KAMIJO // Behind the Mask (2/3): Sang

Bonjour! In order to prepare you for KAMIJO’s upcoming European tour “The Anthem” we’ve already shared part one of our “Behind the Mask”-series, and now it’s time for part two.
In part one we covered the “Symphony of The Vampire” EP, in which KAMIJO tells us the first part of the story of Louis XVII, covering the French Revolution, the death of Louis XVI and Marie Antoinette, his encounter with the Count of Saint-Germain, and his friendship with Ludwig von Beethoven.

The story concluded with Louis taking out his own heart in the Cathedral of Saint-Denis, in order to replace the fake heart from the boy that died in the tower. This heart was identified as genuine in 2004 through a positive DNA test, which means Louis now continues to exist without a heart through the power of a beautiful melody- as he learned from his friend Ludwig von Beethoven.

Today we’ll be covering the events that take place on the album “Sang”.
I hope you’re ready, because we have a lot to talk about this time.

Let’s go!


“He once saved my life, but lied to me.”

Unlike “Symphony of The Vampire”, “Sang” doesn’t have a historical introduction, or a large video version accompanying it. There are music videos for the “Nosferatu”, “mademoiselle” and “カストラート” (Castrato) tracks (and yes, I’m aware there is a new re-recorded version of “Vampire Rock Star” that was released in 2021, but that version will be ignored in this review as it is not part of the original release), but they are not presented in a movie-style like the seven movements of “Symphony of The Vampire”.

Much like the previous part, this series is heavily focused on the story KAMIJO tells us through his works, and far less on the music accompanying it. Which is why I will not mention the music or composition aspects very often – you know by now what style of music you can expect from KAMIJO, right? “Sang” is no exception in that regard. 😉

The story of “Sang” starts in 2004, the same year as the heart of Louis XVII was identified as genuine. The world is dealing with a global energy shortage.
Louis hears the news that they have succeeded in generating electricity using human blood. He heads to Japan, where the researchers are working, and gives his “special blood” to the dead there. This creates a new energy, which was given the name Emigre. This energy lets the dead sleep, and allows Louis to begin creating an ideal world.

The album opens with a short instrumental piece named “Dead Set World”, which after 50 seconds seamlessly changes into the second track, “Theme of Sang”. The lyrics for this song are sung in English, telling the progress of Louis up until that point. He has become a classy gentleman who worked hard to make plans for his own “dead set world”, even though it’s not right for the living. “You will make them all believe it’s based on love, not based on lust. Excellent!”
Even though it is not directly mentioned in the lyrics, the events in this track seem to be taking place right after Louis created the new energy “Emigre”.

Nosferatu”, while not mentioned directly, describes the process of Louis giving his special blood to the dead to create this new energy. “I want to look only at true value, not good or bad.” Louis aims to create an ideal world based on love, not on lust – which the lyrics from “Theme of Sang” already told us a little earlier. However, is using the dead for the benefit of the living really the way to do so? “Ethics and Morals, even God is no match for love.”


KAMIJO // Nosferatu (MV)


However, since Louis was supposed to have died in the French Revolution 200 years ago, his true identity could not be revealed. This poses to be quite the problem, so much that the system could not be spread as much as Louis had hoped.

The Count of Saint-Germain, who is said to have an immortal body and is already considered Europe biggest mystery, takes center stage in Louis’ place. “Bloodcast -Interlude-” serves as an instrumental intro similar to a TV program, giving “Vampire Rock Star” (arguably one of KAMIJO’s most popular live songs, don’t you think? I actually remember him playing this song not once, but twice during his live show in Amsterdam during the “Sang” tour in 2018!) the perfect starting point. You can already sort of see the relation through the sentence “look at the truth on TV”, but the lyrics aren’t set up like a press conference in the slightest, yet the words “oh, let me tell you everything I know” and “no, I will never tell you dirty lies” can be taken as such, with the background of the overall story so far in mind.

Of course, there is a question of ethics and morals in using the dead to benefit the living and generate electricity. A matter that comes forward almost immediately in the press conference with the Count of Saint-Germain. However, with his unique speaking skills the Count preaches about the benefits in “Emigre”, captivating society. “A sleeping body becomes a hero.”

While feeling reassured by the words of the Count, who is now steadily creating an ideal world by expanding the “emigres” created by Louis in ways he never would have been able to do on his own, he also begins to feel uneasy. These uneasy feelings are expressed in “Mystery”, but much like the rest of the album so far you really have to read between the lines to see the story KAMIJO is trying to tell. At this point Louis is starting to wonder if his parents had to die, and if the Count could have done anything to save them. Same for the boy that took his place in the temple tower. “Stories in history, stories in mystery.”
Yet, Louis is still in this world, and he has a mission to fulfill. “You are born in this world, with a story to tell.” However, the doubt returns a little later on this album as well.

