This October is going to get a little crazy in Tokyo.
From October 14th to October 16th, Visual Japan Summit 2016 powered by Rakuten will be held at Makuhari Messe Halls 9-11 in Tokyo. The event will feature bands from across the visual kei rock spectrum, and promises to attract upwards of 100,000 fans.
In case you’re not familiar with the genre, visual rock (more commonly referred to as “visual kei“) is an Japanese music genre that began in the 1980s. Basically, some rockers styled their hair to gravity-defying heights and applied makeup in a style similar to Western glam rock (think KISS). Take this fresh new style, spice it up with innovative lyrics, mix in a booming economy, and you’ve got a hit! The genre has been around for decades, but it’s recently seen a bit of a resurgence — and this event features some of the original progenitors of the movement, including X JAPAN, who is generally credited with coining the term “visual kei” (taken from the cover of their album “X” that featured the catchphrase “Psychedelic Violence Crime of Visual Shock”).
In fact, X JAPAN went on to become one of the most famous bands in Japan throughout the 90s until their temporary hiatus in 1997. Luckily, they restarted as a band in 2007, and they’ll be the ones headlining all three days of Visual Japan Summit 2016. Also announced to perform are GLAY, LUNA SEA, and Golden Bomber. All bands have topped mainstream music charts in Japan throughout their careers.
Perhaps the most surprising lineup announcement so far is hide with Spread Beaver — and it’s not just because of the name. hide with Spread Beaver was the solo project of hide, originally a guitarist in X JAPAN, and his untimely death in 1997 was one of the determining factors in X JAPAN’s hiatus. His prowess on guitar and his unique style have have ensured his legendary status that persists even to this day. In fact, if you ask nearly any Japanese person if they know who hide is, they’ll probably say yes!
So, the big question is: How will hide and Spread Beaver perform without, well, hide? We’re not 100 percent sure of this, but it may or may not involve the use of a hologram. (Or at least what they’re calling holograms these days.)
Want tickets? It might be a little pricey. One-day passes will cost you 14,000 yen (USD$137) and a three-day pass will set you back 39,000 yen (USD$382). There are also one-day VIP passes available for 60,000 yen (USD$587) that include guaranteed seating and a sweet director’s chair. As of now, the VIP passes are completely sold out. You can enter a pre-sale ticket lottery between August 12th and August 15th through Rakuten.
There are also hints that the event will be broadcast for viewers worldwide. Check the official website or any of their social media accounts to keep up-to-date.