wtorek, 23 kwietnia 2013

Interview with MEJIBRAY

I was honestly surprised at the artist photos this time around.
Tsuzuku: That’s because I wanted to wear a racing jacket (laugh).
Koichi: We presented what each of us thinks of as punk style and this is what we came up with.

Why was it “punk style”?
Tsuzuku: Originally, the band “DIE KUSSE” from Kusumoto Maki’s manga 「Kissxxxx」 was a punk band so I thought we should go with a punk style. I wanted to become Kanon (laugh).

I thought you were a different band (laugh).
Tsuzuku: This will keep happening (laugh). Who knows what Meto-kun will become from now on…

Tell me about 「DIE KUSSE」. There’s various elements packed into one song.
MiA: We expanded the song a lot because we crammed in all these elements, but because those parts aren’t long, it was nicely arranged. 「Avalon」 is a song relatively wide in scope, so I think the listener base for it is broad, as well. For example, it’s a song that say, high school fans can present their friends who aren’t fans, so for me it was a sort of “strategy to make kids who aren’t fans into fans”. In contrast, with「DIE KUSSE」I had the aim to get kids who already knew MEJIBRAY through the “strategy to make kids who aren’t fans into fans” and “make them into complete fans”, so it’s a single that really pares down the listener base.

I thought that「DIE KUSSE」 is plenty wide in scope though.
MiA: Really? 「DIE KUSSE」has shouting though. Occasionally, when talking with the powers that be, we’ll get a pretty strange response just because we’ve added shouting, so in that sense, 「Avalon」is easier to present MEJIBRAY with. I think fans will like 「DIE KUSSE」, but since we’re greedy, we want to take over various fan bases (laugh).

There’s also a section with an acoustic guitar, and it’s a melody that made me have no idea how the song would continue.
MiA: While it’s a sum of things we’ve been doing so far, I hope that we were also able to show parts of progress.
Tsuzuku: It’s a song full of everything (laugh).

What about the lyrics?
Tsuzuku: They’re about trying to move on to another love when one love ends. It kind of seems as if it’s where 「EMILY」 would go next, but since it’s just a beginning, it’s not that I thought about it that much. The lyrics are as written. Perhaps they’ll connect from here on, perhaps they won’t. That’s always my position on that and I write the way I want to write (laugh).

What about the title,「DIE KUSSE」? It means “kisses” in German, right?”
Tsuzuku: 「DIE KUSSE」sounds really cool so I used that. The manga 「Kissxxxx」is not particularly connected to the song.

Koichi-kun, which approach did you take with 「DIE KUSSE」?
Koichi: The no-thinking one, as always.
Everyone: Ahahaha.
Koichi: It was all-out self-indulgence this time, as well. I said it badly just now, but with inspiration and without thinking about anything, I played the way I wanted to play.

That’s what you call genius, right (laugh).
Koichi: It’s not genius, it’s avant-garde (laugh). It’s like, if I don’t express what I’m thinking about right away, then me playing is meaningless. Therefore, this time around was also a gift of inspiration.

The rhythm of the drums is really elaborate, too.
Meto: ………………………
Koichi: He’s saying that, since lately he’s been told a lot that the drums are good, that they’re different, he hopes he was able to establish drumming that he’s supposed to aim at and that he wants to sing to.

You went into the details this time, too?
Meto: ………………………
Koichi: They sounded disorderly at the demo stage, and looks like they made him fall asleep while he listened to them.

What about MiA-kun? The guitar solo is pretty crazy!
MiA: The distance between my thumb and middle finger is long so I can go all out when playing. Though a while ago, I tried to match it for the first time in the studio and it was painful… (laugh). The latter half sounds like finger-tapping, but actually it’s not, it’s me going crazy with the pick and playing while tapping so it’s pretty damn fast.

Are there some points in「DIE KUSSE」 that you were particular about?
Tsuzuku: That’s what I’m prone to.
Koichi: The theme of the MV was “dual nature”, and it’s a realization of something I’ve always wanted to do so I want you to see it. “Alien Kouichi” that appears there has come to invade the Earth. The story I made up for myself is that “Alien Kouichi” has come to steal all your hearts and so you have to be careful not to have them stolen (laugh). (T/N: he actually writes the alien thing as Kouichian, as though he’s an alien from a planet called Kouichi but idk it sounds weird)

The theme is “dual nature”, but for what reason?
Tsuzuku: When the development following「DIE KUSSE」 is announced, it should be clear why it’s “dual nature” now…

The kiss scene in the end is really impressive, isn’t it.
Meto: ………………………
Koichi: He’s saying that he wants you to check out his enthusiastic singing scene, as well.
Tsuzuku: There was supposed to be a kiss scene with Meto in there, too, but since he looked scary…
Everyone: Ahahaha.
Tsuzuku: This was me guessing wrong, but I thought Meto would look cuter, and like a girl punk, and so we talked about filming a scene where I kiss Meto and drop to my knees. But, that scary appearance wouldn’t cause me to buckle…(laugh)
Meto: ………………………
Koichi: He’s saying that he thinks it’s cute.
Tsuzuku: What’s “cute” on your scale was the opposite of mine (laugh). This here might be cute but…

The chorus in the intro is a female chorus right?
Tsuzuku: Yes. It’s not Meto.
MiA: It was recorded in Greece.

MiA: We have a friend from Greece (SOPHIA ex.BLOOD STAIN CHILD), to whom we sent the data and told her, “Sing it”, and she recorded it in Greece and sent it back to us.
Tsuzuku: Looks like the humidity really is different there (laugh). Feels like the raised sounds turned out dry, Greece-like (laugh).

