MusicVoice Interview [Page 1 of 1]

MusicVoice Interview
Posted on Wed Oct 14, 2015 1:49 pm

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thoseguiltyeyes

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SCANDAL's transformation; the confidence they've grasped before their 10th anniversary
What their world tour has yielded



SCANDAL, who completed their first world tour in May, released their 22nd single 「Sisters」 on 9/9. The wishes of the girls who talked about how 「We want to incorporate Western elements」 went just as expected, continuing from with their previous work 「Stamp!」 and finishing with a sound that makes you feel a Western taste. They were touched by the winds as well as smells of foreign countries on their world tour. What did the girls feel and obtain on this tour? And, how do they see their band's image from here on? Their documentary film 『SCANDAL ”Documentary film「HELLO WORLD」”』 that covers their 10 performances in 8 countries abroad will be out from 10/17. We asked SCANDAL, who will celebrate their 10th anniversary next year, and tried closing in on the essence of their natural aspects and them as musicians.




Our sense of purpose certainly was born

――Were the points or changes that you noticed after completing your first world tour?

HARUNA: 「We've played lives overseas many times so far. However, this was our first time performing lives overseas with the inscription of 「world tour」. Because there are fans who are waiting for us in all kinds of countries, we went overseas with feelings of simply wanting play lives in many countries. As we were touring, we came to understand the meanings of 「Why are we playing lives overseas?」 and 「Why has our girl band continued on for so long?」.」

RINA: 「We were able to truly find out our reasons for going abroad, and I think something like our sense of purpose certainly was born. Girl bands are becoming a part of Japanese pop culture, and I've come to think that I'd like them to spread out into the world. In Japan as well there are still just a few girl bands compared to guy bands. I think there are parts that haven't completely turned into pop yet, so my feelings of wanting this to be an even more popular genre have grown stronger.」

MAMI: 「It gave me confidence as a songwriter. On 『HELLO WORLD』, the album we carried on this tour, we have a song called 「Departure」. In this song there are lyrics that sing about feelings of when you see the four seasons in Japan as well as a Japanese-sounding melody; I've been told that that's a very catchy aspect. To have people overseas listen to this song live as well made me more excited than I imagined. We too didn't really anticipate that. Because 「Departure」 reached number one on the "Please tell us your favorite SCANDAL song" survey of NHK WORLD's J-MELO program, we put it on the set list in a place where we'd be happy to have them listen to it and performed it. The cheers were seriously awesome and it simply surprised me. Although I gathered info beforehand, I was really surprised when we went. My thoughts of accepting that and how we must make sure to send our songs overseas were further deepened.」

TOMOMI: 「We had been going overseas every year since our indie days, but back then we wore costumes called seifuku (school uniforms) and were doing theme songs for anime. We were holding weapons of that Japanese culture and facing going overseas. But, this time, we got rid of those weapons and went on tour for our album titled 『HELLO WORLD』. Because this album came out very naturally from within us, it feels like it's closer to our prime, that it's something found within each day, and that we asked people overseas to listen to and accept it. We became very confident with that meaning.」

――How do the reactions in Japan and the reactions overseas differ on tour?

HARUNA: 「Rather than thinking of it as 'Japan' and 'overseas,' each country's culture is different and their moods are also different, so those countries have their own live experience.」

――What countries were particularly impressive?

HARUNA: 「One that was very passionate was Mexico. It was our first time playing a live in Mexico, but during the show and breaks, the crowd would be shouting out 「Oーle oーle ole ole♪」 in a way like they were watching a soccer game. The audience watched our live in that kind of mood; it was a very warm country.」

――Speaking of Mexico, I hear MAMI's birthday was celebrated there.

MAMI: 「An audience of over 2,000 came and I was congratulated on stage. Mexico's birthday song is called 「Las Mañanitas」 and is 4 minutes long and has 3 parts. With 「Happy Birthday To You」, when your name is said and at the end you go 「Wah!」, you get excited. But, with the Mexican birthday song, I had no idea at all when to blow out the candles. The staff prepared a cake for me, but when I thought 「Maybe now?」 and blew out the candles, no one cheered…. I probably got the timing wrong (laughs). Everyone was singing so passionately that they must not have seen me in the first place (laughs). It was a moment where I felt very lonely among 2,000 people. Unless you aim for it yourself, the opportunity to go to Mexico on your birthday is pretty rare, so I was simply happy (laughs).」

――Were there any other impressive countries?

RINA: 「I do this in Japan too, but I'm hooked on going vintage shops to buy clothes and interior goods, and I went to vintage shops in London and bought quite a bit of secondhand clothing. It made me really happy that the employee there knew about us, said 「Let's take a picture together」, and 「I'm going to share this with my friends on Facebook」. When I went up to the register carrying clothes that perfectly matched my size, they told me, 「Those are kids' sizes」. It seems like there are many kids in London who are the same stature as me, so I think kids' sizes are perfect for me (laughs).」

TOMOMI: 「It's Singapore for me. We played an outdoor live in Singapore and I experienced the strongest squall I ever have in my life. The rain was crazy. We have a song called 「Rainy」 and we decided while on our Japan tour 「If it rains, we'll perform it」, but it didn't really rain. So, we were rewarded in Singapore to finally be able to play it (laughs). It normally rains often at events and we're aware that we're an 「ame band (rain band)」. It just so happened that we made a song called 「Rainy」, but, in making the song, the rain has all but stopped. I'm glad that we could do a warm arrangement in Singapore (laughs). 」


We wanted to put in elements of Western music

――When did you make 「Sisters」, which released on 9/9?

