Saber Tiger

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Saber Tiger
Origin Sapporo, Hokkaido, Japan
Genres Heavy metal[1]
Years active 1981–present
Labels Fasten Up Records
Tusk Force
Future Force (Far East Music Products)
Future Force (Fandango Records) (EU)
Tokuma Japan Communications
VAP
Edge Trax (current)
Associated acts Double Dealer, Concerto Moon, Keel, Anthem, Ezo, Loudness, Dead End
Website sabertiger.net
Members Akihito Kinoshita
Yasuharu Tanaka
Takenori Shimoyama
Yasuhiro Mizuno
Past members Former members

Saber Tiger (Japanese: サーベル・タイガー Hepburn: Saberu Taiga?), is a Japanese heavy metal band from Sapporo. It was founded in 1981 by guitarist and sole-constant member Akihito Kinoshita, who is responsible for producing, engineering and composing most of the band's work.[2] Saber Tiger has released nine studio albums, four compilation albums, a live album, two EPs and one single.[3] Their latest release Decisive, is seemingly becoming one of their best selling albums to date.[4]

Biography[edit]

Saber Tiger was formed in 1981 by guitarist Akihito Kinoshita. After releasing three albums through an independent record label, the band had what appeared to be a temporary break-up. However, Kinoshita worked around this and signed a major label contract with Tokuma Japan Communications. Saber Tiger's 1997 major debut album, Project One, thrust the band to the front of the flourishing Japanese metal scene. The album is essentially a solo album from Kinoshita, with famous guest musicians; vocalist Ron Keel (ex-Steeler and Keel), bassist Naoto Shibata (Anthem), and drummer Hirotsugu Honma (ex-Ezo and Loudness).[5]

Saber Tiger then went on to record and release three hit albums (as well as a few others) while officially reformed with Takenori Shimoyama on vocals, Tomohiro Sanpei on bass, and Yoshio Isoda on drums.

Working together they produced two more albums, Paragraph 3 and Brain Drain. In 2001, Saber Tiger made their first release under their new major label VAP, naming the album simply Saber Tiger. With VAP they continued on to release F.U.S.E., The History of the New World -凶獣伝説- and the single "Eternal Loop". Paragraph 3 and The History of the New World -凶獣伝説- were re-recorded compilations of the band's signature songs, with the new line-up and a heavier, more driven sound. They also released a live album named Live 2002 Nostalgia, on both CD and DVD.

In 2002, due to different musical ideas and goals, Shimoyama left the band to pursue his own ambitions in the heavy metal music scene. He formed the band Double Dealer, with Norifumi Shima. They signed a European-wide record contract with NTS/Limb Music, traveling through Europe on a tour with Symphony X.

After Shimoyama's departure, Saber Tiger continued to write and record new music, producing the album Indignation in 2005, with vocalist Katsuto Suzuki.

In 2010, Saber Tiger announced the reunion with former members Takenori Shimoyama (vocals), Yasuharu "Machine" Tanaka (guitar) and Tomohiro Sampei (bass), and with Yasuhiro Mizuno as their new drummer.[6] Eventually Takanobu Kimoto (ex-Double Dealer and Concerto Moon) replaced Sampei on bass. They began working on a new album at a studio in their hometown of Sapporo.[6] The album Decisive was released on August 3, 2011, and was followed by a tour. On May 26, 2013, they performed at the Pure Rock Japan Live 2013 at Club Citta, alongside NoGoD, Galneryus and Onmyo-Za.[7]

Members[edit]

Former members[edit]

Vocals:

  • Masahiro Imai
  • Takayuki Takizawa
  • Hiroyuki Yamaguchi
  • Yasuo Sasai
  • Youichi Koizumi
  • Toru Watanabe
  • Yoko Kubota
  • Ron Keel
  • Katsuto Suzuki
  • Sakebi

Guitar:

  • Hidetoshi Takeda

Bass:

  • Masahiro Imai
  • Fumiaki Sato
  • Takayuki Takizawa
  • Akira Mogi
  • Masahiko Hoshiba
  • Yuichi Hayase
  • Tomohiro Sampei
  • Takashi Yamazumi
  • Satoru Takeuchi
  • Naoto Shibata
  • Tomohiro Sanpei
  • Takanobu Kimoto

Drums:

  • Yoshio Isoda
  • Koji Imai
  • Shinichi Shirai
  • Masafumi Minato
  • Hiroyuki Sugano
  • Junichi Sasaki
  • Mitsuhiro Tsuji
  • Yuichi Sugiyama
  • Nobuyuki Kodera
  • Akihiro Iiyama
  • Hirotsugu Homma
  • Hideaki Yumida

Discography[edit]

Studio albums[edit]

  • Invasion (April 21, 1992)
  • Agitation (August 25, 1994)
  • Timystery (October 25, 1995)
  • Project One (February 5, 1997)
  • Brain Drain (February 21, 1998)
  • Saber Tiger (January 24, 2001), Oricon Albums Chart Peak Position: No. 81[8]
  • F.U.S.E. (March 13, 2002) No. 84[8]
  • Indignation (January 26, 2005) No. 236[8]
  • Decisive (August 3, 2011) No. 64[8]
  • Messiah Complex (October 10, 2012) No. 69[8]
  • Bystander Effect (November 23, 2015)

EPs[edit]

  • Rise (1986)
  • Crush & Dush (1987)

Live albums[edit]

  • Live 2002 Nostalgia (April 23, 2003)

Compilation albums[edit]

  • Paragraph (May 1, 1991)
  • Paragraph 2 (April 23, 1994)
  • Paragraph 3 - Museum (September 23, 1998)
  • The History of the New World (February 21, 2001)
  • Paragraph IV (December 21, 2011)
  • Saber Tiger, The Best Of (October 2, 2015)

Singles[edit]

  • "Eternal Loop" (November 21, 2001)
  • "Hate Crime" (August 8, 2012)

Demos[edit]

  • "Saber Tiger I" (1983)
  • "Saber Tiger II" (1984)
  • "Saber Tiger III" (1984)
  • "Saber Tiger IV: Maboroshi & Tusk" (1985)
  • "Saber Tiger V" (1987)
  • "Saber Tiger VII" (1988)
  • "Saber Tiger VI" (1989)
  • "Saber Tiger VIII" (1990)

DVDs[edit]

  • Agitation (1994)
  • Rare "Agitation" Crips Live at The Penny Lane 24, Sapporo, 2nd April, 1994 (1994)
  • Official Bootleg Live Video; Rare "Agitation Tour '94" Crips Vol.1 (1994)
  • Official Bootleg Live Video; Rare "Agitation Tour '94" Crips Vol.2 (1994)
  • Official Bootleg Live Video; Rare "Agitation Tour '94" Crips Vol.3 (1995)
  • Realive Recorded Live at The Penny Lane 24, Sapporo, 21st February, 1993 (1993)
  • Live 2002 Nostalgia (April 23, 2003)

References[edit]

External links[edit]