I would like to give credit where credit is due. Videos are from YouTube and other sources such as NicoNico while Oricon rankings and other information are translated from the Japanese Wikipedia unless noted.

Monday, September 1, 2014

Team Syachihoko -- Iikurashi (いいくらし)

As Momoiro Clover Z’s (ももいろクローバーZ) youngest sister group, Team Syachihoko (チームしゃちほこ) delivers what must aidoru fans learned to expect from a group promoted by Stardust Promotion Agency’s 3B Junior section: quirky and over the top songs with dubious vocals.

That’s the case with “Iikurashi”, an interesting attempt that mixes aidoru pop with late 80s/early 90s style of house music (something in the lines of Madonna’s hit single “Vogue”, Black Box’s classic “Ride On Time”, or, staying in J-Pop’s domains, Perfume’s “GLITTER”). The result is an edgy song that still sounds cute. Let’s say that while the vocal lines during the verses are cute and strangely hypnotic (Team Syachihoko is good in this department, as we can see in "Ai no Chikyuusai" [愛の地球祭], their previous single, which was released in late 2013), the background arrangement just goes along between steady beats and dynamic synths.

Based on the pop music standards, “Iikurashi” is a fairly long song with its six and a half minutes, something that made me remember of the extended and 12’’ singles that were around mostly during the mid-to-late 70s, 80s and early 90s. In “Iikurashi’s” case, it’s never a boring or very linear song, thanks to a cute rap interlude and some instrumental buildups. The vocals can be considered a weak point, but an aidoru listener is more than used to rough and endless out of tone notes.

To finish, I found quite educational to post this amazing video of SynthMania, an YouTube channel that I like very much. In this video, he shows how a typical Italo house song of the early 90s was created. Enjoy!

“Iikurashi” was released in May 2014 and reached #2 on the Oricon charts, selling 34,830 copies in its first week. Lyrics were written by Mochiishiriri (もちいしりり), while music and arrangement were done by Tetsuto Yoshida (吉田哲人).


  1. Hi Marcos,

    I took a bite and was pleasantly surprised. You're right, the mix of house music with aidoru pop in "Iikurashi” was a nice touch. Reminds me of some J-Pop efforts in the early 2000's (minus the aidoru part), but those weren't as interesting as this. And good for the creator team for keeping the song fun for that long. The colorful video helped, too.

    Anyways, I enjoyed this.

    1. Hi, nikala.

      To be honest with you, I remember not expecting too much from this group when I decided to take a look, but at least three songs from them really made a positive impression. "Iikurashi" was my favorite, but "Ai no Chikyuusai" is not very far behind. Like J-Canuck said below, 2014's been a great year for aidoru music, and I'm thrilled with it. In Team Syachihoko's case, they're are from the same agency of Momoiro Clover Z, and I think that offers a good explanation for the fact that they are able to challenge a couple of boundaries.

      The video, like you said, is a highlight. The subway scene is probably my favorite.

  2. Hello Marcos.

    It's been quite the year for aidoru...just going out in all sorts of directions. Especia and BABYMETAL are just a couple of examples, and then I saw the video for Syachihoko. It reminded me of the famous catchphrase "Gonna make you sweat" from C&C MUSIC FACTORY!

    I have to go along with nikala with the video. It doesn't really lag for a second...amazing for an aidoru song that lasts over 7 minutes! And it was nice to see comedienne エド・はるみ pop up again.

    Always appreciate the education in dance music so it was great to see that SynthMania video and great to hear a bit of nostalgia.

    Fun hooky song!

    1. Hi, J-Canuck.

      I'm always happy to know you have fun with some new aidoru songs.

      Like you said, 2014's been quite the year for aidoru. The whole aidoru cicle that started back in 2009~2010 with the climbing of AKB48 to the top of the Oricon charts, while also selling millions of each single released, is shaping in some interesting ways. I'm just curious to know when and how this "aidoru bubble" will burst. Until it don't happen, let's enjoy what the cicle can offer.

      As for the video, I like it very much. It's full of nonsense scenes, like the bed and the subway. I just hope Team Syachihoko keeps releasing good songs like "Iikurashi".


Feel free to provide any comments (pro or con). Just be civil about it.