X Japan was a J-Rock / visual kei band that enjoyed immense popularity in the early to mid 90's. Started in the late 80's by guitarist Hide and drummer Yoskiki they were incredibly popular in Japan. The entire line-up is as follows:
  • Hide-guitar
  • Yoshiki-drums and piano
  • Patta-guitar
  • Heath-bass
  • Toshi-vocals
    Originally a man called Taiji was to play bass, but he quit before their popularity exploded and was replace by Heath.

    The reason I refer to them in the past tense is because they are no more. They split around '96 (I think) reportedly because each wanted to pursue his own solo career more. Unfortunately they can never get back together because in 1997 Hide died. The official report is that he hung himself with a towel from a doorknob, but foul play was never ruled out. Many people cannot believe that Hide would kill himself, because they say that in interviews and such that he always seemed so enthusiastic about his solo career. An attempt was made later to reassemble the group without Hide for a kind of final / in memory of Hide tour, but Yoshiki called it off because he said it just wasn't the same without Hide ( I feel I should mention that he and Hide were childhood friends). Yoshiki has since quit drumming and now is a succesful record producer.

    Their music style ranged from metal (i.e." I'll Kill You", "DAHLIA") to ballads (i.e. "Crucify My Love", "Voiceless Screaming"). I have to say this: any drummer who considers him or herself a drummer has to hear Yoshiki's 12 minute drum solo. If you have a file sharing program it shouldn't be hard to find. Anyone who is a fan of J-rock or metal should really check these guys out.