X JAPAN

Heavy Metal / Non-Metal / Power Metal / Speed Metal / Symphonic Metal / Progressive Metal • Japan
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X (later changed to X JAPAN in 1992 to avoid confusion with the American punk band X) is arguably one of the most influential bands in the history of the Japanese music scene. Formed by childhood friends YOSHIKI and Toshi in 1982 at Chiba, Japan, X was originally founded to play high energy rock music. Besides being one of the first Japanese acts to achieve mainstream success while on an independent label, the group is widely credited for pioneering the visual kei movement.

The band consisted of Toshi (vocals), YOSHIKI(drums, piano, composer, lyricist), hide (guitar), Pata (guitar), and Heath (bass), and Taiji (bassist) until 1997 when they disbanded.

Once Yoshiki and Toshi recruited bassist Taiji and guitarists hide and Pata, the band began moving on the indie circuit. They garnished abundant support and fans across Japan with their outrageous dress style. They used long, dyed hair and
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X JAPAN Discography

X JAPAN albums / top albums

X JAPAN Vanishing Vision album cover 3.73 | 11 ratings
Vanishing Vision
Speed Metal 1988
X JAPAN Blue Blood album cover 4.00 | 9 ratings
Blue Blood
Power Metal 1989
X JAPAN Jealousy album cover 4.28 | 7 ratings
Jealousy
Power Metal 1991
X JAPAN Art Of Life album cover 4.14 | 15 ratings
Art Of Life
Progressive Metal 1993
X JAPAN Dahlia album cover 3.62 | 8 ratings
Dahlia
Heavy Metal 1996

X JAPAN EPs & splits

X JAPAN I'll Kill You album cover 3.00 | 1 ratings
I'll Kill You
Speed Metal 1985
X JAPAN オルガスム album cover 4.50 | 1 ratings
オルガスム
Speed Metal 1986
X JAPAN Skull Thrash Zone Volume I album cover 0.00 | 0 ratings
Skull Thrash Zone Volume I
Heavy Metal 1987

X JAPAN live albums

X JAPAN On The Verge Of Destruction album cover 4.00 | 1 ratings
On The Verge Of Destruction
Heavy Metal 1995
X JAPAN Live Live Live - Tokyo Dome 1993-1996 album cover 0.00 | 0 ratings
Live Live Live - Tokyo Dome 1993-1996
Heavy Metal 1997
X JAPAN Live Live Live Extra album cover 0.00 | 0 ratings
Live Live Live Extra
Heavy Metal 1997
X JAPAN Art of Life live album cover 4.50 | 1 ratings
Art of Life live
Progressive Metal 1998
X JAPAN Live In Hokkaido 1995.12.4 Bootleg album cover 0.00 | 0 ratings
Live In Hokkaido 1995.12.4 Bootleg
Heavy Metal 1998
X JAPAN The Last Live album cover 4.00 | 1 ratings
The Last Live
Heavy Metal 2001

X JAPAN demos, promos, fans club and other releases (no bootlegs)

X JAPAN I'll Kill You album cover 3.00 | 1 ratings
I'll Kill You
Heavy Metal 1984
X JAPAN Feel Me Tonight album cover 2.50 | 1 ratings
Feel Me Tonight
Heavy Metal 1985
X JAPAN Feel Me Tonight (2) album cover 2.00 | 1 ratings
Feel Me Tonight (2)
Heavy Metal 1985
X JAPAN Sexy Scandal Love Violence album cover 0.00 | 0 ratings
Sexy Scandal Love Violence
Heavy Metal 1985
X JAPAN Endless Dream album cover 3.00 | 1 ratings
Endless Dream
Heavy Metal 1985
X JAPAN X Live album cover 3.50 | 1 ratings
X Live
Heavy Metal 1985
X JAPAN Kurenai album cover 0.00 | 0 ratings
Kurenai
Heavy Metal 1986
X JAPAN Sexy Scandal Love Violence (1986) album cover 0.00 | 0 ratings
Sexy Scandal Love Violence (1986)
Heavy Metal 1986
X JAPAN Install album cover 0.00 | 0 ratings
Install
Heavy Metal 1987
X JAPAN CBS / SONY Audition album cover 4.00 | 1 ratings
CBS / SONY Audition
Speed Metal 1987
X JAPAN 紅 (Kurenai) album cover 0.00 | 0 ratings
紅 (Kurenai)
Heavy Metal 1987
X JAPAN Xclamation 88 album cover 4.00 | 1 ratings
Xclamation 88
Speed Metal 1988
X JAPAN 紅 (Kurenai) Sonic Sheet album cover 4.00 | 1 ratings
紅 (Kurenai) Sonic Sheet
Heavy Metal 1988
X JAPAN Kurenai Original Japanese Version album cover 4.50 | 1 ratings
Kurenai Original Japanese Version
Power Metal 1988
X JAPAN Stab Me in the Back album cover 3.50 | 1 ratings
Stab Me in the Back
Heavy Metal 1988
X JAPAN Kurenai / Endless Rain Promo album cover 5.00 | 1 ratings
Kurenai / Endless Rain Promo
Power Metal 1989
X JAPAN X album cover 0.00 | 0 ratings
X
Heavy Metal 1989
X JAPAN Endless Rain (Live Version in 武道館) album cover 4.50 | 1 ratings
Endless Rain (Live Version in 武道館)
Heavy Metal 1990
X JAPAN Message from X album cover 0.00 | 0 ratings
Message from X
Heavy Metal 1990
X JAPAN Silent Jealousy album cover 0.00 | 0 ratings
Silent Jealousy
Heavy Metal 1991
X JAPAN Art of Life album cover 3.50 | 1 ratings
Art of Life
Symphonic Metal 1993

