Monday, October 31, 2011

Just a little somethin'. (ちっちゃいもんだけなんや。)

I know, I know, I'm a horrible blogger. My only excuse is grad school apps, and really, that's not a great excuse when you think about it. I am, after all, half-way done as of about twenty minutes ago.


I will try for some regularity after I'm done with all this hooplah, I promise--I have one or two ideas swimming around in my head, and I'm sure I'll get the gumption to write them up eventually. If only you lot shared my passion for academic studies incorporating gender and Japanese popular culture, then I could share with you the brilliant dissertation topic I came up with last night...

BUT. Since I'm not sure how many seedy academics troll the interwebs in search of brilliant dissertation ideas, I won't. I'm keeping this baby all to myself until at least two professors have seen it.

... I wonder if paranoia is common among those involved in research. Probably.


BUCK-TICK is currently doing some pretty snazzy things, including a new single, a new album, and, yes, that's right, a whole new label. Now all you indie kids can listen to some decent music without feeling guilty about selling out to the man! (Also, wash your hair. Geez.) You can head on over to their website to check it out, or, as always, The Blog-Tick Phenomenon.

Personally, I think you should head over to their official site for a second even if you can't read Japanese, just to experience Atsushi in his shiny cape. It is shiny. On top of his vaguely vampiric hair-style and what appears to be a blue, crushed velvet suit... well. You have to see it now, don't you? Also, Imai has some lovely dandy-esque hair at the moment that I am enjoying thoroughly.

Look, just go, all right? I can't save the image and post it here for you, otherwise you know I would. Go. Go now. It'll take you five seconds. Come on.

How about some mood music for incentive?

I'll even keep it to songs that my dear old grandmother might enjoy.

ミウ(Miu) is definitely underrated. Melodic, haunting, and just all around beautiful.

The video, however... it makes no sense. It does have the haunting bit down, and I admit that anything which focuses on Atsushi's face for such extended periods does certainly qualify for "beautiful"... but still. I love it anyway, sense be damned. Cowboys, body parts, and a reprise of the asylum theme from BRAN-NEW LOVER with some sort of mummy get-up? I'm sure there's some deep, deep imagery going on here, but I'm equally sure that anyone who tried to explain it to me would sound completely off their nut.

Also, Imai is terrifying. Terrifying. He is a genius, yes, and I adore him and all the strange sounds he makes, but good god. Toll's a little scary too. It helps that the last time I heard him interviewed, he sounded like such a stereotypical old Japanese man that I couldn't help but laugh. Imai still sounds like Imai.

... speaking of BRAN-NEW LOVER...

Yes, yes, I know I posted this before, but it's one of my favorite songs, and the video is basically a crazy cyberpunk romp, and that is just awesome.

Also, Atsushi writing in a straight jacket. You don't have to be a slobbering fangirl to appreciate that.

.... the less said about the tentacles, however, the better.

And speaking of underrated songs...

I love 蜉蝣ーかげろうー (Kagerou, Mayfly) as much as the next guy, but I really think it's the single's second track that stands out. You want beautiful and melodic, here's your number right here.

It's an interesting bug theme that they went with... 蜉蝣 meaning mayfly or dragonfly and 空蝉 (Utsusemi) being, loosely, a discarded cicada shell. Of course, Utsusemi is also a character from The Tale of Genji, not to mention a metaphor for this world (as opposed to different Buddhist planes, usually) or a person living in it... And, ok, so, technically, 蜉蝣 can mean ephemerality, which I buy and therefore gives us a Buddhist theme, but my sources insist that reading it as "kagerou" removes that meaning, making it... well, honestly, I suppose that doesn't mean anything when we're talking about V-kei lyrics, if Dir en grey has taught me anything, but I do prefer to be neat, and... oh, forget it.

Really, 空蝉 is just a snazzy kinda song.

Admittedly, I don't belt out the lyrics when it comes on in the car like I do with 蜉蝣, but still.

And... uh... speaking of things you... belt out in various locations... (bear with me here)

Ah, this was the first tour I ever attended. How young and naive I was... and yet excited and appreciative as hell. Especially about the pimp hat and cane (not pictured here, unfortunately).

Admittedly, this is off of the DVD (which I own, but was not at the filming of), so I didn't actually get to see Atsushi's evil-twin-pirate goatee in person...  He did fall off a speaker, though, which was on the one hand very concerning and on the other, hilarious (after, of course, he joked about it, slapped his "bad" leg and showed no ill effects.) Never step on triangular speakers, kids.

Regardless. This is, in my humble opinion (hah), the best arrangement for this song. The original and the NOT GREATEST HITS versions can't even compare in terms of energy and the ability to cheer you the hell up.

Also, the Imai-kick (tm) and Imai-dance (tm) routine is a great workout. Try it, just for the duration of this song, and only when he does it. You'll be panting, I promise. And you wondered how he stays in such good shape.

He does that the whole time. Every show.

... ok, not the whole time, but still, enough so that it's goddamn impressive.

I kinda think he cut the hair so it wouldn't weigh him down anymore.

... BUCK-TICK is awesome.

This is Edo, signing off with a very pointed look at every one of you who did not, after all that, click the link. Come on.

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