Attention please! We are looking for a new writer!

電波の世界 started in December 2007 and while our passion for the genre has only increased over the years, it's been difficult to find time for new articles and features. That's why we (denpanosekai and mandichan) are looking for an enthusiastic new writer! Here are some typical articles and tasks:

※ album previews and reviews
※ event reports (comiket, M3, live, etc.)
※ artist spotlights and interviews
※ denpa watchlist renewal
※ a new theme would be nice!

Do you want to make a difference and contribute to the original and leading source for English denpa news worldwide? Please contact denpanosekai [at] gmail [dot] com today!

Tuesday, 28 April 2009

IOSYS demoes its upcoming M3 releases


The official "We Are IOSYS" website was updated today with crossfade sampler MP3s from two brand new IOSYS albums set to be released on May 5th 2009 when the 23rd M3 event hits Tokyo's Ota City. While the Comiket alternative is still far from threatening to overtake its big brother, it has significantly grown in scale as you can tell from this current list of participating circles. Already, the 24th event has been planned for this year's October, so that's one more thing to look forward to. Please note that the We Are IOSYS website also offers full lyrics to each and every track, simply by clicking the song names.

The first one, titled 「君と出会って二年過ごした私が 微妙に変わった理由」 is a compilation of brand new Hatsune Miku songs which will no doubt prove successful. The sampler reveals a variety of genres, including some strong rock tracks leading the way. Correct me if I'm wrong, but this might be the first IOSYS-produced Hatsune Mike album. But as good as Miku still sounds, it does look as though the aging virtual diva has stopped learning new tricks some time ago. Here's hoping the new vocaloids will be given more exposure in the near future, but at this rate...

The second album is 「Shall We IOSYS?」, the third volume in the recent 「We Are IOSYS」 series which previously featured 「We Are IOSYS」 in August 2008 and 「Are You IOSYS?」 in December 2008. Judging by the sampler, the same mishmash of musical genres marks a return, but the standout track looks like it will be "Chocolate Lip", produced by Innocent Key's yohine and sung by the lovely Ayu. The dark and gloomy "JOURNEY" should be interesting too, sung by the mysterious and karate-obsessed 龍波しゅういち. Overall, it sounds like IOSYS are finally managing to break free from their perpetual Touhou-arranging stigma and move into their own production domain.

That's not to say that they're going to stop producing their famous ZUN tributes. Certainly, M3 will be a good occasion for them to push their recent greatest hits compilation 「東方月燈籠セーフ!」 as well as their eleventh Touhou album 「東方超都魔転」 (English: "Just A Moment"), ARM's first solo album "BLOOM" and of course Monotone, ARM's first self-produced album featuring the deceptively-named Sapporo voice unit.


In related IOSYS news, their popular Princess Party opening theme "Princess Party~青春禁止令~" will be part of a vocal album compilation, also due out May 5th incidentally. The other songs weren't composed by IOSYS, but the prospect of a full-length version of said theme song is probably good enough for most fans. The question now is: will the full-length version of their PAI★TOUCH theme ever get a proper release?

Monday, 27 April 2009

New MOSAIC.WAV PV 「Superluminal Ж AKIBA-POP」


Please make sure to watch it in high quality (just press the HQ button) as Youtube kinda gimped the sound on the regular version. Better yet, go ahead and download your very own copy.

This marks the second time that MOSAIC.WAV uses Akihabara as the background to a promotional video, however the first one (incidentally their first PV as well) relied on anime-style characters and mi~ko's signature flash animation instead of this much more efficient 3D-model/stop-motion style. Besides, this new one goes above and beyond by taking the viewer directly to the heart of the world's geekiest district. IMHO it also features a much better song!

Saturday, 25 April 2009

New POLYSICS PV brings in the thrash



Oh no, POLYSICS haven't lost it. The rambunctious Tokyo-based "technicolor pogo punk" Devo-worshiping quartet recently released their umpteenth single "Shout Aloud! / Beat Flash" in as many years. Seriously though, that's 11 singles in 11 years, but I think even their leader Hayashi-san lost count by now. Don't bother him with numbers anyway, he'd much rather be at Burger King, receiving his own MOOG multi-pedal or playing an infinite amount of shows per year.

The PV came out in early February, but the single was released on March 11th 2009.

Tuesday, 21 April 2009

Can a Momoi theme song grant infallible power?



Quick follow-up on the recent Momoi-doing-kickboxing-themes story. The fight just wrapped up and the video was already uploaded to Youtube, so check it out! I'm not gonna spoil the ending but let's just say.... Jienotsu probably danced longer outside of the ring than inside! Oooomph! But you gotta respect a guy who has the balls to pull off a Dokuro-chan cosplay.

