Random Curiosity

CODE GEASS: Boukoku no Akito – PV

The spin-off to CODE GEASS, “Akito the Exiled” (literally, “Akito of the Ruined Country”), is finally gaining some steam on the production side of things with a 90-second promo video — three and a half years after the second season finished airing. Along with it came the starring cast announcment: Irino Miyu as Hyuuga Akito and Sakamoto Maaya as Reira Markale (official English spelling pending).

The side story takes place in 2017, around the time Lelouch took on the alter-ego “Zero” and built up his “Black Knights” rebellion army (i.e. season one). The setting is Europe, where the Euro Universe (E.U.) allied nations are being invaded by the overwhelming force of the Britannia Empire. On the verge of defeat, the E.U. army forms a special division known as “W-0″, which a young pilot named Hyuuga Akito is a member of. Coming to the E.U.’s aid is a former Britannia aristocrat named Reira Markale, who commands the “Wyvern” Knightmare corps comprised of Japanese teenagers. They recklessly plunge into a battlefied where the survival rate is extremely low to fight for their freedom and have a country they can return to that feels like “home”. Thus begins their fight against the adult world.

The premise has been more or less laid out (translated above), but it’s still relatively unclear on whether Boukoku no Akito will be a full TV series, an OVA, or a film. What we do know is that it will be screened in theaters this summer and that it will be directed by Akane Kazuki (Tenkuu no Escaflowne, Noein: Mou Hitori no Kimi e) and once again feature original character designs by CLAMP. Judging from the screening date, we’ll likely see this long-awaited spin-off in either summer or fall of this year.

Update: A movie project for the original “Hangyaku no Lelouch” story has also been announced.

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January 12, 2012 at 1:37 pm Comments (138)

Aoi Eir – MEMORIA PV (Fate/Zero ED)

It feels like it’s been forever since I last posted about a music video, but the ending theme for the upcoming Fate/Zero anime caught my attention in all the promo videos and made me want to share the clip that recently showed up on new female artist Aoi Eir’s website. (For whatever reason, they don’t want to reveal her face just yet.)

I found myself rewatching the Fate/Zero character clips just to hear parts of the chorus, so it’s nice to finally hear more of the song. The full version’s floating around the Internet airwaves ahead of its October 19th release date too, having been played over the radio. I’ve included it below for your listening pleasure (and to get it stuck in your head like it is mine). Judging from the season poll, Fate/Zero is one of the most anticipated new shows this fall, so it looks like I’m not the only one who’s going to be hearing a lot of this song.

* Streaming video after the jump.
* Updated with full version of PV.

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September 22, 2011 at 2:32 pm Comments (32)

Music Japan – Shinseiki Anisong Special 4

Last year, some of you may recall that I posted live performances by May’n and Nakagawa Shoko from NHK’s Music Japan program. Those were actually a part of the third “New Century Anime Song Special”, and just over a week ago on January 16th, the fourth half-hour special was aired. The filming of the live event at NHK Hall actually took place back on November 22nd and featured more songs than were televised; however, of the ones shown, there was a special collaboration between Mizuki Nana and May’n that I caught wind of just a couple of weeks ago. All it took was mention of a rare duet of Macross Frontier’s “Diamond Crevasse” ending theme to get me eagerly anticipating this special, which also featured a bunch of good anime songs from both past and present. This includes the last live performance by Angel Beats’ Girls Dead Monster, where both marina (Iwasawa) and LiSA (Yui) took to the stage together. If you’re like me and enjoy seeing anime songs that you’ve heard from your favorite series performed live, then be sure to check out the videos after the break.

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January 24, 2011 at 10:40 pm Comments (62)

Kuriyama Chiaki – Cold Finger Girl PV (LEVEL E OP)

LEVEL E may have just premiered a couple of days ago, but the opening theme by Battle Royale/Kill Bill: Vol. 1 actress/model/singer Kuriyama Chiaki, “Cold Finger Girl”, already has a music video airing on television ahead of the single’s January 26th release date. Admittedly, I’m still not that accustomed to seeing Chiaki sing, as the first and only other song of hers I’ve heard is “Ryuusei no Namida” from the first episode of Gundam Unicorn. Much like the music video for that song (included at the bottom of the Unicorn post), this one starts off similarly with her “making love to the camera” before she goes off on some sort of a heist. It’s not exactly the most exciting thing, but as far as Japanese music videos go, it’s a lot better than some other ones I’ve seen. As for the song itself, I’m still pretty indifferent about it one way or another, except for how it showed a different style of music Chiaki can sing. It does seem to fit the craziness that goes on in the sci-fi comedy it’s featured in though. Enjoy.

