DaizyStripper EGO: Interview [日本語あり]

Interview

by Leela McMullen, Kate Havas, Laura Cooper, Mio Nagasaki, Eric Agnew, Yuliya Libkina, posted February 13, 2014

English日本語

DaizyStripper treated ROKKYUU and our readers to an interview at once emotional and entertaining. Tears will flow as Yugiri shares the secret behind his lyrics for Baby Kingdom but laughter won’t be far behind as the band reveal their feelings about rivals Frantic Emery…

69: Last time we interviewed DaizyStripper, it was at the beginning of your five month release series. Since then you’ve released another four singles and each is quite different in style. Could you each introduce one of those singles?
Kazami: Then, I’ll start with “STARGAZER.” It was the first of the five works and we put a lot of thought into it. “What is DaizyStripper?” The first of the five works is, of course, very important. I wanted to summarize what makes up DaizyStripper and express it through the first song so I listened again to all of the songs we have released so far and while I was thinking about what defines DaizyStripper, I wrote this song. Until then, I’d mostly just gone ahead and written songs but the one I wrote over again tens of times is “STARGAZER” and because of that, I asked the opinions of people around us and incorporated those in as well. There were so many ideas mixed together that it grew overly complicated but in the end I was able to wrap it up in a simpler package. It’s a song that went through a lot of trial and error in the writing.
Nao: To explain “MISSING” simply, it’s what I think of as “dark DaizyStripper.” There are a lot of bands playing heavy music in visual kei but mostly they go towards shouting, etc. DaizyStripper’s form of aggression is to have a heavy song built around a beautiful melody with bitter lyrics. This is the song we have been playing most at event lives. It’s a song that seems to be very popular among the fans.
Mayu: I’m guitarist, Mayu. “Uso to Kagerou.” This song is also on in which we wanted to put forth something a bit different from the usual concept of DaizyStripper so it has an atmosphere of retro and “gorgeousness.” If you watch the music video, it should be quite obvious, but it’s a song in which that concept of retro and “gorgeousness” has been clearly expressed. So far, DaizyStripper has never tried a look like this or made a music video like this and amidst all of that, this is a song that shows a certain characteristic of DaizyStripper.
Rei: I’m bassist Rei. “HELLO, again” is the one and only ballad among the five singles but it’s a rock ballad score very different to the ballads we have made so far and among both these five songs and all of our most prominent ballads, I think it is our warmest song. It’s a piece that embraces Yugiri’s voice.
Yugiri: I’m vocalist Yugiri. As for “Derringer” …When we decided to release singles consecutively for five months, we thought we should change our look completely—change our hair and everything—to make an impact with our visuals. So that was our concept and we went through various styles but in “Derringer” I had extensions with tons of braids in my hair. Of course, we wanted the tunes and lyrics for all five months to be five completely different styles and that was how they were written but “Derringer” has very sordid lyrics. It’s very VK and girls who like visual kei all like that kind of thing, I think. I tried to write about a world steep in a somewhat psychedelic romance or love and the music is very much on the offense. A derringer. A pistol. That kind of jutting, imminent danger seems to be part of the music. I think we made something awesome and most importantly, we were able to steadily climb the Oricon charts throughout the five months until “Derringer” took 6th place to top it off. I truly believe this is thanks to all of our fans and I want to say, “Thank you very much.”

69: It wasn’t just “Derringer,” though. “HELLO, again” and the other singles all ranked quite highly on the charts, too.
Yugiri: That’s right. We gradually climbed our way up.
 
69: Incidentally, Yugiri mentioned choreography for the songs in a reminiscence on the six days at O-West. When you write your music, do you think about the choreography?
Yugiri: For this band, the song-writer usually shares his image with the other members and then we all talk about it together and introduce it into lives. If it doesn’t come together then, we talk about it some more and sometimes consult with the fans and work those opinions into it to find the best answer.

69: That’s rare.
Yugiri: There were various options for “LIVE or DIE” even between us members and some fans wanted to swing towels while some wanted to headbang. There are a lot of opinions.

