Club Max took place on July 1, 2010 at Club Nokia in downtown Los Angeles at the heart of LA Live. I first heard about this event from a few friends during Fanime. Club Max celebrates Japan's empire of cool. While most of the attendees came from across the street from Anime Expo. Club Max had much to offer to people interested in Japanese popular culture not limited to anime and manga. The best part? This was a free event.
Scarlet Rhapsody was not there for most of the day time events. However, Erina Mano (Kai-Ki: Tales of Terror from Tokyo), Walter Jones (Power Rangers), Robert Axelrod (Power Rangers), Karan Ashley (Power Rangers), Steve Cardenas (Power Rangers), and Catherine Sutherland (Power Rangers). There was also an Akihbara style maid cafe running during the day. However, Scarlet Rhapsody covered the Club Max event during the evening hours.
Later during the day, Stan (Plastic Joint) ran into another special guest, Stan Lee. Club Max had an A-list guest list. Many of us grew up with Stan Lee comics and watching Power Rangers. This was a real treat for many of the Club Max patrons.
Stan and I were able to be there for the Yoshiki Foundation America Event. I have been acquainted with Yoshiki (X Japan drummer and pianist) at Anime Central 2010, but I did not like the way they presented him; midway through the cosplay contest. However, Club Max gave the exalted rock star the stage he needed to promote his charity organization. Additional beneficiaries included St. Vincent Meals on Wheels, Grammy Foundation, and Make a Wish Foundation of Greater Los Angeles. As someone who supports putting music and the arts back into education, I respect the Yoshiki Foundation's platform. We were shown a video of that Yoshiki Foundation's efforts to bring music to schools in need and there were people tearing up.
In addition to the Yoshiki Foundation America event, there was also Good Smile Company promoting their toys from Black Rock Shooter.
Club Max also showed off h.Naoto and Yoshiki's collaborative work on a new fashion line called NY in a runaway show set to X Japan music. The style incorporates goth, industrial, and visual street style all into one. I can already picture visual kei fans ordering these clothes on Yahoo Japan.
Club Max also hosted a cosplay contest in which Yoshiki picked his top five favorites for a chance to meet him backstage.
Of course, this would not be a Yoshiki Foundation America event without a rock show. The rest of X Japan went on stage for an accoustic performance of "IV." Toshi, lead vocalist, encouraged fans to sing along.
As the band was prepping up backstage, we were enticed that everyone in Club Nokia would be stars in an upcoming X Japan music video ("Born to be Free"). The stage was being prepped up for the video. People were waiting and chanting "We Are X!" The crowd was getting pumped. When the band finally returned on stage, everyone cheered. The music video was shot in four takes. Yoshiki wanted "bigger...big fire" for the last take. Out of all of the performances, the fourth one was the best. It was great rocking out to X Japan and I was very satisfied that I came.
Even after Club Max, people were still changint "We Are X!" upon leaving Club Nokia. Suffice to say, everyone had a great time and no one was dissapointed. Good smiles all around!
Many thanks to Chase Wang and Bam Marketing for Club Max. I look forward to more Club Max events in the future. Many thanks to Stan (Plastic Joint) for helping out with coverage and walking me back to the hotel at midnight. Of course, many thanks to the Yoshiki Foundation for supporting the arts in our schools!
Pictures are copyright by Scarlet Rhapsody . If I took your picture, feel free to use it on your site or cosplay gallery. While you're here, do sign the guestbook. This site was brought to you by the font Beauty School Dropout. Many thanks to Chaz Boston Baden for the image resizing and watermarking program.