14.10.17

The Goods, the Uglies, the Almosts, the Derivatives, and the Inexplicables

Tour goods for The Day in Question 2017 Tour are now up!!! Fish Tank helpfully informed us of this by email a full HALF-HOUR before the goods went on sale on the B-T Web Shop, so props to Fish Tank for their wow so plan ahead much professional very advance warning wow. 

(Fish Tank's all like: "I jorb good, I'm Japanese! We Japanese company robot drones all jorb good! Not only are we all at our desks five minutes early every day, we are never late on email!!!!1" Japanese companies: you can spend years not working for one and yet still hate them! But we digress.)

Anyhow, this has got to be both the weirdest and laziest and yet simultaneously amazing set of goods we've ever seen pulled out of Buck-Tick's management's collective creative ass (wow what a sizzling whopper of a metaphor), so let's dive in, shall we?

First, the Derivatives! You may have learned in your calculus class that a derivative is a rate of change, but we're here to tell you that a derivative is also a merch item which is definitely being recycled from a previous tour.

Recognize these, anyone?

Guitar Pick Set: 2200 yen. Comes in a pouch shaped like Daruma-Maimai. The character on the front is "Hisashi," which is indeed Imai's first name, but it also means long-life, and is commonly seen on Daruma dolls for that very reason. A+, despite being a derivative.


Imai Hand Towel: 1000 yen. It's 100% cotton, a claim many of these other goods cannot make.

Daruma Dolls of Buck-Tickistan: 7000 yen. They're each 5cm tall and made in Japan, a claim many of these other goods cannot make, as most are made in China. However, there's just one problem with these Daruma dolls: you're supposed to use them at New Year's to make a wish. Color in one eye, and make your wish. When your wish comes true, color in the other eye. But these dolls already have eyes! Still, they're an improvement on those creepy Dokudanjou Beauty figurines, so we'll take what we can get.



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Now, on to the Uglies!

Halloween Dolman T-shirt: 4200 yen. That is a stupid amount of money for a one-size-fits-all t-shirt that will definitely show your bra if you're a lady and definitely show your titties if you're a dude. It even comes with an "As Seen on TV" sticker on the sleeve. Would have been cool if it said "Buck-TRICK or Treat!" But it doesn't.



Pointless Rubber Bands: 500 yen each. These are only sold at the concert halls on the day of the show and they will sell out instantaneously just for that. Too bad, because we really wanted that Kanazawa puke-colored one. Dammit.


 Lazy CD Jacket T-shirt: 3800 yen. Tour dates: yes. Screen printed block on the front: no. Design laziness level: 200%. Likelihood of getting stained with wine at the party after the show: 99%. Comes in small, medium, and large. Made in China, because of course it is.

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Luckily, there weren't too many uglies. But there are a fair few Almosts.

Polyester Sex Toy Pouch: 2500 yen. The upside is, at 18cm long and 12cm tall with an 8cm gusset, it's definitely big enough to hold at least one dildo, maybe two. The downside: you'd be carrying your dildos around in a case printed with a pattern of the fangirliest bedroom in Buck-Tickistan, so everyone who sees this case will know exactly who you're jilling on (too bad this case isn't big enough for five dildos!!!!) Allow me to kindly queue up "My Thighs & Your Thighs" on the turntable and edge out of the room.



Official Acchan-chan Swarovski Leather Bracelet: 14500 yen. The upside: you can definitely use this for light bondage in a pinch! The downside: we know why it says A. S. on it. But he, and we, know it would be so much cooler if it said A. S. S. instead. (Go count up the number of times Mr. Sakurai has mentioned butts in his lyrics if you don't believe us.)



Long Blouson: 9500 yen. The upside: it's all black! There are no pesty colors marring its lovely darker than darkness! It's hipster goth rivethead garb which you you could wear to the Cloak and Dagger Festival! The downsides: delete that logo off the front, please please please please please. The day we buy a Buck-Tick hoodie is the day YOU make a Buck-Tick hoodie without a fucking logo on the front. And who the fuck uses the word "blouson"?


 Official Imai Leather Bag: 5800 yen. The upside: it has the same design as the Parade festival tenugui (enlarge the photo to see), and its sleek darker than darkness majesty remains unmarred by any ugly logos or god forbid, pale grey suede. You could carry this around and yet nobody would know you're secretly a Buck-Tick fan. The downside: it's not actually leather. It says right there on the site it's made of Polyurethane. Fail!



