Fish Tank 44
Interview with Sakurai Atsushi
Translation: Lola

Please tell us about what's actually going on right now during recording.
Today, as of right now...all the singing, the chorus, the music played by the members is all done being taped. So, from today it's up to the engineer to mix the sound and do the track down. So far one song is complete.

Were there any episodes during recording?
No, it was just long. It took us half a year.

It's true.
So now I'm tired. It's so...draining mentally and physically.

*smiles*. It took quite a long time so did you do anything to stay motivated?
No, not at all. It's hard to stay motivated especially when, honestly, I hate going to the studio *laughs*. I'm such a kid in these situations.

Huh, then how did you manage to finish working on your lyrics?
Well you know. I think everyone just tries their best *smiles*. when we were in school.

Because everyone's there.
Yes *smiles*. So anyway, I try to bear that in mind when tensions rise in the studio.

Even though it took a long time I'd like to hear about how things progressed.
Imai and Hide had already written songs sometime back in October, then by November, Hide had two more and so did writing was progressing relatively fast. Then we had the end of the year lives in Sendai and Kobe...

Then the third in Budoukan.
Because of that it seemed like we were doing lives for the whole month of December, so the lives replaced work. But then by January it was back to work full time. The song writing had been progressing at a good pace and was going amazingly well so it annoyed me when that changed.

Until when were you writing song lyrics?
Mm, until just before April, that's just always the way we do things (at the last minute), usually it's fine like that but this time even on the very day when it was supposed to be done I was worried, is this ok? Is that ok? ...I calmed down only when all the songs were finished being recorded.

Didn't you only start recording songs in April?
No, March.... And we had done two of Hide's songs already last year in November. But then we did the rest in March and April to have them done all in one shot.

Before the single 'Rendezvous~' came out how did you decide on it?
I think we only had about six songs at that point.... So we had to pick a single from out of them but...I already knew which one it'd be *smiles*. Even though there were a few other good candidates that we thought perhaps could have worked, when we played this one we just knew it had to be it. It was unanimous.

When did you talk about coupling the old song 'My Eyes & Your Eyes' with it?
When we were discussing with BMG about how many singles would come out we suggested putting an old song with a new release and asked what they thought of it. Naturally they thought it was a good idea and good timing too. Then they said we'd be releasing two singles.

What was your impression the first time you listened to Imai-san's new arrangement of his song for the demo? The revamped 'My Eyes~'.
Well, since Imai-san was the one singing on the demo I thought it was so cute *laughs*. But really...I thought how it showed his true character.

How did you find recording and singing 'My Eyes~' for the first time in 20 years?
I sang it during a live didn't I?

Yes. During one of the 'Day in Question' shows....
Yeah so because of that I don't think I felt too embarrassed singing it, even though they're not my lyrics I'm fairly at ease with it. Maybe because they're Imai's lyrics, I'm really comfortable with them.

Each person writes song lyrics differently I guess.
Completely. Of course...when it's my own I don't think I'm embarrassed singing them.

But what are your thoughts about the new version of the song being recorded...?
Mmn~, of course, it's...a good song live so maybe my thoughts and feelings on it haven't really changed. But the song's melody changed and that feels a little off to me...

Because you have the other version so deeply ingrained in you.
Yes. So it's a bit strange but...I think it'll be good. Everyone thought it was good when it was done...even myself I find it sounds fresh.

Then the other day you were filming the PV for 'Rendezvous~', you had to be on set early in the morning but were you ok getting up that early?
Noo~, it was too intense for me *laughs*. Since that's when I'm usually sleeping.

When I saw you sleeping in the waiting room I thought aw, getting up early must really be rough on you.
Talk about being in the right place at the right time! I can't believe it! You saw me!? No way *laughs*. I guess I'm too set in the nocturnal habits of my cats.

*smiles*. You filmed the PV in a very high place.
Way too high. I hated it.

Huh?! Are you afraid of heights?
I don't like them. Ah, I realized it when I was on a Ferris Wheel. I just thought oh, this is not good and I started to panic. They just make me feel a little uneasy...heights and closed spaces. It's just becoming more obvious with age...that I'm scared. I'm surprised. Of all things.

But there was a scene stood next to the window.
That was terrifying. There was glass but god, oh god. From that didn't seem like it. I felt so sick.

Have you already watched the PV? How did it come out?
Well the image came out a bit different than I imagined but...well, that's because there's only so much you can do in a PV with restrictions. Like with time and weather... See, the truth is, I wanted to see the night sky filmed from a helicopter. But well it was our first time working with that director so of course there was no pre-established harmony of vision. That's what happens when you work with a lot of various people, maybe that's not such a good thing.

How do you feel about the festival organized to celebrate BT's 20th anniversary? A lot of people will come to celebrate Buck-Tick's achievements.
It was our staff's idea to do that along with the tour, otherwise we might not have done it. I've realized that there's also a steadily increasing amount of young people who've said they'll come. That's really a great feeling you know, it makes things still feel new after all these years. We don't really want anything flashy though. I have the feeling it'll be something that's really us.

Even your great sempai are coming.
I know~. But I can't just send an email about it. Before I was so worried about receiving an email from Tsuchiya-san, I was scared *laughs*. It'll be the first time he and Endo Michiro-san meet. I just can't believe such a meeting will happen at a BT event.

You even decided to make an appearance at the 'Rising Sun'...
For two days I couldn't believe that! That's going to be amazing too. Hige is going to play a solo. After that...ah, there's the Beat Crusaders. We met during Summer Sonic. I've listened to Inoue Yosui-san a lot since then *smiles*.

Finally would you please say a word for all the people who are awaiting the tour, the BT Fest and Buck-Tick's new CD?
First our single 'Rendezvous~' comes out in June, then since our 20th anniversary is a big turning point I want to encourage everyone to sweat with us. This summer!