69: Are you ever surprised by how the fans take up the choreography?
Yugiri: I think I have been.
Mayu:  Like in “eating apple”?
Nao: Wasn’t that Yugiri? He just messed up when leading [the choreography].
Rei: I think that might not have been in Japan.
Mayu: Like when they swing their towels for the B melody [latter half of the verse] of “Reincarnation?”
Rei: Oh, the throwing part.
Mayu: Yeah, when I saw that, I was like “Oh!”
Yugiri: It’s because I do that.
Mayu: Oh, it’s because of the conductor.
Nao: Oh, I remember! At O-West, when we played “Dandelion” for the first time in a long time, leading to the chorus I do a four-beat clap and usually at least half the crowd follow me but since it had been a while only six people or so were doing it. The rest were all making heart gestures and stuff. They’d make a heart at their favorite member and I wondered if maybe making hearts has become mainstream in quiet parts.

69: Perhaps it had been so long that they forgot about clapping?
Nao: Yeah, I felt a little cheated. [All laugh]
Nao: I was like, “Huh? You’re supposed to be doing this now…”
Yugiri: You just want them to do things Nao style.
Nao: Well, yeah. I thought everyone was doing it.
Rei: But during the pre-chorus, even if you conduct… [All laugh] Everyone should do it. Why don’t we all try it? I think it’d look awesome.
Mayu: I was also surprised at the choreography for “Tsumi na Batsu.” It’s got powerful choreography in the intro. It was a song we’d been performing since our earliest days but we never really set the choreography. We worried about what to do with it; then we didn’t play it at an event for about two years and when we played it at an event for the first time after that long, there was suddenly a big cheer from the crowd and they started dancing. Even though we hadn’t done the song for two years it suddenly came together. I was surprised at how vigorous it became. It wasn’t like that before, it had always been rather sedate but all of a sudden they just went crazy for it.

69: Rei mentioned this earlier, but how about when you go overseas?
Rei: I really feel like, overseas, as long as there’s sound they’re going to dance whether it’s a ballad or whatever. They just dance freely.

69: Please introduce one of the b-sides from your 5 releases.
Rei: I’ll go with “Mannequin.” Right from the start, I come in on bass and live, that’s the point that stands out the most. I think it might be the most rousing of the songs. It’s really easy to get wild with and easy for the fans to follow along with. It’s got a really thorny feeling.
Nao: I pick “LIVE or DIE.” [Laughs] I picked my own song but maybe that’s because it’s mine. [All laugh] The A-melody [first portion of the verse] goes from being really quiet to suddenly wild. There’s a big gap. It’s quiet, and then an explosion, then quiet again like a wave with high and low points, and it’s kind of like my life. It’s like it matches my feelings.
Nao: That kind of ticks me off. [Laughs]
Mayu:  “Uso to Kagero.” The lyrics are really lonely and…
Nao: Aren’t we doing the B-sides?
Mayu: Oh, the B-sides? Hang on, let me think. [Nao laughs]
Kazami: This was already said, but “Mannequin.” People have the impression that I just make single tunes or ballads but I love heavy songs, too, and I’d been thinking I want to make a song that is really meant to be played live. More than a pilot song, with this coupling song I felt I could limit myself (to what I wanted) so it was easy to write it freely. I was able to express myself even more than I expected by writing “Mannequin” and that was really great.

69: So it’s a song that shows another side of “Kazami.”
Kazami: Yeah.
Mayu:  “Rainbow Blue.” Because Summer can’t help but be really fun.
Nao: That’s true. Didn’t you say at an instore that lives are just like Summer?
Yugiri: Running away from the heat.
Yugiri: We try to run away from all the seasons. [Laughs]
Mayu: I love summer.
Yugiri: Really? What’s your favorite season?
Mayu: Summer. [All laugh]
Rei: Isn’t it spring?
Mayu: I like spring and fall but this summer was very “summer.” [All laugh]

69: So, in what way is “Rainbow Blue” a summer song?
Mayu: I can definitely say that this was the greatest summer of my life and this song really covers that. We got to see a lot of smiles, and it was really fun. I love it. I want to spend every day all year feeling like that. [All laugh]
Yugiri: I’m also doubling up, but the song that says what I want to say the most is “LIVE or DIE.” The lyrics of the others are stories. The lyrics for “eating apple” were Nao’s but the rest were very fanciful. The lyrics for “LIVE or DIE” are very real. “Go all in like you’re gonna die, and since we’re not dead yet come full on.” I want to tell fans that. It also says “Follow me!” When I’m performing it, I’m thinking about how I’m saying that directly to the fans.

