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  #161  
Old 21st March 2012, 06:38 PM
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I expected a drop. I seriously, seriously did not expect PQ to sell less in two days than FIVE, a mini-album, did in one day. I think this says very different things about how fans are actually responding to this album than some here are saying.

That said, I knew when I saw the covers this would not be a #1 album. I have had zero doubt this is not a #1 record since I started hearing clips and this Timmy guy is literally **everywhere**. He is in the PVs, the production, the singing, etc. There is so little focus on Ayumi with this record. I think, like most people, we're wondering whether Ayumi Hamasaki is a musician or a group now? And FIVE was very similar to this, but I think people bought into the idea because FIVE is a mini-album and her collaborations (NAOYA and JUNO) weren't masquerading as unknown, unnamed people.

A lot of talk was going on before that Naoya and Juno were using Ayumi to jumpstart their solo careers. I think it should be even clearer that Timmy is *everywhere* on this album and the PVs, and he genuinely behaves as if he is (talent- and fame-wise) Ayumi's equal... and does this **on Ayumi's own record**.

There are literally times during NaNaNa and Shake It<3 that the focus of the video is not on Ayumi being the musician, but on Ayumi and Timmy being the musicians/dancers/kawaii. It's confusing. His antics on camera, the pouty gay face and awkward dancing are distracting. I am only thankful he was not in Return Road's PV, but still disappointed that he is a presence in some way in every song or video chosen to promote this album.

Timothy's presence is the first major downfall. He adds a sprinkle of excitement here and there, but this isn't a sprinkle. If this record were an ice cream cone, it would be equal parts ice cream and sprinkles, and as you tried to enjoy the ice cream, you'd find poop-flavored sprinkles hidden in the ice cream. That's what Timmy does to the record: He distracts, in good and bad ways, but after some time you aren't sure you're even listening to an Ayumi Hamasaki record anymore.

The second major downfall is the lack of a preceding single. This is Ayumi's first album in over a year (not counting FIVE). Between then and now, she could have released a single. There are songs on PQ, such as Return Road, that people like myself are wondering *why* they were not singles. She may lose her #1 streak if she puts out a crappy single, but she's guaranteed to lose it if she waits to put out a single at all.

Third, the covers. I feel inappropriate looking at them. I have been uncomfortable with some album covers in the past. Misono had her "Me" cover, Seiko Matsuda had her album "Sunshine" (look http://www.generasia.com/wiki/File:Sunshine.jpg ... I need to wash my eyes out after seeing that cover.) But Misono and Matsuda are expected to do crazy things like that. Misono IS crazy, and Matsuda IS grasping at straws to sell records. Ayumi has been classfully topless in prior album covers, but this was bad. Very bad. She looks like a ****. That's all I can say. I expect this out of Koda Kumi, but the fact that I thoroughly enjoy JAPONESQUE covers and not Party Queen covers is... well, a sign for me that Ayumi is trying to fix a career that isn't actually broken.

Last, I'm used to bad songs and interludes that suck, but this is her third record to contain a boring classical interlude that has no feeling in it. Interludes went from GUILTY and NEXT LEVEL sounding cool and challenging to sounding cheap and uninspired. I would have found new people to do interludes before Love songs. And the bad songs are really bad songs now. I thought Thank you was ridiculous. Letter and the next LOVE and maybe even Eyes, Smoke, Magic trumped that song easily.

If I were in Ayumi's shoes, I would cancel the tour and record a new album over the next several months for release before the end of the year. This album was really, really disappointing. We have a few gems and jewels in here, but this is overall nothing that we should have been given as fans.

It's just miles away from what "quality" has been for Ayumi's career until now.
  #162  
Old 21st March 2012, 06:38 PM
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Humm.. I haven't bought this album yet, but it's only because I'm saving money for my trip. Next month I will definetely buy it.
edit: @orbitalaspect, you said some good points, I agree that the lack of single is one reason for these sales. And maybe Timmy, who knows,but Covers - definetely.
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Last edited by jewelbox; 21st March 2012 at 06:45 PM.
  #163  
Old 21st March 2012, 06:44 PM
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Originally Posted by orbitalaspect View Post
If I were in Ayumi's shoes, I would cancel the tour and record a new album over the next several months for release before the end of the year. This album was really, really disappointing. We have a few gems and jewels in here, but this is overall nothing that we should have been given as fans.

