Not wanting to be upstaged by The Mortal, Schaft has released a whole slew of new announcements!
First, for those of you who didn't catch Schaft during their first tour back in the early 90's due to still being nothing but a latent possibility and vague tingle of lust in the gonads of your parents, now is your chance to make up for lost time! Schaft will be releasing a limited-edition box set of their old work. The box will contain FOUR whole discs, including one DVD with live footage from the first Schaft tour. While this footage was, I believe, available on VHS back in the day (omg guys remember VHS tapes???), this is the first time it has ever been released to DVD, so this is big news not only for fans of Imai and Fujii Maki, but also for fans of Raymond Watts, since he was heavily involved in the band's original lineup.
The box set will be released on January 20th, and cost 7000 yen including tax. Details of the contents are as follows:
A remastered version of Schaft's first album, Switchblade, first released in 1994
A remix disc including the following:
- All the tracks from Schaft's first remix album, Switchmix, first released in 1994
- The original version of Schaft's first-ever song, "nicht-title," originally released on the omnibus album Dance2Noise001 in 1991
- An all-new remix of "nicht-title" by Fujii Maki
- "SuperSchaftTrack," the remix offered by Schaft in 1999 for the zilch remix album
- A remaster of Raymond Watt's remix of "THE HERO INside"
A live CD recorded at Schaft's live show held at the Shibuya Kokaido on September 26th, 1994 (released to CD for the first time ever!)
A DVD version of Schaft's live video Switchblade -Visual Mix- (released to DVD for the first time ever!) The DVD also includes a bonus track of the PV for "Arbor Vitae"...and all I have to say is, fangirls, this collector's box is worth buying for the "Arbor Vitae" PV alone, because this is surely the only chance you will ever have to own a bona-fide DVD copy of Imai's one and only video appearance acting the role of a snuff-porn videographer. And if you don't find the very idea of that strangely titillating I suggest you leave the Buck-Tick fandom now.
As you can imagine, the box set will also come with an extra-super-duper-fancy booklet, though there is as yet no word on whether the booklet will include outtakes from the highly homo-erotic photoshoot of Imai and Fujii twined around each other wearing skin-tight ribbed tank tops that appeared back in the 1991 issue of Rockin' On Japan (the same issue also featured the now-famous photo series of Mr. Sakurai as pearl-clutching Yoshiki's personal European Nazi executioner/torturer as well as Issay dressed in a bedsheet doing a strip tease and a capsule behind-the-scenes anecdote in the back about Yoshiki locking himself in the dressing room to prepare, while Mr. Sakurai ranted to the photographers that he had been mistakenly labeled as the man in a tabloid scandal photo of a man and lady coming out of a love hotel, declaring "that guy isn't me, he looks nothing like me!" - as you can see folks, the 90's were exciting times so track down this magazine if you dare!)
Second, the release of Schaft's new album has also been announced! The album will be titled Ultra and in addition to Messrs. Imai and Fujii, it will also feature Yow-Row from GARI (best known to Buck-Tick fans as the dude who did the mixing for "Melancholia -Electria-"), Mr. Ueda from AA= (who performed at Buck-Tick's 25th anniversary festival), and Yukihiro from L'arc-En-Ciel and acid android (who I think we can all agree is much better when he's not encumbered by Hyde's icky twinkiness...sorry, Hyde fans.)
The album will be released on January 20th, same day as the box set. As usual, it will be released in two versions. The limited edition will include a bonus DVD and cost 3780 including tax. The regular edition will just contain the album and will cost 3240 including tax.
Also, regarding this album, Schaft would like you to know that they most certainly very definitely DID NOT steal the title from Depeche Mode. Who would ever do a thing like that. After all, it's not like Mona Lisa Overdrive was the title of novel by William Gibson or anything.
Third, in addition to the three tour dates already scheduled, Schaft have announced that they will be playing an additional two shows, as follows:
Sunday, January 24th - Yokohama Bay Hall (open 5PM/start 6PM)
Monday, January 25th - Liquidroom Ebisu (open 6PM/start 7PM)
For those of you who were twisting yourself into knots trying to skip work because all the fucking Mortal gigs AND all the fucking Schaft gigs are on fucking weekdays, now is your chance to see Schaft on a Sunday...but act fast! The pre-sale ticket lottery through Schaft's official website will be taking place between November 6th and November 16th, and this will be your best chance to get tickets, especially for the Liquidroom show, as it's a tiny venue and likely to sell out immediately.
Aaaand...that's all for now. But there will surely be more to follow soon. If you would like Cayce's help or advice with ordering the tour tickets, the box set, or anything else, email us at themadaristocrat at gmail.
And yeah, I get it, folks. You don't care much about this, because you only care about Acchan-chan so as far as you're concerned Imai on his own is nothing but a weird guy who kind of looks like a potato who woke up in a dumpster after spending a whole night listening to a lot of bleepy-bloopy music that only really makes sense if you're high on acid. But if that's your not-so-secret opinion, shame on you. You should care about this. Because in addition to being a dumpster-clad acid potato, Imai is a once-in-a-generation genius and this is probably Schaft's swan song so it's well and truly history, and since someday, if you're lucky enough not to die young, you, too, may wake up in a dumpster to find yourself old and wrinkly and friendless, so the time to live is now, my friends. You should care.
Let's see some love for Imai in the comments section.