X JAPAN re-issues & compilations

X JAPAN Symphonic Blue Blood album cover 3.50 | 1 ratings
Symphonic Blue Blood
Non-Metal 1991
X JAPAN A Music Box for Fantasy ~Yoshiki~ album cover 4.00 | 1 ratings
A Music Box for Fantasy ~Yoshiki~
Non-Metal 1992
X JAPAN Orchestra Selection: Blue Blood & Jealousy album cover 3.50 | 1 ratings
Orchestra Selection: Blue Blood & Jealousy
Non-Metal 1992
X JAPAN Symphonic Silent Jealousy album cover 3.00 | 1 ratings
Symphonic Silent Jealousy
Non-Metal 1992
X JAPAN X Singles album cover 3.50 | 1 ratings
X Singles
Heavy Metal 1993
X JAPAN Best Of - B.O.X. CD album cover 4.50 | 1 ratings
Best Of - B.O.X. CD
Heavy Metal 1996
X JAPAN Ballad Collection album cover 5.00 | 1 ratings
Ballad Collection
Non-Metal 1997
X JAPAN Singles - Atlantic Years album cover 4.00 | 1 ratings
Singles - Atlantic Years
Heavy Metal 1997
X JAPAN Special Box album cover 0.00 | 0 ratings
Special Box
Heavy Metal 1997
X JAPAN On Guitar album cover 5.00 | 1 ratings
On Guitar
Non-Metal 1998
X JAPAN On Piano album cover 4.50 | 1 ratings
On Piano
Non-Metal 1998
X JAPAN Star Box album cover 4.00 | 1 ratings
Star Box
Heavy Metal 1999
X JAPAN Perfect Best album cover 4.50 | 1 ratings
Perfect Best
Heavy Metal 1999
X JAPAN X Japan - Best-Fan's Selection album cover 5.00 | 1 ratings
X Japan - Best-Fan's Selection
Heavy Metal 2001
X JAPAN Rose & Blood [Indies of X] album cover 3.50 | 1 ratings
Rose & Blood [Indies of X]
Heavy Metal 2001
X JAPAN Trance X album cover 2.00 | 1 ratings
Trance X
Non-Metal 2002
X JAPAN Complete II album cover 0.00 | 0 ratings
Complete II
Heavy Metal 2005
X JAPAN 青い夜 白い夜 album cover 0.00 | 0 ratings
青い夜 白い夜
Heavy Metal 2007
X JAPAN X Japan Returns album cover 0.00 | 0 ratings
X Japan Returns
Heavy Metal 2008
X JAPAN X Visual Shock DVD Box 1989-1992 album cover 0.00 | 0 ratings
X Visual Shock DVD Box 1989-1992
Heavy Metal 2008
X JAPAN The World ~ 初の全世界ベスト album cover 0.00 | 0 ratings
The World ~ 初の全世界ベスト
Heavy Metal 2014
X JAPAN We Are X album cover 0.00 | 0 ratings
We Are X
Heavy Metal 2017

X JAPAN singles (21)

