You en gray
|You en gray|
|origin||Osaka , Japan|
Progressive Metal , Extreme Metal ,
Alternative Metal , Deathcore
Dir En Gray ( stylized as Dir en gray until 2006 ) is a Japanese band from Osaka, founded in 1997 . They are often referred to as a visual kei band because they have become known as such and are among the most successful performers in this genre . Due to the increasing musical and optical change in recent years, they are often assigned to the more general term J-Rock .
The band name consists of three words, each taken from a different language: “Dir” from German, “en” from French and “gray” from English. When the band was founded, the members believed that “dir” was the German word for “ silver coin ”, the band name should accordingly mean “gray silver coin”. This is also reflected in the name of the fan club magazine 灰色 の 銀 貨 (Haiiro no Ginka) , which is the Japanese translation of the band's name. The name should convey a musical image that is neither black nor white, which is why they chose gray.
Kyo already knew the name before the band was founded, according to Kaoru, the band name is taken from a song by the befriended band Lareine with the title "Dir en gray". The song begins with the sentence 灰色 の あ な た に dir en gray (Haiiro no anata ni dir en gray) , which is also the actual translation of the words. Why Dir En Gray believed that “dir” was the German word for “silver coin” is unclear, but they became aware of their mistake over time.
Bandleader Kaoru has already commented on this question several times and says that the name had a meaning at the time the band was founded, but that is no longer true, and that the name no longer means anything. The name was chosen because it sounds right and reflects an image that is unique.
Foundation and first successes (1997-2000)
Dir En Gray was founded in the spring of 1997 by four of the five former members of the indie group La: Sadie's . They teamed up with the support guitarist of the band D † L , Toshiya, who took the position of bassist in the new band. First, the band gave a concert on January 24th under the name DEATHMASK , where they covered about four songs by the band Kuroyume . On February 2nd the official formation of the band took place under the name Dir en gray . After the release of the mini- album MISSA and the singles JEALOUS and -I'll- , which climbed to number 7 in the Japanese Oricon charts , Yoshiki ( X Japan ) took them on and produced the three singles ア ク ロ の 丘 ( Akuro no Oka) , ゆ ら め き (Yurameki) and 残 -ZAN- , which were released at the same time and all three entered the top 10 of the Oricon charts. This was followed by two more singles and finally their first album GAUZE , for which there was a tour, as well as a video with a complete visualization of all songs on the album. In 2000 they released a video / DVD with the final concert of their first major Japan tour in Osaka-jo Hall, as well as other singles and their second album MACABRE . So En Gray were established as a fixture in the Japanese visual kei scene.
Change of style and international success (2001-2007)
Further albums and tours in Japan followed before the band left Japan for the first time in 2002 after the release of the album 鬼 葬 (Kisō) to give concerts in Shanghai , Hong Kong , Taiwan and Korea . After the release of the album Withering to Death. on March 9, 2005 in Japan, they gave their first appearance in Germany on May 28, 2005 in the Columbiahalle in Berlin . A total of 3500 visitors came to the concert. In addition to appearing in Berlin, the band also performed at Rock am Ring on June 3, 2005 and Rock im Park on June 4, 2005. This was followed by a concert in Paris on July 24, 2005 and a performance at the Octopus Rock Festival in Belgium on July 29, 2005.
After they gave three concerts in the USA in March 2006 , Dir En Gray performed again in Germany. On the one hand, they could be seen on May 27, 2006 in Berlin's Columbiahalle and then on May 28 in Cologne's E-Werk, and shortly afterwards they performed again at Rock am Ring and Rock im Park. In the summer of 2006 Dir En Gray performed again in the USA during the “Family Values Tour” and in spring 2007 further concerts followed in North America , including in Toronto , Canada . On February 7th 2007 a new album was released in Japan with the title THE MARROW OF A BONE . In the summer there were many performances at various festivals , as well as concerts in Dresden , London and Munich and other performances in the United States.