It's just miles away from what "quality" has been for Ayumi's career until now.
Absurd.
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  #164  
Old 21st March 2012, 06:57 PM
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I guess it is a good thing that the tour is still the Love Songs tour and not the Party Queen Tour. I wonder why she didn't release a single prior to the album. That should've helped, at least a bit? For the 4 PV arguments, I'd rather have only one amazing PV like RAINBOW, for example, over 2 mediocre PV's and 2 nice PV's. Strange argument.
  #165  
Old 21st March 2012, 07:00 PM
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Well,maybe what i'm going to say it's totally wrong.
seeing the reviews (coz have not listened to the album yet,i'm waiting for my copy) it seems that is a really 'western' album,isn't it?
So...i just think that people who don't like this album have a really different tastes from what they heard,but it doesn't mean that the album is bad.I'm pretty sure that the favorite music from people who don't like the album are anime's song,typical lovely jpop,kawaii stupid voices and so on.So i think this is the reason because they don't like this album and this facet of the new Ayu.
As i said,i have not listened to the album yet but i'm sure i'll love it.I love the concept,the covers are the most sexiest and meaningful thing Ayu ever did,and the songs seems to be really different from what we have heard from her.
I would be disappointed if this album were the 'typical' thing,but not because it's different.
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  #166  
Old 21st March 2012, 07:01 PM
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whether you liked the album or didnt is simply based on your opinion... I like the album, not really because it has a lot of "epic" songs in it, but because the album as a whole had a story. When I first heard the album was gonna be called "Party Queen" and saw the covers for it I was like ,"WTH AYU... You're going through so much right now and you wanna make an album like this!" But when you listen to the whole album, you see that it's simply a mask she has on to hide what she's really feeling.
Unfortunately, people wont see that unless they take away what they see on the outside and explore what the album really is about through the songs. Im not saying that it'll make you like the songs,but after I thought of the album this way it did make me feel pretty bad for doubting ayu's talent lately. I think that the way they presented the album though their music videos and even some of her mag pics, gave her fans the wrong idea. At least it did for me.
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  #167  
Old 21st March 2012, 07:04 PM
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Originally Posted by orbitalaspect View Post
I expected a drop. I seriously, seriously did not expect PQ to sell less in two days than FIVE, a mini-album, did in one day. I think this says very different things about how fans are actually responding to this album than some here are saying.

That said, I knew when I saw the covers this would not be a #1 album. I have had zero doubt this is not a #1 record since I started hearing clips and this Timmy guy is literally **everywhere**. He is in the PVs, the production, the singing, etc. There is so little focus on Ayumi with this record. I think, like most people, we're wondering whether Ayumi Hamasaki is a musician or a group now? And FIVE was very similar to this, but I think people bought into the idea because FIVE is a mini-album and her collaborations (NAOYA and JUNO) weren't masquerading as unknown, unnamed people.

A lot of talk was going on before that Naoya and Juno were using Ayumi to jumpstart their solo careers. I think it should be even clearer that Timmy is *everywhere* on this album and the PVs, and he genuinely behaves as if he is (talent- and fame-wise) Ayumi's equal... and does this **on Ayumi's own record**.

There are literally times during NaNaNa and Shake It<3 that the focus of the video is not on Ayumi being the musician, but on Ayumi and Timmy being the musicians/dancers/kawaii. It's confusing. His antics on camera, the pouty gay face and awkward dancing are distracting. I am only thankful he was not in Return Road's PV, but still disappointed that he is a presence in some way in every song or video chosen to promote this album.

Timothy's presence is the first major downfall. He adds a sprinkle of excitement here and there, but this isn't a sprinkle. If this record were an ice cream cone, it would be equal parts ice cream and sprinkles, and as you tried to enjoy the ice cream, you'd find poop-flavored sprinkles hidden in the ice cream. That's what Timmy does to the record: He distracts, in good and bad ways, but after some time you aren't sure you're even listening to an Ayumi Hamasaki record anymore.

The second major downfall is the lack of a preceding single. This is Ayumi's first album in over a year (not counting FIVE). Between then and now, she could have released a single. There are songs on PQ, such as Return Road, that people like myself are wondering *why* they were not singles. She may lose her #1 streak if she puts out a crappy single, but she's guaranteed to lose it if she waits to put out a single at all.

