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The Triumphant Return of TOKYO GIRLS’ STYLE to Tokyo Idol Festival 2017!

アイドルなのか?アーティストなのか?答えを出した東京女子流の3年ぶりのTokyo Idol Festival
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The Triumphant Return of TOKYO GIRLS’ STYLE to Tokyo Idol Festival 2017!

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TOKYO GIRLS’ STYLE finally returned to Tokyo Idol Festival after three years of absence. This live report focuses on their performance at SMILE GARDEN in August 6, 2017. However, before noting their overwhelming performance, the reasons for their three year absence should be explained.

TOKYO GIRLS’ STYLE declared themselves to be “artists” on January 5, 2015. They announced that they had pursued the concept of “girls dance and vocal group” since their beginning, and that they would henceforth refrain from performing at idol festivals, appearing in idol-specific magazines, and singing idol-like songs including their signature piece “Onnaji Kimochi”. This announcement made a huge impact on idol fans at the time and true to their word, TOKYO GIRLS’ STYLE disappeared from the idol scene. For more details, read the article below.

TOKYO GIRLS’ STYLE’s Artist Declaration: The Difference Between “Idol” and “Artist” in Japanese Music Culture

Then, what has TOKYO GIRLS’ STYLE actually done since their “artist declaration”? Their 5th album “REFLECTION” was released on December 23, 2015 and included the songs which Miyu Yamabe and Mei Shoji wrote the lyrics for. It fostered the members to become engaged in producing tracks. In addition, the group often had solo concerts overseas in London (2015), Taiwan and Hong Kong (2016 and 2017).

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On June 10, 2017, TOKYO GIRLS’ STYLE was announced as one of the performers at Tokyo Idol Festival 2017, which gave rise to a controversy among idol fans. The members directly revealed how this appearance came about. They said that the “artist declaration” as a result narrowed their scope of activities, and that the group can be regarded as both an idol and an artist. In other words, TOKYO GIRLS’ STYLE is nothing but TOKYO GIRLS’ STYLE. This is the circumstance that brought the group back to Tokyo Idol Festival.


Tokyo Idol Festival 2017 TOKYO GIRLS’ STYLE @SMILE GARDEN 18:50 ~ 19:10

SMILE GARDEN was packed with fans who had come to see TOKYO GIRLS’ STYLE in their return to Tokyo Idol Festival. To meet those expectations, the group performed their masterpiece “Onnnaji Kimochi” first. The choreography that makes people wave their hands from side to side made me feel that they had returned in triumph. However, as this song was released in 2010 and there were those who did not know of it. There were also those watching with suspicious glances at the group who left behind being an idol group for years.

Followed by “Chiisana Kiseki”, Shoji Mei said “you may have not listened to this song” and the group burst into “Shinkai -Hira mix-” which was released in August of 2016. This was not their latest tune but she chose the phrase. The members should have become conscious that the group was no longer seen as one of the headliners of idol festivals and some even gave them an icy glare. Regardless, they were full of confidence on the big stage, emboldened by the strength of their performance.

Although “Shinkai -Hira mix-” is not up-tempo, the audience gradually got lively. This was due to their power of expression, singing skills, and the quality of the song. They proved how they had continued training as an artist, not as an idol. The group put on full display the overwhelming performance level of an artist.

The curtain closed with “Attack Hyper Beat POP”, a song known for its distinctive use of flashlights during the performance. The audience gave thunderous applause to TOKYO GIRLS’ STYLE as they bowed deeply in thanks. Personally speaking, I consider TOKYO GIRLS’ STYLE to have been the best performance of Tokyo Idol Festival 2017.

Their extraordinary performance embarrassed me as I had personally wondered whether they were idols or artists. TOKYO GIRLS’ STYLE is both an artist and an idol. More specifically, TOKYO GIRLS’ STYLE is nothing but TOKYO GIRLS’ STYLE. Their unique presence is necessity for idol festivals. I honestly welcome their return and eagerly look forward to what they will do next!


Other Photos @HOT STAGE


Setlist:
01.Onnaji Kimochi
02.Chiisana Kiseki
03.Shinkai -Hira mix-
04.Attack Hyper Beat POP

Related Links:
TOKYO GIRLS’ STYLE Official Website:
http://tokyogirlsstyle.jp/tokyogirlsstyle_en/

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Related Artists : Tokyo Girls’ Style
Author
ykmk
ykmk

Growing up in Akihabara culture, ykmk became an otaku covering idol, anime, and pop music.

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