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Cherry Pop

Title - 'Battle And Romance: Limited' + '5th Dimension'
Artist - Momoiro Clover Z

OK, stick with me here people! For not much of what I will say, or even write will make much sense to you, outside of those of you who can speak Japanese, of course, but Momoiro Clover Z (Z is officially pronounced as /zɛd/ on international activities) (ももいろクローバーZ Momoiro Kurōbā Zetto) is a Japanese idol group beloved in their homeland quite like no other! Indeed, the bands name is actually commonly abbreviated as Momoclo (ももクロ Momokuro).

There, told you this was going to be a tricky one, but let's move onwards and upwards regardless, shall we. Momoiro Clover Z also is known for energetic performances, incorporating elements of ballet, gymnastics, and even action movies! indeed, in 2013, it was the 4th music artist by total sales revenue in Japan, with over ¥5.2 billion.

An impressive set of stats, I think you will agree, and so lucky for us here in America, Momoiro Clover Z - hot on the heels of the group's history making collaboration with hard rock legends KISS (rocker Paul Stanley penned two songs for their special international collaboration) - are looking to capitalize on the overflowing interested of Western markets by having their first two albums released here (in select markets).

The hugely popular stars - Kanako Momota, Shiori Tamai, Ayaka Sasaki, Momoka Ariyasu, and Reni Takagi - first release their most recent album, 5th Dimension. An album that also features a quite excellent collaboration with metal royalty, superstar guitarist Marty Friedman of Megadeath, following that just two weeks later and a very Limited Edition version of their debut album, Battle And Romance will be out in the stores. The latter will also contain a bonus disc of solo recordings by each of the Momoiro Clover Z members.

Founded in 2008, Momoiro Clover Z have topped their country's album charts, performed live endlessly, have packed stadiums with tens of thousands of devoted fans, and brought forth danceable rhythms and bouncy vocal melodies of J-pop combined with cutting edge music as if it was the most natural thing for them to have ever done.

As for these two albums, well, in July of 2011, Momoiro Clover Z released their first album, Battle and Romance. Later in December, Hotexpress described the band as the number-one breakthrough idol artist of 2011 and stated that the album became a big turning point for them. In the following February of 2012, Battle and Romance won the Grand Prix at the CD Shop Awards as the best CD of the year selected by music shop employees from all over the country. Indeed, Momoiro Clover Z was the first idol group to win the award.

Momoiro Clover Z's second full-length album, 5th Dimension was released in April of 2013. It sold 180,000 copies in the first week and debuted on top of the Oricon charts, with the first album Battle and Romance surging to number two in the Japanese album charts. Finally, it won a platinum disk award. In August of that same year, Momoiro Clover Z held a concert at Nissan Stadium. It has the largest capacity in Japan - ever!

So, as much as listing the song titles, save for those written in English, would be pointless at this juncture, just know that the band's songs are intentionally ridiculous hyperactive J-pop numbers - one and all! Listening to them, back to back was exhausting, but closing your eyes you can just imagine their live performances. Heavily choreographed and featuring acrobatic stunts, the group is noted for their "anarchic energy" that is similar to that of punk bands. And, trust me, that comes across in spades here on these two seismic albums!

www.evilline.com/momoclo/global





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