69: To go with the releases and onemans, you also had “Special After Party” events. Were there any interesting events?
Yugiri: The first one was in Okayama on my birthday, May 13. The members had prepared a letter from my mom and I hadn’t heard anything about it so I was really touched. Also, there was a picture of me in my high school band when I first decided to become a musician. I was playing guitar then. They said they had that [laughs] and that it was printed out and on display so they told people to “Take a look when you leave!” [All laugh] When they started saying this stuff to the fans, I was really surprised. I was completely revealed (to the fans).
Kazami: At the after party event when Mayu was talking with the fans, his eyes were darting about. We all know he does that—the fans too—and he knows it himself. So at the Kyushu after party, we made a paper mache, like a goldfish. Or was it a blowfish?
Mayu: A blowfish and a sea breem. They’re lucky.
Kazami: They’re lucky. So anyway, we made them in 3D out of Japanese traditional paper and we colored them and helped the fans at the various tables with their drawings. At one table, the blowfish had these massive eyes drawn on and when I asked what the deal was, they said “Mayu drew this for us.” Even the fish’s eyes darted around! [Laughs]
Mayu: In each place we played a double encore and we tried to change the song lyrics to be a song that went with each place and in Nagoya…
Yugiri: The day you sang?
Mayu: Yeah, when I was singing. I put all of my spirit into singing and at the last second of the song we were going to jump and finish it up the moment we landed but Nao was drumming and Nao just kept holding up the sticks in false endings like he was going to finish and I kept thinking it was over and then I jumped. All the musicians carefully watched for the moment I landed, and made eye contact and finished with a last note. [Laughs] I’m the only one who jumped and missed the big finish. [All laugh] They tricked me. [Laughs] It was really embarrassing.
 
69: So, you just finished the 6 days at O-WEST. Other than your own day, which did you feel was the most fun?
Nao: I liked all of them but other than mine, I guess Yugiri’s day. Our song “Black DROPPer” is really rousing and it repeats over and over and feel I really surpassed my limits (on that day).
Yugiri: Rei’s day was like that too, wasn’t it?
Nao: Yeah, but the day before was Kazami’s day, right? For six years Kazami’s drum kit has always been in the same place but he’s a drummer who wants to be in front so on his day, he was in front, and me, Mayu, and Rei were playing behind him. I’m glad he got to do what he wanted but since I’m always in front, it was really hard to play from behind. So when it was Yugiri’s day the next day, I thought it was a lot more fun. [All laugh]
Kazami: For me it was Mayu’s day. A while back at our Kudan Kaikan live, I passed out, and (on Mayu’s day) we got to re-do the set we couldn’t finish at Kudan Kaikan. I really regretted not being able to finish our set that day. I’ve always been depressed about it. I feel like, finally, that burden was lifted—like something that had been caught in my throat was finally out—so it was really good. I finally got to see the scenery I couldn’t see on that day (at Kudan Kaikan) and I felt very warm (and pleasant).

69: How was the reality?
Kazami: The venue was different and the image was very different but I could see the faces of the fans who wanted to hear that set. It was like meeting again after three years.
Rei: I liked Yugiri’s day—the moment we pranked Kazami.
Mayu: [Laughs] The surprise?
Yugiri: Oh, the children?
Rei: Yeah, the children. The moment the projector started rolling, that was really fun. He really had no idea. I still have flashbacks of Kazami’s face from that.
Yugiri: I didn’t get to see his expression.
Nao: Oh yeah, you were bringing out the kids.
Rei: The kids had gotten bigger, and we’ve grown too. I wondered how many times we could pull this gag off.
Nao: Kazami and I went home together after and he said, “What on Earth would you do if I really left?”

