When it comes to regional promotions, Japanese towns in search of escaping the shadow of the bigger cities in the country and showing off their local hidden gems often turn to the attention-grabbing song and dance routine of idol units. In the past we've seen areas in Japan promote themselves with idol units made entirely out of credit card company employees, young-at-heart grandpas, and one crazy mascot. Now Hyogo prefecture's Asago is using the mining history of it's Ikuno Ginzan to generate interest in the area--with 60 mannequin miners as its "underground idol group".

Once a valuable mining district and source of funds for warlords during Japan's Sengoku Period, Ikuno is now home to the Ikuno Silver Mine and Ikuno Mineral Museum. The town's mining history and valuable materials are on display, but it's not exactly booming with tourism at the moment. To remedy that, on-site mannequins have come together to form a 60-member idol group known as GINZAN BOYZ, in perhaps the most literal sense of "underground idol unit" yet. Local high school students helped record the debut single, which features museum mannequins come to life

Each of the members has their own name (there's even a Lemon), and it's said you can see them "in person" if you make a trip to Ikuno Ginzan. It may be a little creepy, but it's catchy enough and adds another layer to the ever-evolving idol scene.

By - grape Japan editorial staff.