JPOP, JPOP, and JPOP: The Discussion Thread

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Wemibelle

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Got a few more songs, as usual. A bit late due to the hype for the new Final Fantasy XIV expansion, but here they are!

Spooky Glitch Night - YUC’e (2021)

YUC’e is a very talented music producer and vocalist with a focus on electronic pop songs, such as Spooky Glitch Night. There are a few fantastic production breakdowns throughout the song and her vocals are delightfully playful as well.

Outsider - Tokyo Gegegay (2021)

You don’t ever really know what you’re gonna get with a new Tokyo Gegegay release, which I love. Outsider is a track with a very catchy synth beat that wouldn’t sound out of place in a Japanese rhythm game song, and the vocals are tight and fun.

Moshimo inochi ga kaketara - Yoasobi (2021)

Yep, another Yoasobi track. But I can’t help sharing so many of them when they’re all so good! Moshimo inochi ga kaketara (roughly translated as “if I can draw life”) is a bit slower paced but has a superb flow that I find incredibly soothing.

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A very quick post this week. Still busy pushing through the newest Final Fantasy XIV expansion and working on Top 10s for the end of the year. Look forward to them!

illumina - DEATHNYANN (2021)

A fascinatingly creative song that switches it up constantly, never letting you know where it’s going next. Worth checking out.

Lush Life - clammbon (2018)

This is a song I recently rediscovered and remember how fantastic it is–the tight beat and upbeat vocals work super well together and make it a song I have to bounce along to.

Virtual Freedom - CAPSULE (2021)

Another new Capsule release. I dig this one a bit more than the other, but it still doesn’t quite hit me in the same way as my favorites.

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Forgot to post about it last week, but I'm taking a break for a few weeks to a month because of the new year. In case you missed it, you can find my Top 10 list for 2021 HERE. Have a great start to your year, everyone!

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Sorry for the extra long delay between posts. Between getting together and posting my Top 10 list for 2021 and lots of life stuff getting in the way, I decided to take a little hiatus and let some songs build up before returning. But I’m back and ready to share a bunch of new songs with everyone!

F Wonderful World - ano (2021)

Gonna start with a 2021 release that I missed and just recently found. F Wonderful World is strange and bouncy and adorable, and I think it’s a great deal of fun. It’s definitely chaotic and probably a bit too much for some people, but I love its crazy energy and eclectic sound.

In This World feat. Ryuichi Sakamoto - Mondo Grosso (2022)

Another release from Mondo Grosso, one of my absolute favorite producers out there now, In This World features guest pianist Ryuichi Sakamoto and vocalist Hikari Mitsushima. Everything about this track is absolutely gorgeous and stunning from the brilliant, ethereal vocal work from Hikari to the gorgeous shot and lit music video. Also, I LOVE Hikari’s outfit so much!

I’m Here to Stay - hiro (2022)

I’m Here to Stay from hiro is a track that feels very retro to me, reminiscent of that older JPOP style that melds the sound of pop and R&B to create something I absolutely associate with Japanese music of a certain era. It’s such a smooth track from top to bottom, both vocally and production-wise, that I can’t help but admire its sound.

Shinjuku no Nekomae - Rakura (2022)

Shinjuku no Nekomae is my first exposure to Rakura as an artist, but I was immediately struck by her vocal style. It just works so well with the sound of this track, which sounds like a speedier, more upbeat form of city pop. Her vocals punch with the beat so nicely that I find myself nodding along with each verse automatically.

Choudai - miyuna (2022)

Miyuna’s Choudai is a song that requires you to like autotune because it is used HEAVILY. Personally, I enjoy the echoey, otherworldly sound it can give a song sometimes, so I find this track pretty fun actually. It works nicely with the punchy production, especially during the chorus which is my favorite part of the song.

BONUS: Thunderstruck - Man with a Mission (2022)

Since this is a weird cover, I figured I’d throw this in as a bonus–Man with a Mission covering AC/DC’s Thunderstruck. This is definitely not a straight cover, but a cover done in the style of Man with a Mission. While it is noticeable in some of the additions to the production, like record scratches and a slightly peppier beat, the most noticeable change is to the vocals, which aren’t trying to be faithful at all. It’s…weird but I kinda like it?

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#355  Edited By Wemibelle

Back with some new songs from 2022!

Affordance - Daoko + GuruConnect (2022)

A new track from Daoko, Affordance features production from GuruConnect alongside Daoko’s vocals. GuruConnect’s minimalist yet creative production complete with fun little sound effects and a slightly menacing sound pairs together extremely well with Daoko’s brand of subtle but fluid and powerful vocal delivery to make something I definitely vibe with.

Outta the Clouds - FEMM (2022)

FEMM is back with a new album and it’s…okay? I already knew FEMM had shifted away from the style they debuted with, the style I loved them for, and I wasn’t expecting much from Outta the Clouds. But it’s definitely my favorite out of the new tracks, a mellow yet decently punchy song with solid production and nicely flowing vocals.

