There are five bands that go by the name Walrus. One is a cool psychedelic-rock band from Halifax,one an Indie band from Australia, one a Chicago rock band, and a Korean indie-rock band. The others, as described below, are a Japanese shoegazer group and an English progressive rock band.
**UK '70s band**
Walrus were formed in the London area by Steve Hawthorn and sought to fuse jazz and rock. With a strong brass section, Walrus emerged as an eight-piece touring band in early 1970. Their similarity to the successful Keef Hartley Band led Decca records to add Walrus to their Deram roster in June of the same year. Their eponymous debut album followed that same December. Despite, or perhaps because of, this quick turnaround the album was not a success and by 1972, despite continuing to draw a strong live following, the band split up. The band's members largely disappeared into obscurity, with the exception of sometime drummer Ian Mosley who later joined Marillion.
With their loud waves of drone, distortion, and feedback, Walrus fit in perfectly into the "shoegazer" category. But what keeps them seperate from other shoegaze bands is that Walrus conceives such atmosphere in their dreamy landscapes that gives them an epic feel to their compositions, which are all mainly written by vocalist/guitarist Akitomo Tanaka.
Walrus formed in 1997 and right off the bat were making as many recordings as possible and playing an extensive amount of live shows. The following year in 1998 they would sign with TEICHIKU and begin reocrding in a studio. They would later travel to London, England for mastering.
Their first releases were Virus and Vaccine- Virus being the more abrasive and brute side of the band, while Vaccine showed how their songs bring the feel of dreams to reality. During this period, they would tour with such artists as Mover, MANSUN, and SUNNY DAY REAL ESTATE. They were also gaining more exposure from Japanse DJs who would spin their records such as DJ TSUYOSHI, Hirofumi Asamoto, DUB SQUAD, and EYE (from Boredoms fame).
They released their first single, "Kara no kokoro", in January of 1999. They would release one more single before releasing their first full length album, Seven, in November of 1999. As the band kept gaining more momentum, they would play the Fuji Rock Festival in July of 2000. This sparked their first nation-wide tour which began in October of 2000.
November of that same year would bring the release of their second, and most ambitious album, Hikari no kakera. The album continued their mix of melody and feedback and merged more into noise-rock territory with the title track.
Walrus have always continued to have a strong presence in the live circuit touring with such artists as auto pilot, cruyff in the bedroom, and Marseeside Derby. They also have released two more albums: 20012002, a collection of tracks recorded during the long period of no releases after Hikari no kakera and the self-titled Walrus, released in 2004.