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Naw, it's quite understandable and common knowledge there are v-kei/j-rock fans without jobs or barely make ends meet so they can't afford to purchase any Japanese music. It can get very expensive with shipping costs, etc. I just feel like, "Hey, I saved up the money to purchase this, because I like to do my best to support my favorite artists and it's the only way I can being a foreign fan." Then it bugs me when I am excited about purchasing something etc., share that info on a forum, and people bug me about sharing it and I say no. Then they treat me like shit. Sorry that I don't believe in illegal downloading? Does that make me better than anyone else? No. I am no better than anyone else. I just won't share, and there are other people like me with probably similar opinions.

The irony here is simply astounding. Saying that you don't believe in illegal downloading is silly. You believe in it whether you choose to admit it or not. Without illegal downloading, neither this forum nor the vast majority of the VK/J-rock/Japanese music fanbase would exist overseas.

Whether you choose to purchase music or not is your own perogative, but keep the following in mind:

1) Purchasing music doesn't make you any more or less than a fan.

2) If you know beforehand how people are going to react to you talking/gloating about what releases you've bought, why talk about them in the first place? If you're going to get angry at people for requesting releases from you, then you can solve that problem by simply ceasing to talk/post about those releases. That's like waving a steak in front of a lion and acting surprised when it attacks you. Regardless of your intentions, what you're essentially doing is teasing.

3) If you're an overseas fan that purchases Japanese music, there's a damn good chance that your purchase won't do much to "support" whatever band you're buying from. This is ESPECIALLY true if you're purchasing music released through major labels. Hell, most bands make their real money from performing live, not CD sales. I know you want to feel special like you've done some kind of good deed for buying music instead of downloading it illegally, but I'm sorry, you don't get a cookie for spending your hard-earned cash on ridiculously overpriced Japanese CDs. To be honest with you, you'd probably be supporting these bands more by distributing their music digitally.

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Guest mitsubana

The irony here is simple astounding. Saying that you don't believe in illegal downloading is silly. You believe in it whether you choose to admit it or not. Without illegal downloading, neither this forum nor the vast majority of the VK/J-rock/Japanese music fanbase would exist overseas.

Whether you choose to purchase music or not is your own perogative, but keep the following in mind:

1) Purchasing music doesn't make you any more or less than a fan.

2) If you know beforehand how people are going react to you talking/gloating about what releases you've bought, why talk about them in the first place? If you're going to get angry at people for requesting releases from you, then you can solve that problem by simply ceasing to talk/post about those releases. That's like waving a steak in front of a lion and acting surprised when it attacks you. Regardless of your intentions, what you're essentially doing is teasing.

3) If you're an overseas fan that purchases Japanese music, there's a damn good chance that your purchase won't do much to "support" whatever band you're buying from. This is ESPECIALLY true if you're purchasing music released through major labels. Hell, most bands make their real money from performing live, not CD sales. I know you want to feel special like you've done some kind of good deed for buying music instead of downloading it illegally, but I'm sorry, you don't get a cookie for spending your hard-earned cash on ridiculously overpriced Japanese CDs. To be honest with you, you'd probably be supporting these bands more by distributing their music digitally.

 

I know purchasing music doesn't make me more or less of a fan. And for fans that don't/are unable to purchase music are no less or more of a fan either. I apologize for not expanding or articulating my thought process better. I see it has been misunderstood due to my own fault and no one else's.

 

I used to download illegally. Without it I wouldn't have known about visual kei. Without Internet most of us fans wouldn't know about visual kei and without sharing music or music videos on youtube etc. I wouldn't have discovered the bands I've come to love. I know that... I'm not dumb.

 

I know that a lot of artists (if not most) make their money from lives as opposed to CD sales; being that I don't live in Japan, the only way I personally feel I can support my favorite bands is purchasing their music. Yes, it sucks that it is expensive and overpriced and that my "contribution" most likely doesn't help boost their profits. I like to have the CDs for the lyrics, having been studying Japanese for a few years and wanting to improve and understand my favorite songs. And I've also just been the type of person that prefers physical copies--the same for me goes for books--and this addiction, one could call it, has developed over the years greatly. Probably unhealthy for my wallet, to be honest. 

 

I appreciate you for pointing out my unwise actions in sharing information on forums (i.e. "I just preordered so-and-so release" etc.) I honestly just get into fangirl mode, because I get excited to listen to new music and so on and want to tell someone. Where I live there are no other fans that I know of. I only interact with fans online. I've realized as much as I may want to fangirl over such things, it is not wise. I don't do it on purpose to cause a ruckus. I am just an idiot. It is my fault for any way I react when I reveal such information and fellow fans would like me to share the music. It is my fault for feeling angry and/or upset towards fellow fans that do not purchase music etc. for whatever reason. Maybe to a certain degree (or a lot) I have subconscious elitism that says, "Well, why don't you buy it instead of begging me to upload it?" And that's something I need to work on. 

