ONE OK ROCK "The Beginning" Exclusive Interview Translation, Part 1

Source: Natalie


This band is never satisfied


--We’re right in the middle of this year’s summer music fest season. I saw you at the “RISING SUN ROCK FESTIVAL” the other day; it was incredible.


Taka: Oh really? I’m glad you liked it.


--The entire audience, all the way to the back of the field, were oddly excited.


T: The truth is, when you see it from the stage you don’t really get what’s happening, but when you see the clips later you’re really surprised by how amped everyone it. It was really annoying. (laugh)


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Chatmonchy "Kira Kira Hikare" Exclusive Interview Translation

Source: Excite


If music can overcome national boundaries, than age is no boundary either


--“Kirakira Hikare” is an uptempo song with an impressive Ramones-esque beat. This is the first time you’ve put together a fast song like this.


Eriko: That’s right.


Akiko: This song was produced by Goto [Masafumi] from Asian Kung-Fu Generation, but when we asked him what kind of song he wanted us to do, he said that he wanted us to do something fast. So we did.


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Amuro Namie "Uncontrolled" Exclusive Interview Translation

Source: Oricon Style


I chose songs that I like, and that I wanted to sing


--Your new album is called “Uncontrolled,” a beautiful title that expresses freedom and acts as a symbol for your progress as a singer.


Amuro Namie: Everyone on my team puts forward ideas for the title each time, and I really like this one, too. (laugh)


--This year is the 20th anniversary of your debut. Did you create this album for that purpose?

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World Order "2012" Exclusive Interview Translation

Translated by John Thomas
Source: Natalie


Their musical roots are melo-core, blues, Mashima Masatoshi


--Sudo, I’d like to hear about your musical roots. What kind of music did you listen to when you were a student?


Sudo: I like rock, and about the time I entered high school, shred guitar was getting really popular. So anybody who could play guitar super fast was really cool. We would pass around shred guitar CDs between friends saying, “Check this guy out! He’s so fast!” (laughs). But I could never play fast like that, so I was made to play bass. That’s when the melo-core boom hit, and I started listening to bands like Green Day and NoFX.


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Abe Mao "Tatakai ha Owaranai" Exclusive Interview Translation

Translated by John Thomas

Source: Yahoo! Music Japan


I never want to be separated from the voice in my heart


--First, I want to ask about the title of the new album. The title song, “Tatakai wa Owaranai,” is an invigorating and positive rock number. When did you write it?


Abe Mao: It was January of this year. As I was writing the lyrics I thought to myself, “This is the album title!” That’s the mode I was in.


--In more concrete terms, what kind of mode would you say it was?


A: I felt like no matter how old you get or how far you go, the fight in you doesn’t end. It’s about the dreams and beliefs you’re born with... You have to fight for them despite the people trying to influence you otherwise and the difficulties you have along the way. That’s the “fight” I’m talking about.


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Sakanaction "Boku to Hana" Exclusive Interview Translation

Source: Excite


Even though we promote the drama, we thought about our strategy as a band


--Your new single, “Boku to Hana,” has been chosen as the theme song for the drama “37-Sai de Isha ni Natta Boku ~Kenshui Junjou Monogatari~.” How did you feel when you got the offer?


Yamaguchi: Before this we were thinking about what we could do to make the band bigger, so we immediately took this opportunity. We’ve made music logically up to now, and it was important to have a different perspective for that. It was requested that the song act as a mental shortcut to the show, including the lyrics, so that it would be an active part of the show. Of course, we have to express what makes us unique, and think about our strategy as a band.


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Kimura Kaela "Mamireru" Exclusive Interview Translation

Source: Oricon


Bad to “be covered” by important things


--In the liner notes for your new single “Mamireru,” you specifically request listeners to read the title with an accent on the “ma.”


Kaela: I want them to pronounce it like “parareru” [“parallel”]. The world of the internet, the world of my emotions, the world of emotions for others... There are a lot of parallel worlds, and the image here is of all those feelings people don’t share or try to get rid of, collected into a “Mamireru World.” That might be a little hard to understand because it’s just a feeling I tried to attach to the song, but that’s more or less the idea. (laugh)

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MEG "La Japonaise" Exclusive Interview Translation

Source: Natalie


The reason for my hiatus


--You stopped your activities in Japan in 2010 and moved your base of operations to France. So my first question is, what did you learn from your experiences there?


M: I released a best-of album [in Japan] in September of 2010, and then I stopped my activities after my birthday live in October, but I still had releases. Nakata [Yasutaka] is very quick at creating music, but it felt like we had the lyrics written and the music recorded for the album in three weeks.


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Orange Range "NEO POP STANDARD" Exclusive Interview Translation

Source: Natalie


We always felt a little like going against the flow


--In July of 2010, ORANGE RANGE started their own independent label, “Super Echo Label.” This is the first time you’ve spoken with us, so I’d like to ask how it felt to separate from your old label and start your own.


