A Celebration of Visual Kei
We’re not letting the lock-down keep us down, this bento we rock with lots of Visual Kei music, rockin’ food recipes, musical Japanese lessons, free stuff, news from the motherland of anime, Japan and our monthly anime challenge, and believe us there is much more in this bento to fill the anime-hungry. We are YOUR anime and Japanese Cultural news source. Itadakimasu!!
Hot News of the Month
Anime delayed due to COVID-19 crises
Because of the coronavirus and the planet wide quarantine many anime series including My Hero Academia and One Piece are delayed. The whole global entertainment industry was greatly impacted thanks to the COVID-19 Pandemic, movies are either delayed or pulled indefinitely, TV series had to stop mid-season and the anime industry suffers as well, Series like the new Digimon series, Pokemon 2019, A Certain Scientific Railgun T, Infinite Dendogram, A3! Season Spring & Summer, Healin’ Good PreCure, Asteroid in Love, The Misfit Of Demon King Academy, and the second seasons of Re:Zero and Tsukiuta. The Animation is delayed as well as movies like Fate/stay night: Heaven’s Feel III. spring song, Doraemon: Nobita’s New Dinosaur and the Violet Evergarden movie.
Dubbing of anime series has also been delayed according to Funimation. Here is a breakdown on the series affected:
Listeners, starting with Episode 2
All additional planned Spring 2020 SimulDubs
BOFURI: I Don’t Want to Get Hurt, so I’ll Max Out My Defense, starting with Episode 9
Hatena Illusion, starting with Episode 8
Infinite Dendrogram, starting with Episode 8
Nekopara, starting with Episode 9
Smile Down the Runway, starting with Episode 9
Toilet-bound Hanako-kun, starting with Episode 9
Asteroid in Love, starting with Episode 5
Case File nº221: Kabukicho, starting with Episode 21
Darwin’s Game, starting with Episode 9
My Hero Academia, starting with Episode 85
Black Clover, starting with Episode 124
ID: INVADED, starting with Episode 13
Sorcerous Stabber Orphen, starting with Episode 10
A Certain Scientific Railgun T, starting with Episode 8
APPARE-RANMAN!, starting with Episode 4
Diary of Our Days at the Breakwater, starting with Episode 4
The Millionaire Detective – Balance: UNLIMITED, starting with Episode 3
No Guns Life Season 2, starting with Episode 1
Sword Art Online Alicization War of Underworld Part 2, starting with Episode 1
Rock Giant donates millions
Yoshiki is a legend. He is the frontman of J-Rock and Visual Kei legend X Japan but his also known for his generosity, that he always donate generously to organizations in need. The last couple of months he donated money to help typhoon victims in Japan, he donated money to the victims of the Kyoto Animation arson and helped with the Australian wildfires.
Now, with the Corona Pandemic, he once again drew from his endless stores of generosity and made sizable donations. Last month he, now living in Los Angeles for the past twenty years, donated a large sum of money to the US-based Meals on Wheels, and later in April, he donated 10 million yen to the Japan-based National Center for Global Health and Medicine with the hope that it will support medical staff battling on the frontlines against the COVID-19 virus.
“Here in the US, coronavirus has killed over 40,000 people and unfortunately, now I hear the disease is spreading in Japan too, with no signs of slowing down. Many people in all different industries are currently suffering due to the outbreak, including the entertainment industry which I am in. However, I think the people who need the most support right now are the medical staff who are dealing with the coronavirus on a daily basis. I’m making my donation with the hope that it can help, even if it’s just a little.” Yoshiki stated.
It is also important that everyone stay safe and inside:
“More important than my donation, however, is everyone’s efforts. Everyone practising self-restraint and staying indoors is a hundred, maybe a thousand times more important than my donation.”
To meet find out more about this generous star we share an interview below followed by another video of him performing with Sarah Brightman. We also have more on Yoshiki and the band X Japan in our Kawaii Kulture insert.
X Japan's Yoshiki - Wikipedia: Fact or Fiction
"MIRACLE (Sarah's Version)" feat. YOSHIKI
Kyoto Animation Demolition update
Near the end of April, it has been reported that the demolition work on Kyoto Animation’s 1st Studio Building finally concluded. The anime house’s lawyer stated that a decision on what will happen to that plot of land will be done “after meeting and considering the viewpoints of the bereaved families and those involved with the local community.
