「TGIF」Idols♥ Unzipped will not be seen this weekend as it’s being
preempted Mano~empted by ManoFriday & ManoSaturday♥.
Idols♥ Unzipped will return next Friday ^^.
Sure summer’s over, however….
~Hot Summer Reads 2015~
Sometimes the greatest of heat-generating books don’t even have words in them.
Welcome to our island paradise~♥ in the Pacific! Idol style!! =)….
It’s times like these where those words by Nelly seem most appropriate not to mention…. whether you’re Dark Helmet or Darth Vader, something tells me that there must’ve been a whole lotta galactic~sweat going on inside that suit!~! =P
I’ve nothing but this Sure antiperspirant to share with the Dark Helmeted and immensely sweaty one, hmm.. I wonder if intergalactic rumors would start spreading if anyone were to find out he secretly uses such a feminine product? =P
Now sing along with Nelly, you so know the lyrics right =)….
Well, we can “fix” that Σ(￣◇￣*)！
Sure Summertime’s now departed from our islands, however this glossy gravure masterpiece arrived on store shelves last month just beating out the arrival of Fall making it my final Hot Summer Read of the 2015 smolder campaign! ^^
And while this isn’t Manoeri’s～♡ first photographic-rodeo shot here in the Hawaiian islands, did you notice something’s a bit different about her here? No it isn’t that she’s more adora~cute than ever here as Manoeri’s already been to that idol~ly~mountain-summit many a times in both her H!P days as well as her post-H!P career. It’s the Mano♡Heat index as for the first time Manoeri’s truly unleashing her Mano♡Sensuality upon us as in sensual-themes galore (・д・`*)！！！No need to panic though as there is no absence of ManoClothing to speak of….. well um maybe just a tiny bit of “ManoNaked” in this one shot although you may swear that that particular lighting may just be playing tricks upon your wandering mind (￣▽￣) 。
The latest shashinshuu from Mano♡eri is A4 sized and is printed upon VERY VERY thick stock/high quality paper which makes this book rather thick girth-wise I must say and sometimes even in the Book World yes size does matter =). Also included is a making of DVD which you’re gonna want to watch… really! Appropriately titled “ESCALATION”, consider this to be a ManoMasterpiece of gravure proportions and while it’s a bit suspect that this book isn’t obi clad with the uttering of the words “Otona e….” in some form or another as a tad bit of a warning towards unsuspecting eyes, subliminally it’s written all over its cover or rather its outer glossy dust jacket which presents the very first of ManoIsms to come…. that being ManoGamesmanship =P!~! As you’ll soon see the cover photo is depicting Manoeri engaged in ManoTennis and without question if any of us wore such a wardrobe to the tennis courts it would inevitably convey some ManoFlirting which ultimately would result in ManoAdvantage whether intended or not, I mean just wait until you see her skirt ^^! ~~~> YES the very second Manoeri goes to pick up her very first tennis ball from the ground it’ll be ManoDaydreamin’ boys!!! As in it’ll be 40~LOVE, SET & MATCH!… before the guy knows what’s hit him! Not to mention the allure of ManoCleavage too =O….
..Hmm… see if you can umm crack the code just below:
I honesty don’t know how guys can walk around with those things* all the time =P~!
