ASIAN KUNG-FU GENERATION -精選集 BEST HIT AKG 訪談
翻譯自BEST HIT AKG的UK版本-獨家(日本跟台灣都沒!硍!)的! 團員對於每一首歌曲的介紹!
1 "遥か彼方", 2002/11/25發行的迷你專輯"崩壊アンプリファー"
後藤正文: 或許那時候有段期間我有點情緒化. 一方面是, 或許沒有受到賞識有點挫折, 另一方面, 也有想在live house好好奮戰下去的想法. 這首歌曲所想傳達的就是這兩方面的意境和感受, 而且傳達出來的能量要夠直接不拖泥帶水. 那也是爲什麼我能夠在這首歌裡強烈接收到這樣的精神; 一種較細膩敏銳的方式直接傳達出這樣的感受.
伊地知潔: 這首歌曲是我加入樂團後一起完成的第一首歌. 那時候, Asian Kung-Fu Generation亞細亞功夫世代都還沒有創作出一首快節奏的歌曲. 我很想加入我個人的樂團背景, 也是我很愛的龐克和硬搖滾風格進來, 後來我覺得龐克和硬搖是我被邀請加入樂團的重要意義和使命.
山田貴洋: 我覺得不管我聽多少次這首歌曲, 都會覺得前奏很有力量. 我認為最後呈現出的節奏變換是無懈可擊的. 組成樂團, 還有伊地加入之後. 我們AKG展開了一連串新的開始, 但是我想這首歌才是我們真正的起頭. 我十分能肯定很多人也是因為這首歌才知道我們的.
我: 遥か彼方是NARUTO火影忍者第一部, 第26話 - 第53話的OP主題曲,
不過想想沒關係啦, 畢竟2002年他們剛出道, 菜得狠...
LIVE版本, 2012武道館, 有HD 1080P
2 "未来の破片", 2003/8/9發行的單曲.
後藤正文: 這首歌曲是在團員們都處在很沉醉、激動興奮的情緒下所創作出來的. 吉他和弦的部分, 沒有使用複雜的和弦, 用了4弦E、A、D、G, 較低音弦的方式; 當時我們一開始彈奏的時候, 覺得聽起來很酷, 所以我們都認為這樣的演奏方法會很有趣.
山田貴洋: 這首歌很壯大. 我指的是歌曲中的音效, 還有樂團在歌曲裡情緒呈現的部分也很棒. 用情緒爆發的方式真的很不錯. 而且這首歌因為用原始情緒的爆發方式呈現, 結果歌曲變得越來越長.(大笑)
伊地知潔: 那時正是我們確立樂團風格的時候. 這首歌正是我們的風格特色. 對我們來說, "遥か、彼方"是一個樂團風格的啟蒙. 我認為這首歌曲受到歡迎的原因, 整體看來是因為歌曲象徵了這樣的風格, 還有樂團的風格.
喜多建介: 我個人認為ゴッチ(後藤的暱稱)的歌唱還有他的聲音非常棒. 我不是說他如何去唱到高音部分, 而是他的聲音每年都在進化. 這首歌他的聲音就不一樣, 而且真的唱出了絕望嘶吼的感覺. 我超喜歡.
p.s若PV影片無法直接播放, 請點選LINK觀看: http://www.dailymotion.com/video/xc22e_mirai-no-kakera_music#.UeaxC403DTo
3 "アンダースタンド(Understand)", 2003/11/19發行的專輯"君繋ファイブエム".
山田貴洋: 雖然這首不是單曲(直接收錄於專輯內), 但一點也不覺得這首歌不該收錄在精選輯裡. 相反地, 這首歌相當受歡迎. 開始現場演唱這首歌曲之後, 我們接到歌迷的熱烈迴響. 現在這首已經是不可或缺的歌曲了. 當時, 這首歌曲是專輯"君繋ファイブエム"最後製作的, 而且是和"自閉探索"一起錄製的. 這倒提醒了我, 那時候我們可以說是同時製作了2首完全不同風格的歌曲.
喜多建介: 我個人很喜歡這首歌曲. 這讓我覺得ゴッチ真的是一個超棒的開頭旋律節奏作曲者! 吉他的重複地方是可以輕鬆演奏的, 所以對於想模仿彈奏的小吉他手可以輕鬆學會.
