the GazettE, having entered their 9th year since their formation. Despite there being changes with time, listening to their music and watching their Lives, what one always thinks is how they have consistently followed the course of maintaining their perfection. Consequently, a group interview taking a close-up look at the enviable relationship among the 5 members. We also received advance information regarding “SHIVER” coming out soon, and the imminent long tour drawing closer.
--------Once again, as the relationship among the 5 of you as the theme, please let us hear about the parts of you that have changed, and the parts that haven’t. We’ve talked about how since the early times the GazettE have had the sort of relationship where you can quarrel over anything without having to take each other into consideration, but have there been any changes to that recently?
Ruki—The 4 of us haven’t changed, you know. But talking of ever since we started, (looking at Kai), there’s this new participant, you see (laughs).
Reita—In the beginning, he wasn’t quite the one to get bullied, was he now.
Kai—More than that, I wasn’t one to be outdone by others (laughs).
Aoi—He was very frank so he’d make a lot of noise, but these days, he tends to be more mellow with his image (laughs).
--------So basically because Kai has adapted, everybody else has remained unchanged.
Ruki—We haven’t changed, but we feel sort of tired (laughs). Even if the members get together, we don’t make as much noise as we used to in the past (laughs). I mean, isn’t that how things are?
Reita—Ruki is noisy (laughs).
Ruki—No, I’m not noisy, but I feel we no longer fool around as much as we used to do in the past.
Aoi—Ah, that explosiveness has gone, right? (laughs)
Ruki—Even the memory has gone (laughs).
--------(laughs) Apart from band stuff, do you also normally quarrel over private matters?
Ruki—On the contrary, we talk of nothing but private matters. If we start talking about band stuff the build-up just slows down (laughs). For example, if we get talking about soccer or games, we go “Oh~yeah!”, but if it gets to “What about the songs?”, we’re all, “Hm~”.
Reita—Doesn’t Ruki make the most fuss?
Aoi—Well, without a doubt, Ruki is the King of Digression (laughs).
Reita—The type who isn’t suited to be a (train) conductor (laughs). In the past, Kai was the one who used to give us the laughs, you know. Sending weird picture-mails, and stuff (laughs). But these days, not that much.
Kai—I almost wonder whether or not it happened even once in the entire year, me making everybody laugh.
Ruki—You probably did try to make us laugh, but ended up irritating us instead (laughs).
Uruha—But there are those times when you introduce interesting movies to us, right?
Reita—Hats off to Kai’s sense of movies (laughs).
Ruki—Because there’s a punch line waiting after one has finished watching the movie, isn’t it?
Uruha—He creates an original side-story for us (laughs).
--------What if the taste in movies doesn’t match? Aren’t there members in the GazettE who don’t talk about their private matters?
Aoi—Well, we don’t talk about the finer details, you know. Just to the extent of answering if asked.
--------So, is the way all of you deal with these distances the same?
Ruki—Well it’s not as if we keep secrets from each other (laughs). Say there’s a holiday, so it goes like, “Did you go somewhere?” and “Eh? I didn’t.”.
--------For example, if there’s someone in really low spirits, or is clearly not feeling well, what sort of a band is the GazettE in response to such a situation?
Reita—Well, we prepare a Mikoshi and give them a ride (laughs).
Uruha—We don’t get company from anybody if we can’t raise our own spirits (laughs).
Ruki—Hm. We just get left behind, isn’t it? (laughs)
Uruha—Unless we get into it ourselves, nobody talks to us (laughs).
--------(laughs) You get ignored.
Ruki—And after a while, the atmosphere turns such that it becomes difficult to get into the conversation by yourself (laughs).
Uruha—If you’re tired and you get into it for no reason, then you’ll get hurt (laughs).
--------Is there no one of the sort who worries and asks, “What’s wrong?”?
Ruki—Yes. On the contrary, we’re the sort of band where if someone does worry, he’s asked “What’s wrong?” instead (laughs).
--------Isn’t there a bothersome, motherly-type here?
Uruha—Kai was, in the past.
Kai—Is that so? But that wasn’t how it was.
--------Hahaha. You’re all mother-less, aren’t you.
Ruki—Let alone a mother, there isn’t even a father (laughs).
