Okay so the results of the top ten poll are out. Your favourite H!P single of 2013 is…
Wagamama Ki no Mama Ai no Joke – Morning Musume 24% (24 votes)
Help Me!! – Morning Musume 13% (13 votes)
Crazy Kanzen na Otona – C-ute 10% (10 votes)
Brainstorming – Morning Musume 9% (9 votes)
Ai no Gundan – Morning Musume 6% (6 votes)
Adam to Eve no Dilemma – C-ute 5% (5 votes)
Yattaruchan – S/mileage 5% (5 votes)
Watashi ga Iu Mae ni Dakishimenakya ne – Juice=Juice 3% (3 votes)
Romance no Tochuu – Juice=Juice 3% (3 votes)
Ijiwaru Shinaide Dakishimete yo – Juice=Juice 3% (3 votes)
Kaigan Seisou Danshi – HI-FIN 3% (3 votes)
Motto Zutto Issho ni Itakatta – Berryz Kobo 2% (2 votes)
Ai tte Motto Zanshin – Cute 2% (2 votes)
“Ii Yatsu” – S/mileage 2% (2 votes)
Kimi Sae Ireba Nani mo Iranai – Morning Musume 1% (1 votes)
ROCK Erotic – Berryz Kobo 1% (1 votes)
Kono Machi – C-ute 1% (1 votes)
Kanashiki Amefuri – C-ute 1% (1 votes)
Tokai no Hitorigurashi – C-ute 1% (1 votes)
Ee ka!? – S/mileage 1% (1 votes)
Samidare Bijo ga Samidareru – Juice=Juice 1% (1 votes)
Hajimete wo Keikenchuu – Juice=Juice 1% (1 votes)
Lady Mermaid – Dia Lady 1% (1 votes)
Eiya-sa! Brother – Mellowquad 1% (1 votes)
Other songs – No votes
But as is traditional at this time of year I think you are all wrong. Wrong I Say. So here is my own personal top ten. In reverse order net ta…I mean at ten…
10. Ten Made Nobore! – Hello! Pro Kenshuusei (featuring Juice=Juice)
A lot of Hello! Project’s recent output could belong to any group. I mean C-ute and Momusu have both had great years with great singles but the songs are interchangeable. You could swap them round quite easily and the sales of Momusu and C-ute would stay the same and a Momusu song would still be as good as a Momusu song usually is and the same goes for C-ute. This is another song that could easily be performed by any of the groups but in this instance the youthfullness and sheer numbers of idols involved does make it stand out. The trainees have some very promising members. Tanabe Nanami is my own personal favourite but also worth watching out for is the adorable looking Hamaura Ayano. The trainees as a whole give this something the other groups can’t which is youthful energy. That sounds strange considering they aren’t much younger than most of Momusu. However in terms of style of singing and style of music it seems that the trainees are being given some more poppy and youthful stuff to perform. Their as yet unreleased next single is even better than this and even more genki. They are closer to non-H!P group Sakura Gakuin than any of the H!P groups. I mean look at Juice=Juice. They are the same age but are being given much more mature sounding songs to sing. Not that I’m complainig as I really like them but some variety and some happy, catchy pop would be welcome from time to time from someone in H!P ( S/mileage don’t count as they are shit these days). I hope the trainees get some bigger releases. There’s no reason why they can’t. Let’s look to their future now. It’s only just begun (thanks Noddy).
9. Dia Lady – Lady Mermaid
I am not entirely sure what “one for the one” actually means but this song is a great summer’s ending song. A great summer’s ending song from about 1958 by the sounds of it but that doesn’t matter. It’s a slice of mock-50’s heaven. PV-wise doesn’t Airi look great? Hey get that jukebox on daddio and let’s get down.
8. Hajimete wo Keikenchuu – Juice=Juice
Juice=Juice are a promising young group. This song sounds very much like one of S/mileage’s indies singles (and that single is Asu wa Date na no ni, Ima Sugu Koe ga Kikitai). The pv has a similar look too. However if you are going to sound like another group then early S/mileage is a good choice. Let’s just hope J=J don’t bugger things up by graduating their best member and replacing them with dross. Back to the song though and how can you not be won over by it? Hello ladies. What’s that you say? You want my wallet, my worldy possessions and my future years? Certainly. Here, take them.
7. Kono Machi – C-ute
This song was sort of overlooked a bit by fans despite selling well. I think that’s because it’s a ballad and most fans see ballads the way other people see clowns in nightmares. But you can’t have every song be the same and the odd ballad is a good tempo changer. Plus this is a really beautiful song. It’s the kind of song you could sing along to without needing oxygen. It’s the kind of song you can feel in your heart. Frankly it’s rather splendid!