69: Which surprised you more? The kids coming out three years ago, or this time?
Kazami: Ahhh…. It was a whole different realm of surprise. Three years ago I really had no idea what the hell they were doing but this time, it was like, “What? Again?” [All laugh] If they’ve done it twice, I wonder if it could happen a third.
Nao: If it wasn’t (O-)WEST, I think you couldn’t have known but because it was WEST, you should have.
Mayu: It was totally unnecessary, though.
Kazami: Now I’m scared they’ll do it again somewhere.
Yugiri: No…? We won’t do it again…? [All laugh]
Mayu: For me, it was the surprise prepared for us on the 6th day, Daizy EGO, by our company president in the encore. Seeing the message from him run through the projector and reading the messages to each of the members, I was really moved and also felt really proud that the fans present could see the kind of people we work with. I was so happy that they could experience the kind of environment we work in. I think there was a lot they could learn from that. When it started, we had no idea what was happening. Music that we hadn’t prepared started playing and I was like, “What?” and then the screen suddenly came down. It was like, “Woah, what has our president pulled?”
Yugiri: I have two (favorite days). The first gave me very mixed emotions but, on Rei’s day, we made a video designed to really make the fans’ hearts flutter. In my video, I said, “Oh, you’re here.” I was a little cold but then, at the end, I said, “Today, I’m singing for you.” Then I was encouraged to say it again when we were live onstage but I really, really didn’t want to. I begged them to knock it off but it was no good. I swear, I really didn’t want to. I’m not sure how I felt about speaking such human emotions. My other (favorite) was during Nao’s day. We did “Black DROPPer” twice and both times felt great but the second time was just ecstasy—like having a total orgasm. It was amazing.

69: You crowd surfed, right? Was it your first time?
Yugiri: It was the second time I’d ever done it but only on that day, it was so great I jumped twice. Furthermore, Nao was getting totally out of control so I was a little worried, but seeing his craziness actually made me enjoy it more and feel like I couldn’t let him best me, so it was really fun. No one got hurt and though I was a little worried about the fans, I thought I’d really love to repeat that kind of live that brought out our dark side. For example, a tour of two-day lives where the first live is our dark side and the second live is the heart of DaizyStripper… I felt like I want to try something like that.

69: And now lets talk about your own days. Kazami, on your day, you were up the front. Were you satisfied?
Kazami: I’m completely satisfied.

69: Was it a shame to have to return to the back?
Kazami: Yes, it was bittersweet. [All laugh] Being in the back has some enjoyment to it—and that’s fine—but I originally stood up front and because I know what it feels like to be in the fore,
It’s frustrating that since becoming a drummer, I’ve always been in the back. I had decided that I wanted to play up front one day and it was great to have that fulfilled. Being up close to the fans was the best part. I could see the nuances of expression I can’t usually see from the back so I’m glad I was able to drum up front. I was also able to experience what he other members must feel up front all the time and also, I’m glad they were able to experience how it feels to play a live at a greater distance (from the fans).

69: You played “Hoshizora to Kimi no Te” on piano while singing, too. Why did you choose that song in particular?
Kazami: Of the songs we’ve released until now, that’s the only song I wrote both the words and music to, so I wanted to do it, and also, when I posted on my blog and twitter saying I was going to play and sing, I asked what fans wanted to hear and “Hoshizora to Kimi no Te” was a very popular answer so I went with it. The fan’s opinion also played a role.