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When someone brags about a release being good to a group of people who didn't listen to it, what are they supposed to say about it anyway? They don't have any opinion, so the only thing they can say is to ask for it, so they can listen to it and tell you if they like it too, or not.

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Imo she (or he) can talk about whatever she wants. What's next, "Don't you scrobble your stuff in last.fm because maybe someone will see it and ask you for it?" I understand people ask for stuff, but I don't see a reason why they would get mad if the person they asked decides not to share it. As well as I don't see a reason to get mad because someone asks you for something *shrugs*

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I doubt vk bands have much money from the foreign sales. Foreigners are also ignored by many bands (there are CDs or services available only in Japan), while people in Japan can go to the instore when they buy the CD, for example. Foreigners don't get anything else, than the physical CD and bonus items sometimes. It's so easy to complain about people who don't spend money, but these bands totally don't care about any other market, than Japan, so the sales outside of Japan probably don't matter to them. I've seen many bands open to foreign audience and happy people all over the world listen to them, but Japanese are so closed about everything. Sometimes I feel like a worse kind of a fan, because I can't even participate in everything fun.

 

^people really need to start to remember this. bands dont care about foreign sales at all. of course that doesnt mean that they dotn care about foreign fans, they might like that they have some fans from overseas, but cd sales are as unrelevant as it can be.

that doesnt mean that no one should buy cds, i do that too very very often, but the whole" yea im supporting the band " thing is just bullshit. because its just not true.

 

about the sharing thing: its all about the attitude as others said.

i had some pretty bad sharing requests over the years and its perfectly fine to be mad then. not about the fact that people try to request, but mad about the way they "ask" for it. some even demanded me to share something, they werent even asking.

i never bragged about anything, because thats entirely stupid. i dont understand when people brag about having something. i for myself even removed my cd list from last.fm , because i just didnt want to get all these requests anymore.

but yea that subject is all about revealing what you have. i dont think one should be annoyed about requests if one decides to post a review or talk about the release in the artist thread for example. if you think its annoying then just dont post about it at all. easy as that.

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As someone else touched on and I'm not positive it's unpopular, but it might be... I don't consider "illegal downloading" theft.  Theft is the deprivation of something from its original owner with no intent to return it.  IN this case, nothing is being stolen because someone bought the item in the first place and is simply sharing it with others...albeit a lot of others.

 

Downloading music on the internet is exactly the same concept (just a lot easier) as going to the library, checking out a CD and then ripping it and keeping it or re-burning it.  Or, back in the day, using a double cassette recorder to copy one cassette to a blank one.  The only difference now is it's a LOT easier to do this type of copying, sharing, etc.  

 

It's a giant myth perpetuated by governments and record labels, stepping on our rights and no one should be buying into it.  If I buy something, pay MY hard-earned money for it, no one, NO ONE, should be able to tell me what to do with it.  If I want to share it with one person or dozens of persons, that's my right dammit.

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Imo there's nothing wrong with someone asking you to share a specific release, however, the fault can be at two sides. I've seen cases where the purchaser acts like an elitist dick, and I've seen cases where the purchaser nicely said that they didn't want to share, which resulted in over-dramatic reactions from the requesters.

 

Imo everyone has the right to request a rip of a CD, but that doesn't mean you're automatically entitled to it. As long as nobody acts like a dick/elitist snob interaction should be just fine.

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Imo there's nothing wrong with someone asking you to share a specific release, however, the fault can be at two sides. I've seen cases where the purchaser acts like an elitist dick, and I've seen cases where the purchaser nicely said that they didn't want to share, which resulted in over-dramatic reactions from the requesters.

 

Imo everyone has the right to request a rip of a CD, but that doesn't mean you're automatically entitled to it. As long as nobody acts like a dick/elitist snob interaction should be just fine.

 

Yeah that's what I meant

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Imo she (or he) can talk about whatever she wants. What's next, "Don't you scrobble your stuff in last.fm because maybe someone will see it and ask you for it?" I understand people ask for stuff, but I don't see a reason why they would get mad if the person they asked decides not to share it. As well as I don't see a reason to get mad because someone asks you for something *shrugs*

Exactly, so if I'm the only white person to bother buying something from some trashy no name indie band. I shouldn't talk about it because someone might get upset. Fuck those people and their butthurt. I know there's a difference between flaunting but I don't ever recall seeing anything like that on MH.

