KISS in Japanese art

27 Feb

The American rock band KISS are currently on tour in Japan.
(I wrote a post about their Japan tour of 2015 here.)

KISS are doing many unique, only-in-Japan promotions while they are here.
Among them is the 「KISS激辛チリトマトまん」 (“KISS Spicy Chili Tomato Buns”):

Available in Japan now for a limited time!

These are delicious! If you’re in Japan, try them!  They were first available in Japan when KISS toured here in 2013.  Here’s the similar ad that was run then:

They were introduced to Japan in October 2013.

Now, KISS has commissioned Japanese artists to make unique artwork that combines KISS’s Japan-inspired images with traditional Japanese art:

A professional Japanese 書道 (calligraphy) artist wrote the KISS logo and the band members’ personas in Japanese kanji. (They were signed by the band members too).

A professional Japanese 浮世絵 (ukiyoe woodblock print) artist made two prints showing the KISS band members as samurai in one, and samurai battling Japanese monsters in the other.

Here is a YouTube video showing the ukiyoe artist carving the woodblock to make the KISS ukiyoe prints:

Japan’s amazing bike parking system

24 Feb Featured Image -- 11704

tokyo5:

Tokyo has one of these too.

Originally posted on RocketNews24:

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Compared to Tokyo, Japan’s former capital, Kyoto, is fairly compact. Most of the commercial development is clustered around Kyoto Station, with a ring of temples, gardens, and other historical sites surrounding the more modern parts of the city.

Kyoto is also relatively flat, and the grid pattern its major streets are laid out on makes it an easy town to get around by bicycle. Of course, Kyoto doesn’t want an unsightly mass of parked bikes marring the scenery and cluttering pedestrian walkways, which is why at one of the city’s major transportation hubs there’s a subterranean, automated bicycle parking lot, and if that sounds awesomely high-tech, wait until you see it in action.

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KISS Japan Tour 2015 goods

21 Feb

KISS is on their way to Japan now to begin their 2015 Japan tour on Monday.
(Click here to see my post about the announcement of this tour, the tour dates, and their special guests for the Tokyo Dome show).

The T-shirts and other merchandise that KISS will be selling for their shows in Japan have been revealed.

I like towels from concerts. These types of towels are unique to Japan, aren’t they?

Click here to see the page with the complete list of official KISS Japan Tour 2015 merchandise (Japanese only).

New Years Postcard Lottery 2015

19 Feb

I had almost forgotten about the annual 年賀状お年玉 (New Years Postcard Lottery).
(Click here to read an earlier post I’ve written about it).

What reminded me of it was the fact that today is 「旧正月」 (Chinese New Years).

On January 19th, 2015, the winning numbers were announced.

Check your postcards, if you have a winning number, you have until July 21st (2015) to bring winning cards to a post office (in Japan) to claim your prize.

The winning numbers and prizes for this year are:

Place Prize Odds Number of winners Winning Numbers
1st(last five digits) ¥10,000 1 in 100,000 33,185 82243
2nd(last four digits) Various local goods 1 in 10,000 331,858 1351
3rd(last two digits) Commemorative postage stamps 2 in 100 (1 in 50) 66,371,640 27 or 30

Click here to visit the Japan Post “New Years Postcard Lottery” page (in Japanese).

Only in Japan: the official KISS face pack

17 Feb Featured Image -- 11689

Originally posted on RocketNews24:

KISS FACEPACK2KISS, the never-ending merchandising machine, is still relatively popular in Japan and periodically releases Japan-exclusive products. In the past we’ve seen black KISS spicy steamed buns and just recently we were treated to a KISS collaboration music video with popular Japanese idol group Momoiro Clover Z. But if you aren’t satisfied merely eating or watching the band, you now have a chance to transform into one of its members in mere seconds using the newly released KISS Face Pack.

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Narita

16 Feb

The city of Narita in Chiba Prefecture, Japan is usually associated with the international airport that is there.

People not so familiar with Japan may think that Japan’s “Narita International Airport is in Tokyo…but Narita is a part of Chiba, which is near Tokyo.

(There is an international airport in Tokyo…it’s “Haneda International Airport“.)

The airport isn’t the only reason to go to Narita City though.
成田山新勝寺 (Narita-san-Shinsho-ji) is a beautiful famous temple that has many wonderful festivals and events.
The area near the temple has many traditional Japanese shops and restaurants.

Narita is known for ウナギ (freshwater eel). There are a number of restaurants there that serve it…it’s delicious! If you visit Narita, you should try it!

Anyways, it had been awhile since we’ve visited Narita…so we went there yesterday. Here are some photos I took:

Japanese children’s cartoon character “Baikin-man”.

It says that Narita is “a traditional Japanese hospitality town”.

These are “Daruma”…a traditional Japanese ornament most commonly seen at New Year’s time.

 

A 「たこやき」 (Grilled octopus dumplings) stand.

 

The entrance to 「成田山新勝寺」 (“Narita-san-Shinsho-ji”) temple.

 

A lion guard at the entrance to 「成田山新勝寺」 (“Narita-san-Shinsho-ji”) .

 

A 「招き猫」 (Maneki-Neko lucky cat).

 

The 7-Eleven store there has a brown sign to keep with the style of the area.

New Hachiko statue in Tokyo…with his master!

12 Feb Featured Image -- 11665

tokyo5:

Japan loves Hachiko! There are already two other statues of this beloved dog in Japan (only one statue is well-known).
My post about the dog and the statue in Shibuya:

https://tokyo5.wordpress.com/2009/04/09/on-this-day/

(I want to see this new statue at Univ of Tokyo!)

Originally posted on RocketNews24:

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Even in a country that adores its pets, none have captured the hearts of Japanese animal-lovers like Hachiko. The Akita dog touched the hearts of people across the nation by devotedly waiting every day for more than nine years in front of Tokyo’s Shibuya Station for his master to return from work, not knowing that he had died from a cerebral hemorrhage and wouldn’t be coming back.

Today, a statue of Hachiko stands in Shibuya, showing the dog patiently waiting. But while the bittersweet quality of the story made Hachiko famous, it overlooks the fact that before his master’s passing, the two would happily reunite every evening and walk home together. Now, it’s that moment’s turn to be immortalized, with a new statue showing Hachiko as he’s rarely been depicted before, bursting with joy upon seeing his owner.

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