Heavy metal band Seikima II are to make a comeback, six year’s after they broke up on New Year’s Eve 1999. The band’s name is a pun on the expression “end of the century” (seikimatsu), so the break up and it’s timing were almost unavoidable. But vocalist His Excellency Demon Kogure (photo, 42 – though his “official birthdate is 98038 B.C.) remains popular and still always wears his trademark elaborate stage makeup. He has released three solo albums and has a successful career as a variety show guest and sumo commentator. The band plan to launch a “black mass” national tour in the autumn, as this year marks their 20th anniversary (on earth, that is). Demon is to announce more details on his live radio show on June 6 (6/6). Seikima II were the first (and perhaps only) heavy metal band to appear on Kohaku, the New Year’s Eve song spectacle on ever-so-respectable NHK.
• Manga artist Aoyama Goshou (41), who created the popular “Meitantei Conan” character, has married voice actress Takayama Minami (41). The pair tied the knot on May 5, Takayama’s birthday, according to this week’s Josei Seven weekly magazine. Aoyama has been drawing the Conan character for over ten years since it first appeared in the weekly Shonen Sunday manga in 1994. He is one of the highest earning managa artists and has been the 5th-highest taxpayer in the literary world for the last two years, paying almost ¥140 million in income taxes last year. Takayama narrates the lead character’s voice in the weekly NTV anime version of Conan on Monday evenings.