 

For the most part the only nasty responses I've received from people where on Last.fm and at one point good old Livejournal. MH most people aren't that bad and I'm fine with trading.

 

Basically my stance on downloading is, I do download but almost rarely these days but I still grab something here and there. I wouldn't even be a fan of the music I like today if it wasn't for downloading. However I am mature enough to know that music isn't free and I should do my part as a fan to support not just the artist but the industry as a whole. Sure label eats up a lot of the profit but that profit is usually then turn around into covering studio time, touring costs and so forth. If VK bands came to my city I would do what I do now with metal bands and just wait until they come through on a tour and buy their release then when they'll get the most back from my purchase, but since I can't do that with VK bands. At least my support helps keep the label, producers, distributors afloat so that they can sign and produce more artist.

 

With that said, my second stance on downloading is if it's a super duper poor man indies band, I don't feel comfortable sharing the material since it'll effect them the most as oppose to some major band or even successful indies artist like something from PS Company or even formerly UCP. Someone else will post that stuff anyway, so I don't bother sharing from those artists.

 

I prefer sharing music from inactive bands anyway, especially lesser known acts since their stuff is mostly long forgotten.

 

Anyway, I'm posting from the most annoying keyboard ever so if Im not clear on something, how about you try typing on this piece of shit tablet keyboard.

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Everything that Arithmetica said is pretty much what I was trying to convey. I'm not trying to be elitist or say anyone that purchases cds is better than other fans, I'm just saying it is still the only way to support when you can't go see live bands and saying that it doesn't support the musicians directly is bullshit. Like Arithmetica said, even if the label eats the profits it's still part of the music industry I enjoy. Especially when the bands from America just can't pull off the visual styles as well as the Japanese bands do. (Look at those tacky cookie cutter paste emo/scene bands like Black Gay Brides and Semen on the Disco Floor.) Sharing shit is fine and dandy and that's how I got into this to begin with but I still wish more fans made an effort to at least buy a release every once in a while is all I'm saying. Hell I buy MP3 albums of bands I don't even enjoy that much just so there is more support in the foreign digital market as well, so hopefully more stuff gets added in the future. Don't understand how it's elitist to want and like spending money on VK. This morning I even pre-ordered The GazettE's new single off Amazon even though I doubt I'll appreciate it after those lackluster previews of yawning. 

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The trend of doujin artists starting new bands to get away from the stigma of lolimetal is generally stupid

 

I can understand artists that want to separate projects based on musical ideas and the goals that they want to achieve, but lately it seems like every doujin band and their grandmother is starting up a new unit. ELECTRIC RED, Kokuyasou, Kurogane Lab, Stratiotes, Vaguedge dies for dies irae, etc., have all moved on to creating new bands (Noxious, Vermillion-D Alice Syndrome, the countless notes, Regnum Caelorum et Gehenna, Imperial Circus Dead Decadence, etc.) and with the exception of Noxious they're all exactly the same as the previous project. They play the same style of music, they plaster anime artwork all over the place, they sell them at Comiket...I don't understand why you would start a new band to get away from the stigma of your previous band when the only difference is that now you write your own music which sounds very similar to the music you used to cover.

I understand it even less when some circles actually put out original music under the name of the circle and then decide that they need to start a new band to continue to do that, and then they selectively ignore half of their output  *coughcoughThousandLeavesandKokuyasoucoughcough*, and then they never return to their old circle. It just makes things more confusing.
 

I don't care if you cover Touhou themes for a few albums and then move on to creating your own music. Just keep it all in the same family. The number of projects I've had to keep up with has doubled over the last 1.5 years and it's becoming really exhausting to remember what artist is releasing what kind of music under what circle.

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This should be unpopular... I sometimes love vocalists who can't sing well.

 

I mean Ai to shi wo shitta hi by Saga wouldn't be the same if the vocalist wasn't wayyyyyyy off key through the whole song^^

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^ I don't think that's so unpopular. :'D I think quite many of us love vocalists who have no idea about singing. The difference lies between them who admit it and them who don't.

 

I admit my favorite vocalist has fucking no idea what he's doing, and you can hear it. But he's having fun alright, and that's what affects me. I think it's cute as well. And it makes them unique. Like, half of the VK artists who can sing sound exactly like some other VK artist who can sing. But those who can't sing never fail quite the same way as some other person fails. :'D

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I actually like genres. I hate it when People think, that they are so individual and have a huge knowledge when they say, that music is music and you can't put it into a specific direction. Genres comes in handy. How am I supposed to search for (example) "brutal technical death metal"  when there would be no genres? There are specific directions in music wich I prefer... so I can search easily for that direction ;)  Sorry for my bad english...

