Posted by Gise | File under : , ,
The Japanese Visual scene can be a confusing place. It differs immensely from it's overseas counterpart in terms of customs during and around lives and you might find yourself suffering quite the culture shock at your first Japanese Visual live if you don't prepare. On top of that, the Japanese bangya have created their own slang language which is hard to understand even if you speak sufficient Japanese.

There are a lot of resources in Japanese explaining these terms, but I haven't been able to find a lot of information in English. That's why I've compiled a list of bangya speak I've come across before. I am aware that some of these terms are already catching on overseas, or that they might be common sense, but since I didn't know where to draw the line I included everything.

Any suggestions or comments? Or did I forget an important term? Let me know in the comments!

Words are ordered alphabetically by their romaji reading (e.g. event is listed as ibento). I will constantly be updating this page with new entries as I encounter (or remember) them, so you might want to check back every once in a while!

Agaru 『あがる』
Lit. To ascend.
To stop being a fan.

Amaban 『アマ盤』
Lit. Amateur band. Other term for indies band.

Angura kei 『アングラ系』
A sub genre of Visual kei. More on genres will follow later.

Anpintai 『アンピン隊』
Someone who causes mayhem with safety pins and stabs people with them during lives (seriously don't do this..).

Aori 『煽り』
Words uttered by the band to stir up the crowd during the live. The most common example being "kakatte koi! (Come and get it!)".

Bangya 『バンギャ』
A girl who loves Visual kei (bands). Similar to fangirl.
Also written: Bangyaru 『バンギャル』.

Chikasen 『地下線』
Lit. Underground line. Other name for the label UNDER CODE PRODUCTION (UCP). It's usually referred to as chikasen, not as ucp.

Dai honmei ban 『大本命盤』
Your favorite, still active band.

Dekin 『出禁』
I. When a band is banned from a venue for causing trouble during the lives. For example for breaking things or continuously climbing on top of the amps.
II. When a fan is banned from seeing a certain band for causing trouble during the lives, usually as a last measure.

Demachi 『出待ち』
Waiting for a band to leave the venue after a live. In Japan fans often give the band presents or letters, talk to the band or take photos with the members during this time. Some bands ban demachi.
See also: irimachi.

Desuvo 『デスヴォ』
Death voice. The grunting-"ish" thing fans do at heavier lives when they call out to the band.

Domainaa ban 『ドマイナー盤』
Super minor band. A band that is so unknown that only those who know the Visual Kei scene really well acknowledge this band.

Dorinku dai 『ドリンク代』
Drink fee. Japanese venues often require you to buy a drink ticket (often around 500 yen) upon entrance, which you can exchange for a drink inside the venue.

Dosen 『ドセン』
The spot in front row in dead center.

Ensei 『遠征』
When someone travels far to see a band perform, with the implication of going to multiple lives during that tour.

Furi, Furitsuke 『フリ、振り、振付』
Choreo. The choreography and dance moves fans participate in during lives, such as headbanging, fist pumping, gyakudai, etc. Not to be confused with parapara! It's not the same!
Read more about furitsuke

Gyao 『ギャ男』 
A boy who loves Visual kei (bands). Similar to fanboy.
Also written: Bangyao 『バンギャ男』, bangyaruo 『バンギャル男』.

Hashi 『橋』
Harajuku bridge. That famous bridge near Harajuku station where people gather to cosplay (band members).

Honmei ban 『本命盤』
A band you really love which is still active.

Honmei men 『本命麺』
Someone's favorite band member.

Ibento 『イベント』
I. an event live 『イベントライブ』, a live organised by a band, magazine, label or other sponsor, at which multiple bands perform.
II. an instore event.

Ike, Ikemen 『池、池麺』
A very good looking guy.

Indies 『インディーズ』
A band that isn't signed with a recording label. The opposite of Major.

Insuto 『インスト』
Instore. An event for the promotion of the artist. At these events artists usually hold a handshake session, a talk session, or a signing session, among other things. Instore events usually take place at specialty Visual kei stores like zeal link, and require a CD purchase for participation.

Irimachi 『入り待ち』
Waiting for the bands to enter the venue. This is mostly done outside Japan, as Japanese ticket numbers take away the need to sit in line. In Japan this is considered rude because bands are usually very busy before lives.
See also: demachi.

Jouren 『常連』
Regular fan. A fan who goes to (nearly) all lives of a particular band

Kamiban 『神盤』
Lit. god band. A band you love so much you respect them as "Gods" (using the term loosely here), but which no longer exists. e.g. Malice Mizer has kamiban status for a lot of people.

Kamite 『上手』
Stage left. Right side of the stage from the fan's perspective.
See also: shimote.

