Heroes to a thousand Japanese melocore bands, SoCal veterans
Bad Religion return to Japan for a much-anticipated tour that
will see them playing two dates in the Tokyo area.
With a new album, The Process of Belief, Bad Religion are
still at the vanguard of a movement that they helped launch
back in the early '80s. Along with groups like Black
Flag, Rancid and Offspring, Bad Religion gave vent to the
anger felt by a generation of white suburban kids at a time
of deep economic and social discontent.
Formed in 1980 in Los Angeles by guitarist Brett Gurewitz
and singer-songwriter Greg Graffin, Bad Religion issued their
first self-titled EP in 1982 on Epitaph, the label launched
by Gurewitz to release the band's records. Their debut
album Into The Unknown followed in 1983, after which Gurewitz
dropped out of the band to recover from substance abuse problems.
Reforming in 1987, Bad Religion issued Suffer, reestablishing
the group in the US indie-rock scene. No Control in 1989 and
Against The Grain in 1990 cemented their reputation and street
By the time of their 1993 album, Recipe For Hate, Nirvana's
grunge revolution had brought the underground punk scene to
the attention of the major labels, leading to the signing
of Bad Religion with Atlantic for 1994's Stranger Than
While the move lost them some diehard indie-rock fanatics,
it also brought Bad Religion to a wider audience and a new
generation of listeners. Meanwhile, Gurewitz's label
Epitaph had scored big with Smash, The Offspring's
surprise hit, which lead to his departure from the band to
focus on management. The Grace followed in 1996 with No Substance
appearing in 1998.
Under the direction of Todd Rundgren, the recording for 2000's
The New America took place on the island of Kauai in Hawaii,
and saw Graffin reunite with Gurewitz to pen the song "Believe
"To me the song does sound like a long-lost friend,"
said Graffin at the time. "It's just silly to
deny that there is something special between us. We are connected
and always will be."
This February's The Process of Belief saw the band
resign with Epitaph, while a just released live album, Japan
Tour, documents their last tour here two years ago.
Bad Religion play Akasaka Blitz
On October 6-7. See listings for details.