LUNA SEA

major - active (1989 - )
LUNA SEA's music is very difficult to define. The band possesses a unique style that combines darker genres such as punk, metal and gothic rock with ethereal ballads and catchy pop tunes. This makes the band equally accessible to both their original visual kei fanbase and their more mainstream fans. This signature sound, combined with shocking costumes and make-up, made LUNA SEA one of the most influential visual kei bands of their time.

Their music is unpredictable, seeming to re-invent itself with each new release. In fact, besides the mysterious atmosphere of their songs, J’s fast, driving basslines and RYUICHI's charismatic vocals, very little seems to stay consistent from one album to the next. This constant evolution is surely one of the band’s main strengths, and it has helped them remain one of Japan’s most respected rock bands to this day.

LUNA SEA originally ceased activities in 2000, but in 2010 they announced a full reunion. Since then, they have not only released new material, but have also toured both nationally and overseas.
author: Ma'J, vulpix - translation: Polochon (2012-12-11)
line up
LUNACY first performed at the Machida PLAYHOUSE in Kanagawa to an audience of only fifteen people. Their line-up has remained unchanged since then, with RYUICHI on vocals, SUGIZO as lead-guitarist, INORAN on rhythm-guitar, J on bass and Shinya on drums. The band’s members all come from different social backgrounds, but were united by their common love for playing punk-rock music.

Three months after their debut, the band released their first demo-tape, Lunacy, which they sold at their shows. In December of the same year, they recorded more demos, including Shade, which was released in December 1989, and Lastly. The latter was distributed in June 1990 at Machida PLAY HOUSE. To celebrate their first anniversary, they held the famous Kurofuku gentei GIG concert, which was limited to people dressed in black clothes.

Thanks to their unique sound and striking looks, a magazine took notice and decided to publish their photo. This photo greatly helped their exposure throughout Japan, so much so that just seven months after their debut, LUNACY were playing in more venues and to larger crowds.

Their self-produced first album was released on April 21 1991. This release saw the band change its name from LUNACY to LUNA SEA. Many songs from this album became LUNA SEA classics, such as TIME IS DEAD, BLUE TRANSPARENCY, MOON and PRECIOUS.... The album sold well and won the band many fans.

After going major, the band opened their fanclub, SLAVE, in 1992. They played a concert at Shibuya Koukaido to celebrate the occasion and tickets sold out within 30 minutes. Their first major album, IMAGE, came out on May 21 and included fan favorites such as WISH and Déjàvu. In 1993, they released their first single, BELIEVE, and their second album, EDEN.

The following year, the band released an album called MOTHER. In order to write this album, the members decided to isolate themselves from the rest of the world. Their tour, MOTHER OF LOVE, MOTHER OF HATE was followed by one of LUNA SEA's most famous concerts, the LUNATIC TOKYO, which was held at Tokyo Dome.

However, after the release of the album STYLE on April 22 1996, the band announced that they would go on hiatus to allow the members to pursue solo careers. To the relief of many fans, the hiatus did not last long, and the five members of LUNA SEA reunited at Akasaka BLITZ on December 17 1997.

Their next album SHINE, which was released in July 1998, saw the band’s sound become more pop-oriented and the members discard a great deal of their visual kei image. It was followed by their SHINING BRIGHTLY tour, which was co-produced by Disney since INORAN had written the ending theme, BREATHE, for the movie "Mulan".

In January 1999, LUNA SEA played three concerts outside of Japan, traveling to Taipei, Hong Kong and Shanghai. The mini-tour across Asia seemed to rejuvenate the band, and for their 10th anniversary they planned a giant concert: LUNA SEA 10TH ANNIVERSARY GIG [NEVER SOLD OUT] CAPACITY∞. Unfortunately, a giant storm in Tokyo destroyed a large part of the stage. However, that didn't prevent the concert from being a huge success as 100,000 people attended. The five members of LUNA SEA came on stage via helicopter; just as The Beatles had once done a few decades before. The band also released their first live album, NEVER SOLD OUT.

On January 1 2000, LUNA SEA rang in the new millennium with a concert at ZEPP Tokyo. They played Sweetest Coma Again at this concert, which was composed by J and used as the Japanese ending song for a James Bond movie. On June 25 at their PREMIERE OF LUNACY 2000 concert, the band gave fans a taste of their forthcoming album. This album, LUNACY, offered a dynamic mix of styles, with songs both violent and calm.

On November 8, during their BRAND NEW CHAOS ACT II tour, the band made an announcement that devastated fans everywhere: LUNA SEA was disbanding. Although none of the members would officially say they were splitting up, the band would not continue activities and thus, in effect, was over. LOVE SONG was the last maxi-single that LUNA SEA released. December 27 marked what was to be their last concert, appropriately titled THE FINAL ACT. Afterward, the members of LUNA SEA all went on to pursue solo careers or play with other bands.

In 2007, LUNA SEA reunited for a live on Christmas Eve called GOD BLESS YOU ~ONE NIGHT DEJA VU~. The event was aired live on TV and a DVD of the concert was later released. However, there were no plans to release any other new material as the band intended the reunion to be merely temporary. In 2008, LUNA SEA was revived once more in order to take part in the hide Memorial Summit.

In 2009, no announcements were made regarding the band's status, but both INORAN and RYUICHI hinted in interviews that more reunion concerts might follow.

In 2010, however, the formal announcement fans had been waiting for arrived. On May 29 2010, which was the date of both the band’s twenty-first anniversary and a full moon, LUNA SEA opened official Twitter, Facebook and Youtube accounts. They then began uploading a new video to their Youtube account after each full moon until finally, on August 25th, they announced that they would be holding a press conference in Hong Kong.

During this press conference, which was streamed worldwide, LUNA SEA announced they would be embarking on a full reunion and a world tour. The tour, entitled 20th Anniversary World Tour Reboot -to the New Moon- took the band to Germany, the U.S., Hong Kong and Taiwan, and was scheduled to end with a pair of shows in Japan on the 23rd and 24th of December.

However, the band later added a free concert on Christmas Day called Lunacy Kurofuku Gentei GIG -the Holy Night-, where the audience was required to wear only black clothing. This concert was heavily geared towards the celebration of the band’s early career, with the word “lunacy” in the title being a reference to the band’s former name and the dress code a reference to similar shows from their indie days.

As of 2011, the band are signed with Avex Group and have released a revamped version of their debut album, LUNA SEA, as well as a live album and DVD entitled LUNA SEA 3D IN LOS ANGELES.

After the Tohoku earthquake and tsunami, the band released their first new song since reuniting. PROMISE was released exclusively on Amazon websites as a digital download, with all of the money it earned going to the Japanese Red Cross. The band also announced a charity concert called LUNA SEA for Japan A Promise to The Brave which has been scheduled for October 22 at Saitama Super Arena. All proceeds will once again go to the Japanese Red Cross.

LUNA SEA have proven themselves to be a band that strive for excellence in everything they do. Now that they have returned, one can’t help but wonder what the future holds for this remarkable group.
author: Ma'J, vulpix - translation: Polochon (2012-12-11)
links


advertisements
  • euroWH
  • SYNC NETWORK JAPAN
  • Chaotic Harmony