If I do not write this article, I might literally lose my mind with insanity due to this group and their first major album.
The group as you can see in the title is Wa-Suta or The World Standard in English. They are under iDol Street which is managed by Avex Music. Other artists included in iDol Street include the Super Girls, Cheeky Parade, GEM, and the local streets themselves. I felt like I left one out.
The group Wa-Suta was first announced in March 2015, but their first live appearance came at the iDOl Street Carnival 2015 on April 29th, 2015. I had a chance to attend that event but decided not to which I somewhat regret to this day.
They have grown since their debut and they are looking to take on the whole world. In my opinion, they are still underrated and have blown many fans away with their music and performances, so kudos to the management and the members of Wa-Suta themselves.
I first saw the debut of this group when I was following one of the other groups, GEM, to be exact. They had usually a weekly YouTube episode that showcased behind the scenes moments of the group. I noticed one day that they had a new video on the iDol Street channel that had a different name to it so I gave it a watch and enjoyed what I saw. They were so adorable and very talented but relatively new to the scene as idols which was just fine by my standards.
I kind of put them on the back burner until I saw that they were releasing their first major debut album on May 4th, 2016. They were going to be releasing it in 110 countries, which was pretty cool. At that time, I knew I was going to be in Tokyo so I waited until the release to buy it. Well technically, I waited a couple of weeks and then went to Tower Records in Shibuya to find the album. I searched and searched to no avail. I realized there was a HMV & Books nearby. I wandered over there and got to their idol section and noticed the display with the group and many a CD on the rack too. I started to listen to the preview and really enjoyed it. I listened to the three songs that you were allowed to listen to before I made my decision. I had two choices: I could get the regular edition which was $25 USD or I could get the extra special looking one, which came with a mini house and character figures of the members plus the CD and DVD of a concert of theirs. The second one would've set me back $80 USD. I chose the regular edition because I really didn't need all the trimmings of the large album, no offence.
As soon as I got back home I placed the album in my laptop to give it a little more attention than I had and I was really shocked and awed with how well the album was put together. The vocals were strong throughout and the composition of each song made it really awesome. So again, kudos.
Without further ado, let me introduce you to the members. Each member is color coded as with most iDol Street and Avex artists. Wa-Sutas' colors are a bit different because they are not bright colors but pastel ones. I have chosen a favorite member from the get-go, so you should read further and see who that would be.
Name: Hazuki Sakamoto
Birthdate: September 9th, 1998
Color: Pastel Yellow
Name: Nanase Hirokawa
Birthdate: May 12th, 1999
Color: Pastel Green
Name: Miri Matsuda
Birthdate: August 2nd, 1999
Color: Pastel Purple
Fun Fact: Miri is my oshi
Name: Ririka Kodama
Birthdate: October 1st, 2000
Color: Pastel Blue
Name: Ruka Mishina
Birthdate: March 17th, 2001
Color: Pastel Pink
When it comes to vocals, Ruka and Nanase are the lead singers of the group.
Wa-Suta has only released one album that I will discuss below the video section.
May 4th, 2016 - The World Standard
The first video I will drop is the first track to their album titled, Uru Tora Mira Kurukuru Fu Ainaru Arutimettochoko Bi Mu. What a title.
As you can tell by the music video, the song is extremely catchy. I am glad it has English lyrics on screen but I wouldn't have minded if it didn't. I won't go into extreme length about the video but I like the concept.
Here is the behind the scenes of the video shoot.
I love behind the scenes videos, especially to get to know the members better. You get to see their characters shine and choose your favorite if you haven't already.
A couple of other videos are LIVE versions. I will not place them in here, so if you want to watch them, you can on the official YouTube page. I usually only like placing the actual MV which is more interesting to watch, you could say.
The third and fourth video I will share is the MV and behind the scenes video for Inu Neko, Seishun Massakari.
I like this video as well because it showcases the cuteness of the members again as well as a fun song to listen to.
I will link another video as well. This video is from one of their PR events and showcases the members with MakoMina. MakoMina came up with some choreography for this song and is actually quite fun to do if you don't mind embarrassing yourself.
Those are the videos I suggest until more come out. So until then continue to sit tight as we move onto the album review.
The World Standard album consists of 11 tracks total if you get the regular edition and only ten if you get the special one.
Again, these are my opinions.
As I mentioned earlier the first track is Uru Tora Mira Kurukuru Fu Ainaru Arutimettochoko Bi Mu. I find this song to be completely addicting and really fun to jam to when you are around other people. I love the fact that they have spoken word lyrics which are ultra funny to listen to. I like the Excali-Nyan part the best.I also like the out of date jokes they have in the song. Also I get loads of laughs with the Abracadabra part. I also like the tempo of the song and it has the techno-ish rock beat during the interludes which really take the song up the notch and I am pretty sure that those chords are my favorite part.
The second track is called, Doki Doki Today. I really like the uptempo pace for this song. It has a little bit of a electronic feel for it and then it hits you with strong vocals which lead you to the bridge and finish at the chorus. To me this song seems like a quintessential iDol Street song. I can see any of the groups performing this song but I believe that Wa-Suta pulled it off quite well. It has a great beat that you can bob your head along to.
