When it comes to LDH, it’s hard to keep up with their artists and talents as there are releases + news every month (guess why I’m always broke?) so to help me with this post I went and checked my Twitter archive + posts on forums + Tumblr. If there was something that you think was worth mentioning please let me know in the comments.
So, 2013 is almost coming to an end. Let me review how EXILE did this year:
Okay. So since HIRO-papa got married late 2012 (again, congrats on your marriage, HIRO-papa <3 love you. Wish you happiness PLEASE DON’T LEAVE US T.T), people have been saying he’ll retire soon and stuff. Being the lovely not-so-crazy delulu fan I am I kept denying it, saying that it’s “too early” for him to retire and let’s wait and see etc etc.
So in January this happened:
I’m pretty sure that was about the single announcement so let’s talk about it:
EXILE PRIDE ~Konna Sekai wo Aisuru Tame~
I really really love this song. It gives me similar feeling to when I listen to Each Other’s Way, Someday… you know, all those motivating songs. I don’t even know what the lyrics are about XD but the title has something about loving the world so it’s all good~ Whenever I listen to those songs I just feel so happy and I’m filled with positivity and hope~ I’m a moody person so these songs do miracles for me~~~ Heheheh I actually went ahead and read the lyrics. Yup my type of song <3
The first PV (document version) was good but I was disappointed coz I really love EXILE’s PVs and I wanted to see them dancing to the song. Also, I didn’t like how there was only one song on the single. Did that stop me from buying it? NO! Coz the release date was also the same as ATSUSHI’s solo DVD but we will talk about that in another post (hopefully). So I saved on shipping ^.^
So you can see how much I love this single. What added to my love is the amount of butthurt and pressed people getting mad that it kept popping on the chart and eventually sold a million (coz it was included in the premium fanclub ticket to EXILE PRIDE tour.) It actually (re)charted last month! lolololol
HIRO announces his retirement:
I believe that it was on the release date of EXILE PRIDE that HIRO-papa announced his retirement at the end of this year T__T When it was announced and the news began circulating on Twitter I just didn’t believe it and kept denying the whole thing (thankfully none of you can see my Twitter archive.) Then I saw the news on EXILE mobile and… I… I didn’t know what to feel about it. We all knew this day will come but despite all of that I was not prepared.
I will support him no matter what but I still think that his decision was made too early. Certainly he’s been in the industry for 25 years but I feel like he has more to offer. The fact that he’ll remain active behind the scenes takes a little bit from my bitterness but I can’t imagine EXILE performing on stage without him. I wonder how it will feel… I DON’T WANT TO IMAGINE IT.
Flower Song is a lovely song but not something I think EXILE should release as a single. But what do I know? Japanese fans totally LOVE IT! So do people who watched the drama 35-sai no Koukousei (Flower Song was the theme song.) According to ATSUSHI, who wrote the lyrics, the students in the drama are like flowers, there are times when they wither (winter) but then comes hope (spring) and they can bloom again so it kinda addresses the darkness in people and how to start over. The melody is sweet but also sad so it works well with the whole thing.
The PV strengthens the idea. It first starts in B&W with sad faces then begins to gain colors as you approach the end with the members slowly smiling. Also, the fact that HIRO-papa walks to the guys in the end OMG it just… invites you to cry T.T and that train… and setting… the more I think about it the more scenarios I make in my head. All of them result in me crying like a baby. THIS IS WHY I ONLY WATCHED THIS PV A COUPLE OF TIMES!
The B-side is ATSUSHI’s Real Valentine, which is a cover of a Chinese song by Jay Chou. A bittersweet love song that goes well with the single.
MATSU announces his engagement:
On July 22th, MATSU announced his engagement to a non-celebrity. If you know MATSU, you’ll also know that he’s a great man and I couldn’t be more happier for him <3 The man is an inspiration to all of us. Following his dream despite having an incurable disease and doing his best, always smiling on stage. A great personality, always able to draw a smile on my face and a great actor and comedian on top of it. There’s more to the man than I can ever write. You can never hate him because, even if you don’t like him or EXILE, you can still see how professional and committed he is to the group (I think this could be said for all the members.) I just love him so much I wanna give him a hug :*
Fans are speculating he’ll be the next member to retire from EXILE. The couple hasn’t decided on a marriage date but I feel like it’ll be announced soon, then after that who knows? Whatever decision he makes I’ll support him <3
We were introduced to No Limit in late May when Coca Cola Zero CM came out. Ever since then the song was stuck in my head and I was hoping EXILE will release it soon. I think they hyped the fact that the PV was shot in super slide moving cameras (that was used in Hollywood movies like Total Recall) more than the song itself XD I guess coz it had the deal with Coca Cola so it was already hyped.
What can I say about this song? I really love the lyrics (great because ATSUSHI) love the beat, love the techniques. The PV is too colorful but beautiful. It’s a perfect single for me. The only lazy job was the covers. Seriously guys? Oh and I LOVE the mobile bonus~
The b-side is Colorful Love by ATSUSHI. It’s a really lovely song because ATSUSHI can do no wrong.
