AKB48's second original album [1830m] sold 870,621 copies in its first week. Compared to the 601,985 copied sold of their last album [Koko ni Ita Koto], total sales rose by 45 percent.
This makes it the second album of a female group to cross the mark of 800 thousand copies sold 1st week next to SPEED's 1998 album "Rise".
It was a wonderfully optimistic and bittersweet ending to the movie and it's a perfect start into the album. One of the best songs of the year.
Smooth sailing. I really want to like this song more, but on a scale from zero to ten I can only give it a five. It would be a perfectly adequate b-side for any single. Not much to either dislike or rave about. It's fitting they'd use this song to promote the upcoming 1/153 video game.
A lukewarm start into Disc 2. The lyrics are interesting; something new and unusual for AKB, dealing as the title suggests, with very negative feelings like ignorance and jealousy. The arrangement doesn't do much for me. It has a touch of 80s to it - which isn't bad, but the vocals sound strangely like something more common to k-pop. It doesn't really do the best job in hyping you up for what's to come.
Plastic no Kuchibiru
This one does though. It's one remarkable track. I'm impressed and weirded out by it at the same time.
As a song it works much better than "Hate". The autotuning works in favor of it. This is autotune like it's used in synthpop, not to improve vocal performance; I'm sure Mariko can sing this well enough.
It's funky, with clever lyrics and extremely repeatable. But it sure isn't AKB or even idol pop in general. I'm almost listening to it like to something completely unrelated to the album. Guess I'm not the only one who's getting a Perfume/Utada Hikaru ("traveling" etc.) vibe. Another group should release this as a single. Or Mariko herself as her solo debut. Would be an interesting direction to go into.
Omoide no Hotondo
Really beautiful, personal and solidly written ballad for Atsumina with solid vocal performances by both of them. The lyrics are moving, dealing with Acchan's feelings about graduating and Minami/fellow group members.
I would love to see a video of them both recording this song together in the studio.
Iede no Yoru
Very powerful song. Lyrics and music fit just great. The soaring intro and chorus give a feeling of freedom and hope. I imagine it to be a very energetic choreography if they perform this at Tokyo Dome. I want to see them running to this.
Scandalous ni ikou
Seeing that title I expected something with a little more bite, but the song's solid enough. It does fit the two quite well genre-wise. Yuko sounds like she's having a great time.
It's totally in line with some other fun Team B songs. Natsuki, Amina, Tomomi, Kana seem pretty prominent. I don't like listening to it as much as some of the other songs, but seeing it as part of a stage with a similar kind of quirky choreography like K4th's [16-nin Shimai no Uta] should be entertaining.
Avogado janee shi
Really like it. Actually no, I love it. I'm usually not much into these uber-cutesy songs about fruits but this is one's simply so annoying it's good. Ridiculous in its catchiness. I can't wait to see them perform this at Tokyo Dome.
Is the "uwhoohoo" a little homage to [Idol nante yobanaide] or am I reading too much into it?
Aki-P sure knows which songs to give to which teams. This one probably couldn't sound any more Team 4-ish. Not an oustanding track but it does its job. Enjoyable enough.
Bokutachi wa ima hanashiaubeki nan da
Interesting choice of duet, although I'm not quite sure if I understand why it's these two, apart from the novelty of it. Tomochin gets a little nasal at times but she doesn't make as bad an impression compared to Yukirin as one might fear. Yukirin doesn't disappoint.
Sakuranbo to Kodoku
I'm not sure what they are trying to do with the intro here. Considering these are the kenkyuusei, I wanted something a little fresher and lively. Didn't have to be another [First Rabbit], but this one feels a tad too lackluster and reserved for the younglings.
Daiji na Jikan
Wonderful, wonderful ballad. [Sakura no Shiori] has always held a special place in my heart and I'm glad they're going back every once in a while to singing songs with a more subdued backing track. Everything is in harmony here.
Itsuka mita Umi no Soko
Good-old carefree and generic AKB. What else do you want?
I'm starting to get a little worried about Ozawa-san though. His previous efforts [Mittsu no Namida] and [Aishiteraburu] really do make it sound as if he's building all his songs from the same collection of bricks.
Guu guu Onaka
Like [Hone Hone Waltz] (which isn't exactly part of my more treasured memories of early AKB) it sounds like it was made to animate kindergarten kids. It's cute and not taking itself seriously at all. I feel it would work better as a "hidden track" at the end of the album.
Yasashisa no Chizu
This song is good until you get to the chorus, which sounds really uninspired to me with just too much of the same monotone percussion. Maybe one of the weaker songs of the bunch. Sorry. I really like the rest of it though. Someone write this song a new chorus.
Really soothing song with a pretty chorus, but the verses let you wait for it. All you want to hear is that chorus that we already know in part from the WONDA commercials. I guess having seen those 15-second clips so many times, we've gotten too used to just hearing that part.
Aozora yo samishikunai ka?
It's the group's (or whole franchise's) farewell to Acchan. A good closing number with beautifully melancholic lyrics before Acchan's quasi-epilogue.
Sakura no Hanabira (Maeda Atsuko solo ver.)
I don't think much needs to be said here. Only thing I might change is to give it a just slightly cleverer piano accompaniment. It could be less heavy in the second half. But let's not search for something negative; it's an absolutely wonderful song.