Formed in Japan in 1997, Dir En Grey has conquered the Japanese rock scene with lyrics that convey sorrow, darkness and anger in modern society. The band has received international critical acclaim for their masterful translation of the lyrics to their dramatic stage show, which includes self-mutilation and bloodshed.
A loyal and supportive fan base has helped boost the group to widespread international success, as indicated by their recent performance at Germany’s Rock Am Ring, an annual music festival that is considered one of Europe’s most prestigious, alongside such notable artists as Green Day, Motley Crue, Iron Maiden and Marilyn Manson.
Dir En Grey—vocalist Kyo, guitarists Kaoru and Die, bassist Toshiya, and drummer Shinya—became extremely popular almost immediately upon forming ten years ago, when they caught the attention of East West Japan. Their debut was marked by the simultaneous release of three singles, all of which reached the Top Ten.
Five albums later, Dir En Grey added to their international success by solidifying their presence in the US with the 2007 release of The Marrow of a Bone. The band has toured extensively in the US, including a run with Deftones and an appearance on Korn’s 2006 Family Values Tour.
While singing mostly in Japanese, Kyo, via his expressive voice, is able to transition effortlessly from a deep growl to theatrical vocals that transcend language barriers. The Los Angeles Times wrote that “Kyo is a staggering vocalist” and “has stockpiled an extreme range of vocal inflections, from a guttural mutter to a tonsil-ripping scream—no electronic effects needed.”
Currently the band is preparing for the release of Uroboros, their seventh studio album, which will hit shelves on November 11th, 2008 in the US through The End Records and a day later in their native Japan (through Firewall). Guitarist Kaoru comments, “Musically, this record is much heavier, harder, and crazier than The Marrow of a Bone, [b]ut you will also find songs with beautiful melodies.” Uroboros (literally, “tail-devourer”) is an ancient and nearly universal concept of cyclicality or infinity typically depicted as a serpent swallowing its own tail.
This marks the first time a Dir En Grey album will be released worldwide in one massive coordinated strike, and the band will be touring extensively in North American with The Human Abstract in support of the album. Look for Dir En Grey in a city near you this fall!
|Kyo (vocals), Kaoru (guitar), Die (guitar), Toshiya (bass), Shinya (drums)|