The Coathangers // Coward // Trash Fire
1987 – Formed in Tokyo, Japan with the line-up of Seiji, Billy, and a drummer.
1991 – Toru joins the line-up after the departure of their first drummer. Around this time, the band frequently plays the “Back From The Grave” shows in Tokyo, which was put on by the infamous DJ Daddy-O-Nov. Also one of the band’s song is included on the compilation released by Tokuma Japan Records. Other bands on this compilation was The 188.8.131.52’s.
1992 – The band’s song was featured in another complation “TVVA” released by Less Than TV Records.
1993 – The band heads out on their first American tour, which included a show at the Garage Shock Festival put on by Estrus Records.
1994 – Their first album “Wolf Rock” is released from Goner Records, ran by members of the Oblivians. In June, their second album “Run Wolf Run” is released from Less Than TV Records. Guitar Wolf graces the cover of Maximum Rock ‘N Roll Magazine.
1996 – Their third album “Missile Me” is released. This album was released by Matador Records in the U.S. and Europe.
1997 – 34 date American Tour which included dates in Austin, Texas for the SXSW festival on the Matador Records stage. This show was reviewed and featured in the Rolling Stone Magazine. In April, the band shared a bill with Jon Spencer Blues Explosion in London and Germany. After returning to Japan, Guitar Wolf signs with Ki/oon Sony Records after a major label bidding war that ensued. Soon after, their first major label album “Planet Of The Wolves” is released. After the release, the Invader Tour followed. In October of this year, the band supported the Cramps on a 31 date American Tour.
1998 – The year is kicked off with a short tour in Japan with the Oblivions. On April 1st, “Kaminari One” is released as a maximum single. The band heads out on a world tour titled “Kaminari Tour” 12 dates in Japan and 16 dates in Europe were all sold-out. In June, they supported the Cramps in Japan. With no time to spare, they head out on a 24 date U.S. tour. In August, they grace the stage of Japan’s Fuji Rock Festival and in September, a tour with The Woggles in Japan, and a performance on National Japanese TV called “Live Beat” closed out the bands busy summer touring schedule. In November, the single “Can-Nana Fever” is released. And this year was closed out with a performance at the “Ebisu-Dynami!” sharing a bill with Thee Michelle Gun Elephant, which was of course sold out.
1999 – Guitar Wolf releases their second major release “Jet Generation”. Supporting the album, the band heads out on a 25 date “Bakuon Tour”, followed by a short tour in May with the Makers, from Seattle. To fulfill their goal of playing on all continents in the world, the band heads down under for a New Zealand and Australia tour. In the summer, the band played major festivals in Japan, including “Out Of Hell”, “Rushball ’99”, “Ongaku to Higetachi ’99”, and “Rising Sun Rock Festival”. In September, the band plays their first show at the renowned Hibiya Yagai Ongakudou stage in the middle of Tokyo’s business district. This year ended with a 28 date U.S. tour, starting off in New York City for the Matador Records 10 Year Anniversary show.
2000 – Single “God, Speed, You” is released, followed by their third album for Sony called “Rock ‘N Roll Etiquette”. The two releases were followed by the “Rock “N Roll Etiquette Tour” which covered 38 cities all over Japan. The rest of the year saw the band playing festivals such as “Tokyo Big Rumble”, “Rock Monster Festival”, “London Night Special”, “Rushball”, “Rock “N Roll Summit” and closed the year off with an appearance at the London Nite 10th Anniversary Show.
2001 – This year started off with appearing on the highly popular national TV show “Hey Hey Hey”. The band also covered “I Love You, OK” by Yazawa Eikichi for his tribute album and the song was also released as a single in April. In July, the band was scheduled to play the “Contact 2001 Korea-Japan Live Project”, but was forced to cancel due to political reasons. Again, in the summer, the band played in Japanese festivals including “Out Of Hell Vol. 2″, “Hot Rocks 01″, “Rock In Japan Festival 2001″, “Rising Sun Rock Festival 2001″, “Black List 010″, “Rock Japanese”, and “Go-Go Nite”. In November, the band traveled to Brazil and the U.S. for 5 shows.
2002 – In January, the band toured with The Zodiac Killers from San Francisco. On March 6th, the band released their fourth album for Sony titled “UFO Romantics” followed by the 36 date “Fireball Tour 2002″. In June, they traveled to Okinawa for the first time for two shows. At the annual “Rock In Japan Festival 2002″, the band played in front of a crowd of 35,000. In November, “UFO Romantics” was released in France with a sold-out short promotion tour, which included dates in France, Belgium, Holland, Spain, and Swiss, that followed. After returning to Japan, the band toured with their friends from Brazil, the Autoramas and releasing a live DVD titled “Red Idol”.
2003 – “UFO Romantics” is released in the U.S. by Narnack Records with an accompanying tour of 8 shows in 6 cities. Upon returning to Japan, the band played a secret show, opening for the band D4 for their promotional tour. This year the band played two summer festivals. Even though Guitar Wolf had to play the first slot opening the “Fuji Rock Festival ’03” in the rain, the band was greeted by a huge crowd on the White Stage. This year, Seiji chose and compiled the Japanese “Best of” album by Joan Jett, who is his favorite artist. Also, the band opened for Joan Jett on her Japan tour. In November, the band toured Argentina, Brazil, and the U.S. Even though this was their first show in Argentina, the band was greeted by 800 fans. The dates in Brazil was also sold-out. While they were there, they signed with Monstro Disco and released “UFO Romantics”. The band played in Mitsui Greenland on New Years Eve to close out the ever busy and successful year.