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I agree with Yuugi!

Not that I'd never appreciate vocalists that are great singers with skills in a more 'classic' sense. (I love Ryuichi Kawamura. I like Gackt and Klaha in Malice Mizer. I love Jui in Vidoll.)

But for the most part I go for bands in the good vocalist/bad singer scheme because it just sounds less formal and more interesting to miss a few notes here and there.

Punk-ish 'barking' like Kiyoharu and Hakuei or melodramatic sluring like Kyo (until a few years ago) and Hisui is often much more suited for a visual kei band. Of course it depends on the band's image and of course a high percentage of vocalists isn't brilliantly bad but just normal bad and I don't like that either. (Sounding bored or too shy or copying someone elses style in an embarassing way.)

Well my favorite example for this is Syndrome. Their sound didn't change that much with Asagi joining and they still made brilliant songs but Asagis skilled voice completely ruins their atmosphere and they sound totally boring to me compared to the original line up with Tatsuyas 'weak' vocals.

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I actually like genres. I hate it when People think, that they are so individual and have a huge knowledge when they say, that music is music and you can't put it into a specific direction. Genres comes in handy. How am I supposed to search for (example) "brutal technical death metal"  when there would be no genres? There are specific directions in music wich I prefer... so I can search easily for that direction ;)  Sorry for my bad english...

 

I understand this mentality, however there are a lot of genres that only scratch the surface of the music, leaving everything else still up to you to discover. Not to mention the bullshit genres that doesn't really even tell anything about the music to begin with... Sure, it'll work if I hear something obviously blues rock or speed metal or... house or whatever. But if the band is shittily categorized as alternative or indie or avant garde or something equally ambiguous? For example, is Vkei a genre? What kind of music does it represent, and if I'd hear one random Vkei band and thought "I want more", and searched for more Vkei, how many of those bands would be anything like the first band?

 

Genres would be awesome if they worked and were thought out much more thoroughly. It's a good idea, but has quickly turned into a huge mess. Especially these days, music is not as easy to flop into the genre lockers as it might have been - unless you're into something really basic (basic not being a negative thing) and easily categorized.

 

Obviously I'm just talking about my experiences based on the music I listen to... but way too often I've tried to find more of stuff like X, but the genres that they supposedly represent offer nothing of the like.

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Phantasmagoria and the Kiryu aren't kote-kei: just stop. There is nothing 'old school' about 2008, and neither sound nor look like they're from 1996.

 

kote-kei =/= dress up in costumes

 

But kotekote doesn't neccesarily mean 'oldschool' or '90s'

It simply describes the way the bandmembers dress and present themselves. In that case VERY elaborate, rather dark/goth, heavy make up, long hair, lots of black or white and contrasting bold colors and a dramatic/serious biz attitude on stage.

So yes, some looks of both, especially phantasmagoria (kiryu are a little different because of their 'traditional' vibe, I think...?) can be considered kotekote.

 

While many popular 90s bands can't. Kuroyume are not kotekote. Pierrot are not Kotekote. Baiser are kotekote. But the big kotekote-craze wasn't even in the 90s, it's rather around 2001 I think.

 

A definition that includes the music and fits typical 'oldschool' bands better is 'jariban'.

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I have a strong suspicion that almost every vk interview is run according to a certain default that determines what both sides will say. Seriously why else would they sound so much the same and boring as hell?

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I wouldn't consider Phantasmagoria to be kote either... but let's be honest: there is no such a thing as "kote kei". It's a term invented by foreign fans who disliked the way visual kei changed ca. 2005-2008 and put their nostalgia glasses on. I am not an exception, as I prefer the old bands over the new ones. But I don't think "Kote kei" is a genre or a useful label... if you ask four fans of old visual kei music what it means you will probably get 10 answers. Some people only sort the indie bands from the Matina, Key Party and Soleil label there, others claim that all visual kei from 1992 to ca. 2002 is Kote and then there are people who say all the try hard goth bands are kote kei, while the others classify just as old visual kei or "light/soft visual kei".
I still have to find sources that indicate that this term was ever used by japanese people and haven't found any so far. While Light or Soft visual is a valid term you see used by both japanese and foreign fans Kote kei isn't. let alone that no 90s band would call themselves Kote - neither did the word exist back then nor will those old bands ever see themselves as that.