後藤正文: 我認為的確是有些東西讓這首歌如此特別; 中學生和高校生的吉他小子可以仿奏這首歌曲. 要讓大家都會唱是很重要的, 但如果太過複雜的話, 他們是沒辦法仿奏. 正因這樣的情況, 我們沒有寫過那樣的歌曲. 能作出一首每次表演時都有廣大迴響的歌曲是不容易的, 所以這首歌是"強大的流行歌".
4 "君という花", 2003/10/16發行的單曲.
伊地知潔: 對我來說, 要用4 beat hi-hat的打鼓方式是滿難的. 這也是我第一次被監督喊:"你好遜!". 但是我很感謝這首歌的經驗, 因為造就了我的打鼓風格, 不過真的滿艱難的.另一個方面來說, 我想要把我全部的力量灌注在這首歌曲裡. 那時候日本還沒有其他的樂團鼓手有這樣的打鼓方法, 我們覺得那會很有趣, 便去實行了這個新的想法. 現在似乎4-beat和我們在"リライト(Rewrite)"用的8-beat變成了我們特屬的專利打法. 以上是我的想法, 不過是滿自我的理由.
後藤正文: 這是一種創新. 當我們完成這首歌曲時, 我們全部都覺得"太棒了!". 4 beat hi-hat和high hat的結合後來讓我們創作出了"ループ&ループ(Loop&Loop)". 我沒有特別提到這首歌曲的歌詞, 是因為我有一點對於這首歌詞的情歌意境感到有點不好意思. 我認為如果我想要的話, 我是可以唱情歌的. 這會讓你感到很驚訝嗎? 寫歌的人竟說這些.(大笑)
我: 絕對是神曲來著, 我大愛!大愛!大愛!大愛!大愛!大愛! (不是師姐來著)
5 "リライト(Rewrite)", 2004/08/4發行的單曲.
後藤正文: 這是我們受到"防盜拷CD"啟發所創作的歌曲. 我們那時作了滿多片段的版本, 思考防盜拷CD究竟意味著甚麼, 然後將之賦予一個形象. 老實說我被這首歌曲嚇到, 出乎意料的超級大賣(大笑). 我們沒有馬上將這首歌曲以單曲形式出版. 那也是為何這首歌曲如此神秘. 我們沒有選這首歌, 但這首歌被選中, 而且持續被歌迷口耳相傳出去.
伊地知潔: 這首歌曲被動畫"鋼之鍊金術師"選中, 而且多虧了"鋼之鍊金術師"我們開始在全世界打開知名度. 不過對我來說, 在這之前根本沒有任何改變. 他們說有些歌曲"過於成熟", 因為被表演過太多次, 但是我認為這首歌沒有一點也沒有改變. 過去我們在現場演唱時改變多次這首歌曲的編曲方式, 但是這首歌曲真的有太過強大的潛力了, 而且最後現場的每個人都會專注在副歌部分. 這根本是我們的隊歌, 因為每個人表演這首的時候都會被灌入能量. 這也是每個聽眾聽了這首歌曲之後的反應不會改變的原因.
6 "君の街まで", 2004/9/23發行的單曲.
後藤正文: 這首歌就像是我們使盡渾身解數作出的超合金機器人, 但其實根本只為了作一首流行歌(大笑). 這也是我們辛苦得來的美好果實. 是我們的"アジカン風格". 我們可以在"君の街まで"和"リライト(Rewrite)"這兩首歌裡, 一點也不會感到不好意思得加入屬於我們自己樂團的風格, 因為在那之前我們覺得已有兩首實驗性的歌曲-"サイレン(Siren)" and "ループ&ループ(Loop&Loop)"並領先所有人. 我想為了廣大的歌迷, 把"ソルファ(Sol-fa)"創作成一張流行樂風的專輯, 而且我想要用我們目前所累積的經驗和方式盡全力讓他成為最好的專輯. 當然, 我也想要讓世界好好認識我們アジカン. 為了達到這樣的目標, 我只需要努力做到更完美, 不是嗎?
喜多建介: 這首歌曲也很"流行樂", 但是我喜歡曲子輕快的感覺, 聽了這首歌曲的開頭旋律後, 就像是肩膀上沉重的壓力, 瞬間消失了的感覺. 跟"アンダースタンド(Understand)"和"君という花"這2首歌曲不太一樣. 我覺得アジカン有很多首的開頭旋律都很棒. 雖然我認為這首歌曲的開頭比較簡單, 但開頭旋律也非常棒.
