Friends, idol has been in tumult this year. Emotional graduations, gut-wrenching disbandments, the usual shenanigans turned up to 11 … it’s been a year of as many negatives as positives, I think, and that’s really hard to do in an industry built on the idea of making people happy. For a lot of us, one of the hardest-to-take moments of the year’s first half was the disbandment of our beloved Dots, who for two-plus years had been the real standard bearer for awesome shoegaze-derived alt-rock songs and enigmatic personalities. It was a blessing, frankly, to be able to host one of the good digs into the concept. Everybody on Team, I think, loved them.
And then they were gone, but it wasn’t long before the suspected successor came along — Ray came into theoretical existence not terribly long thereafter, and while things have been quiet for them in the first couple of months, of course it stood to reason that interesting and creative things were afoot. That’s where we land today, with their effective debut:
I’ve been kind of tingling with giddy anticipation all day today since this bit of news broke via a retweet from the Dots staff twitter. As you may know, the mysterious mind behind Dots has been quietly planning a successor to the seminal experimental and constantly evolving shoegaze idol project, and at last, it appears that the time is nigh for the next event to break out and dare I suggest, likely shatter expectations with an exciting new unit…
It’s RAY, and their plan as stated, is to bring about “Omnidirectional music development and performance”. The group is determined to achieve a fusion of idol with different fields of interest in ways that have never been done before. They’ve also stated that they fully intend to reach out and collaborate with creators on a global level, and they’ve already made good on that promise: Their first international connection will come in the form of music provided by the amazing Austin, Texas shoegaze band Ringo Deathstarr. (This is the part where I went from excited to really really excited.)
It turns out that Ringo Deathstarr toured Japan earlier this year and crossed paths with Dots while making the highly active shoegaze scene there, and well, good things came of it. This is a pretty high-profile beginning that could potentially introduce RAY with a pretty new audience, with a nice bit of indie-cred attached to it!
So who are these RAY girls? A couple of things: This group will be significantly different because the members will not be anonyomous entities. And not only will they have names attached to their faces, but each girl will also pursue solo work, and work on individual projects using crowdfunding to help pursue their goals. It’s a very unique and yet still groundbreaking arrangement that’ll be interesting to see unfold. Here they are…
(I’m not sure if anyone looks familiar to you or not, but I’ll offer you this much… One of these girls is somebody whose eyes you’ve never seen before…)
RAY will be making their live debut on May 1st, and it’s a safe bet that they’ll be highly talked about shortly after. You can follow the group’s twitter account here, their official website here, and also click on the members above to follow them too!
Very cool and very wonderful things are unfolding here, and this is your opportunity to not miss the boat. RAY is gonna show us the way!
It’s a slower day in idol, folks, and I neglected to work the Soundcloud clips into the Weekender, so let’s all gawk at PassCode’s splice of the tracks available on “Ray”:
I previously called the title track itself maybe my favorite piece of new music of theirs since the release of “MISS UNLIMITED”, and this frankly backs that up well. It’s even structured a lot like that (pretty legendary-like, honestly) release, with the catchy Radio PassCode lead, and the Heavy PassCode and Heavy Dance PassCode B-sides. “TRICKSTER”, just in short form, is menacingly shaking its fist at many of my past favorite Heavy PassCode tracks, and I can’t wait to hear it in full. Continue reading →
So I was saying the other day that, despite being aware of things being out there online, I didn’t want to try to soak up “Ray” at all until there was an official release by official PassCode, which finally happened this morning whee!
2018.5.23(wed) Release PassCode 3rd Single "Ray" Music Video公開❗️
Oh man! Those outfits remain pretty dang boss! And the song sounds pretty good in preview form! And it looks like they’re going for their own version of “Orchestra” on that set! Let’s do the whole thing! Continue reading →