兄弟: 追憶のhide

Brothers: Recollections of hide

Author: Matsumoto Hiroshi
Translation: w_b

Please do not repost this translation. I wanted to share a bit of Hiroshi's book since it's pretty funny by parts but I am doing so without any sort of official permission. For this reason I am asking you not to repost the following text. Please just link instead.
Thank you! :)

A Close Call in the Jaguar

The spring that X-Japan's nationwide tour got cancelled hide became increasingly focused on his solo activities.

He flew to L.A. at the beginning of April, and soon after turning into a "studio shut-in" he finished recording the singles Misery and Beauty&Stupid, all before the start of the summer. He then went straight into recording for his second solo album, Psyence.

Incidentally, I've been told that "psyence" is a term he coined with his co-producer Inada Kazuhiko, nicknamed I.N.A., when they were recording at the L.A. studio.

During that era people were at last able to make full use of the progressing "computer science", yet still the predominant thought was that science could not be used to express abstract ideas. I expect that the same was thought of music and perhaps that is why, as a person of artistic sensitivity, hide took pride in his work.

To be perfectly honest, at the time I hadn't yet grasped the full meaning of the word. But now I understand that what they were pursuing was a so-called "scientific" fusion of the software and hardware aspects of hide's music.

hide used to compose by first recording songs, sung to his own accompaniment, onto his computer. Then once finished, he'd deal with the arrangement. But with I.N.A. he was elated about being "able to make the best album with the fewest people, in the shortest span of time".

I.N.A. had quit the company for which he used to work as the synthesizer programmer in order to become X's personal manipulator.

Charmed by I.N.A.'s talent, hide had made a personal request.

"I'd like you to consider working exclusively with me, I don't want you to be forced to peddle your talents. But I have one request: please don't ever consider yourself my employee. What's good is good, what is bad is bad, I won't be able to work with you if you aren't honest about these things. See, I want to make the best, the ultimate songs."

That's what he said, "the best, the ultimate songs".

That was in '92. hide had known just the thing to say to convince I.N.A.

They worked together until hide's death but I believe it was the start of their recording in L.A. which marked the beginning of the most creative period of their collaboration. Trying to capitalize on all the feedback received after the first album came out, they threw themselves into recording for the second. I could feel their enthusiasm every single time hide called me from his work in L.A.

I myself had stayed back in Japan to take care of some odd jobs here and there. The office of course remained open despite hide's absence so I was kept busy filling in for him. And I had another important task: moving hide's beloved Jaguar, since leaving it idle for months at a time would have damaged the engine.

It was the screw up of the century on my part.

As per hide's instructions, I had gone to a certain band's show then dropped by their after party. And on my way home I crashed the Jaguar into a telephone pole.

I had left the party, stopped by a ramen shop, dropped off one of our staff and immediately after, crashed the car.

The light turned green. I went to start the car, turned the steering wheel the wrong way and sent the car into the sidewalk curb. And then on the rebound I crashed into a telephone pole.

There was hide's Jaguar, clamped around the telephone pole like some stag beetle.

I don't know how long I sat there but when I finally opened my eyes, everything was blood red. I was in pain and I couldn't move; I must have hit my head on the front window, I had cuts from glass shards all over my face.

Luckily, being an old fashioned car the Jaguar had a tiny cockpit. They said after that it had minimized the shock and was the reason that I escaped with my life.

My face, my arms and legs were covered in cuts and bruises but I had escaped any serious harm and recovered after a few days at the hospital.

Though at the time of the crash I was incredibly shaken, both from the emotional shock and the pain coursing through my whole body.

"Why did this have to happen, what do I do now?"

I was conscious yet I wasn't moving. Then suddenly, the door was forced open. Hands reached inside and pressed what felt like a handkerchief to my face, grabbed my arms and dragged me out.

It was some passer-by's who came to my aid and pulled me from the car.

I survived thanks to a nurse who happened to be walking by after the end of her night shit and gave me first aid. A little while later I heard the nearing sirens of the ambulance and fire trucks and was soon surrounded by office workers who had come running at the sound, curious to see what had happened.

I remember begging the people around me.

"My cell phone, my cell phone, my cell phone's in the car."

"You don't know what you're saying, the phone isn't important. We're taking you right away."

"No, please, I have phone numbers saved on the memory card, just take my phone."

I must have lost consciousness right after since I don't remember anything else from that day.

The office immediately notified hide and I got the shock of my life when his replies flooded in.

"Is his life in danger?"

"What state is he in?"

"Please, take care of everything."

It seemed like he was genuinely worried about me.

His attitude changed completely the moment he understood that my life wasn't in any danger. He flew into a mad rage.

"What is that fucking moron doing over there in Japan?!"

At that moment, I'm sure he would have punched me if I had been in front of him.

He refused to pick up his phone, no matter how many times I tried calling with an apology.

"What to do, what should I do...."

hide had bought that Jaguar to celebrate X's successful major debut and I had wrecked that commemorative car.

Seemed like the only thing to do was to buy him another one out of my own salary. I was panicking, when he called me. A single call.

"Now that you're ok here's ten thousand yen. I don't care where you find it, just get me the exact same car."

He slammed the receiver down.

In the end I was lucky enough to find a Japanese company that specialized in restoration, and was able to have the Jaguar fully repaired. The car had been rent in two when it hit the telephone pole but by some miracle the engine was intact.

I was also relieved upon finding out that the car insurance would pay for the repairs and that this time, I'd be spared having to pay the compensation.

At a time when I wasn't yet certain whether the Jaguar could be repaired my father ran an idea by hide.

"Why don't you just buy a Benz instead? They're a smooth ride."

And my brother replied, "Nah, Hiroshi survived in the Jaguar. I'd rather that."