Credits

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.

Sunday, April 10, 2016

AAA -- Koi Oto to Amazora (恋音と雨空)


Oooooh, it's pronounced as Triple A not A-A-A. Triple A definitely has a better ring to it.


When I did my article on my views of the 66th Kohaku, I mentioned that there were a few non-enka acts that managed to gain my approval, otherwise known as not completely ignore/zone out during their performances. Some of those included were Gen Hoshino, EXILE, and AAA. At that time, while I was familiar with the first two, I couldn't say the same for the latter who appeared on the Red team as a group with seven members (two ladies and five gentlemen), so it was nice that they sang something that was easy on my ears. They seemed like an aidoru group at first glance, but somehow they didn't give off that aidoru feel and look. I thought they looked pretty slick in their red suits (if I'm not wrong).

AAA's song of choice that night was "Koi Oto to Amazora", and though I couldn't really recall how it went after the entire year-end sh-bang I managed to keep in mind that I should revisit it sometime. That "sometime" happened to be just a few days ago when I got reminded of it via a karaoke video of it on YouTube's suggestion corner.

Wow, hipster fashion!

I'd describe "Koi Oto to Amazora" as one smooth tune to listen to, from the delivery of all the members to the melody. What I like best about the music is this flute-like sound effect that's probably from the synths as it gives an element of fun, plus I can imagine rain falling from a somewhat cloudy and grey sky when hearing it. A cool, modern edge is also added by that nice beat and a rapping portion about midway through. Yosuke Okamura (岡村洋佑) was responsible for the lyrics and music, and Mitsuhiro Hidaka (日高光啓) did the rap lyrics - he's the one who does the rapping too. It's just the kind of song that'll be great accompanied by members' dance moves... But I do find one part of their choreography where they look like they're holding up a serving tray to be rather odd, for want of a better word. That aside, I'm glad I managed to keep "Koi Oto to Amazora" in mind after that Kohaku appearance as I don't think I would have found this gem otherwise.

"Koi Oto to Amazora" was AAA's 38th single released on 4th September 2013. Not surprising that it ranked high on the charts, peaking at 3rd place on the Oricon weeklies, and it became a certified Platinum record, and allowed the group to bag the "Outstanding Work Award" at the 55th Japan Record Awards. So besides 2015's edition of the Kohaku, AAA had performed "Koi Oto to Amazora" during their 4th appearance out of 6 in 2013.

amazon.co.jp

To round off the article, here's a little background on this band. Formed in 2005, AAA, or Attack All Around - probably because the members were trained to tackle all sorts of stuff in the world of entertainment, like singing, acting, and dancing - was supposed to only have six people which included Takahiro "Nissy"  Nishijima (西島隆弘), Misako Uno (宇野実彩子), Naoya Urata (浦田直也) as the leader, the aforementioned Hidaka, Shinjiro Atae (與真司郎), and Shuta Sueyoshi (末吉秀太). But it was later decided by their company, Avex, that Yukari Goto (後藤友香里) and Chiaki Ito (伊藤千晃) should be added. AAA then debuted on 14th September that year with "Blood on Fire", which was the theme song to the "Initial D" the live action movie. Two years later, Goto decided to leave the group and from then on the group remained as what you see now.

8 comments:

  1. What a coincident! YouTube recommended this exact same song to me the other day. Also, Nishijima starred in the just finished Fuji TV drama "Itsuka kono koi wo omoidashite kitto naiteshimau". I didn't know he can sing.

    As you mentioned, it's an easy song. I like the melody a lot.

    The concept of a mixed boy/girl band is intriguing. All boys or all girls band will always be labelled as an idol group. A mixed band sounds more like musicians getting together, e.g. Goose House and Ikimonogakari. In this case though, I treat AAA more like an idol group.

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    1. Hello Larry.

      That show that Nishijima was in, "Itsuka kono koi wo Omoidasite kitto naiteshimau" (man that's a mouthful!), I didn't recognize it immediately but when I searched it it turns out to be a drama on one of the local Japanese channels here in Singapore, under the title "Love That Makes You Cry". I didn't realise that Nishijima was in it though. Gotta go check it out now that I know.

      Yeah, I don't see mixed bands with a similar shtick as AAA - not sure who Goose House is, but Ikimonogakari is a proper band with members playing instruments rather than dancing. And though they look like an idol group, somehow I find that AAA gives off a different vibe, or at least they do in this particular song.

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    2. This is Goose House's official web site:
      http://goosehouse.jp/

      This is their YouTube channel:
      https://www.youtube.com/user/playyouhousejp

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  2. Hi Larry and Noelle.

    I actually never saw AAA as an aidoru group; I think in terms of overall musicality and presentation as being somewhat closer to song-and-dance units such as EXILE. But Larry, you are quite correct in pointing out that AAA is quite intriguing in that it is a boy/girl group that involves both genders in the singing and dancing. At this point, I don't know of any other similar group in J-Pop, although I have to admit that I don't have as much of a pulse on the current big acts.

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    1. Have you heard of Goose House? It started as a project at Sony Music. The idea was to form a group consisting of singer-song-writers, let them perform on YouTube to gain popularity on the Internet, and then foray into CD and live performance.

      This is their official web site:
      http://goosehouse.jp/

      This is their YouTube channel:
      https://www.youtube.com/user/playyouhousejp

      I think they're quite good, although they do a lot of covers. They're intriguing not only because they're a boys/girls mixed group, but also that they can all play instruments (except the main vocalist Kei).

      Maybe I should write something about them on your blog...some day

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    2. Hi, Larry.

      No I never heard of Goose House until you mentioned them. I just went to their site and heard their covers and they're very accomplished. Considering some of the woes Sony has been enduring over the past several years, the company should be touting their project a whole lot more.

      Please feel free to write about them anytime! :)

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    3. Hi J-Canuck and Larry.

      The fellas from Goose House look pretty spiffy and almost give that same feel as AAA, but they seem much more serious and classier. Would like to see an article on them, Larry!

      Y'know J-Canuck, now that you mention it, AAA is kinda similar to EXILE. But in terms of singing live, I think EXILE takes the lead here.

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    4. Yeah, I think EXILE probably has the upper hand certainly in terms of overall performance level on the stage.

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