The next track is Wandafuru World. This song has a fantastic tempo. I know I talk a lot about song tempo but I believe it is important if you want to enjoy a song. This song has a great electronic vibe to it that sticks out very well against the great drops and fantastic vocals by the group. This song can have you jamming for a while with no interruption. The lead up into the second chorus really hits me pretty good with the feels.
The fourth track is titled, Sukina Hito Toka Imasu Ka. This track is one of three that have a pretty good Latin flair to them. In this songs case, it has more of a techno feel than the second that I will share. I like the pace and the vocals are really great too. This is a song that if you wanted to, you could pass over. To me, this is a pretty alright track for this album. You have ups and downs and this is in the middle. There is one highlight and that is the high notes being hit about a little over halfway through.
The fifth track is titled, Zili Zili Love. This songs starts off with catchy piano and goes into a really high-paced song that is hard to keep up to but I really like it. I would expect to hear this in a cabaret club form a ska band. The beat in the song is paired perfectly with the orchestral electronic in the background at some points. This song plays to the members strengths. The vocals are really strong which is a very strong point. Over halfway through it goes into a crazy piano solo followed by a nice beat drop with a music box playing in the back then right back to the high tempo.
Track number six would be Ran Ran Jidai. As like track number four this one has a little flair to it as well. It is pretty high paced with great vocals being spread throughout. The chorus is pretty fun to try to sing in your vehicle or in person. The latin guitar in the background pairs well with this song. I have to admit that this song sounds really familiar with the first Juice=Juice song I listened to. I like the guitar solo halfway through and then back to the fast vocals. It has some very fantastic characteristics. I like the beat and it gets you in a groove if you are feeling down or unmotivated to work.
The seventh track on the Wa-Suta album would be NikoNiko Hanbuko. This song brings you back to the idol world with the Beatles' rock in the background into a fantastic fairy like beat that plays off of the vocals really well. The buildup to the chorus is pretty fantastic as well. The song gets really jammin' whenever it goes into a fantastic guitar solo. As usual, solo instrumentals are followed by solo vocals into the chorus again. I really enjoy the beat once again. This is another song that you could listen to on a road trip or if you need a pick-me-up if the previous one didn't do the job.
For the eighth track on the album, Suikawari, or Watermelon in English is presented in glorious fashion. This track is the third of the Latin flair variety and it doesn't disappoint by any means. This one outshines the previous two. No joke. I really like the songs like these from idols. The tempo is so perfect and the lyrics are pretty outstanding. It makes you want to just get up and dance. I really enjoy listening to this as I'm driving down the road trying to keep my eyes on it. I can not describe how I feel when I listen to this song. They did a really fantastic job with this song. I want to go to a beach now or have a watermelon. I love me some watermelon.
The ninth track kind of hits home for me and that track is called, Chiisana Chiisana. The reason why I said that is the way it sounds a little like a country song. When idols go this route I can't help but enjoy it. It has a great beat and lovely vocals with banjo and the strumming of an acoustic guitar playing in the background. Believe me, as a Oklahoman, hearing banjo in a idol song brings me back home. The vocals are very soft and enjoyable to listen to leading up to the fast paced bridge and chorus. This song gives me the chills up and down my arms because if the western feel. I thank Wa-Suta for releasing a song like this, This song also features one of my favorite parts of idol music and that would be the vocals with light background music. The lyrics at the end reassure me,
"Everything's gonna be alright,
everything's going to be okay."
Track number ten is titled Inu Neko, Seishun Massakari and is the second music video I displayed above. This song overpowers you with the rock vibe and the high paced that you can jam to it. I love the lyrics to this song. I like that they hit you hard with the descriptions of which one do you like. Personally, I like cheesecake. This song greatly plays to their strengths as well. Which one do you like? As for me, I'm both a cat and dog person. This song is very fun to listen to if you are having a rough go of it. I literally have listened to this song more times then you should know about. I constantly have it on replay if I get a chance. Now imagine the video of the dance to it and try that at work when no one is watching. Pretty funny, right? Now imagine getting caught doing the dance. Now that is embarrassing but you shouldn't mind it because that is who you are.
The final track on the album is titled Ima wa Mukashi. This track is technically a bonus track for us regular edition people. The album really didn't contain a slow song until this track. I like the organ that plays in the background and of course the vocals are on par as well. It has like a twinkling electro thing in the background that pairs really well with the other instruments that are brought in throughout the song. I am glad they saved this song as a bonus track. These kind of tracks usually never disappoint and this one is no exception.
Wa-Suta really pulled out all the stops on this album. They did it very exquisite and I gladly thank them.
I look forward to more material from this group in the future as my money will more than likely go out of my wallet to support yet another group.
I really hope you like this group and get to learn and watch more of them as well. Also, purchase the album at these lovely places:
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And as always. no matter where you are, have a fantastic day!!!