N: We were of course thinking a lot about whether we’d be able to convey the novelty of our situation when it came time to put out information and music. I mean, before that, when we were at our previous label, if we made music they didn’t like it wouldn’t be released, and we wouldn’t be able to play it in anticipation of a release date. But now that we have our own label we can release anything we want to do. That’s obviously a huge difference. If we think to ourselves “We want to put out some music today,” we can just up and announce it. We can play new music at our lives right away, and then release it later. When we make music, we want people to hear it immediately. Our listeners can can be in lockstep with our feelings from day to day. It’s invigorating.


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Perfume "Spring of Life" Exclusive Interview Translation

Source: Excite


--Just as you'd expect from the title, "Spring of Life" perfectly represents the season of spring.


A-chan: Perfect! When I hear it I can't help but move and sing along.


Kashiyuka: It's totally refreshing.


Nocchi: I think it's a very passionate song.


--It's your first single of 2012. Did you ever speak with Nakata Yasutaka about what kind of feeling you wanted from the song?


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Negoto "sharp #" Exclusive Interview Translation

Source: Excite


It was the first time I'd thought of it, so I was surprised


--"Sharp #" has been chosen to be the opening theme for "'Mobile Suit Gundam AGE' Asemu Arc." It's a song that conveys strong, earnest emotions. When and how did this song come to be?


Aoyama: We created it as an original song in July of last year. After that we added the orchestra, and after that we got the word about "'Mobile Suit Gundam AGE' Asemu Arc." The anime really suits the worldview of the song, which had a quick, strong feeling from the beginning. So rather than it feeling like we're using the anime as a pretext for the song, it feels like they let us write the song that we wanted to write. Until now we've tended to do music that does something really impressive with the instruments, like in "Merci Lou." But this time [Masuda] Mizuki gave us the theme of "emotions" right from the get go.


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MiChi "THERAPY" Exclusive Interview Translation

Source: Natalie


Laughter is also a kind of "therapy"


--Your second album, "THERAPY," is great! What are your thoughts on it?


MiChi: I also think it's great. (laugh) It's been a long time since I released my first album, "UP TO YOU," and there were times when I thought I wouldn't be able to finish this one. Right now I'm just happy that I was able to do it, and I'm enjoying the reaction from my listeners.


--You've released six singles in the two years since "UP TO YOU." Were you thinking about that when you released this album?


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Acid Black Cherry "2012" Exclusive Interview Translation

Source: Natalie


It feels like a huge spoiler


--So you've completed "2012," your first album in two years.


yasu: Yes, thanks to all my fans. During 2011 I was recording and writing songs at my house; it felt like I was always working on this album. It took quite a while.


--You were also constantly releasing singles.


y: That's right. To be honest, we had planned for an earlier release but it was delayed by various things and single releases were irregular, so I was worried that even my fans would forget about me. (laugh)


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Nakata Yasutaka "STEREO WORXXX" Exclusive Interview Translation

Source: Yahoo! Music Japan


It feels closer to being a manga artist than a musician


--Congratulations on completing then"STEREO WORXXX" album! What kind of album was this for you?


Nakata: I was very particular about maki gsure that it was full of the pleasure of music and an atmosphere of ringing sound. Capsule is a unit that puts out music with the utmost honesty. There are a lot of elements to the production that youwouldn't think about if they weren't there.


--Speaking of which, you work on mass productions like the music and vocals for Perfume and Kyari Pamyu Pamyu, the "ONE PIECE Ten" event and "LIAR GAME -Saisei-" soundtrack.


N: Of all those, capsule is the only project where I think about nothing but the music.


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U-KISS Exclusive Interview Translation

Source: Oricon


Now appearing at Don Quijote....It's no secret!


--It's been about two months since you debuted in Japan. Have you gotten used to it here?


All: Not at all!


Hoon: We've been really busy, so we haven't had a chance to just hang out.


SooHyun: But we've been to Don Quijote.* There's a lot of stuff there, so it's interesting.


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Tohoshinki "STILL" Exclusive Interview Translation

Source: Excite


--Your new single "STILL" will be released on 3/14, which is White Day* in Japan. Do you celebrate White Day in Korea as well?


Yunho: Yes, we do.


--Do you have any White Day memories?


Chagmin: Giving something back to the girl who gave something to me. (laugh)


--What?! That's not a present, that's a repayment!


C: Hahaha, I was just kidding. But I don't have any romantic episodes on White Day. I do of course give presents to people who gave me presents. I'm also the kind of person who wants to give presents even to the people who didn't give me anything on Valentine's Day.


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Alice Nine "9" Exclusive Interview Translation

Source: Natalie


We didn't need to do the impossible to show who we are


--Musicality that isn't caught up in the genre, a grand worldview that envelops the entire album. This album, appropriately named "9," really shows off the special qualities of Alice Nine. What are your thoughts on it?


Shou (vocals): We're a band that's turned our hands to various genres since the beginning. We didn't go through that stage where we're a new band just trying things out; we hit upon a sound that we liked on our previous album, "GEMINI," and "VANDALIZE" before it. On "9" it feels like we're returning to the standard Alice Nine, but we're taking advantage of the challenges we experienced to give the sound a persuasive power. I think that this album is the one where we loudly proclaim, "This is who we are as a band."


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