Best of 2011: J-Pop Moment

February 2, 2012

Seeing as I took this week off of work, I figured I should probably get going on those best of 2011 posts. J-Pop Moment was supposed to be an irregular feature, but it looks like I only got around to posting one in 2011. Since that’s just not cool I decided I should put together a J-Pop wrap up for the year.

Towa Tei with Yukihiro Takahashi & Kiko Mizuhara- “The Burning Plain”

As an avid DVD collector, Towa Tei had me at “you just set up the DVD I’ve waited to see.” And then model Kiko Mizuhara chimes in with the chorus and it’s LOVE. I haven’t seen The Burning Plain (I hear Charlize Theron is naked in it) but I’ll pick it up when I see it in the bargain bins. (CD Japan/Play-Asia)

Kyary Pamyu Pamyu- “PONPONPON”

With a major label debut produced by Yasataka Nakata, Kyary Pamyu Pamyu was bound to be talked about. But it was this wtf video that gave Kyary worldwide attention. Kyary’s bizarre fashion sense and the colorful imagery of “PONPONPON” provides enough material for countless articles but I’ll leave that to someone else. (CD Japan)

Perfume- “Laser Beam”

Speaking of Yasutaka Nakata, Perfume had another chart-topping year of singles culminating in their new album JPN in November. “Laser Beam” was my favorite of those singles and the PV is pretty neat too. It would’ve been nice to see a full version (they blamed it on the Tohoku earthquake, but a full version is apparently on the JPN bonus DVD). (CD Japan/Play-Asia)

capsule- “World of Fantasy”

Did I really go a year without talking about capsule? Kyary and Perfume kind of took the steam out of the release of Nakata’s own project. It didn’t help that the album was postponed two months from its March release date and renamed (who titles an album Killer Wave anyway?). “World of Fantasy” is a good Toshiko centered track and reminds me of those old 3D arcade rides. (CD Japan/Play-Asia)

DadaD- “Go Around”

Charming pop from Kate and Shige, a duo known as DadaD. Sometimes I just like to watch a cute jumpsuit girl sway her hips. Kate slaps Shige version. (CD Japan/Play-Asia)

World Order- “2012”

Who would have though Genki Sudo’s J-Pop career would be going strong in 2012? World Order takes their working man’s dance down to the streets of Mexico, where the Mayans made the calender that says we’re all going to die at the end of the year! (Download)

Emi Meyer- “Happy Song”

You have a lot to live up to with a song title like that. But Emi Meyer did in fact make me happy deep down inside with this song. It even made me crack a smile, which is nigh near impossible these days. Bravo! (CD Baby/CD Japan)

aoki laska- “you dumped me like a trash”

Normally I’m not into pop songs that feel the need to use profanity, but the way this girl says “shit” is so cute. And sad for her I guess. (CD Japan)

Sayaka Kushibiki- “AOR”

As I’ve mentioned before, I prefer the adorable Engrish version on her split EP with Toru Hidaka and sons, but that catchy beat is still here. I love you too! (CD Japan)

BiS- “My Ixxx”

For a pop group, BiS makes some pretty strange videos. In “My Ixxx,” Bis runs around the forest naked like pagan girls searching for a goat to sacrifice. Probably NSFW but they do blur out the good bits with some kind of plasticy material that makes them look like aliens. (CD Japan)

OBRIGARRD- “The Ground Cumbia”

Did you think I’d make a new column for hip hop? Hell no! Maybe it’s just because I grew up around accordions but this beat is sick. (Jet Set Records)

Yasuyuki Okamura- “Loop”

J-Pop star Yasuyuki Okamura made a comeback in 2011 after years of inactivity. “Loop” shows him trying to do something new with a rap song with plenty of coughs and nonsense lyrics. It’s good! (Download)

What pop songs ruled your 2011? Should I bother talking about J-Pop again?

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