EXILE PERFORMER BATTLE AUDITION:
On the final day of EXILE LIVE TOUR 2013 “EXILE PRIDE” it was announced that EXILE will be holding a PERFORMER battle audition. It was a shock. Of course it’s a shock. When was the last time EXILE hold a performer audition to add members to the group? NEVER! It was obvious from the poster/ad/whatever you call it here ===>>>>>>
that the winner will take HIRO’s spot as a performer (not sure if they’ll keep the members’ positions after this but you know what I mean.) So yeah it’s very big even my friend was questioning if they’re gonna really do it or just simply trolling XD
I already voiced my opinion about this. I think that there’s a high possibility a lot of LDH performers or those who are affiliated with the agency will compete for the spot so the winner might not be a new face… unless EXILE/HIRO are planning something different :| I mean, being a part of EXILE as a performer requires talent, dedication and a monstrous stamina, so choosing a rookie from the public is… crazy… I sincerely hope that doesn’t happen XD All we can do now is speculate on the matter, as nothing has been announced yet.
SHOKICHI opens official Twitter and Instagram accounts:
Well, this is a big deal so I have to write about it. EXILE aren’t really available on social networks, probably coz they want people to subscribe to EXILE mobile. However, with the opening of EXILE official FB page, USA’s Dance Earth Twitter and other LDH artists accounts. The whole agency is opening up to social media. This start with SHOKICHI is really nice. Even though he doesn’t really tweet (just posts his instagram pics) It’s good to know that the guys are considering the use of social media. I hope they interact with fans more in the future~
EXILE PRIDE ~Konna Sekai wo Aisuru Tame~ (Special Edition)
I believe that it was in July that the members went to New York. Then HIRO-papa updated his blog and said they went there to shoot a video. He also talked about his history with New York and how the city influenced him. We were all excited for the PV shot there. We had to wait 3 months before the special edition of EXILE PRIDE was announced and it contained PERFORMER’S PRIDE, the video we were all waiting for. If you haven’t watched it yet GO NOW! It’s epic, awesome and glorious! And if you think nothing can top it, well, think again! THE LIVE PERFORMANCE IS EVEN BETTER! omg omg omg the feels I had while watching it. AAAAAAAHHHH this is why I love EXILE; they always challenge themselves AND THEY DELIVER! Every year! They do this to me EVERY YEAR! I just can’t believe it :|
Of course, the DVD also contains the epic video of EXILE PRIDE. WATCH. IT. NOW! Just thinking about the beginning of the full PV makes me shiver. Wow guys you, like, didn’t have to look so serious o.o It was… really epic. Then they used all the settings in BURNING UP and HOT SHOT and I feel like they’re trying to mix the past with present. I don’t know. I’m not good at interpreting videos XP Oh yes and then 1000 PEOPLE DANCING TO THE SONG. Ahhhh I wanna see this on Kohaku T.T I wonder if they’re just gonna perform the song as usual or do something special. I can’t wait! Oh course, there’s the ending THE FREAKING ENDING! It makes me… cry like a baby. And then all that futuristic setting comes in and it kinda ruin the moment for me XD
EXILE LIVE TOUR 2013 "EXILE PRIDE":
This tweet is from last year when EXILE PRIDE live tour was first announced. I really wanna talk about the live itself in another post so I won’t talk a lot here but I have to say this: I usually finish EXILE concerts in one go or one day maximum. This live took me FIVE DAYS to watch it. A bit more to finish the documentary. It was too intense for me. It’s the ultimate EXILE concert (even though EXILE outdo themselves every year.) I loved everything about it. Lives are really one of EXILE’s strongest points. Very well-executed. And to think that it’s HIRO-papa’s last live T__T I really hope he trolls us and appear in next year’s live though XD I can totally see it happening. But still T__T
If I have to find something negative about it then it’s the fact that it isn’t the last day of the tour. You know, when everything awesome happened. But this also means the last day will get its own release which means I get to experience that amazing feeling when watching again! Plus all the other awesome stuff in the live. Plus I believe the release (if it ever comes out) will contain EXILE PRIDE 3 documentary or at least something similar to it. So I’m looking forward to all of that. TAKE MY MONEY EXILE!
Overall, 2013 was a great year for EXILE. While the singles were good in my opinion there wasn’t anything I would call an “EXILE Classic” except for EXILE PRIDE maybe~ Overall, I’m happy with this year but for next year I’d like them to focus more on the music side with a little more experimentation, you could say? Not really experimentation coz I hate that word XP but they should do something different. Also I wish they would guest on variety shows more. I kinda miss seeing the guys all in one place, not performing just talking and being themselves. AND I NEED A NEW EXILE SHOW LIKE EXILE GENERATION! MAKE IT HAPPEN!
That’s it. Tell me what do you think of EXILE this year? ^.^