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X Japan
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Musicians
    (1982- )
    Born in Chiba, Japan
    Japanese metal/glam band
    Main members:
    Toshimitsu 'Toshi' Deyama, vocals
    Yoshiki Hayashi, drums and piano
    Hideto 'Hide' Matsumoto, lead guitar (1987-97)
    Tomoaki 'Pata' Ishizuka, rhythm guitar
    Taija Sawada, bass guitar (1985-92)
    Hiroshi 'Heath' Morie, bass guitar (1992-97,2007- )
    Yuni 'Sugizo' Sugihara, lead guitar and violin (2008- )
    Broke up in 1997, reunited in 2007
    Recorded the albums 'Vanishing Vision' (1988), 'Blue Blood' (1989), 'Jealousy' (1991), 'Art of Life' (1993) and 'Dahlia' (1996)
    They initially called themselves 'X' while trying to think of another name, but the name stuck.
    They eventually had to change the name to X Japan because X was already taken by an American band.
    Band members are referred to by a single name.
    In their early days, they sported insanely huge hairdos.
    Their song 'Art of Life' is 29 minutes long.
    When Hide died from hanging (May 2, 1998), three fans killed themselves in copycat suicides.
    They are Japan's biggest rock band ever, with over 50 million records and videos sold.
    According to the New York Times, when the band members cut their hair in the mid-90s, 'thousands of Japanese girls wept openly in the streets.'
    They incorporated influences from classical music into their songs.
    Despite Hide's death, the band still considers him a member and introduces him at their concerts.

Credit: C. Fishel


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