Now before we get to “ESCALATION”, the complete scans let’s take a really really abbreviated tour down memory lane care of this very blog where you’re probably aware of just how long and how much I’ve adored Manoeri over the years as there’s like a zillion (only “slightly” exaggerated =P!) posts about her here going back to that very moment those sighs* heard across the idol universe first struck a chord and there was much ManoShopping to be done and then more obsession and more Umm Mano~Obsession in a most healthy way though of course! =)
~Phase: Ongaku Gatas~
~Phase: Ongaku Gatas~
(originally posted on September 13th, 2007)
Hello! Project’s Futsal Club’s first release arrived with an order yesterday and it was the first to go into the player. H!P has released a few sports related songs in the past but this release is something quite different. “Narihajimeta koi no BELL” strays away from an anthem sound and what Tsunku has written here could easily have been Morning Musume’s next single. It’s that good!! I decided to get the limited edition CD which comes with a bonus DVD which is unique in it’s content as instead of the extra PV clip, we are treated to some very special member profile VTR footage. Here we learn each member’s position played (some member’s positions are yet to be determined), birthdate, and place of birth. Also included are individual member comments and photo shoot footage. This bonus DVD runs approximately 18 minutes. I also received their PV DVD single which runs approximately 25 minutes and includes along with the original version of their PV, a “close up ver.”, and making of segment which is really well done especially when considering how many new faces they needed to introduce here. The cover of the LE is a nice collage of the members while the DVD has a nice image of them holding up their banner. I do like the DVD’s inner jacket picture the most though as they’re standing in a row and everyone’s holding onto the banner which also allows you to see who’s the tallest and shortest. lol. I have no idea why that’s important. =P
This release marks the much anticipated return of Konkon to H!P!! When considering that her parting shashinshuu was titled “See You Again” I guess she wasn’t kidding! =) Her return from graduating from H!P is unprecedented and a much welcomed event which I imagine all fans are celebrating. If you’re unfamiliar with Konkon then 2 clips that will provide a great crash course on her would be the legendary “Bakajo” test where we found out that Konkon’s extremely intelligent (most intelligent amongst her fellow Momusu members at the time of that lineup, and I’d imagine she still would be even going against the complete H!P family) and the hilarious “Bob Sapp video game challenge” where the members couldn’t defeat him physically so Konkon dominated him with her mind! ^^ While there’s indeed a lot more to Konkon than brains!! I think these clips would do well in introducing her to anyone who’s unfamiliar her. It’s as if she never left as she seamlessly has rejoined H!P and I’m very happy that she’s a part of this release and futsal team as goal keeper as she was before. Konkon’s vocals add a sweet spark to this release and just her presence brings a heightened level of professionalism to this project.
Ongaku Gatas is a well built unit that balances veteran members along with …did I mention that there are Eggs in this recipe?! One of the early dilemmas that one faces when seeing a new group is learning everyone’s names and then putting a face to that name over time. So before going any further let’s meet the 6 Hello! Project Eggs that are in this great unit:
#1. Noto Arisa is tied with Mano Erina for the top spot of favorite Egg in this unit. I have to admit that Mano Erina seems to be the one that the producers are promoting the most and is quite evident when watching the PVs as they really key in on her seemingly the most. Noto Arisa runs second in that regard but I’ve listed her here 1st as my favorite as it all came down to the tiebreaker which was “set up” (in my own mind =P) in case this occurred. Tiebreaker question: “Who’s cuter?” Noto Arisa by a slim margin. But being more serious here, she does to me seem to be the most comfortable in front of the camera and the most “natural” of all the Eggs (No steroids or anything artificial added ever). Well so much for serious. Anyway here’s the most substantial part: she reminds me of Aibon. It’s not the way she speaks or her personality but rather something about her looks. Are you as confused as I was LOL =)!
#2. Mano Erina originally was #1 until I watched all of the making of footage and that brought out the future star in Noto Arisa and then …tiebreak. When you first watch the PVs it’s definitely Mano Erina who stands out the most out of all the Eggs. Her charm point for me seems to be her kind eyes. Have another look at her picture, yes there is definitely a kindness there! She dances really well in the PVs and she like Arisa also has the aura of a future star. As you watch the PVs take note of those insanely cute sighs that have been appointed to her for this song. If the tiebreaker question had involved sighs, then Erina would be in the top spot right now! If someone suddenly graduates from Momusu or decides to walk on the wild side (ahem! idol scandal, let’s all hope not!!) then I’d say have Erina & Arisa jan ken po to see who gets to join the group next!
