Happiness – GIRLZ N’ EFFECT Review

Happiness Girls N Effect Cover

Release Date: October 12, 2016

Track Listing

  1. Holiday
  2. Ordinary Girls
  3. Love Wonderland
  4. Always
  6. Seek A Light
  7. Bright Blue ~Watashi no Ruri-iro~ (Kawamoto Ruri solo)
  8. Dancing in Solitude (Kawamoto Ruri solo)
  9. Autumn Autumn
  10. Come Come
  11. Show Me Your Heart
  12. Born to Be Free
  13. Sexy Young Beautiful


GIRLZ N’ EFFECT is the second album from E-girls unit Happiness. It features two solo tracks by Kawamoto Ruri, the theme song for the Samantha Thavasa Autumn-Winter 2016 CM (Love Wonderland) and the theme song for the movie Itazura na Kiss THE MOVIE ~Part 1 Haisuru hen~ (Always). 

4 years between albums has brought some change within the EXILE sister group/E-girls unit Happiness. In October 2012 MIMU left to focus on her education and in April of 2014 MAYU left to pursue a modeling career with a different agency. They also gained 2 members in May of 2013 with performer Suda Anna and vocalist Kawamoto Ruri joining the group.

What hasn’t changed is their overall sound. That is still very much within the wheelhouse of saccharine dance pop even though the opening tracks Holiday and Ordinary Girls with their harder edge might fool you into thinking differently at first.

Of the six new songs on this album the 2 solo ballads by Kawamoto Ruri tend to stand out the most. Both follow the tried and true EXILE template and showcase her vocal abilities quite nicely. The light dancehall inspired Autumn Autumn and the pounding dance floor feelings of Show Me Your Love are also tracks that demand immediate attention.

Being the youngest group (average age of 17.14) in the E-girls collective the youthful energy from their first album Happy Time has carried over into GIRLZ N’ EFFECT. The only minor quibble I could find with this album is that the songs on it may sound like they bleed a bit into similar ones that other E-girls units (or the E-girls as a whole) have done in the past. With that said, there’s still enough here for Happiness to present themselves as a stand alone group away from the pack.

GIRLZ N’ EFFECT (Regular Edition)






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Greg is the creator, administrator, editor, code monkey, overlord and general jack of all trades at Selective Hearing. He can be found lurking among the overseas Asian pop fandom and bumming around Japan every year for some reason or another.