My first overnight stay at Tokyo Dark Castle for over a year was damned exciting. The crowd set was a bit different from what I remember with only a few familiar faces, but they were pumped up and ready to scream. Golden Week is usually a pretty light time in terms of people turnout (because everybody runs away to their hometowns), but this event was pumping with a comfortably crowded Marz club and more cool fashion than you can point a sparkler at. Gothic, lolita, cyber, leather, fetish, dreg (uh me), and more.

Auto-Mod :: info
The bands were fiery hot. Auto-Mod were in fine form with a fantastic set featuring ye olde metal grinder (a real one flashing out sparks and shit), fireplay, and a meatier sound that showed these legends of the local scene can continue to deliver to today’s audience. The band has come a long way in the past 14 months, when I last saw the start of the change with the new line-up/arrangement.

Lloy :: info
Lloy smashed my pre-conceptions of thinking of them as a moody alt-rock band. These guys are hard rock with strong femme vocals making them a very hot item on stage. A number of people inside the scene told me they were damned good – I just didn’t know how good.

Baal :: info
I was primed by this time, but I was not prepared for the next act, my dear friends Baal. They just ripped shit up on stage and had the audience screaming and jumping. I have loved Baal’s live performances since I first saw the band as Chronotrigger in 2005 (A fresh, harsh industrial group who’ll blow you away), but Baal has kept on ratcheting up the intensity, power and its appeal to the point where it truly is one sexy beast! While they are my friends, I am being completely honest in my comments – they are that damned good!

Destruct System :: info
Finally I scoped Destruct System who I have seen quite often at a number of events. These guys are harsh hard rock that is just plain hot. Where Baal left off, DS took over turning the lower level into a grinding pit of Gothic flesh. They know how to connect and their sets are varied to suit the tastes of the night (metal, Gothic, electronic, etc.) so you will get something a bit different every time you see them. These guys are damned good and can ignite any crowd with their intensity.

So that wraps that up. Tokyo Dark Castle is bigger and flasher than ever. All the bands are stepping up the intensity to deliver an array of hard-hitting sounds that will soon be able to shed the “J” moniker and be considered as part of the global Goth scene. And the crowd is growing all the time.

As for me personally, turning up after a long hiatus as a cybernetic entity, it was kind of strange. There were some familiar faces, but I am a stranger again. It was good to catch up with a few good friends and see just how far the scene has progressed in the past 12 months.

There is also some great stuff afoot with a some fuck yeah! news, a couple of viddies but more on that stuff later…

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