Interview with an ex-visual kei record executive

Discussion in '-off topic-' started by Myuu, Mar 6, 2010.

  1. VKHistorian -member- -member-

    VKHistorian
    Joined: 04 Nov 2009
    Posts: 356
    Location: The PC Brigade Headquarters
    Posted: Sat Mar 6, 2010 6:43 pm

    Geisha wrote:
    I keep wondering what was with all the 'etc' on that chart. Does it mean there's more information (more companies) but he doesn't want to tell us?:shock:
    Or maybe he can't tell us coz they'll kill him to death, don'tcha know?;)

    All bands have male fans- and for that matter, female fans who aren't fangirly types only in it for the looks. I think the only reason 'Mr. Satoh' was acting as though only deranged, shallow fans exist is because they're the lowest common denominator, and marketing people like targeting their stuff at the lowest common denominator.

    It did annoy me a bit though. Being a young, female VK fan (mostly 80's/90's/early 00's- I only like a few newer bands. But that doesn't make me any less of a VK fan because old VK is still VK) who isn't the fangirlish type (I like the music and have a moth-to-flame attraction to bizarre things) I found myself wanting to go and find Mr. Satoh and... do something intelligent. "See, we're not all stupid!"
     
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  2. Nocturne -member- -member-

    Nocturne
    Joined: 10 Aug 2004
    Posts: 1237
    Posted: Sun Mar 7, 2010 12:31 am

    I dont know if I believe it or not. I mean, I bet some of it does go on, that Im not doubting, but at the same time, to the extent they make it seem like, I doubt that.

    Plus the guy who is giving said interview seems really stupid and immature. It seems fake to me because of that.

    Im highly doubting that none of these bands write their own music as well, like the whole, this person wrote this song stuff is just a cover up.
     
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  3. eMiNaTiC -member- -member-

    eMiNaTiC
    Joined: 11 Dec 2004
    Posts: 1128
    Posted: Sun Mar 7, 2010 2:49 am

    The real question is where does Mana fit on that chart? ::meev::
     
    #43
  4. MissUMana -member- -member-

    MissUMana
    Joined: 28 Nov 2008
    Posts: 2367
    Location: Far away
    Posted: Sun Mar 7, 2010 2:50 am

    Berserk wrote:
    I second this.

    Mana has been around long enough to know not all fans are fangirls/fanboys and I was indeed surprised at the wide range in his audience's ages at the Paris concert in 2007. I know the same is true in Japan. He is a "serious" artist with a world of his own, he wants to do his own thing so he has his own record and fashion companies, and frankly I doubt he's making tons of money with them. He is a respectable artist who wants respectful fans, so he behaves in a way that commands respect and preserves a sound distance between himself and his fans.
     
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  5. Phantom Pabulum -member- -member-

    Phantom Pabulum
    Joined: 03 Apr 2008
    Posts: 731
    Posted: Sun Mar 7, 2010 7:36 am

    Actually, I think the article is pretty accurate. ::kiwi:: has vaguely mentioned something like that as well.

    http://www.nipponproject.com/en/article.php?article=82
     
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  6. Geisha -member- -member-

    Geisha
    Joined: 05 Aug 2004
    Posts: 2215
    Location: In midnight ruins...
    Posted: Sun Mar 7, 2010 8:23 am

    I've had a look around the net and I'm amused by the (predictably) gleeful comments from VK haters on TDR's blog and elsewhere. As if cynicism, manufactured bands, monopolisation, success/failure by association and other dubious business practices only apply to VK, indie music or Asia:

    http://www.guardian.co.uk/music/2009/fe ... sic-moguls
    http://www.guardian.co.uk/world/2000/ap ... heobserver
    http://www.time.com/time/asia/covers/11 ... story.html
    http://www.koreatimes.co.kr/www/news/ar ... 49933.html
    http://www.guardian.co.uk/world/2009/ap ... ang-jayeon
    http://www.negativland.com/albini.html
    http://gizmodo.com/5417318/my-6247-roya ... -downloads
    http://atlanta.creativeloafing.com/gyro ... oid=175160

    In fact, I'm willing to bet that the bigger the artists and labels are, and therefore the more money is involved, the higher the likelihood for sleaze, but again, that's not the complete picture. There will always be artists (and fans) who value honest passion for music over a quick buck, whether they're into dressing up or not.
     
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  7. catsinheat -member- -member-

    catsinheat
    Joined: 15 Sep 2009
    Posts: 13
    Posted: Sun Mar 7, 2010 12:41 pm

    None of it is surprising and none of it matters. Visual Kei is about fantasy, the glossy, highly-produced surface, covering the grime. That's actually one of the things I love about vk, if you have a goth acting dramatic on stage, but off-stage he is smiling all the time, he is not "selling out" or a "poseur". He is just an actor playing out a fantasy for your enjoyment. I do prefer bands by their sound and not just by their look. But I will say that even the worst-sounding visual band is more fun than the most serious major rock band. Visual kei is also about fun. At least that's always been my outlook on it. On that note, I was a big Vidoll and D'espairsRay fan since they began, they turned major, lost the look and now they essentially make soulless, dull music. Their production value went up, but they are no longer fun and exciting.

    I would also take that site's content with a pinch of salt, the owner is frequently wrong about his facts and he tries too hard to shock his readers. I am surprised that the site is still around! I thought it had snuffed it.
     
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  8. Eville Von Random -member- -member-

    Eville Von Random
    Joined: 31 May 2007
    Posts: 624
    Location: six feet under
    Posted: Sun Mar 7, 2010 1:26 pm

    No wonder VK sucks so much. ::meev:: It was an interesting article although a big part of it seems to be way too exaggerated. I do buy the whole maxi-single marketing bs, and the roadie part makes sense.
     
    #48
  9. Camuflagem -member- -member-

    Camuflagem
    Joined: 04 Apr 2005
    Posts: 2575
    Location: Cliff of Madness
    Posted: Sun Mar 7, 2010 8:43 pm

    Well, that was an interesting read, but actually anyone could write an interview like that based on so many things we read through the years about VK, and personal conclusions about the whole scene. If it is true, i think it might apply to a portion of the scene. not the whole thing, since malice mizer is too unique to fit into this thing. There are many VK bands that sound all the same and could be very well into something like this, still there are not enough proofs.
     
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  10. Elec -member- -member-

    Elec
    Joined: 08 Aug 2004
    Posts: 3598
    Location: Earth's Last Greatest Superhero
    Posted: Mon Mar 8, 2010 2:45 am

    Geisha wrote:
    Jesus Frackin' H. Christ this this this. Geisha I think this hits the nail right on the head. I think you're absolutely right.


    I have to run right now, but here's what I wrote on another site that linked to this:

    "I would break down what this guy says into a few categories, though:

    1) "No duh" truths that are
    a. specific to Japanese culture/business/music
    b. equally applicable to how bands and the people around them operate anywhere in the world

    2) Things that may have been true once upon a time? but seem cartoonish and laughable now?

    3) untruths and twistings


    I can't comment on anything related to big business because we don't have anything to do with it at the moment.
    I'm also typically wary of these expose types of things because the interview subject has the tendency to coat much of what they say with broad "they always" or "everyone" statements, and unjournalistic cynicism. Still, I DO anticipate that some of this will serve to encourage people to take a more realistic view of not just Japan but at talent industry as a whole.

    (we are totally allowed to have girlfriends and jobs and my apartment is pretty nice actually thanks :-* )

    (also I can't speak for every single band and I do know of some iffy examples but in our case we absolutely do write everything and made every single creative decision on the songs we recorded in the studio)"


    In the large scale of things, we are a super tiny group so I obviously can't make any statement about actual business practices. I can do my best to answer specific questions I guess, though, at a later time.
     
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  11. VKHistorian -member- -member-

    VKHistorian
    Joined: 04 Nov 2009
    Posts: 356
    Location: The PC Brigade Headquarters
    Posted: Mon Mar 8, 2010 11:24 am

    Camuflagem wrote:
    I'm sort of going with what Geisha (and according to Phantom's post, Kiwi) said- that it's the big companies rather than the little ones. I know it's just about money in the high levels- that isn't news to me. As a case in point I remember seeing Simon Cowell (who has shares in Sony) more or less admitting that he only produces music for money and hasn't got the slightest interest in the art itself. It shows, as well. People outside the UK, you have no idea how lucky you are not to share a country with the X Factor ::hora::

    Anyway, to put this in terms of VK, I only have to look at PSC (who are, I believe, one the biggest VK labels, if not the biggest) to see that they're no good, and TBH there isn't very much said in that interview that I wouldn't believe of them. I wouldn't be surprised if Undercode have dabbled as well, knowing what ::kisaki:: can be like.

    But when I look at, say, Sherow, and... no. Can't see it, I'm afraid. I don't see how small labels without tons of money could do half this stuff even if they wanted to. You can't do the whole bribing livehouses thing if you aren't a millionaire and are in charge of a grand total of four bands, for example.

