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Our Japanese-language writer gets a visual kei makeover as part of her quest to join the all-female follow-up to X Japan.

Japan’s taste in pop music acts tends to change pretty rapidly, and top-selling artists can find themselves out of the public eye not long after a phenomenally successful release. One exception, though, is X Japan, the pioneering visual kei/rock band that’s had the respect of Japanese music fans and professionals for decades.

Much of that success is thanks to the multi-talented Yoshiki, X Japan’s drummer and pianist who also composes the group’s songs. This month, Yoshiki announced a new project he’s spearheading: the formation of an all-female band called Lady’s X. And as if that news wasn’t exciting enough, the band is holding open auditions. Anyone who wants to join can upload a video of herself singing or playing an instrument, with Yoshiki making the final member selections from among the submissions.

With Yoshiki’s backing, the band is sure to get plenty of media attention, so we asked if any of our writers wanted to be a star, to which our Japanese-language correspondent Momo raised her hand.

The contest has no age limit or experience requirement, and the latter is a good thing for us. Momo isn’t a skilled singer, and the only musical instrument she can play is the recorder. Since Momo’s limited musical abilities weren’t going to help her stand out from her rivals, we decided to focus on her visual appeal, and started by giving her a more rock-appropriate outfit.

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Still, this didn’t give her the look of a rock goddess so much as an Internet writer who decided to ride a motorcycle to work today. So our next stop was the salon of Anzie Sato, a hair and makeup stylist whose chain of salons has helped us out on a handful of projects in the past.

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Having just gotten her hair cut and colored a week ago, Momo was initially hesitant to have her tresses treated, but the lure of potential stardom was enough to get her back in the stylist’s chair. We decided to ask Sato to give Momo a makeover that would have her looking like Toshi, X Japan’s vocalist and childhood friend of Yoshiki, in order to give her video application an extra sentimental factor and hopefully sway Yoshiki’s sentiments in her direction.

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Momo also needed some visual kei-style makeup before we filmed her video, and once again Sato handled the duties.

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Surprisingly, we found out that one part kabuki actor…

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…plus one part Cats dancer…

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…equals rock star!

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With Momo’s visual transformation complete, we decided to rename her MOMO. Now that she had a stage name, we had to find the appropriate backdrop for her music video.

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After a few test shots, we realized there was only one place that would do our creative vision justice, so we hopped on the train for…

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Tokyo Dome!

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The capital’s premier concert venue has been the site of multiple live performances by X Japan, so we figured having it in the background would lend some extra credibility to MOMO’s video.

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Of course, her mean recorder skills are also a key component of her application.

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▼ The fact that there’s an amusement park next to the stadium may have also been a motivating factor.

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Lady’s X applications are being accepted between now and December 31, so there’s still plenty of time to make your own video. But while we won’t know for sure until the beginning of next year, we’re pretty sure MOMO is a shoo-in.

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