The X Japan guide for Lollapalooza
The purpose of this entry is to familiarize X Japan with those who will be attending this years Lollapalooza festival in Chicago on August 6th – 8th. In particular, it is aimed at people who are not acquainted with their range of work and are curious to know; who they are and what they offer. I won’t be dwelling too much on history or discographies, but instead I shall be providing a possible setlist (based on recent shows) and other general information regarding the band’s appearance at Lollapalooza.
[A Brief History]
X Japan is:
- Toshi – Vocals (1982–1997, 2007–present)
- Pata – Guitar (1987–1997, 2007–present)
- Sugizo – Guitar, Violin, backing vocals (2008–present)
- Heath – Bass, backing vocals (1992–1997, 2007–present)
- Yoshiki – Drums, Piano (1982–1997, 2007–present)
X Japan was formed in 1982 in Chiba Japan by Yoshiki Hayashi and Toshimitsu Deyama. While the band started out as a heavy metal outfit, their sound has developed throughout the years to incorporate elements of hard rock, progressive metal and featured a large emphasis on power ballads. The band during the early 90’s were notable for their glam rock influenced attires, but throughout the years this has since been toned down.
After achieving substantial mainstream success during their tenure, the band decided to break up in 1997.
The band reunited in 2007 and provided a song for the movie SAW IV which marked their first exposure to a western audience. The band followed this up with successful comeback shows in Tokyo, Hong Kong and Taiwan.
The following is a collective suggestion of songs that might be played during their one hour slot at Lollapalooza. The list is based upon previous setlists since their reunion, audience preference, and marketability.
*The total length of the following songs falls within their probable one hour slot*
Rusty Nail: Almost unanimously chosen as their opening song.
Week End: Very often follows Rusty Nail.
Silent Jealousy: A crowd favourite and one that showcases all of the band’s talent.
JADE: One of their newer songs to date that also features a lot of English lyrics.
*NEW* BORN TO BE FREE: X Japan have recently announced that ‘Born to be Free’ will be their newest song and that they will be playing it at Lollapalooza. Details concerning the song are minimal at this current time of writing, but I’ll be sure to update this entry as soon as I get new information regarding the song
Kurenai: The one song that has been played at almost every single X Japan concert since the late 80’s.
I.V: Their offering to America is almost guaranteed to be performed. The short length of the song also adds to the probability that it will be played.
X: The trademark closer to their shows.
The band’s encore consists usually of a long ballad usually in the form of Endless Rain. Due to time constraints and the demographic of the audience, it would seem unlikely that the band would finish with this song.
Songs like SCARS and DRAIN may be favourites for some, but they don’t encompass the true ability of the band and therefore would not be suitable.
There is no doubt that the band’s collections of ballads are very popular with a lot of fans. However, due to their lengthy performances and frequent use of audience participation, it would not seem appropriate for Lollapalooza and would be rather anti-climatic.
The pink-haired guitarist is the late Hideto Matsumoto who was formerly the band's lead guitarist. The band still consider him to be a member and often make tribute to him during their performances.
Thank You and have a great time at Lollapalooza!