.. Album Cover
4.00 | 1 ratings
紅 ~ Kurenai
Heavy Metal 1989
.. Album Cover
4.50 | 1 ratings
Endless Rain
Power Metal 1989
.. Album Cover
4.00 | 1 ratings
Week End
Heavy Metal 1990
.. Album Cover
5.00 | 1 ratings
Silent Jealousy
Heavy Metal 1991
.. Album Cover
5.00 | 1 ratings
Say Anything
Power Metal 1991
.. Album Cover
3.50 | 1 ratings
Standing Sex
Heavy Metal 1991
.. Album Cover
5.00 | 1 ratings
Tears
Non-Metal 1993
.. Album Cover
5.00 | 1 ratings
Rusty Nail
Heavy Metal 1994
.. Album Cover
3.50 | 1 ratings
Longing (Night)
Non-Metal 1995
.. Album Cover
4.50 | 1 ratings
Longing (Unchained Melody)
Non-Metal 1995
.. Album Cover
5.00 | 1 ratings
Dahlia
Heavy Metal 1996
.. Album Cover
5.00 | 1 ratings
Forever Love
Non-Metal 1996
.. Album Cover
4.50 | 1 ratings
Crucify My Love
Heavy Metal 1996
.. Album Cover
3.50 | 1 ratings
Scars
Heavy Metal 1996
.. Album Cover
4.50 | 1 ratings
Forever Love (Last Mix)
Non-Metal 1997
.. Album Cover
5.00 | 1 ratings
The Last Song
Non-Metal 1998
.. Album Cover
4.00 | 1 ratings
Forever Love (Reissue)
Heavy Metal 2001
.. Album Cover
3.50 | 1 ratings
I.V.
Heavy Metal 2008
.. Album Cover
4.00 | 2 ratings
Jade
Heavy Metal 2011
.. Album Cover
3.00 | 1 ratings
Scarlet Love Song -Buddha Mix-
Non-Metal 2011
.. Album Cover
3.00 | 1 ratings
Born to Be Free
Heavy Metal 2015

X JAPAN movies (DVD, Blu-Ray or VHS)

.. Album Cover
4.00 | 1 ratings
Xclamation
Speed Metal 1987
.. Album Cover
0.00 | 0 ratings
Blue Blood Tout Bakuhatsu Sunzen Gig
Heavy Metal 1989
.. Album Cover
0.00 | 0 ratings
ThanX
Heavy Metal 1989
.. Album Cover
0.00 | 0 ratings
刺激! VISUAL SHOCK Vol. 2
Heavy Metal 1989
.. Album Cover
0.00 | 0 ratings
Celebration (Visual Shock Vol 2.5)
Heavy Metal 1990
.. Album Cover
0.00 | 0 ratings
Showcase in L.A. Premium Prototype
Heavy Metal 2010

X JAPAN Reviews

X JAPAN Art Of Life

Album · 1993 · Progressive Metal
Cover art Buy this album from MMA partners
Necrotica
Have you ever wondered about what would happen if we all had a soundtrack playing to our daily lives? Songs that represented our pain and sorrows, our triumphs and merriment, or the more complex thoughts in between? Think of the situation as a film; about 90% of the time, a wonderful soundtrack is capable of coloring a scene and making it feel larger than life, but slows down for the personal, intimate moments to balance things out.

X Japan (hailing from, you guessed it, Japan) had always been adept at capturing raw human emotional resonance in their songs, whether heavy or soft. Case in point: "I'll Kill You" from their first record Vanishing Vision was an exceptionally frenzied and violent affair a la Metallica's 80's thrash heyday, and yet "Crucify My Love" and "Tears" from their final (as of this review, but they're working on a new record) album Dahlia are quite possibly two of the most beautiful ballads to come out of their time. However, the crowning achievement in musicianship, lyrics, emotion, and just about everything else they've tapped into, is 1993's Art of Life.

First off, despite the record consisting of only the one titular song, that very song is 29 minutes, and goes through everything from speed metal, classical, symphonic music, progressive metal, power metal, pop, the works. The lyrics illustrate the vision of life and what it represents, its trials, love lost, love found, and continuing living even through any circumstance. The lyrics are impressive on their own, but mixed with Toshi's heartfelt wails, the experience feels downright cathartic. Even more impressive is how the song never loses focus; everything gels so wonderfully and nothing ever feels like extraneous baggage.

As the song begins with a longingly flowing piano line from Yoshiki, the symphonic backing grows and becomes grander by the second until Toshi belts out the first lines, and the song really gains momentum from that point on. What follows is a lightning-fast speed metal riff-fest reminiscent of Helloween's early days, and here the band start to really unfold their skills as musicians. Chaos ensues, with Toshi and everyone else engaging in a musical war; vocals fight against the blazing guitars, while the drums and bass guitar are cutting through the production cleanly and effectively.

The more intimate moments come in a few ways. One of these is the chorus, which sees several returns and lets Toshi show off his emotional side, coming close to resembling Journey's Steve Perry in quite a few of those spots. Also, in the middle of the tune, all the instruments fall out for an all-symphonic segment that could almost be expected from a grand fantasy movie like Lord of the Rings. The instruments come back in for the chorus, going for what you might think would be the end of the piece. But nope, we have a piano solo to listen to.

And holy fuck, it is amazing.

Not only is it a beautifully composed solo on its own, but the meaning behind the playing is perhaps what deserves a greater mention. The melody is simple enough; it's simple but sorrowful, a great way to inspire curiosity for what's to come. But then, as Yoshiki's playing becomes more complex, more dissonance starts to take place. The piano discord gets out of control as not one but TWO pianos are playing and overlapping one another. However, the main melody, while buried, still remains even as it takes so much heat from the rest of the madness attempting to crush it down.

