AKB48’s not so distant cousins’ 3rd single is set to top charts again10 August, 2012 by Yan
When they announced that Nogizaka46’s 3rd single was to be released on the 22th August, I couldn’t contain the excitement as the previous 2 single releases for the AKB48 official rival group have been excellent. Though there’s still days remaining to release date, you can count on AKS to have snuck in previews into their variety shows and other media, giving fans the chance to decide for themselves if the new single is worth its value.
Following their previous singles, Hashire! Bicycle goes through the same format of utilizing the heavy use of rhythmic and piano to achieve a more old school feel. While sadly compared to Guruguru Curtain or Oide Shampoo, it is not as rhythmic as the former nor as catchy as the latte, Hashire! Bicycle is still a pretty solid song on its own right.
While I’ll like to be more positive regarding the other several aspects on this new single release, there’s really much to be desired. So let me start with the costumes. Given past experiences on the costume designs for Nogizaka46, I would say that it is not one of their strong points, but Hashire! Bicycle has brought it on to another level.
What makes it slightly different from the previous two singles is that, in addition to the usual single’s performing costume, this time round there’s also a french doll costume incorporated into the promotional video. While I personally find the french pop girls, with their dorky bow cut wig and pastel colored dress much favorable, their main performing costume was more of a letdown, sporting of a highly glittery one piece with matching short pants.
Anyone that has managed to take a sneak peek of the video would agree with me that the brighter pastel colors is a nice change to the previous darker settings of the last 2 singles. To top it off, there’s even laces borders embedded to the whole video to give it a more dreamy feel. What has been making headlines was the inclusion of french subtitles. To some, it was pretty novel, but I did find that the subtitles managed to block a lot of otherwise good shots of the girls.
Unfortunately, the video suffers from really bad direction. The whole thing is filmed on a static set with the girls alternating the choreography in the french pop and the glitter costumes. While I’m no film director myself, it’s pretty evident that the whole dancing part was cut up awkwardly.
What really makes the video a poor promotional video though was the fact that there’s literally only split second closeup shots of the front girls with the rest of the video being far shots. Thanks to this and the wigs, it’s difficult to make out any of the members. Geometric objects placed in the foreground obscure the girls far too often too.
Following its previous type releases, there will be 3 limited CD + DVD editions and a regular one for Hashire! Bicycle. While there’s a different B-side in each type, the main means of getting fans to buy all the versions are still the Creator x Nogizaka shows where each girl is paired with a famous designer/artist/film maker to create unique shows according to the theme and this time round it will be about travel. The videos are also uploaded to Nogizaka46’s YouTube page for viewing, but confusingly access is limited to only Japan.
Even though it’s only the 3rd single so far, I can safely say that like their previous releases, Hashire! Bicycle will go on to snag a sweet spot on the Oricon charts. With their previous 1st and 2nd singles taking second and first places on the charts respectively, one can easily foresee what the end result will be. This is of course partly owing to the fact that Nogizaka46 positions themselves as rivals to their hugely popular cousin group.Click here to search CDJapan for Hashire! Bicycle and other related items.
Addicted to film, Yan shoots with a black Nikon Fm3a. For special occasions, Yan shoots with a Mamiya Sekor TLR.