69: Yugiri, it seems that there was a message in your set list. So, why did you choose to play and singaquarium as a solo?
Yugiri: When we played it before at Koukaido, it was my first time to play the guitar in front of the fans. [Nao laughs] What are you laughing at? [Laughs] I was really nervous about playing in front of everyone then, but it was really fun so when we decided to do EGO, I thought I might both play and sing solo just like Kazami. I thought about what song I could play and I’m not an expert, but it seems that Daizy’s songs have really difficult guitar chords.
Nao: Yeah, they’re complicated.
Yugiri: Of our songs, “aquarium” is relatively easy.
Mayu: Yeah.
Nao: It is.
Yugiri: It’s good for beginners—even easy for a novice like me to play—and the lyrics have a lot of things we want to say to our fans so it was the best choice.

69: We heard that you wrote the lyrics of Baby Kingdom” for Nao. Can we ask why?
Yugiri: When Nao was young, he lost both of his parents. My parents are both still really healthy so I can’t even imagine the pain and sadness that comes with losing your parents at such a young age. It’s out of reach for me. If I’d lost my parents when I was a kid, I would have strayed from the right path and rebelled against the world. I don’t think I would have grown up to be such a normal person. I think I would have opposed everything and come to live a life very far from that of an honest man. But… looking at Nao, he’s not like that at all. He grew up being really straightforward and kind. Maybe this sounds like simply gazing down from above but I’m sure that even now, he carries a lot of conflict, suffering, and sadness and I felt that I wanted to put it to music. The song that I wrote with the intention that by putting it to music, that sad past might change even a little into a brighter future was “Baby Kingdom.” If you look at the lyrics, I chose those kinds of words so I think you’ll understand somehow.

69: Ah, so that was what you meant. Thank you. Well then, this is a very different topic, but you also did a frantic EMIRY cover. Why did you decide you want to cover that band?
Yugiri: I really like that song but I hate frantic EMIRY. I never want to see them again.
Mayu: We’ve met them.
Yugiri: Yeah, I even got an autograph.
Mayu: We’ve seen them live, too. [Nao laughs]
Yugiri: I really hate them. They’re awful. But I think the song is really cool so I wanted to cover it so we did, but it was really hard to copy.

69: It’s a dark song, very different from how you sing in DaizyStripper. Did you have to work on that?
Yugiri: I tried to imitate that crappy EMIRY as much as possible when I sang.

69: Now for Mayu’s day. We heard a little from Kazami about his desire to reproduce your Kudan Kaikan live but it seems that you also wanted to revisit it, Mayu.
Mayu: I really wanted to see the scenery we couldn’t view on that day. It had been a really good show for us so I really wanted to see what it would be like to finish it as the current DaizyStripper, and thought I could use this opportunity to do that.

69: Do you feel resolved?
Mayu: I do. Like Kazami just said, I don’t think it was exactly the same scenery. Rather, we used the DaizyStripper that exists now and we were able to learn how the DaizyStripper of now would express that occasion. In the end, we were able to view brand new scenery. Then DaizyStripper of then and the DaizyStripper of now were able to view different scenery. It was neither the old or the new but something new altogether. That we were able to see and express that is great. It’s simply what the people present in the venue that day were able to experience.

69: You’ve played all sorts of songs in acoustic version so why did you choose “Farewell Line” to play accoustic on your day?
Mayu: Farewell Line,” which featured me on acoustic guitar and Yugiri singing, was from the 2009 Takadanobaba Area oneman where we played it the once but at that time, “Farewell Line” hadn’t been recorded. It was still in the demo stage. However, when these members gathered, it was the first demo I had brought in. Then, when I asked on my blog if there was a song from our past onemans that the fans wanted to hear again, acoustic “Farewell Line” had the most voices in favor, so I was decided.

69: Thank you. Next is Rei. We talked about it a little, but you made videos, right?
Rei: Yeah, the “kyun kyun” videos.

69: Why did you go with that plan?
Rei: It’s not something you can see at our usual shows and events, right? I wanted to show a side of the members you don’t usually get to see; something that wasn’t just fun but that would really bring out the different emotions people—not just the fun but also the violence and also make something that would touch both male and female fans so I prepared those videos. I was the director for the videos, I wrote the scripts, and I conveyed to the members what I wanted from them and when we screened them it turned out pretty well, right? Fans have said they want us to put the clips on DVD. But we won’t. [Laughs] Although I think it would be nice to do it again in a different project. Still, the fans who were there and saw them said they liked seeing a side of the members they usually wouldn’t so that’s the most important thing.