Smile Again - Nagie Lane (2022)

Japanese acapella group Nagie Lane has returned with Smile Again, a song that never fails to make me smile again when I hear it. It’s just such a pleasant, relaxing track that I find myself immersed in every time I play it. I really enjoy the sparse English vocals, as they have a nice punch to them when they pop up.

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Time for another three songs!

If I Become An Angel - Momoka Kinoshita (2022)

Momoka Kinoshita was a founding member of NMB48, a sister group to AKB48 (a hugely popular supergroup of 48 regularly revolving members), but has moved to solo work after graduating from the group in 2017. If I Become An Angel is her most recent video release and I really enjoy its retro production style and its very deliberately paced vocals. It’s a bizarre song, with a kinda all-over-the-place music video, but I find it fascinating and compelling nonetheless.

Mister - Yoasobi (2022)

This isn’t the first Yoasobi track I’ve featured here, but it’s certainly the latest! Mister doesn’t have a full video (at least yet), but I think it’s yet another fantastic track from the talented duo. At this point, if you’ve heard any of Yoasobi’s work, you know what to expect here: powerful vocals, bouncy beats, and just a pleasant overall feel. Mister is no exception to this, and it’s definitely worth checking out.

Edison - Suiyoubi no Campanella (2022)

Edison is the first Suiyoubi song I’ve actually really liked since the switch from old vocalist KOM_I to their new member, Utaha. None of her tracks have been bad, per se, but they just didn’t quite have the same feel as the group’s older tracks, not how I wanted. Edison finally hit for me in a way I realized I’ve been craving since KOM_I’s departure. Maybe it’s the style of the song or maybe it’s the particular production, but something just vibes with me so well here and I really love it.

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#357  Edited By piousmartyr

@wemibelle:

I was just about to post Edison. I have the same feeling as you, I really love it. Utaha is incredibly fun & charming, it really nails the quirky style a lot of Wednesday Campanella's songs have. I have a hard time putting exactly what it is about their music I love so much.

I also really like the other single on their EP: Wednesday Campanella -- Maneki Neko (2022)

Kyary Pamyu Pamyu - Maybe Baby (2022)

Kyary's songs are always so fun and energetic. I love the artstyle of the video too. It's like early 90s anime meets city pop.

0.8Syooogeki - Beatnik Killers (2010)

An older song, and not exactly pop. Wikipedia says their genres are 'New wave, post-punk, folk' which seems like a good fit. I absolutely love this song. Both vocalists are great, I like the dynamic between her low-key singing and his screaming in this song.

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Gonna go with a bit of a quicker post this week since it’s my birthday! Enjoy the new songs, everyone!

Pogo! - Cluppo (2022)

I’m really happy to see Band-Maid Miku’s side project, Cluppo, continuing instead of being a one-and-done kind of thing that most side projects end up being. Pogo! is reminiscent of Peace & Love’s style but only slightly, focusing more on sharply delivered vocals and a poppier/more electronic sound overall. It’s really interesting and I like it more and more over time.

Green Light - Furui Riho (2022)

Green Light is the title track from Furui Riho’s first full album, and I found it striking immediately. Her vocals are smooth and punchy, and there is some creative use of effects to distort them in cool ways. The production is also fantastic, with some killer deep bass lines and an overly playful tone that makes this song work so well for me.

Century - Komono Lake (2022)

I had never heard Komono Lake before I heard Century, but I was immediately wanting to hear more. The vocalist’s voice is remarkably pure and clean, and I really like the overall sound of the song, mellow yet upbeat and hopeful sounding. There’s some good rising and falling over the course of the song, with the quiet parts being some of my favorites in the song.

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For this week, I’ve got a pair of new releases from artists I’ve featured here many times over and a track from an artist I didn’t even remember having heard tracks from before! Hope you enjoy!

Rubbish:) - No Buses (2022)

No Buses is back with another solid track, Rubbish:). The last few releases have been a bit out there and different in an interesting, yet less appealing for me personally, way. This track, however, gets back to the tight punk instrumentation and awkward but oddly compelling English vocals that I really enjoy from the group. It’s not quite as tight or catchy as my favorites, but it’s still a great track.

Hide and Seek - Polkadot Stingray (2022)

Hide and Seek differs from a typical Polkadot Stingray song in a couple ways. First is the use of some English vocals during the verses of the song, delivered in an alluringly deep vocal tone that is not very typical for the vocalist. The other is the very strange, weirdly experimental instrument breakdown about halfway through the song that sounds so out of place but is actually kinda awesome? I also dig how parts of the song, especially the bridges, have a light Persona vibe.

