Here’s a (Tiny) Peek behind the DOTS Curtain

Hey gang! Brian over at Supreme Nothing may have an even deeper love for the enigmatic Dots than I do, and we got to chatting about this last week; the below is the result of his investigation into how this beautiful madness comes about. Remember to check out Brian’s other stuff, including playing ringleader for some of our more ambitious games, over on his site!

Shoegaze was the term coined for a sub-genre of postmodern bands, initially from the UK region, who played gorgeous, multi-layered rock with distorted guitars, obscured vocals and a dreamy quality that swept you up in emotions. The bands tended to let the music do the talking, so they often maintained a detached demeanor, rarely making eye contact with the audience. In other words, they gazed at their shoes as they played.

In the 90’s, bands like My Bloody Valentine, Lush, Ride and Slowdive enjoyed a rocketing burst of success worldwide. Some of the bands broke up, and others like MBV just sort of retreated away and were assumed by many to be done. In the last few years, all of these bands have been warmly welcomed back, some with new material and sold-out shows. Shoegaze is back once again in the West.

Meanwhile in Japan, it never really ended. This whole time there’s been a multitude of beloved shoegaze, dream pop and post-rock bands keeping that melancholy and dreamy torch lit. In fact, Japan has one of the best shoegaze scenes worldwide. Running parallel to this is an exploding scene of new independent pop idol groups who actively seek out experimentation with other styles in their quest to attract a piece of the wota pie. And that’s what brings us to our elusive subject at hand … Continue reading

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We Interview Idols: NECRONOMIDOL

I’m sure by now you’ve all read Krv’s take on last week’s NECRONOMIDOL one-man in London, if not check it out here, because he put this experience into words far better than I ever could! But let’s just say; it was only a few months ago that I said that I’ll probably never attend an idol show for personal reasons (aka Japan is expensive), if you told March!Kerrie that in 4 months time she’d be having a quick chat with Necroma inside a tiny kitchen she’d say “did I get drunk and post bad self-insert fanfiction again?” But now I’ve had a few days to reflect on what the heck just happened, I can certainly say it’s real. I have audio files and photos to prove it. Continue reading

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100 Days of Tsurezure, Day 15: Bonjour

Well, the big thing for today’s 100 Days of Tsurezure is … the interview! Great job, Ariane, and thank you for the contribution!

Montreal is tonight:

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We Interview Idols: Yukueshirezutsurezure (Not Secured, Loose Ends)

I alluded to this in yesterday’s 100 Days of Tsurezure post; ol’ Maniac here ultimately had to cancel his plans to see Not Secured, Loosed Ends in Toronto, but Papermaiden had previously volunteered to provide translation help, and she did a great job with this. And it’s the first interview we’ve done! Pretty cool.

A few notes to get started: This interview has been edited for clarity. Most of the words are the members, transcribed from their sentences written live using PC translation. Most of the answers were kind of brainstormed by the members as a group, piecing up sentences. Unless otherwise specified, you can assume the answer is the group’s and not a particular member. Shidare, as the great leader she is, often guided the discussion and prompted members to see if they would like to add anything. Imamura-san, the founder of Codomomental, was also present and sometimes helped the girls answer questions about the essence and concept. Much of the interview was conducted textually. Imamurasan suggested to use Google Translate to facilitate the interview in case the Japanese-English language barrier got too dense*. For now, enjoy what might be the first official idol interview conducted in person through Google Translate.  Continue reading

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100 Days of Tsurezure, Day 14: Honor and Glory

Yesterday must have been a great one for Yukueshirezutsurezure. Portents abounded! Or, at least, Shidare found herself a sakura:

After a very successful (and rowdy-sounding!) first gig in Toronto with Next Music from Tokyo, Not Secured, Loose Ends got ready to crank out another mind-blowing performance:

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Prepare Yourself for A-to-J’s Live Interview with The World Standard

This is so cool that I’m just going to:

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Inside the Homicidol Mind: Zenbu Kimi no Sei Da on ‘Wagamama Shinsei Hominina’ Etc.

I got a treat for you guys; our man Phillter continues his triumphant translational return by covering this Zenbu Kimi no Sei Da interview from Natalie.mu. The subject? As with all things Zenkimi, a bunch of random stuff in addition to their new single!

This one’s legitimately great. Getting into a Zenkimi member’s head is like stepping into some weird, twisted, functional Candyland.

Specifically on the new release, “Wagamama Shinsei Hominina”:

Mashiro: We five are trying to announce ourselves through a very Zen Kimi-esque chaotic and loud pop number. “Rebirth” is also a part of the title, and it’s because we are bringing out a brand-new Zen Kimi I think. I’m so happy that I was able to sing this song with these five members.

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Inside the Homicidol Mind: Q’ulle on Weathering Storms and Being Awesome

Okay, so maybe I exaggerated the title a little bit, but you go ahead and tell me who in this world has their primary advocate (in this case, a record label) basically disappear and drop your contract, leaving you homeless and possibly aimless … and then come out ahead through the storm.

If you raised your hand, good for you! And/or if you guessed Q’ulle, good for you for being able to read context clues! I of course jest, seeing as how I rarely have any other way of being, but the important thing is, hey look, a Q’ulle interview! This is from Natalie.mu at the time of the release of “DON’T STOP.”

So how did Q’ulle feel about that whole business?

Maamu: Of course we had nothing but a feeling of unease. At any rate, we had our heads full of making (last) summer’s tour a success. But even with that target, I ended up breaking a bone in the middle of the tour and had to stop participating in it. I was able to come back for the tour finale, but while I wasn’t able to get on stage I would think, like, “What should I do?”.

Oh damn. Continue reading

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Inside the Homicidol Mind: Kuromiya Rei on Being Idol

Happy Monday, amigos. Seeing as how quiet things had been lately in the idolverse, I had originally intended to make today a little introspective, a chance to look inward into the minds of the people who provide the entertainment that we all love so much. But now we can do that across a couple of days intead!

Today’s entry is none other than Kuromiya Rei, who was interviewed for IDOL AND READ a few months ago. Kayseur put together a very thorough translation for the piece, which runs the gamut from idle talk about relationships to her feelings about Ladybeard and her broad musical career, among a number of other topics.

On addressing her past

You can’t convey all of your feelings through text alone. Aren’t social networks nothing but a place to flatter your ego? Text isn’t enough, if you want to talk, you can just come meet me after our lives during the goodies sales, and if you can’t come, just call me out in the street! Judging people on looks alone isn’t very pretty. There are times when I talk a bit harshly and some where my tweets are a bit extreme, but I don’t want people to look at my words, I want people to look at the real me. I don’t want to be judged on my past, that’s why I deleted all of my tweets.

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Before They Were Homicidol: Imada Yuna and the Wages of Sloth

Whoops, I did it again; despite some doubts about whether delving back into the bowels of some favorite idols’ performance history was worth the trouble, the now-not-so-recent entry on BiSH’s Atsuko* got me thinking about other notables’ time as safe, normal idols, and I remembered Yuna’s time before PassCode.

Yes, the world’s tiniest harsh vocalist was, once upon a time, this:


She’s in there if you look very closely!

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