VK interactions outside their Scene

I am not sure about the title, if someone has a better suggestion, i will change it.

What i would love to talk about is, do you all see VK bands as open? Are they fine playing outside their scene, with non-VK bands for example?
Do they try to keep their music as mysterious as possible, so they take care that you never get to see what chords they play on their guitar (so you cant copy them)?

Also there is often the saying that VK bands don’t care about oversea fans, then why do they sign up with oversea labels? Doesnt that mean they do care? Maybe on a lower level, but at least to some point they probably do.

I hope you guys get what i mean.

I know there are VK bands that are fine and seem comfortable performing outside their “VK bubble” but i am curios if you all think it became more, or less.


I can’t imagine many bands try to keep their music as mysterious as possible (I’m sure some do) but a lot of PV’s feature shots of the guitar, as well as that if a listener is dedicated enough they’ll learn the songs by ear (guitar tablature books are a dying breed)

In regards to the oversea fans, I think most VK groups don’t think they have a huge appeal outside of Japan and that it’s better to make their core focus getting big in Japan . Obviously some groups do tour Europe with some success and in relation to why they sign up with oversea labels, it’s better to have some publicity than no publicity.

There’s a lot of questions in your original post, so it’s hard to address them all, especially involving the whole “scene.” As far as bands playing outside of the VKei label, I know there are a few, especially in the heavier side of Vkei who play openly with no visual bands. JILUKA, DEVILOOF, and CHOKE are a few that I can name. JILUKA in particular has started a yearly event live called the MAD PIT TOUR that involves visual and non-visual bands (Victim of Deception and MAKE MY DAY).
As for hiding their music, there are also a bunch that post play-along videos, whether it be drums (Kanta of DEVILOOF) or bass (Boogie of JILUKA), or guitar (Sena of JILUKA or Seiya of THE DESPERADO/ex-DEVILOOF).
And as for bands that don’t care about playing overseas, I think it’s probably a majority. There isn’t a ton of money to be made in touring abroad and it often comes as a large overhead cost for the band themselves. With the growth of online streaming and shops being able to ship internationally, there are a few bands that are happy to have their music bought/played internationally, but they probably don’t/can’t tour outside of Japan due to the cost, so their interest in touring globally is not high.
All of this really depends on the band, though, and also on their label. Most of the bands I listed are self-produced so they can do as they please, which also seems to be the trend now as visual labels are nearly dead by now. But it’s not uncommon for visual bands to sign with larger labels and at that point, most of what you questioned is probably out of their control.

Not sure if this counts, but Kaoru of DIR EN GREY listens to downy (one of my all-time favorite Japanese bands) and even featured on the solo album of downy’s late guitarist, Yutaka Aoki. Yutaka also did a remix of a DIR EN GREY track at some point.

Some pics of Yutaka and Kaoru from an interview they did together: