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With a taste for big hair, gothic makeup, flashy costumes, and stage theatrics, alt-rockers LUNA SEA helped launch Japan’s glam-inspired visual kei movement in the ’90s. ∙ Known for his six-string wizardry, lead guitarist Sugizo incorporated psych-rock influences on the Top 10 hit “Rosier,” which won Best Promotional Video at the 1994 Japan Record Awards. ∙ Singer-songwriter Akino Arai guests on “In Silence,” from their Platinum-certified 1996 album, Style, which was the theme song for the Japanese broadcast of Chicago Hope. ∙ Moonlighting as a solo artist, frontman Ryuichi Kawamura went full J-pop with his 1997 chart-topper, Love, which sold more than 1 million copies the week it was released. ∙ The band ditched its flamboyant style and punk influences for a straightforward alt-rock sound on 1998’s Shine, which won Rock Album of the Year at the Japan Gold Disc Awards. ∙ During a 10-year hiatus in the 2000s, Sugizo joined visual kei vanguards (and former mentors) Japan X, and Kawamura formed pop-rock outfit Tourbillon with rhythm guitarist Inoran. ∙ Legendary British producer Steve Lillywhite called it a “huge honor” to work on 2019’s Cross, the band’s first release to top Billboard Japan’s Hot Albums chart.

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