In September 2007 a new tour was announced based on the title of the new single DOZING GREEN , which was then released in Japan on October 24, 2007 and on October 26 in Germany. At the end of November 2007 Dir En Gray opened two shows by Linkin Park as part of the Linkin Park Japan Tour 2007 in the Saitama Super Arena . In December another Japan tour was announced as part of the band's tenth anniversary. On December 19, 2007, two best-of albums, DECADE 1998-2002 and DECADE 2003-2007 , were released.
Another change of style and band break (2008–2012)
At the beginning of 2008, Dir En Gray started recording the new studio album. The first tour of the year took place in May 2008. It was another Japan tour "Tour 08 Death over Blindness". Finally, En Gray played three shows at Shinkiba Studio Coast on May 28th, 29th and 30th. On May 4th, 2008 the band played together with X Japan , Luna Sea , Oblivion Dust, MUCC , D'espairsRay , the Underneath and heidi. at the “hide memorial summit”, which was held on the tenth anniversary of the death of the famous Japanese guitarist Hide .
On September 10th, 2008 the new single GLASS SKIN was released and at the same time the second Japan tour of the year, "Tour 08 The Rose Trims Again", began. The tour started with two shows at Shibuya AX in Tokyo , which could only be attended by [a knot] members, and ended with two shows at Zepp Sapporo on October 10th and 12th, 2008.
The North American offshoot of “The Rose Trims Again” tour also took place in November in 22 cities in the USA and Canada . On November 12th the seventh studio album UROBOROS was released in Japan, which was also released in Germany two days later. The album contains 13 tracks, including the English versions of the two singles DOZING GREEN and GLASS SKIN . On December 24th, 25th and 26th, 2008 En Gray played three Christmas concerts under the name "-BAJRA-" in Yokohama Blitz. On December 29, the band performed at Osaka- Jo Hall, where they gave their first major concert nine years earlier. In addition to some old songs, such as ain't afraid to die or Mr.NEWSMAN , the entire album UROBOROS was played there for the first time . On December 31st, at 11:55 p.m., the New Year's Eve concert began in Namba Hatch (Osaka).
In January 2009, En Gray took part in the “ Kerrang! Relentless Tour 2009 ”in Ireland and Great Britain . At the beginning of February 2009 the "Tour 09 Feast of V Senses" started. In addition to the usual appearances in large halls, so-called “male only” concerts were held in smaller cities and clubs in Japan. In the summer of the year, the band also returned to Europe and performed several times in Germany, in Saarbrücken , Munich, Dresden and Berlin.
On December 2nd, 2009 Dir En Gray released the single 激 し さ と 、 こ の 胸 の 中 で 絡 み 付 い た 灼熱 の 闇 (Hageshisa to, Kono Mune no Naka de Karamitsuita Shakunetsu no Yami) . After two days of sold out shows at Nippon Budokan and the publication of a photo collection and video material from the Budokan concerts, En Gray has announced further activities abroad. They will then take part in the SONISPHERE Festival in Knebworth and perform on August 3, 2010 in KOKO, London. Further appearances in Europe followed, including A. in Russia.
With the “Paradox of Retaliation” tour, En Gray returned to Europe in 2011. Three concerts in Germany were also planned. On August 6, 2011, they performed at the sold out Wacken Open Air Festival. On August 13, 2011 they played in the Bochum colliery . The tour through Germany was concluded with the concert on August 21, 2011 in the Columbia Club in Berlin. According to the organizers, the concerts were sold out after just a few hours. A novelty was the public criticism of Japanese politics after the nuclear reactor disaster in 2011, which they made public with their website “Scream for truth”.
In February 2012, the band announced an indefinite break from the band. The reason for this are singer Kyo's vocal cord problems. The planned "The Still Reckless" tour through North America has been canceled. At the beginning of July 2012, at a meeting of Dir En Gray representatives and the A Knot fan club, it was announced that singer Kyo was on the mend and the band was in the process of producing new songs.
