Billy & The Sluts
Billy & The Sluts, also known as BATS, was one of the few early visual acts that topped the Indies Oricon Charts but never made it major despite their popularity. The group has helped various visual bands since the early 90's, bands ranging from the famous L'arc en Ciel to the oshare kei band Ass'n'Arrows. In 2009, BATS release their first album since 1995.
BATS was formed during February 1989 in Kobe. The founding member of the band is Sammy, who is also the main focus point of the group. Even though the name of the band is Billy & The Sluts, there have never been a member named Billy in the group. The band managed to get signed to Free-Will Records and released their first album before the end of 1989.
For the next year, the band would end up focusing most of their time on touring. Not long into 1990, Ayanokoji left the band and was replaced by Koichi. For their anniversary in 1991, Billy & The Sluts released their second album. This album topped the Indies Oricon Charts during its first week. During 1991, Sammy befriended Tetsu, who would soon be a member of L'arc en Ciel, and helped Tetsu find a guitarist for his band. This wouldn't be the last time Sammy would help out other bands and musicians in the visual scene.
When 1992 rolled around, BATS had a major line-up change from being a quintet to being a quartet. Rumie, Yu-Ki, and Koichi all left the band and were replaced with Hikari and Karsuke. Like in 1990, the group mostly focused on touring instead of releasing anything new. However, 1993 did see the release of their third album and only single. BATS soon went back to their heavy touring schedule.
In 1994, Billy & The Sluts did many "VS" concerts with visual bands that would be popular in the late 90's such as Malice Mizer and Siam Shade. In 1995, the remaining members left the band and Rouge (formerly of Harlem Q) joined the band. The sound of the band was more funk than rock and they released two albums. Sammy then announced he was going solo in 1996 but disappeared from the music scene in 1999. In 2001, the 1992 - 1994 era of BATS reunited at a Jolly Pickles sponsored concert. Since then, the band still performs and had one line-up change. On February 29, 2009; Billy & The Sluts released a new album called "20th Anniversary".
Sammy (Vocals) - Original Member
Hikari (Guitar) - Originally joined in 1992. Left in 1995. Rejoined in 2001.
BellTommy (Bass) - Joined in 2007
Hiro (Drums) - Joined in 2007
Mizuki (Guitar) - Left in 1989
Ayanokoji aka Hidemaro (Drums) - Left in 1990
Rumie (Guitar) - Left in 1992
Yu-Ki (Guitar) - Left in 1992
Koichi (Drums) - Left in 1992
Abekyo (Bass) - Original member. Left in 1995. Rejoined in 2001. Left in 2007.
Karsuke (Drums) - Joined in 1992. Left in 1995. Rejoined in 2001. Left in 2007.