10) ベリーグッドマン – “Eye to Eye” “NEW”

The song is being used as the ending theme song for the TV Asahi drama “Setouchi Shounen Yakyuudan” which translates to: “Setouchi’s Boys’ Baseball Team.” The show is an adaptation of the 1984 film of the same name, whose title in English was translated to MacArthur’s Children.

9) ザ・クロマニヨンズ – “ペテン師ロック” “NEW”

The Cro-Magnons have never failed to have any of their fifteen singles crack the top 20 on the Oricon charts, and likewise for Japan Hot 100’s Top 30 chart. With this single, however, the group has claimed spots on multiple music programs’ Top 10 charts (including this one).

8) aiko – “恋をしたのは” “NEW”

“恋をしたのは” is aiko’s newest single, and is currently one of the hottest songs in Japan because the song is used in Kyoto Animation’s animated movie adaptation of the best-selling manga “Koe no Katachi” or in English, The Shape of the Voice. The song’s lyrics were written to echo the main characters’ mixed feelings towards one another.

7) 冨田ラボ – “Radio 体操ガール” (featuring YONCE) “NEW”

This song — “Radio 体操ガール,” or “Radio Gymnastics Girl” — was released the same day the group 冨田ラボ announced the release date for their new album, Superfine.

The song describes a man’s feelings as he watches a girl from afar, and makes use of the percussive onomatopoeic expression “beat, beat” to mimic the beating of the heart.

6) 星野源 – “恋” “NEW”

The music video for this song has proven itself to be a bona fide phenomenon that has already garnered two million views in just a span of few weeks upon upload, and the song has also been getting major radio play because of a massive influx of listener requests.

The song’s lyrics are about trying to identify what love actually is, and what it means to fall in love.

5) WANIMA – “ともに” -1

The music video for this song was shot in Kanagawa Prefecture. Since the song was used in commercials to promote the deodorant 8×4 Body Fresh, the director made the decision to shoot its video in a pool to evoke the feeling of “freshness.” A making-of featurette for the music video was produced and aired by SPACE SHOWER NEWS on August 5th at 11 P.M. as a special television event.

4) SHISHAMO – “夏の恋人” +2

The music video for this song was directed by 番場秀, who has been an active music video director for nineteen years and is perhaps most known for his work with J-Rock mainstays Bump Of Chicken, having directed their first official live concert film back in 2012, as well as the music videos for their hit singles “Supernova” and “Planetarium.”

The music video shows SHISHAMO’s primary songwriter Asako Miyazaki going on a road trip through the countryside, giving viewers the sense of wistful nostalgia that comes with the end of summer.

3) 東京スカパラダイスオーケストラ – “さよならホテル” (featuring 横山 剣) +2

The music video for this song, also directed by 番場秀, depicts ten men who appear to be “living in the moment” as they experience the bliss of being in love, despite being stranded in a hotel.

In an interview, the band’s baritone saxophonist 谷中敦 explained that the song is about the internal struggle that comes with wanting to stay in a place where love has been found while knowing full well that to stay would be unreasonable and that forward movement is necessary to live, and how the memories of the lost love will cause great pain. He admits that he was embarrassed by the intense romanticism of the lyrics, which is why he gave them to 横山 剣 to sing, whom 谷中敦 believes gave the material some much-needed maturity.

2) 山下達郎 – “Cheer Up! The Summer” “NEW” +1

This is the first single released by 山下達郎 after a three-year-long hiatus. The music video for the song tells the story of a high school cheerleader who insists on pursuing a depressed baseball player who wants nothing to do with her. The video is thematically relevant, seeing as how the song is about how one should never give up, despite the onslaught of hardship one could potentially encounter along the way to accomplishing their goal.

1) RADWIMPS – “前前前世” =

Seeing as how the reception of the 君の名は soundtrack has been so overwhelmingly positive, Radwimps has decided that they will release another studio album sometime during November of this year. Though few details have been released about the specifics of the album’s content, it has been confirmed that this song will appear on the album, but with its original arrangement, which had to be significantly retooled for the 君の名は score.

The massive popularity of this song has led to multiple Nico Nico Douga singers whose online success has led to record deals with Sony Music Entertainment, like Sako Tomohisa AKA ShounenT, posting cover versions of the song– an abnormal occurrence, given how recently it was released.

EXTRA TRACKS:

Listener Request: GReeeeN – “春を待ちわびて” (Song request from an anonymous listener from Japan)

This song is about how one finds themselves longing to stay with the person they love before they disappear from their life completely.

This song became quite popular among Japanese students back in 2012, owing to its usage as the graduation song for various middle schools and high schools that year.

80’s/90’s Flashback: ウルフルズ – “ガッツだぜ!!”

The music video for this song is goofy and fun and thrives on deliberate anachronism, blending 20th-century technology with Meiji Era-appropriate imagery. The video also incorporates a parody of the popular anime series, Kindaichi Case Files.

When translated literally, “ガッツだぜ” means “guts.” In the case of this song’s name, its idiomatic translation is “demonstration of bravery.”

J-Rock Pick: フジファブリック – “赤黄色の金木犀”

“赤黄色の金木犀”, which, in English, roughly translates to: “Red Yellow Fragrant Olive,” was the third of four singles released by フジファブリック in a season-themed series; “Akaki-iro no Kinmokusei” has an “autumn” theme.