ARCHE and The Insulated World (since 2013)
In June 2013, En Gray returned to Europe as part of their “Tabula Rasa” tour and again played at the Download Festival and the Nova Rock Festival during the tour . Later that year they returned to the US and Canada as part of their "Ghoul" tour. In February 2014 the band played for the first time in Australia at the Soundwave Festival . On March 8th and 9th they performed again in the great Budokan. A Japan tour that took place in August 2014 ( TOUR14 PSYCHONNECT - mode of “GAUZE”? - ) and the DVD release of their appearance in the Budokan Hall ended this tour cycle. On August 5th of that year the ninth studio album with the title ARCHE was finally announced for December 10th, 2014, accompanied by the "TOUR14-15 BY THE GRACE OF GOD". Concerts within Europe were added to the “The Unstoppable Life” tour through Japan. a. Berlin and Dortmund, which took place in May 2015.
On September 26th, 2018 the band released their tenth album, “The Insulated World”, after which they toured Europe with two concerts in Germany.
Dir En Gray's musical beginnings have their roots in the music scene of the visual kei bands. Typical for this subculture is a strong mixture of different musical genres , which can also be found in Dir En Gray. While MISSA (1997) and GAUZE (1999) can still be seen as relatively calm and balanced, the band began with the albums MACABRE (2000) and 鬼 葬 (Kisō) (2002) to increasingly play heavier songs, not just one Contrasted with earlier pieces, but sometimes stood out in the context of the respective album (e.g. The Domestic Fucker Family ).
With the release of six Ugly (2002) and VULGAR (2003), the band began to play more uniformly in the direction of Metal and also changed optically, as the elaborate costumes and decorations were discarded and darker, simpler clothing was worn. These changes met with different reactions from the band's fans. On the one hand, there was and is criticism that you let En Gray be too influenced by western Nu-Metal bands, on the other hand there are also voices that advocated the band's progress and further development.
The album Withering to death , released in spring 2005 . was already considered to be very metal- heavy, although there were also quieter pieces like 悲劇 は 目 蓋 を 下 ろ し た 優 し き 鬱 (Higeki wa Mabuta o Oroshita Yasashiki Utsu) or 愛 し さ は 腐敗 に つ き (Itoshisa wa Fuhai ni Tsuki) .
With the release of the single AGITATED SCREAMS OF MAGGOTS in November 2006, the band sparked a lot of controversy in their fan base. From many quarters the song was seen as pure metalcore and the lyrics were criticized for being unusually simple and simple. With THE MARROW OF A BONE , released in February 2007, this wave of criticism subsided , as the album is a fairly balanced mixture of calm and hard songs. However, resentment was expressed again because of the almost exclusive use of English song titles and a large proportion of English-language lyrics and text passages.
En Gray consistently continue their musical change on the album UROBOROS 2008. Dark, brutal and with an oriental touch in places, UROBOROS delivers a completely new sound image and an unfamiliar side of the quintet. Apart from the two catchier single releases GLASS SKIN and DOZING GREEN , the album mainly comes up with heavier passages and idiosyncratic song structures. Despite, or perhaps because of, this enormous variety, the album was widely heard around the world.
In 2011 the album DUM SPIRO SPERO was released , which consistently continued the path laid out by UROBOROS . The key points of the album are the unusually deeply tuned guitars and the singer's idiosyncratic art of singing.
Dir En Gray's lyrics are all written by singer Kyo. The features mentioned here therefore refer not only to the songs of the band, but also to some of the poems published by Kyo.
Kyo's lyrics share some common features. So they never have a happy ending , because the singer hates that according to his own statements. Many of his texts are also difficult to decipher because they contain numerous symbols and metaphors . The stories in the songs are often only hinted at and in most cases leave a lot of room for speculation and interpretation. In addition, there are language games such as exploiting inaccuracies in the Japanese language , for example the use of homophonic words - and the use of unusual Kanji .
