Wednesday, 21 September 2011

Fool’s Mate – January 2004 – the GazettE’s interview

Taihai Geishakei Hankou Kiroku [Criminal Record of Decadent Artistry]

First interview with the GazettE, under the title “Dai Nihon Itan Geisha”, showing a steep rise in popularity throughout the country. Introductory text to the GazettE taking questions about everything from the sweet beginnings of their five-some to the latest state of affairs. Disliking without knowing is the loss of a lifetime, so wouldn’t you too like to step inside and take a look at the world of the GazettE?

This being your first appearance for this magazine, let us start with the story of the formation of your band!

Uruha – Me, Reita and Ruki were in a band together before the GazettE.

Reita – By the way, me and Uruha have grown up together ever since 4th year of Elementary School!

It’s been a long association then.

Reita – Yes!

Uruha – Ruki was originally a drummer, but he was quite good at writing lyrics so we got him as the vocalist for that band. And we got the original vocalist to be the drummer (laughs). Well, anything to make things ultimately turn out well.

Ruki – Like, breaking up (laughs).

Uruha – But, the three of us – me, Reita and Ruki had become really close friends by then and we decided “The three of us want to do this together again!”

Reita – And then we started searching for members.

And the one you met was Aoi?

Uruha – No, Aoi……

Aoi – What do you mean, saying that so awfully! (laughs)

Uruha – There was no drummer, so we got an acquaintance introduce us to an earlier drummer.

Reita – And then, just because he was the guitarist of the same band as the drummer, someone barged into the set-up.

What do you mean “barged in” (laughs) Didn’t you have the idea of a twin guitarist in mind originally?

Uruha – No, it’s not that we never even thought about it. I just wasn’t sure if it might be a disadvantage (laughs).

Aoi – Eh? Is that so? To that level? You’re lying aren’t you!!

Reita – Such a well concealed matter too……you know (laughs).

Aoi – Ah, is that so……although right now, I’m in a lot of shock (laughs).

And with that the GazettE got going in January 2002. Kai wasn’t there in the beginning, right?

Uruha – Yes. We had a different drummer. We met Kai at a session Live at exactly the same time that person quit, so he joined the band.

Kai – I was already acquainted to Ruki, and knew about the GazettE too and thought they were cool, so when I was asked “Won’t you do it for us”, I said “My pleasure” without any objections.

That was in February this year. Since then the five of you have continued vigorously with music releases and Live activities.

Everybody – Right!

What’s the concept of the GazettE? – Although the cover comes with the catchphrase “Dai Nihon Itan Geisha [The Great Japan Heretic Artists]”.

Uruha – It refers to our aspirations; how we always want to be different from the rest, how we want to be heretics.

Ruki – Like, defying everything.

Uruha – But, it’s not about doing only what is different; we want to empathize with whatever draws our empathy.

Ruki – In terms of music, that range can get quite extensive.

True, there really are a lot of songs ranging from dark and intense to heartrendingly melodious.

Ruki – We ourselves don’t carry any notions like “This is what the GazettE is!” We’re a band that plays songs of every hue.

Kai – On the contrary, it would be nice if this would become a hue unto itself.

Uruha – But there is a foundation, you know. Something like an “over the top”, vehement kind of feel.

Aoi – Also, if one talks about the point of a song, there are various things that unfold within the length of a single song. We’re determined to make songs which carry various outlooks. Not very fond of things just gliding past.

Uruha – Occasionally, there are also songs which get over in a flash. Also, for some reason, there are ones with those old-school melodies. I heard a foreigner somewhere saying “Wonder why Japanese people go on adopting new things. Why don’t they care more about the older, nicer things?” and I thought “I see~”.

Ruki – I feel that the old songs have a deeper impact emotionally, compared to the new ones. One still remembers them, and they’re easy on the ears. For that reason, we adopt those aspects.

Incidentally, who builds the core of the song?

Kai – Ruki brings the original melody, and then we discuss it like th~is and th~at among ourselves and finish it up.

Ruki writes the lyrics too, right?

Ruki – The point is how to express the mentality of people through words. To disclose things directly, without speaking in a roundabout manner.

Kai – I’m always surprised by Ruki’s lyrics. He’s so good at how he expresses things. He writes lyrics which make one feel “Aah, I get it I get it!” “This really does happen”.

Even among those, there are a lot of times when you write about sentiments of loss, of things which ordinarily don’t get expressed openly.

Ruki – That’s true. There really are a lot of those.

Reita – Normally, Ruki can express anything. This fellow is quite frank with his feelings. Like a stereotypical B-type [blood group].

Uruha – Generally speaking, careless and untidy.

Aoi – But, isn’t he quite methodical about his own place?

Ruki – I’m methodical about my own things.

Kai – And that is why he’s stereotypical. SELF-CENTERED.

But I think it’s better to have a somewhat self-centered person for a vocalist, right?

Uruha – It would be a matter of such great adulation if that could turn into a plus point.

Ruki – (face flushing with agitation)

Reita – He’s REALLY showing it frankly (laughs).

He’s just awfully honest, isn’t he?

Reita – He even lies in a way that he’d get caught immediately. Well, in a word, he’s an idiot.

(laughs) Well, what about you, Aoi? Talking of which, haven’t you been in low spirits for a while?

Aoi – ……’cause I’m depressed. Am I being made a part of this as a last resort? My mind is heavy with that thought……I won’t be a part of this conversation anymo~re.

All members – (laughing out)!

Are you getting concerned about what we just talked?

Uruha – Not really, right?

Reita – Hm. Not really.

Aoi – Is that all? Isn’t your defence a bit too lacking!?

Well well (laughs).

Reita – He is stubborn. Inflexible!

Ruki – Childish.

Reita – Elementary School Student.

Aoi – This isn’t a gathering to get me depressed, is it?

Reita – Look, impressions are very important on a debut appearance.

Aoi – Isn’t Kai supposed to be the one getting bullied!? You’ve got the wrong guy!

Uruha – Aoi is the type of person who constantly seeks out the aesthetics.

Aoi – (with “Well spoken!” written on his face) I play the guitar on the left, so even if I’m working out the aesthetics of the staging for myself, this (Reita) keeps on being a nuisance, with his “Me me”!

Reita – Liar! (laughs)

That is probably just Reita being a show-off……or something.

Reita – That is not true. Not true at all. I’m so humble and low-key. Keeping a poker face.

Aoi – That’s not true! If you think or perceive something I see it on your face right before my eyes!

Uruha – He has tremendous power of keeping things hidden to himself.

We were talking about the stage right now, isn’t it? How’s he ordinarily?

Reita – Ordinarily, I pay too much attention to the things around me and my sensitivity wears out……in fact I’m left with no sensitivity at all. There’s a fellow who gets lonely easily, so I go accost them or something.

Uruha – Basically it’s Ruki and Kai who get emotionally attached.

Reita – Speaking in terms of soccer, I’m like the midfielder, you know. Always looking all around before giving a pass……like gauging the atmosphere. Sometimes I get called an air-conditioner.

Aoi – I’ve never said tha~t! (laughs)

It’s like bearing the motherly role in the band, isn’t it? What kind of a person is Uruha?

Aoi – Extremely obstinate.

Uruha – Obstinate, is it? But indeed, I don’t budge from what I think.

Ruki – It’s like if you say something you’ll probably get beaten up (laughs).

Uruha – But, if I feel that I’m making a mistake, I earnestly recheck and confirm things.

Ruki – No~? You just try to bend the truth (laughs). Like, ‘I define the rules!’

Uruha – Aren’t there times when that sort of a thing is also necessary? (laughs)

Reita – YOU don’t make a mistake! That is why I stay with you!

(laughs) A motherly existence within the band. Well, what about Kai?

Reita – Well, there’s nothing special about him.

All members – (laughing out)!

Aoi – Strangely enough, he’s the most serious one.

Uruha – I think he’s the type who does everything untiringly.

Ruki – What do you think of this yourself?

Kai – My wish, I suppose, is to be the centre of laughter. I like getting teased. As long as I keep getting teased and the laughter keeps coming, I’d be enjoying myself immensely.

Reita – You haven’t put that ruse to practice for even 10 minutes until now!

Aoi – If done so, it works really well at breaking the ice. Break the ice by teasing him. This is important.

Uruha – It is an essential requirement for getting him excited (laughs).

(laughs) I imagined you all to be these cool sort of people when I saw the art-pictures but in reality you’re all just brimming with a unique kind of humanity (laughs). Well then, what are your plans up ahead?

Ruki – There’s a One-Man at Shibuya AX on January 16th. We’re simply looking forward to it……

Aoi – None of us have been there, you know, to AX (laughs). On the day itself, we just hope we won’t lose our senses in shock when we go there.

Reita – It’s our first One-Man at a big venue, so I wonder how much aura we’ll have to build up to not look small, to what extent we’ll be able to do something that would be distinctive of a big stage. I’m really looking forward to it.

Kai – We intend to make it a Live which will leave behind an impression, so we want everybody to carry that expectation.

Uruha – Our sense of unity gives us the confidence to conquer any place. I would want the people who want to feel “This is what a Live is” to definitely come and watch us.

And finally, what is the mark of the GazettE?

Aoi – We always keep our aspirations high, no matter what.

Ruki – Without forgetting those first feelings we had when we formed this band, we want to be even more spirited.

Spirited?? Did you, by any chance, mean diligent?

Ruki – Ah, that’s right!

Aoi – Sorry, basically we’re not very intelligent……

Everybody – (roars of laughter)

Ducky's Notes:
1. Text in smaller size, in square brackets, consists of translator's notes. Other text in normal brackets was there in the original text itself.
2. Aoi did refer to Reita as 'this'; it is not just a choice of words in translation.