Hot Air Balloon Big T-Shirt: 4500 yen. The upside: it's black. The hot air balloon is cool. The downside: 1) this is too much like that silly Atom Miraiha lightbulb and also it only comes in one size. 2) We resent the continual mixing of too many colors on the same shirt. Pick a color and fucking stick with it. 3) As Mr. Sakurai demonstrated at the Parade festival, this cut of t-shirt is the worst cut of t-shirt Mr. Sakurai has ever worn. The website isn't showing the weird side vents, mullet back, or the unflattering way this shirt will make your microphone monitor look like a butt tumor. You're welcome.


Hot Air Balloon T-Shirt Dress: 4500 yen. The upsides: it's black. The hot air balloon is cool. We like t-shirt dresses and this one is a better cut than the stupid big t-shirt above. The downsides: 1) the neckline is too high to show your cleavage, therefore, what's the point? 2) It only comes in one size. 3) There are still too many colors on here. 4) There should have been two hot air balloons, one over each boobie.

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All right, that's all well and dandy... but how about the Inexplicables? Kids, please tell us, why on earth would you ever make these items into tour goods? We won't judge you for buying them. We're just honestly curious here.

Key Holder: 1500 yen. This looks like it came out of a gacha-gacha machine. This is goods from the Cheaper than Cheapness tour. This is ready and waiting to choke your baby. Make it stop.


Kurumi-chan Plastic Bags: 1200 yen. This is a box of bog-standard plastic freezer bags, printed with the Buck-Tick logo. It costs 1200 whole yen, which is 1100 yen more than you'd pay at the hundred yen shop like a normal human. We hereby declare that these freezer bags should never be used for anything except the following: 1) dead mice to feed your pet snake, 2) dog poop, 3) drugs, the more the better.

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And now for the boring part: the Goods.

Kurumi-chan Zip Tote: 3000 yen. This'll put your fandom on display, but it's hard to identify immediately as a Buck-Tick item on the train, and the zipper at the top will keep your groceries dry or your panties from blowing away in the wind.


Kurumi-chan iPeen Case With Shoulder Stap: 4500 yen. Kurumi iPeen Case: 1. Hide Grey Suede Sacosh: 0. Usefulness at a nightclub: 100. Bonus points if you stuff this with a Kurumi freezer bag full of drugs.

Face Towel: 2000 yen. At 34 by 85 centimeters, this is a good size. It's a little corporate, but it's black and white only, so it'll do.


Halloween T-shirt Dress: 4200 yen. At least ten years after B-T started releasing holiday t-shirts, they finally, finally made one that looks nice!!!1 Hits the spot between cutesy and spooky! That witch is hot, we'd make out with her! We'll wear it every year on Christmas from now on!

Yutaka Yu-men Noodles: 500 yen. Made in Japan real authentic instant ramen. Comes with ingredients list which is provided on the website, so people with allergies, rejoice! Also, dig that gay bear in a fundoshi. That is some serious Serious Bear. Bonus points that these noodles explicitly state "for home use." Like, where else would you use them? Care to enlighten us, Yutaka? 

Serious Bear, Omiya Edition: 2000 yen. Zomg as if Serious Bear couldn't get any more gay serious. For those of you who don't know, the kanji on the back of his happi coat says "Omiya"... so... is he doing a different one of these for every venue? Because that's exactly 36000 yen to collect them all. Please, we want to see a hardcore Yutaka fan amass a complete collection, just for the sheer insanity.

Hoshino Hidehiko "Kiss Me" Lip Cream: 600 yen. Includes soybean oil, sunflower oil, aloe vera, shea butter, cocao butter, and tocopherols. It doesn't say what it smells like, so let's hope it smells like Hoshino Hidehiko's sweaty armpits. Kiss from #SexyBeastHide himself not included. Not suitable for use as lube.


Hoshino Hidehiko "Touch Me" Hand Cream: 2500 yen. The full list of ingredients is on the web site. Unfortunately, this isn't quite the all-botanical artisanal hand cream you'd hope to see for sale on the scrubbed-wood side table of a hipster cafe in Jiyuugaoka where everyone is wearing a pale grey suede sacosh. But it's getting there. Again, it doesn't say what the fragrance of this is, so let's hope it smells like #SexyBeastHide's manly musky mojo. Black magic not included. Not suitable for use as lube.


