Japanese pop music is widely regarded by experts to be terrible. Doing nothing to dispel this reputation is visual kei, a term that represents both a style of music and a particularly insane style of dress that both the bands and fans embrace with frightening gusto. The music itself is largely forgettable, warmed-over 80s hair metal. But the costumes look like the aftermath of an orgy between lolitas, goths, vampires and anime characters where everybody had to hurriedly get dressed in the dark.
The result is an unholy hodgepodge of teased hair, industrial drum-fulls of white makeup and more lace than a doily convention. It would be crazy enough if all they did was wear this stuff to concerts and nightclubs, but like the lolita, they aren't afraid to strut down public streets in clothes that Prince would find undignified.
Aspects of visual kei style have even infiltrated regular fashion, as regular young Japanese women wear flouncy scarves in their hair and young men wear ass-hugging jeans. Yes, in about five years, real-life Japan will look exactly like a Final Fantasy cutscene.
Follow Geoff at Twitter and he'll promise not to dress like a Victorian school girl. Except for special occasions.
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