Damn guys, I’m sorry for such a giant backlog of music – school’s been winding down, applications are due all over the place, it’s been a crazy semester. But slowly, and most surely, I will be getting these out to you as fast as I can. Especially because it’s my mission to combat all this damn Christmas music with awesome J-Pop and K-Pop.
And to start it off, why not take a look at a song about demons! Yes, that’s right, demons. Let’s take a look at Saraba, Itoshiki Kanashimi-tachi yo (or Farwell, My Dear Sorrows) by Momoiro Clover Z.
Here’s the video with English subs:
The song itself is the theme song for a new drama called Akumu-chan, which I haven’t had a chance to catch but it looks like Lewis Carol were actually writing Alice in Wonderland while on drugs, and not just raging against calculus like he really was. In fact, Momoiro Clover Z has done a lot of themes lately – Moretsu Space Pirates, the ending to Pokemon Best Wishes, and in 2013, the theme song to the revamped Sailor Moon. But this show is definitely unlike any other. Needless to say, this song holds that same very strange, disjointed feeling of darkness, oddity, and total mania. And somehow, that helped them debut in the number one spot on the Billboard Japan top 100. I am not even kidding you right now.
This video is…oh my God this video. No matter how many times I watch it, I’m still so, so confused. But yet I keep watching it. Which is basically a testament to how good the music is. But let’s talk about the video first this time around before we get too in-depth with it.
The premise, so far as I can follow it, is that there is a little girl who plants five trees which turn evil and produce devils. These devils try to convert her by saying terrible things. Then the angels come and make everything better and save the trees. Yeah, it makes no freaking sense whatsoever. But it is a music video, and thus we can forgive it just a little bit.
What I like a lot about the video is the aesthetic – it reminds me of Puella Magi Madoka Magica with the curtain, the costuming, the bizarre non-sensical nature. The rising curtains, the garden, the dressy costuming. I really think that the two costumes – the angel and devil ones – work really well and give them a classy look without being overally fru-fru and fancy. If there was one thing I was going to complain about, it would be those wigs. Man, are they ugly. I’ve gotten used to them in a 3 trillion times I’ve watched the video, but it was really jarring the first time through. I’m not sure they chose that particular design, whether it’s used in the show, or they thought it would make them look bizarre and off-putting, but they are so distracting.
The dance ranges from looking really fantastic to being kind of weird. The energy in the chorus and bridge are really infectious, and the movements are precise and well executed. There’s not a major difficulty on this dance, which only means that they have it more in sync and perfect than ever. However, there are parts, like the light-show dance towards the end which looks a little awkward and jumbled – like they weren’t entirely sure what to put in that one part so they used to lights to try and hide it a little. Still, overall, the dance is a great fit for the song and a lot of fun to watch.
The lyrics are a little confusing, though I don’t know if they are written to be like that, or the subs don’t capture the exact meaning of the lyrics. Again, the theme of the video is weird, so it’s not a stretch to think the lyrics are the same way. However, to take them at face value, they are pretty dark and messed up, which compared to the adorable cuteness of their other songs is a nice change of pace.
The song itself is gorgeous. Momoiro Clover Z is well-known for being the absolute sweetest of the sweet, but they really hit it out of the park with this darker, grittier sound. The vocals are all spot on, blending well in the chorus, but standing out in the verses nicely. There’s a lot of dark enthusiasm in this song and it really sell it. The melody is a mix of rock and classical, blending in with cartoony pop for a dynamic melody that slips in from dastardly, to creepy, to angelic. While I could take or leave the video, I am IN LOVE with this song. I have had this thing on reply for the last three weeks. It’s energetic without being overly saccharine, great for mornings when you’re too tired to move, or running away from crazy people. Personally, I cannot get enough of this song, but I can see how mileage may vary for other people.
Overall, Saraba, Itoshiki Kanashimi-tachi yo deserves to be Momoiro Clover Z’s big number one hit because it is genuinely great song, and I hope to see more like it. Personally, I’m only interested in watching the show because of this great song…well and Sailor Mars from Pretty Guardian Sailor Moon is starring in it. But this is the top reason. One day their tracks will be up in iTunes, ONE DAY! If you’re even half curious, check it out. You won’t regret it.
– Fantastic Vocals.
– Great song.
– Dance is pretty good overall.
– Strange Concept.
– Bizarre Costume.
– Confusing Video Plot.