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January 12, 2011 at 2:25 pm Comments (11)

Kurosaki Maon – Magic∞world PV (To Aru Majutsu no Index II ED)

In what could probably be summed up with the phrase, “There’s no way my anime song singer is this cute”, Kurosaki Maon manages to appease a wide variety of fans with the PV for her first single, “Magic world”. In addition to featuring an overly geeky glasses look with her rooftop dance performance, Maon sneaks in brief cosplays of Index and Uiharu Kazari from To Aru Majutsu no Index, Kousaka Kirino from Oreimo, Shana from Shakugan no Shana, and Miyamoto Rei from HIGHSCHOOL OF THE DEAD. Now how’s that for a PV for an anime song?

Of those, the last one is especially meaningful, considering she made her singing debut with her “H.O.T.D.” album that is comprised of all twelve ending themes for that fan-service/horror series. Even after getting signed by Geneon Universal, Maon is still a member of the Dear Stage live bar in Akihabara. As you can probably imagine, this means she’s also a fan of anime herself, with her favorite works including Uragiri wa Boku no Namae wo Shitteiru, SEKIREI, Fushigi Yuugi, Strawberry Panic, Double Cast, Air, Kanon, Negima, Ayashi no Ceres, and Rozen Maiden. Quite a diverse taste if I do say so myself, which is always cool to see in an anime fan regardless of whether or not their songs get featured in the shows themselves.

… More after the jump, including the “making of” video.

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December 9, 2010 at 6:01 pm Comments (15)

Hikasa Youko – LOVE Machine PV (Seikimatsu Occult Gakuin)

Remember the third Anime no Chikara project last season that turned out to be a little bit of a surprise hit? Well, the first two volumes of DVD/BD releases have been available for some time now, and included with the first one is an anime PV of Hikasa Youko’s cover of Morning Musume’s 1999 hit song “LOVE Machine”. For those with a 3DTV, the Blu-ray release also included a 3D version of this little bonus, which is a part of the character cover songs included in each volume. The theme for the character songs in this series is covers of popular songs from the 1990s simply because the series takes place in 1999. Unfortunately, the later ones don’t feature PVs of the other characters’ songs, but the second volume does include the first of four mini side stories. The first one is titled “Welcome Tsucchii” and is more or less an animated short akin to what you’d expect from a picture drama, and shows Maya with Ami when they were kids and found a legendary snake known as a Tsuchinoko and made it their pet. It’s cute in the sense that we get to see more of Maya’s occult fascination when she was a kid, but doesn’t really add anything to the overall story. I actually prefer the video above with the characters all busting a move near the end of it and Fumiaki freaking out about Junichirou’s corpse’s head falling off. See the full post for some caps of the side story.

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November 18, 2010 at 1:25 am Comments (22)

Kawada Mami – No buts! PV (To Aru Majutsu no Index II OP)

Show No buts! Lyrics ▼

Kawada Mami, member of I’ve Sound, is an artist who probably needs no introduction among anime fan circles, having produced singles for several highly popular and prolific series such as Shakugan no Shana, Hayate no Gotoku!, and of course, Toaru Majutsu no Index. Looking at that list, it seems like in the roughly five years since the release of her first single, SEED, she’s become J.C.Staff’s go-to-girl for songs for their higher budgeted and advertised, multi-seasonal shows. Being a rather big Mami fan myself, enjoying every song she’s put out for Shana and Index, I immediately went to listen to the single of No buts!, released last week (11/3) the first chance I got.

… More after the jump.

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November 12, 2010 at 5:50 pm Comments (26)

sphere – MOON SIGNAL PV (Otome Youkai Zakuro OP)

I may not be covering the Otomoe Youkai Zakuro, but that doesn’t mean I haven’t been watching the military/youkai mash-up series whenever I can make time for it. I mentioned back in the Fall 2010 Preview that the series came off a bit generic to me despite its all-star cast (both male and female); however, its shoujo-esque nature has made it a lot more entertaining to watch than I originally thought. An initial impression that hasn’t changed since then is the one I had about the opening theme, “MOON SIGNAL”, performed by seiyuu group sphere. The short clip of it featured in one of the fifteen second commercial message at the time had me looking forward to hearing more of their sixth single, which much like their previous ones, is very pop-like and well-suited for anime themes. It’s kind of hard to believe that the group was only formed back in April 2009 and has already had four of those six singles featured as opening themes (of which I’ve posted about two of the previous three), but it’s a welcome trend in my books since I tend to like their songs.

..More after the jump.

