Visual Kei in the Rain: MUCC’s “Rain Orchestra”

Considering how much I liked my Visual Winter Wonders Series, I decided to try it out with other themes. Of course aptly titled, “Visual Kei in the Rain”, which based off music videos may or may not be accurate. We’ll find out together. I took inspiration from the phrase, “April Showers Bring May Flowers”, something I parrot to my students a lot during this month. It makes absolutely no sense in Japan since their rainy season is in June/July, not April…. But it makes sense in the states so we’re rolling with it.

This time, I decided to lean into kanji instead of English for the song selection. Specifically, I decided to pick “雨” (ame), or Rain. It’s a kanji that I never quite get the spacing correct for when I write it myself, but I like the balance in the character and how it actually looks like rain.

Today, we’re taking a bit of a stroll back to 2005, which was an excellant year for Visual Kei and for MUCC. Considering the band has been active since 1997, it’s no small feat that they’re my first pick for this series.

“Rain Orchestra” is a melancholy song, recounting seemingly a novelist’s encounter with a women he’s seeing. Given the title, we can assume that it’s not going to be the most uplifting recounting of events. Unlike many bands of the time that would quite literally go straight for the throat in displeasure, MUCC is much more poetic about it. I mean lines like;

” 紫陽花みたいだね They look like Hydrangeas

鮮やかに咲く街並みの傘 The umbrellas of the street houses which bloom vividly.

真赤なビニール傘 君の横顔赤く染めた Your brightly red vinyl umbrella that dyed your profile red”


“雨は止み机にペンをおいた。As I put down the pen, the rain has stopped.

空はいつしか流れ始めた Unnoticed, the sky has started flowing

僕が君についていた嘘きっと君は知ってたよね You certainly knew about
the lies I told you, right?

初めから。From the beginning.”

The lyrics are quite striking, and deserve some recognition for telling a story within them. It’s a lot of poetic reflection on a relationship’s circumstances, especially in a manner like this, that’s suited for it to be raining.

I also appreciate that while MUCC obviously did not bring in an entire orchestra for the entire song (but how cool would that have been?). The composition from the beginning, makes sure to account for having orchestral elements. Especially when it comes to the string section, which compliments Miya’s guitar-work and Yukke’s bass-line. The attention to detail in mixing as well, really shows 3:20 mark when they strip back the orchestra and really let the core band shine.

It’s certainly not an uplifting song, but perhaps one where you’re not alone in the feeling? With that, I’ll bid you farewell until we meet again in the rain!

I referenced this website for English translation, and this website for Japanese. I believe JpopAsia compiled them together here. I take no credit for translations.



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