7 "ループ&ループ(Loop&Loop)", 2004/5/19發行的單曲.
喜多建介: 那時我們4個人都覺得我們作了一首非常不得了的歌曲, 雖然我們那時沒有自己的錄音工作室而是使用就近的工作室.我們覺得應該把這首歌曲保留到下一張專輯(大笑). 這首歌我們故意不收錄在"君繋ファイブエム"內, 所以我們對於會收錄在下一張專輯的這首歌非常有自信.
後藤正文: 我們認為如果我們把這首歌放在"君繋ファイブエム"裡會讓專輯賣得太過暢銷. 我們那時想走Emo（情緒搖滾）的路線, 所以我們覺得如果打算要有所突破的話應該是在第二張專輯. 我們的第二張專輯想創作出像綠洲樂團Oasis"Morning Glory"的風格. 先撇開其他東西不談, "ループ&ループ(Loop&Loop)"是一首對我的詞曲創作生涯有很大影響的歌曲. 無論是不是流行樂, "ループ&ループ(Loop&Loop)"都是一首很單純的好歌. 這是我個人的看法. 這首歌也是劃時代的作品. 沒有其他人可以作出一樣的, 而且連我自己也無法再作出一樣的. 這是自"遥か、彼方"、"サイレン(Siren)"和"君という花"之後, 我第一個重大的突破.
8 "ブラックアウト(Blackout)", 2005/6/8發行的專輯(合輯)" ASIAN KUNG-FU GENERATION presents NANO-MUGEN COMPILATION".
伊地知潔: 最初歌曲開始時我聽錯了後藤的指示, 然後鼓打錯了. 不過後藤說"不是這樣, 不過老實說這樣聽起來比較好". 接著我們偷偷地改變了這首歌的拍子(大笑) .那時我們把這稱之為"美麗的錯誤", 但是那個時候我們也用了很多"錯誤"來讓歌曲變得更有趣. 老實說大家都希望有更多的"美麗的錯誤".
後藤正文: 我想那為我們開啟了新的大門. 那正是我們開始更注意旋律節奏的時候, 伊地和我2個人開始去錄音工作室. 我覺得"ブラックアウト(Blackout)"是首好歌曲, 可惜歌迷們沒有引起更多的共鳴(大笑). 我認為對我自己, "表現是一種定時器, 所以如果人們在幾年之後可以理解的話, 那很好. 而現在, 不需要急著去創作充滿活力的歌." 所以我們進入了"ファンクラブ(Fan Club)".
山田貴洋: 副歌的一開始真的很好聽. 是流行樂! 所以我想整首歌就像一首流行樂般得有效.
9 "ブルートレイン(Blue Train)", 2005/11/30發行的單曲.
喜多建介: 這是第一首作曲者有我的名子的歌曲. 我喜歡開頭的和弦. 我想要彈奏那樣的和弦. 在開頭的時候雙吉他來回彈奏是後藤的點子.
後藤正文: 我們樂團那時遭遇許多困難. 我們把備存的歌曲全用在專輯"ソルファ(Sol-fa)"裡了, 所以為了讓樂團能夠持續下去真的感到很大的壓力. 而且那時我們正在創作專輯"ファンクラブ(Fan Club)", 我整個人遭受打擊. 這首歌曲是建介突發奇想的點子, 而且幫這首歌帶來了一盞明燈. 我們想塑造的感覺是XTC樂團的專輯"Black Sea". 所以我們創作了"ブルートレイン(Blue Train)"和"月光", 最後我覺得我們的新專輯即將大功告成.
伊地知潔: 這首歌讓身為鼓手的我, 能力往上提升了. 雖不需要太多打鼓的技巧, 但是我開始在軍樂隊練習, 且多虧了軍樂隊的經驗, 我擊出的節拍讓每個人大為讚嘆. 儘管或許我有時候覺得並不是那麼一回事, 不過歌曲對於鼓手來說就像是張名片,"伊地知潔".
我: 好愛這首歌曲的前奏! 還有後藤的造型
10 "或る街の群青", 2006/11/29發行的單曲.
喜多建介: 這首歌正好是アジカン逐漸從"ファンクラブ(Fanclub)"轉變到"ワールド ワールド ワールド(World World World)"的期間. 我想把這首歌收錄在下一張專輯, 而且我很滿意這首, 部分是因為我們捨棄了在這首歌之前完成的一首歌. 那是一首我很愛的歌. 這首歌在專輯"ワールド ワールド ワールド內的歌曲順序, 是在"転がる岩、君に朝が降る"之後, 不過我真的很想要把那首歌放入專輯內.