Kyo writes mostly in Japanese. However, he also frequently uses other languages, especially in his lyrics. In the early days of Dir En Gray it was German or Russian, now it's mainly English. The extent to which foreign languages are used varies from individual words, such as Schwein の 椅子 (Schwein no Isu) , Bottom of the death valley or THE IIID EMPIRE , to completely non-Japanese texts such as Deity , Hydra , Child prey or AGITATED SCREAMS OF MAGGOTS .
Different topics are addressed again and again in the songs and have become a kind of trademark for Kyo's lyrics. These include: death, murder, suicide, self-harm, rape, pain, child abuse, unhappy and desperate love, loneliness, grief, and the superficiality of people. As a result, many of the lyrics are very dark, emotional and sometimes very aggressive. Kyo occasionally uses insults ( Я TO THE CORE , CLEVER SLEAZOID ) or pictorial representations of crime and extreme violence ( OBSCURE , 鴉 -karasu- , GRIEF ). In contrast, there are also very sensitive lyrics ( 蛍 火 (Hotarubi) , 蟲 -mushi- ) and songs that take on almost ballad-like traits ( ザ ク ロ (Zakuro) , THE FINAL ).
The stories told or suggested in the texts often remain a question of interpretation and often cannot be clearly assigned to Kyo's point of view. One text is apparently written from the point of view of a dead person ( ア ク ロ の 丘 (Akuro no Oka) ), another from the point of view of a fetus that is being aborted ( mazohyst of decadence ) and other texts or parts of them from the perspective of a female person ( embryo , JEALOUS ).
In their music videos, Dir En Gray use explicitly brutal and macabre scenes and recordings, some of which led to censorship in Japan and brought criticism. This is obviously expected by the musicians and in general a lot of fans assume that the band wants to address aspects of Japanese society or people in general with their music that they or their generation perceive as problematic and thus to think about these problems want to stimulate.
Dir En Gray have performed in the same line-up since they were founded in 1997. With the exception of Toshiya, all members were together in the band La: Sadie's , which was founded in December 1995 .
京 (Kyo) , born February 16, 1976 in Kyōto Prefecture , Japan , wrote the lyrics for all of the band's songs in his capacity as singer. In addition to these, there are another five songs and numerous poems that he has published in his poetry books. Kyo's singing is extraordinary because of his vocal range and his talent for producing unusual tones and noises. In a review of Uroboros, Sputnik Music says: "I challenge you to find one singer in any genre with more range than this guy."
In his youth, Kyo said he never wanted to make music. He only changed his mind when he heard about bands like X Japan , Kuroyume and Buck-Tick . He took an interest in visual kei and tried his hand at guitar and bass with mediocre success. Since he didn't like either, he began working as a singer and songwriter.
Although he generally holds back in public, Kyo is the focus of the action on stage. He is particularly known for his dramatic and sometimes quite shocking appearances. He often used fake blood, scratched his chest with his fingernails, hit himself in the face until it was bleeding, hit his chest with the microphone or cut his arm and chest with fine needles. At the moment, however, he refrains from this and expresses himself through gestures and facial expressions, although now and then he still practices so-called "fish-hooking" on himself until he starts to bleed.
Before he switched to La: Sadie's , he was a member of many different bands, best known by name are his first band 月 蝕 (Gesshoku) , Viṣṇu , Masquerade , 婦 夜 婦 夜 (Puyopuyo) , 狂 殺 会 (Kyōsatsukai) and the session band 廃 人 黒 薔薇 族 (Haijin Kurobarazoku) . In 2013, Kyo founded sukekiyo . In September 2014 Kyo traveled with sukekiyo for the 雨 上 が り の 優 詩 (Ameagari no Yūshi) tour through Europe and performed in Berlin and Bochum.
薫 (Kaoru) , born on February 17, 1974 in Hyōgo Prefecture , Japan , is Dir En Gray's first guitarist and the so-called leader , i.e. the person who takes care of all problems that arise. Kaoru has been playing the guitar since his late teens. His desire to make music professionally was influenced by X Japan and especially their guitarist hide . In 1996 Kaoru became a member of the band La: Sadie's , replacing the former guitarist Shio. Before that he played for CHARM . Kaoru has composed quite different songs for Dir En Gray, including Cage , MACABRE - 揚 羽 ノ 羽 ハ 夢 ノ 蛹 - (MACABRE -Sanagi no Yume wa Ageha no Hane-) , ザ ク ロ (Zakuro) and JESSICA .
