Rock group All That Remains have spoken of their terror after they were caught up in the Japanese earthquake last Friday (11Mar11), insisting they were lucky to escape without "a scratch".
The band flew into Tokyo on Friday ahead of a planned gig that evening and they were in the city when the massive 9.0-magnitude tremor struck, causing a devastating tsunami which swept inland and claimed the lives of thousands.
Frontman Phil Labonte recorded a video diary on his cellphone to document the aftermath of the quake, revealing the musicians fled the building they were in and ran into the street as the city shook.
He says, "Our area around (the venue) wasn't really affected in the way (the northern city of) Sendai was. There was no tsunami, there was no major damage to any buildings... (but you could sense) something has gone on."
The band was able to get to the airport the next day to catch a flight out, and Labonte has described the chaos as people tried to leave the country: "There's some places where it looks like people have been camping out, trying to get out. I guess there's been a lot of delayed flights."
He adds, "I should take a second to send our deepest sympathy to all the people that have had loved ones lost... It's really awful and we're very fortunate to not only have gotten out of Japan with no injuries and survived with not a scratch on anyone, but to be able to actually document this."
Another rock group, Murderdolls, was also in Tokyo at the time of the earthquake. The rockers also escaped unscathed, but were forced to cancel all of their shows in the country.
A statement posted on the Murderdolls website reads, "We stayed in Tokyo while other bands fled, planning to put on a great show and give you guys the good time you need right now. In the end, the promoters decided that all shows for the next few days would need to be cancelled, including ours...
"Our hearts go out to the good people of Japan and their families that have been affected by this terrible tragedy. You can help by donating $10 to the Red Cross efforts in Japan by texting Redcross to 90999."