後藤正文: 我們稍微分析了一下"ファンクラブ(Fanclub)", 那時也正是我們更往一層樓進步的時候. 我們一直堅持著一些複雜的事情, 像是"我們來做一首長達40分鐘的歌吧". 電影"惡童當街"找了我們洽談主題曲, 所以我們作了這首歌. "或る街の群青"或許是我所極力想創作出的複雜音樂作品, 那也是我想突破的. 也是爲什麼這首歌被創作出來的原因, 這首歌完成之後, 我真的有一股如釋重負的感覺.
11 "アフターダーク(After Dark)", 2007/11/7發行的單曲.
伊地知潔: 就像是我們總算走到了一條很長隧道的終點. 真的像是走過了甚麼一樣. 我們走過了"ファンクラブ(Fanclub)", 還有到達了"ワールド ワールド ワールド(World World World)", 所以從這之後所開始的新旅程, 歌曲的速度變得比較不一樣了. 這段期間, 在最後的時候, 我們有點疑惑. 我們不會用直接的方式讓你看. 如果我們只有一般的副歌, 那會是很直接的方向, 而且聽起來會很酷, 還有旋律的部分會像是鼓和貝斯, 還有一些部分只會令人不安而且也會讓你煩躁(大笑). 但是我們了解這個道理. 我覺得至少我們變得可以更像一個完整的樂團去作.
山田貴洋: 即使當我們嘗試去作某些困難的事時, 我們變得可以去創作出很酷、聽起來很流行, 而且結構強的歌曲. 當然, 歌詞也很正面.
後藤正文: 我認為這或許是專輯"ワールド ワールド ワールド(World World World)"最後所收錄的一首歌. 自專輯"ファンクラブ(Fanclub)"之後, 我們希望創作出有趣多采多姿的作品.
我: 喜歡這支PV帶給我的正面力量!黑暗過後, 是光明!!!!!!!!!!!
12 "転がる岩、君に朝が降る", 2008/2/6發行的單曲.
後藤正文: 這首歌是在我們到處參加夏日音樂祭時完成的. "転がる岩、君に朝が降る", 就字面上來看, 就是滾動的"Rock". 不過是"搖滾樂"的Rock. 而不是"石頭"的Rock! 大概在那同時, 我第一次去了韓國而且我發現, 我從沒想過我們的音樂在海外也有歌迷喜歡聽. 然後我們被韓國的夏日音樂祭邀請, 而且有5,000位歌迷會唱"リライト(Rewrite)". 我覺得真的是見鬼了, 也非常感動. 但也有點感到失落, 因為或許我不會再見到這些歌迷. 不知道是否這就是人生會遇到的, 如果之後還會像這樣的話, 會往何處, 還有未來有甚麼會等著我. 我將這些感覺和情緒全都寫進了歌曲裡. 我第一次把口語"說"的言語文字寫進我的歌詞, 也拉進了我自己與寫詞之間的距離. 以前我壓根沒想過我會寫出"說(口語)"得如此多的一首歌.
伊地知潔: 那正是爲什麼我希望每個歌迷能夠接收後藤的訊息(歌詞). 我們會透過音樂來呈現這些訊息(歌詞).
13 "ムスタング(Mustang)", 2008/6/11發行的迷你專輯"未だ見ぬ明日に".
伊地知潔: 我想起來我們做了滿特別的副歌. 雖然旋律有點改變了, 但我還是很高興. 我覺得我應該可以寫歌, 而且真的開始嘗試, 不過因為真的被批評得很慘然後我就放棄了(大笑).
山田貴洋: 我想要作一首是中板速度的歌, 然後我有一些點子冒出來了. 那點子被ゴッチ放在一開始的前奏. 我喜歡歌曲帶給我的悲傷感.
後藤正文: 最後的副歌部份開始時, 這句歌詞"無くす何かを(失去了甚麼嗎?)", 那真的擊中了我. 這是首非常感性的歌, 包括了歌詞也一樣. 這是當我看了漫畫"ソラニン(Solanin)"之後, 為了迷失的年輕人所寫的歌曲. 舉例來說, 漫畫裡描述音樂社的一部份, 讓我想起了以前的自己, 讓現在的我與過去引起了共鳴. 那也正是為什麼這首歌是有點感性, 讓人容易聯想到以前的回憶. 也很奇妙地這首歌變成了電影"ソラニン(Solanin手拉你)"的片尾曲-"ムスタングMustang(mix for Meiko)".