OK now that you've seen the video, boy he got clobbered eh? He'd still kick all of our asses, of course, but it makes you think: maybe he overdid it with the cosplaying, theme song, intro rehearsal, in-store appearances and completely forgot to focus on the fight itself. His latest blog post is a bit gloomy but he's not throwing the towel just yet. As of this writing, there are an astounding 1700 comments wishing him well! It's clear he now has to concentrate on fighting and drop the sideline stuff. Hope that's no ill sales omen for Akihabalove's third single.

Saturday, 18 April 2009

ave;new delays 「A LA MODE 2」 once again


And they're not saying why either. Their second moe/denpa compilation album has been pushed back to mid-June, 06/12/09 to be exact. Recall that it was originally slated for mid-March, then mid-May and now mid-June. At least the above animation provides a bit more information on the tracklist, but it is still shrouded in mystery. One thing I can appreciate is that doreCHU is very upfront about the album being a DENPA compilation. Lately the term seems to have been eschewed a little bit from all major players. We've already discussed of its possibly negative connotations in the past.


new;Fable

On the other hand, vol. 2 of ave;new's "rare track collection" series has not gone through any setbacks whatsoever and hit Japanese music stores as expected on April 17th. If you can't physically haul ass and pick up your own copy in person, fear not. They released about a sixth of the album online in the form of a 9 minute long non-stop-remix that criss-crosses between the 13 tracks that make up "new;Fable". You can listen to it either via the embedded player on ave;new's homepage or by downloading it directly, courtesy of my xXx-treme "View Page Source" skillz.


魂の決起集会

Finally, ave;new will host their first Akihabara concert on May 11th 2009 at Club Goodman. The usual suspects will be performing but who knows if there will be any live Hatsune songs? There seems to be a new official fanclub in the making, but I don't really pay attention to these things. Full details here for those interested.

Saturday, 11 April 2009

Exclusive team Love Bullets (井上みゆ/磯村カイ) interview


By now, you should be very familiar with GWAVE's latest pet project, the LOVE BULLETS series, which prominently features 井上みゆ (INOUE miyu) as the lead singer. What about those crazy sounds behind her lovely voice? Save for a few guest collaborations, 磯村カイ (ISOMURA kai), the second half of Team Love Bullets, is the musical mastermind behind it all. Join us as we sit down for a virtual cup of coffee with Japan's latest (or sole?) "moe R&B" duo.


GWAVE has recently turned LOVE BULLETS into a series, with the release of a second volume in March 2009. Was this the plan all along, or was it due to strong fan appreciation? Should we expect a third volume too?

磯村カイ: You are right, it was prompted by strong fan reaction to the first album. I don't want to jinx it, but chances are good that a third volume could follow suit. Especially if fan reaction to the second volume is as strong as it was for the first one.

井上みゆ: Personally, I am just so happy to hear that people are enjoying our songs and that we got the opportunity to make another Love Bullets album. I like to call our genre "Moe R&B", it really represents the kind of music I want to sing. Plus I think that the jacket illustrations are totally cute!




How have fans reacted to 1×8 ラブ・バレット? It seems to me like it would be your most recognizable song to this day. After all, that’s what the new GWAVE series is named after.

磯村カイ: On a personal level, this song means a lot to me! It marks the beginning of my collaboration with 井上みゆ. As soon as it was published, the reaction was very good so we decided to continue working together. For this opportunity, I am very thankful; therefore this song holds a special meaning for myself. The song has been described as "full of energy" by yourself and many Japanese fans, so this greatly pleases me as this was my original intention. Listening to this song helps me forget about sad feelings and annoying real life situations. If it has the same effect for other people, then I am honored!

井上みゆ: It does seem like this is a very popular song with the fans! After this, we worked together on 「モノモノ☆ダンスフィーバー」 which cemented our team spirit! It was featured on GWAVE vol. 10. My producer prior to team Love Bullets was GWAVE's 加藤義治 (KATOU Yoshiharu), who is now responsible for planning and producing our new releases, so I am very grateful to him.


Have you ever visited North America? Did you know there were team Love Bullets fans outside of Japan?

磯 村カイ: I did travel to the United States once, but that was a long time ago. Way before denpa was even considered as a genre, actually. To tell you the truth, I had no idea this kind of music was starting to become popular outside of Japan, until I started talking to you by email!

井上みゆ: Actually I once lived in Illinois! But I too had no idea that we had some international fans. This makes me feel privileged, I hope everyone will enjoy our new songs.