--------Parent-less. Still, there must have been changes, at a personal level, among all of you, so we’d like to have all of you talk about each person’s case. Starting with Kai?
Reita—(Kai is) tired, isn’t it?
--------Is that grief floating about?
Ruki—It’s not grief, you know. It’s despair (laughs). Like falling down to the depths.
Kai—Well, I, sort of, don’t talk much these days, do I?
Ruki—Not being there even for the recording, etc.
Uruha—He’s not well.
Kai—No, I’m fine.
Uruha—And, his lips are gradually turning purple (laughs).
Aoi—Even though he says he isn’t unwell.
Reita—His eyes look dead (laughs).
--------There isn’t even one good thing being said over here.
Kai—But I’m happy at the times when I’m with everybody, you know.
Aoi—That, is so true (laughs).
--------How about Uruha?
Reita—He uses his iPhone a lot, doesn’t he?
Ruki—Before we knew it, he had turned into an expert on home appliances (laughs). But, he hasn’t changed much, you know. He’s always been obsessive and fond of new things. Even for a car, he fixates over all the things one can fixate over.
--------The obsessiveness remains unchanged. What have you been obsessing over recently?
Ruki—Home appliances, isn’t it? (laughs)
Uruha—(laughs) Those aren’t home appliances, are they?
Aoi—There isn’t even one level-headed person here, you see. But Uruha always seems to carry the bearing of the most level-headed one, so how about that? (laughs)
Aoi—He’s admirable, you know. Since the former days, he’d come to the Studio even if it weren’t his recording.
Ruki—Ah, that’s true.
Kai—He still hasn’t changed, in that aspect.
Aoi—He looks at the band as a whole. Before we knew it, he had turned into a bandmaster-like figure.
Uruha—Didn’t you say things like “Won’t you come?” for the initial (vocals) recording? (laughs).
Ruki—Hahaha. We went to the studio together, didn’t we?
--------You mean, there’s never a time when Uruha isn’t at the Studio?
Uruha—Hey that’s not true, you know. I just thought, I had to go until Kai’s part came along (laughs).
Kai—(wry smile) Hey that’s not true. I go there too (laughs).
Reita—That’s because he, goes to watch the movies (laughs).
--------Ah, to look for movies to recommend to the members, right? (laughs)
Kai—No, no, no.
Ruki—You do go (laughs).
--------How about Reita?
Ruki—Hm~, the impression hasn’t changed much, I suppose. He stopped wearing Aloha tee-shirts (laughs).
Aoi—(looking at Reita’s attire) The low-quality hasn’t changed, has it?
Reita—What low-quality? Aren’t these fashionable denims? (laughs)
Ruki—Well, he hasn’t changed. Him wearing white shoes, that hasn’t changed, first of all. (laughs)
Uruha—Look at you! At a glance, doesn’t your appearance look low-quality?
Ruki—I mean, doesn’t it peev you? (laughs)
Ruki—Are you wild?
Aoi—Could be wild, or could be that he doesn’t have money (laughs). The potential doesn’t change, you see.
Ruki—The shallowness of potential.
Reita—I’m the only one whose attire keeps getting talked about all the time. If you look at it from a gaudy perspective, it could be called gaudy (laughs).
Uruha—Like, wearing a Yokosuka jumper from the recordings (laughs).
Reita—(laughs) Sukajan, right?
--------There’s also the thing about not letting go of things one likes, isn’t it?
Reita—The bothersome things (about me) haven’t changed.
Kai—Didn’t they change? You never used to move, in the past.
--------It’s not visible at a glance, is it, the bothersome part.
Ruki—If there’s be a break for 3 days, he’d stay cooped up at his place eating things from the convenience store for all the 3 days.
Reita—True. Food is really cumbersome, isn’t it? I’d stock up on convenience store food. And then my parents wouldn’t be able to stay indifferent to it any longer and would send me vegetable juice.
Uruha—So eventually, didn’t those things have a “Best Before” date?
Kai—His eating habits still haven’t changed.
--------How about Ruki?
Reita—There isn’t anything except things we can’t talk about (laughs).
Aoi—Can’t be said, isn’t it? (laughs). But, Ruki hasn’t changed much either, has he?
