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monster

EDIT: this had a frightening number of typos/mistakes even by my standards so I went back and fixed the mistakes. 

EDIT 2: i went back and watched the clip and youtube and read the comments (99% in Japanese since it's a Japanese uploader).  And people are waxing poetic about how amazing Arashi are as singers and dancers.  It was SOOOOOOOOOO tempting to be like "gar har har you fools what the fucking hell are you talking about?" (dunno why I am in such a mean mood right now).  I like Arashi but to say they are good singers/dancers is an insult to those who really are good... Ohchan is good. But the rest... have these guys never seen K-pop or American pop?  Like are they serious? They don't say "for a JE group they are good" or anything like that.  Just flat out, unconditioned praise.  Oooooooh boy.

Okay, thanks for letting me get that out of my system.   If I were to write that in a youtube comment, no matter how much I preceded it with "i really, honestly love Arashi and have loved them for a long time", I would still get death threats XD

arashi hype is still going stroooooong.  Can't wait to see yet another show where people kiss their ass in hopes that their popularity wears off on them!!! *maniacal grin* *coughShimadacoughShinsukecough*

just watched the HD version of their performance and felt compelled to write! (*Gasp*)

Check out the video:


now, onto my commentary.

First off, I like the lyrics.  They are straightforward.  They make sense.  They are in proper grammar.   Hey it's a good situation all over.   Because it is written from the pov of a supernatural person, they can pull off fantastical and poetic terms without it sounding odd.  Like "koyoi no yami e kimi wo izanau" (I lead you into this night's darkness" and "mangetsu no yoru kimi wo mitsuketa" (I found you on a night of the full-moon").  And because it's a story about the monster's humanity, it has some really touching lines.

The chorus line "boku no kioku ga subete kietemo/ umarekawattara mata kimi wo sagasu"
This line really touched me.  It means "even if all my memory disappears, if/when I am reborn I will look for you."
I like how it uses the term "kioku" (memory).  It's a really simple word, a simple concept: even if I forget EVERYTHING, I will still look for you. It's more poignant than a line like "even if my memories of  you fade" or something.  And I like that it's not "I will find you" but "I will look for you".  It's an unassuming and undemanding kind of love.  It's doesn't purport to be able to be with you  - all he wants is to be near you again. I think it's very touching.

"kimi no sakebi de boku wa mezameru" :  This was another one of those supernatural lines that actually work here.  It means "I am awaken by your scream".  Something about your existence being so dependent on another is touching to me.  And again, it's so unassuming.  He knows he's this disgusting monster, so it's her scream, not her kiss or smile or voice or anything like that that awakens him. 

"yo ga akeru made chikaku ni iyou" This is also so sad. It means "I will be near you until dawn".  It's only during the night that he can with be with the person he loves.  Very sad.

Now, I don't know the plot of the drama or the characters from the original anime, so I might be misreading some things.  And there are some pretty aggressive lines in there too, but I think those show the dual nature of a monster: frightening and powerful yet lonely and vulnerable at the same time.

Onto the dance analysis.  Okay, I have to admit, I was kind of snickering the whole time.  But it doesn't mean I didn't like it.  It's very interesting choreography, and I might not like some moments of it, but I like how it's DIFFERENT. It's not your usual, unconvincingly executed lock dance (no one in Arashi, including Ohno, can lock well. He's a good popper though)  I was able to count ballet, tango, jazz, modern ballet, break dance, popping and locking in there.  WOW kitchen sink anyone? lol.  But hey, it's different, and in Johnny's, uniqueness counts for far more than it should.

In terms of execution... I mean it's Arashi. We can't expect too much of them. BUT i have to yell at two individuals: Nino and Aiba. At 2:30, they sing the chorus at a slowed down tempo.  They stand in a circle and (I assume) improvise.  Now, Ohno and Jun and Sho get it.  It's supposed to be this surreal, liquidy, quiet atmosphere.  The background drops to a minimum and there is even some vocal "woo" ing going on. So their moves are slow and lazy (right answer).  Aiba on the other hand is flailing those long arms of him around the whole time.  He can flail, but just flail SLOWLY.  And Nino does well until the "koyoi no YAMI de" part. That is the high note in the line and he has a habit of quickly contracting his upper body when he has to hit a high note.  It's fine in more upbeat songs, but here, it's kind of alarming.  

Personally, I laughed my ass off when Sho and Jun did the tango slide at 2'07 because it's a GIRL MOVE. ( I think - tango dancers, correct me if I am wrong.) Of course Sho's is jerky and not that good and Jun's is as smooth as butter.  Oh that mollusk.

Anyway, to sum up: yay for different choreo and cookies to Arashi for memorizing such an out there routine.  My personal highlight was Ohno's solo at 0:36.  That quick duck to his left on "IZAnau." My most WTF moment was Jun's scissor kicks at 0:51.  Is that even necessary? What does it add other than discomfort for MJ?

Singing-wise, it was typical Arashi fare. No uncomfortable MJ solos this time, though, yay! And Aiba's low voice at 1:01 was pretty sexy. 

oh! time for grocery shopping. see y'alls later!

Comments

( 17 comments — Leave a comment )
sunnydreams416
Apr. 18th, 2010 08:41 pm (UTC)
When I first read some of the translations of the song I thought it was Gothic in essence... it kind of reminded me of Frankenstein a little bit(though it's been a while since I've read it so I don't exactly remember all the details). Very different feel from other Arashi lyrics, I think.
satopi3104
Apr. 20th, 2010 12:51 am (UTC)
you're exactly right - it is very Gothic. That's the idea I was going for but couldn't quite place my finger on.

I am really glad Ohchan is doing this drama. It gives Arashi new material to work with, and I think it will be a good showcase for him too. He is a very versatile actor, so I think he will pull it off well.
sunnydreams416
Apr. 20th, 2010 07:54 pm (UTC)
I'm glad that Ohchan's doing this drama too, especially because I do think he can pull off the role (despite his misgivings of being 30 this year lol). It definitely is a 180 degree turn from Maou!

Even the English comments on youtube are like that! It's kinda scary (but mostly funny in an 'are you serious?' way) the blind devotion these fangirls seem to have.
miung
Apr. 18th, 2010 09:29 pm (UTC)
Aaaaah je suis contente de lire une analyse sur Arashi. Ca faisait si longtemps ;)
J'aime la chanson en particulier le début avec la musique et le solo d'Ohchan ♥ Cela change de leurs titres habituels : ça fait plaisir! Un peu déçue que Nino n'est pas de moment solo durant la chanson mais je suppose qu'il était trop pris par ses tournages au moment de l'enregistrement en studio.

La performance. Déjà j'aime bien leurs costumes. Leur chorégraphie est d'après moi plutôt réussie. Elle diffère un peu de ce qu'ils font d'habitude. Oui le mouvement de MJ sur le sol, c'est marrant xD Ce pas doit l'essouffler plus qu'autre chose mais bon... Est ce pour garder cette image de boysband capable de chanter ET danser? :p
Le passage entre 1:51 et 2:12 : les pas de danse ne sont pas parfaits mais tout de même ♥♥ Jun est trop raide à mon goût alors que Nino ne le serait pas assez. Y a qu'Ohno qui trouve grâce à mes yeux xDD Riida est celui qui maitrise le plus ce passage. Assez logique ceci dit...