#3. I have to admit it was all a bit of a toss up from here on but Sawada Yuri’s dimples are just incredible!! There not quite visible in this picture but when you watch the making of footage you’ll soon realize that she has the deepest dimples in the entire world! It’s amazing!!! Even with a slight grin they become the most defined dimples ever. But Sawada Yuri isn’t just about dimples as she’s quite adorable too!
#4. Mutou Mika is by far the most shy Egg in this unit. But I have a feeling that there’s an idol in there just waiting to get out of the carton! I’ll call it painfully shy and during their self introductions she spoke for the shortest time and looked like she couldn’t wait for the next Egg to go. Well there were actually only 3 Eggs present in this part of the clip but if she were auditioning for the “shy” part then she’d be starring in that role as soon as the movie production gets going.
#5. Sengoku Minami…I think she has the coolest sounding name of all the Eggs in this unit. She kind of looks like someone I might’ve gone to school with and I’m not sure what that means.
#6. Korenaga Miki has those “classic” Japanese eyes and she doesn’t look like anyone I might’ve gone to school with. I guess that means that I didn’t go to school in Japan. =P So there you have it! 3/5th’s of Ongaku Gatas “brought” to life by my “sometimes” strange observations.
The rest of this unit is comprised of great veteran H!P members including Yossi as captain, Rikachan who’s in charge of bringing sexy, Konkon who’s finally returned home, and Satoda Mai, whom Tsunku has been neglecting lately and you might as well consider her as a solo artist as really what is Country Musume at this point?!
~Ongaku Gatas “Narihajimeta koi no BELL” (pv)~
One of Tsunku’s finest!!! ….and although Ongaku Gatas only briefly released music, they were such a high impact group back then no doubt. Also see “Come Together” which is probably their best single albeit it’s ManoAbsent. Also while I did locate in storage my other two Ongaku Gatas pv DVD singles “Yattarouze!” and “Come Together” ..for some odd reason “Narihajimeta koi no BELL” wasn’t with them and so I’ve embedded the pv above instead of uploading it to WP. I really must find it!!
The idea of this song and unit reminds me of another great collaboration which was done in this same manner. “Gambacchae!” combined the powers of Momusu with H!P Kids and the end result was a wonderful song and PV. “Narihajimeta koi no BELL” is a boogie wonderland dance song! While I’m not urging you to put up or go buy a disco ball just yet, this song has a really powerful groove that might just get you onto the dance floor! The life line and driving force of this song is it’s awesome galloping bass line. I put this bass line up against anything else that H!P has ever recorded and I believe that this one would come out in the company of the best. Add in the highlights of the horn section and intricate drums. Mix well with fine vocals. Let play for 4 minutes and 30 seconds. I believe we now have another candidate for H!P song of the year! Another thing to note about this unit is that there are no “weak” singers here. Some may question Rikachan’s vocals but she really shines in this unit and also adds a nice sultry touch to the group as well. I’m quite possibly most impressed with Yossi’s vocals as I’ve never heard her sing this way before! The overwhelming feeling that you get when you watch the original PV is how much Yossi really commands this song and it’s most fitting as she’s Captain of the group on and off of the field. While watching this entire release Yossi really comes across as an authoritive figure and so much that I can’t help but think that she has really grown into this role over time and it’s ironic that it comes after she’s graduated from Momusu. Yossi was a great leader for Momusu. I just think that she’s really grown in this area since leaving the group.
The whole hook to this song feeds off of the incredible bass line and lends itself easily to the smooth harmonies which have just a little bit of bite to them and with this gem I believe that Tsunku has yet again written another future classic.
The coupling with song “DREAMIN’~ Gatas Brilhantes H.P. no ouenka~” screams anthem from the very beginning literally but it still doesn’t comply with the style of H!P’s past sports related songs as those performed by DEF.DIVA and GAM were more of the “chanting” type of songs. “DREAMIN’…” is a bit “brighter” sounding than the title track and has a very uplifting melody which sounds perfect sung in a choir style. Symbolically this “choir” style represents what is means to be a team with everyone singing together as there’s no “i” in team but happily there is one in choir. 😛 Yossi provides the only solo vocals but it’s done as an intro to the song (as Captain), during the middle break, and as an outro phrase only. After thinking about it for awhile…”DREAMIN’…” is like “Dekkai uchuu ni ai ga aru” on Red Bull. Happy, optimistic, and sunny (sugar free version not available).
