♪It's lame! It's lame! It's lame lame lame!♫
I will run through the streets singing that if that's what I need to do to properly convey just how lame I think Sweet Refrain is. And you know what's even lamer? The fact that it's a single! This lame song of lameness is going to be the first single after Level3! Isn't that hilarious? Ha. Ha ha. Maybe this isn't as hilarious as I originally thought.
Normally when I announce Perfume news, I think I'm pretty perky about it. After all, they're my favorite group to review! Any news of releases or concerts from them is always happy news, right? Well... not always. Like when a song you're not a huge fan of turns out to be the next A-side. Or when they announce a tie-in with a children's franchise. One or the other! I of course am referring to Sweet Refrain, the next... single for Perfume. The song has actually been known for awhile now, even before Level3 was released. That's because Sweet Refrain was announced as the ending song for a J-drama called Toshidensetsu no Onna. And naturally before I'd even heard what the song sounded like, the prospect of new Perfume music only added to the ecstatic buzz I had for the release of Level3. But then everything changed when... I heard the song. Or the short version at least.
In that moment, I realized that Sweet Refrain was a very, very lame song. Like... holy crap, is it lame. I don't even think it's a bad song, it's just lame. It sounds like a reject from the JPN era mixed with some gratuitous dubstep and a beat that's all over the place. And upon realizing just how lame Sweet Refrain sounded, I grew a lot less excited about its release. So when I heard it was going to be an A-side? I laughed. And cried. But mostly laughed. I'm sorry, I just don't think this is a very strong song. Even after I've heard the full version on Perfume Locks! I still don't like Sweet Refrain very much. I don't want to say I hate it as much as I did Spending all my time and it's a whole lot better than Mirai no Museum but for an A-side? It's pretty weak. I think my biggest problem with the song is that structure wise, it's really messy. None of the verses match and the chorus sounds like the chorus from Kokoro no Sports. I swear to god, even the tempo is the same as the chorus in Kokoro no Sports. Now Kokoro no Sports is a fine and dandy song and all but I only need one Kokoro no Sports.
Sweet Refrain just feels like a poorly blended mix of the sound from JPN and the sound of Level3. Look, if Nakata wants to go all cutesy technopop for Perfume's next single, I'm cool with that. If we he wants to go EDM, I'm cool with that too. But this is like some kind of botched attempt at combining the two styles. And the end result is a messy pile of lameness. Even after seeing the covers and outfits for Sweet Refrain, I'm still not that hyped for it. It's weird because Perfume releasing something new so soon after Level3 is something to get excited about! I had to wait eight months between the release of ⊿ and Fushizen na Girl/Natural ni Koishite. Yet even that doesn't get me excited about Sweet Refrain. Even when the covers and outfits were revealed for the single, I'm still not getting the hype. That might be because I don't even really like the outfits that much for this single. I know everyone's been fawning over how mature the girls look in them, and I admit they do. But they look old and washed out. It's like they've aged 20 years. I think what would help is having the outfits be a little more colorful. The black and gray color scheme is depressing to look at.
I don't know, maybe the outfits look better when they dance in them? I guess it is a refreshing change from the monotonous styling they've been getting lately with all their outfits. And then there are the covers, which look okay I guess. Like the outfits, they're very mature looking with the black and white color scheme. I do kind of like the little splash of pink font. And having the clocks they hold display each member's birth date is pretty clever. But I'm not jumping up and down either. I'm even having a hard time trying to write about my impressions of Sweet Refrain so far, because how many times can I say it's lame before my readers start to get bored? Hell, I'm getting bored just talking about this song! I don't know, Spice was also used for a drama and that song grew on me a lot. Who knows? Maybe Sweet Refrain will do the same. But the PV better be pretty freaking awesome, along with the B-side.
So yeah. Sweet Refrain exists. And it's an A-side. And it's lame. Come to think of it, there are a lot of lame songs coming out like Heart Electric, Chiisana Kiseki, that Weather Girls song I can remember the name to... maybe November's just shaping up to be the month of absolute lameness!