Just after their Halloween celebrations, the four monsters from Grave Town discuss their second full album and their unique aesthetic.
Hailing from Grave Town, Leetspeak monsters is a gothic hard rock quartet, consisting of four monsters: cemetery guide D13 on vocals and rapping, Frankenstein's monster Yo’shmeer on guitar and backing vocals, vampire prince Euskyss on
bass, and werewolf DieWolf on drums. Together, they create music with a gothic aesthetic that seems to have popped right out of a dark fantasy movie, and a unique musicality that incorporates theatrical elements inspired by musicals and films.
Leetspeak monsters released their second full-length album Monsters Theater II on October 9th. Shortly after the band finished up a series of special Halloween shows, JaME had the chance to interview them about their latest works, their inspiration and their feelings about the spooky holiday.
How is Monster’s Theater II different from your first Monster’s Theater album?
D13: I increased the Japanese lyrics, and I challenged myself to explore a wider range of music genres.
Yo'shmeer: The first album carried our attitudes from the past. This album is the current Leetspeak monsters.
Euskyss: The first was like a “best album” of what we had achieved up to that point, and all the songs were connected to the direction our band was going in at the time. This new album is a representation of how we’ve grown and
where we’re going now.
DieWolf: I think this album has a lot more variety than the last one -- Ooooon!!!!!
Why did you include your first single Monster’s Party on Monster’s Theater II?
D13: That was a decision made by all the members. We discussed it a lot.
Yo'shmeer: Even though we’d released that single in the past, we still feel it’s important to us, so we wanted to make sure everyone could hear it again.
Euskyss: We used the songs Monster's Party and 13th Friday night to get us started, and that’s how we found the direction for our new recordings.
What is the concept behind your music video for Gothic?
D13: When I started working on the lead song, Gothic, I wanted to find a simple title that could have a far-reaching meaning. For the music video, I worked with the director on the story and visuals to bring out the power of the song.
Euskyss: The main character of the music video is a museum guard, who originally wanted to live as a dancer, but works as a guard to live. However, in this story, by encountering the monsters lurking in the dark, his spirit becomes dyed in a “strong black” that cannot be affected by others, and it restores his original purpose and inspiration. The video turned out different from what I imagined it would be, but I think it’s really interesting.
Where was the Gothic video filmed, and why did you choose that location?
D13: The locations were recommended by the director, and we shot this in Saga and Yamaguchi.
Euskyss: The director searched really hard for locations that would match our view of Gothic and I think he found the perfect places. Those two locations – Yamaguchi Prefectural Museum and Arita Porcelain Park in Saga Prefecture – were visually fascinating.
DieWolf: The shooting location was very large -- Ooooon!!!!! Because… I don’t know… Ooooon!!!!!
What can you tell us about your latest single, 13th Friday night?
D13: It's a party tune to make everyone merry. I wanted to write a song with a strong dance beat.
Yo'shmeer: I seem to recall that there used to be a disco culture in Japan a long time ago… They’re called “clubs” now, right? I wanted to create a song that brought back that feeling. It’s very exciting to play.
Euskyss: We wanted to make a dance number so that we could dance with the audience, and we created this song just for that. The concept is that you somehow lost your way on Friday the 13th and ended up in a mysterious world with monsters having a great party.
DieWolf: A disco song that everyone can enjoy -- Ooooon!!!! Let's spin our towels -- Ooooon!!!!
Your music and lyrics use many fantasy themes. What books or films inspire your creativity?
D13: I’ve been reading picture books from all over the world since childhood, so my imagination has always been stirred by this kind of thing. I love Tim Burton and composer Danny Elfman.
You just finished a series of Halloween shows. What does Halloween mean to you?
D13: Of course it’s a special day, but we feel like we’re having a Halloween party every day.
Yo'shmeer: Halloween is not a special day for me because I do Halloween every day.
Euskyss: I think it’s an event that can be enjoyed by both adults and children. Originally, Halloween is the day when the real world and the ghost world are connected in Celtic culture. It's a great day for all of us in Grave Town!
DieWolf: I think it’s a time when everyone can enjoy themselves even more – Ooooon!!!!
JaME would like to thank Resonance Media, GLK MUSIC and Leetspeak monsters for this interview opportunity.