Japanese Metal & Hard Rock Bands A to Z

Август 30, 2016


MIHO MORIKAWA
Japanese Female AOR / Pop
1980s / 1990s
Recommended:
おんなになあれ CD 1987
Time-ize CD 1989
vocalization CD 1989
The Secret Of Blue Water Soundtrack CD 1990 (all songsy by Miho)
The Secret Of Blue Water Soundtrack CD Vol. 2 1990 (all songsy by Miho)
Pop the top CD 1991
Freestyle CD 1992
Voices CD 1992
A Holiday CD 1993
情熱の瞳 CD 1994
Hallow CD 1995
Solista CD 1996
Tasty CD 1998
½ Contrast CD 1999
Nude Voice CD 1999
Glad CD 2010

Excellent melodic rock/AOR from this successful female vocalist.


MIKI KAWASHIMA
Japanese Female AOR
1980s
Recommended:
Splash CD 1986
シンデレラたちの憂鬱 7 inch EP 1985
シルクのくちびる 7 inch EP 1985
Morning Side 7 inch EP 1986
シンデレラの憂鬱 CD Single 1988
Winding Road CD Single 1989

Very short, but excellent career by this 80s AOR/rock sensation from Japan.


MINAE OHUE
Japanese Female AOR
Early 1990s
Recommended:
Hard Rain CD 1989
Before the brand new days CD 1991
Bright & Shadow CD 1992
Primrose CD 1996

Early 90s Bon Jovi style AOR/Rock by this female singer from Japan.


MINAKO HONDA
Japanese Female AOR / Pop / Rock
1980s ~ 2000s
Recommended:
M’ Syndrome CD 1985
Cancel CD (feat. Gary Moore)
Minako in Budokan CD 1986
Minako Collection CD 1986
Oversea CD 1987
Dispa 1987 CD 1987
Dispa 1987 DVD 2005
美奈子・全仕事 CD 1987
Midnight Swing CD 1987
Look over my shoulder CD 1988
Temptation(誘惑) Single 1988
Junction CD 1994
晴れときどきくもり CD 1995
Honey CD Single 2000 (5 tracks)
Ave Maria CD 2003
新世界 CD Single 2004 (6 tracks)
CD 2004
本田美奈子BOX 6 CD + 1 DVD Set 2004
Life CD + DVD 2005
Amazing grace CD + DVD 2006
I love you CD 2006
心を込めて..CD 2006
優しい世界 cD + DVD 2006
Eternal Harmony CD + DVD 2008
Last Concert CD 2008
Complete Classical Years Box Set 2010
Again CD 2015

One of Japan’s most famous idols and performers of the 1980s, beloved by Japanese fans unlike any other.  Minako’s career and life ended abruptly when she passed away several years ago due to illness.  She remains known in Japan today by most music fans and is regarded as one of nation’s favorite AOR / Rock / Pop (and later Classical) vocalists.


MinstreliX
Japanese Neo-Classical Shred / Metal
2000s
Recommended:
CHRONOSTRINGS CD 2014
Tales Of Historia CD 2012
Reflections CD 2009

Neo Classical Super Shred (ala Dark Moor)


MINTMINTS
Japanese Hard Rock / Instrumental
2000s
Recommended:
Quadruple (2015)
Hell Train (4th album)
Love & Mints
Splash

Fantastic solo work from Shara (ex Earthshaker) featuring many notable players, including ex Show-ya guitarist.


MISSILES
Japanese Sleaze / Glam
2000s
Recommended:
SIDE A : 吸血ギター、そしてキスの雨 EP CD 2011

Sleazy glam / rock n’ roll from Japan.
 


MIYAZAKI AYUMI
Japanese AOR
2000s
Recommended:
Show You My Brave Hearts CD 2015

Well known artist for writing many top class AOR/rock anthems for Japanese films (anime, etc).


MODE
Japanese Female AOR / Rock
mid 1990s
Recommended:
No concept CD 1995
White rose CD 1996

Some fantastic, superbly produced AOR tracks delivered by these guys (along some more pop/rock radio friendly tunes).


MUNETAKA HIGUCHI
Japanese Hard Rock
1980s / 2000s
Recommended:
Destruction CD 1983
Free World CD 1997

Solo albums by Loudness drummer, the second of which featured an absolute top-class lineup of the biggest names in metal performing on the CD (I think every self-respecting rocker can recognize the singer on the provided video sample).


MURASAKI
Japanese Indie Classic Hard rock
2000s
Recommended:
Purplessence CD 2010
Quasar CD 2016

Deep Purple / Rainbow influenced hard rock.


MUTHAS PRIDE
Japanese Female AOR
2000s
Recommended:
Dream of the future CD 2016

Hurry Scuary/Bad Loser vocalist, ex 44 Magnum, Marino, Fort Knox guitairst, ex Moon Struck drummer.


