········· release Music Video for new track “Suraido”

As you may have noticed, I haven’t been writing here in a while: working twelve-hours night shifts every single day sadly leaves me with pretty much no time to do anything, other than sleeping and relaxing a few hours. My writing routine will resume from mid-September on, when the hot season will finally come to an end. Thanks for your patience!

I’m taking these 10 minutes of my time today to write about this new ········· (or Dots) song, that I feel like suggesting to all of you guys. Just like other aficionados of the Alt Idol current, I’ve been talking about this enigmatic Shoegaze Idol unit for a while now, and in case you wanna know more about it, here’s an in-depth article about I wrote for ARAMA! JAPAN.

This new song from Dots is called Suraido (or Slide), and it’s produced by Azusa Suga, guitarist of well-known Shoegaze outfit FOR TRACY’S HYDE; this is not the first time the man collaborates with these enigmatic girls, as he’s one of the constant contributors behind the project along with other celebrated songwriters of the Japanese Shoegaze scene. The track is a straight-to-the-point number that’s not afraid to highlight the characteristics of the sound adopted by the unit, and the execution results detailed and never banal, successfully conveying the feelings typical of this genre; the vocal performance by the girls gives a huge boost to the whole atmosphere, and the balance between their voices as well as the performance itself sounds stronger and more convincing than ever. Definitely a pleasant and solid number to release ahead of a 70 minutes-long single.

Be sure to watch the video and listen to the track down here. See you guys soon!

– Alex

CY8ER comes back with more members and a catchy tune. I like it.

Electro Idol unit CY8ER is back with a new track titled Kakushiemu, the group’s first appearance since three more members joined the project (excluding the much discussed hazmat suits handshake event… gotta love the marketing).

After a pretty nice single as a trio back in April, with this new track CY8ER leans towards a much catchier and melodic approach: Kakushiemu is indeed an upbeat – and uplifting – Techno-pop number that revolves around a playful melody hiding a subtle oriental flavor, that kicks off the track nicely and greatly enhances the chorus when coupled with the girls’ catchy vocals. The beat and bass lines bring clear Techno-pop vibes to the table, sometimes venturing into the Dempa field with brief yet frantic rhythmic outbursts that give a nice touch of variety to the track.

This is a nice come back for CY8ER; even though I still don’t quite understand the meaning behind the addition of new members, it’s good to see them back full of energy and catchy Electro tunes, because that is exactly what I expect when clicking on a CY8ER video. Nice one.

TeddyLoid just killed Aina’s voice, and I can’t stand it.

TeddyLoid. This guy.

After releasing one of the worst Japanese albums of the last few years, a senseless chaotic mess that goes by the name of Silent Planet, the young producer had the worst possible idea: make a followup to that mess of a record. And, of course, it’s not that he got better or anything, since the only thing he apparently did in recent times is to act like he’s the new Tetsuya Komuro or Yasutaka Nakata, when his actual greatest accomplishment was updating his twitter profile pic.

So, of course, I stopped caring about this guy. He kept releasing trash, like that DAOKO track (a girl that apparently only tofubeats cared to valorize properly), while showing signs of a chronic disease, that makes him act cool by adopting a musical direction that died a long time ago, that “”dubstep”” Japan briefly adopted in its mainstream circles and then immediately dropped because, well, it was already too late when they realized it was even a thing.

Then this morning, while I was painting a wooden window as the good Italian low-paid craftsman I am, I received a notification on Facebook: a friend of mine posted a video on a group I follow: it’s a new TeddyLoid video. Fine, another trash song I can avoid. Then I look closely at my phone and I notice “feat. Aina The End (BiSH)“.

No way. What the hell is going on. Jesus Christ, the wooden window can wait. But not Aina.

Guys. Seriously. This is the most embarrassing, pathetic, obsolete, forced piece-of-shit track I listened in a long time. Yes, TO THE END is the same TeddyLoid stuff. This guy is stuck in a time capsule from 2010 or something. The wubz. Guys, THE WUBZZZ. Not even Skrillex does that shit anymore, because it was already old when HE started doing it.

