So this is what TGS has been doing for all these months! I was wondering where they'd gone! I really need to start keeping up with the news... I guess with all the other new releases and the lack of activity from them I just forgot! My reaction to Tsuioku was so lukewarm I decided to divert my attention to other more interesting song and return to TGS when they did something that would catch my eye again! Then I found out they were going on a kinda-sorta-but-not-really hiatus where they would spend time working and improving their vocals, dance skills, and other stuff idols work on. A few months went by before I found out that the reason behind all this preparation was that TGS was going to perform at Budokan! I don't know much about Budokan, other than it's pretty big so I assume this must be a rather large achievement for the group! To commemorate this feat, they're releasing a single titled Road to 12.22 Budokan in October! And that was pretty much all the info I got about them. I knew they performed a SweetS song but other than that I didn't hear much about them until now! I discovered the PV Bad Flower, one of the tracks on this Budokan single, had just been released! Now this was a happy surprise for me as it was the first new thing I'd heard from TGS in awhile. So how do they sound after all that mystical training they did in the far-off land of Avex? Did all that training have an effect on their performance and talent level at all?
Hell yeah! It totally paid off!
They sound so much better and I didn't even think that was possible! The biggest improvement I noticed was Hitomi. She'd always been one of the main singers for TGS and I've always thought her voice was decent but Ayano's and Mei's far better in comparison. My main problem was at times she sounded just a little too squeaky (then again, she's what? Thirteen, fourteen?). But oh my god, it's like aliens stole her voice box and replaced it with someone else's! Hitomi's voice is much deeper in this song and she has a ton of power behind the notes, almost as much as Ayano does! Speaking of Ayano, once again her voice rocks in this PV but she doesn't get as much time to shine as Hitomi does. Hitomi was definitely lead for this song with Ayano minoring and some solos from Yuri and Mei thrown around in the song! Poor Miyu, I think she got like one solo in this entire song... but at least she got some duets! The deep, powerful vocals work extremely well with the song! Like the title suggests, Bad Flower is pretty Badass. It's one of the more rockish and darker songs from TGS, still maintaining that Avex style they have. There's a lot of guitar and percussion in it, giving the song a lot of volume and a lot of punch! It's not full-on hard rock, or even rock, but it's still one of the most hardcore songs I've heard from TGS! It makes me excited to hear what other songs are going to be on this Budokan single! It's definitely a step-up from Tsuioku and I'm glad TGS is back to bless us with more dark and edgy music!
So is the PV more interesting than Tsuioku? I hope so!
What a lovely background to begin this lovely PV!
BWAH! Don't scare me like that TGS! I thought you were the Grim Reaper times five!
Is that the I Dream of Jeannie dance?
I can't tell if I think this dance move is cool or kind of silly.
Ooh, cards! Are we playing Crazy 8s? Because that's the only card game I know...
I guess we're playing the TGS card game! So how does that exactly work?
Am I in hell already?
How old is Hitomi again? I feel awkward saying she looks somewhat... physically attractive in this PV.
Awww, they look like they're giving hugs to invisible people! Do you guys want hugs?
I guess they don't want hugs after all...
TGS always has some of the coolest formations; I could screencap them all day!
I can't tell if Yuri looks adorable or scared out of her mind in this shot...
Well, at least I can tell Mei looks possessed in this shot!
I think this is what Batman would look like if turned into a ballet
By the way, cool set for the close-ups! The old "empty dangling frames" cliche never gets old for me!
Hey look! A title drop!
This is like the sexually repressed version of that move in C-ute's new PV where Nakky gropes Maimi!
Cool, the pictures move! Wait a minute... are we in the Harry Potter universe now?
Geez, who stabbed picture!Ayano?
Just call them Dracula's Little Helpers!
The eyes... it's like they're staring into my soul O_O
I know Fairies is the Avex group known for its dancing but holy shit TGS are awesome dancers.
I'm all for a ring-around-the-Ayano!
I feel like I barely see Miyu in this PV...
Wow, someone's sure got it out for TGS!
Those sure are some snazzy leather jackets! But they don't really match up with those flowy skirts...
More eyes!? Stop it! You're creeping me out!
If you need me, I'll be hiding under my bed.
I wonder if they stole curtains from Party City to make those skirts...
So after watching the entire PV, I have just one question: why the hell was this not released in October?
I mean, it's a perfect Halloween PV. It's got dark lighting, dark costumes, dark everything! Why would Avex release it in August, the hottest and most unpleasantly summery month of the year? I think I'd like this PV more if it were released during a time where I'm not sweating and cursing the sun. That and I really want Halloween to get here soon... go away summer! But wow this PV was dark. I mean that literally speaking, I can barely see their faces in the dance shot! It's not surprising to see TGS maintaining their more serious, mature style but this PV was still a much darker, almost Gothic PV for them. If you're not a fan of this darker, more serious style of imagery then you're probably not going to like this (or most of TGS's recent discography). For me, I enjoyed the music video! There's nothing particularly new or innovative about it but as someone who often enjoys this sort of PV, naturally I enjoyed this one too! What really sold me on the PV was the dance; it's one of the best I've seen from TGS with a lot of formations, the frequent use of costumes, and the dance suitably matching up with the song. When I first saw the outfits I was a little on the fence about if they'd work for the PV what with the leather jackets and flowy black skirts not exactly going together but when in motion they look amazing. The skirts are especially used a lot in the PV with the dance moves making the girls looks like bats! Very pretty bats who happen to be idols... There are also a few random images thrown around in the PV like the random eye shots that were slightly creepy and the card close-ups that don't add much to the PV except some more dark imagery.
However, it's a little boring. Granted the shots we do see are very well done but the PV itself is nothing more than a dance shot, a few interesting close-ups, and some playing cards. There's no storyline or hidden symbolism just TGS being kinda creepy. The problem with dark PVs like this one is they give little opportunity for the girls to rely on their personalities to keep the video entertaining. That's often what saves most idol PVs from being a complete bore so how does TGS hold up without that advantage? I admit, the dark imagery gets a little repetitive after awhile and I wish they could something else in the PV besides stand around looking Gothic and pretty. Then again, I'm sure some of their creepier fans will be very... entertained by the physical attractiveness of the girls in the PV... if you know what I mean. Okay, this is getting awkward, ANYWAYS. There may be some hidden meaning behind the cards and the empty frames but whatever that is got lost on me. I'm probably asking too much considering most idol groups don't exactly have captivating and intricate plots to go with their music videos. I guess I've been too spoiled by all those AKB48 PVs! Storyline of no storyline, if you're a fan of the group, I think you'll enjoy this PV. It's not exactly mind-blowingly new from a group like TGS but the rockish song and the PV's dark vibes make it visually interesting, if somewhat lacking in terms of substance. The girls look amazing, the dance is one of the best I've seen this year, and I can't wait to hear the other songs on this Road to Budokan single!
But seriously, I want October to get here. NOW.