Born on December 20, 1974 in Mie Prefecture , Japan , she is the band's second guitarist. He previously played in the band Ka ・ za ・ ri and is known for his fondness for the color red, which is expressed in the design of some of his guitars and mostly also in the color of his hair. His musical contributions include 24 個 シ リ ン ダ ー (Nijūyon-ko Shirindā) , 予 感 (Yokan) , 304 号 室 、 白 死 の 桜 304-gōshitsu, Hakushi no Sakura , 理由 (Wake) , undecided , Mr.NEWSMAN and DRAIN AWAY .
Toshiya, born March 31, 1977 in Nagano Prefecture , Japan , is the band's bassist. He is the only non-member of La: Sadie's been and played previously as a support bassist in the band GOSICK and as a support guitarist for D † L . He contributed songs like Erode , egnirys cimredopyh +) an injection and Bottom of the death valley .
Born on February 24, 1978 in Osaka Prefecture , Japan , is the youngest member of the band and occupies the position of drummer. Inspired by early concert visits by school bands and by his idol Yoshiki from X Japan , he decided early on to become a musician. He was also a member of La: Sadie's before , he also played as a drummer with Siva , Ruby and together with Kyo with 廃 人 黒 薔薇 族 (Haijin Kurobarazoku) . The pieces he wrote for Dir En Gray include 虜 (Toriko) , ゆ ら め き (Yurameki) , 蛍 火 (Hotarubi) and umbrella .
|2005||Withering to Death.|
|2007||THE MARROW OF A BONE|
|2011||DUM SPIRO SPERO|
|2012||UROBOROS [Remastered & Expanded]|
|2018||The Insulated World|
|2018||VESTIGE OF SCRATCHES|
|1999||ア ク ロ の 丘||GAUZE|
|ゆ ら め き|
|太陽 の 碧|
|2001||ain't afraid to die||None|
|か す み|
|2004||THE FINAL||Withering to death.|
|2005||CLEVER SLEAZOID||THE MARROW OF A BONE|
|2006||凌辱 の 雨|
|Agitated Screams of Maggots|
|2009||激 し さ と 、 こ の 胸 の 中 で 絡 み 付 い た 灼熱 の 闇||DUM SPIRO SPERO|
|蜜 と 唾||iTunes Store / Live-limited|
|2014||SUSTAIN THE UNTRUTH|
|2016||詩 踏 み||The Insulated World|
|2018||人間 を 被 る|
|2019||The World of Mercy|
|1999 年 12 月 18 日 大阪 城 ホ ー ル||live|
|2001||TOUR 00⏩01 MACABRE|
|2003||列島 激 震 行 脚 FINAL 2003 5 Ugly KINGDOM||live|
|TOUR04 THE CODE OF VULGAR [ism]|
|2006||TOUR05 It withers and withers -Bootlegged-||live|
|TOUR05 It Withers and Withers|
|2007||DESPAIR IN THE WOMB|
|2008||IN WEAL OR WOE|
|2009||A KNOT OF|
|TOUR08 THE ROSE TRIMS AGAIN|
|TOUR09 FEAST OF V SENSES|
|2010||UROBOROS -with the proof in the name of living ...- AT NIPPON BUDOKAN||live|
|2012||TOUR2011 AGE QUOD AGIS Vol.1 [Europe & Japan]|
|TOUR2011 AGE QUOD AGIS Vol.2 [US & Japan]|
|2013||「A knot」 LIMITED -2012.10.10 SHIBUYA-AX-||live|
|TOUR12-13 IN SITU-TABULA RASA|
|DUM SPIRO SPERO AT NIPPON BUDOKAN|
|2015||TOUR14 PSYCHONNECT -mode of “GAUZE”? -|
|AVERAGE PSYCHO 2|
|2016||ARK AT NIPPON BUDOKAN||live|
