Japanese Christmas playlist

Now we are in December I thought to myself: I want to do a post about Japanese Christmas songs! I’m not sure I know that many, and most of them I know are from idol groups, but well here is my list~

Many probably don’t know about this Arashi song (I didn’t at least), but as I searched to see if Arashi had a Christmas song hidden in their discography, I found this! Ano Hi no Merry Christmas (あの日のメリークリスマス) is a light, typical Arashi song. Nevertheless, it’s a Christmas song and it has sort of grown on me, after having listened to it a couple of times. I would have liked some solo lines, but apart from that it’s a nice jingle for Christmas~

This is a song I know well, having listened to it many times. As always Buono! produces some great pop-rock tunes and this is no exception. I love Winter Story‘s catchy and groovy sound, as well as the brilliant chorus. A Buono! classic of mine and a great song to make me in mood for Christmas!

I can’t forget to include Momoiro Clover Z’s crazy and energetic Christmas song Santa-san! From the first time I listened to this song, I was hooked. It’s such a great, funny song with a lot of small gimmicks. Here I’m thinking of things like Reni’s ii toko (“good qualities”) dance for Santa Claus (or whatever it is) and a mentioning about Australian Christmas being in midsummer, which results in a throwback to their summer song Coco☆Natsu (ココ☆ナツ)(haha), so crazy!

This year Momoiro Clover Z’s “little brother” group DISH// (under Stardust) has released a Christmas single, nearly as crazy as Santa-san. Itsuka wa Merry Christmas (いつかはメリークリスマス)is a funny rock/pop song with fresh voices from the group’s young members (15-18 years old). Like Momoiro Clover Z they sure like to make funny gags during their songs, which I really like about this group. I also like the message of this song, which is wishing for a girlfriend from Santa Claus in order not to be lonely on Christmas eve (lol). DISH’s members always seem in desperate need of one, even though they are all quite handsome! That I find very ironic. Then again it’s just a song, and an entertaining one at that.

This Christmas song by actress Maeda Aki is from her album Winter Tales, and is the only song of that album which isn’t a cover of previous Christmas hits, I believe. I think it’s a nice “gentle” song (like the title Fuyu Fuwari ふゆふわり, meaning “gently winter”) which a  lot of bell chimes, beautiful violin and Aki’s sweet voice to top it all. I like this actress a lot, as well as this Christmas song.

I love this Christmas love ballad by C-ute! I like Aitai Lonely Christmas (会いたいロンリークリスマス)so much I even listen to it when it isn’t Christmas (haha). It’s such a catchy song and the chorus is easy to remember too~ I wish C-ute could make songs like this again. It has a strong setsunai (“wistful/yearning”) feeling to it right? I kind of like that type of songs. I guess it’s because we all yearn for that special someone during the holidays (sigh).

I know this isn’t a song sung by a Japanese person, but Canadian René Simard released many Japanese songs as a child, and I like his song Christmas Tree (クリスマス・トォリー)a lot, so thought I would include it in my list. René has a nice heartfelt voice and delivers yet a beautiful song to enjoy during Christmas. He has released a lot of other Christmas songs in French as well as some in English I’m sure. So if you like this song, you should check his other songs out (even though they are old)~

This is such a happy song from Hey! Say! JUMP about having fun in the snow with one’s sweetheart (or that’s what I gather at least). I’m not sure it’s a Christmas song, but the theme “snow” is enough for me to make it so (haha). I love the intro line: masaka, yuki da! (“no way, it’s snowing!”). That line always make me in a good mood. Not that I’m too fond of snow, but I guess we all love the magic of the first snow of Christmas right?

I had to include Nino’s Winter Song as well. Nino is my favorite member from Arashi and I just love this beautiful Christmas ballad from him. I only have the version recorded from his radio show Bay Storm, and I’m not even sure if it’s been released anywhere else. He should totally release this on an album though! My favorite part of this sweet song is when he ends the song with the line: Merry Christmas to you, Merry Christmas to you~

Fairies has also released a Christmas song! Sweet Jewel has a very uplifting feeling to it and always make me in the mood to be productive (haha). Fairies always knows how to make very girly, yet stylish songs. That’s what I love about them. In addition, the PV for this song is so glittering and pretty, you should check it out if you haven’t!

This is the theme song from Morimoto Shintaro’s movie Snow Prince and is such a beautiful Christmas song! I love the piano play in the background, as well as the Snow Prince choir’s young adorable voices. I totally wish they could have been a permanent group, but unfortunately they only released this single. And I wish Johnny’s would do other songs like this too. It’s so precious!

I know this isn’t an official Christmas song maybe, but I always found it very Christmas-like for some reason! Apart from that, I see the light ~Bokutachi no Stage~ is one of my favorite Sexy Zone songs. It was included on their first single and also features the very young fresh voices of Marius and Sou (I totally miss their voices now! *cries*). I would have included their more official Christmas/summer song Sexy Summer ni Yuki ga Furu (Sexy Summer に雪が降る)as well, but Soundcloud wouldn’t let me upload it (buuhuu).

So these were my suggestions for Japanese Christmas songs (which aren’t covers of English ones). I hope you enjoyed and if you know some other good J-Pop Christmas songs, don’t hesitate to mention them in the comment section below~
And let’s hope Soundcloud doesn’t delete my uploads.