MY MATERIAL SEASON
Japanese Melodic Death Metal
2000s
Recommended:
Awaking to the Piano Dramatic CD 2014
Desire in the Black Material CD 2016

Quite impressive melodic death metal outing from this Japanese upstart.


MYPROOF
Japanese Death Metal
2000s
Recommended:
Metal For Silent Fury CD 2012

 


NAMELESS ONE
Japanese Death Metal
2000s
Recommended:
Teller of the genesis CD 2015

 


NAMM
Japanese Indie Glam
1990s
Recommended:
Body Hacker CD 1996
namm
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
Very elusive indie glam/hard rock album.


NECROPHILIA
Japanese Thrash Metal
1990s
Recommended:
Man of pleasure CD 1995

Indie thrash metal outfit who released only one CD in 1995.


NIGHT HAWKS
Japanese AOR / FM Hard Rock
1980s / early 1990s
Recommended:
Night Hawks CD 1989
Night Hawks II CD 1990
風魔の小次郎 CD 1990
No satisfaction CD 1992
The midnight hawks CD 1994
Power of love CD 1994
Power in Live CD 1997

Major label hard rock/AOR from Japan.


NOAH
Japanese Indie Hard Rock / Metal
2002
Recommended:
Judgment Day CD 2002
noah
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
Difficult to find indie CD from these guys.


NoB / 山田信夫
Japanese AOR / Hard Rock
1990s
Recommended:
NoB 1st. CD 1994
HISTORY OF NoB CD + DVD 2006
Solo work from ex Grand Prix, Make-Up, P.A.F. vocalist.  A legend in Japanese hard rock/AOR/metal circles.


NOKEMONO
Japanese Classic Hard rock
1970s

Recommended:
From the black world LP 1979
Difficult to find hard rock album, very much in the style of Rainbow.


NORMA JEAN
Japanese Female Hard Rock
early 1990s
Recommended:
Free Market CD 1990
C’mon Bird CD 1992

 


NOVELA
Japanese Early 80s Traditional Heavy Metal
1980s
Recommended:
Miwakugeki (魅惑劇 / La songerie) CD 1980
In the night CD 1980
Paradise Lost CD 1981
Harmagedon Story (最終戦争伝説) CD 1983
Sanctuary CD 1983
Harmageddon Story 2 CD 1984
From the mystic world CD 1984 Live
Brain of Balance CD 1986
The Words CD 1986
Secret Takes CD 1993
Requiem CD 1994
ORIGINAL MEMBERS-~25th ANNIVERSARY BEST CD + DVD 2005
NOVELA SPECIAL BOX~director’s edition 15 CD/DVD Box Set 2013

Highly respected band among fans of early 80s Japanese metal.


OCTAVIAGRACE
Japanese Female Metal
2000s
Recommended:
Recollect Storia (4 track ep) CD 2015
Resonant Cinema (5 track EP) CD 2015

Another fantastic new female melodic metal group making waves in Japan.


ODIN
Japanese Symphonic Metal
2000s
Recommended:
Endless Journey CD 2014

Debut from Odin (of course… not the same U.S. Odin who delivered Fight for your life back in ’88).


ONMYO-ZA / 陰陽座
Japanese Female Enka Metal / Death / Speed (unique…)
2000s
Recommended:
Entire Discography

One of the most successful Japanese metal bands over the last 10-15 years, they deliver a very unique style of metal.  I can’t think of a single band who sounds exactly like them.  They combine everything from symphonic metal to power metal, thrash, even- traditional Japanese enka music.


OTOKOGUMI / 男闘呼組
Japanese AOR
1980s / early 90s
Recommended:
Entire Discography

One of the most popular AOR groups in Japan in the late 80s- their hits to this day are well known by most people in Japan.


OUTRAGE
Japanese Heavy / Thrash Metal
1980s ~
Recommended:
Black Clouds CD 1988
Blind to Reality CD 1989
The Great Blue CD 1990
The Final Day CD 1991
Spit CD 1993
Life until deaf CD 1995
Who we are CD 1997
24-7 CD 2002
Cause for pause CD 2004
Outrage CD 2009
Discovery Box CD + DVD Set 2010
Outraged CD + DVD 2013

No introduction needed.  Easily one of the top 10 best known Japanese metal groups.


P.A.F. (Patent Applied For)
Japanese AOR / Hard Rock
1990s
Recommended:
スーパー・バリュー CD 2001
Love & Fake CD Single 4 tracks 1998
Patent applied for CD 1998
PAT.#0002 CD 1999

AOR / Hard Rock (feat. Nobuo ex Make Up, Grand Prix, Daisy Laisy?) and Pata (X Japan).


PAMELAH
Japanese Female AOR
1990s
Recommended:
Truth CD 1995
Pure CD 1996
Spirit CD 1997
Hearts CD 1998
ism CD 1999

Excellent female AOR/Rock.


PASSION ROSE
Japanese Indie Glam
1990
Recommended:
Big Deal CD 1990

Elusive indie glam release from these guys.  Only one CD released (self financed by the band) before they vanished in the early 90s.