Here is “The Road To Nabeshima” episode 3.
This time Tak tells you about what we were doing in the past 5 years including “The Extreme Tour Japan” and writing “Jesus Wind”.
We are looking back on the past right now, but hopefully we can talk about the future soon;)
Road To Nabeshima vol.3 – Music set us apart!?
Hi, this is Tak from Imari Tones, Japanese Christian metal band.
In this YouTube series, I’ve been talking about, our current situation and why Hassy&Jake, our basset and drummer left the band.
After all, we have been playing together for 10 years.
The first 5 years were great and everything went well, but the last 5 years were a little bit tough.
Today I wanna talk about what we were doing in those last 5 years.
Just like I told you in the previous video, we toured in the United States, 4 years in a row between 2009 and 2012.
We were doing great.
However, some of our band members were not passionate enough about playing music, so we could not reach for further tour and further success.
Even tough I wanted to do that, we couldn’t. Because rock band is a team thing. You can’t do it alone.
Instead we decided to put our passion on other thing.
That was, to convey God’s Love to Japanese people.
That also meant, getting together and teaming up with other Christian rock bands in Japan.
Back in 2012, we took part in The Extreme Tour.
The Extreme Tour was, a grass roots style Christian music tour in USA.
We toured with them, and that was when they asked us “Can we do this in Japan?”
We, immediately said “No”. “That is impossible.”
That was, because, Japan was very different from the United States.
Situation about music, situation about Christianity, very very different.
Japan is a Buddhism country and Christian population is very small.
Japan is a difficult country for Christian bands to tour.
Even more difficult for tours with a strong message, such as The Extreme Tour.
But in the end, we decided to do that anyway.
Because, we thought, “Well, it’s a mission from God”.
So we decided not to tour in USA anymore, but instead we started The Extreme Tour Japan. (We call it “XTJ”)
I met, talked, and consulted with many many pastors and people from Churches, Christian organizations,
but they all said “No”.
They all said “No, that is impossible.” “It will take so much money.”
That was totally understandable, because at first we felt the same way.
So, we couldn’t get almost any help from churches. They were not very helpful.
But we decided to do this tour in “Indie Band” style.
It was not pastors or churches who helped us. It was local musicians.
We invited Christian bands from the United States, Canada and Chile and we toured together.
We played small concerts in so many places, all over Japan.
and we did that 4 years in a row between 2013 and 2016.
That was an awesome experience.
Along the way, we met and acquainted with other Christian musicians in Japan.
We became good friends with them, and we decided to launch a record label together with them.
So, in 2015, we have launched Calling Records together with some other Christian bands. That was, supposedly, the first indie record label dedicated to Christian Rock in Japan.
It was a small label and probably it was a small thing.
But still, it was a very important thing for us.
In Japan, Christian Rock is almost no existent.
Now, it is our job to start it and bring it up, make it bigger.
We are doing it together with our friends.
Do you know how awesome job it is?
Calling Records is still a small group of musicians.
At this point, we are only known to small Japanese Christian community.
But we are putting shows together, playing music together and praying together.
One more good thing, musically, was,
While we were doing Christian music tours in Japan, trying to seek for salvation for Japanese people, we have became more aware of our identity as Japanese. We searched in our own souls and tried to think about our musical and spiritual roots.
We tried to find real Christian music for Japanese people. What Christianity really is, for Japanese people. After those soul searching efforts, we have finally found a real Christian Metal Music for Japanese people.
And that music became “Jesus Wind”.
We recorded the album in 2016.
It was a concept album about Japanese history.
A hidden spiritual history of Japan from Christian viewpoint.
If we had chosen to keep touring in USA, probably we would not have been able to make “Jesus Wind”.
Of course, we could have been more successful.
But instead, we have chosen to find real Christian Rock for Japanese people, to find spiritual salvation for Japan.
As a result, we have found “Nabeshima”.
“Nabeshima” is the ultimate sound from Imari Tones.
The ultimate Japanese Christian metal.
So what is “Nabeshima”?
Well, I’m going to tell you in another video about that.
But the truth is, because of this “Nabeshima”, we decided to part our ways.
“Nabeshima” was the very reason we went apart.
It was music itself, that let us go separate ways.
So, we gathered for music and split for music.
Our split was mutually amicable.
We were understanding each other.
We understood and agreed, that this band should take a new form, to go forward.
We agreed that, this band needed to change, in order to take a step ahead and make new music.
Hassy and Jake, they knew they had already reached to their limit.
Limit in music, limit in skill, and limit in life.
So please understand.
It was already difficult for them to continue what we were doing.
They have left, so that I can go to the next step, find new members, and play “Nabeshima”.
I want you to applaud them.
They did their job and they did it very well.
So thank you very much, Hassy and Jake.
We don’t have to be sorry.
Because, before we went separate ways, we had made another album.
One last album, with all Japanese lyrics.
It is called “Overture”.
We decided to call it “Overture”, because it is just the beginning.
This is a prelude for what’s to come.
This is a new beginning. That’s why we titled the album “Overture”.
In the next video, I will talk about the “Overture” album.
Because it is very different from our other albums.
Thank you very much.
Keep on rocking for Jesus.
God bless you all.