Ayu Marries – Happily Ever After?

3 01 2011

Congratulations to Ayumi Hamasaki who got married on January 1st in Las Vegas to an Austrian actor named Manuel Schwarz. Now whilst I congratulate her, I’m actually questioning the wisdom behind this marriage as they barely know each other and haven’t really properly dated. Ayu met Manuel in August 2010 when he played her husband in the PV for Virgin Road. They began ‘dating’ and kept in touch by emailing and phone calls. 4 months later they decide to marry – if she’s not pregnant, why rush into things? The funny thing about this marriage is they won’t even live with each other – both will be on opposite sides of the world. Ayu has stated she’s going to be travelling a lot between Japan and the US to see her husband. I’d like Ayu to be happy but I’m giving this marriage 12 months at best before they’ll be an announcement that a divorce is on the cards. A long distance marriage won’t work.





What Was The Best J-Pop Album Of 2009?

3 01 2010

It’s time to look back at what was the best J-pop album released in 2009. For me, these are the pick of the bunch:

SWEET BLACK feat Maki Goto. It was a fantastic return for Gocchin and this album really rocks.

Stereopony – A Hydrangea Blooms. Debutants Stereopony burst onto the J-pop scene with a couple of great singles and the album delivered too.

Nana Mizuki – Ultimate Diamond

Miliyah Kato – Ring

Ayumi Hamasaki – Next Level. Ayu’s new album continued her fine tradition of producing¬† a solid album full of top tunes.

Koda Kumi – Trick. Kumi came out with a brilliant new album. Actually this nearly came to be the best album of the year but as you’ll see somebody else pipped her to the title.

Aira Mitsuki – Plastic

Ayaka Ikio – Gossip. I was browsing through HMV in Center Gai, Shibuya during my holiday there in the Summer when I discovered this young woman.

Scandal – Best Scandal. Scandal just keeps getting better in my opinion. 2009 saw them releasing some great songs.

Hitomi – Love Life 2

Michi – Up To You. British born Michi debuted in 2008 with Promise and in 2009 came out with the superb Change The World single. Her 2nd album came out in September which contained the singles Kiss Kiss xxx and You.

Namie Amuro – Past < Future. As 2009 came to an end, Namie came out with her new album mid December which had some excellent tracks on it such as her single Wild.

So if none of them came out on top, which album was my favorite of the year?

Perfume – Triangle. The 3rd and much anticipated album from Perfume has to be the best one for me as it contains my favorite song Dream Fighter plus Love The World, Edge and One Room Disco.

This is a live version of the song Night Flight which is also on the Triangle album.





This Week’s Selection Of J-Pop PV’s – 3/6/09

3 06 2009

It’s been quiet over the past week with idol news so here’s a couple of PV’s to keep this site ticking over:

1. Ayumi Hamasaki – Fairyland

2. Rurutia – Lost Butterfly

3. Buck Tick – My Eyes & Your Eyes (LIVE Version)

4. Namie Amuro – Baby Don’t Cry

and since it’s nearly Summer

5. NewS – Summer Time





Notable 2009 1st Quarter Single/Album Releases

20 02 2009

In this post I’ll give you the release dates of notable singles/albums of artists that you might be interested in purchasing/downloading right up to the middle of April:

25th February:
Ayumi Hamasaki’s double A-side single Rule/Sparkle comes out next week which is sure to be a big seller and go straight to No.1. On the same day the excellent Ami Suzuki releases her new single Reincarnation, Ai Otsuka with Bye Bye and misono who’s inconsistent at best with her songs releases her latest one Kyuukon. On the album side Tomoke Kawase releases 2 best of CD’s for her alter egos Tommy February6 and Tommy Heavenly6 named Strawberry Cream Soda Pop “Daydream” and Gothic Melting Ice Cream’s Darkness “Nightmare”. Quite a mouthful aren’t they!!

4th March:
The underrated Chinese female soloist alan finally releases her debut album called Voice of EARTH. I’m really looking forward to this one. I’ve no idea why she’s overlooked by Japanese music fans. Also coming out will be the first collaboration between siblings Koda Kumi and misono with their song It’s All Love plus AKB48 release 10 Nen Sakura. Hope that does as well as their last song Oogoe Diamond.

9th March:
AKB48 sub-unit No Sleeves release their 2nd single Tane.

14th March:
Hikaru Utada’s 2nd English album called This Is The One comes out. It’ll be interesting to see how this one fares in the US as Exodus bombed big style over there. I like her song Come Back To Me. I’m expecting good things from this album just as long as she doesn’t abandon the style that made Heart Station such a success.

18th March:
Plenty of good music coming out on this date including BoA’s Best&USA album plus another album simply called BoA. I think this is released on the 17th. An artist that I’ve started to get into lately Saori@destiny brings out her mini-album WOW WAR TECHNO. Morning Musume’s album Platinum 9 Disc also comes out. On the single side of things the highly anticipated new single by Namie Amuro called Wild/Dr will be released. I really like Namie so I can’t wait for this single from her.

25th March:
The big release for me this week is Perfume’s 14th single One Room Disco. I’m waiting in anticipation for the preview and PV to this song. Gackt’s latest song which is also the OP for tokusatsu TV show Kamen Rider Decade called Journey Through The Decade also comes out plus Ayumi Hamasaki’s 12th album NEXT LEVEL. That should be great. One of my favorites from old skool Morning Musume – Mari Yaguchi releases her single which I mentioned sometime ago called Seishun Boku. In addition to the above, Koda Kumi gives us a double whammy with 2 CD’s – one’s a remix album called Koda Kumi’s Driving Hits and the other is a compilation called Out Work & Collaborations Best. My wallet is going to be hit hard on this date!!!

April 8th:
alan comes out with yet another new single Kuon na Kawa

April 15th
The brilliant Girl Next Door after a busy end to 2008 with 4 singles and an album release their newest single Seeds of Dream. I really enjoyed their debut album.