These are some of the single and album releases for December (i.e. releases from groups that I’m interested in tracking). My apologies if I missed a significant release – please mention the artist and title in a comment and I’ll update the list.

More complete listings are available on merchant websites (I use CD Japan’s list). For my part, I think there’s some value in also having a shortlist (especially for my own reference), so I’ll stick with this format.

December 5th

AKB48 – Eien Pressure

GLAY – Justice [from] Guilty

GLAY – Unmeiron

HY – Route 29

Koda Kumi – Koishikute

EXILE – Exile Best Hits – Love Side / Soul Side – (album)

Exile Atsushi – MELROSE – Aisanai Yakusoku –

Monkey Majik + Oda Kazumasa – A Christmas Song

Monkey Majik – English Best (album)

Nakashima Mika – Hatsukoi

Suzuki Fuku – Iyaiya Yo-!!

December 8th

Hamasaki Ayumi – again

December 12th

flumpool – experience

NEWS – World Quest / Pokopon Pekorya

Becky – My Friend – Arigatou

LUNA SEA – The End of the Dream / Rogue

BIGMAMA – Jeffrey Campbell no Skate Shoes de

December 19th

Nogizaka46 – Seifuku no Mannequin

GReeeeN – Yuki no Ne

GACKT – White Lovers – Shiawase na Toki –

Makihara Noriyuki – Down Over the Clover Field (album)

MISIA – Back in Love Again

Kimura Kaela – Sync (album)

Ikimonogakari – Baradon (album)

Dir en Grey – Rinkaku

December 26th

V6 – Rock Your Soul

Funky Monkey Babys – Funky Monkey Babys 5 (album)

Koda Kumi – Koishikute

UVERworld – Reversi

January 1st

Golden Bomber – Dance My Generation

Sandaime J Soul Brothers – Miracle (album)

January 8th

Hamasaki Ayumi – A Classical (album)

January 9th

Yamada Ryosuke – Mystery Virgin

Yuzu – Reason

Fudanjuku – Jinsei Wahaha!

Looks like a lot of great artists are going to find themselves beaten by AKB48 on December 5th, but the top spot isn’t everything. My favorite for that day is GLAY, so I’ll be rooting for them.

I’m extremely curious to see how NEWS does with “World Quest”. Will they be able to keep up the momentum from their successful return? I actually like “World Quest” a lot more than “Chankapana”, so I hope it does well (thereby encouraging them to continue in this direction).

Then there’s the question about Yamada-kun’s solo single. I haven’t heard the song – I’ll be getting the Best Artist performance later today – so I’ll withhold judgment. However, I was really hoping for a new Hey! Say! Jump single with his new drama role (which also involves fellow HSJ member Arioka Daiki-kun), and I’m disappointed on that score.