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October 26, 2010 at 9:00 pm Comments (25)

Nakagawa Shoko – Flying Humanoid PV (Seikimatsu Occult Gakuin OP)

Nakagawa Shoko’s latest single “Flying Humanoid” was released back on August 18th, whereas the music video for it you see above was aired on TV prior to that. The PV itself is a surprisingly pretty good one as far as Japanese music videos go, and I particularly like the use of CG in addition to Shoko and her band changing into samurai outfits near the end. Is it relevant? Not really, but it’s good for variety sake given how animated she is singing this song. The clocks are a nice touch too, since they’re reminiscent of Occult Gakuin’s opening sequence. As for the song itself, it’s grown on me a fair bit in the past two months while watching the series. Fullmetal Alchemist’s fifth ending theme “RAY OF LIGHT” was a nice slow song, but Shoko’s more upbeat music is always a good listen too. While the TV size version of Flying Humanoid is a good cut that got me into song, I must say I really like the full version a lot more. The main reason being, the TV size kind of ends abruptly and always leaves me wanting to hear more. In her live performance a couple of weeks ago on Music Japan (not on the same one as May’n), Shoko performed this shorter version. It featured a longer instrumental outro, but was otherwise a prime example of me hinging on hearing the next verse of the song. See below.

* Music Japan live performance video after the jump.

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September 4, 2010 at 8:12 pm Comments (23)

May’n – Ready Go! PV (Ookami-san to Shichinin no Nakama-tachi OP)

This post has been sitting in my drafts for some time now, so I figured it’s about time to get it out. Not to mention, the PV for May’n’s latest single has been out for almost two months now on Victor Entertainment’s flying DOG YouTube channel, prior to the actual premiere of Ookami-san. In addition, the single itself came out on July 28th, so everyone who’s wanted to hear the full version of “Ready Go” probably has by now. What hasn’t been so readily available though is her live performance of the song on Music Japan’s anime song special back on August 1st. I say live performance, but in reality this looks like a prerecorded lip-synced one where May’n gets part of the lyrics and dance messed up at the 2:24 mark and recovers with the help of a quick camera change. Regardless, I love watching live performances of songs prerecorded or otherwise, so this Music Japan special was pretty cool to see. There were several other artists performing as well, some of which I may post performances of later on. For now, enjoy the latest from May’n if you haven’t seen it already. The PV in particular looks like it could be used for an iPod advertisement.

* Music Japan live performance video after the jump.

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August 26, 2010 at 2:48 pm Comments (28)

sphere – Now loading…SKY!! PV (Asobi ni Iku yo! OP)

It seems like all I’ve been talking about in the past while is sphere and its members, so I’ll refer you to the Asobi ni Iku yo OP and Takagaki Ayahi PV posts for a quick rundown on what these four lovely ladies have been up to. I will add that this seiyuu group is an easy sell for me since it’s comprised of four female seiyuu whom I’d be happy to see starring in any series. As music artists, it doesn’t hurt that they’re all pretty attractive and can sing fairly well, which Music Ray’n‘s decision to have them all as solo artists as well seems to reaffirm. Their latest single as a group is titled “Now loading…SKY!!” and is currently featured as the opening theme of the sci-fi romantic comedy Asobi ni Iku yo — a series where all four girls have prominent roles in. While I’m not actively covering the show here, I am following it on a weekly basis and it’s proving to be a nice guilty pleasure of mine. (e.g. I love how the characters keep changing outfits, particularly Kinjou Manami.)

Released a few days ago on July 28th, the limited edition included the full version of the promotional video that’s been featured on their official site for some time now. It isn’t a bad one either, as it features some simple dance choreography and segments with a panorama camera where the girls take turns popping in front to sing their portions of the song. It’s a bit cool to watch since it’s timed to their singing, and if nothing else, gives the girls time to look cute and have some fun. Smiling big seems to be a prominent theme in this music video and the girls look like they’re trying too hard at times, but it does suit the bubbly catchy song itself. Of course, the other thought is that four and a half minutes of these girls looking pretty easily makes it a good PV. At least, that’s what me looping it for the past while seems to indicate.

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July 31, 2010 at 10:26 pm Comments (27)

Takagaki Ayahi – Kimi ga Iru Basho PV (Seikimatsu Occult Gakuin ED)

Takagaki Ayahi’s solo debut single was released last week (7/21) and bundled with the limited edition is the PV to the title track, “Kimi ga Iru Basho”. As a member of the seiyuu group sphere, Ayahi’s solo precedes Kotobuki Minako’s by a couple of months, but seems to be part of some master plan by their record label, Music Ray’n (a subdivision of Sony Music Entertainment Japan), to milk their four singers for everything they can. Tomatsu Haruka already had her solo debut prior to the formation of sphere, whereas Toyosaki Aki had hers not too long after. The fact that they all have official websites under their own .com domains sort of reiterates how much they’re being promoted separately and together, which is actually nice to see since seiyuu groups don’t tend to last very long. I find sphere to be one of the better groups to come along since all the girls can sing well enough on their own to justify solo debuts, so it’ll be interesting to see how much more of their music is featured in upcoming anime.

