Hello! Project’s dream pairing!! Abe Natsumi & Yajima Maimi (C-ute)- “Juurokusai no koinante”

The long wait is finally over and all J-Pop fans can really rejoice with this latest and most creative collaboration between two Hello! Project  family members and whether you're in the mood for something lively and upbeat or a graceful ballad, you're sure to find what you're looking for with this release! And while the ever so diverse Tsunku didn't have a hand in penning either track's lyrics or music, what we are presented with is quite a different flavor of song with a distinctly different approach.

The limited edition version arrived 2 days ago and personally I really think that H!P has started off the new year with a definite gem! "Juurokusai no koinante" is suuuuuuuch a catchy song and it's even got more hooks than a tackle box does!! The song opens with it's infectiously melodic chorus and……wait a minute….it reminds me of something. Have you ever heard a song and thought that perhaps part of it sounded like another song you know? While you'd think that songwriter's would have already used up every possible note connection, the possibilities certainly remain deep and vast as this feeling doesn't strike often and for me personally is actually quite rare. Okay I'm not talking about a song that uses sampling from another's or when the arrangement is blatantly similar, for me the most recent for the latter being when I first heard Nishida Hikaru's "Totsuzen no natsu" which is the very essence of Captain & Tennille's "Love Will Keep Us Together" as they are a splitting image of one another instrumentally in the verse portions although the lyrics' melody in Hikaruchan's song is distinctly different. Rather this feeling that I'm referring to here is when there is a substantial similarity in melody but it's presented in a most subtle way. The last time this feeling struck me was when I first listened to Every Little Thing's (by the way I love older ELT and will have to make a little post about them in the future!) "Deatta koro no youni" and for a few days I just couldn't figure out the song that part of its melody reminded me of. Eventually it hit me as a Zard song came to mind and just now I've started that old cycle again as right now I can't remember which Zard song it was. 😛 At least I know it was Zard though. 🙂 So to make this long story even longer :P, for the past 2 days I've been humming the chorus section of "Juurokusai no koinante" to myself and just a few minutes ago it finally came to me! The chorus of "Juurokusaino koinante" has a subtle similarity to Nakayama Miho's J-Pop classic "Sekaijuu no dare yori kitto." It's not a splitting image but there's just something about their structure that reminds me of one another although towards the end of "Juurokusai no koinante's" chorus the melody does take a detour of its own. 

"Juurokusai no koinante" is a heavily "orchestrated" driven song that wastes no time in reeling you in from the very start with its immediately bouncy intro which goes right into its aforementioned chorus instead of the standard verse first format. A very cute and up front piano enhances the cutely repetitive verse portions which lead up to the nice change of pace pre-chorus arrangement which then lends itself seamlessly into the wonderful chorus. And what we have here, albeit the year has just begun, is a H!P song that already sets the bar up pretty high for the rest of the year's releases! Nacchi & Maimichan present so many possibilities for the producers' imagination and starting with their vocals which blend so well together and even better than I expected, the lyrics also are a custom fit with purpose as portions of it express their different visions of youth and age from each other's prospective. Moritaka Chisato's classic "Watashi ga obasan ni natte mo" comes to mind here as well. When it comes to H!P, I consider Nacchi's vocals to be in the upper tier along with recently "graduated" Gocchin and Ayaya (those with great vocal character & control) to name just a couple as these definitely aren't the exclusive ones that I view in this light and with that much anticipation surrounding this release was to hear how Maimichan's strong yet still developing vocals would match up with Nacchi's. The results couldn't have been better as this somewhat odd coupling really do compliment each other vocally and it also draws the perfect line between youth and adulthood as their distinct vocal expressions are representative of just that. I imagine that this song may represent a large bucket of water that can then help douse and appease the loudly spoken desire for more upbeat songs versus ballads that I've heard many fans express. Still though with this unique pairing of "senior" H!P member and its youth joining together much of my anticipation laid in the hopes for both an upbeat song as well as a well written ballad and this release presents just that.