Rest - I Luv Me (2022)

Rest is not the first I Luv Me track I’ve heard (to my surprise!), but it’s the first to make a real impact on me. This is a fantastically pleasant track to listen to thanks to its mellow production, catchy beat, and soft yet memorable vocals. The chorus is just so…relaxing and calming for me and makes me smile again and again. It’s a song that feels as soothing as its title.

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It’s been a long time with no post, sadly. I’ve been super busy with personal things--between switching jobs and moving into a new place with my partner, I’ve just not had the time to string together some words and songs. Even now, I don’t have energy to do much else than post a few songs this week, but at least I’m able to do that!

Marry Me - Paris Death Hilton (2022)

Marry Me is an incredibly strange, experimental track that is hard to describe, but boy, is it striking! It has a very unique sound that I enjoy quite a bit and makes me eager to check out more from the group.

Air - fhána (2022)

I’ve enjoyed some fhána tracks here and there, but Air sticks out a bit more to me due to its high energy, catchy beat, and straightforward vocals.

Shadows - Periwinkles (2022)

Shadows is a really dark, subdued alt-rock song that has a fantastic sound in my opinion. It’s surprisingly catchy despite its sluggish pace and I love how sinister it sounds.

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Back with some new songs again!

Habit - Sekai no Owari (2022)

Habit has a lot of the traditional style of Sekai no Owari, but I really like the vocaloid “layer” that feels slapped over the the top–the bassier production, the auto-tuned-esque vocals, etc. It’s a catchy song and immediately memorable.

Anima (Naked Style) - ReoNa (2022)

This is a reimagined version of ReoNa’s track, Anima, from 2020. All the new instrumentation is a lot of fun and adds to the track and ReoNa’s vocals bring something a little extra this time around too.

Jack Da Funk - Hideki Naganuma (2022)

Hideki Naganuma, a talented Sega composer most well-known for his work on the Jet Set Radio games, is adding his talents to a new game called Bomb Rush Cyberfunk. Jack Da Funk is just one track from that game, and it’s just what you’d expect from Naganuma–a funky, bassy track filled with stylish vocals and sound effects

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Time for another bunch of Japanese songs!

Rumor - Nanaruna (2021)

I’m a huge fan of songs that pair two or more voices together in a compelling way, and Rumor is definitely one of those songs. Not only do the verses have a fun, catchy back-and-forth as the duo echo each other with each line, but their voices meld together strongly for the choruses. It’s a song that seemed very whatever to me at first but quickly grew on me due to the strength of its vocals.

Ultraman - Noilion (2022)

I’m usually pretty cold on anime themes, as many of them sound very similar and/or very bland, but this song for the new season of Ultraman (also called Ultraman) is not too bad. It’s got this very epic, powerful feel to it, and I kinda love the all-English, nonsensical lyrics that make up the song. It’s really silly but undoubtedly a bit catchy too!

The Greatest - BoA (2022)

BoA is an absolute titan in the Korean pop world, with a very successful career spanning over 20 years, but she’s also had lots of success in Japan. The Greatest is actually the title track off her 20th anniversary album in the Japanese market. Everything is on-point here from the energetic, bassy production to the smooth, catchy vocals, and it’s just a lot of fun.

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Got a quick batch of songs for this week, focused on (mostly) English songs from Japanese groups.

Oh Hey - Hitsujibungaku (2022)

Oh Hey is a really cute, soft pop-rock track with a catchy beat and memorable vocals, particularly that adorable “Oh hey” again and again.

One Vision - Beverly (2022)

One Vision is a charmingly upbeat and hopeful track that shines brightly thanks to the beautiful, powerful vocals from Beverly.

Before I Go - Coldrain (2022)

The newest track from Coldrain, Before I Go is predictable in its sound but still demonstrates the tight instrumentation and mastery of their style from the group.

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#364  Edited By Wemibelle

My music listening habits have dipped down a bit in the last few months due to a bunch of life stuff, so these posts might get a little less regular. I’ll still share songs when I can, but it might just be one or two here and there whenever I hear something cool.

Anyways, hope you enjoy these!

Call In Sick feat. Chelmico - Xavier (2021)

Here’s a song from last year I missed. The production on this track is fantastic, with a tight beat and sick guitar riffs. Vocals are done by hip-hop duo Chelmico, and they suit the song’s style perfectly.

Save Yourself - One Ok Rock (2022)

I’ve heard a fair number of One Ok Rock’s tracks, but boy, do I really like Save Yourself. I love the way all the instruments sound, and the vocals are super on-point and catchy. It’s just a damn fine rock track and worth a listen.

Mystery Train feat. Wez Atlas - Helsinki Lambda Club (2022)

This song has a really interesting sound that melds a more upbeat pop style with spurts of typical rock–not too surprising from an alt band like Helsinki Lambda Club. My favorite part though is guest Wez Atlas’s tight verses that flow so damn well with the beat.