Imai Hisashi Lunch Eater Pasta Box: 3200 yen. This lunch box is especially designed for pasta and it even comes with one of Imai's favorite pasta recipes. For those of you who didn't know: Imai's main non-music hobby is cooking. He throws parties for his friends and cooks fancy food for them. We're going to hazard a guess that he knows his shit in the kitchen. We just hope these recipes aren't for shiso hot pepper pasta! Bonus points to that throwback to the lyrics from "BUSTER." We saw what you did there. We love you.

Yagami Toll Doramu Sake Set 1: 2500 yen. This is Toll sake, Fancy Bar Version! Those of you who went out for sake with Cayce that time... omg remember these things? How to use it: pour the sake into the glass till it overflows into the wooden cup. Keep pouring till the wooden cup is in danger of overflowing, too. Bend your head over the table and slurp the sake off the top before lifting the glass out of the box for the toast. This is 100% real and true and excellent Japanese pub etiquette (we are actually not joking! Sake is a serious matter! We would never lie to you about sake!!!) Just please, don't drink Doramu out of this glass. It has a cat with a mohawk on it. It deserves better.


Yagami Toll Doramu Sake Set 2: 3500 yen. This is Toll sake, Cheap Pub Version! Fun fact: one time, Toll left his sake at the bar and Cayce drank the rest of it because FREE SAKE and maybe it had Toll's spit in it too actually that's a lie that story never happened OR DID IT? Anyway, whether or not the story is true, the sake was totally in a tokkuri (carafe) like this one, because this is Japanese dive bar chic. Holy fuck it has Toll's face on it. With Harry Potter lightning bolts. Could this be any more class-kitsch-awesome? We may be hyperventilating. We may die.

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Oh, what... Cayce forgot something?

Forgot something, you say?

Nope, we didn't forget it.

We just passed out dead before we could post it, and had to take smelling salts and a pinch of mama's secret wink wink washing powder from out of our Kurumi iPeen case bag in order to recover.

Why is the font color blood red all of a sudden?

What's with all this organ music?

What's that smell?

Oh, right, it must be the...

Atsushi "Mr. Mortalite" Sakurai Art Nerd Mortality Vanitas Renaissance Death Shroud the Goths Are All Jealous and Nosebleeding Black Blood Over This Sexual XXXXX Auto-Erotic Scarf-on-Head Scarf Fetish Museum Shop Display Case Art Scarf: 85,000,000 yen. Ahem. I mean, 8500 yen. We... we're... we're... drowning... naked... in a tub... of black vodka... and pomegranate kernels... the black candles are melting slowly all over our skull candelabrum and we can't even reach the incense burner to light some more incense... our body feels filled with the fretful wingbeats of a thousand moths and butterflies, fluttering the fruitlessness of existence which must all too soon fade to dust as the flowers withereth... here we lie in stupor, a hypnogogic dream-state as heady, sultry and intoxicating as the world beyond the opium pipe... the wine of passion drips from our lips, yet we are struck dumb  as if by the razing current of a lightning flash... O dawn, red flame of Truth! Life flashes past in but an instant, yet yea, Art is Eternal.

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...we're dead. Drape this over our corpse, pls.

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honestly, we've never cried so hard over a tour goods design.

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...*sniffle* The Mortal was the best band.

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As always, if you'd like to order any of these items through Cayce, email us at themadaristocrat at gmail asap.

Note: There are also trading cards and a pamphlet available as always. If you're interested in ordering either of these through us, just shoot us an email.

13.10.17

The Tower Records Buck-Tick Cafe: 30th Anniversary Edition

We went. We saw. We ate desserts.

Those of you who read our review of the previous Tower Records Buck-Tick Cafe event last year may find this familiar. The cafe is located on the second floor, and this time, like last time, there were band members welcoming us in, and beckoning us into both the stairs and elevator at the same time.



Inside, the layout was similar to last time. The walls were covered with a variety of posters and photo panels, while a large projection screen played a non-stop series of Buck-Tick live DVDs throughout the day. The bar counter overlooking the windows was lined with empty Buck-Tick beer bottles and empty bottles of Toll's Doramu sake, while shelves at the back and sides of the room housed stupendous collections of goods and magazine back-issues.


Life-sized photo panels.


All those Buck-Tick: The Climax goods that no one bought. They're still here!



A shrine of empty Doramu bottles. Those of you who drank that shit - the joke's on you! But we're getting ahead of ourselves here.




Imai imitates Acchan-chan's most recent Rock & Read cover in hopes of beating his wife's* vocalist's all-time record of Most Rock & Read Covers Ever (that's four and counting, more than any other visual kei bishounen OR middle-aged visual kei bishonen wannabe!)