But that’s not new with TeddyLoid. He’s pretty much the only guy on this planet that thinks “”dubstep”” is still a cool mainstream genre that’s selling. And even outside those moments, the rest of the track just sounds old, repetitive, and genuinely bad. It truly gave me an headache, and I listened to it like, what, three times maybe?

But here comes the real problem: Aina. Now, don’t get me wrong: I love this girl, I love her to death. She has a wonderful voice, great interpretation, strong charisma, and a personality that flows through every note she sings. She’s a great dancer too. And that’s why it hurts so bad. Because her talent went completely wasted with this track.

This fucking dude vocoded the shit out of her voice. Yes, he DIGITALLY ALTERED Aina’s voice, making it unrecognizable. It sounds bad. It kills all her personality, charisma, talent, everything. I don’t wanna sound like a fanboy asshole, even though I probably am, and it surely isn’t the first time something like this happens in the history of music, but I can’t stand this on a personal level. It’s terrible. It’s like autotuning Bruce Dickinson’s voice: Who the fuck would even think of something like that? No one. (that’s not a comparison of course).

TeddyLoid’s got a big problem: he can’t valorize nor adapt to the artists he collaborates with. He literally butchers their talent. Everything from Silent Planet on, when he basically started to have the right connections to the right artists, was a clear proof of this. If you choose an artist, you have to be sure you can get the best out of him/her to reach your vision as producer, not killing their talent and personality to just do whatever you feel like doing to be cool, cause the result is gonna be terrible, and you’re definitely not going out as the cool producer you think you are. And no, I’m no producer myself: it’s history that proves how this approach is just wrong.

I genuinely think TeddyLoid is one of the worst and most overrated producers I ever heard. He’s all smoke and no fire, making himself big with other artists’ names, while killing their talent in the process. Honestly, I’d rather listen to my dog barking at my neighbor than listening to this track. I’m just sad I had to see this excruciating process apply to one of my favorite singers of the Alt Idol scene.

TeddyLoid. This guy. He would sure as hell be more talented at painting this wooden window than making music.

– Alex

Idol Mayu Tomita regains consciousness after two weeks from assault

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Mayu Tomita (20), the Idol stabbed several times by a man before a show on May 21st, has opened her eyes today, and regained consciousness for the first time after two weeks fighting for her life.

According to Japanese newspapers, despite being stabbed over twenty times, her vital organs are apparently safe.

When Mayu’s condition will get better (hopefully soon) Police will ask for details about the incident. In the meanwhile, the man that assaulted the girl after stalking her for months (Tomohiro Iwazaki, 27) is currently under arrest.

It makes me really glad to see Mayu’s conditions getting better, and I hope she will be able to recover from this terrible experience as soon as possible. This girl needs nothing but love and support now.

I’ll keep you updated.

Source: Nippon Television, Sankei, TOKYO GIRLS’UPDATE

– Alex

Young female Idol in critical conditions after getting stabbed by a man

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Credits for all the informations in this article go to The Japan Times.

Today, at 5PM Japanese Time, in a building near the Musahi-Koganei JR station, 20 years-old Idol Mayu Tomita (ex member of the group Secret Girls, not to be confused with the ex AKB48 member) was stabbed twenty times by a “fan” attending a meeting event set before her show, originally planned for the evening. Mayu is now at the hospital in critical conditions, and hasn’t regained consciousness yet. The man, 27 years-old Tomohiro Iwazaki, confessed everything and has been immediately arrested.

This isn’t the first time this kind of accident happens in a meet and greet/handshake event, but this is by far the worst that has ever happened.

Mayu warned the police earlier this month about a man, named Iwazaki, writing to her obsessively on Twitter and on her blog. So it’s clear that the Idol was victim of stalking by a man with serious mental disorders.

It’s honestly beyond me why the police didn’t check this man when the girl warned about him at first, which makes me think, that this is something that could have been maybe avoided. But it’s not the right time to talk about this now.

All I hope is that Mayu can make it. I really hope so.

I’ll let you know if there’s any update.

– Alex