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Super Japanese Rock Band – L’arc~en~ciel a.k.a Laruku
It’s time for another top Japanese artiste / band profile. This time, it’ll be on L’Arc~en~ciel, or most commonly known among the Japanese fans as ‘Laruku’, since pronouncing their full band’s name properly is pretty difficult, even for me. L’Ar~en~ciel means Rainbow in French, in Japanese, Rainbow is pronounced as ‘Niji’. Laruku have been around for almost 18 years and they consist of four members:-
Takarai Hideto or more commonly known as Hyde, born on 29th January 1969 in Wakayama, Japan. The lead singer and main lyricist of Laruku and also the front person for the band, plus the one who looks young all the time. Hyde has solo projects, as well as his own independent record label called VAMPROSE. He married Megumi Oishi (a singer/model/actress/news reporter) in December 25th 2000 and was blessed with a son three years later.
Tetsuya Ogawa, also known as Tetsu, born on October 3rd 1969 in Osaka, Japan. He does the bass and has quite a flamboyant personality, in terms of dressing especially. Tetsu have also composed a few songs for Laruku on his own, and have his own solo work called ‘Tetsu69’. In 2007, he married a young actress, Sakai Ayana.
Kitamura Ken, also known as Ken, born on November 28th 1968 in Osaka, Japan. The guitarist and also the heaviest smoker in the band. Ken got this rather sloppy and much more rockish appearance than the rest of the band members. He’s also currently dating an AV model, Nagano Rei.
Yukihiro Awaji, in music professionally known as Yukihiro, born on November 24th 1968 in Chiba, Japan. Yukihiro is the drummer/composer/lyricist for the band, and most probably the most quiet and thin among all members. But don’t be fool by this guy’s physique, he is actually a major fan of Chocolates, Coke and McDonald FishMc.
Laruku is mostly known and famous for its many anime and game theme hit songs, like the one they perform for the movie ‘Final Fantasy: The Spirits Within’ which was released in the year 2001. The theme song was called ‘Spirit Dreams Inside’ by Laruku, right before they went to an almost 4 years hiatus. They’ve also made it through as theme song’s artist for the anime Mobile Suit Gundam 00, Devil May Cry, Fullmetal Alchemist etc.
Throughout their active period so far, up till today, they have produced 36 singles, 19 albums (including greatest hits and extended versions) and 24 Videos and VHS which include promotional videos and concerts DVDs. Their CDs and DVDs are worth buying if you’re a fan of Japanese rock, a great anime fan and just want to see a unique and extraordinary showmanship. (I’ve seen some and they’re awesomely intriguing)
Most of their songs are rock songs, even though a few of them may have that pop and ballad effects in the music as well. Laruku’s fans are everywhere – thus meaning, they have fans worldwide. They have performed in countries like the United States, France, China and Korea, and the lead singer cum songwriter cum music composer (Hyde) have also worked with many prominent figures in the Japanese music industry and other uprising artiste to produce more hit songs, for example like Gackt and Mika Nakashima.
For more detail about the band, you can check their official website www.larc-en-ciel.com
Here’s one of my most favorite L’Arc~en~ciel song! It’s called ‘Stay Away’. It is a track in their REAL album (which I like most) and was rather quite a hit song, as well as a hit PV…with all of them dancing in the end of the video clip – a rare sight ^0^