*For those of you who were not aware, Mr. Sakurai and Mr. Imai have been legally married since 1987. This is objectively verifiable fact and it's on file in the Family Registry of Buck-Tickistan. In fact, 2017 is not only Buck-Tick's 30th anniversary year, it also marks the 30th year of the Imai-Sakurai marriage. Despite being the wife, in defiance of Japanese law, Mr. Sakurai reserved the right not to change his surname upon marriage. He may be the wife, but he's a man, after all. Name changing is for women! Also Buck-Tickistan doesn't have stupid sexist laws like that.


Victor posters.


More Victor posters.


There are no non-Victor posters of B-T anywhere in this cafe.

As might be expected, the clientele skewed almost 100% female. Most of the men we spotted on our multiple trips to the cafe were either salarymen who'd wandered in by mistake, or the long-suffering husbands of Buck-Tick fan-mamas, who politely averted their eyes as their wive's eyes practically popped out of their sockets upon the predictable appearance of Mr. Sakurai's thighs during the "Seven Deadly Sins" and "Romance" sections of the Atom Miraiha live DVD. In fact, we found it amusing that no one else in the cafe seemed to notice that, far more than Mr. Sakurai's thighs, it was the fans' reactions that were the real source of entertainment. Mouths gaped, throats gasped, cervixes pupils dilated and we even witnessed one woman drop a whole big white sticky blob of sex whipped cream out of her Sapphire dessert and onto her lap. Someone with an active Buck-Tick copyband: please allow us to join you as a guest vocalist for a cover of Buck-Tick's classic hit, "My Eyes & Your Thighs"! It's our lifelong dream!

Also, honest question... if you have a husband already... haven't you... you know... done... the thing...? How is it still so mysterious as to cause you to drop your dinner in your lap? Did storks bring you babies after all?


Sing it with me: "Iiiiiiitetsuku MAI EYES AAAAAAND YOUR THIIIGHS, tokezu ni ita dakedo subete waaaa!!!" Bonus points for achieving that plaintive, high-pitched Young Acchan crackle.

But now the real question: what about the food?

Overall, the Tower Records Cafe serves an excellent menu, and since their themed items are usually just tweaks on their overall style, it's no surprise that the themed foods this time were just as tasty as last time, if a little ho-hum. Not being in a meat-devouring mood, we declined to sample the Moon Lights or the Baby, I Want You. However, we dug into those desserts, and how! On the first round, we tried both the Serenade and the Angelic Conversation, pictured below.


Angelic Conversation (Did it contain Imai-approved fairy dust? Verdict: No.)


Serenade Umbrella Sweet Baby Sweet (oh shit that was definitely a different song that definitely wasn't all-ages cafe appropriate!! If any of the rest of y'all want to eat a slightly overripe and brown-spotted chocolate banana stuffed inside a rafflesia-themed strawberry crepe slathered in honey and garnished with a sunflower in honor of the continuing brilliance and relevance of "Sweet Baby Sweet" to the cultural history of Buck-Tickistan, please, for the love of fuck, join us! But more on that in another article.) Anyhow, as you can see, the Serenade is umbrella shaped, with a whipped cream handle and fruit ruffles. How, well, sweet!


Get a load of those silver non-pareils! Extra points for the fact that this was, in fact, real whipped cream, and not that fake canned stuff Americans eat. As previously, the label is printed in edible ink on a rice cracker and is 100% safe to stuff into your pie-hole (we did and we're not dead yet. We think.)

Oh yeah, and our little nightcap wouldn't have been complete without a beer and two Cuba Libres - one each for ourselves and our accompanying Buck-Tick fangirlfriend ;) You can't have a Cuba Libre without a Bonita, now can you?


Again, points for the Cuba Libre. It was neither too sweet nor too weak! A true triumph, especially since Cayce hates Coca-Cola and somehow enjoyed this drink. (Coke lovers: fucking fight me!)

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The second installment of the cafe featured some sweet Halloween-themed decor. And now I feel at pains to point out that, contrary to popular belief, no one in Japan except for Genet and the Tokyo Dark Castle crew even knew what Halloween was until about five years ago, and the decoration and celebration thing really only started in 2015... but you wouldn't know it from the thick layer of plastic Jack-O-Lanterns and cutesy witch decals encrusting every available surface in the entire Tokyo metropolitan area since October 1st. Japan, you're reminding us of that rich teenager who all of a sudden decided to be "goth," bought the entire Killstar fall collection with her dad's credit card, and is now swanning around the club bragging about how she saw She Wants Revenge live at this year's Cloak & Dagger Festival in LA and that makes her Cooler Than You, and you haven't the heart to tell her that the Cloak & Dagger Festival hasn't actually happened yet. (Real talk, Blog-Tickers, is anyone going? We are jealous of you and we hate you. Just kidding. Get the bartender to mix some blackcurrant syrup into some beer for you, drink it and think of us.)

