Dir en grey
is a Japanese band formed in 1997 and currently signed to Firewall Div., a sub-division of Free-Will. As of 2008, they have released six full-length records and while the group's lineup has remained consistent since its inception, numerous stylistic changes have made its music's genre difficult to determine (though it is generally considered to be a form of rock music). Originally part of Japan's visual kei movement, the band has opted for less flamboyant attire in recent years.
Dir en grey have enjoyed notable success in Asia, Europe and North America,
Billboard commenting on the group's international popularity, that it "has transcended the language barrier in the United States through its music" and "gained its audience without singing in English".Style and subject matter
Dir en grey's format has been subject to change throughout their career, initially being a rather experimental form of hard rock. Some tracks of their debut album Gauze also demonstrated a distinct pop appeal, which was largely dropped in favor of a more progressive sound on the following albums, Macabre and Kisou. While up to that point some songs had already been more fast-paced, raw and aggressive than others, the band's music took a decisive turn with the release of the EP Six Ugly, from then on sporting more metal influences in general. Dir en grey's style has since been gravitating towards riffs and song structures more along the lines of contemporary North American fusion genres, such as nu metal and metalcore.
All lyrics are written by vocalist Kyo and deal with subjects such as society, mass media as well as sexual obsessions and love, usually with negative implications. The vocabulary varies from subtle to explicit and several songs rely heavily on double entendres and other wordplay, often involving the multiple meanings of a kanji character. Members
As with numerous other Japanese bands, the members of Dir en grey are credited with their given or stage name, the names of Kyo and Kaoru usually being written in kanji. While there has been speculation among fans, the artists' full names are not a matter of public knowledge.
Kyo – vocals
Kaoru – guitar,° backing vocals
Die – guitar,° backing vocals
Toshiya – bass guitar, backing vocals
Shinya – drums
°Both Kaoru and Die perform on acoustic and electric guitars.Discography
Withering to Death. (2005)
The Marrow of a Bone (2007)^_^ Ето и момченцата.. ^_^ Kyo
(born on February 16, 1976 in Kyoto) is a Japanese musician and the lead vocalist and lyricist of Dir en grey. He has been with the band since its inception in 1997 and was previously the frontman of La:Sadie's.
While he has only composed a handful of Dir en grey's songs (for example, "The Domestic Fucker Family" and "Hades"), Kyo is responsible for all the lyrics, which usually have negative implications and touch on a variety of dark, sometimes taboo, subjects, such as sexual obsessions ("Zomboid"), abuse ("Berry"), and mass media ("Mr. Newsman"). Several songs deal with specifically Japanese issues, such as the country's casual attitude towards abortion ("Mazohyst of Decadence" and "Obscure") and its conformity-oriented society ("Children").
The vocabulary used ranges from vulgar to exalted, with wordplay and double entendres occurring frequently, often connected to the multiple meanings of certain kanji characters. For example, the title of the song "Tsumi to Batsu" (which is about rape) reads as "Crime and Punishment" but when the kanji are turned backwards the title reads "Mitsu to Tsuba" which means "Honey and Saliva."
His stage presence has reached a level of infamy, as it is not only very energetic and emotional, but also littered with shock elements such as full-body makeup resembling heavy burns, fake vomit of varying color and consistency, and various acts of self-mutilation. However, the authenticity of the latter is not always clear, given how frequent certain practices occur, sometimes firmly in place within a tour's usual setlist. For example, Kyo would regularly engage in fish-hooking during the performance of "Kodoku ni Shisu, Yueni Kodoku." throughout the It Withers and Withers and Inward Scream tours. Throughout his career, Kyo has been hospitalized multiple times, once in 2000, due to hearing problems (remaining partially deaf in his left ear and again in 2006 with inflamed vocal cords.Kaoru
(February 17, 1974, in Hyōgo) is a Japanese musician and one of the guitarists of Dir en grey. He has been with the band since its inception in 1997 and was previously a member of La:Sadie's. He has composed most of Dir en grey's songs (at least up to the Vulgar album, at which individual credits for the music were dropped). His contributions display a fair amount of variety, ranging from slow ballads such as "Zakuro" to upbeat numbers like "Jessica". He performs many solos for the band, which vary strongly in feeling and tempo, similar to his compositions. Kaoru uses guitar amplifiers and cabinets by Diezel.Die
(born December 20, 1974, in Mie) is a Japanese musician and one of the guitarists of Dir en grey. He has been with the band since its inception in 1997 and was previously a member of La:Sadie's. Die is the second most credited composer within Dir en grey (after fellow guitarist Kaoru) and his songs tend to be more upbeat, such as "304 Goushitsu, Hakushi no Sakura", "Wake" and "Mr.Newsman".Toshiya
(born on March 31, 1977 in Nagano) is a Japanese musician and the bassist of Dir en grey. He has been with the band since its inception in 1997, although he was not in La:Sadie's, as the other four previously had been. Unlike fellow band members Kaoru and Die, Toshiya has only composed a handful of Dir en grey's songs, such as "Erode" and "Bottom of the Death Valley". Unsurprisingly, his compositions tend to have a distinct, bass-driven sound.Shinya
(born on February 24, in Osaka, Japan) is the drummer of Dir en grey. He has been with the band since its inception in 1997 and was previously a member of La:Sadie's. Shinya has composed a handful of songs for Dir en grey, his compositions alternating between melodic ("Hotarubi", "Fukai") and upbeat tunes ("Raison Detre", "Umbrella").