Last July a devastating fire decimated Kyoto Animation’s Studio 1 building, which killed 36 people and injured 33 more. A man who allegedly used gasoline to set the studio ablaze was apprehended by Kyoto Prefectural Police. The Kyoto Prefectural Government is currently in the process of determining the distribution of 3,314,438,000 yen (about US$30 million) in donations for the injured and the families of the victims of the arson attack.
Studio Ghibli hands out free stuff!
Tired of letting people see your chaotic bedroom or untidy living room in conference calls during the lockdown? Studio Ghibli got your back. They are releasing wallpapers specifically designed for use in video chat backgrounds. Now people can look at scenes from From Up on Poppy Hill, Whisper of the Heart, Kiki’s Delivery Service, My Neighbour Totoro and other, instead of that crack in your wall during a conference call.
There are horizontally oriented backgrounds for smartphones as well. You can download the backgrounds here at Studio Ghibli’s site, and be aware they plan to release more backgrounds soon!
Kawaii Kulture: The origins of Visual Kei
While stuck at home during this lockdown period, one of the best ways to pass the time is by listening to music. Let’s give you a quick introduction to one popular Japanese music genres you can immerse yourself in including everybody at AnimeFanatika’s favourite… Visual Kei!
Visual Kei to the outsider may look like eccentric, flamboyant quasi-feminine or androgynous music enthusiasts, and that they may be but the Visual Kei genre is as artistically expressive as the Goth music subculture and as passionate as the Glam Rock movement of the 70’s. Visual Kei is a free spirit, that encourages its people to submerge themselves into live-style, music and fashion.
The term ‘visual kei is believed to originate from the band X Japan’s slogan: “PSYCHEDELIC VIOLENCE CRIME OF VISUAL SHOCK”. Earlier terms for visual kei includes “bijuaru shokku kei” (visual shock style) and “okeshou kei” (make-up style).
Visual kei had its start in the mid-1980’s, with bands such as Seikima-II, X JAPAN, D’ERLANGER and COLOR. These bands were inspired by the punk, glam metal, and gothic-rock movements of that era. These first visual kei bands set the style and spirit by putting emphasis on shocking visuals, elaborate stage performances, eccentric hairstyles, and flamboyant attire, traits that became the codex for the musical movement.
A decade later in the mid-90s the Visual K scene really blasted off. Shazna, Malice Mizer, La’cryma Christi and Fanatic Crisis earned themselves the combined nickname ‘The four heavenly kings’. Fans of Visual Kei became more passionate and immersed in the subculture, cosplaying to look like band members, bringing gifts to concerts, basically starting many trends and etiquette in the genre.
At the same time, other Visual Kei outfits like Luna Sea and Glay toned down their look. Trying to appeal to the mainstream market, Japan X’s members started to pursue solo careers, which led to their break-up in 1997. This is how Visual Kei was born and its first decade shaped the music into what we know today as Visual Kei. It is a vast genre with many genres within, a vast lifestyle with many angles to explore. Just be open to finding whatever resonates with your heart.
X Japan's Yoshiki Talks Visual Kei Movement
YOUTUBERS REACT TO VISUAL KEI (Japanese Rock)
Spread the Word & Word of the Month: Music
Ongaku – Music
Don-na ongaku ga suki desu ka? – What kind of music do you like?
Kurashikku ga suki desu – I love classical music.
Dono kashu ga suki desu ka? – Who is your favorite singer?
Watashi no sukina bando wa “bītoruzu” desu – My favorite band is “The Beatles”.
Nanika gakki o hiki masu ka? – Do you play any instruments?
Piano o hiki masu – I play the piano.
Kono CD wa ikura desu ka? – How much is this CD please?
Kurashikku on gaku wa arimasu ka? – Do you stock classical music?
Rokku wa arimasu ka? – Do you have rock music?
Nanika osusume no ongaku wa arimasu ka ? – Can you recommend some music for me?
(Oto ga) ōki sugiru – It’s too loud!
Kare wa kireina koe o shite iru – He has a beautiful voice.
Kono kyoku ga sugoku suki desu – I really like this song.
Kono kyoku wa suki desu ka? – Do you like this song?
