NEWS – 恋のABO [11th Single]

May 6, 2009 at 7:59 pm (NEWS) (, )

koi-no-abo

NEWS’ 11th single, entitled 恋のABO, was released on 04.29.09. The title track was used as the new RUSS-K CM song. Unlike many of their previous singles, this single comes with a DVD.

恋のABO has the boys taking on a 80s dance style to get the crowd dancing. The song begins with that hot dance sound and then Koyama saying a line before the group moves into the hook. They basically repeat the title a few times and then it’s the first verse. Koyama is up first and his vocals are very good here, giving personality and attitude for everyone to hear. It’s pretty fun when the guys call out “hey A!” or “hey B!” because it gives the song that extra bit of magic. Ryo is then next and the tone of his vocals are perfect since they naturally give a cool vibe. Everyone comes together on the chorus and it surprised me to hear Koyama have such a voice so it’s good that he’s getting his chance to shine. That last line of the chorus is sung with great vocals. Massu sounds awesome as always and that kind of low tone to his voice helps capture a sort of sexual atmosphere which the song gives off. Shige does a good job on his part too although at some points he sounds a bit strange. As usual, Tegoshi is given his own verse and he belts out his notes unlike anyone else. It’s very obvious why he’s given those solo parts because he can deliver in his special way. The song closes with the hook again followed by Tegoshi giving one more great vocal to really stay on the listener’s mind. It’s a great upbeat tune that the boys bring to life.

ラビリンス is the B-side on both editions of the single. Opening the song is an absolutely gorgeous instrumentation, highlighted by the sounds of the Spanish guitar, reminiscent of one of the group’s best songs, 愛のマタドール.  Then comes the first verse and Koyama sounds extremely good and the combination of the rapidity and the slightly whispering effect he gives makes him sound very sexy, catching the listener’s ear. Yamapi holds his own as well while the music continues to sound addictive. That first word of the chorus stands out perfectly and they continue with strength. It’s that Spanish guitar though that remains unforgettable. Just like Koyama, Tegoshi gives the same sexual energy that just makes him shine. That pure instrumental section is amazing, just sounding so awe-inspiring and pretty that the listener can’t not love it. This song is actually probably better than the A-side and it would have been a perfect double A-side.

OPEN YOUR EYES is the B-side present on the limited edition of the single. Enter the sounds of the Wild West, if not only mildly. The song starts off with a cool sound and slowly an older Western styled instrumentation enters, giving an element of mystery. Then the first verse starts and it’s strange not hearing Koyama begin off but Ryo does a good job nonetheless. Tegoshi follows and as usual, he carries that cool element perfectly. The chorus kind of shifts gears and has a more cute feeling to it so it doesn’t fit as well it should have. I like that Massu was given the solo third verse and he shines perfectly on it. It wouldn’t be complete without stellar vocals from Tegoshi near the end. OPEN YOUR EYES is a nice song but not as good as the first two.

The Live version of SHARE is also included on the limited edition of the single. We all should give these guys credit because they hand in writing and composing the songs themselves so that’s something they should be proud of. A very pretty piano starts the song off and soon the beat comes in and gives a more happy and upbeat feeling. Overall, it’s definitely the weakest song on the album and doesn’t particularly have any moment of climax. Everyone sounds nice but the music isn’t particularly capturing.

In order to promote the single, a PV for 恋のABO was made. Well…what can I say about this PV…it was certainly interesting. First, the dancing was pretty weak. They could have channeled the 80s style and give more intricate choreography. Second, I suppose the crowd of people is nice for the whole club scene but I think Johnny’s PVs are better with just the guys…or at least no girls. Summing up the guys, there wasn’t that much to be impessed with. Shige made strange faces, Yamapi had ugly hair (seriously, it was extremely distracting), Ryo looked weird, Koyama actually looked pretty good and normal, Tegoshi was…Tegoshi and Massu was adorable. Also, the camera angles were very strange and kind of ruined the video.

Single Ranking: A

After a somewhat disappointing studio album, NEWS stepped up their game. The first two tracks are absolutely stellar. 恋のABO features those cool 80s disco sounds to dance to and ラビリンス takes on those Spanish elements that make Johnny’s groups sound amazing. Hopefully they’ll be able to follow suit with such good material and they will be more active than they have been this year so far.

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3 Comments

  1. hyperballad said,

    oh yeah NEWS~ yamapi haha~

    i like their Happy Birthday~

  2. dragonrider said,

    I enjoyed reading your review, it was very enlightening and made me appreciate NEWS’ new single more.

    Note – I’m pretty sure that Massu is the first to sing in Labyrinth (no surprise that the start sounds so good). It sounds like Koyama doesn’t come in until a bit later, dueting partly with Yamapi before the chorus.

  3. amaiyume said,

    Thanks! I’m glad you enjoyed the review 🙂

    As for the Massu and Koyama thing, do you mean on the first verse? I just checked the video and the order goes Koyama -> Ryo -> Yamapi -> Massu -> Shige -> chorus

    Here’s proof from a live performance where it’s easier to see who’s singing

    They do have similar voices though so sometimes it might be hard to tell who’s who…but I guess you just get an ear for it after listening to them for so long 🙂

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