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edit Band Members
Yoshiki, real name Yoshiki Hayashi, is the creative driving force and diva of the group. He plays both drums and piano, and serves as the main songwriter and orchestra arranger for the band. Yoshiki’s skill in drumming/piano-playing/composing is only surpassed by the size of his ego, and rightly so, since he drums and plays the piano like a demigod. His extreme headbanging movements during drumming have caused tendonitis, multiple slipped discs, actual hospitalisation, and surgery, which shows just how seriously Yoshiki takes his headbanging. As Yoshiki plays both piano and drums, some X Japan songs are cleverly written to have a brief intermission so that Yoshiki can walk rapidly between instruments. Some songs don’t, but curiously, that doesn’t stop Yoshiki from appearing on two pianos at the same time. Yoshiki uses only the best Japanese Kawai pianos. He usually insists that his pianos be revolving at all times, because it’s really cool, and because playing on a revolving piano takes much more skill than playing on a stationery piano.
After the band disbanded, Yoshiki pursued a wide array of solo projects. He scouted and produced several famous J-rock bands, made classical music with Beatles producer George Martin, and even played piano for the Emperor of Japan. With his good friend Gackt, he formed a musical supergroup called S.K.I.N., which is made with the aim of attracting as many fangirls as they can while standing still on stage and doing absolutely nothing. Next, Yoshiki embarked on another solo project called Violet UK, collaborating with his good friend Nicole Scherzinger to see who can keep the least clothes on during a music video. With his other good friend Paris Hilton, Yoshiki produced the award-winning Repo! The Genetic Opera and wrote the background orchestra score for several of her sex tapes. Yoshiki also has his own racing team and brand of wine. In his current home in Los Angeles, Yoshiki now enjoys making BDSM-themed videos with actresses and models and also hires an extremely emotional guy to blog for him.
Toshi, real name Toshimitsu Deyama, is the co-founder and vocalist of the band. He is most recognizable as the guy with the rectangular hair in the early days of X Japan. Toshi's voice is usually described as an "acquired taste", as it has been called "beautiful, dreamy and full of emotion" and also "something akin to the high-pitched screeches of various dying farm animals". It can be agreed, however, that Toshi’s greatest talent lies in singing love ballads, specifically, the talent to look serious, sincere and romantic while decked in full leather, cakes of makeup and 2 feet of vertical hair.
X Japan disbanded in 1997 because of Toshi's decision to leave the band. It is said that Toshi became disillusioned by the life of sin and debauchery lead by X Japan, especially Yoshiki and hide, who are the people responsible for most of the sin and debauchery. Supposedly, this led Toshi to join a religious organisation, called "Home of Heart", which also provided Toshi with a back-up band "T-Earth", so that he can spread their environmentalist agenda throughout Japan. With his past excessive use of hairspray, Toshi perceived that he caused massive environmental damage and shamed all of his ancestors, and tried to offset his carbon footprint by playing "earth-friendly music" throughout Japan. This stopped when the religious organisation bankrupted him in 2005. With a lawsuit now underway, Toshi has left the cult and reunited with X Japan. Unfortunately, the later years of X Japan have not been good for Toshi. At whatever X Japan concert that Yoshiki did not decide to cancel, Toshi can usually be found screeching and croaking his way through many popular X Japan songs and making even his most loyal fans wince. To make fans forget about this painful experience, the band usually puts on one of those ever-useful hide guitar tracks, which will then cause any fan within earshot to scream and weep uncontrollably.
hide, real name Hideto Matsumoto, was the band’s religiously popular lead guitarist and a J-rock pioneer in his own right. He was usually the band member with the biggest hair, and in a band like X Japan, that’s saying something. Apparently, hide also thinks that big hair goes really well with equally big hats, and big hats go really well with lipstick, make-up and flashing neon lights. In life, hide was best known for his elaborate, blinding wardrobe, which consisted of neon kabuki robes, neon red polyester suits, garish neon yellow tracksuits, and shiny golden trenchcoats, among others. hide delighted in running and jumping around on stage while performing, which actually has a tendency to cause epileptic seizures in the audience, but he was usually forgiven because he looked so cool.
Since 1993, hide pursued a successful solo career that further cemented his legendary status. Free of his band and especially Yoshiki, he was allowed full expression of his creativity, which resulted in lyrics about "pervert mounds", vaginas and people sucking/licking things. Naturally, he became very popular with Japanese high school girls. He started a new band which he called Spread Beaver, and did vocals, guitars and bass, and essentially became a one-man-band with 7 random guys tagging along to hold his instruments. All of hide's songs and albums were wildly successful in Japan, and they were all about intercourse, drunken intercourse, gay intercourse, double entendres about intercourse, drugs during intercourse, and more intercourse. hide's live performances were as outrageous as his lyrics, and basically consists of him groping and making out with his long-suffering, male band members. His most notorious performance to date is a live rendition of “Dice”, where he was somehow allowed to appear on Japanese primetime television along with 50 or so naked, greasy, squirming men and women in cages, trying to grope him as he sang.
After his death, grief-stricken Japanese scientists came up with a way to render hide by hologram. This hide hologram can play guitar, strut around on stage, and make incredibly inappropriate remarks about its sexuality; a well-known example being: “Nothing like a line of cocaine after buttsex.” The hologram has reunited with X Japan during their 2008 Tokyo Dome performance, but it is currently out of action due to overconsumption of alcohol.
Pata, real name Tomoaki Ishizuka, is the quiet and unassuming rhythm guitarist of X Japan. Not much is known about him, other than that his harmonised guitar solos with hide are really cool. He is usually found playing his Gibson guitar while standing completely still and completely expressionless. The only thing he ever wrote for X Japan is "White Wind for Mr.Martin - Pata's Nap", which sounds exactly like its title, being a song that is really great to take a nap to.
Heath, real name Hiroshi Morie, is the bassist of X Japan. Even less is known about him, other than that he plays bass for X Japan and looks really cool in black.
Sugizo, real name Yune Sugihara, was the former lead guitarist of Luna Sea and current guitar holder in X Japan. Sugizo and his band were first scouted by hide, and then became one of the many J-rock bands later produced by Yoshiki. After pursuing a myriad of solo projects after the disbandment of his own band, Sugizo was persuaded to join X Japan in 2008. Having been deemed not competent enough to play most of hide's guitar solos, he usually stands at the very back while the hide hologram takes his place. This happened during a recent "Art of Life" performance, although Sugizo is usually allowed to play less challenging songs like "I.V." and "Jade". Sugizo was spotted on the violin during a recent live performance of "I.V.", but many people believe that it is actually Yoshiki in disguise, adding violin to the already impressive list of instruments that Yoshiki can play.
- ↑ For an example, check out the music video for “Endless Rain.”
- ↑ Including a song made up entirely of the word “Fuck”, aptly titled “Fucktrack #6”.
- ↑ Yes, a hologram. Youtube it.