I figured, after doing a ton of EBiDAN spazzing on twitter the past 72 hours or so, I'm due for a post, so I'm posting...doing this amidst Da-iCE music playing on my headphones (my headphones saved my life, indeed) and a highly distracted mind and a pair of eyes that are just about ready to...close and send myself to deep-ish slumber...
If you recall back to my first EBiDAN post, I was impartial or I never really gave Choutokkyuu a listen or any sort of attention... Well, hi, because I've had a change of heart after seeing a few things from them. And yes, this is likely to be a Choutokkyuu sort-of-pimp-post...or something like it. I'll try to keep things short, sweet, brief and non-boring.
（photo source: tumblr）CHOUTOKKYUU (超特急)
I hadn't become a fan of theirs on the first EBiDAN post because I had issues with them being too idol-y in terms of costumes, maybe some stage theatrics - they do seem to come off idol-y on stage and on their ChouxD, ChouxD + Z tv series at times - among others. These are some of the things that put me off of a lot of Jpop acts indefinitely. I mean, all I actually want is normality in a group of boys I stan - the regular boyband format, see: Da-iCE, Vimclip, PrizmaX, etc. or the regular artist format as in the case of White Jam. A second look at Choutokkyuu however, especially their humble beginnings - when then they were a little bit like children yet and performing for a small crowd at a market here: 120331 超特急 「 トレイン 」 BULLET TRAIN
has perpetually changed my opinion on them. So yep, change of heart. Note that I'm still not too keen on their super sentai-ish colors and their wardrobe per MV most of the time as in the case of Believe x Believe and Ikki. By a long mile, I can also add in their wardrobe for Starlight and maybe even Star Gear and Bloody Night as these also unsettle me sometimes. But I'm getting used to their concept somehow. They were patterned after Momoiro Clover hence the color assignment among others. They're just...uhmn...cooler than MomoClo. I don't wander JIdol territory, tbqh, because Japanese Idolandia is something I can't put my head beyond in...
One thing I like about Choutokkyuu is, their main dancers CAN actually DANCE. They have a weird format, so bear with me here. The first in Japan and probably East Asia, I suppose. Their back vocals are pretty decent, I have a bias on Takashi. Koichi...he was a little off on their EBiDAN the Live concert/show at one point, with his PleasemaX group that Ryoga actually outshined him when they performed PrizmaX's Mysterious eyes. But Koichi harmonises with Takashi pretty well most of the time so I don't have a lot of issues on their back vocals.
Oshimen, ichiban...I don't really use those terms when I pertain to a favorite in a group. I prefer 'bias'. My current Choutokkyuu bias is Murata Yuki (red). His dancing is superb, his dancing form is always on point, the guy has grace and...well...what else? He can backflip. I'm pretty sure he can break dance if he wandered around that part of dance. As for the other 4 main dancers...Takuya's (green) pretty cute, Yusuke (yellow) is an ikemen, Kai (blue) is cool-looking and Ryoga (purple/violet) is...Ryoga.
Music-wise, there's not much I can say, to be honest. There are only a few that I'd put in my playlist with most of the tracks from Vimclip, Da-iCE, White Jam and PrizmaX. I actually am having issues with their gritty, edgy sound but it fits Choutokyuu quite well so I don't really mind majority of it. So far, my favorites are: Hashire!!!! Choutokkyuu, Secret Express, Train and Kura Kura. I have yet to listen to the whole of their first album, Ring, so we'll see what else I can add to the list.
Choutokkyuu, in a nutshell, is a group that I somehow can't stand just listening to their music to. It's a must for me to see their performance videos, their dance shots and their music videos. I suppose this is the purpose of them being a main dancer-back vocal group. You'd actually need to spend bucks to see them live or something. There's really no other way to go around it anyway.
I've met a few fans on twitter that say they aren't really idols though they may seem like it. They do not join idol fests despite their ridiculous costumes, they're also mostly actors and models and not...idols. So yep, check and check on Choutokkyuu not being an idol group despite their color assignments and costume or theme gimmicks. Uhmn...I think I can get in on this one so yes! Go Choutokkyuu stanning. It starts here and now. LOL.
