MUCC back in Europe

interview - 25.05.2006 13:00

Interview with MUCC in Paris at the time of their European tour.

On a rainy day, the interviewers had a meeting with MUCC in their hotel.

First of all, hello to everyone. Some fans think that 6 is a synthesis of all your works, do you feel the same way?
Miya: In fact, 6 is more like a B-side of Houyoku.

Did travelling overseas influence your music?
Miya: There are a lot of things that we didn’t know before we came to Europe. It taught us a lot, but also opened our eyes. Consequently, we made a lot of progress.

The regular sleeve of 6 is a parody of your poster for your first concert at the Budôkan. Is this a kind of advertisement or was it meant as a joke?
Tatsuro: 6 is an album that is really different from our other works, so we searched for a specific design for it that would be different from what we’ve previously used. Since we were going to play at the Budôkan at the same time, we were inspired by the photo that was used for the poster. With a “wink”, the cover would help emphasize the originality of the album.

Precisely, the Budôkan is a very well known concert hall, even legendary! How do you feel about this?
Tatsuro: We had previously performed at events held in the hall, but having the opportunity to play to a oneman show there, when we had already seen other famous bands perform there, really hit us. We had pictured this in our head since we started the band, even though it wasn't a finality to us, it's a really big time for us.

We hope one day you can perform at the Tokyo Dome!
(the band laughs)

For the concert at the Budôkan, will it be seated or standing?
Tatsuro: All seated.

In the beginning of your career, you paid more attention to your image. Why did that change?
(long silence, Tatsuro thought for a while)
Tatsuro: Hmm... Before our costumes use to be very important and we put a lot of effort into them, but our look has evolved in the same way as our music. Now, the creation of our music is more important, so we decided to make our style simpler with less make-up.

You have a lot of fun during your photo sessions, is it the same in your life?
Tatsuro: When we don't work, we have a lot of fun, but at work, we are serious.

On your official homepage, we saw a short movie where we were able to see your acting talent. Will you start a career in drama? (Redaction quote: a video showing SATOchi going in a store to buy a CD where the seller is played by one of the other band members.)
(the band members laughed)
Tatsuro: The person who made the cardboard Budôkan is the girl in the background.
(They show the interviewers a Japanese girl in a corner of the room).

You have talent though!
(They all shook their head, saying "no")

Why do you perform live with bare feet?
Tatsuro: First of all, it's easier to move on stage without shoes. In the beginning, I wore boots that fit my costume, but because of the pressure, stress, and moves it wasn’t really convenient. So I finally just removed them. In fact, I would prefer to wear sneakers, but we’re really not a band that wears sneakers, so instead we perform bare foot.

However, there are bands like Nirvana, grunge bands, who have similar music themes as you, and they wear jeans and sneakers.
Tatsuro: Do you see us like Nirvana?
No, not really.
(Redaction quote: at the concert, YUKKE was wearing a T-shirt with a big "GRUNGE" written on it...)

What did you think of the event at Klub in Paris, two days ago ?
Tatsuro: It was very nice, the cosplay was very interesting.

What do you think of fans who live on the other side of the world and cosplay your earlier outfits?
Tatsuro: Oh, it was exciting, I asked myself "Hmmm... but where do they find their inspiration and the pictures?!"

According to Otakon’s (a convention in the USA) homepage, you're going to play in the United-States. How do you feel about this?
Tatsuro: Yes, we're going there this summer. Actually, we don’t know what to expect, but we’ll see once we’re there. We already have experience playing in Europe, though we will compare it differently from our first concerts in Europe. We’re going there and we’ll just see what happens!

Is there any other country where you would like to play or meet some artists that you like, such as The Rasmus from Finland ?
Tatsuro: Eventually, we would like to go to Finland. In Japan, we played with The Rasmus and we talked about the possibility of having concerts with them in Europe.

Is there any other country where you would like to go?
Tatsuro: England, Korea...
SATOchi: North Pole
With polar bears and seals?
SATOchi: I'd like to eat seal.
(everybody burst in laughter)

Is there any difference between the public from Europe and Japan?
Tatsuro: It's always very different.

Even between European countries?
Tatsuro: Yes, there are differences between Germany and France, and even in France, between Paris and the rest of the country.

And what did you think of your French tour?
Tatsuro: It was crazy! The people were super hot. We asked ourselves why no other Japanese band went to the south (of France). They really are dumb for not going.
(everyone laughs)

Is there anything you always do before going on stage?
Tatsuro: We stretch and warm up.

Why did you make a cover album ?
Tatsuro: Since we starting having concerts, we were always playing a cover song. And with time, since we had a new cover song each time, we ended up having about thirty different songs. We always wanted to release a cover album, but never had much time for it. And now we have the time, but distributing such an album is tricky and takes time. So for the first time, it will be offered to people going to the Budôkan concert.

You’ve released a lot of stuff recently and had a lot of concerts. Are you going to continue to surprise us for the next half of 2006, or do you plan to rest?
Tatsuro: No, there will be no break.

None of the Japanese bands have a fanclub in Europe despite the fact that they have concerts here. What are your thoughts about that and do you plan to open one?
Tatsuro: I think that if a fanclub is necessary, why not? But if a band hasn’t had one yet, then maybe it’s because they don’t know if it’s necessary or not. Since we’re far away and there’s the language barrier, I think it would be hard to manage. We couldn’t offer as many things as we do the Japanese fans, but if any MUCC fan plans to open a society to manage a fanclub and is ready to deal with it, then don’t hesitate to introduce this person to us.
A lot of people would be happy to do it, but we don’t know who would be able to.
Tatsuro: Even in Japan it's difficult... (the band laughs)
Yes, because it's very convenient to have concert tickets when we go to Japan. Especially if it’s only for a small amount of people but that's very useful.
Tatsuro: We would be happy to, do you want to take care of it ?
Well, why not ... (everybody laugh). Bands are coming to Europe but there are also people going to Japan as well, it's not easy to find concert tickets if you don't know someone living there.
Tatsuro: It would be easier to give information... Well, we will have a meeting tonight!

That's funny you're proposing this to her, since she's a new MUCC fan. She used to dislike Tatsuro's voice, but with this album, her opinion changed. (Female interviewer’s face turned red on the spot and everybody laughs). People like or dislike Tatsuro's voice, that's often the main reason why people like or dislike the band.
Tatsuro: There was a singer who’s voice I disliked, but with time I started to like it. I think that I disliked the singer’s voice because I had interest for that voice and at some point it’s possible to switch from “I don’t like it” to “I like it”. At the same time, you can be indifferent to it. I understand where she’s coming from.

Tatsuro, how can you have such emotion with your voice, did you suffer a lot in the past?
Tatsuro: Last year, because of the language barrier, I realized that I should put more feeling in my songs. If my lyrics are sad, I have to put this feeling in my voice cause lyrics are not enough. So in the past year, I worked on it and am happy with the result.

I think that in songs such as daikirai, you already put a lot of emotion.
Tatsuro: Merci ("thank you" in French).

Are you ready for an even bigger tour in France next time?
Miya: If we can have a concert each time we come and go to even more places, we’ll definitely look forward to it!

See you next year then!
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