|2017||TOUR16-17 FROM DEPRESSION TO ________ [mode of VULGAR]|
|TOUR16-17 FROM DEPRESSION TO ________ [mode of DUM SPIRO SPERO]|
|TOUR16-17 FROM DEPRESSION TO ________ [mode of 鬼 葬]|
|TOUR16-17 FROM DEPRESSION TO ________ [mode of UROBOROS]|
|TOUR16-17 FROM DEPRESSION TO ________ [mode of THE MARROW OF A BONE]|
|2018||TOUR16-17 FROM DEPRESSION TO ________ [mode of MACABRE]|
|TOUR16-17 FROM DEPRESSION TO ________ [mode of Withering to death.]|
|DOCUMENTARY OF TOUR16-17 FROM DEPRESSION TO ________|
- 「楓」 ~ if trans… ~ CRYSTAL VIDEO BOX clip video (January 15, 1998)
- 「楓」 ~ if trans… ~ clip video (July 8, 1998)
- 妄想 統 覚 劇 Clip video (October 7, 1998)
- 妄想 格外 劇 Live Video (October 7, 1998)
- GAUZE-62045- Clip-Video (November 17, 1999)
- 1999 年 12 月 18 日 大阪 城 ホ ー ル Live video (February 16, 2000)
- TOUR 00⏩01 MACABRE Deep [-], Deep [-], Deep [-], Deep [er] Live-Video (2000)
- TOUR 00⏩01 MACABRE live video (July 25, 2001)
- 鬼 門 clip video (March 20, 2002)
- 列島 激 震 行 脚FINAL 2003 5 Ugly KINGDOM Live Video (May 21, 2003)
- GAUZE (1999)
- MACABRE (2001)
- 鬼 葬 (2002)
- six Ugly (2005)
- VULGAR (2005)
- Withering to death. (2010)
- THE MARROW OF A BONE (2010)
- UROBOROS (2011)
- DUM SPIRO SPERO (2013)
- THE UNRAVELING (2013)
- Dir en gray や ろ う ぜ (1999)
- 視 覚 [a dead angle] (2000)
- DRAGON FLY (2002)
- 「×haben」 A pilgrimage capsizing the Islands 2002 ASIA THE JAPANESE F ×phia KER FAMILY (2002)
- 我 (2003)
- THE MANIPULATED LIFE (2005)
- DIR EN GRAY GUITAR BOOK feat. 薫 & Die (2008)
- SHANKARA (2008)
- SHANKARA -breathing- (2008)
- DIR EN GRAY BASS & DRUMS BOOK feat. Toshiya & Shinya (2010)
- OUROBOROS (2010)
- AMON (book + CD, 2011)
- DIR EN GRAY OVERSEAS DOCUMENTARY GREED (2012)
- MINERVA - 輪 郭 - (2012)
- MINERVA -THE UNRAVELING- (2012)
- Official website (Japanese and English)
- Profile at the band's German label
- Discography of DIR EN GRAY with chart positions on the respective album
- Dir en gray on Bee Friday (1998) . YouTube. August 9, 2017. Retrieved October 16, 2018.
- Apres Guerre # 19 (March 1997)
- Dir en gray feature interview. ( Memento of the original from September 26, 2007 in the Internet Archive ) Info: The archive link was inserted automatically and has not yet been checked. Please check the original and archive link according to the instructions and then remove this notice. blistering.com, June 13, 2008
- DIR EN GRAY Performing In London This August! . Musicjapanplus . April 30, 2010. Retrieved April 30, 2010.
- DIR EN GRAY will be Landing Russia for the First Time This Year . Musicjapanplus . May 18, 2010. Retrieved May 18, 2010.
- Dir en gray - Uroboros Review . sputnikmusic. Retrieved December 21, 2010.
- DIR EN GRAY の 作品 . In: ORICON STYLE. Retrieved September 2, 2016 (Japanese).