Wallpaper: Takeshi Kaneshiro in John Woo’s “Red Cliff” (TSUTAYA online)

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One of the best films I’ve seen this year, John Woo’sRed Cliff” gets the kabegami (wallpaper) treatment and the one we’re featuring (three in all) has actor Takeshi Kaneshiro (who plays strategist Zhuge Liang) in it. Go and download the wallpaper (in commemorating the Japan release of the film) from TSUTAYA online here.

And if you haven’t yet seen this masterpiece, the DVD is already out and can be purchased from YESASIA with English subs.

(Via 壁紙fan!)

Update on BEGIN

I received information from CDJapan on an upcoming — yet-to-be-named — single by BEGIN and noticed that quite some time has passed since I last posted an entry on our favorite O-pop band. The new single is set to be released on June 25 and will be the band’s first new release of 2008.

Prior to this upcoming single, BEGIN’s other releases for 2008 include: a concert DVD (“BEGIN Acoustic Concert 2007 Live is Orai” 2/27) and a 2-CD concert album (“BEGIN Live Daizenshuu” 3/26) which is monumental in that it features three songs that were recorded from their appearance in 2004’s Okinawan Festival at Kapiolani Park (Hawaii). That show rocked!

And the final bit of news regarding the trio is guitarist Masaru Shimabukuro’s “shimablog” which he started posting entries on April 11. Hopefully it’ll become more open — as it’s not open to comments nor is there an RSS feed to subscribe to the blog — in the future.

RYUKYUDISKO to release live DVD on the 26th

Techno duo RYUKYUDISKO, having made their major label debut last June with Ki/oon Records, will be releasing a live DVD titled “RKDV 1.0 (LIVE&CLIPS)” on March 26. Their previous live DVD was 2004’s “LEQUIO LIVE -LIVE at WIRE04-” which was released during the duo’s period as indie musicians. On a side note, the duo who go by the stage names RKD1 and RKD2, are twins and have a famous sibling: NAOTO of ORANGE RANGE.

(Via bounce.com.)

Video: Cocco’s ‘Fuuka Fuusou’ DVD release

Cocco’s VHS+CD single “Fuuka Fuusou”, available only in Okinawa (also check out her “Jugon no Mieru Oka” single), will be extending its life with a DVD release on November 21, 2007. While the VHS+CD can still be found in Okinawa (I picked up a copy at Tower Records [or was it Takara Records?] in March of this year) the DVD will bring a much menosore (welcome in Okinawan) addition to your Cocco collection.

[Via Campus Record Staff Blog.]

Gackt gets ready to launch in 20 countries – Tokyograph

In October, Gackt will be making some of his releases available to 20 countries in North America and Europe.

On the 19th, his two DVDs “THE GREATEST FILMOGRAPHY 1999-2006” (“~RED~” and “~BLUE~”) will be released simultaneously in the U.S. and Canada. These North American editions will reportedly include English lyrics he wrote for the songs.

Then on the 26th, his album “DIABOLOS” will go on sale in 18 European countries, followed by his previous live performance DVDs.

Furthermore, his entire solo discography of 201 songs will be made available through iTunes in 22 countries, starting on October 17. Together with his album and DVD, Gackt’s music is being introduced to a total of 36 nations.

Gackt mentioned that he would like to perform an international tour in the future.

(Link: “Gackt gets ready to launch in 20 countries” – Tokyograph.)

This is great news to Gackt fans outside of Japan and to J-pop/rock fans in general. Both of Gackt’s DVDs are available for pre-order at Amazon.com. Be sure to check out my post on artists who are currently available on iTunes too. 😉

DVD: Misako Oshiro’s ‘Uta Kataree’

Misako Oshiro’s ‘Uta Kataree’ DVD Utasaa great Misako Oshiro is making 2007 a year to remember. She started off the year with her first full-album in 10 years, “Uta Umui” (UBCA-1008, Tuff Beats), and held her 50th anniversary (in Okinawa’s performing arts) recital last month (7/8/07) at the Naha Shimin Kaikan. She’ll be performing around Japan from August to October and she has a DVD out titled “Uta Kataree” (INDN-70708, Indie Network). The must-have 12-track DVD will also include an interview with the “Okinawan Shimauta Queen”. If you’re not in Okinawa, I think it’ll be pretty hard to get your hands on this DVD through the regular channels so I’d have to recommend going with Sanshin’s Matsuda. Not to fret tho’, come 10/14/07 Tuff Beats (the record label responsible for “Uta Umui”) will be releasing a DVD (UBBA-2001) of her recital which will be available online at Tower Records Japan as well as, I believe, CDJapan and Amazon.co.jp. I should also add that she has one of the best utasaa-related websites out there: Shima Umui (which is the name of her minyou bar in Naha).

Utasaa (utasha in Japanese): Okinawan folk singer.

[Image and tip on the “Uta Kataree” DVD via Campus Record Staff blog.]

Rimi Natsukawa’s ‘Video Clip Collection’ and ‘Umuikaji’ Hits Stores on March 9th

Victor Entertainment will release a new Rimi Natsukawa DVD on March 9th titled “Video Clip Collection” which will be her third DVD release but her first collection of PVs (promotion videos). Beginning with her first single (under the Victor label) “Yuubae ni Yurete” on to her latest “Furusato”, there are a total of 11 videos to make you fall in love with Rimi all over again. (And of course, “Nada Sou Sou” is in there too.) The DVD (VIBL-377) will be All-Region (as are the other two DVDs) with a price of ¥3,500.

Also hitting store shelves on the same day (March 9th) is her forthcoming album “Umuikaji” (VICL-62259, ¥2,800) with 9 tracks including the latest singles “Sayounara Arigatou ~Ten no Kaze~” and “Furusato”.

[Via JPop News.]