The successful Japanese pop/rock band Remioromen were formed by former classmates Fujimaki Ryota (vocals/guitar), Maeda Keisuke (bass), and Jinguji Osamu (drums) in late 2000. The lineup gelled right from the start, and so the band, which was christened with a nonsense name, started playing live, moving from its hometown in Yamanashi to Tokyo and then once more back and forth over course of the next three years. Remioromen had their debut release in 2003, when the EP Festa came out, but the wait was worth it, because Festa topped the indie charts, ensuring that the band's subsequent singles, "Ameagari" and "Denwa" (both 2003), got extensive radio promotion. The debut LP Asagao followed in 2003 as well, allowing Remioromen to claim a slot in Count Down Japan, a popular end-of-the-year TV show, on which they've since become a regular feature.
The year 2004 was spent in heavy touring and saw the release of the single "Sangatsu Kokonoka," which helped Remioromen to stage their big breakthrough in 2005, when the choral version of this song and the new track "Konayuki" were picked for theme songs of the TV drama 1 Rittoru no Namida (1 Litre of Tears). Prior to this in 2005, Remioromen also released their second album, Ether, and played the Budokan venue, but 1 Rittoru no Namida was the turning point: "Konayuki" spent 46 weeks on the charts, mostly in 2006, and while it didn't reach number one, it became the second best-selling single of 2006, and the video for the song took a prize at MTV Video Music Awards Japan. The band's third album, Horizon (2006), was Remioromen's first to top the Oricon charts, and the supporting tour featured a show at the Yamanashi airport in front of 30,000 people, which was recorded and released as the live album Flash and Gleam (2006). Remioromen continued touring in 2007 and also released three singles that year. The group's fourth full-length, Kazenokuroma, came out in October 2008. ~ Alexey Eremenko