HEAVY POP is a semi-regular music + fashion club event held regularly over the last five years across assorted venues in Tokyo.
Founded by photographer Ray Ochiai, it is the center of a tightly-knit scene of people who like to party to EDM, idol music, anime song remixes, and the occasional J-pop oldie ("oldie " meaning songs from the 1990s now...). It's a good mix of styles which can be a little goth, or at times more cyber, or fetish, or punk, or even more otaku depending on the participants (cosplay and maids are common sights).
A cynic (not me, for once) could say that these individual subcultural scenes might not have enough momentum to have their own events -- so everyone has to band together to survive, but this intimate gathering of wacky weirdoes seems to have evolved on its own organically. Everyone gathers for a group photo towards the end of the session, which reinforces a tight-knit family vibe.
I'm guessing that Ray must be sitting on a motherlode of subcultural "Party Snaps" from all the events he's helped to put on so far.
My pics were taken in June 2014 at the last Heavy Pop held at HELL'S BAR in Sangenjaya before the gang made off for nicer digs in Aoyama. The highlight of this evening (for me anyway) was watching what looked like a white guy English teacher Englishteacher white guy who wandered in off the street mercilessly trying to pick upgirls who did not seem to compute human behavior at all.
DJ Merupan in her cyber regalia
Merupan plays her anison set. Bonus points for elementary school kid backpack.
Singer Alice (aka ATG) and backup dancer Lotta from The Lady Spade
Indie artist and subcult idol Kamononatsumi
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MONDO TOKYO: Snapshots from Inside Japanese SubcultureNon-Fiction
Japanese pop culture expert Patrick Macias takes you on a illustrated tour of astonishing people, places, and things found inside Tokyo's underground art, music, fashion, and otaku scenes.