我:SOLANIN的大愛曲, 是片尾曲, 聽了上百遍, 也是我唯二比較會唱的歌!
14 "藤沢ルーザー", 2008/10/15發行的單曲.
伊地知潔: 後藤不斷寄信給我說他想要來點有趣的東西, 他想要作一些他喜歡的. 所以我拼命想了些點子, 然後我們在藤澤(神奈川縣)露營而且作了這首歌.
後藤正文: 我覺得其他團員願意讓我一起作這首歌是一種獎賞. 因為每個人從專輯"ワールド ワールド ワールド(World World World)"開始到"未だ見ぬ明日に"這段期間, 都已經身心俱疲了. 但我倒覺得"ワールド ワールド ワールド(World World World)"和"サーフ ブンガク カマクラ(Surf Bungaku Kamakura)"這兩張專輯是雙胞胎. 我們需要複雜精巧的東西並且結合在一起, 需要一種更簡單的東西. 比較驚人的是這張專輯"サーフ ブンガク カマクラ(Surf Bungaku Kamakura)"我們給每首歌曲前面加上名子(日本地名). 當我們完成這首歌"藤沢ルーザー"時, 聽起來就像是第一首歌, 還有讓我們產生了身處藤澤市的錯覺. 聽著"藤沢ルーザー", 像是搭著JR跑到這裡. 在3號月台上只有JR. 列車長看著火車從東海道線月台離開, 然後朝著東京方向前進. 有個人放棄去藤澤市工作, 然後搭上江ノ電展開旅程.
我: 絕對是最有趣的PV, 看了便知, 簡單淺顯易懂
15 "新世紀のラブソング", 2009/12/2發行的單曲.
伊地知潔: 我們從"サーフ ブンガク カマクラ(Surf Bungaku Kamakura)"學習到如何作demo帶, 這也成為我們之後的方向. 我開始在自己的家裡作一些節錄的樣本, 並將電腦和設備連結在一起, 然後把吉他的聲音錄音起來, 然後再反著播放之類的. 我真的覺得我們在作這首歌的demo時, 作出了某些完整的東西. 我真的認為那會改變一些事物. 從我想要自己作歌開始, 這真的是一個突破. 從這首歌裡理解到我不應該只是仿效後藤, 而是應該把自己的想法與歌曲碰撞擦出火花. 最後我們真的擦出許多鬥志. 這是我們用這種方法所創作出的一個全新風格, 還有アジカン的全新"手工"作品也在這時創作出來. 這是我們第一次結合多組鼓. 我們也改變鼓設置的位置, 然後用一整天的時間錄音. 最後後藤作出的的效果非常好, 當然歌曲呈現出的意境也非常棒.
我:其實, 第一次聽他們的專輯Magic Disk的時候, 雖然大家都注意到SOLANIN,
16 "ソラニン(Solanin)", 2010/3/31發行的單曲.
喜多建介: 這首歌詞是由淺野一二O原創的(在這首歌之前,全部的歌曲皆是後藤所填詞), 不過我們也被允許可以寫新的歌詞. ゴッチ想要透過大家熱愛原著漫畫的心情描繪出意境, 所以他決定為了淺野一二O的歌詞而作一首曲, 最後作出了超級完美的歌曲. 真的是很棒的歌. 我根本無法用言語來形容.
山田貴洋: 我第一個印象是當ゴッチ讓大家聽這首歌的時候, "每個人都愛上了這首歌". 我重新看見了我們樂團潛在的力量, 因為我們可以輕易得創作出這類型朗朗上耳的好歌曲. 換一種說法, 我認為這是我們從アジカン中所期望看到的.
後藤正文: 重寫歌詞就等同於原創的歌詞不被需要, 所以我不想替歌曲重填詞或重想意境. 唯一我作修改的地方大概只有副歌的部份. 淺野一二O的原創歌詞原本只有一行, "たとえばゆるい幸せが", 我認為這句是連接貫穿整首歌的最重要一句歌詞.
我: 不多說, 在台灣相信很多人知道這首歌曲, 電影手拉你,
17 "マーチングバンド(Marching Band)", 2011/11/30發行的單曲.
