Despair Not for the Dissolution of our Dearest Dots

Before dashing off this article too briskly, I took in the last evening to ponder yesterday’s announcement that the dot-chans have scheduled what will be their final live, do a little research to understand what I could, and also to reflect on where we go in a world without the beloved shoegaze idols we’ve come to know.

I know that most all of you who follow the group are already aware of the impending closure, because I heard from a number of you about it, some in personal messages, and others from reading your reactions online. It speaks to the unique specialness of this group in the way many of you expressed your thoughts with a feeling of personal loss and perhaps a sense of disappointment. Oshi-loss, as Kerrie refers to it, is a very real emotional reaction when you’ve connected to an idol who’s graduating or a group that’s dissolving. And although these dot-chans have largely maintained a sort of aloof anonymity, they still touched a part of each of us fans. It’s also very notable to point out, as this article from Matt Bedford of Muso Japan demonstrates, that the group succeeded in gaining followers outside of idol circles.

I did reach out to Japanese fans, and I also read the group’s blog entry containing the chan’s statements. I can tell you that amongst the fans, the announcement was a surprise, and there is no obvious tangible reason for the dissolution that’s been given. I can also tell you that the dot girls of Tokyo are going to remain just as mysterious as they’ve been right up to the end. Everyone is very much remaining in character, and I not only appreciate that, but I love that that’s how they’re going out. The more I think about it, I’m less interested in finding out the “why”, and more interested in celebrating what we knew. In their blog statements, the members of the group seem to be upbeat and positive to travel into their futures. I get no sense of sadness.

The group’s primary manager/producer/visionary also kept the mythology going, explaining that the ethereal manifestations that took the shape of girls will inhabit those forms for only a limited amount of remaining time, and then the end of that time on Earth is here. The dot-chans were always meant to be impermanent, and so they move on to new planes of existence.

If you really want my non-mythology theory, I believe the dots are disbanding for the very best of reasons: Because they’ve largely achieved what they set out to do. Now they can go explore new things in their lives which may or may not include obsessive fans and metaphysical concepts. (There’s also the matter of this being a nearly no-profit industry, but I think that’s a given with most art-driven projects.) Some time ago, it was hinted that there was a new project underway that I thought was going to be a sister-group to the Dot-chans. That project is still happening. So far, almost nothing has been revealed about it except that it’s continuing the innovative high art concepts that Dots have broken ground with. I believe a torch is being passed, and it’ll be exciting to see what’s coming as this new project takes a tangible shape.

I want to tell you dear people reading this: Do not anticipate this event with despair, but rather look forward to the new things to come. Don’t miss the Dots with sadness, but remember them fondly with affection. This is the way of things, and like a passing satellite in the sky, it’s something you should cherish for simply having seen it.

The dot-chans will have their final live on March 24. They will also have additional activities building up to the last show. And since they still have unreleased recorded material and more songs, including another great tune written by Azusa Suga of For Tracy Hyde, (The video posted above!) I also suspect that they’ll have some more musical output to be consumed as well. I know the fans will support the group to the fullest and send them off in celebratory style, because they deserve it.

Now let’s thank Dots for what they gave us and wish them the very best.

The End of an Oshi: Futamaruya Shidare’s Last Live

The Cyclone is a small black box theater in a Shibuya basement which, according to the posters it uses for wallpaper, has played host to gigs by just about everyone over the past 20 years, including Cthonic, Crossfaith, Abigail Williams and every chika idol unit you’ve ever cared about. This past Saturday, it also hosted Yukueshirezutsurezure’s Emergency One Man Live, the emergency being Futamaruya Shidare’s sudden exit from the group.

The Cyclone’s capacity is 300, which seems to have been determined not by some safety conscious fire marshal, but in response to a challenge to see how many people one could stuff into the space, shoulder-to-shoulder, wall-to-wall.

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If You Ever Wanted to Join a Fan Club, This Is the Time to Do It

I don’t usually like to do bias* too hard around here, you guys. It’s not fair to the huge population of idols idoling away in idoldom to be too terrible discriminate in who gets shared and to what extent and with how many words in the intro to make the post longer. But when it comes to Tsurezure, and when it comes to Shidare, and when it comes to the chance to witness a farewell live from an official source, well, I’ll go ahead and endorse those fan club dues all day.

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Kaqriyo Terror Architect and the Exit of Nonamera

Building over from the weekend, the hottest concern in alt-idol these last few days has been the location, state and status of Kaqriyo Terror Architect’s Nonamera.  In the lead up to KTA’s in-store appearances to promote their latest single, “The Forbidden Masturbating“, Codomomental let it be known over the weekend that they had not been able to contact Nona since noon last Tuesday.

After a few days of reasoned, rational and well-informed reactions to this news and no rampant speculation at all, it was announced last night that contact with Nonamera had been re-established and that she had decided to withdraw from the group.

Hey Kerrie! Papermaiden says you can have your curse back.

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What’s Next, HAMIDASYSTEM?

