Yesterday, I was privy to some surprising, and slightly disturbing, news. For those of you who are unaware, ‘visual kei’ is a specific type of Japanese rock music that is characterized by the fashion the band members wear. Musically, they often sound something like a mix of glam rock, punk, and metal (thanks Wikipedia!), but more than the music itself, visual kei is defined by the flamboyant clothing, makeup, and stage personas of the members. I myself have my roots in visual kei–I appreciate the style and a number of bands that define themselves as visual kei, but I wouldn’t go so far as to say I’m a huge, die-hard fan of the movement. My tastes run more along the lines of a certain band called Buck-Tick (a band that is actually credited as being one of the founders of the visual kei movement, but I digress).
Suffice it to say, when I heard that Disney was going to release an album called “V-ROCK Disney” in Japan, I was shocked. Disney songs sung by… visual kei bands? Alright, Japan, you’ve come up with a lot of wacky Disney crossovers that were almost universally panned when they were first announced (Kingdom Hearts, I’m looking at you), but this might be taking it a step too far. Here’s a couple of images to help illustrate Disney x visual kei for you all: