Fish Tank 59
Interview with Sakurai Atsushi
Translation: Lola

It's a new year and you've begun January with a tour but how did you find the first fan club only live in Yokohama?
I think people got to enjoy it.

The set list changed from the hall tour to the FC only tour but for how long prior were you thinking about the song choice?
Since last year.

Was it you who mainly decided on the songs both times?
Yes. I voiced that I wanted to do 'Madman Blues-Minashiko no Yuutsu' and 'Rendezvous~'. I wanted to change things up for the FC only lives when possible. I wanted to prepare songs that people could only hear for those lives.

Comparatively, how did you find doing a hall tour and then a standing tour with one album?
For the hall tour, the imagery of the album really comes through because we can use the full depth and width of the stage to make it visually enjoyable. We made it into quite a show. While the live houses...even though I'm limited in some of the things that I can do, they're a lot freer. Those times, it's all about the mood of the venue. And that's the mood I go with....

The Osaka show was filmed for the DVD release last year but did you ask the director for anything in particular?
Yeah. Of course it's meant as a concert video but personally, I wanted to break away from the way we had done live videos up till now. So first I had the director show me what he wanted to do with it, then I told him a couple of the things that I wanted. By dealing with the mechanics of it this way, there's more emphasis on the atmosphere of individual songs and when that happens, it ends up being better than just a live video. That's what I told him and he said that if that worked for me, then it's all good.

How did you find exchanging ideas with this director?
Because it was the first time working together, I had to have him show me how he usually did things. Of course up till now, because our previous director understood Buck-Tick incredibly well, it made things easy. I might have been reluctant about a new director since I didn't know how things would go with him but at the same time, having someone different made me want to get something different and new out of the experience.

A day when you film is different from a regular concert day though isn't it?
Yes of course...because I'm fully aware it will be filmed. Because I was aware of it, it ended up being hard for me. I ended up screwing myself over a bit this time when it came to the recording. I had said it would be good to record in Osaka since we'd be there for two days. But before Osaka we had just returned from Sapporo where it was snowing. Then before that we were in Sendai. That whole week had a really crammed schedule so I felt like...oh crap. But no matter what I do, seems like there's always something that breaks me.

Then you closed the hall tour with a performance at Budoukan.
Because it really felt like a finale to the tour this time, the feeling was one of completion. The hall tour was finished, the filming of the DVD was done and after struggling through being on tour constantly since October, I felt it would never end. But that just made me more stubborn about it. Which ends up being good for my mood both physical and mental.

Then there was the event on the day before Budoukan.
We'd been asked to do the event at Rockin' On before but the timing never worked out. So when we were asked again this time, we humbly accepted the invitation to participate. The people welcomed us so warmly and because of that...I felt incredibly good afterwards. A great tour, this event and then ending the year at Budoukan.

Now you've begun planning for the FC only lives but how did you find the group photo?
Everything we try to do, is for everyone to enjoy. *looks at the photograph* Oh I didn't think you would see everyone so clearly. Mm, that's good.

So, how did you spend your New Year's holiday?
I was so tired that the moment it hit New Year's I got a sore throat. I went to the emergency room at the hospital. I had an intravenous drip and a lot of medicine, I did everything I could to get that I'd be in good form for the standing tour rehearsals. I'm just glad my throat only hurt during the holiday after the Budoukan show, it was good that way.

Oh my god! But that means you spent your holiday recovering rather than having a vacation.
Well I rested in quiet. In the end it's only two days of rest with the rehearsals so, I spent all my time up until the actual show being quiet. Meanwhile the whole time I was thinking that everyone must think I'm shirking work without a good reason. *smiles*

No, not at all *smiles*. But even though you were sick, the tour was approaching so you must have felt in a hurry to get better right?
Well you know I just can't know I'll be better until I actually am right. So while I was apprehensive about it, the rough mood of the live house really helped me out, even the atmosphere with everyone there helps me. It gives me the power to come out and perform.

The new year starts with a tour beginning in January.
Yes but it's fairly customary to end the year with Budoukan and then get into work for the new year. But we changed it up a little this that's interesting. We ended up changing our routine. And I think that's what makes it feel a little more fresh this time around you know?

There's still more of the standing tour left but would say a word for everyone?
I would like to say a great big thank you to all those who came to see us for the hall tour last year and to all those who are waiting to see us for the standing lives. Once again I am thinking of various things that I can do because I want to return and do something good for everyone.
Thank you very much for all the birthday wishes!
It's a little ahead of time for me to be saying this but fufufu, please let's spend a wonderful time together again in April.