Japanese rock musician decides to get old-school, starts a career singing enka

The history of Japanese music is long and storied, and contemporary artists, be they J-pop artists or grindcore bands, fill only a few chapters. Of course, they happen to be some of our favorite chapters, but we’re just saying, there’s a lot to discover!

One genre that has long been a favorite in Japan but hasn’t gotten as much attention overseas as, say, Hatsune Miku, is enka. A modern take on Japanese folk music, enka is probably most popular with older generations — but that hasn’t stopped one extravagantly dressed visual kei/rock drummer from giving it a shot!

Check the bizarre music video for Tsukasa Mogamigawa’s major label debut and get ready to shout “Maaaatsupoi poi poi!”

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You’re almost definitely not as genki as this 84-year-old man – meet China’s “Yoga Grandpa”

If you recall, we delighted you all once before with a story about an incredibly genki granny from Japan who is capable of bending her aged limbs into a variety of contortionist poses. But we reckon this yoga grandpa from China has got her beaten!

Check out this man’s incredible flexibility in this series of photos that will have your jaws hanging and your joints creaking in sympathy!

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Maiko beauty secrets: Skincare tips from Japan’s apprentice geisha

Just as with full-fledged geisha, it’s customary for maiko, as geisha apprentices are known, to wear a layer of white face powder, called oshiroi. But those who’ve seen one of Japan’s traditional entertainers close up often marvel at their smooth, healthy skin, remarking that they would be just as beautiful with all of those cosmetic coverings washed away.

But in much the same way that their polished speech and refined mannerisms are the result of years of training, maiko also have a careful routine they follow to keep their skin looking as delicate and pleasing to the eye as it does.

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Kagoshima’s aquarium exhibit leaves visitors with a chilling message

Kagoshima Prefecture is located at the southernmost tip of the island of Kyushu, Japan. Among other things, it is famous for its sweet potatoes, Shirokuma shaved-ice dessert, and Sakurajima, one of the world’s most active volcanoes.

Another popular attraction is the Kagoshima aquarium Io World. The aquarium features much of the prefecture’s own marine life, and even has a giant tank which holds a giant whale shark.

One tank in particular, however, is leaving some visitors with an eerie, chilling feeling. As one Japanese Twitter user recalls of the exhibit pictured above, seeing it as a child left her with goosebumps and still haunts her to this day.

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Sailor Moon hair bands, scrunchies will keep your hair back while you wash off your MAKE UP!

Today, we’ve got news about a newly unveiled anime-themed “Bath Time Collection.” And while things can usually get pervy in a hurry when you combine the words “anime” and “bath,” we’re not talking about an inflatable waifu cushion to take in the tub or a waterproof anime boy toy poster to hang in your shower.

That’s because this is Sailor Moon we’re talking about, and Japan’s most successful magical girl is keeping things as classy as she always does with this new line of scrunchies, hair bands, and hair clips.

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Sayonara, sushi: 21 little things that people miss after leaving Japan

As a reader of RocketNews24, chances are you already have a pretty big soft spot for Japan. You may even already be living in the Land of the Rising Sun or have plans to fly out just as soon as circumstances allow.

But sometimes, even when we love a place with every fibre of our being, we just can’t stay forever. Family anxiously awaiting our return; work commitments; financial constraints and more mean that, at some point or other, many of us have to wave goodbye to Japan and return to our respective homelands.

Some of the things people miss about Japan will be immediately obvious, but others tend to sink in only a few weeks or months after returning home. Today, we’re taking a look at 21 of the little things, in no particular order, that Japan does so uniquely or so incredibly well that foreigners really start to pine for them once they finally say sayonara and head home.

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Pepsi Strong: Newest drink in the Pepsi line-up is ready to kick your butt

There’s something about the heat and humidity that just makes you sleepy sometimes. With summer just around the corner in Japan, beverage company Suntory has a plan to keep you on your toes all day long: Pepsi Strong. More bubbles and more caffeine.

Say goodbye to your afternoons of droopy eyes and nodding off at your desk!

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Yokohama Baystars get a shojo manga makeover in a bid to wow female fans

There’s only one thing better than a life-size replica of your favourite Japanese baseball player, and that’s a manga-style life-size replica.

A large-scale illustration of eight players from Yokohama DeNa Baystars goes on show this week in the run-up to a special festival for the Baystars’ female fans.

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DBZ’s Android saga re-imagined in cheesy but awesome science fiction form

For a lot of us growing up, watching anime on Cartoon Network after school was our version of science fiction pulp stories from the mid-1900s. Given that pulp fiction and anime share some commonalities, it’s a bit odd that they haven’t been mashed-up more often. If the results turn out as good as this Dragon Ball Z x science fiction-style book covers, more artists should be looking to pair the two up.

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“Solid Sato” sneaks into Starbucks under cover of cardboard box, Metal Gear-style 【VIDEO】

Our resident oddball writer Mr. Sato loves his coffee, so much so that he finds it impossible to pass by a Starbucks without stopping in for a quick coffee break. The only problem is that he tends to favour “girly” drinks like frappuccinos, and lives in fear of being spotted by friends and acquaintances enjoying one.

The solution? Sneak into Starbucks underneath a cardboard box, Solid Snake-style, and see if the baristas will serve coffee to a cardboard box. Check out our video to see how he did!

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Win props and Survey Corps uniform from Attack on Titan film just by test-driving a Subaru!

It looks like car manufacturer Subaru has their hands on some neat swag that was used on set for the upcoming Attack on Titan live-action film and, for some reason, they’re willing to just hand it off to one lucky Subaru test-driver.

You don’t need to own a Subaru or even like Subaru to be eligible to win an authentic Survey Corps uniform actually worn by a character in the film, plus an actual, “working” 3-Dimensional Maneuver Gear set – the piston-operated grappling hook setup that Survey Corps heroes sport in their fight against the series’ titular titans.

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Gotta deep-fry ‘em all! Pikachu cutlet on a stick being sold by Korean food stalls, online shop

There’s a balancing act involved in creating snack foods in the image of a beloved children’s character. Take too few cues from the original design, and your customers won’t be able to recognize the character, thereby missing out on all the fun. On the other hand, go too far in the opposite direction and you end up with something like these cutlets from Korea, which make it look like you’re literally eating the flesh of Pikachu.

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Guinness World Record-breaking strawberry found in Fukuoka and it’s delicious

Everyone loves strawberries, right? Not only are they pretty hard to beat on the deliciousness scale, but they have the ability to ward off allergy symptoms and can even occasionally taste like peaches. Not bad for a little red fruit–or big red fruit if we’re talking about the Guinness World Record-breaking strawberry recently harvested in Fukuoka.

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Shimane Prefecture will give you a house…but only if you promise to stay for 25 years!

As you may have heard, the population of Japan is getting older and smaller. While other (smarter) people have debated the problems and complexities of this issue, we do know one thing: It’s left a lot of prefectures without many young people. Some places are celebrating when the community has even a single wedding, but Tsuwano in Shimane Prefecture thinks they’ve hit upon an idea for injecting some new, young blood into their town. They’re giving houses away for (kind of) free! Of course, there are a few stipulations…

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Hero lady apparently saves guy from groping accusations by posing as girlfriend

Japan is pretty famous for its packed trains that invite occasional chikan (groping incidents). Luckily, in light of improving rights for women in Japan, the law of late tends to come down pretty hard on train gropers. Assuming a victim or a witness to such a crime speaks up about it, a perpetrator typically faces immediate arrest at the next train station and can probably expect to do some jail time.

While this system works pretty well for the most part, it’s not unheard of for some unlucky guys to face career and life-destroying consequences after being falsely accused of groping. One Japanese Twitter user, in fact, posted a series of Tweets detailing a close call he had himself, relating that he was almost certainly destined for the slammer if he hadn’t been saved by the alleged victim herself.

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Mr. Sato tries to get ladies by transforming into a creepy version of L’Arc-en-Ciel’s Hyde

If you’ve been reading RocketNews24 for a while, you’ve probably come across the name Mr. Sato. If not, let us explain. Mr. Sato is a hilarious reporter for our Japanese sister site. But he’s so much more than just a writer; Mr. Sato is a teacher, a foodie and is also very patient.

One thing Mr. Sato is not, however, is married.

At roughly 40 years old, Mr. Sato wants to be impressing the ladies, so he’s tried time and again to transform himself to look like different famous people. But so far, nothing has worked. He has a new model in mind, though, that he thinks is fail-safe…

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Feeling stressed? These videos of stubby Munchkin kittens at play will hug your soul

Have you heard of “gogatsu-byou“? Also known as “May Sickness” this is a Japanese term used to describe the particular malaise that descends upon many people in May, after the excitement of the new school year and hiring period in April.

But what better way to combat a case of the blues than with adorable kitten videos? If you’re feeling low, we reckon these capering Munchkin kittens will cure what ails you!

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Women, gamers, and foreigners all show up to be samurai for a day at Sengoku battle reenactment

Some people in Japan have no more than a passing interest in the country’s long and fascinating history, which is at least partly the fault of how the subject is taught in schools. Many history classes place a heavy emphasis on memorization of the exact dates and years of important events, leaving less time for studying the people and motivations behind them.

There’s been a recent surge in history buffs, though, especially in regards to the Sengoku, or Warring States, period which lasted from the mid 15th century until the very start of the 17th century. But it’s not crusty old historians leading this charge, as a recent samurai battle reenactment had women making up some 40 percent of the volunteers, whose ranks were also bolstered by video gamers and foreign residents of Japan.

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Japanese realtors are reaching out to customers with the most nonsensical ads ever 【Pics】

Moving house in Japan is tough business. Even to find an apartment, you need to go through a real estate agent, and all the upfront fees you have to pay to move in can cost you five times or more what your monthly rent will be.

That’s why choosing a good agency who will work with you to get the best deal is important. But with so many agencies around, how can you choose? Some realtors may offer deals like 50% off their agency fees, but others are taking a more… creative approach to draw in customers, by adding silly, ridiculous, or just plain nonsensical catchphrases on their property ads.

Join us after the jump for such advertising gold as: “You can be a big daddy too” and “Decent of the fashion monster”.

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In pictures: Everyday life in China and Hong Kong, 1868-1872【Photos】

Scottish travel writer and photographer John Thomson was one of the first western photographers to travel to the Far East. In the latter half of the nineteenth century, he travelled extensively in China, recording what he saw for posterity.

From elaborately dressed brides to working fishermen, Thomson captured landscapes and city scenes, people and places. The result is a captivating insight into the everyday lives of Chinese people almost 150 years ago.

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