Bon maintenant on attend le PV avec plein de monstres partout!! LMAO

Merci pour tes traductions : je comprends mieux certaines subtilités du texte et effectivement les paroles sont jolies ^^
satopi3104
Apr. 20th, 2010 12:57 am (UTC)
oui, ca faisait longtemps - pardon! nino n'a pas de moment solo? je n'ai pas remarquee XP de toute facon c'est vraiment une chanson a Ohchan. Les moments solo des autres membres sont tres courts donc ce n'est pas si etonnant que Nino n'ait pas un solo.

j'ai aussi senti que recemment Arashi fait plus d'effort de garder et creer pour les nouvelles fans l'image qu'ils peuvent chanter et danser. Ils sont trop agees pour l'image mignon en tout cas...

maiaide
Apr. 18th, 2010 11:22 pm (UTC)
I watched that on TV the other night. I wasn't blown away (it's been a while) but the lyrics were interesting! If not kind of stalkery? Which is awesome and mezurashii for a Johnny's song since it's usually about gay rainbows.
satopi3104
Apr. 20th, 2010 12:59 am (UTC)
yay for stalkers!

i think if it weren't tied up with the drama and had this kind of feel, it really would be stalkery and kinda creepy, but since I can't get the image of Oh-chan with the big years and the cute outfit out of my head, stalker is the last thing that comes to mind when I hear this song.
oviparous
Apr. 19th, 2010 03:00 am (UTC)
ユーコポンから久々の発言だね!w

thank you for talking about the lyrics. i don't really pay attention to them because, well, it is my third language and i am not that sensitive to it. but yes, they seem more intriguing now.

so many people are complaining about the scissors move LOLLLL
satopi3104
Apr. 20th, 2010 12:59 am (UTC)
lol they are? haha yeah... it's just so gratuitous. Like woooo! look! add break dancing to the laundry list of dance styles this choreo goes through! yay!

currycroquette
Apr. 20th, 2010 01:39 am (UTC)
Ouch, apparently I have no standards coz I enjoyed it pretty much. It's cool to have someone with a trained eye to point these things out. Yeah, the scissor move and the waltz interlude was kind of awkward for me too, but didn't bothered me that much. I guess once you give into the idol world you don't really think twice about awkward/half-assed choreography unless it's obviously really bad.
satopi3104
Apr. 20th, 2010 02:08 am (UTC)
haha oh no i really didn't mean to make anyone feel bad for enjoying it. I did enjoy it, really! if I didn't, I wouldn't have bothered to write about it.

it was just kind of...bemusing? which is not all that unfitting considering the theme.

and to be honest, I have gotten pretty sensitive about bad JE dancing since I got into DBSK. They are just such better dancers so when you've been watching them dance for months like I have now, going back to Arashi can be quite a shocker. lol.

at the same time I am so over this DBSK drama. I still like them but I don't know how much more of this bitchfest I can take. I am so glad I have calm, mature, grounded Arashi to come back to.
deeya_ohmiya
Apr. 23rd, 2010 10:00 am (UTC)
Hye (^_^)..
I miss your analysis on ARASHI (^_^)..
Well, I agree with you about the lyrics and Jun's scissor kicks..
The step is really not necessary in this song..
But overall, I love the choreography for this song (^_^)..
satopi3104
Apr. 28th, 2010 12:46 pm (UTC)
hi! long time! sorry for being so MIA.

lol I love how NOBODY seems to like the scissor kicks. Aw Jun, now I feel kinda bad for dissing him. (or his moves)

hitsuzenkaze
Apr. 28th, 2010 12:03 pm (UTC)
Okay, I spent 2 hours at work reading your site. Fantastic site! Love the fact that you are an Arashi fan. Love also the fact that you are a rational Arashi fan. Lol.
satopi3104
Apr. 28th, 2010 12:45 pm (UTC)
Hi! yay thanks for reading and commenting! I blush at the idea of someone spending that much time to read my posts.

trivialaffair
Apr. 29th, 2010 06:14 pm (UTC)
LOLOLOL waxing poetic about arashi's singing/dancing abilities. that is laughable. still, the song's pretty catchy o_O. moan-stah!
mikandrops
May. 16th, 2010 01:13 pm (UTC)
ditto!
i fell inlove with the lyrics too =)
to put it simply - its sweet.
it doesnt have the embelishments of the usual
cheesy love lines of songs
but the message the "monster" conveyed was
very efficient - straighforward with maximum effect =)
( 17 comments — Leave a comment )