NEWS’ next single “Summer Time” will be released May 8th. The title song is used for RUSS-K’s summer 08 promotion, which is the third season NEWS has been promoting the brand and the second season their song was used as promotion.
The single covers were released first, and I was a little skeptical of the single quality – it looks like a no-effort design that even photoshop beginners can throw together. Plus, the title sounds extremely generic and cheesy – I mean, really, a song called Summer Time released in the summer time, unique. I was worried that NEWS was being shafted aside with a low budget production.
But then the CM using the song was released, as well as it being played on radio, and I really shouldn’t have worried at all.
I’m not delusional; honestly, “Summer Time” is still very much a Johnny’s and NEWS song with their karaoke-friendly tune, a danceable beat, and synth in the instrumental. But it is a Johnny’s song done well. It’s cheerfully toe-tapping but very laid back. There’s no gimmicky touches in this song like the Latin influences that Johnny’s loves lately – it’s a pure and simple pop song that depends more on tune than on instrumental novelty. And, while I guessed it would sound cheesy, the flow of the melody line gives this song a rather fresh sound.
The solos are pretty evenly distributed in this song and are vocally uncomplicated, giving everyone a chance to sing in this. Plus, the chorus is just so damn catchy – when they go “this is the summer time” how can you resist?
There’s also a rap insert by the Koyashige duo (Koyama and Kato) – in Johnny’s, you usually only hear raps like this from Arashi (and KAT-TUN, but Koki’s garbly gangster rap is another story altogether) and it’s nice to see NEWS try it and pull it off surprisingly well!
And if the 30 second RUSS-K commercial is any indication, the PV for “Summer Time” will probably have them happily frolicking on the beach in RUSS-K clothing. Besides, the CM in itself is pretty fun and ingenious – Johnny, give these boys a vacation, look at how desperate they are to get to the beach! 🙂
As always, there’s two versions. Aside from a few different songs, the limited edition is supposed to have a different and slightly larger photobooklet (10 pages vs 6 pages). The tracklist for the single is
1. SUMMER TIME
2. Easy Come Easy Go
3. Liar (Limited Edition Only)
3. Baby! Be My Baby! (Regular Edition Only)
4. SUMMER TIME instrumental (Limited Edition Only)
No leaks yet, but “Liar” has a rap portion so it is probably a sexy, dark, (hopefully not Latin… I’m really tired of those) song. And though the title still leaves me skeptical, “Baby! Be My Baby!” is co-composed by Shusui – and looking at his excellent past works with NEWS (“Akaku Moyuru Taiyo,” “Sayaendou,” “Hadashi no Cinderella Boy” to name a few) it’ll most likely be a great song.
While I am a firm believer that NEWS can pull off many diverse genres of music, I do enjoy these types of happy midtempo songs the best. I loved “Taiyou no Namida,” but NEWS just sound better singing happy rather than angsty songs to me! (Their angst is not very believable when they have so much member-ai!) I’m very excited for this release.
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