- And then, you discussed your course for the future with the members of Malice?
"Yeah. First Asia, then Europe, then to appear in America last was my vision, and I discussed this order with them before the release of "Voyage" ('96). I said "I like European music too, and Malice does incorporate some of those elements, and I think our music could take them on, but we should start with Asia". Mana (guitar) liked French pop music, and his thoughts were centred around that, so he said "At any rate, we're doing Europe". Of course, Mana's way of thinking was interesting, and not exactly conflicting since we did incorporate French pop... Well, I always discussed it with a view to the result, "In order to obtain your final goal, you need to think about what to do before that, and then what needs to be done before that~", I talked about the future, meaning taking Asia first, but the response was the same as the guys in Kyoto "I don't get it" (bitter laugh)"
- Hmm, for young band members, I think that was natural.
"I was like "I understand you don't understand" (laughs). You won't understand if you don't let me show you. Kami (drums), reacted exactly the same way as You did back then, mouth hanging open, saying nothing but "Huuh? Whaa?" (laughs). He had willpower; "I want to be good at drums", but as for "The reason why you do music", his awareness was low even among the members."
- It's been 7 years since Kami passed away.
"I remember lots of things we talked about... "Gackt, you've played piano since you were a small child, and you can play guitar too~", to him, composing was a complex thing... but I said "No, composing has nothing to do with instruments, if you understand the meaning in making music, you can do it". But I could never get him to understand. It couldn't be helped. If you can't find the meaning on your own, you won't be able to understand until you do."
- But all five members of Malice must have had individually been strong.
"It's not that they were strong. Malice was an interesting band, but what I honestly thought when I met them was "I don't know that they're at the level of musical genius". I think if they'd been able to raise that, they could have been a more amazing band. But they had plenty of visual sense to make up for that. I'd been waiting for people who were truly skilled at the presentation of their work. I told them "You can't say "It's okay because it's good". Because even if you have enough technique to match the words, it's a different problem as to whether you can convey emotions to your audience. It's not that you can convey emotions to your audience just by being good at performing. But if you can become even better than that, you can reach your audience from further away, so if you have something that can reach everyone, you can continue to raise your technique". But outside of Kami, the members all really hated practising (bitter laugh)."
- (laughs) By that do you mean, since you'd come from practising over and over again to the utmost of your ability in Kyoto, it looked like that to you?
"They really hated it. At the time I said "Let's practice more", really nagging them about it. I told them firmly "Because we only have this level of performance ability, if we don't practice more and increase the breadth of our playing, sooner or later it will boil down to not being able to make songs any more". I thought even if their performance level wasn't high, there are so few people who can present to this extent, so if we got even better now, wouldn't we be strong? So I became a nag sometimes. But with all their various aspects, they were fascinating people with strong personalities (laughs). Even though they were self indulgent. When everyone quarrelled, they couldn't get their words across skilfully, so they'd rapidly sink into silence. Seeing that, I was the one who'd take it into consideration, so (bitter laugh), I'd interrupt with "What Kami wants to say is this, right?" and "Mana-chan is trying to say this, right?", being the interpreter and moderator (laughs). But because we'd often part having butted heads, I'd go to each of their houses and say "What he wanted to say was this" a lot. Although Yu~ki (bass) didn't say things, so I didn't with him".
- Ahh, I understand.
"Come to think of it... hanging out with Yu~ki-chan was comfortable. We didn't do much together in our private time, but I feel like he was a subject of interest to me"
- Looking back on Malice Mizer's work, do you have any thoughts on it?
"We didn't fuss over the quality of the sound or the sound itself much, but I still think even now that we created something interesting. If we were to remake it, I do think I could make it more interesting, but at the time I thought we made it interesting enough. I really thought we could go into Asia, and felt we could create a new movement. I also thought at the time there were no other band members who could fascinate so much on stage. I don't know about now, but at the time, everyone really shone well."
3.5 pages left to go... the next one is about leaving Malice and beginning solo... ^_^v
Also, while googling phrases I didn't quite understand, I found this dictionary of Japanese idiom. OMFG, I have wanted something like this for such a long time, but never knew how to find it *_*