The coupling with song Watashi no koibito nanoni" answers the question…hmm but can they perform a ballad together? 🙂 There are beautiful patches of harmonization between Nacchi & Maimichan that give the impression that the two have been paired together for a much longer time as this type of song presents a great vehicle for their vocals to shine in a much more stated manner than what is usually approached in an upbeat song. "Watashi no koibito nanoni" is a wonderful lullaby of a ballad that will have you swaying along with it's soft and sweet cotton candy like melody in no time and with it's understated arrangement the vocals really carry this tune in the forefront. Think fluffy clouds of pink…okay I may be getting carried away there! 😛

As you can probably already guess by my fluffy pink clouds and song reminiscing above, I do hope that this duo, the odd couple of H!P do continue on as for them to become one of H!P's one single wonders would certainly be a shame and disappointment. And while this pairing is such a smart one, others that I'd like to see come to life albeit they'll probably remain in my imagination are: Nocchi & Manoeri, Kamei & Gakisan, Risakochan & Ayaya, and Nakki & Aichan. Haha and you thought that Nacchi & Maimichan were an odd coupling! 😛

With Momusu's upcoming new single opting for DVD bonuses while dropping the collectible booklet in their B version I became quite concerned that the days of collectible booklets were perhaps passed us and I was so happy to see that the limited edition of "Juurokusai no koinante" comes with a 24 page photo booklet! So there's still hope for future releases! Maimichan has grown so tall and it's so cute to see little Nacchi her elder next to her in these photo shoots. The styling is elegant and soft and both members look so beautiful!! Well I think I've gushed enough for one day about my overall favorite H!P member and favorite C-ute member being teamed together in this wonderful release! 🙂

Now I'm really looking forward to the pv DVD single which will be released on February 6th! H!P sure likes to make me wait! Below are the rest of the scans of the LE's booklet.

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About MorningBerryz

Lover and free spirit who's interests in Japanese culture and the like are insatiable. I am of pure Japanese/Okinawan descent, love my cats, sleep and am a bit naughty at times :).
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12 Responses to Hello! Project’s dream pairing!! Abe Natsumi & Yajima Maimi (C-ute)- “Juurokusai no koinante”

  1. paul.thomas says:

    I noticed that Dohhh Up loaded the PV for this the other day, I need to check it out, as I've yet to hear the song or see the PV and from reading your comments on the tracks they sound like they're going to be a good listen. I need to get back in to the habit of ordering CDs again, what with last month relax as I try to save some money I've gotten lazy.The accompanying book looks great, some really amazing shots of both NAcchi and Maimi. Hopefully with the Morning Musume single coming out without a booklet the included DVD will be a piece of amazing work and not just an alternative PV and a bit of random footage, my fingers are tightly crossed.


  2. strawberrie says:

    I can't wait to recieve my copy. I got an e-mail sometime late last night about they fnally ship out my CD. YesAsia does sucks sometimes but on the other hand it does come in handy for first press / limited editions that are sold out at CD Japan. And the free shipping does come in handy sometimes.


  3. mizunohi says:

    This looks like such a beautiful release, I was so curious when this duet was announced and I wasn't dissapointed. I'm sad I didn't get to order this single, but Koharu beat it out for my latest order XD The PB is so beautiful and elegant, Nacchi's elegance matched really well with Maimi! This release reminds me of Nacchi's duet with Okeisan, it remains one of my favourite H!P songs!
    It seems Tsunku is letting all the c-ute members get into a different project now, Erika and Kanna are the only ones left! I hope these groups continue, we've been deprived of shuffle and one-shot groups too long!


  4. Ah you've just had the best H!P vacation and all of your hard work and savings were definitely worth it!! I hope you love this song as much as I do although I can be quite easy to please! 😛 Seriously though it really is an outstanding J-Pop song and I think you'll really love it! They sound so great together and all of my uncertainty was quickly thrown out the window. They look so adorable together and I can't wait to hear them perform live. I'm crossing my fingers too that the b type DVD will be something more than an alternate version but I am a bit worried. With this release still having a booklet at least there's still hope for future releases to continue with this collectible. I'm really puzzled by Momusu's decision to not include a booklet with their upcoming release. I'm guessing it's to cut costs but that's really just speculation and perhaps seeing what's actually included on the additional DVD will shed some light on their decision.


  5. Free shipping is great and I hope that your single arrives soon!! YesAsia has saved me too! When the LE of Arashi's single "Happiness" went out of print on Cdjapan before I could order it they still had it available and I could breath a huge sigh of relief!! Plus they sent me a cute little dog furniture piece. 🙂


  6. I have that Okeisan & Nacchi duet single too! "Haha to musume no duet song" is such a beautiful melody and I really love "koi" too! They have a really great contrast in vocal styles and just the sound of their voices together made this release so endearing. Likewise Nacchi can be a good adult figure to Maimichan even if she's not that much older and I'm looking forward to seeing the pv's making of segment to see how and if they bonded together during the production of this release. I'm happily surprised that you know this Okeisan & Nacchi duet as I always thought of it as kind of a "hidden" gem as I rarely hear fans talk about it. :)It really is time to bring back the shuffle groups!! It used to be every year that we'd be treated to them but that's really fallen off lately. You're right, only Erikachan & Kannachan from C-ute are left to be in a special unit and I hope that UFA has something planned for them soon this year.


