Itfs hard to understand the importance of a band like Killie without a little understanding of the history of the Japanese hardcore/punk scene. Unlike here in the States, they donft have a history marked by great independent show spaces, or bands bucking the system and still becoming huge. The hardcore/punk scene has always been stuck in the underground, a mere counter-culture. Most Japanese males grow out of it, put on a suit, and forget they were ever at a sweaty club listening to great music. With all of Japanfs freedoms and its gpeacefulh society, itfs surprising how hostile it is towards the DIY ethic in the underground.
Most of the Japanese bands that have been around for as long as Ifve been noticing arenft extremely politically/socially active. Sure, theyfll have some anti-war lyrics, talking about something personal or some problem with society, but rarely does the band expand on these ideas.
It also seems that since I left Japan, the scene has gotten worse than before. I can remember going to incredible shows at practice spaces with 20 people, stuck in a sound proofed room with a great band playing their hearts in front of you. This was a close-knit scene. Apparently, the scene has risen in popularity and the ethics were lost. We can see parallels in the USA with things like Hot Topic, Victory Records, mall punk kids, etc.
And then, along comes Killie, from the ashes of many great Japanese bands. Theyfre out to change things no matter what people think.
I really enjoyed doing this interview. It is definitely the most interesting conversation Ifve ever had with a Japanese band. And, apologies for when the grammar gets a little difficult, I tried my best to make it as clear as possible.
Check Killie out at: http://killie.jp/
Available at Salvation Records Website: http://www.myownsalvation.com/
Interview by Ryan Lewis (firstname.lastname@example.org)
1. First of all, tell me a little about killie. Members, history, etc. Also, how do your pronounce Killie, and what does it mean?
Before I start answering questions, I just want to explain why we decided to do this interview. Basically our band doesn't do any domestic or uninteresting interviews. We haven't answered to a single one yet. We are answering to this one because it's being published oversea and we are very concerned with the people and contents involved with this interview. There are very few zines or free magazines that exist here in Japan, and from my point of view, all of them lack the quality of content like the dense zines that might exist in your country. Most of the zines and free magazines we see here in Japan have only half page interviews, filled with a bunch of shitty contents like, "Yeah, I met Kobayashi at a class in high school; he seemed to be an interesting person. I hope you'll look forward to our new album." I don't give a damn about Kobayashi and doubt the possibility that the band can talk their minds out in just a half of a page, at least not enough for us. All of those magazines feature a lot of independent bands here in Japan, but they are mostly manipulated by capitalizing record companies to distribute their materials. And this gives me the feeling that they are not treating the bands with their heart. I always put hope in those zines that are written by a small number of people to be the counter-culture against such magazines, but in the end, they are just a waste of paper with ridiculous interviews about how sexy the band looks. This makes me think that bands here in Japan have no concept of interviews and due to the rising saturation level of computers, the receivers and senders of this scene are just leaving a blank space of contents. Ironically, this leads to the failing sales of these magazines.
By answering to an overseas interview, we want to convey and share our messages towards foreigners. As a Japanese band that speaks in Japanese to Japanese people, wefre interested in how you will respond to this. Personally, although I listen to a lot of overseas bands, I don't understand English very well. I don't have many chances to see such bands on stage, so I read a lot of interviews, and if there are translations attached to the lyrics, or explanations, I always make sure to buy those so I can have a better comprehension of the lyrics. If not, I try my best to understand the bands intention by reading through their words with my poor English. In the close future, our material might be distributed more overseas, and we might have a chance to play in front of you, so I hope you'll understand that this interview is to give you a better understanding of who we are and what we have in mind to say. I really like to thank you for reading and having us on the page.
I hope you will excuse my long introduction and now start answering the questions. Our band is conducted by five members.? I am Hirotatsu, 30 years old, doing the singing & talking. Yoshi plays bass and is 24 years old (He used to live in Canada and China, so he can speak both English & Chinese. He also runs a label called oto RECORDS). We have two guitar players and one is Kenta, 23 years old (He also sings sometimes) and the other is I.D.O who is 30 years old. Yuta plays the drums and used to live in Australia, so he can speak English as well. And yeah, he's 26 years old. Feel free to contact them.
Our first show was in the end of 2004 and since then, we have done shows and supported tours for bands like Kaospilot, Daitro, Balboa, Funeral Diner, The Kickass, Thank God, XBXRX, Some Girls etc. We have released a Demo Tape and a CDep so far, looking forward to more releases soon. The band name "Killie" is a coinage made by the band itself pronounced as [kil-ai], meaning "hate" in Japanese. We spell it out by combining two English words "kill" and "lie". In Japanese literature, words often consist of several meanings and different ways to be written, even if they are pronounced the same, but in this case it means "hate". Why? You might as well think about it.
2.Most of the members come from different bands. Was there a conscious decision or purpose for starting Killie? What did you want to do different in this band?
I don't think there was anything intentional. I decided to form this band since my other band, "3cm tour," had to stop. For the past ten years I've been playing in bands, so it was natural for me to form a new one. I did select some members in the beginning, but there are other reasons why I wanted to form Killie. Because I was influenced by those political hardcore punk bands and labels from overseas, such as Dischord, Ebullition and others, I wanted to sing about the situations of our own Japanese society. I was thinking of what was the most appropriate way to express these feelings and thoughts, since I was skeptical towards Japanese hardcore or other types of bands where they were forced to sing in such customs that the scene holds, which justifies the way and what to sing even when there is no need to.
I always think that the Japanese music scene is a borrowed culture from abroad that didn't occur from any oppression of the society. This just makes me think that if those bands really wanted to stop the war, why don't they start making a difference by acting directly to the problem instead of spending money on practicing their tambourine? I believe any type of music has its own history and has been a counter-culture in a certain era, but I felt Japanese bands weren't singing or doing activities from their own perspective or from what situations they were in. This made me think about what I wanted to do in my next project and what I wanted to sing, being sure that I needed a strong message to speak and I wanted to convey my ideas, based on my own perspective, to this scene made from a borrowed culture.
In those days, I had broken up with the girl I was living with. This incident put everything together. I won't explain the details about it, since it would take days for me to write it all, but the ideas and feelings that I experienced from this incident gave me the strong feeling that the mid 90's hardcore bands I really liked were the type of music to clearly match and express everything I had in mind. Personally, I am concerned about Japanese women, since they have a direct connection with the current issues and problems of the Japanese society. Since I had a new understanding toward this after the break up with her, I decided to form a band that could present such problems of our society and make a better life for myself, by myself.
After having many talks with the members, agreeing on what we were doing musically and conceptionally, we decided to start this band representing the ideas I explained above, about the Japanese music scene and society, along with my personal experiences. Musically, I was not kind of expecting to sound like how we are today, since I wanted to mix more of my own music experiences I had through my life, not only Hardcore and Punk. I also like Dub, Reggae, Folk, Classic, Heavy Metal, Progressive Rock, Grunge, etc. Still, Ifm content with the way the band is right now. I always write my words from the perspective of being born and raised as a Japanese, even if I would be addressing any world or other issues. It doesnft make sense to have lyrics or to play such music in this country unless we do it this way. Everything is all shaped by foreign cultures, but there are still many topics and problems to be picked up here. Stereotypical minds and music are just shit.
I hate mid 90fs; it's a bunch of crap.
3.Last September, Killie did a short Japanese tour entitled, September against sexism, and also produced a zine. What were the ideas behind this tour and what kind of responses did you have.
This is a heavy topic. As I answered in the second question, originally we have been active with a certain concept. As our first step, we made a sticker with a line saying "Women Discrimination Rock'n Roll." This line was based on that terrible experience I had with my girlfriend, and also from the concern toward Japanese women I see and get fed up with through my life and from current issues. In those days, we made this statement by expressing our social ideas toward the increase of dominant positions of women. They were claiming extreme freedom to the point that men began to be discriminated against in Japan. A lot of foreigners who saw this statement gave us a strange look without understanding the true meaning of what we really wanted to claim. This is "the true equality of men and women", despite there being no explanation on the sticker.
Yoshi does all the foreign contacts, and so he received many questions and messages asking what the message is all about. He told us that we needed to explain the specific information on the statement and what our messages really mean to all the people, including foreigners, or else he would have to spend a whole bunch of time answering everyone with the same question. So we got together and had a long talk with each other about how we could explain this to everyone. We came up with the idea to write a zine of our own, featuring each one of our perspectives on sexism problems in Japan and why we put such a statement on the sticker. We added lots of content to provoke people to think about such problems in Japan.
We're not saying that we handle the sex of women carelessly. But we think that too many women in Japan are being placed in an extremely favorable position by the country, to the point that abuse such power toward men, whether consciously or unconsciously. Continuing, I think many Japanese men are feeling pressure from this and it actually leads to many sexist or social problems that this country has. For instance, Japan posses one of the biggest porno industries in the world. The country itself confirms such shitty business and women use such fields to attain money. A lot of men buy women to take revenge because of their stress from being betrayed or from being discriminated against by women. It becomes a vicious cycle. Since the extreme economy growth of Japan in the 80's to 90's, the freedom and rights of women increased drastically. We believe this was something really important and good for society itself. But, the problem was a lot of women in Japan actually didn't take it as a freedom of their rights, but actually a right to do whatever they wanted. Laws to support such activities were been created everyday and they started to abuse men by taking advantage of this. Some women started to intentionally sue men who are on the train, claiming that the man touched her breast. The man has to give her money to make it go away. Or sometimes women would tell men they will do anything for him as long as he will give her money or buy things for her, when she has no intention of doing anything. It was a big social problem and still is today.
Of course there are still many men who discriminate against women. But at the same level, there are women who discriminate against men here, and a lot of people are not looking at the other side. This problem becomes a vicious cycle, like the porno industry I explained above, and we need to claim the equality of men and women by an extreme statement, since Japanese people won't react unless the message is something shocking or excessive. We want people to think and react more for the society even if it takes risk for us.
Normally the zine would've been translated into English and distributed overseas, but we were actually asked by a person to stop handing the zine out. He claimed that there was a story that he was involved in. We eventually had to stop giving it out, even to Japanese people. Not being able to distribute the zine for free to our own people wasn't actually what made us angry; instead it was the reaction we received from our audience.
Every bad aspect and characteristic of the Japanese appeared from the distribution this zine. First of all, most of the contents included in the zine were about "The problem of Japanese discrimination between men and women", but people started to write on the internet or talk among people that we released a zine of "Support the discrimination of women". All of the things that were written on those websites were totally out of range and beyond what we wrote in the zine. It totally pissed us off. You could tell they hadn't read anything in the zine, just decided from their preconception of us.
Do you guys know "2ch"?? It's a huge internet message board in Japan featuring tons of topics where everything is written anonymously. I donft know if there is such a website in foreign countries, but in Japan, it's huge enough to influence society and to become a social problem. It has already created so many crimes and actually even created a movie out of a love story that was based on the exchange between those anonymous people. The movie was called "DENSHA OTOKO (train man)". Getting to the point, I just doubted and felt so down about these anonymous people who really canft communicate when talking face to face. They just keep on writing their ugly feelings and being involved in the sad internet while hiding their names and faces, then coming to our shows as if they are innocent. It totally represents the bad side of the Japanese character.
We got to talk with a few people and bands during the tour, giving us either positive or negative opinions. I learned many points of view that I hadnft thought about, so this was a great experience and I would like to thank those people for interacting with us. There were many people who didn't want to have a conversation with us, disliking us for no reason which made me furious. I started to write about such feelings and incidents on our website, but then those anonymous assholes started to slander our comments which made me realize that this was going nowhere. We had many talks again and again between our members, thinking of stop using the internet, but also thinking that it might deny the new generation of people to learn about us and the scene where we are still continuing our conversations up to this day.
We're always in the process of challenging, experiencing, learning and improving, but ironically, we are also still fighting against the people who come and watch our shows. The very hope we hold comes from the minority who have shown us understanding, or came to us for a talk, some even sending us letters from different prefectures, including women of course. We mean "hate" as "love".
4.Your upcoming LP is not going to be released in Japan, and is actually being kept out of the country. What is the reason for this, and how have fans of Killie reacted.
First of all, there are people writing information on anonymous message boards about this release, saying that it won't be distributed in Japan, along with stupid comments such as, "Killie wants to make their things rare as much as possible." This makes me laugh my ass off and they're a bunch of people who can't even write their name on what they say, so I have nothing much to say to those assholes.
But to those who deserve such explanations, we're releasing and distributing this outside of Japan because we want our people to act more directly with us and with the scene, since their computerized minds have eradicated the soul of action and advancement. Your Japanese characteristic of innuendo and silence is making me sick like a city cancer. We want people to think about and be critical of what is happening around them and be active. This is the greatest concern that needs to be addressed. I just can't understand why people don't ask us directly where they can catch certain information and ideas. Instead they ask questions and write stupid comments on "2ch".
We want to increase the number of people being active by limiting the distribution inside Japan. We also hope not only for this to affect Japanese people, but also for people in different countries to think about their situations through this action of ours, using it as an example. It might sound ridiculous to you that we are doing such things, but seriously, the situation going around here in Japan is that bad. Those in Japan who are waiting for this release are the victims, even ourselves. I'm really sorry for that. But we need to be thinking about what benefits the community, more than what benefits ourselves, since we think that is actually what brings pure benefits and happiness to people, not materialism.? Japanese people are too materialized. They only want to collect rare materials or sell them on internet auctions at a high cost. I know that people are going to buy this without thinking about the problems happening in this community, believing it's at peace. We also want people from different countries to read what we want to say, so that's why there is limitation in distribution. We'll release these tracks differently for Japan, so we'll ask them to wait for a while.
We actually have a lot of people from Japan and other countries asking us why we are doing such things and bringing such controversy into our scene. From my point of view, this alone makes it worth it for this release to be done outside of Japan right now. We really would like to thank Jerome from Salvation Records (France) and Momo from Flower of Carnage (France) who are releasing this LP, and also to those who have shown full respect and understanding toward us. This wouldn't be possible without you guys. Thank you.
5. It seems that Japan lacks many political/social bands, at least in the scene that Killie is in. Where does the band get inspiration for ideas, music, etc?
I believe music is what taught me most of the things throughout my life. Besides music, Ifm inspired by people listening to us, those who are watching us, people I interact with in my daily life, stupid current issues of the Japanese, news and history. I doubt we are political, since we don't consider ourselves as a hardcore band. Everything depends on how you see what is in front of you.
Reading dictionaries and talking shit with the owner of restaurant "KUMA-BOKKO". That is political enough.
6.Yoshi, you are a vegetarian living/born/raised in Japan. The last time I was in Japan I came as a vegetarian but quickly gave it up because of difficulty finding proper nutrition. I'm interested what your experiences are with this lifestyle, and how you think this lifestyle affects Japan?
Well, actually I'm a pescetarian, not a vegetarian. I consume seafood and live the natural way as the traditional Japanese did. So in this case, there are not many problems consuming the proper nutrition. I used to try to be a vegetarian in this country, being influenced by the history of Japan or the historical backgrounds of hardcore, believing in animal rights, environmentalism etc. Eventually I suffered from the reality of living in a country that consumes 5.6 million tons of meat each year, which is a huge number against our population (even though we had a religion of not consuming meat until the Meiji Revolution in 1868, when Japan started to shift their culture to the Western Style. The Oldies call this "the Slam Culture" (Respect the Oldie Punks people)). Also the paradox of believing in animal rights and living in a materialized country made my situation even hard. But actually this is not the main reason why I stopped being a vegetarian.
I became a pescetarian from an incident I had 2 years ago. One day I visited a friend of mine and his mom cooked us a meal that included meat. She didn't know that I was a vegetarian, or I should say, most Japanese don't understand such ideology. My friend was going to explain about that, but I rejected and decided to eat anyway. Some people will say that I might not be Hardcore because of this, blah, blah, blah. But I just want to tell you that I didn't want to offend or hurt his mothers' feeling or sincerity. I hate hurting people's feeling and honesty more than anything. This comes from my Japanese cultural background. Respecting the elder generation and meals are symbols of sincerity and honesty in Japan, by thanking the animal for dedicating its life.
After this incident, I decided to take the option of being a pescetarian, living the traditional Japanese lifestyle, which I can adapt to this country's situation and feel straight with my ideology. Of course, I don't want animals to be killed and consumed as a product, but realistically, I am not Superman or a God. I am just an individual in this society, who plays music, and works at a music studio as a part time job. The best I can do right now is to stay true and try and influence my close people, their family, children, lovers, and others who might be a new close person to me. Maybe I can help prevent problems that are caused by their consumption of meat. This is a positive attitude; I am not being pessimistic at all. I am just being realistic and honest here to make a certain step forward. It's harder than you can imagine, but I am trying my best in a country that has no understanding toward vegetarianism. Ifm trying to convey such an ideology to those people to make it a better place to live for us and for animals.
If being a pescetarian or a vegetarian may cause harm to the whole environment or to the people, I will immediately stop being one. It's just a consideration toward where we are living. I'm saying this from the range of my activity and possibility I have at this moment. If I become my existence becomes more effective, I think my consideration will realistically become much wider, and Ifll try to reduce these damn problems. But for now, it's all I can take and I'm trying to make a further step to become a vegetarian. I am. It's just that I can't say I will save a cow from drowning if my friend is also drowning. Just think about that. If I want to believe in a certain ideology, I don't want to believe it in an elusive cloud. I want it to be straight and something that I can believe in from the bottom of my heart, something that can benefit both humans and nature. I believe that this is the best way for me to live in Japan, to make steps toward coexistence at this moment. Of course, further steps need to be made and I am working on that. It's just that I have to make certain steps one by one in this country.
I know a lot of those fuck'n trendy Hardcore Kids will say "what thec, you ain't hardcore dude, go back and learn Earth Crisis." Ya, you might as well go back to high school and remove that "XXX" tattoo before you start going back to Kentucky Fried Chicken, asshole. I don't consider myself Hardcore and I don't give a shit about that. I don't want to be limited in such a way of thinking. I have met so many people that are too valuable to me that I can't explain it in a few words. And a lot of them aren't influenced by such music or ideology. Hardcore is done; it's already a closed book. We use it as a tool with each other to learn, discover and to encounter. Now it's time to make our own ways of thinking. I'm so sick and tired of people being confined by this idea saying "Punk and Hardcore needs to be this and that," when countries and environmental situations are totally different from one and another.
It makes me feel that those confined people are trying to feel safe and be comforted by a fixed ideology, an easy answer, with a collective of people to support them. Your minority is actually a majority people, realize that. There is no answer to life, and that is what we are fighting for right now. That's why we need to be holding our own ideas, talking with the ones who we respect, the ones we hate, making conversations, conflicts and understanding, uniting for a better ideology for each other. Of course it's not easy. It's still damn hard to be a pescetarian in Japan. But effort needs to be accomplished here. The result from our effort might not have such a positive effect, but if we don't fight this by thinking and moving, we are just disrespecting the victims of the past and what we have learnt from them. Wefd be losing the chance for progress. Start to speak your words, make conflicts, make enemies, learn from them, teach each other, hold your ideology, create and move, fight for it. It's about time for us to make our own way of living and ideology. You can call me a hypocrite or whatever you want, I don't give a shit. I call this "Killie." Why don't you start to fight for your own way of living?
7.The title of your first CDEP is, gDonft Want To Escape From The Underground, Want To Escape From The Underground, Can't Escape From The Underground.h What does this statement(s) mean to the band?
Japan is a country that has poor understanding or respect toward the culture of art, so as a 30 year old man doing a band, I frequently face various problems. Personally, I want to make a living out of our material from what we make based on the ideology of DIY, but there are still many things that have to happen before this becomes true. Tons of bands, singers, idols already exist in this country. Most of them are just shit, labeled as "Majors" and the sad truth is that a lot of independent labels follow their methods. I have a strong rebellious spirit toward these and it's not how I want to accomplish my destination. Most importantly to me, the strength of not being restricted or limited in what we do is the main reason why I like this independent scene. By existing in such a scene, I have encountered various people with understanding that have encouraged me. I have no wishes to be a Rock Star signed to a major label. I always want to talk and have drinks from the same perspective of the people who come to our shows. It's still hard to make a living out of what we make through our band, even if we will be playing? big venues every time. After all, we can't escape from the underground.
8. On the Killie website, you made a proclamation that 2 channel (2ch) users are your genemy.h What kind of a role does 2ch play in the Japanese hardcore scene (I've heard it's huge), and what's been happening recently that you would speak out against it.
I guess you know what "2ch" is from the previous answer. Personally, whatever is written by whomever on that site, I fuck'n hate them as much as finding out who they are. Ifd rather become friends with them by talking and understanding. Originally, by adding a comment toward an individual on the internet which is a space for millions of people to see, it enabled the people who wrote such comments to express their ideas toward those who are looking for such information.? The only problem for "2ch" or other similar websites is that it shouldn't be anonymous. My rage gets to the top of my head toward those people who point out a specific individual and write about them. I feel it's beyond the problem of privacy but actually a lack of human sense. By adding an anonymous comment on "2ch", one is able to write anything and won't be known, since individual information of the one is not managed by the website.
As I have written before, since "2ch" started, it has caused many social problems like people announcing suicide, people suing for privacy invasion, people bragging about killing another person, people talking about taboo topics of the business world, and people using it to bully their class or work mates, etc. Recently, we often see the name "2ch" on news and there are even television programs that use it as an entertainment product. I often think that all the problems of Japanese people can be wrapped up in "2ch".? Itfs the same for the music scene topics. Originally, it was supposed to be a source for people who want to catch information off the website through anonymous comments, but there are so many ridiculous people who just brag about personal or band stories. Most of what they write can be considered as slandering.
The point is that there are only dick heads on that website who can't say things truly to their friends or don't even have ones. Theyfre feeling lonely and thinking that they know everything, when most of it is just bullshit. Yeah, they're pretty sad people, show some mercy. That's why I always try to tell those people to contact me, so we can meet face to face and try to become friends. I don't mind about people writing if they like our band or not, it's their decision and there is nothing harmful as long as people don't look through those comments and not reply to them.
But what really makes me pissed off at these people is the result of their slandering, breaking up a scene that me and my friends and others have created together for years. Most of them are in this scene with no understanding. We are not Rock Stars and everything that is created and done is based on the spirit of DIY where DIY is not only a word used and accomplished in Hardcore music. I have met sincere people and friends through this and have been influenced by them. We are doing our best to create a scene where people who come to shows and listen to our words and music can come close to us as much as possible. But then here comes those anonymous monsters who fuck'n break everything apart by unsubstantiated gossip, which makes the scene and people confused.
I'm totally open with talking to people who come to our shows and interacting with them normally. Actually I believe I'm even polite enough. That is what it is all about to be independent, working hard to keep down the price of entrance tickets, making music and merchandise in a DIY style to offer them cheap to people, but it seems like this computerized generation needs to be taught again from the beginning of how much work it takes to do such things and how the connection of people heart to heart is important to each of us and to the scene. They don't pay attention to the incidents happening around them and what our activities mean at all. I believe the problem of buying CDs or catching information of live shows and stuff through the web has problems to do with this. I don't mind about people who like our sound, but if they dislike our activities and lyrics, they just don't have to come to our shows or buy our material.
