Me review on NekoPOP

I reviewed Jin Akanishi’s full-length album Me, released this past summer, for NekoPOP.


Akanishi opens with the sweet “Let Me Talk To U”. The child’s voice in the beginning is a reminder that this party guy is a family man too, and the inclusion of banjo gives the song a homey feel. The next song, “Good Time”, makes a perfect summer party anthem with its catchy beat and cheerful lyrics. “Miss California” is an instance where Akanishi has clearly been listening to a lot of American Top 40.  The whistling and guitars resemble the intro to Maroon 5’s “Moves Like Jagger”.

Click here to read the rest.

Listening to:
“Let Me Talk to U” by Jin Akanishi

Me / Jin Akanishi
Jin Akanishi

Anna Tsuchiya interview on NekoPOP

After Anime Matsuri, I had the pleasure of interviewing Anna Tsuchiya about her show and future plans.

When you put on the fan’s “yankii” jacket, how did you feel revisiting a character (Ichiko from Kamikaze Girls) whom you played over 10 years ago?

Anna Tsuchiya: I was genuinely happy! I hope to create more long-loved works that will stay in fans’ hearts after ten years.

What made you choose more upbeat songs for your set?

Anna Tsuchiya: Since this was an event, I wanted to have fun and get excited with everyone. Also I made this set list mainly with my songs that overseas fans know (NANA‘s theme songs and the latest single “LUCIFER”).

NekoPOP-Anna Tsuchiya-Anime Matsuri2014-3

Click here to read the rest of the interview. Photo is from the concert live report.

Listening to: “Change you life” by Anna Tsuchiya

Anna Tsuchiya Anime Matsuri 2015 live report at NekoPOP

Here’s another article from last month’s Anime Matsuri.  The con had Anna Tsuchiya as its headliner, and I got to cover her concert for NekoPOP.

The first couple of hazy guitar riffs drifted into the crowd, which grew excited with recognition. These were the first notes to Anna Tsuchiya’s most well-known hit, “rose” from the NANA anime series. For years, Anna won over American fans on the silver screen as the tough-talking yankii, Ichiko Shirayuri, in Kamikaze Girls, in the pages of fashion magazines, and through her music.

Click here to read the rest of the report.

Listening to: “Shout in the rain” by Anna Tsuchiya

Lucifer / Anna Tsuchiya
Anna Tsuchiya

Sayaka Sasaki interview at NekoPOP

Akemashite omedetou! I took a short break during December and am now ready to tackle my year-end recaps.  Before that, I would like to share an interview I recently did with Sayaka Sasaki.  She will be performing in Las Vegas on January 16 and 17 as part of the ANISONG World Tour – Lantis Festival.

What made you decide to compete in the Anison Grand Prix?

Sayaka Sasaki: It’s very rare to have a competition that promises the winner will have a major debut as an Anisong singer. However, this competition kept its promises with the winner of the 1st and 2nd competitions actually making major debuts. So I put my whole trust in it. I remember thinking that this was the biggest opportunity I’d ever have to reach my dream.

Click here to read the rest.

Listening to: “Junction heart” by Sayaka Sasaki

U review at NekoPOP

In 2011, Yu Shirota decided to make his debut in the J-pop world as U… with an EP titled U.  (If that wasn’t confusing enough, there’s also song called “U”.)  I decided to do a retro review of it for NekoPOP.

The EP starts off strong with “Sisyphus”. U’s powerful voice rises above the prominent rhythm. He draws out notes in anguish while the guitar adds a Latin flavor, heightening the drama.

Click here to read the rest.

Listening to: “Worth Fighting For” by U feat. Howie D