To me, it's a symbol of how anything can be overcome, no matter what tragedy or pain strikes. No matter how tempting it may be to succumb to the lonesome darkness and give in, there's always that little glimmer hidden beneath the rubble, telling us we can carry on despite our past and our troubles. The solo fits that depiction so perfectly, especially when the symphonic backing fades in and takes over the discordant piano work completely. Think of the symphony as the redemption, the grand picture of promise unfolding before the listener's eyes.

After that, however, the frenzy sees a reprise as the assault of riffage bursts right in to carry the tune out. The singing is as triumphant as it can get, and the atmosphere of finality in the chorus is just, for lack of a better word, beautiful. Suddenly, the lyrics start to get even more meaningful and inspiring as the song comes to a close, and Toshi sings one last word in silence: life.

It's a sin that this album doesn't get the attention it deserves. It taps into what we think about everyday, what we feel, what appeals to us or drives us away. It's the essence of life itself and never lets the listener go until its thrilling finale. The musicianship is outstanding, the lyrics heartfelt and Toshi clearly took his time on them, and the message is brilliant and clear. I don't care if you have to buy this thing at a store, buy online, torrent it, whatever... just listen to it.

X JAPAN Art Of Life

Album · 1993 · Progressive Metal
Cover art Buy this album from MMA partners
renkls
I have the feeling I've grown out of this release a bit since my younger days where I adored it greatly. Contrary to some opinions, I don't ever feel this 29 minute single track album/EP is overlong, even with that daunting 8 minute piano solo in the middle.

This was probably one of the first albums that kick started my infatuation with the epic length track, and by comparison with other epics, it's pretty short. Still, 29 minutes for most people is a very long track. The style of this album is power metal with a great emphasis on melodic elements. Though power metal is not my forte, I rather enjoyed the long form style which X Japan employed in this album. It has a cohesive, flowing nature and never feels like a bunch of unrelated songs slammed together.

The guitar playing is technical, but doesn't feel showy beyond reflecting the theme of the music, which is alienation and existential crisis; probably why the piano solo seems so fitting to the piece - it works with two pianos that form an opposition, playing off each other until the structure begins to crumble into dissonant noisy clangs. A brief respite through an ambient interlude leads us back to the power metal finale.

The band has the good sense to keep the epic flowing and always progressive, which ensures it doesn't stay static, even with the piano, it never outstays its welcome. Of course, it's a divisive album, and many would say overlong, but for me, despite somewhat growing out of it, is still a great journey that I'd recommend any power metal fan to take.

X JAPAN Jealousy

Album · 1991 · Power Metal
Cover art Buy this album from MMA partners
Stephen
X Japan enjoyed a breakthrough success after releasing the critically acclaimed album, "Blue Blood" in 1989 and maintained their peak performance through their third album, "Jealousy", in 1991. X Japan was considered a pioneer in visual kei that's inspired many newer bands such as Glay, Luna Sea, and L'arc~en~ciel, a unique appearances that combined the elements from glam, goth, punk, and usually involving androgynous clothing style as well. "Jealousy" displayed a very diverse musical style of X Japan, ranging from power metal, melodic heavy metal, hard rock, thrash, and ballads.

"Silent Jealousy", which is one of their most popular track and also a concert-regular, is a brilliant power metal piece showing Yoshiki’s brutal side behind the drumkit while still emphasizes the song on the melodic harmonies of guitars and vocal. "Miscast" and "Desperate Angel" slower the tempo and both are great tracks with the latter featured a thrilling instrumental duel on the interlude part. "Voiceless Screaming" is a breezy acoustical ballad with Toshi's soothing voice brought to the front. Some furious thrashy riffs were unleashed on "Stab Me In The Back" while the instrumental experimentation of "Love Replica" is sadly my least fave track. Came on next, "Joker", a catchy hard rock which is a track that was loved by many fans. "Say Anything" is an epic AOR-ballad, a timeless classic with an anguish lyric, listen to Hide's pulse pounding guitar solo, you can feel the sorrow carved inside the agonizing notes, just beautiful.

X Japan is a very interesting band. All of the members are extremely-talented and skillful musicians. The mastermind, Yoshiki, for example, is a prominent pianist, songwriter, producer, and drummer at the same time. This is the last album to feature bassist Taiji Sawada and also one of the greatest legacies left by the late Hide who committed suicide in 1998. My only complaint on this album is if you count out three instrumental tracks here, you only get 7 tracks, and that's pretty short for a full-length album, otherwise this deserved a solid nine, and together with "Blue Blood", are my all-time favorite X Japan releases.

Bottomline : The Visual Shock still riding high!

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