Including all the things in this interview, I've said and conveyed everything I had in mind through our activities in Japanese to Japanese people. Yoshi and others have said that as well. But eventually we won't be able to specify every "MR. Anonymous" and the sad thing is that a lot of bands of this scene don't seem to respond to our words. Theyfre afraid that they will be slandered again through "2ch." So we came to the conclusion of not putting any specific live information on our website as a first step, so that there will be at least a small hope that people will come to us, talk to us, ask us directly about our band and scene. That was the beauty of this music scene, direct communication and activation, so we're going to be using our minds to make more crafty tricks so that those anonymous assholes won't be able to slander and break our friends and the fruit of our effort. Yeah, we're fuck'n assholes enough to rot your scheme.
We'll fight and threaten you "2ch" fucks.
9.What are the future plans for Killie?
In October, we're going to be on tour with La Quiete (Italy), Ampere (USA) and Heaven In Her Arms (Japan) here in Japan for about 2 weeks and we're really looking forward to seeing them. Till then, we're planning to get in the van for some domestic tours. Unfortunately, we have no plans to go overseas at the moment, but yeah, it'll be great to have such a chance.
In addition, there aren't underground facilities or squats to practice at like a lot of those foreign bands have, so it's really hard to continue band activities in Japan. All Japanese bands use specialty practice studios, paying $50 for 2 hours, practicing and composing songs. At venues, there are no places to sleep and they don't provide food at all, and actually we need to pay to rent the venue, which is like $1000 per night for a normal venue in Tokyo. As Yoshi has explained, vegetarianism is still a minor ideology in Japan. You can barely find such restaurants or places that provide such food, so if you are planning to tour Japan, you must consider these aspects or you are going to have a hard time with food and money especially. But if you come to Japan, please contact us, we're always welcome to meet you.
For releases, as we said, we are going to be releasing a one-sided 12" from two French labels called Salvation Records and Flower Of Carnage. We are working on a full length and hopefully releasing it around spring of 2008 from my label oto RECORDS. Aside from sound materials, we'll continue to write zines like the "September Against Sexism" and hopefully translate it into different languages for everyone to read.
First of all, I would like to say thank you or actually say sorry to Yoshi for the tough work on translating all this crap, and thanks to Ryan, Momo and Jerome for giving us such an opportunity. I hope this interview will interest you and give you some understanding toward the situation of Japan or about our band and hopefully you can come to Japan or why not call us to your country. We're looking forward to seeing you soon. Keep the Rock Rolling so your threat keeps spinning, you'll reach there.
Some of our words might be hard to understand or even offensive to you. But as Hirotatsu said, we are just a Japanese band that is active in Japan and only knows Japan. We are here to share our ideas that we have experienced in our country and hopefully you can compare it with what is going around your country. Sometimes people think they are justified, the best, smartest, but they aren't and we're not as well. We're in the process of learning from what we have seen and what we haven't. Your chair is here and the door is there. You decide whether you want to sit on your smart ass or open that door to encounter your neighbor. We'll be waiting in the hall way. If you don't try to understand what we're saying, we'll hate you, say it again, and make our move again. If you hate what we're saying, please do, we don't give a shit. That's why I'm here slamming the four string over your head. We're your disagreement medicine people, drink it.
Note: This interview was once submitted for the 2nd issue of GIVE ME BACK,
but was denied for its unappropriate context and being said that it was not
interesting, where at least we believe it has something to be said than
some band saying in the 1st issue "Yeah, we love Mogwai". We don't want to
whine about that this interview was denied or whatever, but actually the
situation of zines we see these days like GIVE ME BACK is becoming a bunch
of context that has been repeated for years and becoming as same as the
major music industry.
Alot of these zines talk about innovation and rebellious action to be
supported, but when it comes to theirselves being rejected, they just don't
have the guts to recieve everything. And yeah, that makes you so Hardcore
boys & girls, keep reading the same old textbook.You mind as well activate
your brains to think about changing things. It's just a consequence of
people being cofortable in a minority community being supported by a
majority opinion. It has no difference between the major music industry.
