「やってみなきゃ分からない。」

“No Way Man” by AKB48 | I was going to run away with notes that this new single from the Japanese idol supergroup (roughly) is definitely informed by all that went down in the past few months. The choreography is definitely different from most J-pop groups, although Shalla is quick to point out that NMB48 does stuff sort of like this for a while now. The music video is more kinetic than usual. Flashback to the first couple of episodes of Produce 48, where almost every Japanese trainee were ranked D or F – not that they’re terrible, but unlike Korean idols, who train to impress, Japanese idols (particularly the 48G ones) train to connect with the audience. It’s a bit of a cultural thing, so this sort of response is interesting. Also connect this to the fact that this is the final single from Miyawaki Sakura, Honda Hitomi and Nako Yabuki before they exclusively join IZ*ONE for two years or so. (Their debut album drops today; we’ll review it on Friday.) And the lyrics can be read as being about the whole experience of the show. And that it’s nice to be reminded that Shitao Miu exists. I say this because I don’t really follow them closely – I take forever to catch-up, and I am still stuck on the original centers, on the generation long gone, arguably the reason why AKB48 is flagging now. (An attempt at rejuvenation?) But then, you get caught up with the Koreans angry that Takeuchi Miyu barely shows up in this, her final pre-graduation single. No, not joining that fight. [NB]

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