Alternative – orutanatibu
Anime – anime
Blues – buruusu
Classical – kurashikku
Country – kantorii
Dance – dansu
Folk – minzoku
(Video) Game – (bideo) geemu
Hip Hop – hippuhoppu
Jazz – jyazu
Metal – metaru
Pop – poppu
Rap – rappu
Rock – rokku
Word of the Month
Ongaku – Music
Visual Kei: Anime OST Special
We replace our usual AMV of the month with our Visual Kei: Anime OST Special. A lot of anime has Visual Kei songs as opening or closing theme songs like Attack on Titan Season 3 ‘s Opening song Red Swan performed by X Japan frontman Yoshiko and Hyde, vocalist for bands such as L’Arc-en-Ciel and Vamps. The song grabs you by the heart, proof that when two Visual Kei Titans do a theme song for an anime, there is energy and power in it.
YOSHIKI FT HYDE RED SWAN
"Red Swan" (Attack on Titan anime theme) - Official Lyric Video
Kanon Wakeshima unleashed her inner Visual Kei Lolita to bring us the haunting closing song for the anime Vampire Knight called ‘Still Doll‘.
Still Doll by Kanon Wakeshima
Vampire Knight Ed- STILL DOLL
No strickly Visual Kei, Porno Graffiti’s Melissa of The FullMetal Alchemist is a powerful opening song, and the Original Music Video is filled with Visual Kei imagery.
Porno Graffitti - Melissa
Fullmetal Alchemist Opening (Melissa)
Recipe of the month – Kohakutou, Japanese Rock Candy
Kohakutou is a beautiful Jewel-like Japanese candy made from Agar Agar and translates to “amber candy”. Kohakutou is made by pouring flavoured jelly into a dish and allowing it to set before cutting or tearing into crystal shapes. The candy develops a beautiful crunchy outer crust after a few days but remains delightfully chewy inside.
KOHAKUTOU, Japanese Rock Candy
AnimeFanatika Top anime 5 recommendations for 2014
2014 was a fruitful anime year with too many good choices. Series that became huge hits like Tokyo Ghoul, Kiseijuu: Sei no Kakuritsu (Parasyte) and Terra Formars dominated the screens. These titles are still legends that come up in many conversations when anime fanatiks discuss their favourites. We bring you our list of anime recommendations, some of them popular, some of them AnimeFanatika staff favourites, we also name some honourable mentions such as the Pupa, Blade and Soul, Rail Wars! (Which is our Anime Challenge this month), and Tokyo ESP
No Game No Life
Kiseijuu: Sei no Kakuritsu (Parasyte)
May Anime Challenge: Railwars!
Our anime challenge this month is Rail Wars! It is an action anime with harem elements. Rail Wars! is an anime adaptation of Rail Wars! Nihon Kokuyū Tetsudō Kōantai (lit. Rail Wars! Japanese National Railways Security Force) a Japanese light novel series written by Takumi Toyoda with illustrations by Vania 600. The anime was animated by Passione, aired between July to September 2014. The opening song is “Mukai Kaze ni Utarenagara” (向かい風に打たれながら) and is sung by Minori Chihara. The ending song is OVERDRIVER and is sung by ZAQ.
The anime is set on a parallel world where Japan never privatized its national railways. A high school boy, Naohito Takayama dreams of a future where he will work for the Japanese National Railways in comfort. He gets assigned with three other high schoolers in the Railways Security Force which includes Aoi Sakurai, a troublemaking girl and man-hater. And to add to his problems there is also an extremist group called ‘RJ’ plotting to privatize the Japanese National Railways.
Birthday of the Month: Chōji Akimichi
Chōji Akimichi, a member of Konohagakure’s Akimichi Clan, the future Sixteenth Head of the Akimichi after his father. He used to be looked down upon as a child because he was not good at a game called ‘Ninja’, a game which is a cross between tag and hide and seek, and shurikens made of sticks and cardboard. Kids berated him but Shikamaru Nara stood up for him and they became the best of friends when they grew into fine young shinobis they both became part of team Asuma with Ino Yamanaka. They are also close friends of Naruto.
Choji has the unique ability to increase any of his body parts ten times its original size. Also with his ability to increase his size, he has another unique ability called Meat Tank which allows him to roll toward his opponents at high speeds with his increased body. Chōji’s name is made up of the kanji for ‘butterfly’ and ‘second’, and Chōji manifests butterfly wings made of chakra. His clan name ‘Akimichi’ means Autumn road’ referring to the time of harvest as well as the streets where food vendors are selling food! Chōji Akimichi’s birthday is on the 1st of May.
Unfortunately, due to the lockup, our Anime Meetup for May is cancelled until further notice but keep checking every week for our weekly anime challenge to keep you entertained during the lock-down period.