Kaofan 『顔ファン』
Lit. face fan. Someone who's only a fan because of the band or band member's looks.

Kote kei 『コテ系』
A sub genre of Visual kei. More on genres will follow later.

Koteosa kei 『コテオサ系』
A sub genre of Visual kei. More on genres will follow later.

MC 『エムシー』
The little chats/talks from band members during lives in between songs. Not all bands do this.

Men 『麺』
A band member.
Also written: Bandomen 『バンド麺』.

Mitsukano 『蜜カノ』
Lit. honey girlfriend. A fan who sends a band member money.
See also: satsure

Moumoku 『盲目』
Lit. Blindness. When someone who only cares about their favorite band, or even their favorite band member and doesn't care for any other bands.

Obangya 『オバンギャ』
A combination of oban (old hag) and bangya. An older fan. There's always been a lot of discussion in the Japanese scene about what age makes you an obangya. The term has a negative connotation.

Okkake 『追っかけ』
Stalker fan. A fan who would for example search for the band's hotel or greet them at the train station.

Okini 『オキニ』
Outdated term. Someone who is a band member's favorite fan.

Onnagata 『女形』
A band member who dresses in female clothes and who has very feminine looks. This term comes from Kabuki, in which female roles were played by men dressed up as females. Some prominent onnagata were Mana in Malice Mizer, IZAM in SHAZNA and Toshiya and Shinya in the early years of Dir en grey. But to be honest I haven't seen anyone use this term recently.

Ongen 『音源』
For example a CD, an mp3 or a Demo tape. Basically any merch that makes sound.

Osare kei 『オサレ系』
A sub genre of Visual kei. More on genres will follow later.

Panpi 『パンピ』
A normal person. Someone who doesn't know Visual Kei. The opposite of bangya.

Saizen 『最前』
The front row. This spot is usually reserved for regular fans. Don't just push your way into the front row as it's extremely rude to do so. Ask first!

Saizen koushou 『最前交渉』
Front row negotiations. When in between bands at taiban events the people in the front row change.
See also: shikiri.

Sansen 『参戦』
Lit. Go to war. To attend a live.

Satsure 『札レ』
A fan letter that contains money, as well as the sender's contact information.
See also: mitsukano.

Seiban / seiribango 『整番/整理番号』
Ticket number. In Japan tickets for lives are numbered and you enter the venue based on ticket numbers, making it useless to line up early.

Shimote 『下手』
Stage right. Left side of the stage from the fan's perspective.
See also: kamite

Shinki 『新規』

Sofubi 『ソフビ』
Soft Visual kei. A sub genre of Visual kei. More on genres will follow later.

(Sou)shikiri 『(総)仕切り』
Someone at taiban lives, often a jouren fan, who determines who gets to stand where on the first row during the live. To give everyone a fair shot at being able to stand front row at their own favorite band, the people in the front row change in between performances. The (sou)shikiri manages this process by assigning spots beforehand, to make the shifts go smoothly and to prevent fights from breaking out. There usually isn't a shikiri at oneman lives for obvious reasons. A person managing the front row for just one band is called a shikiri, when someone manages the entire event they're called soushikiri. Some bands ban (sou)shikiri (e.g. Versailles), as it can happen that the shikiri abuses their position to let their friends on the front row.
It's very rude to push your way into the front row without asking the (sou)shikiri first.
See also: saizen koushou

Taiban 『対バン』
An event where several bands perform. Opposite of oneman.

Tanuki 『たぬき』
A Visual kei bulletin board on 2chan.

Tsunagari 『繋がり』
Someone who is connected to the band and has personal contact with a band member. This can be as a friend, as a lover or as an acquaintance.

Opposite of taiban. A solo live. Alternatively there are also twoman lives with two bands performing, threeman lives with three bands performing, etc. You get the gist.
See also: taiban.

Zentsuu 『全通』
Going to all the lives of a band's tour. (e.g. all Japan lives, or all European lives).


  1. I tought Bangya was a pejorative term =o Like a fangirl who is too much... fangirl xD Like a "groupie" in France ._.

    1. Hmm well bangya literally just means "band gal" or "band girl". I get the idea that at least within visual kei it's a fairly neutral term. I see a lot of girls refer to each other or themselves as bangya without getting offended by it and even some bands refer to visual kei fans as bangya (Mejibray does for example). I don't know if the term was originally derogatory (probably was), and I'm pretty sure that for people outside of visual kei it's a negative term.

      It's definitely different from a groupie though, I think "tsunagari" would be closest to groupie in meaning and it does have the same negative connoctation, but I don't know if the word "tsunagari" is used outside visual kei, and the term groupie exists in Japanese as well.

  2. Okay thank you very much for your answer ^^