Ikujanashi Masquerade

Release Date: October 17, 2012

Track Listing

  1. Ikujinashi Masquerade
  2. Softcream Kiss
  3. If no Mousou (Type A)
  4. Maji de Koi Suru Go Byou Mae (Type B)
  5. Ikujinashi Masquerade (Hakata-ben Version) [Type C]
  6. Toui Machi e (Type D)
  7. Ikujinashi Masquerade (Instrumental)
  8. Softcream Kiss (Instrumental)
  9. If no Mousou (Instrumental) [Type A]
  10. Maji de Koi Suru Go Byou Mae [Type B]
  11. Toui Machi e (Instrumental) [Type D]

Review

Sashihara Rino’s second single Ikujinashi Masquerade is the theme song for the Muse no Kagami: My Pretty Doll movie. It also has a bit of a strange hook to it being marketed as Sashihara Rino & Anrire.

Anrire are Iriyama Anna, Kawei Rina and Kato Rena and unlike the norm for idol related singles, the person singing the song is not the center. That honor goes to Kawei Rina. Sashihara is just off to the left in the back in the formation for this song.

To see Sashihara being cock blocked by the former team 4 members on the Type A cover, in the video and during performances was confusing at first. But it was explained to me by the more knowledgeable in the ways of the AKB, this is all a play on Sashihara’s fail character.

So kudos to whatever brilliant mind thought of working that idea for this song because it’s some funny stuff. A suggestion for next time, more Kato Rena up front please.

Anyway, let’s get to the songs on this single package. Unlike Sashihara’s debut Soredemo Suki da yo, Ikujinashi Masquerade is less sugary pop and more dramatic sounding. I haven’t watched a single episode of Muse no Kagami so I don’t know if this was intentional or not for the movie but it is a welcome change from the typical AKB formula.

Granted the song isn’t a momentous shift in sound but it’s enough to at least show there’s a wee bit of effort in some of these solo singles that are now being churned out. Moving on to the b-sides, they are an interesting lot featuring a faithful cover of Hirosue Ryoko’s Maji de Koi suru Go Byou Mae.

The third tracks on types A and D feature songs that have lyrics written by Sashihara herself. Unlike another AKB family member Kitahara Rie, there is no desperate plea for multiple sex partners. A shame really, but perhaps Sashihara learned from her issue that got her sent to HKT and kept things clean.

Of the two self-penned songs If Mousou sounded like the better track to my ears. I don’t mind Sashihara singing ballads but she’s no Kashiwagi Yuki or Oshima Yuko when it comes to those kinds of songs. Keep her within mid to up tempo idol songs and it’s all good.

She ain’t no diva.

Lastly there is a Hakata-ben version of Ikujinashi Masquerade translated by HKT48’s Kodama Haruka. I don’t know that much Japanese to tell the difference in regional dialects so I can’t comment on this version at all.

In the end this was an okay set of songs and possibly a little bit of a downgrade from what was included on Soredemo Suki da yo. Ikujinashi Masquerade is for sure the runaway winner while the b-sides (other than the cover song) leave a lot to be desired.

Ikujinashi Masquerade (Type A)

YesAsia LogoCDJapan Logo

Ikujinashi Masquerade (Type B)

YesAsia LogoCDJapan Logo

Ikujinashi Masquerade (Type C)

CDJapan Logo