At the time of writing this, AKB48 have still to sell a million copies of their latest single “So long!”. They’ll no doubt make it up on the last day or through Oricon’s end of week sales adjustment but still, it makes you wonder doesn’t it?
But that was last week, we’re here to talk about the stuff that’s coming out this week so let’s get right to it.
NMB48 – “Teppen Tottande!”
We’ll start things off with NMB48 who are releasing their debut album this week. I’m not entirely sure why they’re releasing an album this early in their career but I guess it helps to be backed by an agency like Yoshimoto. The album features all of the group’s singles to date, along with the more notable b-sides and a handful of new songs thrown into the mix. Anyone hoping for more “Ha!”-esque songs is going to be left rather disappointed as none of the new songs really have that kind of flair. The title track “Teppen Tottande!” comes the closest but some unfortunate composition choices take much of the shine off. If you haven’t been keeping up with AKS’s best asset for whatever reason then this is the album for you. Otherwise, this is an incredibly puzzling outing that I can’t help but feel came about twelve months too early.
Party Rockets – “Miraie“
Party Rockets are up next, with their second single “Miraie”. For those of us who are a little behind, Party Rockets are one of many idol groups who are attempting to ride the current wave of hard rock or metal inspired music which is very much in vogue at the moment. They’ve been doing it pretty well so far although “Miraie” carries a slightly darker sound than their previous outing. Still, if you’re into the more rockish end of the idol spectrum then this one might be worth checking out. I think the group has a lot of potential but I think their sound has a ways to go before they fully realize it. Still, it’s early days yet.
Sakura Gakuin – “My Graduation Toss“
Last up we have Sakura Gakuin who are releasing a very important single this week. “My Graduation Toss” is group leader Nakamoto Suzuka’s graduation single so the significance of this release is huge. It’s perhaps fitting then that the song picked for Suzuka’s graduation marries the group’s overall idol pop sound with a lot of rock elements that allude to her work in BABYMETAL. I’ve always found Sakura Gakuin to be really hit or miss and I didn’t enjoy the graduation single that they put out last year so I’m really happy that this one appears to have hit all of the right notes. Definitely the most important release of the week so go check it out and give Suzuka a good sendoff.
ALSO THIS WEEK:
I can’t really recommend any of the other stuff that’s coming out this week so if you want to venture off down that path then you’re on your own. Like I said, the Sakura Gakuin release is the most important thing coming out this week so if you’re going to check out anything then that should probably be your first port of call.