it is no different from a song on an AKB album.

I'm not fond of this song and it's also not growing on me. I don't think i'll be listening to this song anymore aside from the occasional shuffle.

Girisha no Kamotsusen (ギリシャの貨物船)
Wow, their voices start to grate in this one. This is probably a song you'd want to keep away from if the solos in Naminori Kakigoori were already grating for you. Otherwise, a pretty good ballad. I love the piano in this, and the tune is very melancholic. Nice and relaxing, in a similar way to Vermeer no Tegami, but this song works a lot better on the whole.

Bokutachi no Offshore (僕たちのオフショア)
Something slightly more upbeat! Finally! I'd liken this to Boku dake no value, both songs kind of exude the same energetic lolita idol feel, which I find weird for Not yet to do. It's not really the style they have been seemingly going for and this is more like main AKB, but alright, I like it.


Overall, most of this release are considerably slow songs. Why!? More upbeat songs would work for Not yet, slow songs only make their lack of vocal ability more obvious. Also, it gets boring! They really should do more songs like Warau ga Ii. I do like that the song titles tried to keep a kind of...."water-related" and traveling theme? Well, with the exception of Hug Tomo.

With this single, it seems Not yet is going the generic pop music path. In fact, they're definitely the most generic of all the AKB subgroups. I think it sort of works for them because the members all have mainstream appeal. If only they could cut the amount of slow songs.

Recommended song(s): Naminori Kakigoori
Single rating: 3.5 / 5
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