2004 – Guitar Wolf also curated a show called “Tokyo Jet Night” for the first time. The bands on the bill were Ging Nang Boyz, Jet Boys, and Wakusei. In June, a Guitar Wolf Tribute album “I Love Guitar Wolf Very Much” is released. The following month, the band released “Loverock”, the fifth release from Sony. In September the band toured Japan for the album.
2005 – Started the year off with the “Loverock Tour – Special Version” in January. In February, they played the “Sonic Mania Festival” in Tokyo and Osaka, filling in for Kings of Leon who canceled their appearance. In March, the band set off on a month long U.S. tour. Upon returning, on March 31st, Basswolf sadly past away from sudden heart failure. In July, the band released their first best of album titled “Golden Black” and DVD titled “Live At Sekai”. At the annual “Rock ‘N Roll Summit”, Seiji and Toru made an appearance. In September, new bassist UG (being only 19 years old at the time) joins the band and the band resumes touring. In December the band headed down to New Zealand and Australia and ended the year with a New Years Eve show in Melbourne.
2006 – After a short tour in January, the band enters the studio to record an new album featuring new member UG on bass. In April, the band plays for the first time in Korea. In May, “Ultra Cross Vol. 1″, a split single with Lightning Bolt is released. On June 9th, Guitar Wolf plays a double headlining show with Dohatsuten called “Tokyo Jet Night Vs. Tokyo Blossom”. In July and August, the band makes the festival rounds, playing “Udo Music Fes”, “Natsu No Mamono”, “Fuji Rock Festival”, “Rising Sun Rock Festival”, and “Rock ‘N Roll Summit”. On August 9th, the second installation of the split single “Ultra Cross Vol. 2″ with Struggle For Pride is released. After another tour of New Zealand and Australia, the “Ultra Cross Vol. 3″ is released on December 27th. This time the split is with DJ Baku.
2007 – The first album featuring new bassist UG titled “Dead Rock” is released. This album was followed by a 32 city “Andromeda Tour”. In September, the band released a self-covered album “Kasei Twist”. This celebrated the 20th anniversary of the band and 10 anniversary of being with Sony. As an album release tour, the band toured Tokyo, Nagoya, and Osaka under the “Jet Night” series of shows. After their performance in Tokyo, the band goes on a hiatus, due to Seiji’s body overhaul (surgery).
2009 – On April 4th, 558 days since their last show, Guitar Wolf returns to the stage at Hibiya Yagai Ongakudou. After this show, they start playing few shows and festivals. And in December, the mini-album “Jet Satisfaction” is released.
2010 – After wrapping up a successful tour which started the previous December and ending at Ebisu Liquid Room on 1/24/2010. The band took a 6 month break from live shows for Seiji’s operation. After Seiji’s full recovery, Guitar Wolf played summer festivals in Japan and recorded their new album in only12 days. After the album was finished, the band returned to the U.S. for a tour in since 2005 and also playing the Matador Records Anniversary Festival.
2011 – The 10th original album “SPACEBATTLESHIPLOVE “ release party was held in January in Tokyo, which was “admission-free live for teenagers”. The album was released on Nov.24, 2010, on Ki/oon Records in Japan.
“Hoochie Coochie Space Men Tour “ in March and April supported the release (Sendai show was canceled due to Great East Japan Earthquake.) , followed by the world tour: 24 shows in the US, 19 shows in EU&UK, and 13 shows in Australia& NZ.
In December, GUITAR WOLF recorded a new song “Female Machinegun” (words by Seiji, music by Jon Spencer) for a Japanese girl-duo PUFFY.
2012 – The 25th anniversary of the band and the 15th anniversary of the band’s debut.
To celebrate, GUITAR WOLF visited Korea for the third time and dashed to “Alien Action Tour 2012” in US/Canada (27shows) with Transistors from NZ, and in EU/UK (24 shows).
In Japan, GUITAR WOLF appeared at Yokohama NISSAN Stadium as a support act for Eikichi Yazawa for his 40th Anniversary concert, also showed up in the event at Budokan for the first time in the band’s history later in December. Besides those arena appearances, the band played the double bills with THE JON SPENCER BLUES EXPLOSION for their Japan tour, and with Denki Groove at Ki/oon 20thAnniversary.
The band’s infamous “Tokyo Jet Night” was organized on Dec.25 in Tokyo.
2013 – The 11th full album “BEAST VIBRATOR” was released on March 6 on Ki/oon Records in Japan, followed by “Tour Magma 2013” which covered 16 cities nationwide in Japan.
Okami Records dropped the album in EU&UK on May 31. The worldwide tour “ Tour Magma 2013” will extend the legs to EU, the North American and Australia/NZ.
but still unique,” says Rusty. “Because everyone is into so many different types of music, you get a hodgepodge kind of sound. However different the songs we feel its still a cohesive album, as far as every song sounding distinctly like a Coathanger’s song.”