69: There were bar scenes, etc, too.
Rei: Yeah. We got comments that it’s unusual for our fans to see us in suits and glasses but I think guys in suits look really cool and since we’re usually in costume, it’s actually unusual, right? Fans don’t get to see us like that. We don’t usually do shows in suits but actually, even I think guys in suits are hot.

69: Who do you think is the most romantic member of DaizyStripper, Rei?
Rei: The most romantic member? Wouldn’t that be me? [All laugh]

69: You also sang that day, right?
Rei: Yeah, I sang “True Love.” I explained in the video, but that song led me on the path to music. When I was working as a care worker in a nursing home, I would sing it for the residents during rec time and they would cry and clap. I came to feel it was natural that music has his kind of power to rehabilitate the heart. I thought that music was really amazing and it would be great to help more people through music, because music is healing. And it’s not just comforting. Sometimes, a heavy song makes you feel refreshed. It has that aspect, too. So, at first, I wanted to become a musician for various people and the song that started it was “True Love.”

69: Thank you. Now for Nao’s day... You broke your guitar.
Nao: I broke it. [All laugh] I didn’t plan to break it… Really! Even though everyone says I did.

69: Was it already kind of broken from when you kicked it the day before?
Nao: Just a little. But I could play it just fine. The live was so fun that I went past the peak and just couldn’t stop myself. The one thing I don’t need in a show is sense, so I just completely throw out reason. There are pros and cons to that but it was incredibly fun. Also, I was thinking “It can break this easily?” but regretting it would be totally uncool as a rocker and I didn’t want to be that… I definitely won’t ever forget that live.

R.I.P Nao's alternate guitar.

69: It was pretty hardcore. Yet in the same show, you also played an acoustic number, “Rude boy.” At that point, you said that the lyrics are your favorite lyrics by Yugiri. What is it that you like about them?
Nao: The character in the song is utterly alone but fights to that he can become his true self, ideal self, and I feel like that’s a direct reflection of myself in real time. Even though I’ve never confided something like that, I feel like this song is supporting me in real time. I really love it.

69: Thank you. So, you guys played for six days straight. It must have been tough on you. Did you employ any countermeasures to keep yourselves in good shape?
Yugiri: Of course, I was worried that my throat would get really dry and I wondered if my body could take it—with all the aches and having to keep up my energy. My throat was the only thing I couldn’t guarantee with willpower alone, though, so I had to think of something. Recently, there’s something called an oxygen capsule and I had heard that going into an oxygen capsule helps the membranes in the throat to heal quickly so I went three times during the six days. After the shows I would ice my throat, drink “Throat Coat” tea, eat honey, and other things. I was somehow able to get through all six days but about two days later the exhaustion hit me all at once. My voice was in shambles and I knew I had really overreached my limit after all. I wasn’t suffering any muscle pan and I could have gone on and on but there was nothing for it where my throat was concerned.

69: Have you ever lost your voice singing, before?
Yugiri: I’ve never lost my voice just from singing. When I have a cold it happens sometimes, but not just from singing. I think my throat is stronger than most people’s. When even my voice gave up, I thought that six days was definitely the limit.

69: Yugiri says he didn’t have any muscle pain but how about the rest?
Kazami: I’m a drummer so I use my whole body, so all of a sudden my whole body hurt. Just being sore is fine but when lactic acid starts to build up in my legs I can’t move anymore. It becomes easy for my legs to cramp and we have a lot of songs that use the double bass drum, so I start to lose precision. To avoid that as much as possible, I tried to do what my senior drummers do. I went to the stone sauna and sweated as much as possible and I let my body become exhausted in order to sleep. On the last day, Daizy EGO, I went in the morning to the oxygen capsule with Yugiri and we recovered and were able to go on. We were much more careful this time than we would be for a normal show. It was super effective.