『cha cha SING』 Summer song of 2012!

It’s been awhile since Berryz came out with a really catchy song, but this time is certainly different! Their new single is making me go wild, and I must say it’s one of my favourite summer jams this year. It may be a cover of a Thai singer, but so was Jingiskan and that was a big hit. It seems like Berryz can pull of nice covers, almost better than the originals (my biased opinion yes).

Regarding the PV, I think it’s very bright and colorful and fits the song perfectly. Pictures suggested a flash-mob scene would be included in the PV, but unfortunately that was probably only promotion for the single… To bad really. As for the outfits I like how they all look like Thai (or maybe even Indian) princesses, as well as their individual hairstyles look amazing. Especially Risako’s and Miyabi’s hairstyle caught my attention (btw, didn’t Miyabi cut her hair? oOo).

I’m looking forward to watching Momo’s solo PV now! It’s probably going to be pink and flawless ~

Hopefully it will be up on Berryz’ channel soon.

Berryz Koubou – Ai no Album ⑧

Received my copy of Berryz new album yesterday and two days after the release date – yay! I like the theme for this album’s cover, even though the girls hanging from bed sheds just seems so hilarious xD lol. The theme is however a bit ambiguous to me; is it a princess, fairy tale, girls’ choir or Kiki’s Delivery Service theme they are trying to sport here? (Miya totally looks like Kiki, haha) ^^; The DVD extras were pretty neat. A concert performance of their new single Be Genki <Naseba naru!> together with solo shots versions of each member and a Jacket Making of :D For once worth buying the DVD version (*rolls eyes*)
But now to the songs! ^o^

01.Mythology ~Ai no Album~ (Mythology ~Love Album~)
I think the intro song is alright, just a bit repetitive maybe. It has a nice funky beat and I the feel of the song is actually quite cool. After some more listens I will probably love it ;)

02.Yononaka Barairo (Rose-colored Society)
This song reminds me so much of 80s Japanese punk rock band The Blue Hearts (especially Miya’s deep tones in the beginning of the song!) :O It also reminds me of their earlier single Maji Bomber – this song is just so much better imo :D The acoustic guitar parts are awesome and the girls sing this song really well too. Love this song~

03.Shy boy
This is actually a really nice song, so am just puzzled why Tsunku chose to auto-tune the whole thing o_o The lyrics and melody are so cool and mature and then the auto-tune just kinds of ruin it a bit :( But it doesn’t change that this song is very catchy and a nice new mature sound for Berryz as well ^o^ (Have a feeling this song would be nice as a live performance :p)

04.Because happiness
Yay~ eurobeat song! I love when Tsunku does these kind of songs :D This song is so Berryz and lovely ^O^ It makes the listener happy and as for me, it makes me want to dance actually xD The title is just typical janglish though :P

05.Renai Moyou (Love Pattern) / Tokunaga Chinami, Sudou Maasa, Kumai Yurina, Sugaya Risako
Without competition the best song on the album. This song is a ballad and a sad love song and I’m just in love with the background music in this *o* It’s really nice!! I can’t even describe it, makes me think of Masayume by Aa! maybe. Kind of makes me want to cry of happiness ;o; The girls sang this so well, especially Yurina’s high note – wow! Just the best song, no doubt about it ;D

06.Ai no Dangan (Love Bullet)
Ai no Dangan. This song is generally a catchy and awesome girl-power song. And then it’s awesome, enough said ;)

07.Amazuppai Haru ni Sakura Saku (On a Bittersweet Spring, The Sakura Blooms) / Berryz工房×℃-ute
Sorry I just can’t take this song >_< Watched the PV once and haven’t watched it since. I wish their new single could have taken this song’s place :( Sorry I just think this song is lifeless and boring T-T

08.Atarashii Hibi (New Everyday) / Shimizu Saki, Tsugunaga Momoko, Natsuyaki Miyabi
Yay another cool ballad song! ^o^ These members work so well together – their harmonies are like perfect ♥ And Saki having so many solo lines in one song, just automatically makes this song great. Then adding Momo and Miya (some of the best singers in Berryz) takes this song to a whole new level of H!P-awesomeness xD Wee~

09.Aa, Yo ga Akeru (Ah, Dawn Breaks)
Definitely my favorite release from Berryz last year. This song is just incredibly catchy ^^; Love the vocals, the beat, the melody and the tones of this song. I’m glad this song was included on the album and don’t mind it taking up a new song’s place at all. This song just rocks! :D

10.Seishun Gekijou (Youth Theater) / Berryz工房 Ver.

As a tradition, Berryz once again ends their album with a “chorus and piano” ballad song (but this time Tsunku joined the choir though ;P) A nice song, but also quite typical. Doesn’t really leave me with any kind of impact, if you know what I mean :/But I guess it’s an overall nice song :)

This album felt quite short, as there only were 10 songs on it, but it still contained some pretty awesome songs! I actually loved them all apart from Amazuppai Haru and Seishun Gekijou :) Otherwise I think Tsunku once again did a pretty good job on Berryz ^_~ I’m not sure if I think this album is better than their previous ones (whom I enjoyed just as much) but it’s definitely not below them in standard!! So generally a strong album – well done Berryz ♥