Where exactly “mademoiselle” places in the story of Louis XVII is a bit hard to tell, since Louis himself doesn’t seem to have a love interest at this time. While the next track gives us a lot more information about certain events, it seems that “mademoiselle” can be taken as a side branch of the story as a whole. Rather than illustrating a part of Louis’ story, it appears like “mademoiselle” is part of the introduction of the Crimson Family – who have had great power after the Battle of Waterloo, the final stage of the French Revolution.

Delta -Interlude-” builds up the tension for the following track, “カストラート” (Castrato). This track was released as it’s own single beforehand, and is easily both the most theatrical and orchestral track on the album. KAMIJO performs the lyrics completely in English, which is the same for the three final tracks following this one. The music video for this song is just as informative as the lyrics, and you might notice the use of actors dressed as high level security personnel. The Count and Louis traveled to America to spread his “emigres” around the world. The person in charge of a counter-energy source for “emigres” dies under mysterious circumstances, and the Count is directed by the president to work with the NSA, where they discover that the Crimson Family was involved in a series of accidents.

The British victory and Napoleon’s defeat at Waterloo were orchestrated by the Count of Saint-German, who instructed Napoleon to lose the battle and hide his identity in the Crimson Family, something the lyrics “Oh oui, every single thing, even the Napoleonic Code, was performed according to my instructions” illustrate perfectly.
The Crimson Family learned about Napoleon having “eternal life”, and hid him in a concentration camp in London for over 200 years to obtain this eternal life for themselves, where they conducted research that resulted in what they believed the source of his eternal life, as well as a vaccine that nullifies what stops the aging process.
This extract is administered to Angela, the 8th generation of the Crimson Family, by her father Evan. However, she never wakes up from her sleep, an event that is hinted at in the final verse of “カストラート” (Castrato)’s lyrics.


KAMIJO // カストラート (Castrato) (MV)


Following with the final instrumental track “Ambition -Interlude-”, the album continues with building the suspense for the final three tracks, appropriately named “Sang I”, “Sang II” and “Sang III”.
Sang I” gives us some more background information about Napoleon, who is described as a man called “hero”, who had big ambitions in his mind as a boy, leading him to a new world of democracy. But at the same time he hid his weakness behind a mask, feeling much like a castle of sand on the inside. The song ends with “Single path was allowed me to take, no other way to go. He made me a slave as he planned.”, once again referring back to the Battle of Waterloo having a predetermined ending.

Sang II” once again returns to the doubts Louis experienced earlier in the story of this album, going into more detail about Louis hearing that “King and Queen should be dead, as the lesson for the future go right, ideally”. Did Louis make the right choice in trusting the Count of Saint-Germain? Is he a friend or a foe? Is he really serving the world? Has the Count planned the life Louis is living right now?
“There is a boy waiting for you in the pyramid, who’s heart stopped beating at the temple tower. He died happily for his country, hoping you will grow to be the true crowned king.”

The final track on the album is “Sang III”, which isn’t as obvious in it’s lyrics as it’s two predecessors. But based on the lyrics from “Sang II”, “Sang III” is a continuation of Louis’ feelings for the boy who died in the temple tower in his place. “You made my life, without knowing you would be buried in history. Your spirit never dies, it stays with me.”
As you’ve probably guessed even without hearing this track, it is a very emotional piece with a lower tempo than the other two “Sang”-tracks, serving as the ending of this chapter of the history of Louis XVII.



The events taking place on “Sang” are not as detailed lyrics wise as the events on “Symphony of The Vampire” were before it, causing the listener (and me, who is crazy enough to take a deep dive into this series) to have to take some creative liberty here and there. For me personally it was very difficult to make a connection for “Mystery” and “mademoiselle” along with the rest of the album, since it feels like these songs aren’t written specifically for Louis, or from the perspective of Louis. There might be more hints that connect these tracks to the album better on the “mademoiselle” single, but I’ve set a limit for myself with this project, and that limit was to only look at the albums, since these are the main three phases illustrated on KAMIJO’s official website. This means there might be inaccuracies in all of these articles, but only KAMIJO can explain these, don’t you think?

You can find the synopsis on KAMIJO’s website, where he also illustrates the characters and the connections they all have. So if you wondered how I got the names of Angela and Evan for example, they’re all in there. Mind you, these pages are both in Japanese so you might have to get a little creative with Google Translate. This works for the synopsis, but not so much for the characters page.

The final chapter in the story so far is the 2022 album “OSCAR”.
And you bet that we’re looking at that one too. Very soon…


雪 (Yuki) is the owner and driving force behind Arlequin.
She originally started the project in 2009 as a photographer under the name of Arlequin Photography, but developed an interest in journalism and translation ever since. Because of these interests interviews and reviews were added to the project, until it eventually hit the limits as a "photographer" in 2021, and Arlequin Magazine was added to the mix.

雪 (Yuki) is a native Dutch speaker with a graphic design degree, which means she is also the main person behind Arlequin Creations.
After all these years she is still the main person who does interviews the interviews and live photos that you see on Arlequin, but also a large chunk of the reviews and behind-the-scenes work and communication goes through her.

She speaks Dutch and English on a native level, but also understands Japanese and German.

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