「VIOLET」lyrics are interesting.
Tsuzuku: I just wrote about what was in my head, so I didn’t have trouble with it and I wrote it smoothly and all at once. When it comes to writing what’s in my head, there are two patterns: the type of writing when I drag out something from my past, and as 「VIOLET」, the type when I write what I’m currently thinking about, but writing what I’m currently thinking about is much easier, and it’s the same feeling as when I write the manuscript for my weird column stories.

I thought they were the type of lyrics that really make you think.
Tsuzuku: After the one-man tour, I had various troubles so I wrote these without thinking.

It was composed by MiA-kun though.
MiA: We have「Black baccarat」and「Invisible Tower maker」, and this one seems like the third part for those. Everyone likes songs with a prominent melody that you can jump to, so I made it with that in mind. It’s something I want to establish as one of the forms of MEJIBRAY.
Koichi: This song in particular I play without thinking (laugh). First I pull at the strings all like, “like this, like this, like this” and then slap like “or here?”
Tsuzuku: 「D.E.INCUBUS」is the same (laugh).
Koichi: If I can look at my own movements, I can copy it better than when I listen to it.
Tsuzuku: I can’t help but look forward to Kouichi’s personal interview (laugh).
Meto: ………………………
Koichi: He’s saying that since it’s a song whose mood is important, he placed importance on the mood. And he’s saying that when placing it in line with 「Black baccarat」and「Invisible Tower maker」, he didn’t want it to seem like the same songs, so he wondered how to make it better, and how to make it different.

「WANT」 has the exact image of the current artist photos, doesn’t it?
Tsuzuku: Yes, it does. Because we want to do punk sometimes.

Did you have any such songs so far?
Tsuzuku: We have 「Chameleon YUMMY」included in the album though this seems more like a heavy version of it. I think this one is really Kouichi’s “without thinking” type.
Koichi: Everyone’s told me that (laugh). For the backing vocals of “WANT” in the chorus of this song, we gathered our friends and the 30 of them sang it for us.
Tsuzuku: While completely naked…
Everyone: Ahahaha.

Thirty people singing naked is quite a spectacle (laugh).
Kuichi: There were certainly people who were naked but it wasn’t all of them (laugh). For this the atmosphere was everything, more so than keeping on-pitch, so the studio door was fully open and we recorded them all at once.
Tsuzuku: It’s good that we could properly record the atmosphere on the spot. The vocals also went in one take and made me pretty tired but I think it’s gonna be really fun at lives.
MiA: Everyone’s recording was in one take, and we did it so that if someone made a mistake in the middle, we’d do it over from the beginning.

Tell me about the lyrics, please.
Tsuzuku: It’s as it’s written. Simply put, it’s a song of “stolen love”.

For guitar, the approach is different than the other two songs.
MiA: For this sort of song, I played rapidly, with force.

Just in case, I guess I’ll try asking Koichi-kun, too…
Koichi: Nah…, I did this song without thinking too (laugh). I energetically played avant-garde punk.
Everyone: Ahahaha.
Koichi: This song was recorded with what’s said to be the best bass in Japan, 「Rickenbacker」.
Tsuzuku: Best in Japan in Kouichi’s opinion, you mean?
Koichi: I think it’s the coolest in Japan, and when I saw myself in the mirror while holding it, I thought “This appearance by itself is OK” (laugh).
Tsuzuku: You say it’s the best in Japan but it’s not even a Japanese bass.
Everyone: Ahahaha.
Koichi: You’re right about that (laugh).

What about Meto-kun?
Meto: ………………………
Koichi: As a drummer who wants to sing, but can’t, he doesn’t like it.
Though it’s punk, there are also catchy parts which make it MEJIBRAY-like.
Tsuzuku: There’s a mixture of moods in the middle, so that’s probably the reason it turned out catchy.
Is there something you wanted to draw attention to when it comes to this single?
Tsuzuku: Say it’s avant-garde (laugh).
Koichi: Because we have the priviledge of sending out avant-garde day after day, I hope you’ll continue watching for that from here on out.
Meto: ………………………
Koichi: He’s saying that he thinks the mixing is also a bit different than before, and he wants you to listen for that as well. Also, please write down that it’s also important not to let “Alien Kouichi” take your molars and not just hearts.

Why molars?
Tsuzuku: Because wisdom teeth only hurt, right? (T/N: as in, they only hurt but you don’t need them. you need your molars)
Everyone: Ahahaha.

MEJIBRAY lives have a peculiar world-view. How do you set them up?
Meto: ………………………
Koichi: He says they’re born naturally.
Tsuzuku: It’s not that we do it according to plan. At the beginning, there’s a strangeness to how Meto enters in a wheelchair, so that’s already our world-view. It’s not that we especially say, “We want to do it like this”. It’s when the four of us stand on stage that it becomes MEJIBRAY’s world-view regardless of place or setlist.

You already announced two tours, so what do you think they’ll be like?
Meto: ………………………
Koichi: He’s saying that it’ll be fine as long as something’s happening.
Meto: ………………………
Koichi: He says that we should keep raising the bar for the standard of a good live.
MiA: We want to do a tour that makes you think you want to see the next one, as well.
Koichi: A tour that will leave no regrets in all who attend.

For what reason did you change the tour title?
Tsuzuku: Because something will happen, right…
Koichi: There’s always something going on with MEJIBRAY, so please look forward to it.

Mejibray - Chameleon YUMMY

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