Mr. Isomura, please tell us about TONAKAI sound works and the services you provide.

磯村カイ: Certainly! Since 2004, we are in the business of providing original theme songs, background music (BGM) and sound effects for anyone who needs them, which is mostly video game companies these days. As it stands, TONAKAI sound works has only one full-time employee; that would be myself! But of course I work with various vocalists, such as Miyu-san and collaborate with other sound units such as MOSAIC.WAV. For a complete list of our past projects, please visit the official TONAKAI website.


When game companies contact you for themes or BGM, what is the process like? Do they impose certain restrictions that limit your creativity?

磯村カイ: As much as possible, there is a constant flow of discussion between myself and the company which requested the work. My goal is obviously to make sure that they are satisfied with the final product. Of course, I need to adjust my lyrics and overall mood of the compositions to suit the game's genre, which goes back to my initial point: a wide-open channel of communication is essential. This can be a little frustrating but I prefer to see it as a challenge! To tell you the truth, this has yet to worry me so far.


Do you travel a lot to meet the other artists you are involved with? After all you are based in Osaka.

磯村カイ: Correct, I do travel at least 3 times per year to Tokyo... I love that city so much! This is mostly for recording vocals and meeting people. I do enjoy traveling a lot, since I find it very relaxing and it can be good for creativity! The rest of the work is accomplished inside my home studio. Once in a while, Miyu-san will come and meet me in Osaka.


What artists, producers, singers or game soundtracks have influenced your compositions and vocal performances?

磯村カイ: My musical influence comes from a variety of sources. Some of the artists include Cornelius, Kraftwerk, YMO, Paul Simon, R.E.M., 小西康陽 (PizzicatoV) and 鈴木惣一郎 (World Standard). Of course, I grew up listening to Japanese anime music like many people in my field. That is probably the main source of inspiration for my current music.

井上みゆ: I love a lot of American soul and R&B artists such as the classic Stevie Wonder. Rodney Jerkins is a great producer. I also like Destiny's Child, Ashanti, Aaliyah, En Vogue and everything from Morning Musume.




Recently there have been a lot of DENPA PARTY events in Tokyo. It seems to me like your music would fit in just right with the crowd there. How about a LOVE BULLETS live event?

磯村カイ: I actually haven't performed live yet, nor do I have any plans to do so in the near future. I have heard of DENPA PARTY but I don't know too many details about them. On the other hand, a LOVE BULLETS live concert isn't such a bad idea. We'll see how fans react to the second volume first, but that is definitely a possibility!


The TONAKAI website also has some online games (in English no less!). When you were growing up, what kind of job did you think you would do later?

磯村カイ: I'll be honest, I had multiple dream jobs in mind when I was a kid! One of them was definitely to become a game programmer. Somehow I turned out as a musician instead, but I am still working in the game industry. Flash production is a great hobby of mine, I find it very interesting and rewarding. That said, I am considering producing a full Flash game in the future, so please look for that!

井上みゆ: I always knew I would become a singer someday! From the start, I've had nothing but respect for the established voice actors and narrators, so I practiced a lot whenever I could. It seems like most respected voice actors started off as narrators, so I thought I should try that method! My first published song was 「夢見る乙女達☆」 from UNiSONSHIFT in 2003. I am also interested in the aspect of voice work production in general. You could say that singing is both my hobby and my job, but I sometimes prefer to think of myself as a narrator, telling many stories through songs. I also like to reconstruct songs on my own... but since there are no deadlines, I'm not getting a lot done!


Thanks for your time! Good luck with Team Love Bullets!

井上みゆ: Thank you so much for supporting team Love Bullets and doing this interview! It's a very gratifying feeling to know that people outside of Japan are looking forward to our songs m( _ _ )m Hope we can talk again in the future☆

磯村カイ: You're welcome! Actually is I who should thank you for this interview. Having just finished up the second volume of LOVE BULLETS, I can say with confidence that this is some of my best work yet. I hope people all over the world will appreciate this new album!

Wednesday, 8 April 2009

Space Invaders Extreme 2 taking cue from IOSYS?



I was first going to use the "Space Invaders taking cue from Touhou?" title, but pundits would have been quick to remind me that Touhou owes a lot to Space Invaders in the first place. So I went with IOSYS, even though they have nothing to do with this... or do they? Surely publishing giant Square Enix must have noticed the millions of dollars that otaku gamers spend on doujin articles each year, so perhaps this moe level is a nod to this "industry"... or a way to hook said gamers in. Besides, SHAM STUDIO happen to have their offices located in the same building as Taito and mi~ko has provided voices for Final Fantasy 12 in the past, so it's a small world after all.

