LOUDNESS Taps DED CHAPLIN Drummer For Japanese Dates

Kozo Suganuma, drummer for one of the most popular fusion bands in Japan, FRAGILE and a former member of DED CHAPLIN (featuring LOUDNESS singer Minoru Niihara), has been tapped to fill in for LOUDNESS drummer Munetaka Higuchi for the latter group's previously announced Japanese dates.

Higuchi was hospitalized on April 7 and is currently undergoing treatment for liver cancer.

Commented Kozo: "I think everyone already knows about these unfortunate news. Mr. Munetaka Higuchi from LOUDNESS has been diagnosed with cancer and he is fighting with this illness. I feel very sad as a fellow drummer and as a friend.

"Recently, I received a call from Minoru Niihara (DED CHAPLIN's vocalist and my former bandmate), who told me about the sad news. After I heard the news, I decided to take over his work. I cancelled most of my previous commitments.

"It is not easy to take over such a great band that creates Japanese metal music history. Also, I haven't had enough time to do rehearsals. However, I wanted to do something for my friend. It was a very difficult decision for me. I hope all of the LOUDNESS fans understand the situation."

Minoru Niihara's official statement regarding Higuchi's battle with cancer reads as follows:

"I have an important announcement to make to all our fans. On April 7th, our drummer, Munetaka Higuchi was hopitalized for a check-up on his liver and after all the tests, he was diagnosed with Hepatocellular Carcinoma.

"In order to receive treatment and fight this disease, he will be on sabbatical for the time being. It was his strong desire to come out and tell all of you about his illness since he appreciates your love and support and believes he will prevail and come back to play again. We appreciate your understanding and support through this hard time.

"As for our scheduled live performances in Tokyo, Nagoya, and Osaka, after much consideration, we have decided to replace Munetaka and carry them out as scheduled.

"We apologize for any inconvenience and disappointment this would cause and again appreciate your understanding and cooperation."

LOUDNESS' latest album, "Metal Mad", was released in Japan on February 20 through Tokuma Communications. Release dates for other territories have not yet been announced.

Upcoming LOUDNESS shows:

April 22 - Tokyo (Shibuya) - Club Quattro
April 25 - Nagoya - Club Quattro
April 26 - Osaka - Club Quattro

Kozo Suganuma drum clinic in Singapore, August 2007:

(Thanks: Robin)


Posted in: News


To comment on a BLABBERMOUTH.NET story or review, you must be logged in to an active personal account on Facebook. Once you're logged in, you will be able to comment. User comments or postings do not reflect the viewpoint of BLABBERMOUTH.NET and BLABBERMOUTH.NET does not endorse, or guarantee the accuracy of, any user comment. To report spam or any abusive, obscene, defamatory, racist, homophobic or threatening comments, or anything that may violate any applicable laws, use the "Report to Facebook" and "Mark as spam" links that appear next to the comments themselves. To do so, click the downward arrow on the top-right corner of the Facebook comment (the arrow is invisible until you roll over it) and select the appropriate action. You can also send an e-mail to blabbermouthinbox(@)gmail.com with pertinent details. BLABBERMOUTH.NET reserves the right to "hide" comments that may be considered offensive, illegal or inappropriate and to "ban" users that violate the site's Terms Of Service. Hidden comments will still appear to the user and to the user's Facebook friends. If a new comment is published from a "banned" user or contains a blacklisted word, this comment will automatically have limited visibility (the "banned" user's comments will only be visible to the user and the user's Facebook friends).