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Japan's best-known black metal band Sigh has, over the years, also progressed into one of the genre's most experimental and simply unusual bands regardless of whereabouts. Led by bassist/vocalist/keyboardist Mirai Kawashima, the trio formed in 1989, at which point the lineup was rounded out by Satoshi Fujinami on guitar and Kazuki on drums. They took their original inspirations from the raw '80s thrash metal of bands such as Venom, Celtic Frost, and Kreator, meanwhile mixing in horror movie soundtrack atmospheres and keyboards/synthesizer arrangements (they were one of the first so-called black metal bands to heavily use keyboards). After a couple of demos, they recorded their first EP, Requiem for the Fools, in 1992 for the Wild Rags label, with Satoshi doubling on guitar and bass (Kazuki had left by this point). This effort drew the attention of infamous Mayhem guitarist/Norwegian black metal scene figurehead Euronymous, who signed them to his Deathlike Silence Productions imprint for their debut full-length. Entitled Scorn Defeat, this album came out in 1993 after Euronymous' death and was the first Sigh recording to include guitarist Shinichi Ishikawa, with Satoshi moving strictly to drums and percussion. With their lineup finally solidified, the trio signed to England's Cacophonous Records, where they released their next three full-lengths: Infidel Art (1995), Hail Horror Hail (1997), and Scenario IV: Dread Dreams (1999); a mini-CD, Ghastly Funeral Theatre, also came out on Cacophonous in 1997. Over the course of these albums, Sigh steadily incorporated more diverse elements into their sound, including pianos, female choirs, classically inspired orchestrations (though not the bombastic, Wagner-ian sort favored by many European bands), non-horror movie soundtrack touches, and unexpected mood/style changes that reveal their acknowledged interest in composers John Zorn and Frank Zappa. (Hail Horror Hail even included a defiant warning, apparently meant for more traditionally minded metal listeners, stating that "every sound on [the] album is deliberate, and if you find that some parts of the album are strange, it isn't because the music in itself is strange, but because your conscious self is ill-equipped to comprehend the sounds produced on this recording.") After Scenario IV…, Sigh left the Cacophonous label for Century Media, which released the band's fifth full-length, Imaginary Sonicscape, in the summer of 2001. ~ William York
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Top Songs by

  1.   Song
  2.   Opening Theme: Lucid Nightmare
  3.   Death with Dishonor
  4.   Me-Devil
  5.   Born Condemend Criminal
  6.   Somniphobia
  7.   Amongst the Phantoms of Abandoned Tumbrils
  8.   Bring Back the Dead
  9.   Messiahplan
  10.   Dreamsphere (Return to the Chaos)
  11.   Inked in Blood
  12.   Dies Irae/The Master Malice
  13.   Introitus/Kyrie
  14.   Die Hard
  15.   Salvation in Flame/Confutatis
  16.   Impromptu (Allegro Maestoso)
  17.   Diabolic Suicide
  18.   Vanitas
  19.   Overture/Rex Tremendae/I Saw the World's End
  20.   The Tombfiller
  21.   Amnesia
  22.   Divine Graveyard
  23.   Gavotte Grim
  24.   Countess Bathory
  25.   The Casketburner
  26.   The Molesters of My Soul
  27.   The Transfiguration Fear
  28.   Purgatorium
  29.   Scenes from Hell
  30.   Black Metal
  31.   Suicidogenic
  32.   Voices
  33.   -
  34.   The Tranquilizer Song
  35.   Confession to Be Buried
  36.   The Enlightenment Day
  37.   In a Drowse
  38.   Waltz Dread Dreams
  39.   Imprisoned
  40.   In the Mind of a Lunatic
  41.   Kaedit Nos Pestis
  42.   Jazzy Outtake 2
  43.   Witching Hour
  44.   L'excommunication a Minuit
  45.   Scarlet Dream
  46.   Dwellers in Dream
  47.   Fall to the Thrall
  48.   Ecstatic Transformation
  49.   The Memories as a Sinner
  50.   The Red Funeral
  51.   Izuna
  52.   Nietzschean Conspiracy
  53.   A Messenger From Tomorrow
  54.   Out of the Grave
  55.   Black Curse
  56.   Graveward
  57.   The Summer Funeral
  58.   Hangman's Hymn/In Paradisum/Das Ende
  59.   Slaughtergarden Suite, Pts. 1-5: at Dawn/The Dead Are Born/Destiny Divi
  60.   Severed Ways
  61.   The Forlorn
  62.   In Devil's Arms
  63.   Pale Monument
  64.   Prelude to the Oracle
  65.   Infernal Cries
  66.   The Trial by the Dead
  67.   Equale
  68.   Desolation
  69.   Iconoclasm in the 4th Desert
  70.   Corpsecry - Angelfall
  71.   Far Beneath the In-Between
  72.   A Sunset Song
  73.   Jazzy Outtake 1
  74.   The Soul Grave
  75.   The Zombie Terror
  76.   Requiem- Nostalgia
  77.   L'art De Mourir
  78.   Musica in Tempora Belli
  79.   Midnight Sun
  80.   Teacher's Pet
  81.   Silver Universe
  82.   Mayhem With Mercy
  83.   The Last Elegy
  84.   Beyond Centuries
  85.   Slaughtergarden Suite: I. At Dawn, II. The Dead Are Born, III. Destiny
  86.   Ending Theme: Continuum

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