A Little More on that Guso / BiSH Thing

Not news. Please. This is about opinions!

In a number of places (Facebook, Reddit, comments here), I’ve seen questions posed as to what lifting is, why it would be banned, why Guso Drop taking the time to call out another idol group (kayfabe or whatever, doesn’t matter) was a thing, why any of it has any significance, etc.

The short version is this: BiSH banned a lot of the more raucous fan activity from their shows, ostensibly to “go respectable.” GuDro was like “that’s cute, we’ll go even VIOLENTER” and proclaimed themselves the heaviest idols in the world.

Nothing has come of that. BiSH hasn’t been like “why I oughta!” or anything. There are no wars afoot. They will probably share a Gyu-no stage. It’s idol; posture and image are everything.


I get two real takeaways from it.

One, BiSH is deathly serious about Budokan, and probably serious about going even bigger than that. It’s not like they don’t have the chops, and all they’ve done is build on BiS‘s popularity. But what held back their spiritual ancestor? That pinchike culture, the rowdy fans and rowdier idols; I think that the biggest reason that BiS was ultimately declined by Nippon Budokan was the simple fact that they’d be disrespectful toward an iconic, even sanctified*, space.

Two, Guso Drop’s declaration isn’t just bravado; that merging of forces in the punk-oriented underground that has them and Screaming Sixties at the center of it is just one step in what’s likely to be a rather ambitious grab for a serious leadership position in the clubs. They’ll get to the biggest of stages if they earn it, but they’re very happy to be the biggest deal where pinchike really rules, where they can do their shows their way.

I won’t make a value judgment on either side of that (though Watanabe Junnosuke “going straight” is kind of hilarious); BiSH can pull off what most musicians only dream of, and GuDro can do what a lot of them at least say that they want to do and be true to the end. One wants to be famous; one wants to be infamous. And because this isn’t The Three Amigos, neither is good nor bad, but a career choice.

*FWIW, because Nippon Budokan was built as a martial arts arena that includes sumo in particular, it’s actually a site of ritual purification and the like, and people have always been squeamish about it hosting musical acts.

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