Interview with girugamesh before J-Shock

interview - 18.07.2007 13:00

A day before the J-shock event in Germany, we had the opportunity to have an interview with the members of girugamesh.

After performing at the JRock Revolution festival in Los Angeles, girugamesh's performance in Germany at the J-Shock Festival was their second overseas performance, and their first one in Europe.

The day before the event was to take place, we held an interview with the four young men of girugamesh.

How are you doing and how was your flight?

shuU: It was a very exhausting trip, but we want to give this part of it some power right now!

Please introduce your band to our readers, who may not know you yet.

shuU: We are girugamesh, a very chaotic band. In Japan our fans can climb up on the stage and jump off again.

Яyo, was the German beer as good as it promised?

Яyo: Yes, German beer is very good.

Would you consider releasing acoustic recordings of your songs? For example Fujin Ai, since that song was used in one of your videos and sounded really promising.

shuU: We haven't thought about that.... The idea is really good though. It's definitely something that we'll consider.

You've done a cover of the song Glamorous Sky by Mika Nakashima. Are you fans of Nakashima or the Nana series?

shuU: Yes, we all like Mika Nakashima and the manga Nana very much. We also watched the movie. You know Nana?

Yes, Nana is very loved over here

shuU: Then we will play Glamorous Sky the next time when we're in Germany!

What kind of music do you listen to? What influences you?

Satoshi: I like to listen to pop with female singers, such as Mika Nakashima, Kou Shibasaki, Anna Tsuchiya, etc. I like these melodic type of songs, but I also like harder music.
shuU: I really like thee michelle gun elephant and Shiina Ringo. We're also influenced by bands like Linkin Park, Limp Bizkit and KoRn.

Around what age did you start to play instruments or sing?

Satoshi: I began to do karaoke when I was around eight or nine years old.
shuU: I started playing guitar when I was sixteen and bass when I was thirteen.
Яyo: When I was thirteen, I was in an X-Japan cover band and that's when I started drumming. To cover X-Japan was quite hard, but we liked doing it.

The number of girugamesh fans has increased a lot worldwide, though your band has only been around since 2003. How do you deal with this kind of success?

shuU: We don't think that we're that successful, and it's not something that we really think about. Of course, we like it that a lot of people like our music and that we can reach them with our music, but we really just want to have fun. That's why we all got involved with music in the first place.

Through the internet you became known world wide. Are streaming videos on YouTube a problem for you? Do you think some people may not buy your CDs because of it?

shuU: Well, there are two sides to it. At one side, it's good that we're getting new fans this way, but then we don't sell that many CDs....
Яyo: Though, without the internet, we also don't have these fans that might buy CDs. So that's good too!
shuU: Yeah, you're right.
(Satoshi nods in agreement)

You are all quite young and started with girugamesh in your teens, so we would like to know if you played in any band before girugamesh, though we already know that Satoshi played in Benom.

shuU: girugamesh is my first band that's releasing CDs. Before this, I'd only jammed at school with schoolmates.
Яyo: I was in a cover band, but girugamesh came after that.

How did you get to know each other and decide to start a band?

shuU: Nii and I were schoolmates for a long time and we decided to create our own band.
Satoshi: Яyo and I were friends before, but we didn't have a band together. Through Яyo, I became a member of girugamesh.

How do you see your fellow band mates?

shuU: Яyo is the main-composer and Satoshi writes the lyrics. Nii also composes and in addition to that, he encourages and helps every one of us.
Satoshi: When Nii has a bad mood, the whole band becomes the same.
shuU: Your turn, Nii!
Nii: shuU is very reliable. He has a very clear division between working time and free time.
shuU: Ah well, Яyo is very talented and very curious. He loves to try new things.
Яyo: Satoshi is the biggest jerk that I've ever seen. (laughs) Though in a totally positive way! (laughter)

Satoshi, your lyrics are very dark. They speak about pain, imprisonment, and war. When one reads your blog, you seem to have a rather happy nature. So how do you end up with these lyrics?

Satoshi: Actually I'm a very cheerful person, but my lyrics are about my inner feelings. That's simply what I want to sing about; when I feel stressed or angry. I often feel like this. So that's how these frustrated lyrics are developed. When I'm in a good mood, there will of course be also positive lyrics. But I must say that on stage and backstage, I'm often a completely different person.

What was it like for you to meet Yoshiki at the JRock Revolution event in the USA and how did you get this opportunity?

Яyo: Yoshiki is a big role model for me and I was totally excited. I was allowed to shake his hand and I then didn't wash my hand for days (laughs). I've always wanted to be like Yoshiki; he's a person I really look up to and no one will be able to overshadow him.
shuU: On the day that Yoshiki invited us, we had a performance. His call was a big surprise. We got to know him during a party and then immediately confirmed. Every opportunity, no matter how small it is, brings a chance to be heard and to spread our music throughout the world.

What would you be today, if you hadn't chosen to be a musician?

Satoshi: I'd definitely be homeless. Without music, I can't live. It's everything for me.
Nii: A normal salary man.... Office work even.
shuU: I think an attorney.
Яyo: I'd be the leader of a Japanese motorbike mafia! (laughter)
Satoshi: What??
Яyo: No, actually I would like, as a musician, to influence young musicians like us. So I'd like to be a producer around 36, who promotes young bands and artists.

Which criteria will you use for the young talents?

Яyo: I'll take everything that sounds cool! (laughs)

How do you write your band name precisely? There are several versions and your fans seem to be confused.

shuU: We write it either in katakana or “girugamesh”. The version with the two dots on the 'a' is used as a logo on CDs and merchandise; that's only a design.

Please give a message to your fans.

Satoshi: There's the language problem, but I'm sure that the fans understand our feelings and feel the same way we do.
Nii: We will continue to create good music, so keep an eye on us!
shuU: You can look forward to new releases! Be excited.
Яyo: We're going to continue to make music and do performances but to do it, we're going to need your support!


JaME thanks Gan-Shin, Danger Crue Inc. and the band for the interview.
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J-SHOCK 2007

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