  7. mizunohi says:

    I actually came across the single by accident and didn't realize what it was for the longest time, I just liked listening to it XD I would love to hear Maimi and Nacchi sing it together, kind of like "passing down the baton", it would be beautiful in concert! ^^
    I'm very curious to see if/what Kanna and Erika get put in… I'd love to see a KannaxKamei duet and I've always thought Erika would be amazing in a sing with Keichan and Marippe! Who do you think they would go best with?


  8. Wow you came across this single by accident?! It would have been bugging me endlessly as I would've wanted to know whom it was by! It's such a catchy song and I'm so happy that H!P's year is starting off with such a great single!! Hopefully there will be some live t.v. performances and I'm sure they'll team up in the next H!P concert event. Hmmm…a Kanna/ Kamei pairing sounds perfect…another one I'd love to see would be Kanna & Aichan. Maybe I'm just overly inspired by this single but I really like the dynamic created when a senior member is paired with H!P's youth. Although Maimichan is C-ute's leader, Erikachan is the senior member of the group so I'm thinking how about a pairing with Yukosan. Yukosan would be great with anyone and I'm sure they'd sound great together and really bond with one another as Yukosan can be very nurturing.


  9. mizunohi says:

    Kanna and Aichan would be amazing, I'm sure if they did a ballad or an upbeat song it would blow us out of the water! My worry on that is how Aichan usually gets a larger spotlight than other H!P members, and she has such a strong presence, so she might overpower Kanna… ^^;;;;
    I never thought of Erika with Yukosan! That would be incredible! Yuko is so powerful, I'm sure she would tap deeper into Erika's potential! I loved seeing Maimi's elegance and maturity shine through and I'm sure Erika would be much the same! ^^


  10. That really is true as Aichan has such a strong presence but she really can be nurturing too and in this dream duo maybe she would help Kannachan develop more. Hahah I'm over analyzing aren't I?! 😛 Hmm…the pairing came to mind I guess because I kind of see Erikachan as a more mature member in H!P and not just because she's the eldest in C-ute but in the way that she carries herself when you see the group in candid moments. And you love Yukosan too!! 🙂


  11. mizunohi says:

    You're right, Aichan does have a nurturing attitude. It's mostly come out recently, especially towards the younger members of H!P, don't you think? Maybe it's because she's leader now 😛 Kanna seems to have not reached her potential yet and a duo with Aichan would probably be a "make or break" situation. We could see some amazing thigs come from it! –it kind of reminds me of Kame's verse of JKM… 😀 She definetly grew into her role! ^^… thats what originally made me think of Kanna with Kamechan!
    I'd be interested to see what kind of attitude Yuko would show if she was paired with someone half her age XD Yet another side of the original Momusu yankii! I wonder if they would have a ballad or a faster song… A medium paced song like Iki wo Kasanemashou and Amasugita Kajitsu come to mind for me (maybe something in between?)


  12. There's some great footage of Aichan helping Kohachan with the dance choreography for her debut appearance in "Iroppoi Jirettai" and this has really become more prominent with her ascent to group leader but I think it's really been a natural transition for her as I think it's just part of her personality. When Jun Jun & Lin Lin made their debut appearance on Utaban, Aichan was kind of like a mother figure for them in a light sense and it's really endearing to see her in this role. 🙂 Ah kamei & Kannachan would make a great pairing too! I love watching her in "Joshikashimashi Monogatari" and especially when she starts getting nearer and nearer to the camera and just about touches it when everyone's crowding around her…her reaction is almost as if she did and she just may have! 😛 I'm so glad that they didn't edit that out or re-shoot it and as little of a thing it is it always makes me smile whenever I watch it. 🙂 Yukosan is so fun and maybe she's be up to almost any type of song! Hahah if she were paired with a member really young I would anticipate the making of footage to be a real gem too! She has a great humorous side to her which is her "no nonsense" personality but it's all in fun and I'd love to see it come out in a situation like this! 🙂 "Iki wo kasanemashou" is such a beautiful song…I'm listening to it right now. 🙂


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