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Posted Fri Jan 31, 2020 8:00 am



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We are ready to face music with all of our humanity and frankness

We want to connect to our music all the good and bad things we feel as we live our lives

SCANDAL, who has established itself as Japan's leading all-girl band, started their private record label "her" a year ago. They have completed Kiss from the darkness, their first new album on the label. By breaking down the rules and methodologies that had bound themselves up to now, they now are presenting a vivid world view containing both light and darkness.

―I felt that this album is chock-full of SCANDAL's freedom and strength obtained after establishing "her," and a positive energy unique to women.

MAMI: Thank you very much. It became a piece a work that's jam-packed with everything that happened with us last year. We feel quite accomplished and satisfied, and we were also able to actually experience a good sense of nervousness and weariness. Before, we had been trying not to really talk about being tired—rather, we thought it wasn't like us to say something like that. However, since we were able to do away with that by launching "her," we were able to show all of our true colors.

RINA: We started "her" to be able to always face music with new feelings, and also so that we're able to play music for a long time while having fun. By creating "her," we were able to once again share our awareness of playing cool music while enjoying being women, as well as gain more freedom with our songwriting. We can now try out all kinds of sounds experimentally. "Saishuuheiki, Kimi," for example.

―That song is awesome.

RINA: Glad to hear it (laughs)! It encourages us when our team tells us things like, "This song is great! Let's release it!" This past year we've realized the many positive effects of launching our own label.

MAMI: About "Saishuuheiki, Kimi," guys from bands in particular often tell us they think it's a cool song. It also really makes us happy that there are many comments from people other than Japanese and English-speaking countries in the comment section of the video on YouTube as well.

―How about the entire album?

TOMOMI: I think we've put together songs that'll widen the range of staple songs for our live shows. There are surprisingly very few songs like "Saishuuheiki, Kimi" that can change the scene with a new image, "Tonight" has a new sound sensation, etc. This album is all about songs that we can take different approaches with live. It's now more fun to put together setlists.

―Something unique to this work is the many producers who worked on it. Among those, I was surprised that SASUKE produced "Tonight."

MAMI: For "Tonight," we had already made a demo that contained all of our band sounds. We were okay with keeping the arrangement as-is, but we wanted to do something new. We thought, "What about asking a trackmaker to do what we've asked an arranger to do up until now?" That's when SASUKE's name came up. When we had him listen to our band demo, he told us, "This is already complete" (laughs), but we ignored our arrangement and sent him an offer to give it a SASUKE-like sound.

RINA: It made us happy that he did such a good job and that he really changed the song. Since this was SASUKE's first time working with a band, it was great that he had no preconceived notions. It felt fresh for all of us.

TOMOMI: The first arrangement we did was really cool too, but the arrangement had no live instruments in it and we weren't sure how we would play it live (laughs). So, in the end, we settled with the current sound.

―"NEON TOWN ESCAPE," the song with lyrics and music by HARUNA, was arranged by Chiaki Sato.

HARUNA: Chiaki and I have been good friends for about two years now. When we went out to eat in early 2019, we talked about how we wanted to write songs that year. Since I was like, "We made a promise, so I'll do my best!", I started writing it. I decided to go with a 90s-like sound. I made the demo myself, had the other members listen to it, and we all made a demo together. When I was wondering what to do with the arrangement, I remembered that it was Chiaki who made the promise at the beginning of the year, and that she herself is playing songs that sound 90s-like. I thought it'd be interesting to do this together and then spoke to her about it.

―Including acoustic instruments like the trumpet and the saxophone was also something fresh for you.

HARUNA: It instantly makes it super 90s-like. I also like the feel of it fading out. I got to challenge myself with this song and got to write a song I had wanted to, precisely because it was before we decided on the album's theme.

―"Laundry Laundry," the song with lyrics and music by TOMOMI, is a gentle song arranged by Yusuke Takeda from RADWIMPS.

TOMOMI: When I was feeling a little frazzled a while ago, I felt as though doing housework cleansed my feelings. I then turned that into a song. Since I made with just one guitar, it turned out to be a funky song that also made me think that it'd be difficult to translate this into something that we could do as a band. But, I wanted to challenge myself to playing acoustic guitar for this song that I personally am attached to. When I talked with Takeda in advance about how I'd like to step up our live show game someday, he put his all into finishing it up with an acoustic arrangement. It made me happy that I was stumped with how to arrange it, and it felt like I had been rescued from the uneasy feelings I had of not being able to translate it to a band sound.