(photo source: tumblr; in the photo [from L-R]: Masaki, Takumi, Ryuji, To-I)DISH//
Compared to Choutokkyuu, DISH// music is something I find much more difficult to get into. Their style or orientation as a Jboyband is also quite different. For one, they're more pop-punk rock than they are the usual pop I enjoy from my favorite Japanese male groups. Or at least that's the kind of music they release anyway.
The most popular member from this group is probably Takumi as he has been everywhere since being signed onto Stardust. I've seen him in a Radwimps MV and he was also in Fallen Angel with Amuse's Uehara Takuya which I have been meaning to watch from so long ago. The episodes are still likely parking somewhere in my external storage drive...somewhere. I'll get to it probably when I finish grad school, finally. I'm just trying to get this post out of my head for today because I'm bound to be working on everything thesis tonight from data gathering results inputting to actually finally rounding up the whole thing... Yep, busy weekend for me.
Style-wise, while Choutokkyuu is the main dancers-back vocals type, DISH// is the guitar toting dancing pop-punk rock singing and rapping group. As it has been awhile since I've dabbled in such a genre - I've done nothing lately but stan and listen to mostly easy listening jpop in the line of R&B and even Urban and some tolerable hiphop - all I can say is...they're a bit on and off for me musically. There are times when I love them, there are times when I am indifferent to them and there are times when I'm limboing between loving and hating them. One thing though that I really like about DISH// is that they never fail to make people laugh or giggle a little with the MV concepts come up with and release.
For my DISH// MV and music reccs, my favorite seems to be this one: I Can Hear
. For one, it's catchy and I like the chorus...a lot. Choruses are always the deal breakers for me when it comes to judging whether songs are radio friendly or not. Second and last, I just love how random the MV is...I mean who the heck comes up with holding a raddish or a big fish while well, you know, singing and dancing or something?! They even went to the point of cleaning the table and stage...uhm...ok. And Give Me Chocolate
is my first song I've ever tried from them that now, I actually have a love-hate relationship with that I've also even established it now as 2015's Japanese/Jpop/Jrock Valentines' Day song. Umn...yes. It's that annoying I just really had to. The MV for it is just as hilarious and random as I Can Hear's however. So it's a win-win thing as well.
For the record, I actually like Takumi's raw vocals. It pretty much fits the music style DISH// has. Basically, DISH// has Masaki and Takumi as vocals and guitars then To-I and Ryuji for rapping. Ryuji also does the guitars and To-I DJs for them.
Age-wise, Choutokkyuu and DISH// are comprised of young people. Back in 2012, when Choutokkyuu first debuted (Train era?), their ages were around 16-18 or 19. At least, at this time, Ryoga and Yuki are already legal. Both are already 20...or is Ryoga 21 already? I'm not sure. LOL. Yusuke is also turning 20 this year, as I'd been told. DISH// are basically babies...to me. Masaki is only 17, Takumi is 17 turning 18 this year. Masaki and Ryuji are around 19-20, if I recall correctly.Customiz, PrizmaX
I'm leaving this portion blank because I suppose I'd rather just write a separate pimp post for PrizmaX later because (1), they're similar to Choutokkyuu musically although prone more to release easy listening pop tracks similar to One Direction's signature music style...and at the same time, not really because Choutokkyuu's music is grittier and edgier than PrizmaX's; and (2) being closer musically to Choutokkyuu, they're very different from DISH//. PrizmaX is...well, it's the first jboyband from EBiDAN I have come to know because they had been at times part of the SWISH music/concert events' lineup that White Jam, Da-iCE and Vimclip normally participate in. They currently have one such event they are holding on the 30th of March this year. Vimclip isn't with them then but I'm pretty sure SWISH on March 30 will still be pretty interesting.
Customiz is...there's not a lot I know about them at this point except that they have Kurihara Goro and that they've lost one member, Matsui Kenta only to be replaced by Hama who's also the tallest among them. LOL. Kurihara Goro is known for his many prolific roles in dramas like Kingyo Club among others. He was also in the second HanaKimi series. Two times did he couple up with actress Shida Mirai as well. Music-wise, though I have yet to hear of their music in full, Customiz is pretty much Jrock. Considering I've already wandered away from Jrock, I'm not sure yet when I'll be able to finally stan Customiz. Probably...never. I still have my hands full with Da-iCE at the moment.
