Heath

Hiroshi Morie (森江 博 Morie Hiroshi?, born January 22, 1968 in Amagasaki, Japan), known exclusively by his stage name Heath, is a Japanese musician, singer and songwriter. He is best known as bass player of the heavy metal band X Japan. He joined the group in 1992, replacing Taiji Sawada on bass, and stayed with them until their dissolution in 1997 and reunited with the band from 2007 onward.

After the breakup he focused on his solo career, until 2000 when he founded Dope HEADz with fellow X Japan guitarist Pata and former Spread Beaver percussionist/programmer I.N.A.. The group ceased activity after its second album in 2002.

Career

1986–2006: Early bands, X Japan, solo career and other work

Heath’s first known band was the heavy metal group Paranoia which he joined in 1986 as bassist, their vocalist Nov would go on to the popular thrash metal band Aion. They released one album in 1987 before splitting up, and in 1988 he joined Sweet Beet as vocalist for a year. In 1991 he played at Extasy Records’ Extasy Summit ’91 with a band called Majestic Isabelle. In April 1992 he joined Sweet Death, whom he had previously played with in 1990. Sweet Death was a band produced by Extasy Records, that same year the band’s new leader Kiyoshi (who years later would join Spread Beaver), decided to change their name to Media Youth. Heath would not stay with them long, because in May hide, whom he had gotten to know through Extasy, invited him to join X Japan.

In June he left Media Youth and on August 24, 1992, at a press conference in New York at Rockefeller Center, it was announced that he had joined X.[1] His first concert with them was the October 1992 Extasy Summit, and the following year they released Art of Life, which topped the Oricon chart.However, that year the members of X Japan took a break to start solo projects. Dahlia, which would become the band’s last album, was released on November 4, 1996 and once again, it reached the number one spot.[2] In September 1997, it was announced that X Japan would disband, they performed their farewell show, aptly titled The Last Live, at the Tokyo Dome on December 31, 1997.

In 1995, Heath released his first solo album, Heath and his second, Gang Age Cubist, in 1998. For the 1999 hide tribute album, Tribute Spirits, Heath teamed up with X Japan guitarist Pata and former Spread Beaver percussionist/programmer I.N.A. to cover the song “Celebration”. He would reunite with them again in 2000 when they formed Dope HEADz, adding vocalist Jo:Ya. They released two singles and an album, when in 2002 they recruited new singer Shame and released Planet of Dope. Soon after its release they would cease activity.

On December 29, 2003 he announced a new project called Rats, but after the release of their re-recording of Heath’s “Traitor”, the project was ended on August 29, 2004. That same year he formed a band called Lynx, with Der Zibet vocalist Issay. They haven’t had any releases and it is unknown if they are still active. In 2005 Heath restarted his solo activities after a seven-year hiatus.

2007–present: X Japan reunion

According to a report by the newspaper Sponichi, X Japan vocalist Toshi visited drummer Yoshiki in Los Angeles in November 2006 to work on a song as a tribute to hide. In March 2007, Toshi announced on his website that he and Yoshiki had recently resumed working together, stating that a “new project” would commence soon. Rumors of a X Japan reunion subsequently began, and in June Yoshiki was reported as having expressed interest in a tour and that he was in talks with Heath and Pata regarding their participation.[4] On October 22, 2007, X Japan announced their reunion and released the Saw IV theme song, “I.V.”. In 2010, they went on their first North American tour from September 25 to October 10.[7] Their first world tour began with four gigs in Europe from June 28 to July 4, 2011 and was resumed from September to October with five shows in South America and five in Asia.

In response to the 2011 Tōhoku earthquake and tsunami that occurred in Japan on March 11, Heath supported X Japan vocalist Toshi in eight concerts throughout western Japan. All of the shows were acoustic in support of nationwide power conservation efforts and also featured Luna Sea’s Shinya and the Orchestra Ensemble Kanazawa. All proceeds were donated to the Japanese Red Cross to aid the victims.

Equipment

Heath uses Fernandes bass guitars; currently using his signature model FJB-115H.[He also had a signature model with Burny, produced by Fernandes, the DB-85H. When he first joined X Japan he used a Burny WB-X and then a Burny EB-X from 1993 until getting a signature model.

Discography

Solo
  • Heath (February 22, 1995)
  • “Meikyuu no Lovers” (迷宮のラヴァーズ?, October 7, 1996), Oricon Peak Position: #10[
Second ending theme for the Detective Conan anime.
  • “Traitor” (February 19, 1997) #35
Theme song for the TV series Toro Asia and the Sega Saturn video game Phantasm.
  • “Crack Yourself” (April 22, 1998) #76
  • Gang Age Cubist (June 10, 1998) #43
  • “New Skin” (2005, CD and DVD)
  • “Come to Daddy” (2005, CD and DVD)
  • “The Live” (2005, CD and DVD)
  • “Solid” (August 25, 2006)
  • Desert Rain (July 16, 2006)
  • “Sweet Blood” (November, 2009, distributed at fan club event “Sweet Vibration”)
VHS/DVD
  • Heath (February 22, 1995, sold with 1st solo album)
  • Heath of All Films 1995.02.22 ~ 1997.12.31 (December 27, 1998)
Other media (Digital photo & video)
  • 「Solid」 (January 10, 2005, CD-ROM)
  • Six Nine Cell (2005, CD-ROM)
  • Innosent World (January 1, 2007, CD-ROM)
Books
  • Heath (March 30, 1993, music score)
With Paranoia
  • Come From Behind (1987)
With Dope HEADz
  • “Glow” (February 21, 2001) #35
  • “True Lies” (April 25, 2001) #35
  • Primitive Impulse (June 6, 2001) #20
  • Planet of the Dope (July 24, 2002) #59
With Rats
  • “Traitor” (2004, comes with live documentary DVD, Dirty High)
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