The original and close up versions of their PV enhances the mood of the song utilizing swaying and tilted camera movements and while the idea of this might not sound ideal to the viewer it really does work to perfection here. Unlike a lot of H!P’s dance choreography in the past when it comes to groups, the choreography here was designed to highlight and individually feature every single member of this unit. The dark look of the PV combined with their dark outfits are really mesmerizing to look at and the contrast created by the light in the background couldn’t look any cooler! A great aspect of the close up version is that they chose to stay with the swaying camera effect rather than use a stationary or horizontally moving one. It really adds a nice touch to this version as some close up versions in the past are at times borderline boring dare I say. Don’t forget to listen and watch for Mano Erina’s cute sighs!!
The beginning of the making of segment gives us a unique look at dance rehearsals before the actual shooting begins and it’s amusing how veteran members Yossi and Rikachan are hamming it up for the (supplemental footage) camera while the H!P Egg members are being very serious! lol! Rikachan is at her playful best and even gives us a few sultry looks while also turning on that Rikachan charm. Rikachan also does a good job of interacting with the H!P Eggs throughout parts of this segment. Rikachan is also hit by their substantial differences in age! lol! This release acts as a really great spring board for all of the Eggs involved as they are each heavily featured here as well as in the PVs and there appears to be at least 2 future stars coming from this unit. As I mentioned earlier Noto Arisa really appears as the most comfortable and “natural” of all the Eggs as they are experiencing their first major release. Along with the behind the scenes look at the making of the PVs this making of of segment also helps fans get acquainted with the Eggs through individual VTR clips as well as comments from the 4 veteran members. I would suggest watching the PV DVD single’s making of segment along with the LE’s bonus DVD as they compliment each other very well in delivering a complete Ongaku Gatas experience.
~Mano Erina “Manopiano” (live from concert tour INTRODUCTION)~
Back then I’d had a couple of days or so before writing this post to listen to Manoeri’s indie debut single “Manopiano” and my initial thought was how simple her vocals sounded here versus what we’ve heard on Ongaku Gatas recordings, albeit though, that often times the ensemble vocal settings of a group will greatly enhance vocal stylings but really there is something really pure, sweet and natural about this recording. And I have to assume that there was vocal direction from either the songwriter(s) or producers which directed Manoeri in some form or another in creating this single.
The song’s arrangement was done by Taisei and I really love the soft engaging flow which really has an understated score which helps to push Manoeri’s vocals to the front of the recording and there’s a simple elegance abound with the acoustic piano and acoustic guitar’s ballad arrangement. Ah I’d said the “ballad” word and really I had been so curious to see how other fans would react to Manoeri’s debut as ballads, although I love them so eternally, had back then been somewhat of a downer for other H!P fans and much of this can be evidenced by simply glancing at Ayaya’s sales at that same time and talk of her having something energetic come out soon or so fans had wished. Then came the notion of whether this could be overlooked because it is Manoeri? Then the most beloved of all H!P Eggs without a doubt. However being that this was an indie release the promise of sales figures would most likely not come to fruition as till this day I’m not sure if these types of sales figures are actually truthfully tracked. The thinking was that fan reaction would therefore be key~! “Manopiano” was such a sweet and intimate song and I remember just wanting to see a live performance as soon as possible! Gomaki debuted (solo) with “Ai no bakayarou” and we all got to witness her amazing growth as a performer and vocalist after that debut and while I’m not intending to compare Manoeri to Gomaki, I just truly felt that she would without doubt push further and further as a vocalist with continued efforts and weren’t we lucky to be along for that joyous ride! ^-^ Back then I’d not done a number rating before for songs however as seeing that my overall feelings towards this single at the time was at best vague in nature I professed my love for this song as being a 9.5 (out of 10) =P, I truly did love it!! and that half point would eventually be filled when Manoeri did indeed show up in a live performance on the piano as the live clip above reminisces!! ^-^.
