Arashi's latest single topped the Oricon again! yay~! with over 425,000 in sales for its first week which is really wonderful (*≧∀≦)ノ！！！ and perhaps even more impressive is that while multiple editions can surely help perhaps to raise sales figures, "To be free" was released in a single CD + DVD edition breaking the recent trends of J~pop releases.
Interestingly "To be free" is rare single a~side release with no coupling song(s) other than its karaoke track but more than makes up for this with the inclusion of a most pretty and awesome pv♥ and extensive "making of!" The first press edition comes with a bonus 16 page photo booklet and hmm they're actually counting the liner notes/single jacket as being part of the pages so that's the reason that when counting the scans I've included below, they don't add up to 16 XD! And even if you're not an Arashi fan in particular still please give the pv♥ a watch as the song and everything about the visual ambiance is so so beautiful~.
I've included both the audio and video just above, "To be free" as its title suggests has a sweetly euphoric and soaring melody and pacing about it ♪♪～＊、from the wall of acoustics to its sweeping orchestration it's all set to the blue skies and wide open landscapes as seen through a background window. In many ways the simple and understated set design with minimal props only adds to the video's aura of "freedom" and still so great that even with their simpler pvs Arashi members are still rehearsed through storyboards. A nice touch too I thought was the use of an actual projection screen in the background versus the much more common practice of utilizing a blue screen. Also I'm curious as to where it was all being filmed as towards the end of the "making of" you can hear/see a few of the boys mentioning and shuddering about just how cold it was (・д・`*)！！！．．．and humor and kidding around as always♥ is abound throughout, they just have so much fun together during their projects!
Arashi♥, always so stylish~* and sexy!!
~"To be free" making of…..
Released~* on the very same day as "To be free" however I still haven't heard the sales totals for Riida's solo single release of "Yukaitsu~kai Kaibutsukun."
The song no doubt needs the listener to be familiar with the drama role it's connected to as then the style as well as Riida's awesome vocals can be understood much better for this track~. I carefully peeled off the sticker on the outer wrapper as it's the only visual of Riida to be found on the single….I'm sort of wacky like that…(^q^)! This song is so wonderfully dramatic and very much play~like in it's approach and the more I listen the more I ♥ it!