Anyway, this is all by way of saying, don't believe it when Japan says that she and Halloween are totes tying the knot. They just started dating two minutes ago. But they are sure putting up a lot of couple selfies on InstaSpace in a vain attempt to compensate for the shallowness of their relationship with public display.





This time, we sampled another two desserts: the Sapphire and the Kuchizuke. While the Sapphire got our hopes up by advertising itself as Warning: Contains Pineapple-Flavored Sex! we were slightly disappointed due to the high whipped cream to sex ratio (Whipped Cream: 1, Sex: 0), and also to the generally weak pineapple flavor in the visually arresting but rather tasteless blue jelly.



Altogether more satisfying was the Kuchizuke, which perfectly balanced fruit, cream, cheesecake cubes and ice cream on top, then delivered a very nearly sexual shock with the appearance of the chocolate mousse down below. Looking at it is not the same thing as tasting it, folks. It was so good we went back and ate another one later. So I guess you could say that second one was... wait for it... just one more kiss!!! (Dig that kissmark on the glass).

But what's in the other glass, you ask? Oh yeah... that would be Toll's Kick Doramu highball - that is to say, Toll's signature Doramu sake on the rocks, with a twist of lemon.

We regret to say this, kids. We really do. Because we love sake, and we love Toll. But not even rocks and a taste of lemon could save this sake. The Onikoroshi stuff you can get in juice boxes for 100 yen at the convenience store tastes better that this stuff (fun fact: the 100-yen convenience store Onikoroshi is actually surprisingly good! One time we won a free one in a convenience store lottery and the girl behind the counter couldn't believe we'd want it and tried to give us a soft drink instead till we got annoyed and told her we wanted our Onikoroshi thank you very much and she gave us the Most Surly Teen Look Ever. Bad jorb manners, girl! But I digress.) Far from tasting like the way to dreams of divine musical pleasure, Doramu tastes like sake mash dissolved in water with a little neutral grain spirit added for alcoholic content. Sake mash, or sake-kasu as it is known in Japanese, is commonly used as a seasoning in foods, especially soups and simmered or grilled fish. It contains a wide array of amino acids, and as a fermented food, it's a particularly healthy choice for supporting your gut bacteria. Plus, it adds an excellent wallop of umami to deepen the flavor of any unsatisfactorily seasoned meal, all with that lovely distinctive sweet-grainy hint of koji mold. In cooking, we can't get enough of this stuff.

But kids, mash is what's leftover after you finish making sake. The sake itself is not supposed to taste like mash! Sake, done right, is supposed to taste like water, but a little bit better than water, mixed with a hint of flower petals and Acchan's tears (whether of pain or pleasure, we'll leave it up to you to find out!) It's not supposed to taste like water infused with soggy koji-flavored cereal. Sorry, Toll. We're glad this one was all sold out before we could get to it, because spending 3500 yen on this is a swindle. Next time, just stick with that Piccante Piccini box wine.

Does this bad review mean that we're turning into an old man who harumphs at pierced teenagers and yells at clouds? Maybe, but we hope not.

And a bonus round... Buck-Tick delights ordered by friends of Not Greatest Site, shameless ripped off Instagram with full permission!


Kick Highball? More like Kick High-LOL!


Love Parade Toast!


Baby, I Want Your Bacon!


And Miss Take pasta! That's cheese on top. Not tofu. In fact, it's a young mozzarella, which means that in all reality and truth it is... GREEN CHEESE! (*Firecrackers and champagne corks and cheers*)

Update: some more food pics, courtesy of Blog-Ticker VT!

Alice in Wonder Cake...

 ...and the Serious Matcha Bear, which grows a beard as you drink it! Guess this bear is one of *those* bears after all (wink wink, nudge nudge).

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In conclusion: it was fun. It was tasty. We're now done eating sugar for the rest of the year. And if you're in Tokyo, run back to Tower - because last time we checked, the purikura machines were still there. We'd share with you the purikura we took, but it's all NSFW.



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Now just ask yourself, how is it even possible to make an NSFW purikura? That's for us to know and you to find out. Till next time. Eat your cheese, live long and prosper.