It's still useful though and helps a lot to find possible new (and old) bands that have the popular indie visual kei sound from the late 90s.

But considering how artificial this term is it's also very hard to say what type of bands belong to it. I can definitely understand and see why people would call Kiryu "Kote kei". Sound technical they don't really sound like most modern visual kei bands (or neo visual kei... but that's another questionable term). When I listen to them I can find many similiarities with the visual kei groups from say 2002-2005. Of course that's not really 90s or old... and I don't think costumes play an important part in the kote kei thing either. Not all bands in the 90s were as effimenately dressed as Madeth gray'll or Aliene.

 

@Hyura As said above, Kote kei is extremely vague... i'd say early Kuroyume are definitely "Kote" as they were basically the origin of all those dark, goth influenced bands that followed after (and the whole Nagoya kei trend). But on the other side there are people claiming Baiser aren't Kote kei, because they are 8especially in their later era) too soft.

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But kotekote doesn't neccesarily mean 'oldschool' or '90s'

It simply describes the way the bandmembers dress and present themselves. In that case VERY elaborate, rather dark/goth, heavy make up, long hair, lots of black or white and contrasting bold colors and a dramatic/serious biz attitude on stage.

So yes, some looks of both, especially phantasmagoria (kiryu are a little different because of their 'traditional' vibe, I think...?) can be considered kotekote.

 

While many popular 90s bands can't. Kuroyume are not kotekote. Pierrot are not Kotekote. Baiser are kotekote. But the big kotekote-craze wasn't even in the 90s, it's rather around 2001 I think.

 

A definition that includes the music and fits typical 'oldschool' bands better is 'jariban'.

I've been under the impression that 'kote-kei' describes anything before 2002, aside from nagoya stuff like Merry Go Round or Phobia (even though they looked like everything else at the time and were a bit different musically). I'm thinking dark makeup, crappy photoshop, blurry pictures, feathers, poofy hair, do-it-yourself blood paint, and the occasional picture that's only in black and white, etc. That's why I said Phantasmagoria weren't: they were much more elaborate, used their look in a much more dramatic setting for their shows and photo shoots, and more or less change drastically between releases. I'd say the only other band whose done that in a more extreme fashion was Malice Mizer.

 

I guess it's more of a problem of a lot of people considering old vkei to just be matina / key party / soleil (if you're lucky). 

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@Hyura As said above, Kote kei is extremely vague... i'd say early Kuroyume are definitely "Kote" as they were basically the origin of all those dark, goth influenced bands that followed after (and the whole Nagoya kei trend). But on the other side there are people claiming Baiser aren't Kote kei, because they are 8especially in their later era) too soft.

 

Yes, it's really vague. But not so much because there is no 'criteria', but rather because you can't really categorize a band. You can categorize an outfit, a photo, a pv, a phase of a band but not a band altogether, like say phantasmagoria because they represented a slightly different image for every release.

Phantasmagorias Mikansei to guilt is pure kotekote kei so yes, they are (sometimes) part of this category, even though they might not be all the time.

 

When I first heard that term it was japanese fans using it and my 'criteria' for it is solely based on what they used it for. Or at least used to some years ago. So it might be forgotten by now, but it wasn't the overseas fans that invented it.

Kotekote actually means 'heavy' and they way I understand it it applys to 'heavy, dark visual kei'

 

And that was usually for the image and appeareance of a band, not that much about the music. It can be applied to visual kei fans, too. Some people I met would call a 'traditionally' gothy and/or elaborately dressed bangyaru a 'kotegya'.

I just tried googling コテコテ系 and it did come up with quite a few results, too. Like here or here

 

The definitions here are

 

-A band's look and atmosphere

-Heavy visual kei

-classic visual kei

-grotesque, decadent, aesthetic imagery

-lots of black and lots of leather and vinyl, very elaborate costumes

-very big and colourful hair

-Motives like crosses, blood, flowers....

-Try hard goth and try hard dark

-They are never really fashionable or really stylish, their appeal comes from 'too much' of everything

 

To me kuroyume just isn't real kotekei. They are the ultimate base of everything that is, but Luna Sea looked more kotekote then they did. At least for the most part. And by that criteria Phantasmagoria absolutely fits in.

 

This is also a term that wasn't invented earlier than 2002 and I think it was, since the very beginning, used for active bands as well. So I don't see a reason not to use it for the ones around today.

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Eh in the context kotekote actually means over the top, but whatever it comes down to the same thing. I'm pretty damn sure that it's a japanese term, that's where I kept coming across it. And there really isn't such a thing as 'too elaborate' with kotekote, so basically what Hyura says.

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