We now have a PV for Lady Mermaid, the upcoming single from Dialady, the new Satoumi group in Hello! Project. Dialady features C-ute member Suzuki Airi and Berryz Koubou member Sugaya Risako, singing a rockabilly-style duet. You can check out the PV on the Satoyama Youtube channel here!
The Satoyama thing is a blessing and a curse all at once – the Satoyama Life show bored me to tears, and the first round of groups really did nothing for me aside from DIY<3’s Forest. These new Satoumi groups were announced and I hardly paid attention to it, until I became aquainted with Dialady’s Lady Mermaid.
I thought I knew exactly what I was headed into – I’m a big fan of Airi, she’s one of my top 5 Hello! Project members. Risako, unfortunately has historically landed near the bottom for me and mostly because a few years ago, her voice just was not pleasant at all. Distinctive, yes, but not good. There were Berryz songs that I liked that I would have loved if it weren’t for her hurting my ears. Airi, on the other hand, sings like a heavenly handmaiden (I don’t know what that is, but for the sake of my point, let’s assume it’s quite lovely!).
Here’s where it gets interesting for me – It’s not Airi’s voice that makes this song. It’s Risako’s. It’s that distinctive quality to her voice that does it, and she actually rocks it. She’s on key and doesn’t make me wince, and kicks all kinds of ass. Angel-on-high Airi is no slouch either, of course – her vocals are strong and as incredible as they always are, and she is easily the more skilled vocalist (indeed, she’s probably the best in current H!P). But it’s Risako that makes this song stand out vocally, for being different.
Lady Mermaid purports to be a Rockabilly song, not sure if that’s what it is, but it’s definitely fun and has a bit of a 50’s feel to it, between the song style and the diner scenes in the PV. It might have a touch of a rock edge to it, but it’s most definitely pop… Just not quite typical pop. I can’t think of any songs to really compare it to, but if you like to try different styles of idol pop, give it a listen. It’s fun, and the duelling vocals are different enough to keep me interested.
The whole duet group thing has been done over and over in H!P, with varying degrees of awesomeness. Some that come to mind are W and GAM (loved them both), and one-shot songs like Kanashiki Heaven with Airi and Chisato (awesome), and Daisuki Dakara Zettai Yurusanai with Riho and Sakura (this song got a lot of internet hate, but I loved it). As far as groupings I didn’t like, Peaberry was not so great, and Rainbow Pink was annoying. Don’t even get me started on Kira*Pika either (DEATHWISHES). Dialady comes out a winner though.
Airi and Risako make it on the good list of duets for me vocally because they stand out from each other. However, one point where they are much weaker than, say, GAM and W, is their chemistry. With GAM and W, we had lots of interaction between the two members, but Dialady seems to be the opposite. They’re singing the same song, but the only interaction is right by the end of the PV (even then, they’re practically on opposite sides of the screen). For the most part they’re dancing next to each other, but without any real chemistry or interaction. I’m not saying they need to practically make out ala GAM
(though it wouldn’t hurt XD), but some sort of hint that they’re in a group together, and not just two soloists singing next to each other, would be beneficial.
That one complaint aside, this is a better than typical PV for Hello! Project. Both girls look gorgeous and work the camera (and the mics). Airi looks damn good in her strapless and is just flawless on the whole. The girl is the whole idol package for me, she sings amazing, she’s both cute and sexy, she can dance, and she has charisma. Risako surprises me again in this department, because lately I’ve been very unimpressed with her in PVs, but she pulls this off well! Her two hair styles are much more flattering than what she’s been doing in PVs like Golden Chinatown, and she looks great in her black dress. Her and Airi have completely different body types – Risako is fuller figured, more the bombshell type, whereas Airi is very slender – but standing next to each other they both look lovely, the contrast doesn’t make either look bad.
Dialady has a lot going for them – good, memorable vocals, an interesting style of song, and charismatic performances by both members. I enjoyed this and have more of an appreciation for Risako! Go figure! So… Maybe Satoumi won’t be so bad afterall. :)