The photography I thought was set in a warm and lightly elegant fashion for this release and Manoeri looked too adorable for words in each photo and it was really a perfect match for the song itself as they shared the same feeling giving the listener a visual which complimented the recording so perfectly.
Back then it was curious to see how long UFA would keep her releases in an indie format before going fully commercial and with what approach they’d continue on with her solo career. My first thoughts then were along the lines of a cutesy pop arrangement but that had clearly not been the case so far but when it came to H!P you could never know just what was coming next. (I had imagined Manoeri singing a “Momoiro kataomoi” (Ayaya) type of song……. ^-^)! Manoeri’s debut was really quite a mature one and I applauded this and I didn’t think it was to be frowned upon in any way ^^ …. albeit the majority of reaction back then wasn’t so positive as far as this song was concerned, still I was considered to be Mano-Puppy-Eyed =).
~Phase: “Sekai wa summer party”~
~Phase: “Sekai wa summer party~
Just as with Manoeri’s previous two releases in particular I remember feeling that Manoeri’s was coming into her own as a soloist, surely her previous singles had all been loved by me and *gushed* about ヽ(。´▽`。)ノ。。！！here previously ….it’s just that her last two singles were written much more in the ways of J-Pop from the early 90’s which was really an awesome era. To clarify, so much more of the compositions performed by artists and idol groups specifically during this time period were far less influenced by foreign musical styles, making the “J” in J-Pop truly “Japanese”-Pop~.
For each individual there’s most likely a very memorable song, album or perhaps artist which triggered your at the time new found love♥ for J-Pop. Personally I found some much needed freshness and originality in hearing J-Pop for the very first time during my early teens and it was during a time when I wasn’t in particular enjoying American music here…so it was almost a natural and meant to be attraction~.o(*´∀｀)o゛♥
While not drawing upon any parallel likenesses other than they’d both been H!P soloist in their careers, Gomaki’s solo work began with a pop style which was likened to American influences and she later began releasing more J-Pop flavored songs such as “Te wo nigitte” and “Scramble” as just two examples, but happily UFI (then) had launched Manoeri’s career in a much more J-Pop vein and while some songs have had a distinctive retro feel to them they’re much more true to Japan’s own stylings~.
And with this approach they’ve managed to flush out and capitalize on what is arguably Manoeri’s greatest appeal, that being her aura of being “the girl next door” type ….her sweet♥ and simple vocal stylings compliment and reinforce this image and I’m just guessing that there are more than a few guys out there who really *wish* that Manoeri actually lived next door to them~ just sayin’ (。ーωー。). Add in pianist to her resume and Manoeri back then was truly a rare star on the rise with a uniqueness about her.
~Mano Erina “Jasmine Tea” (live from concert tour INTRODUCTION)~
And while on the subject of 90’s styled idol J-Pop, “Jasmine Tea” which is the coupling with track to this single, embodies this to a T…. quite literally, giving this song an even somewhat nostalgic feeling about it. And hearing one of J-idol’s most celebrated groups in CoCo will give the listener a much better idea of this music time period’s likeness which is heard so much here.
Both Type A & Type B limited editions included DVDs with type A presenting the title track’s “Piano Ver.” pv while type B presented a fresh idea in including a “Live Ver.” pv. Both LE’s also included a third karaoke track as well as featured different cover artwork. The pv DVD single included the original version of the pv as well as a “Dance Shot Ver.” and approximately 16 minutes of making of footage =). It’s also so *wonderful* how Manoeri had just then been paired with her very own group of H!P Eggs backing her in her releases since her previous single, and just how Johnny’s Jr. support their sempai groups, surely they’d follow her outside of pv releases and onto the stage for her live events as can be seen initially in her debut concert DVD as well as in the “Live Ver.” clip which was included with her Type B CD single.
