Biography: ONE OK ROCK

2005-2006: Formation and Early Days

The foundation for One Ok Rock began when Toru Yamashita, then a high school student, wanted to start a band. He told his friend Ryota Kohama, a fellow member of the hip hop dance group Heads, to learn the bass and asked Alex Onizawa, who was their senior in school to join. He asked his classmate Tomo to play drums, who then left the band in 2006 to pursue an acting career. At that time, Taka Moriuchi was playing with another band named Chivalry of Music; however, Taka didn't enjoy playing with them, so Toru insisted that he join One Ok Rock instead. After signing with a label, Amuse, Inc. Tomo left the band because his parents didn't want their son to pursue that line of work. Tomoya Kanki had been teaching at ESP (Musical Academy) and was already in a band that wasn't going well. He then joined One Ok Rock in 2006, but only became an official member when they debuted in 2007.

The band's name, One Ok Rock, comes from "one o'clock", the time that the band used to practice on weekends. They chose to play at one o'clock in the morning because it was cheaper to use the rehearsal space during such hours. However, noticing that the Japanese language made no distinction between r's and l's, they changed "o'clock" to "o'crock" (or "o'krock"), which was then separated to become "ok rock".

2007-2009: Debut Album and Old Formation

Their debut single, Naihishinsho, reached number 48 on the Oricon Charts and sold 15,000 copies. Their second single, Yume Yume, followed that success and charted at number 43. After those singles, they released their debut album Zeitakubyō in 2007 and had their first tour, the Tokyo-Osaka-Nagoya Quattro Tour. They released their the second album Beam of Light in May 2008. In an interview with Rockin'On Magazine in June 2012, ONE OK ROCK said they didn't count this album as an album, but rather as a part of growing up as a band. When they made the album, they hadn't been in the right mood, but felt that they had to make it to grow as a band. The band came up with many sound sources and ended up making a punk album. The album's confused origins were the reason why they wouldn't play any songs from Beam of Light in live performances until now. Shortly after releasing Beam of Light, they performed a gig at Shibuya AX.

They had planned to release two albums in that one year, so they released Kanjou Effects in November 2008. At this point the band had gained more experience and were able to do some more serious recording. They settled into the western sound they loved and followed by replacing all their engineers and introducing their music to new producers. This led to some division within the band - Taka and Alex in particular disagreed about how to make this album.

On April 5, 2009, Alex was arrested for groping the leg of a twenty-one-year-old female student on a train. He admitted to the charges and the case was settled out of court. The band reached their weakest point at this time. Ryota intended to leave bass and take up guitar. They felt it was impossible for them to add a new member. The band's next single "Around the World Shounen", which was planned for a May 6 release and to be used as the theme song for the TV drama God Hand Teru, and their nationwide tour were both cancelled. In May 2009, it was announced that One Ok Rock would continue on without Alex, who went back to the United States. Toru took his place as lead guitar, and the band re-arranged their songs to be played for one guitar.

2010-2012: New Formation, Niche Syndrome and Zankyo Reference

With the new four-member formation, the band released the single "Kanzen Kankaku Dreamer" on February 3, 2010. It reached 9th on the Weekly Oricon Chart. They released their fourth studio album titled Niche Syndrome on June 9, 2010. The band had their tour This is my own judgement! in five Zepp music halls across the nation in 6 days, starting Sendai, Osaka, Nagoya, Fukuoka and ending in a 2-day concert in Tokyo. The second part the tour took place at sixteen different venues until 11 December 2010. They held a final performance in Nippon Budokan, Tokyo on 28 November, followed by the release of a concert DVD "This is My Budokan?!" on 16 February 2011. On August 6, 7 and 8, ONE OK ROCK headlined Rock in Japan Festival and Summer Sonic Festival, followed by Rising Sun Rock Festival, Monster Bash, Treasure05X, Mad Ollie, Countdown Japan 2010/2011, and Radio Crazy.

The band supported Pay Money to My Pain in their 2010 STAY REAL tour, TOTALFAT in their OVERDRIVE tour.

Their next single, "Answer is Near", was released on February 16, 2011. The Answer is Alive 2011 tour took place in six Zepp music halls and three other venues from April to June 2011. The band released their first double A-side single "Re:make/No Scared" on July 20, 2011, one of which's songs was the main theme for the Black Rock Shooter: The Game video game. The band's fifth album, Zankyo Reference, was released on October 5, 2011. ONE OK ROCK announced fourteen dates between November and December 2011 for the Zankyo Reference Tour. The band also announced their final tour for this album as a two-day concert in Yokohama Arena on 21 and 22 January 2012. This was their first time playing in Yokohama Arena, the biggest venue in Kantō region. The concert was sold out with more than 24,000 attendees. Later, the documentary of the Zankyo Reference Tour and the performance from the second night in Yokohama Arena was released on Blu-ray and DVD on 30 May 2012.

