Hailing from Japan, Loudness is a progressive metal band that was formed in 1981 by guitarist Akira Takasaki and drummer Munetaka Higuchi. Starting with its debut album, 1981's The Birthday Eve, the band began collecting a national following with its hard rock and glam-inspired brand of metal. After landing a deal with Atco Records in 1985 and becoming the first Japanese heavy metal act signed to a major US label, the group dropped its sixth studio album, Thunder in the East, to widespread acclaim. Despite undergoing numerous changes in its lineup, the band maintained its momentum during the 1990s and eventually reunited its original line-up in 2000. Loudness continues to release and record new material, including 2012.