Third, the covers. I feel inappropriate looking at them. I have been uncomfortable with some album covers in the past. Misono had her "Me" cover, Seiko Matsuda had her album "Sunshine" (look http://www.generasia.com/wiki/File:Sunshine.jpg ... I need to wash my eyes out after seeing that cover.) But Misono and Matsuda are expected to do crazy things like that. Misono IS crazy, and Matsuda IS grasping at straws to sell records. Ayumi has been classfully topless in prior album covers, but this was bad. Very bad. She looks like a ****. That's all I can say. I expect this out of Koda Kumi, but the fact that I thoroughly enjoy JAPONESQUE covers and not Party Queen covers is... well, a sign for me that Ayumi is trying to fix a career that isn't actually broken.

Last, I'm used to bad songs and interludes that suck, but this is her third record to contain a boring classical interlude that has no feeling in it. Interludes went from GUILTY and NEXT LEVEL sounding cool and challenging to sounding cheap and uninspired. I would have found new people to do interludes before Love songs. And the bad songs are really bad songs now. I thought Thank you was ridiculous. Letter and the next LOVE and maybe even Eyes, Smoke, Magic trumped that song easily.

If I were in Ayumi's shoes, I would cancel the tour and record a new album over the next several months for release before the end of the year. This album was really, really disappointing. We have a few gems and jewels in here, but this is overall nothing that we should have been given as fans.

It's just miles away from what "quality" has been for Ayumi's career until now.
so...in order to restore her career, gain back her fans, etc... ayu should cancel her upcoming tour? yeah, i'm sure that would really make her fans go wild with happiness.

as for timmy/urata/juno using ayu to boost their careers, i am so sick of this argument. ayu does what she wants. if she wants to work with these people, it is her decision, its not as if they have tricked her into working with them just for their own gain. ayu did it because she wanted to. timmy is prominent right now because ayu is doing what she wants.

and most people are wondering whether ayu is a solo artist or a group now? uhmmm...i think most people are not wondering that at all. did we wonder that when shuya was in her PVs and in all her concerts? nope. obviously, some people don't like timmy, but i really think people are over exaggerating how much he's being featured. the only part where he is really obvious is in the NaNaNa rap, all his appearances in PVs and etc... are no different than Shuya's appearances or even random background chorals.

ayu has used choirs and stuff so many times and no one minded, i think its only because this is timmy that people take offense.

i do sort of agree with you on fans response though. it seems like a lot of people on AHS love the music, but honestly, it always seems to me that the more AHS loves a song/album, the less the japanese like it.
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  #168  
Old 21st March 2012, 07:04 PM
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Honestly, to my mind, this album deserves a flop. I feel betrayed. I've been admiring Ayu for 6 years, saying everytime, that she's strong and smart and she sings her heart out, but I'm just too tired from her experiments. I really loved everything about Love Songs, I found FIVE pretty good, and thought that Timmy did his job well in BRILLANTE and that he's going to give new life to her lyrics with cool and extraordinary music in the new album, instead of that I recieve tacky songs and just ugly, nonprofessional cover. I don't know why she does it. Doesn't she think, that cheap look will spoil her reputation? I think this album doesn't deserve a promotion.
I want songs like MW or T2M. Meaningful, sad, songs that bring tears to eyes because of the music and lyrics. It's all so disapointing. Why she's doing all that, I don't understand.
  #169  
Old 21st March 2012, 07:08 PM
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It's all so disapointing. Why she's doing all that, I don't understand.
because she wants to?
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  #170  
Old 21st March 2012, 07:20 PM
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Oh my god! The first album cover with an actual concept since ages ago! Kill it with fire!
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  #171  
Old 21st March 2012, 07:27 PM
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so it's number 2....

26 interviews.... a bit late.... well, better late than never

hope she'll get number 1 weekly.


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ABC is the solo project of Janne Da Arc's main lead vocalist who everyone all knows him as yasu

JDA has been on indefinite hiatsu for the past few years & in place , ABC has been active since 2007