Of the two, I'm more of a PrizmaX fan. Of the four groups...I'm also more of a PrizmaX fan, music-wise. Choutokkyuu, although I do love them...and I love them a lot, musically...a lot of theirs just do not appeal to me yet. Choutokkyuu is the type whose music has yet to grow on highly critical pop music listeners (like me). I don't really consider their music style kpop-esque because I don't get the comparison. I also only listen to very little, highly isolated kpop. All I can say is that both PrizmaX and Choutokkyuu's music style combined is pretty much influenced by Western pop music. I wouldn't also say it's EDM because it's way softer than regular EDM - more in the case of PrizmaX than Choutokkyuu's.
So what else do I need to lay on the table so you guys can begin stanning these groups as well? Ah, EBiDAN the Live, a summer concert/event from last year, is actually pretty interesting...and...utter riotous hilarity. I've seen DASH@@ (a parody of DISH// which consists of Daichi and Goro from Customiz, Yusuke from Choutokkyuu and PrizmaX's Daiki)'s version of Peter Pan Syndrome; Shindaitokkyuu (a parody of Choutokkyuu consisting of Hama and Hiroki from Customiz, Yuuki, Tsubasa and Win from PrizmaX and Masaki and Takumi from DISH//)'s version of Shake Body and finally, PleasemaX (a parody of PrizmaX with Koichi, Ryoga and Takuya from Choutokyuu; and Ryuji and To-I from DISH//)'s version of Mysterious Eyes. There was also Customiz that was to CustomiV that had Choutokkyuu's Yuki, Kai and Takashi then PrizmaX's Tim but I'm not at all sure what it was they sung because I haven't seen a glimpse of their performance. Sad because Yuki was there and I wanted to see it badly, damnit. It's like, the roundabout way for me to learn about Customiz since I'm too lazy to look them up at this time. Yuki and Hiroki also totally exchanged places at this point because Yuki filled Hiroki's space in what was now CustomiV while Hiroki was featured center for Shake Body many times...which was...well...hilarious. I still love Hiroki for trying so hard to dance like Yuki. In the end, I ended up laughing over Takumi trying to be Takuya everytime 'beauty' came into the refrain/chorus part of Shake Body. At one time, he even went on imitating a bunny. It's probably something Takuya wouldn't do. LOL.
Obligatory 50 Shades of Grey Commentary: BecauseThis Is Highly Needed Here, I think?
I'm well beyond caring for this shit fest at this moment. If anyone is going to stan this thing to me openly, squealing, raving and madly giggling whatsoever, I'm going to calmly walk away and I probably will try to avoid that someone like she/he has a contagious disease.
I'm currently just here for the behind the scenes drama of producing this thing. That bitch of a non-author needs to be taught a lesson hard and well. I hope she and her devoted 700+K followers on twitter burn to the pits of...idk...hell? Yep. That's all I have to share and write about on this matter.
I swear I am nice, cultured, mild-mannered most of the time but this hype is something I just really feel seething hate for. I actually want this fiasco to be run to the ground, burning into pure ashes that can never, ever be pulled together again by whatsoever method.
I'm a loser because I never even added this here until today, circa June 21, 2015, 7:11 a.m. Philippines' timezone, and I'm supposed to be immersed in everything pop culture, including that of the west.
Regarding this, I have a lot to catch-up on that I've been tabling for days and days on end in favor of school work that never seems to finish itself (because my focus and motivation are very...well...fickle)...I'll do it in the summer.
Stay tuned for...
....a western pop music album review coming up in a bit...if I manage to survive this train wreck of a thesis alive in the following two weeks or so. Let me give you guys a hint: T _ _ _ L _ - Queen of the C _ _ _ _ _. It is going to be quite late for me to put it out there but it's necessary because...well, for the sake of saving the sorry state of western pop music, it's direly needed.
And since I have just finished dinner, I am going to take a short nap then wake up at maybe 2 or 3 this morning to work on stuff. Yep. Life. Two friends from home still hadn't handed me in their answered sheets but I'll be working on stuff anyhow because graduation day is looming in and I have a ton to catch up on.
Until the next post then! o/kg*