Reita—Hm. He hasn’t changed, so I don’t have much interest in him (laughs).
Ruki—I don’t have much interest in myself either (laughs).
Uruha—How many clothes do you have? That, to this day, has been a mystery, isn’t it?
Ruki—(laughs) That, isn’t a mystery~. Don’t ask me about it~.
Uruha—And yet, I have never seen you wearing the same clothes twice.
Reita—Your (tee-shirt sleeves) don’t even get frayed like mine do (laughs).
Reita—Oh, here’s something that’s changed about Ruki. For example, when I’m telling an interesting story to someone, he forcibly shoves himself into the conversation with an interesting story of his own, right? (laughs)
Ruki—Isn’t that something that hasn’t changed? (laughs)
Uruha—Talking of things that have changed, he’s no longer as amiable as he used to be, you know.
Ruki—What, I got lonely (laughs).
--------As in, a little lonely, because he doesn’t get invited over all that much?
Uruha—A little lonely.
Aoi—If there’s a mail, once in a while, I get really happy. Because I feel that I too am still dependable (laughs).
--------Were the mails very frequent earlier?
Aoi—I used to be asked various things, but it’s as if my duties are over now (laughs).
Reita—Also, he’s stopped losing things. In the past, he was just like Kai (laughs). Like, he’d go to the Parking and forget his wallet, and all.
Ruki—Recently, I think there have only been instances like, say, during shopping, I only pay the money, and think that I’ve taken the bought articles with me, but only realize that after someone calls out to stop me. I don’t make any huge blunders.
--------Eh. Would you, like, forget your mobile phone in the past?
Ruki—Like, I’d forget the house I had to return to (laughs).
--------(laughs) Don’t forget that, alright? Did you think about remedying this?
Ruki—I didn’t think about remedying it as such, but I just think, “It’ll be bad to lose this”, so things don’t get lost then.
Kai—Well, it’s perhaps just that they (lost things) slip out of sight. And it’s just that people like me happen to stand out.
Ruki—Kai has changed in that aspect (laughs).
--------Well, he stands out even in that sense, doesn’t he?
Aoi—There’s something that bothers me though……Do you know Kai’s e-mail address?
Aoi—Ah, really? Well, good then.
Ruki—(reads out the address looking at his phone)
Kai—Don’t say it, don’t say it (laughs). It hasn’t yet been registered.
Ruki—This fellow keeps changing it constantly, you know (laughs).
Kai—Even to the extent of asking “What’s my address?” to Reita.
Uruha—Because you keep changing it, right?
Aoi—True. Don’t I also send mails to everybody in a group? It’s always like, ‘You changed it again?’.
Kai—No, no, no, I don’t change it that much!
--------Lastly, what about Aoi?
Reita—He stopped giving us cigarettes on birthdays (laughs).
Uruha—He stopped sending mails on birthdays (laughs).
Reita—In the past, at times when there was no money even to buy cigarettes……
Aoi—It’s always that, when the talk turns to me, isn’t it (laughs)
Ruki—He gave us treats, once in a while.
Kai—That hasn’t changed.
Uruha—He gave us a treat quite recently too.
--------He’s a lavisher, isn’t he?
Ruki—Hm, that’s true.
Aoi—I haven’t changed, perhaps.
--------Haven’t changed, much like Reita?
Aoi—Having that said about me was slightly, unexpected (laughs).
Kai—But Aoi hasn’t changed much, has he?
Ruki—He’s become a lot more harmonious. He was like a sharp knife in the past (laughs). Now he’s the most genial one, and kind even to the juniors.
Aoi—I guess I just got tired.
--------Of being a sharp knife?
Aoi—Of being so unrelenting.
Ruki—And as a backlash, Kai has started being unrelenting (laughs).
--------Is Kai going through his rebellious age right now?
Uruha—He’s going fresher day by day (laughs).
Uruha—(looking at Aoi) But, hasn’t his attire turned chic? (laughs)
Ruki—With the days, isn’t it? (laughs) For a time, he’d wear those Cowichan sweaters, you know (laughs).
--------That could be because of having grown up, isn’t it?
Aoi—I’m an adult, of course. It’s been 8 years already.
Reita—The playing style changed too, isn’t it?
Uruha—(laughs) Talk about music came forth, finally~
Ruki—Let’s change the way we’re doing this interview, now onwards (laughs)
Uruha—The style, frankly, has turned to metal.
Kai—It has a sort of kick-ass feel to it.
Aoi—If you say that, won’t the people who like metal go and hide themselves in shame? (laughs)
Ruki—Like playing guitars which have such shapes they don’t seem to have a skeleton, but playing such guitars sets a really good mood.
--------You’re adults normally, but you do keep such guitars, isn’t it? Although there haven’t been any changes in your characters as such, your parts have certainly seen some transformations, haven’t they?
Uruha—Just with Ruki having carefully collected experience points, the transformation shows itself on stage, as in, as a vocalist, he was a novice in the past, but at some time, as the Tours went by, he just changed, all of a sudden.
Reita—There is a heightened awareness of things.
Aoi—We also look after our voices.
Reita—True! I never thought this fellow would ever do such a thing, you know (laughs).
Aoi—I do it very thoroughly.
--------And what about Reita?
Reita—I suppose it’s good that I haven’t changed.
Aoi—But, he doesn’t much go in front of the stage anymore.
Kai—Aa, and he’s also stopped doing those weird movements (laughs).
Ruki—He’s turned rather profound.
Aoi—The performance and the feel used to be typically guitar-like. So in the past, there never was an occasion when I felt that I could pose a hindrance too (laughs).
Reita—When we went to Fukuoka for our first One-Man, I got quite a fright from the staff.
Reita—I got told things like, ‘Don’t you think you go to the front a bit too much, despite being the Bassist?’ (laughs).
Uruha—That’s because earlier, you came almost uptil me while doing a front somersault.
Reita—That was because I tumbled on the stage, you know (laughs).
Uruha—Aoi saw that and he was just bent double with laughter (laughs).
--------So the change has been that you have attained a sense of stability regarding your role as a bassist.
Ruki—I have a feeling Uruha was really evil in the past (laughs). There were even times when he’d be reckless enough to go to the extent of saying things like “Wait a little, would you?”.
Uruha—(laughs) Rather than creating an impression, I just go on repeating things quickly, or end up getting too excited over the Live.
Ruki—The twin-guitars are substantially established now.
Kai—There used to be a fair amount of fluctuation in the past, but now things have a more heavy feel to them.
Ruki—I feel that the phrases have changed too. In the past, the guitar phrases sounding like solemn sobs were numerous, but now there are more of the typical solos being played. Each phrase has become more detailed, in a way.
Aoi—Half the fixation I used to have over the sounds is already gone. Aren’t we like, pursuing various types of goals? Not that I know, really (laughs).
-------A display of your enthusiasm.
Aoi—Well, even as a guitarist, it’s a ‘Have I worked this much?’ sort of a thing.
Reita—Kai has started revealing himself, steadily.
Ruki—In the past, he used to say he didn’t want to stand out because he was the drummer. That was because his image would fade because of the GazettE (laughs), but ultimately, I think he wanted to stand out.
Aoi—Talking of which, he used to say he didn’t want to be conspicuous.
Uruha—True, true. While returning from the Lives, when everybody else would be asleep in the car, he’d keep telling me about it, how he was “facing downwards and drumming”.
Uruha—I wonder why, recently, he keeps on changing his looks and trying out different things.
Ruki—Kai’s look has been sort of ferocious, and at other times it has been like a gentle elder brother, so I’m really looking forward to what it’ll turn out to be hereafter.
--------In that sense, has the style seen the most change?
Aoi—The change is in progress. Isn’t the search still on? (laughs)
Ruki—Which way will it roll?
Aoi—He even seems to be obsessing over his drum-set.
--------Looking forward to it. Well, before long, the new single, “SHIVER” will be released. Please tell us what sentiment you’re looking to send out through this song. Are you betting upon its success or failure?
Aoi—We felt that the fans must also be sensitive to the fact that this is the work being released at the time when the environment of the GazettE itself is changing. Besides, there was the matter of presenting a clear picture of the band, so when we talked about all of this, we decided to have “SHIVER” as the main song.
--------Does it also have the outlook the band originally held?
Aoi—That’s like a constant, I mean, although recently, there have been many songs which have brought out the core aspects, this one was naturally melodious and aggressive, so we thought it would be nice to release this song now.
--------I suppose you also wanted to once again feel what it’s like to work at a song with a sprinty, pop-ish feel like “SHIVER”.
Aoi—Ah, I think the framework of the song turned out quite mature. We used to make more of a racket in the past.
--------The level of the construction of the song is surely different.
Aoi—I feel I understand now what each one has to express.
Ruki—Had it been even a while back, I think I’d have been somewhat reluctant to release this song as a Single.
--------Why would that be?
Ruki—I wanted to stress upon a heavier and darker aspect than this song. But when we were reviewing things all over again, I thought how it wasn’t important to be so obstinate about it. The song that was made then was “SHIVER”. It’s a straight song, has a sprinty feel to it and immediately conveys a sense of the band.
Reita—Though the environment has changed with the transfer to another recording company, we kept going with the same style as we’ve always had as our foundation, and since nothing has changed and we agreed among ourselves before making it, I think this Single is just right to display the GazettE style once again.
--------It’s a single you’re putting forward with confidence, isn’t it?
Reita—Right. That way, we won’t get perturbed by whatever is spoken about it.
Uruha—Isn’t a single something which should convey “This is the GazettE right now!” at once when you hear it? “SHIVER” was the closest to what image everybody held of us. For example, on the TV, of all the world of material being propagated, doesn’t a part of some catchphrase just hit you at once, by chance? Accordingly, we went for a song which would create an impression instantaneously.
--------A song which would hold them in an instant.
Uruha—That was essential.
Kai—About the matter of winning or losing, it’s something that is there every time, being the way we are, but since the environment around us has seen pragmatic changes, there is also a change of attitude in that sense, then I could see a new sign within me and it was about taking a shot at it.
--------A new sign, as in?
Kai—Well, I can’t say anything specifically yet, I mean, it’s just a feeling one has at the initial stages of having a goal, you know.
--------Is that a new sign? Or was it, in one way or the other, a sign which was already there?
Kai—Hmm, it’s an implicit sign.
--------Though the single this time is pop for the GazettE, it has a characteristically harsh taste, and talking in terms of food, it leaves the tongue feeling quite numb (laughs). It’s thorny, in a way. I hope the people listening to it will feel it too.
Aoi—If the thorns are gone, it’s not rock, you see.
--------Well then, finally, how do you feel the Tour “NAMELESS LIBERTY SIX BULLETS”, marking your first Tour-Commencement at Budoukan, will turn out to be? What have you been specifically planning for?
Ruki—It’s still at the decision-making stage, you know. It’ll still take some time.
Reita—The foundation has been set, though. I think, compared to last time, there is sheer volume present this time.
--------A never-seen-before display?
Ruki—More than never-seen-before, we imagine them to be Lives which will specialize in what we’ve wanted to show all this time. In a way that even the visuals will be deeply moving, and there will be that much more passion in it.
Aoi—Based upon what we’ve been doing all this time, we thought about how we could put forward the polished version now.
Uruha—It’ll be a bad Tour unless each thing is set to its precise form and nothing is left ambiguous, isn’t it? If we don’t constantly keep an eye over every step, we won’t get the results we want. I think it’ll turn out to be that relentless a Tour, you know.
Ruki—As in, ‘How far can we go?’.
Aoi—Because it’s the second Tour designated “NAMELESS~”, you see? It’s time for a bit of a match, for victory and defeat.
--------4 years after that Tour, what does the scene look like?
Aoi—Right. Even that was a Tour of victory and defeat, so let’s not forget those same feelings this time again.
--------Like Kai also said, it’ll be a Tour setting new landmarks.
Aoi—Well, if one generalizes it that way, it’ll turn out to be just that sort of a Tour (laughs).
1. They're so much love when they're in the mood:D I was giggling all the time while translating this:D
2. I'm sure I would have made errors in places, so if there are any mistranslations or something which is not quite clear, do let me know!
3 Scans are from [rawkstarr23] at [gazette_daily@lj]. Thank you!
4. Enjoy the dork-fest ♥ !