MAMI: 「We made that during the same time as 「Stamp!」 (released 7/22 of this year) while we were touring in Japan.」

――It wasn't written while you were overseas, then.

HARUNA: 「Because we were really relaxed touring around Japan, we made them with feelings of 「We're going overseas after this」.」

――When I listened to it, I thought it could have been a song that was written after the tour ended.

MAMI: 「As for taste, I wanted to put in elements of Western music. It was to be a song that would be released after the world tour, and I made it wanting to include the atmosphere of touring.」

――For 「Sisters」's production process, did you start with music first?

RINA: 「The lyrics were first. Since I wrote it with the mindset of 「We're going overseas to play lives after this」 while touring around Japan, I shut away the atmosphere we had after the world tour and during the overseas performances. I love watching movies, and I've been hooked on watching 1960s European movies lately. There's one called 「Daisies」, which was released in 1966 in Czechoslovakia, and it's about two sisters living their lives while freely doing crazy things. The world at that time was in the middle of the Cold War. This work features happy, nonsensical content, but at that time it was a controversial work that was banned in Czechoslovakia. However, the strength and power of showing a movie like this in that kind of era is very impressive. I again learned that being free means having a tremendous energy, and I felt that living freely means fighting back against all sorts of things. Compared to those days our choices have expanded, womens' positions have changed, and it's now an era in which one can choose how to live their life. On the other hand, we don't completely take advantage of many things. I was able to write the lyrics comparatively smoothly, with the impetus of wanting to write lyrics that can release hearts that can be free.」

――Did you explain the background when you passed the lyrics over to MAMI?

RINA: 「I did explain it. It started with, 「Isn't it awesome that a movie made during the Cold War has this message!」, and I conveyed, 「I think we should sing this kind of song next」 with an e-mail to MAMI. I sent over the lyrics with 「I'm leaving the melody up to you」. After that, we adjusted while monitoring it.」

――「LIFE IS A JOURNEY」, the second song on the single, has lyrics and music by TOMOMI. Was this song written while on tour?

TOMOMI: 「It was finished after the tour. It had been a demo for quite a while before that. I got up to the bridge and submitted it to everyone, thinking that the current bridge was the chorus. But, the members told me 「There's no chorus」, and I left it alone as it was. The words 「LIFE IS A JOURNEY」 somehow came to mind as we were on our world tour. I thought I might be able to attach it to a song, and it was completed after we returned home.」

――This song has an interesting composition. Was it arranged like this from the demo stage?

TOMOMI: 「It's had the same tempo from the demo stage. We talked about 「We want it to be kind of unfinished」. We all went into the studio and, while playing sounds, we joked around, saying 「I wonder what it'd be like if we tried something punk-ish」. We recorded it while messing about.」

――I was betrayed--in a good way--by the sole up-tempo chorus. Is there a deeper intention to this composition?

TOMOMI: 「Not at all. It's just a jest, the song called 「LIFE IS A JOURNEY」. A journey song, or should I say the ups and downs that we were able to express with sound, was a postscript (laughs).」

――The jacket for 「Sisters」 was made in collaboration with the fashion magazine 「NYLON JAPAN」. How did the collab come about?

HARUNA: 「「NYLON JAPAN 」 is a magazine that the 4 of us really like and check out every month. With 「Sisters」, we thought that it'd be great if this song could also reach many girls who love fashion. We asked them with the interest of 「What about doing the artwork together with a magazine?」. For our artist photo we chose clothes that are practically the same as what we normally wear. It has turned into an artwork that fascinates the natural us.」

http://www.musicvoice.jp/news/20151014032272/

#front-page

Since the interview is so long, I'll be splitting it up into 3 parts. This was part 1/3.


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2011.07.03 SCANDAL @ AM2 -Anaheim, CA 2012.03.28 SCANDAL vs BUDOKAN @武道館 2012.11.03+04 SCANDAL HALL TOUR 2012 @愛知 2012.11.10 SCANDAL @ Happy MUSIC Live 2012 2013.03.03 SCANDAL OSAKA-JO HALL 2013 @大阪城ホール 2014.06.01 Honolulu Ekiden & Music 2014 2014.06.02 SCANDAL Fan Meeting 2015.04.25 SCANDAL WORLD TOUR 2015「HELLO WORLD」 -Paris, FR 2015.04.26「HW」-London, UK 2015.04.30「HW」-Essen, GER 2015.05.15「HW」-Chicago, IL 2015.05.20「HW」-Mexico City, MEX 2015.05.22「HW」-Los Angeles, CA 2015.05.23「HW」-Anaheim, CA 2016.01.12+13 SCANDAL ARENA TOUR『PERFECT WORLD』@武道館2016.05.21 Welcome Fan Meeting 2016.05.22 SCANDAL @ Honolulu Ekiden & Music 2016 2016.05.23 Farewell Fan Meeting 2016.08.21 SCANDAL 10th ANNIVERSARY FESTIVAL @泉大津フェニックス 2017.07.14+15+17 SCANDAL's 47 Prefecture Tour
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Re: MusicVoice Interview
Posted on Sun Oct 18, 2015 9:42 pm

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winchesterkami

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Great and interesting interview. Thanks you for the work Nice One


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