Versailles: Rock Out With Your Frock Out

Impeccable live sound, eye-poppingly elaborate costumes and hot ladies – what more could you ask of a Japanese visual rock band? Alright, so the ladies aren’t exactly ladies, but blast it, can they shred! These days, most old school visual bands have, for better or worse, abandoned their frills and velvet for a more modern and somewhat more masculine look. I didn’t think I’d ever get to personally witness the kind of gloriously indulgent showmanship as I did last night.

Versailles in full regalia. Click image for a large version.

As it turns out, while Japan’s visual rock scene’s been winding down for a long time now, some goodness is yet to be reaped. Yesterday this was proven once and for all at a sold out show here in Hollywood. My jaw hit the floor when Versailles, a supergroup formed last year from ex-members of Lareine, Sufuric Acid and Sugar Trip, entered the stage. I was a wee kid in a candy-shop as this straight out of an acid-tinged Anne Rice cosplay vision appeared before the shrieking audience. The hair? Huge. The outfits? Hand-beaded and perfectly gaudy. The singer? Oh yes, he wore a cape. And pantaloons. And heels. Where the hell was Poppycock?

They had this “visual” thing, undisputedly, down. It did not end there, however. Unlike another supergroup I saw live last year, Versailles worked it. There was no phoning it in for these poised professionals; not a missed note, cracked heel or torn hem – the show was excellent from beginning to end, powder breaks and all. Between Hizaki and Teru’s metal guitars, Kamijo‘s crooning and intense cape maneuvering I was reminded of Barry Manilow, Las Vegas and Lestat in all the right ways. Watch the ten-minute opus below and be transported to a darquer side of French royalty (had French royalty been Japanese and used flatirons) as you bask in the grandeur of Versailles.

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10 Responses to “Versailles: Rock Out With Your Frock Out”

  1. the daniel Says:

    Yeah, when I first heard of this show I figured they were the typical group of new-school visual rock posers, but a quick trip to their myspace for a listen ROCKED MY FACE OFF and I knew I had to go. It all made sense when I saw Hizaki & Kamijo were involved. \m/

  2. Zoetica Says:

    My face was also rocked!

  3. Mer Says:


  4. R. Says:

    My love for Japanese rock just increased tenfold.

  5. Zoetica Says:

    Mer, you know, “Yum.” was going to be the entirety of my post but then I decided elaborating might be a good idea.

    R., that’s the intended effect!

  6. monshogaku Says:

    Reminds me of X-Japan, in a good way.

  7. private_grave Says:

    I’ve picked up every issue of Cure featuring them. To bad my hiragana and, well, Japanese in general, is awful.

  8. Tequila Says:

    Ah hell I knew I should have gone. I figured it wouldn’t be anywhere near as cool as I’d want it to be and just feel cheated. Seems I missed something golden…

    Good to hear it was face rocking good though.

  9. Zoetica Says:

    Monoshgaku, a source of inspiration for Versaiiles, I’m sure.

    Private Grave, I bet your Japanese is better than mine, anyway!

    Tequila, you would have loved it! Next time.

  10. Andrea Says:

    I wish I could have gone *3*~
    I saw just Kamijo live a couple years ago and eventhough I wasn’t into vkei at that time, and eventhough it was just him on that stage, it was amazing!
    I can’t even imagine how awesome that live performance was~