―A dark and hard world view is shown in "A.M.D.K.J." It's an ending song for the anime "GeGeGe no Kitaro," correct?

RINA: Yes. We wrote it specifically for the anime. It was right around the time we had been wanting to write a song that could be a killer tune at our live shows, and we went ahead with pairing together a Kitaro-like world view & an eerie atmosphere. Kitaro's catchphrase, "Mieteru sekai ga subete ja nai (The world you see isn't all there is)," is also a great line. This was the first time anger was the theme for a song, as we wanted to put all of our emotions—not just our sparkly side—into the album.

―The personal aspects in this work certainly are richly depicted.

RINA: Our range of attack has definitely expanded. I wrote words I thought I would never use before, and I felt like I chose words that could get rid of the lyric rules I had created for myself. In particular, all of the words in "A.M.D.K.J." are strong.

―"YOU GO GIRL!", the bonus track that can only be found on the physical CD editions of the album, features a positive attitude despite feeling that you have a weakness. It's wonderful that the album closes out with this song.

RINA: I'm happy to hear that. You can see almost the whole story of the album with it. Though there are days when you negatively fall down with a crash, you just need to take everything in a brighter direction. Tomorrow is another day. Those are the thoughts we put into the title, Kiss from the darkness. At that time, the staff gave us the idea to put "YOU GO GIRL!" as the last track. It certainly is a song that explains the entirety of the album title. "You go, girl" is an encouraging slang term that means "Give it your all!" or "Keep at it!", so I'm glad we concluded the album with this song.

―I can clearly feel your resolution to be a band that doesn't only show their positive side.

RINA: Yes. We are ready to face music with all of our humanity and frankness.

HARUNA: We need to show that side, or else we certainly won't be able to continue on for much longer. Rather, it feels weird just showing a positive side. It's natural as a human being to have all sorts of waves in your life. We thought about what we, who were only showing our positive side, could say to people. We're performers, but we're the same as you. We want to keep being people who can convey those same feelings via our music.

RINA: It's not that we want to vent our difficulties or anger, but we also can't always be cheerful. We want to connect to our music all the good and bad things we feel as we live our lives while being true to ourselves every day.

―Doesn't the music you create often help your own selves out?

RINA: Exactly! It gives us hope. We sing about not giving in to your weaknesses in both "Saishuuheiki, Kimi" and "Masterpiece," so that's basically what my thoughts are (laughs). It's good that SCANDAL is feeling fresh right now. Although it's still an unknown factor, we always have an unfounded confidence that we'll be just fine.

HARUNA: We started a label because we wanted to head to a new phase, and in 2019 we did regular tours, a fan club tour, events, festivals, joint shows, etc. We did it all. It was a year where all of our challenges came to fruition, and it all gave us a ton of confidence. 2020 is going to be the best year for the band to be able to tour around Japan and the world as we are now.



2011.7.3 AM2 2012.3.28 SCANDAL vs BUDOKAN 11.3+4 QAT Tour @名古屋 11.10 Happy MUSIC Live 2012 2013.3.3 SCANDAL OSAKA-JO HALL 2013 2014.6.1 HNL Ekiden & Music 2014 6.2 Fan Meeting 2015 HELLO WORLD @ Paris - London - Essen - Chicago - MEX - LA - Anaheim 2016.1.12+13 PERFECT WORLD 5.21 Welcome Fan Meeting 5.22 HNL Ekiden & Music 2016 5.23 Farewell Fan Meeting 8.21 SCAFes 2017.7.14 47 Prefecture Tour @茨城 7.15 水戸 7.17 東京 2018 Special Thanks @NY - SF - Anaheim - MTY - MEX - Dallas 2022 MIRROR @Toronto - NY - Boston - Atlanta
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Posted Fri Jan 31, 2020 2:58 pm



Shiroten Performer
Shiroten Performer
Thank you for the translation.

OMG, I love this band so much! I grew up with Beatlemania, now I can grow old with SCANDALmania. The more I know about all these young women, the more I respect them. Just a few minutes of listening to their music makes my whole day better.  .wow.

まつげの先が頬をかすめる距離で 目が合ったら
When our eyes meet at the distance my eyelashes graze your cheeks
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Posted Sat Feb 01, 2020 5:14 am



Caless Student
Caless Student
thanks for the translation, here was the detail of "You go Girl!"

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