Wednesday, August 18, 2010

fripSide "Only My Railgun" Live

I liked "Only My Railgun" last fall as the OP of To Aru Kagaku no Railgun. And I love it now when I see the video of fripSide performing it in person at the Music Japan anime song event in June.

You may prefer the other performers at the event, which was a kind of mini-Animelo: Mizuki Nana, Chihara Minori, angela, May'N, Takahashi Youko, Tamura Yukari, Granrodeo.

But "Railgun" just grabs me by my low-class pop soul and won't let go. It has energy and melody and drive. It's all "hook."

It's especially effective in a large hall full of roaring, light-stick waving otaku. The somewhat sick-making camera work and Nanjou-san's repetitive movements don't detract from the song's power at all.

The fripSide part of the show starts with a clip of the exotically beautiful Nanjou-san and sat -- who's pretty cute himself -- doing their regular radio show. She asks him when he did the homework assigned during high-school summer vacations: he says he did it in the first week. "Really?" she presses him. "Really," he replies. I guess that's the kind of habit that helps you become a top music programmer.

sat is the heart of the group, writing, programming, and performing all the music. Nanjou-san took over last year from the group's original vocalist, nao, who left to pursue a solo career.

A full video of the concert is on the Chinese video site A clip of the Railgun part alone has been removed from another site.

I have to admit that one of my pleasures in watching the clip was to think how the 26-year-old Nanjou-san, who has been a seiyuu since 2006 with only middling success, is suddenly a star on stage in front of thousands of cheering fans. I felt happy for her. I was one of the few who enjoyed her performance as Koko in D.C. II: Da Capo II in 2007. She also played Maria in Canaan.

And I can't be sure, but I think the voice-over during the interview may be seiyuu Sugita Tomokazu (Gin in Gintama, Kyon in Haruhi).

fripSide CDs available from CD Japan.


skchai said...

For the performers, at least, I would think it's a lot bigger deal than Animelo, since it was broadcast on nationwide terrestrial TV at 6pm - likely the biggest exposure to the mainstream Japanese audience any of them (excluding Nana and maybe May'n) have ever had. Even though the live audience in NHK Hall was so uber-wota that the TV viewers probably were entertained as much by them as by the music.

For me, "Railgun" sounds like it's channeling a typical 90s production by the recently de-jailed Komuro Tetsuya. But putting aside the question of what one likes to hear, that would certainly fit the "all hook" argument.

karayuquex said...

The voice-over was indeed Sugita Tomokazu. I didn't realised until I saw the credits at the end of the show. ^^;;

I really liked this performance too and was touched by the reactions of the audience throughout the entire show.

Anonymous said...

Wow, that is a LOT of people. I like that it really was a live and she was actually singing there instead of those people who lip-synch. Go fripSide!!

skchai said...

Seems there is a reason for sat's Komuro channeling:

小中学生の頃は、小室哲哉さんとか、TMネットワークとかが好きでした。 (4th paragraph).

Digressing a bit, Komuro's self-chosen nickname is "TK". The character TK from Angel Beats is a telegraphed parody not so much of Komuro himself but fans of the Japanese Europop genre he created, one in which copious use of random Engrish was mandatory. All of the Angel Beats TK's dialog comes from actual songs, and his main catchphrase "Get Chance and Luck" is from Komuro's former band TM Network's mega-hit "Get Wild", which ironically was also an anime song - from City Hunter.

hashi said...

@skchai -- Fascinating stuff. Thanks. Interesting also to read that even nao was selected by sat after auditions of 50 different candidates, and that she was only in her second year of high school at the time. Also that sat's mother is a piano teacher, and that he started composing in middle school.

I enjoyed the TM Network clip. Highly danceable. And I especially liked the brief glimpses of the crowd, moving well, with their 20-years-past look, and all 35-40 today, lol. I do wish I could actually understand any of English, lol.