Sony Apologizes for Japanese Pop Group Keyakizaka46's Nazi-like Outfits

Sony Apologizes for Japanese Pop Group Keyakizaka46's Nazi-like Outfits
Due to some less than acceptable creative choices these past few years, Nazi-like imagery has appeared in the work of everyone from Nicki Minaj to Babymetal knockoffs. The latest instance has prompted Sony Music Japan to issue a public apology after a Japanese pop group performed in outfits resembling Nazi military uniforms.

During a live performance on October 22, Japanese teen act Keyakizaka46 dressed in black knee-length dresses that resembled military jackets, along with capes and hats emblazoned with an eagle emblem. While the label insists there were no links to Nazism in the performance, the U.S.-based Simon Wiesenthal Center called on both Sony Music Japan and the group's producer for an apology.

"Watching young teens on the stage and in the audience dancing in Nazi-style uniforms causes great distress to the victims of the Nazi genocide," Rabbi Abraham Cooper, associate dean of the Wiesenthal Center, said in the statement.

"We express our heartfelt apology for causing offence...because of our lack of understanding," Sony Music Japan said in a statement posted on its website. "We take the incident seriously and will make efforts to prevent a recurrence of a similar incident in the future."

Following "shock and dismay" from the the Wiesenthal Center in 2011, Sony Music Artists Inc. apologized for rock band Kishidan dressing up like Nazis on a national TV broadcast. Keyakizaka46 formed in 2015 and topped Billboard Japan singles charts with their song "Silent Majority" earlier this year.