Tegomass – Miso Soup

by oroitsme on July 20, 2007 · 9 comments · AddThis

Tegomass
Tegomass, L-R: Tegoshi Yuya, Masuda Takahisa
Artist: Tegomass
Product Code: JECN-120/122
Release Date: 2006.12.20
Highest Ranking: #1
Label: Johnny’s Entertainment
Limited Edition: Photo booklet, DVD

Johnny’s Entertainment had always had many of its popular singles written by Swedish songwriters. After Seishun Amigo by Shuuji to Akira became a major success in Japan and also a minor hit in Sweden, the company decided to promote itself more overseas. Tegomass was formed to promote Johnny’s Entertainment internationally. In November of 2006, they held a press conference for both reporters and fans, and released a single, Miso Soup, written by Swedish songwriters and sung completely in English. The single debuted at a surprisingly high #12 on the Swedish charts and enjoyed a bit of overseas publicity.

Tegomass consists of Johnny’s Entertainment band NEWS members Tegoshi Yuya and Masuda Takahisa. Even amongst NEWS, they were considered two of the group’s best singers and often had solo parts in singles and duets during concerts. A month after their Swedish debut, they also debuted in Japan as テゴマス (Tegomasu). They released the Japanese Miso Soup single in two formats, a regular and a limited CD+DVD. The limited edition contained a 3-page, 6-sided jacket booklet, while the regular contained an extra track and the title song’s original karaoke.

 

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1. Miso Soup

This is the Japanese version of the same song that had been released in Sweden. The song starts off with an accordion intro, setting off a melody that sounds like a holiday or children’s song. Indeed, the lyrics fit with that aspect, as Tegoshi and Masuda sing about a mother’s love, shown through their care, subtle gestures, letters, and – what else? – their homemade miso soup.

The PV narrates this by showing Tegoshi and Masuda living by themselves in a supposedly foreign country, getting letters and instant food, and reminiscing about their mothers. And, as standard in most Johnny’s Entertainment PVs, there’s Tegomass singing and smiling as the camera zooms onto them for simple but beautiful shots.

The song shows off their individual voices as well as their harmonizing. However, despite their singing, I found the song mediocre – the melody was repetitive and although somewhat catchy, it was more catchy in the way of an annoying commercial jingle than a mainstream hit. (Subsequently, in 2007, it was used in a commercial for – don’t be too shocked now – miso soup.) It didn’t seem like singing about a mother’s love shown through food – especially with such a childish melody – would serve to be a smart release in mainstream music. The song has good vocals and production, but is lacking compared to Tegomass’ other works.

Rating: ★★★☆☆

 

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2. Hajimete no Asa

The second track translates to A New Morning and is a midtempo ballad. It’s a strong display of the depth and tone of their voices, displayed through both solos and harmonizing, with both Tegoshi and Masuda taking up the melody at times. The instrumental itself starts out majestically, drops to simple piano and percussion, then like a sunrise becomes more complex and layered with orchestral strains. I thought Hajimete no Asa was a much better song than Miso Soup, both in displaying their voices and the composition.

Rating: ★★★★★

 

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3. Chocolate

Chocolate is jazzy, more fast-tempoed song. There’s interesting new-age sounding accents and percussion – I think I hear bongos. The song has interesting sound and some nice touches, like a small beat change in the middle of the song, jazz instruments, and female background vocals. It’s a fun but sophisticated song, and definitely something more unique in a Jpop release.

Rating: ★★★★½

 

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4. Sunadokei

Sunadokei (hourglass) is the extra track on the Regular Edition single – which probably was probably a ploy for fans to buy both the limited and regular editions, because it’s arguably one of Tegomass’ best songs. It had been one of Tegomass’ duets during previous NEWS concerts, and had been performed by Tegoshi as a solo on national television before appearing on this single. It’s a beautiful ballad with orchestral strings, guitar, and ambient percussion that all become more and more layered, as Tegomass’s voices range from soft and light singing into rich harmonies, and perfectly convey the pain of trying to stop time towards a fading love.

Rating: ★★★★★

 

Conclusion

This single contains some wonderful songs, but had one of the more lacking songs as its title track. Miso Soup was good in generating publicity from its Swedish debut, connection to Swedish songwriters, and its unique subject. The title song does do a good job as a debut single by showcasing their vocal abilities and gaining publicity. However, what really shine on this single are the B-sides, which are some of Tegomass’ best songs. Musically, it is excellent, high quality, and definitely worth a listen.

Overall Rating: ★★★★½

 

Regular Edition
Regular Edition

Limited Edition
Limited Edition

CD Tracklist

  1. Miso Soup
  2. Hajimete no Asa
  3. Chocolate
  4. Sunadokei *
  5. Miso Soup (Original Karaoke) *

* Only available on regular edition

DVD Tracklist

  1. Miso Soup PV
  2. Miso Soup (Making of)

Purchase this item: YesAsia US | YesAsia Global

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About the author

oroitsme loves Japanese music and loves writing about them, both here and at her other blog, She likes a variety of j-pop, from Johnny's like NEWS and Arashi to female artists like Otsuka Ai and Perfume to rock bands like chatmonchy and a picking of everything in between, and hopes you can enjoy them with her.

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International Wota » Blog Archive » [Blogs] Channel-Ai Reviews Tegomass UNITED STATES
July 21, 2007 at 1:02 am

{ 8 comments… read them below or add one }

NANA January 23, 2009 at 6:48 am

This clip is a very wonderful. Tegoshi has appeared in this clip very CUTE, I love Tego tooooooo much..(♥_♥)

Reply

aprikotpjoy AUSTRALIA July 2, 2008 at 3:36 am

Makes me want to eat miso soup even though i haven’t tasted it yet!! Yuya and massu are a good pair!! Nice voice blending and both are cute too!! Kawaii!!!!

Reply

etteduOL AUSTRALIA April 21, 2008 at 1:21 pm

waw.. tego is sooo sooo cute!

i really love tegomass… C:

miso soup!^^

Reply

makkin and sayaka SWEDEN December 16, 2007 at 7:33 pm

We looked for this CD at Sweden because we hered that they were quiet popular at Sweden.. …But we could not find it…..Are they really famous???

Reply

camr_jemr September 7, 2007 at 1:10 pm

i saw at Lj that yuya change his hair style!!! he dyed his hair blond and for me he look like kim jeung hoon ( when kim jeung hoon is in princess hours….. prince yul……) he..he…he…

Reply

se PHILIPPINES August 23, 2007 at 7:06 am

Yuya is so adorable^^

Reply

mangomalte SWEDEN August 18, 2007 at 8:22 am

ha, i think it’s funny that they debuted here in sweden. :) i read two pages about it in a newspaper when they came here. not that i listen to them or ever will… i’m not a fan of Johnny’s.

Reply

Riko UNITED STATES July 22, 2007 at 10:59 pm

Interesting title…but seems like a good single. Most of the songs have gotten high stars on this site, and that doesn’t include the main song/title of the single…O_o

Reply

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