Space Invaders Extreme 2 (NDS) came out in Japan on March 25th 2009, but an English version of the venerable SHMUP's second remix is rumored for this summer. The previous one was an enjoyable romp and a great example of retro-done-right, so pick it up if you don't already have it. On the other hand, it doesn't have much competition on the DS, except for the wonderful Ketsui Death Label...

Source: Siliconera.com

Sunday, 5 April 2009

MOSAIC.WAV 「Superluminal Ж AKIBA-POP」 final details


Looks like our previous conjecturing wasn't too far off the mark and that MOSAIC.WAV actually listen to what their fans demand! As predicted, the "time travel" theme is the driving force behind this new compilation album, but they dug up much older bones than this blogger imagined! Surprisingly, none of the most recent songs (i.e anything from 2008) will be featured on Superluminal, which definitely leads to believe that a fifth album is planned for 2010.

On the other hand, they managed to sneak in 2006's absolutely BRUTAL 「シリーシンフォニー」, which I personally requested some time ago. But they also allowed themselves some personal satisfaction by including both 「ふたりのKiss」 and 「百合星式おゆうぎうた」, the two songs which kayapi-sama previously confessed were his proudest achievements. Here is the final tracklist, complete with links to samples:
  1. 洗脳・搾取・虎の巻 (sample)
  2. ぱんちゅありー (sample)
  3. シリーシンフォニー (sample)
  4. こいはぐ (sample)
  5. 空から女の子が降ってくる街 (new song)
  6. にゅーすたいるおんらいん
  7. 愛の個人授業 (sample)
  8. Love Cheek? (new song)
  9. 百合星式おゆうぎうた (sample)
  10. 百合星人ナオコサン (sample)
  11. LOCAL JESUS (new song)
  12. 妄想網 Ж Superluminal (new song)
  13. ふたりのKiss (sample)
The new songs sound like they could be really interesting. First off, "Love Cheek?" is most definitely a Love Cheat self-remake, though this hasn't been confirmed and will likely be a surprise until the album comes out. They are very much aware that this is one of their most popular songs, so this is a nice way to reach out to the fans. Track #6 is a theme song for the "Net Runner" magazine, but there doesn't seem to be a sample version anywhere so this might as well be considered a new song. "LOCAL JESUS"... wow. Absolutely no info on that one, but that title makes it sound like a Deathcycle song (RIP). And finally track #12 is most likely the transgenerational song that was suggested to them on this very blog (oh, how we love to toot our own horn).

Furthermore, the "tour" dates have also been announced. There's only three of them, but that was expected since Japanese folks have a very different definition of the word tour than we do here in North America. You can find them in the "Denpa Watchlist" to your right. Finally, Views Corporation will handle the distribution of this 4th album, their second MOSAIC.WAV release after last year's "KodoYami" mini-album. Looks like they burned all bridges with Russell. Unfortunately for those of us living outside of Japan, CDjapan will not be selling the album at this time and since amazon.co.jp has it tagged as CD-ROM, this means potential importers are S.O.L. for the moment.

Wednesday, 1 April 2009

Momoi Haruko moving into kickboxer "fight song" industry


Ahh, the lovely 桃井はるこ (MOMOI Haruko). Such a joker, that lass. She recently launched her own label AKIHABALOVE RECORDS and hasn't wasted a single second, with her first single due out April 9th and a second one for May 27. More interestingly though is the recent announcement that her third self-produced single 「自演乙ソング」 will actually contain a new "fight song" to be used as the introduction theme of a professional Japanese kickboxer. Ehhh... April Fools', right?

Wait, what? This shit's for real?!? Awesome. Apparently this guy 長島☆自演乙☆雄一郎 (NAGAJIMA "Jienotsu" Juichiro) is the current K-1 middleweight champion but much like CM Punk, he comes with a unique "gimmick": he is a hardcore otaku cosplayer. Not only does he frequently dress up as Hatsune Miku or Suzumiya Haruhi, he also uses the Macross Frontier theme for his introduction sequence... up until now, that is.

The not-so-unlikely-after-all pair met late last year at some anime event in Osaka, where Jienotsu invited Momoi to one of his fights. One thing led to another and much to his joy, she agreed to write a brand new song for his opening act. His next fight is scheduled for April 21st (with the single launching on June 17) but already, this guy is pumped! To him, Momoi is nothing less but a goddess. In his own words, this new opening song will give him "Hyper-performing-myself-time invocation!" so let's just say that expectations are high: this theme song better deliver!

* photo courtesy of natalie.mu