Nao: I didn’t use oxygen capsules or take supplements or anything but I had a lot of muscle pain, too. I think our personalities really come out (in our countermeasures—or lack of) and, maybe this is just me being rock, but I didn’t do crap. I just slept at my house, woke up, and went to the show. That’s my style. Mayu and Rei went for massages but I didn’t. [All laugh] I just let out all my stress. I don’t really care about what happens to my body.
Mayu: I went for a massage before the last day but other than that, I took really hot baths every day.
Nao: How hot?
Mayu: About 41 degrees (106 F).
Nao: 41 degrees? If you’re going to say hot, it should be at least 45 degrees (115 F). [Laughs]
Mayu: I usually take my bath at 39 degrees (102 F), so I raised the temperature to 41.
Rei: I usually set it to 42℃ (108F). [Laughs]
Yugiri: Yeah, I usually have it at 42 or 43. [Laughs]
Mayu: I think 41 is pretty hot. So, after getting out, I would stretch, then before sleeping I’d take supplements.
Yugiri: Isn’t that what you always do? Or just when we’re doing onemans?
Mayu: I’d been refraining from taking supplements for a while. (Before that,) I’d been regularly taking a vitamin pill before bed. As for muscle pain, as the days went on, I felt myself getting stiff so on the last day I went for a massage. The stiffness went away and the next day I was really limber.
Yugiri: You felt like you were number one?
Mayu: I am number one.
Rei: Other than getting a massage, after the first day I went to the park and played and sang for about 2-3 hours.
Mayu: 2-3 hours!?
Rei: Yeah. After Yugiri’s day, we didn’t have any equipment in the van and it was empty, so I practiced in there. It would have been a pain to go to the studio so I just closed the back (and played.)
Yugiri: Really? In the dark?
Rei: In the dark.

69: were you practicing? Or just looking for some alone-time?
Rei: I just don’t like feeling uncertain about anything.

69: Now, we’d love to hear your thoughts on the six days in general.
Nao: This is just my personal impression, but I didn’t worry too much about details and really enjoyed it. Whether we will really do it is another story but I want to do it again. I’m lonely now that the six days have finished. Every day was really fun. There were various themes and we have a lot of songs, and there were a lot of old songs I had to practice but even so, tall I can say is that it was fun. I want to do it again. And I have to buy a new guitar. [All laugh]
Kazami: We did the six days and every day was different—you could really see all the personalities of our members. We tried to make it so that songs were not often repeated. By doing such different lives, I think we showed that we are a band who has various aspects. Even if he have extremely hardcore days like Nao’s, we  have days which are nothing like that, too and since forming DaizyStripper, even I have thought to myself “DaizyStripper are amazing!” Having succeeded at this, I realized how strong our members but also how wonderful our fans are. Even though we set out on this really absurd plan, they came for six days straight and our staff supported us, too, so I’m really grateful. I’m simply full of gratitude.
Rei: We just had the six days of Egoist Colors, and they were shows that really let out our various personalities. I was really happy that the fans got what we were doing and this is the first step toward a new DaizyStripper. Maybe there were some people who couldn’t come to my day and others who came to every day… Maybe some were there for the first time. Either way, each day was rich, and even though we were worried about our endurance, but even with that worry we were able to have an enjoyable six days, so I am really thankful. I’m grateful to all of the fans who allowed me to feel that way.
Mayu: I thought it was fun to do various kinds of shows. The set lists were different from our usual sets but the fans really enjoyed it and we did, too. When I think of that, I wonder if not sticking to one thing and going in various directions is what we should do from now on. Our qualities became clear over the six days and we were really looking forward to mixing it up well and showing you our different forms. I think we had fun all the way to the end.
Yugiri: It’s simply fun to perform all sorts of songs; old songs, nostalgic songs, trying songs we haven’t done in a while… I truly felt that DaizyStripper is really cool. It gave me confidence. This is an odd way to say it but I don’t usual feel that DaizyStripper are cool at our usual lives. I mean, we’re just doing what we do. But playing those six days, I felt over and over again that we are absolutely amazing. These onemans helped me see the future. Or, on the other hand, that they helped us show our fans the future. We’ll write cool songs again and put on lots of cool lives and with the DaizyStripper we believe in, I want to make everyone who has faith in us feel even better. I really thought that over these six days. I’m truly glad we did it. Although, personally, I don’t want to do it again. [Nao laughs]

69: Then maybe Nao can sing next time. [Laughs]
Nao: What? No one would pay to hear that! [Laughs]
Yugiri: No one would pay.  [All laugh]
Nao: Shut up! [Laughs]
Yugiri: But I think that, from now on, people will expect a lot from us.