In 2011, ONE OK ROCK headlined many music festivals, including Jisan Valley Rock Festival in South Korea. In July the band headlined SETSTOCK 2011 and Jisan Valley Rock Festival, followed by Rock in Japan Festival, Rising Sun Rock Festival, Summer Sonic Festival, Monster Bash, Sky Jamboree, and Space Shower's Sweet Love Shower. At the end of the year, they headlined Radio Crazy and Countdown Japan once more.

The band declared their first overseas tour in Start Walking The World on May and June 2012, covering Japan, South Korea, Taiwan, and Singapore. 9mm Parabellum BulletMao Abe, Hello Sleepwalkers, and Crossfaith were the guest performers of their four concert dates in Japan. They headlined Rock in Japan Festival on the main stage, as well as Summer Sonic 2012, alongside Green Day, Franz Ferdinand and Rihanna. They also headlined Oga Namahage Rock Festival, Rising Sun Rock Festival, and Sweet Love Shower.11

2013-2014: Jinsei×Boku= and Worldwide Tour

Their next single, "The Beginning", was chosen as the theme song for the live action movie adaptation of the Rurouni Kenshin manga, and was released on August 22, 2012, reaching number 5 on the Oricon charts. Later in 2013, "The Beginning" won two awards - "Best Rock Video" from the MTV Video Music Awards Japan 2013 and a second award as Best Your Choice in Space Shower Music Video Awards. Currently "The Beginning" is the most popular song by the band, having reached more than 40 million views in their YouTube channel, and became the most watched Japanese rock video, further skyrocketing ONE OK ROCK's popularity.

The single "Deeper Deeper/Nothing Helps" was released on January 9, 2013 and hit 2nd place on the Oricon charts. The song "Nothing Helps" was used for the Japanese version of the video game DmC: Devil May Cry, and "Deeper Deeper" was used for the commercial of Suzuki Swift Sport in Japan.

Their sixth full-length Jinsei×Boku= was released on March 6, 2013 and managed to reach second place on the Oricon weekly chart.

In October 2013 the band went on their first tour outside Asia and visited Europe for five concerts. Four out of the five concerts in Europe were sold out almost immediately. In February 2014 they visited the US to hold two concerts in New York and Los Angeles and added two more dates in Philadelphia and Toronto in May. They also performed at Rock on the Range in Columbus, Ohio, their first festival outside Asia. In June and July 2014 they joined VANS WARPED TOUR 2014 and performed in eighteen cities in North America. On May 16, the documentary film about their last Europe and Asia Tour, "FOOL COOL ROCK" debuted and played for a limited time of four weeks at select theaters. This movie was directed by Hiroyuki Nakano. The documentary FOOL COOL ROCK will be released on DVD and Blu-ray in November 2014, and will include an extra screening from Bangkok, Thailand and Hong Kong.

2014-2015: 35xxxv, World Tour and U.S Debut

On January 12, 2014 their album producer John Feldmann tweeted that ONE OK ROCK had already started recording their new album. Their first single from the forthcoming album, "Mighty Long Fall", is the theme song for the movie sequel of Rurouni Kenshin. ONE OK ROCK released new single "Mighty Long Fall/Decision" in July 30, 2014. The song "Decision" is the theme song for their documentary film "FOOL COOL ROCK". A music video for "Decision" released in August 20, 2014 contains a compilation footage from their last tour in Europe and Asia. They also revealed the theme song for another movie sequel of Rurouni Kenshin entitled "Heartache".

In September 2014, ONE OK ROCK held a 2-day stadium concert in Yokohama Stadium in front of 60,000 people called "Mighty Long Fall Live at Yokohama Stadium 2014". This was their first time performing in a stadium. They played more than twenty songs, including three new songs and one cover of A Thousand Miles by Vanessa Carlton.

ONE OK ROCK announced USA, South America and Europe Tour in late 2014. They performed at Knotfest, in both Japan and United States, with an additional two dates for the United States in October. They visited Chile, Argentina, Brazil, Peru and Mexico for South America in November and France, Italy, Switzerland, Germany, Denmark, Sweden, Netherlands, Belgium, United Kingdom and Russia for Europe in December. They performed alongside Ghost Town in the US and UK, and with Tonight Alive and Mallory Knox for most dates in Europe. On November 27, they were a guest performer in Hoobastank's Japan tour.

On October 9, 2014, the band announced that new album will be released February 2015. The official website of the band was redesigned along with this announcement.

Around December 16, 2014, the band revealed the cover and name of their new Japanese upcoming album, 35xxxv.

In April 2015, they opened alongside with Finch for Yellowcard's U.S. tour. Following that, the band returned to Japan for their extensive album tour starting from May to September. The final concerts included bands like Issues and Against the Current. In July 2015, ONE OK ROCK officially announced that they signed with Warner Bros. Records and planned to re-release 35xxxv as a deluxe edition containing all English tracks on September 25, 2015. The band is set to have a North American tour in fall 2015 with a few selected cities as headlining artists, but will spend the majority of their time as the opening act for All Time Low and Sleeping with Sirens. ONE OK ROCK will also have world tour in Europe and Asia to promote their album.

Sources

ONE OK ROCK Official Website

Local Data of ONE OK ROCK

ONE OK ROCK's Official Music Channel

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