I'm an ABC fan & I wouldn't deny this but 2012 is really good , probably my fave album from him/them outta the other 2 albums he/they've released as I find BLACK LIST & Q.E.D. too dark for my liking X.X
oh! Janne Da Arc!! I remember them. I think I even liked some of their songs, though I don't remember melody now

thanks for reply!
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  #172  
Old 21st March 2012, 07:27 PM
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Sales must rise! Such a good album.
Btw, people mistake personal opinion with "facts" too much...
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  #173  
Old 21st March 2012, 07:30 PM
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Oh my god! The first album cover with an actual concept since ages ago! Kill it with fire!
If it's not an eye candy people won't dig it...that's the main issue. I don't have a problem with it, but people are generally shallow and dumb so yeah.
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  #174  
Old 21st March 2012, 07:41 PM
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Glad it got #2, it is not a #1 album. Maybe next time she'll step up her game.
  #175  
Old 21st March 2012, 07:48 PM
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honestly, i don't like the covers, especially THAT certain cover, and 2 of the 4 PVs are absolutely terrible...but who cares? the fact is, i buy an album for the music. i'll watch the PVs a handful of times, and only use the cover as album art in iTunes, but i'll listen to the songs over and over again. the songs are the important part, and she nailed it this time!

that and she doesn't owe us a bazillion PVs. i think 4 is actually quite ok, Ayu fans are just spoiled.
Sorry, I don't think that not liking an aspect of a release makes the fans spoiled. For may people, buying an album means liking the whole package. The PVs represent images one often associates with the song, can give the song depth etc. Ayu used to have some of the best PVs and fans have the right to be disappointed and boycott the release if they feel that she didn't put in any effort. Its their money and their choice. You being happy with the album doesn't mean that you and everyone else share the same taste and thus should be satisfied. I personally am getting Cd only cause I don't care about the PVs but even then I'm not going to assume that others would be ok with such a choice.

I think the sales reflect that alot of people are unaware of the release and many of those that do are unhappy. Its up to her to take it from there. No one said she has to satisfy everyone, but obviously when your core fanbase is unhappy or indifferent, you have a big problem.

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Originally Posted by njanjayrp View Post
If it's not an eye candy people won't dig it...that's the main issue. I don't have a problem with it, but people are generally shallow and dumb so yeah.
Way to generalize. Maybe if the concept was better executed it would appeal to more people. If it was an issue of shallowness, more people would buy an album that resembled their own lives no?

Last edited by Yumsushi; 21st March 2012 at 07:50 PM.
  #176  
Old 21st March 2012, 08:14 PM
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If I remember correctly, ayaka didn't release any singles before her new album. She just promoted it a ton and it was her first release since the forced break. I'm guessing that Ayu is not as relevant in Japan as the idol groups but she is still a legend. I'm actually happy with the numbers because maybe it will decrease the pressure of always getting #1. I'll still be her fan and buy her music regardless.
  #177  
Old 21st March 2012, 08:19 PM
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GO AYU!!! DO ALL 26 INTERVIEWS X)
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  #178  
Old 21st March 2012, 08:45 PM
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Sorry, I don't think that not liking an aspect of a release makes the fans spoiled. For may people, buying an album means liking the whole package. The PVs represent images one often associates with the song, can give the song depth etc. Ayu used to have some of the best PVs and fans have the right to be disappointed and boycott the release if they feel that she didn't put in any effort. Its their money and their choice. You being happy with the album doesn't mean that you and everyone else share the same taste and thus should be satisfied. I personally am getting Cd only cause I don't care about the PVs but even then I'm not going to assume that others would be ok with such a choice.

I think the sales reflect that alot of people are unaware of the release and many of those that do are unhappy. Its up to her to take it from there. No one said she has to satisfy everyone, but obviously when your core fanbase is unhappy or indifferent, you have a big problem.
i agree with you actually. i think the sales reflect that lot of people don't even know about the album. no singles, no performances, etc... i think only fairly hardcore ayu fans would even know it was being released.
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  #179  
Old 21st March 2012, 08:49 PM
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Originally Posted by ohsixthirty View Post
ayu does what she wants. if she wants to work with these people, it is her decision (...) its not as if they have tricked her into working with them just for their own gain. ayu did it because she wanted to
Are you sure you can tell what she wants? Have you read her contract with Avex? Do you know each and every detail of her contractual obligations with Avex?

I wouldn't be that confident with this, Ohsixthirty. In the end no-one really knows what's going on behind the curtains =)
  #180  
Old 21st March 2012, 08:51 PM
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Actually #2 is really good for a female solo singer after 14 years career and she's not in her peak anymore.

I don't get why people should whining like that :/ just because you don't like that album, doesn't mean it's crap and it don't deserve to be #1. I don't want to complain about people who don't like it though, just for who made a huge drama about it.
It seems, she should release I am... copycats for the rest of her life .
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