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Six Hours
Of classic j-rock!


Pierrot 5 Years Ago
The Pandora album isn't as good as Celluloid, but likewise it isn't as horrifically bad as that indies Pierrot disc (which isn't even listed in their official discography) with Kirito on guitar and wearing a pointed witch's hat.


Missalina Rei
Not that bad! But the dude in the upper right, with the outlined lips... doesn't it look like he's sticking out his tongue? Ruins the whole album for me.


Some Band
Performs near the South Exit of Shinjuku Station for a respectable throng of passersby. Hmm, and no drummer...


Ai (b) and Roiyu (g)
At McDonalds, in search of drums, vocals, and fame!


At Shinjuku Station's North Exit


Toshiya and Kyo
Singing about death, probably!

September 17

Silence and ex-Missalina Rei

now playing: Pierrot's Pandora's Box (1997)

Busy day!

First, I got a new pair o' shoes so's I can look well dressed shold the need ever arise ("Geez, -another- Grammy, oh, okay, I'llbe at teh awards ceremony tomorrow!)... There's a place called Hikari no Shoes ("Light's Shoes?") about 10 minutes west of Shinjuku Station, way past Kinokuniya, that has up to size 35. Sometimes I fit into 30s, sometimes into 32s, sometimes neither, depending on the brand, but otherwise, nomatter what your size, shoe-shopping in Tokyo is about the same as in America save for one crucial difference: all the shoes are out, so you can try them all on -- there's no reliance on some shoe salesman doofus having to run into the back to get another pair of shoes if the first pair doesn't fit. So the whole process so much easier.

So I spent $200 on a nice pair of shoes, which is a lot (for guys anyway... for you girls, i dunno, $200 seems like the ~average~?!) But hopefully they'll last a few years.

After that, I still had three hours to kill before meeting up with Roiyu at Like an Edison; Roiyu's the guy that emailed me about drumming for a X-Japany / Deg-gy Luna Sea-y band he's forming.

So I hit Liberty, just on the off chance they might have something, which lately is rare. But as it turns out, not only do they have Dir en grey's first EP Missa, but they also have Pierrot's early album Pandora's Box (now playing), both used, and neither of which I've never seen elsewhere, ever. Picture me leaping into the air like Superman flying away... there goes Gordon lunging for more rare CDs and tripping over other customers again!

So with both those discs firmly in hand ($20 and $18 respectively), I further explore the store. X Japan has just released their entire pre-Dahlia video catalog on DVD, just last week, I discover. The 1992 Tokyo Dome live album On the Verge of Destruction is doing jumping jacks up and down, trying to get my attention, and it does... and it's used?! How can that be?! Or a promo version without liner notes? Whatever it is, it's Y2300 less than the Y8000 that it originally sold for. <grab!>

I also toy with the idea of getting the Y3200 (orig. Y3990) Visual Shock vol. 3 as well, but, well, I do have -all- the videos on VHS already, so it's not like I -need- it!

A few shelves below, that damn Y6800 Luna Sea The Final Act DVD set I'v mentioned in previous diary entries is taunting me. So I pick that up too (my actual thinking being, hey, a plane could crash into me tomorrow, so I might as well watch this tonight). Way to stimulate the economy, Osama bin Laden you shit-eating turd! It's got pretty much every good song Luna Sea ever did, and I don't have any other live videos of them, so... oh wait, I have Rewind! Lol, okay, fuck!

Anyway, add to this nice stack a used Missalina Rei EP (which will be important later, so remember it!), and that's a nice $200-worth of j-rock. Time for the next store!

But the next store, Recofan, is lacking; nuthin' good, except some Aikawa Nanase used live DVDs which I know I'll see again, chepaer, elsewhere, eventually... and I have the VHSs and/or VCDs of Live Emotion 1997 and Foxtrot Live 2000 anyway... plus I'm already $400 in the hole today, thanks!

And it's 5:20, so I've got like forty minutes to hit Mari's Rock and Like and Edison before meeting Roiyu. These stores are required visits for any j-rocker in Shinjuku. Mari's Rock has nothing, except some La Mule singles selling for $13 instead of the original $15, which I debate getting, but... ugh, only two songs per single?! Bah!

And at Like an Edison, I try to find a specific Due le Quartz disc for a certain friend, but can't... and Rock Indies across the way is apparently going out of business, so there's no way I'm gonna find it in there either. And it's 6pm, time to meet the fellas, so i go outside and wait...

and wait...

and wait...

and Roiyu comes along only 25 minutes late, with Ai in tow; we head to "Makudon" (McDonalds) for some food (I get the Teriyaki Burger Set -- love that stuff!)

We talk for an hour+ about bands and gigging, but with difficulty because my Japanese is as bad as their English (worse, actually!)... but clearly the music is dead-on exactly what I wanna be doing (X Japan, Luna Sea and Dir en grey) and they play some impressive work in/from their past bands from a portable MD. And in the course of sharing our musical histories, I bring out my awesome haul of CDs:

Roiyu: Ack!
Ai: Aargh!
Me: What?!
Ai: Missalina Rei!
Me: Yeah, um, its, um, for a friend!?
Ai: No, ach! <laughter>
Me: Whuh?! <laughter>
Roiyu: <laughter> Ai is ex-Missalina Rei!

So that's pretty cool.

After a good 75 minutes of discussion we break. We discuss how long I've played, how long they've played, bands we like, gigs we've had, how many songs we've got written, what kinda makeup I'll do (Ai seemed pretty keen on getting me into dreadlocks as well for some reason...) ...and whether I know any vocalists.

So it went okay, but already I'm worried whether it's gonna work -- that damn language problem and everything (they seemed to feel the same way). But I suggested they download my songs and if they wanna audition me, just email me. So it went well, but I'm not gushing with positivity over it... but one never knows, does one? It's too bad you don't get to know who your future good friends/bandmates will be right as you meet 'em for the first time, isn't it?

On the way back, I saw another band practicing outside Shinjuku Station's North exit... for 15-year-olds in tacky spacesuits, they really weren't bad.

Other news: Bishop (that band I auditioned for way back when -- but still hadn't officially joined or not joined) is breaking up -- check out www.worldwide-bishop.com for deets. And visual kei flags at half-mast tomorrow, please. :(


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