We update with 10 new J-Pop songs once each month, on the day first day of each month.


RSS feed for our song reviews can be found at: https://jtop10.mymti.org/category/j-pop-song-reviews/feed


1. ゆず (Yuzu) – SEIMEI

Eric’s thoughts: The folk duo of Yūjin Kitagawa and Kōji Iwasawa are certainly not ones for overcomplicating things. The song uses a sparse amount of instrumentation in order to highlight the power that two musicians with just acoustic guitars, perfect harmonies and the occasional tambourine can have. Having cut their teeth being street musicians, this single captures their ability to sing to a single person and to a crowd all at once. 7/10

Download from iTunes: https://music.apple.com/jp/album/seimei-single/1459609902


2. BABYMETAL- Elevator Girl

Eric’s thoughts: I really loved Babymetal when they first came out, their singles challenged everything I love about metal and I was able to say that there was an idol group that I would definitely pay money to see. While to the casual listener it may sound like business as usual, something has changed. It may be that the group and songwriters are maturing, but this song with its jazz piano to double bass drums and back,  sounds more like something written by Shoji Meguro, the composer for the last few Persona titles, than the Babymetal we’re used to hearing. 7/10

Download from iTunes: https://music.apple.com/us/album/elevator-girl-single/1459698081


3. Shishamo – OH!

Eric’s thoughts: This all female trio from originally formed in Kawasaki keeps things fun and moving. While this song may not get your head banging, you’ll find it difficult if not impossible to not at least bob along to the beat. 8/10

Download from iTunes: https://itunes.apple.com/us/album/oh-single/1458069336


4. きゃりーぱみゅぱみゅ (Kyary Pamyu Pamyu) – きみがいいねくれたら (Kimi ga Ii Ne Kuretara)

Eric’s thoughts: The Queen of Kawaii is back. The style is immediately recognizable to even those with a passing knowledge of Kyary Pamyu Pamyu. The thumping bass is reminiscent of sugar fueled nights playing Dance Dance Revolution with a catchy 8bit style melody to accompany it. 8/10

Download from iTunes: https://itunes.apple.com/us/album/%E3%81%8D%E3%81%BF%E3%81%8C%E3%81%84%E3%81%84%E3%81%AD%E3%81%8F%E3%82%8C%E3%81%9F%E3%82%89-single/1459220817


5. KANA-BOON- まっさら (Massara)

Eric’s thoughts: I’m a sucker for when a song kicks off with a cymbal countdown. The guitar kicks in and drives us forward, but the group never sacrifices their groove. The chorus is so catchy, begging for the crowd to singalong. 8/10

Download from iTunes: https://music.apple.com/jp/album/e3-81-be-e3-81-a3-e3-81-95-e3-82-89-single/1459949089?l=en


6. ウルフルズ (Ulfuls) – センチメンタルフィーバー〜あなたが好きだから〜 (Sentimental Fever – Anata ga Suki Dakara)

Eric’s thoughts: Ulfuls is somewhat of a band in flux. The departure of guitarist Ulful Keisuke to work on his solo material would usually mean the end of a band until their return, but Ulfuls is continuing on as a trio in the meanwhile. This single is an awesome throwback to a late 70s boogie sound and I really dig the two different vocal styles going on. 8/10

Download from iTunes: https://music.apple.com/jp/album/sentimental-fever-single/1458338231


7. Homecomings – Cakes

Eric’s thoughts: This style of rock always reminds me of a soundtrack to a modern anime film, which is not a negative. Most ‘shonen anime rock’ is pretty much the same, while this sounds more like ‘slice of life rock’ with it’s maturity of sound and general coolness. 7/10

Download from iTunes: https://itunes.apple.com/us/album/cakes-ep/1458327771


8. 優河 (Yuga) – めぐる (Meguru)

Eric’s thoughts: I latched onto the vocals of this song immediately. I also love the mix of the instruments, as you can hear them all playing their parts distinctly and clearly. The song is bittersweet and melancholic, one I want revisit on vinyl, paired with a cup of black coffee and an open window. 9/10

Download from iTunes: https://music.apple.com/jp/album/gaze-ep/1461103884


9. COLOR CREATION – Butterfly

Eric’s thoughts: Color Creation is a boy band, and therefore will fall into the trappings of the style. But this is ballad is not bad by any means, and if you’re a fan of this genre you will definitely enjoy it, holding your glow sticks in the air all the while. 7/10

Download from iTunes: https://music.apple.com/jp/album/first-palette/1458471944


10. kolme – Deep Breath

Eric’s thoughts: This is group are described as a ‘self produced’ girl group. This means that the group rely on themselves to create the look, choreography, and sound, rather than using a big talent company. I love this idea, as it progresses the pop style and image of idol groups forward. The song has a super catchy r&b sound but still sounds unique to the group. 8/10

Download from iTunes: https://music.apple.com/us/album/deep-breath-single/1460791131