J-Rock in Poland

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April 27, 2011 by zssedu

J-Rock in Poland… It’s not a new thing and not underground, like some people can think. Japanese rock music is getting increasingly popular in our country and, thanks this, our country is getting more noticed by the artists themselves.

For everyone, who thinks, that J-Rock is some new fabrication of modern, bored teenagers – it’s anything but new, ‘cause J-Rock began advancing in the 1960s. I, a Pole, have listened to J-Rock for four years and others, my friends, much, much longer. It’s just all because of really a simplifield way of get japanese music – everyone can “try” it, listen and download and there are no boundaries, so the strenght of fans is still growing.

I have not idea when J-Rock came to Poland. It’s not present in TV or newspapers – the only way, how we can hear about it, is the Internet. I can just guess – people are interested in anime and manga and it’s almost natural that their interests can “convert” to J-Rock. But where did this all come from 10 or 15 years ago? I guess only the Japanese knew this, and, maybe tourists who arrived in Japan – and later brought this music to their own country.

But, actually, what is – J-Rock? This genre is defined as a music genre but cross-refers also to all Japanese music. J-Rock impies everything: from Pop-rock to hard-metal. It can also have some elements of punk, symphonic music and alternative. Bands, meaning J-Rock groups, combine these, that there are… well, Japanese. And aren’t subject to J-Pop.

J-Rock has got some of its own genres which create the  artist’s image. Visual Kei – men and women wear very fancy, usually gothic, clothes; Oshare Kei – sweet, colourful bands which play  light music; Nagoya Kei and other. So, if you associate J-Rock with “those men in dresses” your imagination is totally wrong. Or – incomplete.

Bands… In Poland one of the most popular are, in my opinion, Di ren Grey, X-Japan, The GazettE or the singer Miyavi.

X-Japan is a legend of J-Rock. Set up in 1982, the heavy metal band released 23 albums and 18 DVDs. X-Japan terminated in 1997 but in that same year came back and are still playing. The most popular is Dir en Grey, slowly slinging to the bag of classics. There are also other bands and single artists who are so controversial and, for our, Polish realities, almost unnormal, that most of people can just not like it and, of course, they’ve got a right to this. But teenagers are increasingly spanning for actually things like this – controvercial and so different from our.

You’re asking – what is the chance for a concert in Poland by one of those bands? The answer is – from longer time – much higher. As I said, Poland is increasingly rising in tours of J-Rock bands. Dir en Grey will play their already third concert in our contry in August. In the last twenty months we have had a chance to hear in Poland, among other things: D’espairs Ray, -OZ-, UnsraW and young bands – Guild and Orochi.

But it’s not all.

Recently, on 10th April, Miyavi, a Japanese guitarist and vocalist, played in Gdansk . Tickets sold out in four days and the effect was that the concert had to be relocated to another place and their number raised twice! And the concert was absent from both the TV and the press – the only way of getting information was the Internet.

I had a chance to be there and I’ll tell you something – it was far better, by a long shot, than all of recently concerts which I went to previously. Wonderful contact with the public, the degree of Miyavi’s music competence (who is, in my opinion, one of the best guitarists on the world), the setlist, in which we could interfered a little bit and amusing one-minute silence for the bereaved in crisis Japan – this everything made me want to scream that I’m proud of being a fan od J-Rock. Because I am. And I like talking about it.

So, if you want – don’t be afraid, don’t be ashamed and don’t be shilly-shally – even if part of the fans seems like a scary brood of freaks, even if you don’t like men with make-up and in dresses… This is not about it! Try to listen to this music, feel if in your hearths, and maybe soon you too will be repeating, like me: yeah, I’m fan of J-Rock!



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