So in the Great Idol Purge of 2019, one of the key casualties for lovers of the dreamy pop sound and highly ambitious multimedia art projects was HAMIDASYSTEM, my personal Idol of the Year for 2018 and a growing presence among the I-like-good-things set. The announcement was a really sad one — how could this just up and go away? we cried through gnashed teeth.

Well, as it turns out, we might need to re-tool those expectations just a little bit, because it seems like the result is more of a “oh okay, neat” than a “/throws self into traffic”.

First up! HAMIDASYSTEM, or something called that, is, uh, kind of sticking around: Continue reading

I See That Debuts Are Still in Fine Shape: Meet LAST IN MY CULT

Okay, shut up, I’m late to the party, so sue me.

So a lifetime ago (Saturday), a buzz swelled up and over the wota scene like

Is … is that a kazoo?

Yeah, folks were popping off about these girls the other day, and for good reason — we get our share of punk idols, but not many who sound like the second coming of punk rock itself with idol as an incidental feature. If I didn’t know any better (time travel isn’t real!), I’d swear that I already own some of their music on a compilation CD somewhere. Continue reading

Shidare Withdraws from Tsurezure. There Is No God.

Weeping.

 Caleb has been so kind as to translate Shidare’s long message, as well as allowing us to post it on Homicidols. The original can be found here.

I, Futamaruya Shidare have decided to withdraw from Yukueshirezu Tsurezure. First of all, I’d like to say thank you and apologise to those of you I have upset with such a sudden announcement, to those who were looking forward to next meeting me, and those who supported the direction we were going in. The 28th November 2018 was 3 years since I had been announced as an initial member of Yukueshirezu Tsurezure. It was 3 years of thinking, worrying, trying, hesitating, fighting and pushing myself as to how we could make Tsurezure a good group, how we could make our concerts good. However, in some respects I’ve realised I found myself thinking I can no longer stand here, or keep walking on. Even so I pushed through and came to where we are now, but now that Kotetsu and Takara have been so kind as to join us, I came to the conclusion that perhaps Yukueshirezu Tsurezure has a better chance going forward without me, and decided to withdraw. It was my dream as a member to show you Yukueshirezu Tsurezure’s songs and worldview. I still believe Tsurezure’s songs have the power to save people. Our weak yet strong songs embrace a lot of people’s isolation and darkness. However, I feel it regrettable and vexing that I overwhelmingly lack the actual strength to convey our worldview, and if I think about it I might have always been stuck in the same place. And before I knew it I had trapped Tsurezure in my negative loop. I, who wanted to be part of a group, had personally confined Tsurezure. And going on, I thought of the possibility of me changing. However the more I thought about it, I decided to stop clinging on as now I have lost the confidence to dedicate everything as a member of the group; as Yukueshirezu Tsurezure. I originally also thought “what if I could change through our tour that begins this February”. Throw away every part of me, kill it, as if it were life or death and if even then I couldn’t change then I’d think again about quitting. However, as the other members are going into this tour frantically trying to climb higher, I found myself in a completely different direction. I felt that this was a betrayal to my other members and the gunjou who so kindly support us. There are many ways of grasping betrayal. To everyone who was looking forward to the tour, I’m truly sorry. Those of you who said you’d celebrate my birthday in February, those who anticipated Yukueshirezu Tsurezure as a 5 member group, and you who said you’d always support me, I’m sorry. I’ve gone so far as to do this for over 3 years, so I have no regrets. Also, I’ll be looking up from here so Yukueshirezu Tsurezure can continue to shine. I pray I can see Tsurezure and the gunjou smiling from here. Thank you for allowing Futamaruya Shidare into your lives, for letting me live. Yukueshirezu Tsurezure, thank you. Do your best, don’t be defeated, take care.

Futamaruya Shidare

All the New Things with the Darkness Girls

It was a big night in Shibuya tonight, friends, as NECRONOMIDOL held their first live ex Hina and Sari, and used it as a platform for much more than just rolling out new members.

But first, of course, the members. As all but completely given away in the teaser photo earlier in the week, there are two, and one of them is known to many of us as Hibiki, formerly of Gokigen Teikoku, now going as Kenbishi Kunogi. The other, Michelle, is previously unknown but for folks who follow the modeling scene.

This is probably the best collection of photos from the gig: Continue reading

And HAMIDASYSTEM’s Dissolving Too

And as if to add insult to injury (though in fact announced first in actual chronology), HAMIDASYSTEM, the people behind this, whose growth and development over the last year in particular has been nothing short of astonishing, will be disbanded in April, pending a complete reboot of the membership:

Nothing lasts forever, certainly not in idol, but I’ll be damned if I didn’t think that this was a group that had a good stretch left ahead of them. FFS, they were my personal Idol of the Year for 2018! After the huge artistic achievement that was putting together prose and song and video and live performance in a single cohesive story, it was easy to see that other, maybe even more ambitious, steps lay ahead. Continue reading

THERE THERE THEREs Done

Is there some kind of evil miasma floating through idol today? It’s just bouncing between already anticipating major idol loss and being buffeted by news left and right by horrible add-ons. Like, yeah, see title:

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