We’ve all seen portraits of Louis XIV looking like an overfed peacock in lace collars and fur robes and four-inch heels. Three hundred years later, a band has emerged that matches the Sun King’s decadent dress and even takes its name from his court: Versailles.

Versailles band Japan Visual Kei

Versailles was formed in March 2007 with various well-known members from Japan’s Visual Kei scene. The supergroup always performs in aristocratic French gowns, as seen above. And yes, as is the norm for Visual bands, all of the skirt-wearing members are actually men.

Versailles signed with Germany’s CLJ Records, and released its first album Lyrical Symphony last Halloween. The group has been receiving international media attention, especially after uploading an album trailer on YouTube. On Xmas, Versailles is performing at a Gothic & Lolita Bible loft party in Shinjuku (how many fingers would you cut off to be there? )

The video for the band’s first single, “The Revenant Choir,” is now available on YouTube. Versailles describes its concept as “the absolute Youshikibi (beauty of form) sound and extremes of aestheticism.” Hmm… it sounds like hard rock/speed metal to me! But unlike many Visual Kei artists, I think their music measures up to their theatrical outfits.

Versailles band Japan Visual Kei Hizaki

The prettiest of them all is guitarist Hizaki, who usually performs in a tiered red and gold Aristocrat Lolita gown and flower headdress. Imagine one of Marie Antoinette’s handmaidens shredding an electric guitar. Ridiculously awesome, right? That’s Visual Kei in a nutshell.

She – sorry, HE – has a solo “Hizaki Grace Project” and is releasing a short album (Curse of Virgo) on December 26th. Hizaki writes: “This album is instrumental so no singer this time, but my guitar is singing with beautiful melody!!” If you’re curious as to what that means, check out his guitar solo below. Doesn’t his wail remind you a bit of Brian May of Queen?



  1. Gene
    Posted November 21, 2008 at 8:16 pm | Permalink

    So beautiful

  2. Gene
    Posted November 22, 2008 at 4:16 am | Permalink

    So beautiful

  3. Gene
    Posted November 22, 2008 at 4:16 am | Permalink

    So beautiful