Afterall, discovering such context and relying to this "one way" idea of
Hardcore needs to be bla bla bla for years, we didn't want to be on such
closed mind zine, so the conclusion was good and well accpeted. We want
more of our friends to be involved, so we should've done it this way in the
first place. How dumb we were. But you know, at least they can reply to us
why they didn't accept it where they are actually asking for people to hand
in interviews, photos, and columns. We wouldn't have known of the reason if
we didn't ask. Does that mean there's no responsibility if they are not
interested of the material? GIVE ME A BREAK. If they talk about being
straight in life, fuck'n do what you are talking about. Manipulation and
conspiracy is only seen in their talking. Live with sincerity.
Of course, we're not a popular band that the world might not be interested
at all, where GIVE ME BACK actually replied to us that "We don't know or
even heard of your band before, how can we decide on that?" which I totally
understand what they mean where I personally run a label and can't release
everything that has been asked for. But to our point of view, isn't that
why we need to have different ideas and bands from other countries, sharing
various cultural backgrounds, country situation and ideas, instead of
having a bunch of shit American bands talking how fuck'n NO.1 and cool they
are. I hardly see any Asian bands on these zines but only the big ones who
are actually not even independent anymore and only have boring answers about
how hard it was to record their shitty album. Are you telling us that is more
worth putting on to your zine? Suck my middle finger for that assholes.
We believe there are roles in this community to be handled and especially
for these zines that are read most amongst the world, they can give alot of
collaboration and help to alot of bands that are hard to be known from a
lot of prejudice that they suck or have no ideas, which is especially seen
toward Asian bands by Western countries. As for myself running otoRECORDS,
I might not be able to release every single material that is asked for, but
I distribute things as much as possible in Japan to help their music and
ideas to be known to our people. It's ALOT of work, HELL of work, but even
if it doesn't bring in personal money, I do it. Not only that I want to,
but I also believe that it's my role to do such thing from continuing a
label, contacting many labels and bands that not many people can do in this
If you are from a Western country, you might find our words as whining or
just wanting to be on a big zine or whatever, but that's not the point.
Being active in an Asian country and helping them out, I find it really
hard for even the true bands that have great music and ideas to be spread
are facing many walls and sometimes we need collaboration with a broader
world. There are tons of Asian bands that are much better and have things
to say where they are living in a real world facing true problems not like
complaining that their aircondition doesn't work. In these meanings, I
really respect Jerome, Momo, Ryan and alot of other people who try to
support such movements of these countries.
Even if those people writing such zine will deny, we can't help to think
that this incident brought us a thought that these major independent zines
just want to have as much attention and reputition by featuring big bands.
If this scene is a community, why don't we start be like one instead of
looking down on what they "think" there is nothing to be said. Yeah, if
there is something good to be quoted in these zines, as Kent has said in
his last letter in the final issue of HeartAttack, if you don't like it, do
it yourself. Don't rely on people for that. I truely believe this and
realized it again as well and that's what we are going to fight back for
with the ones we believe. Frankly speaking, it was pretty shocking to hear
such words from a zine that I have been reading for years, though it was
getting boring and it seems like it's continuing the same way, but also it
made us discover the situation and how they really act and think today, to
discover who we to be make innovations for. How ironic.
We will continue to support everyone of you who have the real passion and
ideas. It doesn't matter if you are big or not, Hardcore or not, which
country you are from. We wish and hope the best for you guys to succeed in
making your movements. We are here to support. We don't want majority, we
want quality and sincerity. And we are the ones who can do it.
Disaggreement is power.
Hate is our love people.
To GIVE ME BACK:
Yeah, we'll fuck'n give you back what you are missing shit heads.
You might think we're small, too small that you won't be able to see from
your top position looking down, but we'll give you a note:
Our "Katana" threat is getting ready for shred.
Samurais will do anything for sincerity.
Yoshi / killie