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Saturday, April 1, 2017

Song of the Week! 1 April 2017

Expecting a regular feature? TOO BAD. KATAOKA TIME.

 24 Jikan no Hero (24時間のヒーロー) Tsugumi Kataoka (カタオカツグミ)
pop'n 20 fantasiax18 (410)x19 (466)x28 (812)x39 (1398)
pop'n sunny park onward
x25 (310)x34 (500)x45 (1398)
All (Battle)
x19 (323)x29 (558)
 pop'n music 20 fantasia (and sequels), pop'n rhythmin

I -really- can't hide it anymore: I have a particular fascination for the musical works made by independent composer Tsugumi Kataoka (片岡嗣実), exploring the most unexpected topics in many lighthearted and humorous ways, both solo and with other artists, since the very first installments of the pop'n music franchise. If you're wandering what thrilling backstory lies behind such a music production legacy, boy if it's your lucky day!

Born March 21, this freelance artist has begun his career as one of the most recurring commission artists for music games-compatible songs, with a particular dedication to the aforementioned bemani series as part of the duo known as Parquets (パーキッツ) together with lyricist/singer Manami Fujino (ふじのマナミ), following the will of pop'n music 3 director Koji Okamoto that has personally scouted for the act to be debuting in said game with a couple of songs (see also here for other Parquets-related trivia!).

Whether the making of a Tsug-powered 'Konami Original' has either involved the composer on his own or together with other musical talents, a lot of different styles between full-instrumental and vocalized songs have inspired all sorts of imagery and, of course, unique rival characters to be paired with after the song's creation. While for the Parquets songs the characters fell on the more cutesy design to match the proprietary songs (including the always-popular characters Poet and Sato-san+Cat), Kataoka's solo works have the tendency to spawn the weirdest themes and wackiest imagery, all based upon the finished song prior to release. Ever wondered what are the hassles of a mountaineer while climbing mountains? Now you know, too! Do you wish to understand the eating habits of a viking with the aid of a random announcer? Here you are! Wanna hear about the wreckage and destruction caused by a 10-feet-tall fire-breathing lizard known as Godzil-I mean, Gorgonzola? You're welcome!

Knowing this background production, it's even more inspiring that the Tsug has went on a radically-different direction when creating today's spotlighted song, starting from the fact that is is his first track in gaming to be credited with his own real name and no pseudonyms of sorts. The order of creation for the song 24 Jikan no Hero (lit. '24-Hour Hero') and its related character has went the other way around than usual, meaning that the uniform-wearing magician YuushaAAAA (勇者ああああ) drawn by CG designer Tokky (とっきー) has molded the song's creation and lyrics, with the ultimate result being a song whose lyrics are the jingle for the fictional convenience store chain in which the brave hero in his faraway RPG-themed kingdom is working part-time to get in the graces of his customers and by association, his king and princess. A long version of 24 Jikan no Hero is available in Kataoka's second solo album from 2012, Uchuu Convenience (宇宙コンビニエンス), while an alternate cut of the game version that sounds more like an Anime opening theme was featured in 2014's Ore no Hashimoto ni Hizamazukuga ii (俺の足元に跪くがいい) EP.

Despite song genres for the pop'n music series becoming a discontinued habit, 24 Jikan no Hero is seemingly linked to the pop'n music eclale song Ikari to Tomo ni Sarinu!! (怒りと共に去りぬ!!), where not only the rival character SenshiIIII (戦士いいいい) has the same inside-joke in its name poking fun at RPG players giving the quickest name possible to their characters in order to start the game quicker, but YushaAAAA himself also appears in some animation cameos of the wild bicycle-riding warrior.

Quite expectable for a Lv.39 EX mode, the chart offers a blend of small single-note stairs with consecutive note chord portions, with a preference to same-row note combinations to be pressed at the same time. If you decide to play this song yourself with the ojama dance modifier, watch out for the flan-frying hero running up and down the playing field and serve those customers!


Once again, a pop'n music track has fallen on this line of features due to April Fools silliness! For more context on this inside joke, also check the other related pages:

Lyrics Feature

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