69: Finally, we’d like you to give our readers a message based on one of DaizyStripper’s song titles.
Rei: In my case, this includes all six days but particularly on my day, we performed songs that touched on my musical roots and the reason we started DaizyStripper. I became glad that I met these members all over again. At first, there weren’t many (people supporting us) but over time, more people have come to watch us, to support us and to me, all of our fans and the people supporting us—everyone who comes to see us—are my most important treasure (“Torezoa”).
Kazami: Likewise, performing for six days, I felt that lives are just so abundant with color and life. The expressions of our fans and their impressions were both wonderful. All five members of Daizy have differing preferences and thought patterns. I think it’s great that we are so colorful. It’s the same for dreams. “Shikisai” (Colors) should be abundant and from now on, for all those who continue on with DaizyStripper, we will show you a “Vivid” world. [Note: The song title is “Shikisai Vivid”]


Nao: We did different kinds of shows during the six days and during Nao EGO, I was able to do lots of fresh things and things which I had envisioned. Including all of that, the “Boku ha boku no mama de ikitsuzuketeiku” (I will continue to live on in my own way) of the lyrics to “Baby Kingdom” come to mind.
Mayu: Being able to meet for six days—of course we are always being supported by the fans who come to our usual lives, but the same is true for everyone who came to the six days. Many have said, “Every day was fun and being separated is lonely!” but we will always be “UNDER THE SUN” together. [Note: Under the same sun.]
Nao: But it’s a very Mayu-like answer. [Laughs]
Mayu: We’re all “Under the Sun” so we are always by your side.
Yugiri: I want to meet everyone we met during the six days again. It’s likely there were people we couldn’t meet but let’s definitely “Hello, again.”

69: Thank you!

Leela McMullen is a strong believer in the philosophy "no music, no life." Having traversed the range of Japanese fandoms, she found her home at last in visual kei and has made it her mission to share what she loves most with the world. Leela completed her B.A. in Japanese language from Griffith University in Gold Coast Australia. She now lives and works in Japan, striving to bring you the goods, hot from the scene. Follow her on twitter for juicy hints of upcoming articles if you've got a bit of Japanese language under your belt! http://twitter.com/#!/LeelaInTokyo

Kate Havas first became interested in Japanese fashion and culture in college when manga, anime, and visual kei were just beginning to make their way to America. An art and English major with a love of clothes, Kate signed onto ROKKYUU in order cover fashion and report on Tokyo trends, but was quickly also recruited to the music side of things and has been having an adventure expanding her knowledge of all things VK since. Follow her on twitter at keito_kate!

Laura Cooper started photographing rock and jazz bands at university. While completing a degree in English Literature, she was literary co-editor of the York University arts magazine and held poetry soirees with comedy jazz bands. Laura wrote for the now defunct UK Goth magazine Meltdown, as well as edited for an occult/spiritual website while she lived in York and London. She disappeared into the mountainous depths of Japan in 2006 and is now based in Tokyo, capturing rock bands in action.

Mio Nagasaki is a freelance photographer lending her time, skills, and love for the genre to ROKKYUU Magazine.

@YuliyaPhoTop (Twitter) Yuliya is originally a fashion and portrait photographer with a BA from the London College of Fashion. Being a Japanophile with a passion for the Japanese rock scene and especially for old school visual kei, she moved to Japan where she found a chance to combine photography and music with ROKKYUU's help. Now she is based in Tokyo, where she keeps on rocking and shooting, enjoying every bit of it.

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