~Mano Erina “Sekai was summer party” (pv)~
~Mano Erina “Sekai wa summer party” (live from concert tour INTRODUCTION)~
“Sekai wa summer party” had one of the most fun and entertaining H!P pvs to come along in a long while! The visuals, props, magical suitcase, flying objects as well as the earth itself all making numerous appearances …so much to love about this video as it scores a perfect 10 on the cute-o-meter~ ＼(^o^)／☆! And the bouncy and instantly infectious rhythm of “Sekai wa summer party” (it’s charm point!) lends perfectly to the adorable dance choreography which *sparkles* with cuteness in the “Dance Shot Ver.” and with her Eggs in the entire clip it’s pure ~♥~! And how this transitions to the live stage can be seen in the “Live Ver.” clip where the collaboration between them in a live atmosphere adds such a priceless aspect giving the song an even more enjoyable vibe if that was then even possible!! If viewed alongside the other clips, the “Piano Ver.” may fair in comparison and in this little way it’s kind of an analogy of what would be a “close up version” which had typically been the less attractive of the bunch, but still the side to side panning of the camera, adorable set and especially Manoeri on piano♪♪~ all helped to keep this version as well on the must watch list. ＾ ＾
..and the song itself?
Of course it back then received:
We now interrupt this seemingly endless post to bring you the following “award nominated” excerpt from “YUKOIV” featuring it’s climatic scene!!!!
…Ohhh wrong middle =O!!!
But seriously =P,
I’m calling the fight!!!
..and officially naming Manoeri’s “ESCALATION” 2015’s ~Shashinshuu of the Year~ and there have been many many amazing photo collections this 2015 I can assure you! Simply click~* on the “Shashinshuu” category link located on the right hand side-bar for some idol~y photogenic reminiscing ~~~>=).
Sure we still have about three or so months to go in this calendar year however barring an upcoming 2015 Mayuyu♡ shashinshuu release (says my biased heart =P!) I just cannot imagine anyone getting more ManoTastic than what you’re about to witness here! =)
~Mano Erina “Escalation” making of~
Shot on location here!…. in lovely Mano~Hawaii, “ESCALATION” will treat your senses to the wide world of ever growing ManoIsms including but not limited to: ManoSultry, ManoTeasing, ManoBeach, ManoSweat, ManoSweet, Manoglamorous!, ManoSensuality, ManoLingerie, ManoBath, ManoBedtime, ManoSeduction, ManoBedroom~eyes ^^, ManoGorgeous, ManoBoogieboard!, ManoCute!, ManoWow, ManoCleavage, ManoNaughty…!, ManoSmoldering!, ManoBeautiful, ManoBikini, ManoMaybe~Naked?…. with enough ManoInsinuations to make one believe that there’ll 4 more months of Summer HEAT!!!! =O!~! And while some photos herein will inevitably make you wanna ManoBlush*, the abundance of Mano~Allure happening here is quite enough to nearly lure my inner~lesbian to come out and play, just sayin’ =)!~!
The above making of clip runs about 21 minutes, that’s twenty-one ManoMinutes♥ to LOVE ^^~!!
Now excuse me while I ManoCap you before you reach the main course of those “ESCALATION” scans =)….
As aforementioned, “ESCALATION” is quite the thick shashinshuu which can speak to the nearly 3 1/2 hours of scanning time I needed to complete it here:
And the Mano~ “naughtiness” perhaps begins here, all done so nonchalantly….
ManoEri’s quite “Koike Rina”~like here wouldn’t you say?
~My most favorite♥ photo of them all!!!!!~
It combines seamlessly all of the visual ManoIsms you’ve come to love and adore: ManoGenic, ManoPlayful, ManoSmile, ManoSeXy & of course ManoBeach! ^^