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The Billiant Green
By Ridwan Khan
In the diva soaked world of Japanese pop music it's hard to find good guitar based music. However, one band that is known for their skill with guitars and American style music is The Brilliant Green. The Brilliant Green came together in 1995 after bassist Okuda Shunsaku and guitarist Matsui Ryou, high school classmates, met vocalist Kawase Tomoko on a gig in Kyoto. After making demo tapes and doing performances, BuriGuri, as they came to be known by their fans, was signed by Sony Music of Japan. They released their first single, "Bye Bye Mr. Mug" that same year. The song became very popular in the Kansai region of Japan.
In 1998 The Brilliant Green released "There Will Be Love There." The song helped popularize the band throughout Japan. BuriGuri also sang several songs for televisions programs, which further put them in the public eye. These include "Tsumetai Hana" (for CountDown TV), "There Will Be Love There" (for the program Love Again), "Sono Speed de" and "Nagai Tameiki no Youni" (for Pop Jam). For the "200 Active Hokkaido" ad campaign they sang "Hello Another Way" and for the program "Manatsu no Merry Christmas" The Brilliant Green sang "Angel Song." In 2002 BuriGuri sang "Forever To Me ~ Owari Naki Kanashimi" for the program Nemurenu Yoru no Daite.
Tomoko (or Tommy, as she's known to her fans), also began a solo career in 2001. She released her first single under the moniker "Tommy February 6" (the six is silent) on July 25, 2001. Moving away from the guitar rock of The Brilliant Green, Tommy veered into another direction completely 80s style synth pop. In 2001 she performed "Everyday at the Bus Stop" for Countdown TV and she sang "Tommy Feburatte" and "Makaron" for the anime Piroppo (the anime based on the Sony Aibo robots). This year, Tommy did "Bloomin!" for a Pienu cosmetics commercial (the song also ranked well on Space Shower TV's Top 20) and "Can't Take My Eyes Off You" for a Daihatsu Move commercial.
On the talk show HEY HEY HEY Tommy has said she planned on only releasing only one song outside of The Brilliant Green, but the popularity of her music convinced to keep releasing single until her birthday, February 6th.
The band released several new songs on April 24, 2002 of this year; as mentioned before "Forever to Me" severed as a theme for a television show. Released on the same single were "I'm A Player in T.V. Games" and "Alone Alone."
For those wanting a different sound from the pop stylings most associated with J-Pop, The Brilliant Green is an excellent alternative. Several of the band's songs have both Japanese and English versions, while other songs mix Japanese and English. Even Tommy's 80s pop is different from what American listeners are used to (well, in the last decade or so, anyway).
The band's Japanese language Offical Sony page can be accessed here while Tommy February 6's site can be found here.
Thanks to Rieko Nakamoto and the brilliant green ~ english page for information.