As for Ayahi’s debut single that’s featured as the ending theme of Seikimatsu Occult Gakuin this season, I thought it was a really catchy song when I first heard it, which was only overshadowed a bit by the ending sequence featuring real kids. In comparison, I find the full version even better, which is something I tend to say a lot but isn’t always the case. (Lia’s CLANNAD ~AFTER STORY~ OP and MUCC’s Senkou no Night Raid OP come to mind.) What’s interesting to note about the petite girl with the big voice is that her single also features a third English track titled “You Raise Me Up” (see below), an inspirational New Age song written by Secret Garden and covered by over a hundred artists to date. Ayahi’s English pronunciation isn’t perfect, but her opera singing skills do come through a bit in that song. She did attend and graduate from a music university after all, so it’s nice to see her finally get into the music industry on top of being a seiyuu.

Her singing profession doesn’t take precedence over her acting one however, as she currently plays Kuroki Ami in Seikimatsu Occult Gakuin and stars as the lovely Ferris Eris in Densetsu no Yuusha no Densetsu (a.k.a. The Legend of the Legendary Heroes). She also narrates in Asobi ni Iku yo, alongside all the other sphere members’ roles.

“You Raise Me Up”

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July 26, 2010 at 12:00 pm Comments (14)

Girls Dead Monster – Day Game PV (Angel Beats!)

It’s been well over three weeks since the end of Angel Beats, but Key and Maeda Jun don’t seem to want to let us forget that easily. They’ve recently released another Girls Dead Monster song and a PV to go along with it. With a male band this time around, it’s less so Gldemo and more just LiSA with this “Day Game” song though. I’m a bit indifferent about the song after listening to it for the past while and still prefer Little Braver if I had to choose between the two, but it’s always nice to see more Angel Beats related stuff. The baseball bat scene at the end is undoubtedly a reference to Yui’s one in episode ten, whereas the gymnasium is reminiscent of the one in the series as well. LiSA’s school uniform gets my vote of approval, but the circular track that’s used for the camera in the gymnasium portions of the PV just makes me dizzy. In any case, the bonus fourteenth episode on the last DVD/BD volume won’t be coming out until December 22nd of this year, so we’ll just have to take whatever we can get for now.

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July 20, 2010 at 5:56 pm Comments (23)

K-ON! Live Event ~Let’s Go!~ (2009.12.30 in Yokohama Arena)


As some people are already aware, the K-ON live concert that took place at the end of last year at Yokohama Arena was released on DVD and Blu-ray on June 30th. It was near the end of this live event that the surprise announcement for a second season was made. While that came as a pleasant surprise, the concert itself was what I dying to see at the time and here we are six months later. Most of Houkago Tea Time’s songs were performed to a karaoke backtrack with the seiyuu only pretending to play each of their characters’ instruments, but they did learn how to play a couple of songs themselves. The actual live music performances were saved until near the end of the concert, but things started off with a bang and an opening performance of “Cagayake! GIRLS” after a crowd countdown.

Yokohama Arena’s max capacity is 17,000 for those wondering, and by the looks of it, it’s a sold-out crowd they performed in front of. One side of the arena was sectioned off for the stage area, but I’d wager that there are at least 15,000 attendees at this concert. When things are put into that perspective, it’s pretty easy to see why K-ON!! is airing on 28 different stations right now.

*Note: Lots of videos after the jump and not recommended for those without the bandwidth speed to handle it! I was pretty aggressive with encoding, but you’re still looking at 20-30MB per video.

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July 14, 2010 at 3:49 pm Comments (70)

Mizuno Saaya – My Secret PV (Kaichou wa Maid-sama! OP)

Rikkyo University history major Mizuno Saaya makes her major music debut with the opening theme to Kaichou wa Maid-sama, “My Secret”. She actually qualified in a vocal audition held by Smile Company back in 2004 and has appeared in magazines as a “reader model” (a normal reader who gets featured in issues for being exceptionally pretty), but only now is she really taking center stage with a record label from Geneon Universal Entertainment. While simple, the PV for this song pretty much speaks for itself on why 20-year-old Saaya has graced the pages of various magazines. However, I’m just as impressed by her singing ever since I first heard this song as the opening theme of the anime. Admittedly, I had absolutely no idea who she was then, which given how this is her major debut explains why that is. As a member of Smile Company, she’s in the same agency as ELISA, whom is equally dazzling with her angelic-like voice. Having listened to Saaya’s first single for a while now, I find her voice really pleasant on the ears and am quite fond of the second track “Good Day”. Anyway, be sure to check out her official site for a really adorable picture of her. The single “My Secret” was released back on May 26th and like most limited editions, included the PV above with it.

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June 20, 2010 at 12:41 am Comments (14)

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