Ellegarden Best: A Retrospective of Japan's Punk Rock Legends
Ellegarden was one of the most influential and popular punk rock bands in Japan, with a unique style that blended English lyrics, catchy melodies, and energetic performances. The band went on an indefinite hiatus in 2008, leaving behind a legacy of six studio albums and numerous singles. To commemorate their career, a greatest hits album titled Ellegarden Best (1999-2008) was released on July 2, 2008, featuring some of their most memorable songs from their active years.
The album contains 21 tracks, spanning from their debut album Don't Trust Anyone But Us (1999) to their last album Eleven Fire Crackers (2006). The songs showcase the band's evolution from a raw and energetic punk rock outfit to a more polished and diverse rock band, incorporating elements of power pop, alternative rock, ska, and emo. Some of the highlights include \"My Favorite Song\", a fast-paced anthem that opens the album; \"Kaze no Hi\" (Windy Day), a melodic and emotional ballad; \"Space Sonic\", a hard-hitting rocker with a sci-fi theme; and \"Salamander\", a catchy and upbeat tune that was used as the opening theme for the anime Eureka Seven.
The album also features some rare tracks, such as \"Mr. Feather\", a b-side from the single \"Space Sonic\" that was also included in the Nano-Mugen Compilation 2008; and \"Koukasen\" (Elevated), a bonus track from the Japanese edition of Eleven Fire Crackers. The album received positive reviews from critics and fans alike, who praised the band's musical diversity, creativity, and charisma. The album also charted well on the Oricon charts, peaking at number 7 and selling over 50,000 copies.
Ellegarden Best (1999-2008) is a must-have for any fan of Ellegarden or Japanese punk rock in general. It is a testament to the band's talent, passion, and legacy, and a reminder of why they were one of the best bands in Japan.
Although Ellegarden has been on hiatus for over a decade, their music and influence still live on. Many fans and musicians have expressed their admiration and respect for the band, and some have even covered their songs or collaborated with them. For example, the band ONE OK ROCK, who are also known for their English lyrics and rock sound, have cited Ellegarden as one of their main inspirations and have performed with them on several occasions. The band also appeared in the documentary Fool Cool Rock, which followed ONE OK ROCK's world tour in 2014.
Ellegarden's members have also pursued their own solo projects and activities during their hiatus. The vocalist and guitarist Takeshi Hosomi formed the band the HIATUS in 2009, which explores a more experimental and alternative rock sound. The guitarist Shinichi Ubukata formed the band Nothing's Carved In Stone in 2008, which plays a more progressive and hard rock style. The bassist Yuichi Takada joined the band 9mm Parabellum Bullet in 2009, which is known for their heavy metal and punk rock influences. The drummer Hirotaka Takahashi joined the band MONOEYES in 2015, which is led by the former vocalist of the American band Allister.
Despite their hiatus, Ellegarden has not officially disbanded and has left the door open for a possible reunion in the future. In 2018, the band performed together for the first time in 10 years at the Nano-Mugen Festival, a music event organized by the band Asian Kung-Fu Generation. The band played a set of 12 songs, including some of their classics and some new songs that they had written during their hiatus. The performance was met with overwhelming enthusiasm and joy from the fans and the band members themselves, who expressed their gratitude and happiness for being able to play together again.
Ellegarden is a band that has left a lasting mark on the Japanese music scene and beyond. Their music is timeless, original, and powerful, and their spirit is inspiring, genuine, and passionate. They are a band that deserves to be celebrated and remembered as one of the best. aa16f39245