Thursday night, residents and diners in Little Tokyo stopped, stared and inquired when they saw the line outside of Anime Jungle/Cure Shop. The crowd of young, often elaborately dressed people were waiting outside of the popular anime and music outlet for a chance to score an autograph and photo opportunity with Japanese bands GPKism and Seileen.
"I don't know who those bands are," said more than one person who asked us about the event.
The two groups are currently touring the US and will play at Echo Park's Bootleg Theater tonight. For fans of Japanese-styled gothic music, this will be a major event.
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GPKism is GPK (Gothique Prince Ken) and Kiwamu, formerly of the band Blood. Kiwamu's previous band was incredibly popular amongst American fans of the Japanese rock style known as visual kei, so, in some respects, GPKism has a bit of a built-in fan base. However, the two bands differ drastically. Where Blood could be easily classified as metal in the States, GPKism is poppier and much heavier on the synths. Check out this video, filmed at the Jesus-themed Shinjuku restaurant Christon Cafe.
Seileen is a duo comprised of vocalist Selia and DJ Sisen. The latter is a familiar face for US fans, as he has played here several times before and is associated with popular fashion designer/DJ Takuya Angel. When we first heard Seileen, we immediately thought of neo-classical, industrial outfits Die Form and Qntal, both of whom are named as influences on the band's MySpace page. Check out the song "Eden without Eve."