    I agree about Malice Mizer completely. If they were just a cash cow then I wonder about the mental health of whoever was in charge with them. If what Mr. Satoh says is true and most VK fans in Japan really, truly only care about who's the hottest member, then why randomly switch your band's genre every other album? Another band I'm doubting is Fatima- I'm listening to them now and they seem to have very much their own sound. They don't sound carbon-copy in any way at all.

    And I second what Elec said about the vaguely plural statements. Things like this have a knack of making certain exaggerated implications without actually lying.
     
    #51
  12. Dogfight -member- -member-

    Dogfight
    Joined: 10 Apr 2006
    Posts: 100
    Location: Florida
    Posted: Mon Mar 8, 2010 1:29 pm

    On my initial post I was unable to fully voice my opinion due to my limited access to the internet. I basically wrote up a report pointing out the errors, inconsistencies, and contradictions in this article, and posted it in my lj.

    http://flyingfoxbat.livejournal.com/381.html

    Here's the meat of my post:

    As for as I am concerned this article is a fraud. There is just to much information that you can contradict by doing a little research. This guy is trying to fool people
     
    #52
  13. holylampposts -member-

    holylampposts
    Joined: 12 Feb 2006
    Posts: 2145
    Location: @ the urinal with Klaha
    Posted: Mon Mar 8, 2010 2:04 pm

    "Speaking of major labels . . .Wasn’t there a case where a – a certain musician left his Visual band and became a famous pop star, whose songs sold millions of records? And the musicians in his old band had written some of the songs which turned out to be these hits? And when the musicians complained about not getting paid for these very lucrative songs, they wound up missing or damaged in some way?"

    Gackt?
     
    #53
  14. Iskanderia -member- -member-

    Iskanderia
    Joined: 30 Jan 2007
    Posts: 2506
    Posted: Mon Mar 8, 2010 2:10 pm

    That's what I was thinking too, except for the "missing or wounded" part.

    I like the following:

     
    #54
  15. Nocturne -member- -member-

    Nocturne
    Joined: 10 Aug 2004
    Posts: 1237
    Posted: Mon Mar 8, 2010 2:11 pm

    um, which members of MM went missing or were damaged in some way? Nor did he use their songs. I dont think we would ever see MM performing Vanilla
     
    #55
  16. VKHistorian -member- -member-

    VKHistorian
    Joined: 04 Nov 2009
    Posts: 356
    Location: The PC Brigade Headquarters
    Posted: Mon Mar 8, 2010 2:16 pm

    holylampposts wrote:
    I thought that at first too, but I've never heard anything about a court case of any sort, and as for 'missing or damaged'... well Kami died, but Mana, Kozi and Yu-ki were all OK as far as we can tell.

    Can't say I can think of anyone else it could be referring to, though. Strange. Unless... didn't someone from Luna Sea start a pop career? I don't know much about them, do they fit?

    "Missing or Damaged" :grin: - sounds like it's referring to parcels that got lost in the post.
     
    #56
  17. holylampposts -member-

    holylampposts
    Joined: 12 Feb 2006
    Posts: 2145
    Location: @ the urinal with Klaha
    Posted: Mon Mar 8, 2010 2:17 pm

    Well Klaha is missing, and we all know what happened to kami....
    Mana doesn't speak anymore, either.
     
    #57
  18. Nocturne -member- -member-

    Nocturne
    Joined: 10 Aug 2004
    Posts: 1237
    Posted: Mon Mar 8, 2010 2:28 pm

    I think that may be going a little too far with it. Especially the Kami thing. I highly doubt any of them would go as far as death. Especially according to the guy since apparently the members had no power or say in anything.

    Plus they said they didnt do anything to people on major labels, which MM was on at the time.


    Singer from Luna Sea did more pop stuff.
    Plus Inoran, J, and Sugizo all have solo careers
     
    #58
  19. Dogfight -member- -member-

    Dogfight
    Joined: 10 Apr 2006
    Posts: 100
    Location: Florida
    Posted: Mon Mar 8, 2010 3:15 pm

    holylampposts wrote:
    I hope your joking and not actually trying to imply that Gackt killed Kami. I know there are a lot of Gackt haters here, but I expected no one would sink that low.
     
    #59
  20. Einherjer -member- -member-

    Einherjer
    Joined: 15 Dec 2004
    Posts: 1773
    Posted: Mon Mar 8, 2010 3:43 pm

    ^well he did perform at his highschool in a pretty distasteful publicity stunt. who knows. we sure as hell don't. we can only speculate. maybe he killed him, maybe he didn't. It's been years since his death so we need to learn how to forget and forgive. The only thing we know for sure is Gackt is a mysterious man of many talents and trades. It is as though he is from out of this world.
     
    #60