6. Kanashiki Amefuri – C-ute
It was a great year for C-ute. Their sales were better than ever. They also produced a lot of really good singles although it could be argued they almost all are of a very similar style. Even so C-ute were group of the year for me. Their Budokan concerts were a lovely reward for them. Meanwhile their fantastic Paris concert was a lovely reward for me. ^^ This single is another one of those singles that are interchangeable between C-ute and Momusu. At the same time though it’s also bloody good so maybe it doesn’t really matter? And the thing is, since it’s C-ute, since it’s those five tightly-knitted performers it is lifted anyway. The song is better because they perform it. C-ute are a fantastic unit. There is no
Masaki waste whatsoever. Just sheer class!
5. Help Me!! – Morning Musume
Ah Morning Musume or Morning Musume (add year here) as they will shortly and pointlessly become. They continue to deliver the goods. Happily sales continue to improve too. It was great to see them return to number one this year. Something they deserve. Anyway despite only putting two of their singles in the top ten I do lke all their singles this year. In terms of listens though there are only two that have really forced their way into my brain. This is the first entry and wow it has Reina in it. Didn’t she graduate about three years ago? Well that’s what it feels like. The song itself is much like their other singles but just that little bit more catchy than, say, Brainstorming. That little bit makes a lot of difference to me. This song relentlessly pounds at the door of your brain until you say “oh okay then. Come in if you must”.
4. Tokai no Hitorigurashi – C-ute
If I did a best pv of the year post this would win it. Inventive and striking (albeit with awful outfits). The song though is almost as good. And why not? If you took away the mock saxophone sounds that seem to be everywhere with H!P these days you’d probably have a lot of silence and I do wish they’d maybe find another sound for their groups. It all sounds quite funk-lite or something. But that doesn’t stop the song being good. It’s just I get the urge to wear a big cardigan like Starsky (or was it Hutch. The dark-haired one. Him) when I hear this type of music. That’s meant most of H!P’s output has made me think it’s 1978 minus the punk this year. But griping aside I’ve still enjoyed what I’ve heard. I’d just prefer real instruments at least or maybe some different types of mock-intruments on the 80’s Yamaha keyboard it sounds like H!P use. Hmm…I’ve got to number three and started bitching. Odd. But all that having been said when I turn the volume up and listen to this song and the others in this chart I love them. I feel they could be better but I also feel H!P is still better than any other jpop company. Although Sakura Gakuin and it’s sub-units are pushing them closely. Very closely! So to be positive, this song is great. It’s performed by quite the best damn group of idols there is. It’s a song I’ve listened to a lot. It’s good. Really it is. Has anyone seen Huggy Bear though? I need some info…
3. Ai no Gundan – Morning Musume
Fake saxophones! Yay! >.> Well at least with this they keep them just for the the musical chorus. There doesn’t seem to be a lyrical chorus (which is itself quite an interesting thing to do). And like with C-ute’s Tokai no Hitorigurashi you can’t complain at the tune. It’s another song that batters it’s way into your brain like a bailiff battering their way into a poor persons house to reclaim the Brighthouse shite they mistakenly thought they could afford. It’s a stonker of a tune (did I just make the word “stonker” up?) Well it’s damn good either way. And it’s great to see Momusu firing on all cylinders. I’m hoping they can continue to increase their sales next year. Sayu’s loli army are a force to be reckoned with. They have gven so many people so much entertainment over the years and gundamit may they continue to do so for many more years to come! Ahem.
2. Crazy Kanzen na Otona – C-ute
Hit me! Hit me! Hit me with those laser beams! Fantastic pv isn’t it? Only let down by Chissa’s awful dyed hair. But anyway the song beat off all other C-ute songs released this year for me even if they all did sound the same really except for one ballad. Well it’s a winning formula and this was the mixture that gelled the best. Or something. Err…I like the weee-wooo sounds in the background you know. And the pounding drum sound. And the sounds of their voices singing the Crazy bit. Err…I’m not really a music reviewer you know. Anyway I liked this song a little bit more than the others I have previously mentioned. But not as much as…
1. Kaigan Seisou Danshi – HI-FIN
My number one single of the year is surprisingly perhaps this track from The Beach Girls (ahahaha. >.>) Get the surfboard out, open a few tinnies, err…get the barbie on and then grab Nacky a bikini and go clean the beach. When these frankly quite spoiled little Princesses ask you to do such a thing it actually sounds like fun. Especially when accompanied by a surftastic 60’s tune. Well it’s better than mock-saxophone’s accompanying a 70’s light funk. The bailiffs of my mind just called round. They want to take Nacky away. I thought I could afford her but it turns out the little minx is quite high maintenance. Damn. Still it was fun while it lasted. I wonder if I can keep the bikini…