喜多建介: 受到311日本的大災難的影響, 我們的巡迴演唱被迫中止, 我們團員自己彼此也無法碰面. 當然更不用說排練音樂 . 我們4個人在4月的時候總算再次碰面和排練, 那真的很有趣. 這首歌比專輯"マジックディスク(Magic Disc)"還來得晚, 雖然我們比較晚做這首歌, 但是想藉著我們想聽到和表達出的聲音, 藉著這首歌來表達311災難那段期間我們的感受.
後藤正文: 男孩象徵我自己, 女孩象徵新一代的年輕人. 我想要回顧反省現在的自己, 然後把鼓勵傳達給年幼的自己-一種最單純的感受. 我現在正處在30世代中間, 不管我喜不喜歡, 湧現了很多情緒出來. 歌曲"光れ、言葉よ"的副歌很能夠表達出我的心境還有我想說的話. 我認為無論是音樂還是繪畫, 就算或許沒有真正的字在上面, 但所有的情感表現都是種語言. 一個人所說的字會引導他們所走的路. 不管說的是甚麼字, 如果很美麗的話, 那也會讓那個人的週遭也跟著變美麗. 那也是爲什麼我想要用強烈又美麗的文字來表達.
Asian Kung-Fu Generation Best Hit AKG interview
1 "Haruka Kanata", from the mini-album "Hokai Amplifier", released november 25, 2002.
Masafumi Gotoh: There may have been times when I had to be emotional to keep living. On the one hand there is the frustration of not getting recognition, and on the other hand there is a feeling of wanting to fight it out in the live venues. For this message to come across in the song, the energy must be direct. This is because I felt the spirit of the times strongly; a nervous way in going about things.
Kiyoshi Ijichi: This is a song from right after I joined. At the time, Asian Kung-Fu Generation didn't have any up-tempo songs. I wanted to add my own flavor that came from my background in Punk and Hard Rock, and I felt that this was the meaning and mission for my joining the band.
Takahiro Yamada: I think about how rugged sounding the intro no matter how many times I hear the song. I think that how the beat changes towards the end was excellent considering how little we knew back then. The band was formed, and Ijichi joined. A lot of new beginnings took place then for AKG, but I feel that this song was our real start. I'm sure that many people "met" us through this song as well.
2 "Mirai no Kakera", a single released August 6, 2003.
Masafumi Gotoh: This is a song that was created out of the emotional excitement that band members were enjoying, without aim or a call for attention. The chord progression is simply the bottom four strings on a guitar, from lowest; E, A, D, and G. When we sang on top of this progression it sounded cool, so we thought that this would be fun.
Takahiro Yamada: The song is huge. I mean the sound packs some volume within itself, and the emotional parts of the band are really embedded in it. This may have been better in terms of an initial impulse. The song got longer and longer because we were creating it in an impulsive way. (laughter)
Kiyoshi Ijichi: This was a time in which each individual's style and the style of the band as a whole was formed. It was our flavor. For us, "Haruka Kanata" was an invention. I think the song was promoted because it symbolized this invention, and the flavor of this band as a whole.
Kensuke Kita: I personally felt that the way Gocchi (Goto's nickname) sang and his voice was really good. I'm not talking about how he can hit high notes, but his voice has changed over the years. In this song his voice was fresh, and he also sounded desperate. I like that.
3 "Understand", from the album "Kimi Tsunagi Five M", released November 19, 2003.
Takahiro Yamada: It doesn't feel like this song is out of place here, although it was not a single. On the contrary, this song's existence kind of takes over. We received great feedback as soon as we started playing this song live. It has now become an indispensable song. As I recall, "Kimi Tsunagi Five M" was a song we made toward the end, and we recorded it with "JiheiTansaku". It intrigues me that we made these two contrasting songs at the same time.
Kensuke Kita: I personally like the melody we use for the bridge. It makes me think that Gocchi was really a superb melody-maker from the beginning. The guitar riff is simple, so that guitar kids can copy it with ease.
Masafumi Gotoh: I think it's actually something that make this song special; that middle school and high school kids can cover the song. It's important that everyone can sing the song, and songs that are so complex they can't be covered do not last long. In these terms, it's a song that we can never write again. It's not easy to create a song that is so celebrated no matter how many times we perform it, and this song is "power pop".
4 "Kimi to iu Hana", a single released October 16, 2003.
Kiyoshi Ijichi: It was so hard for me to do the 4-beat kick drum with the hi-hat as an accent. It was the first time my director yelled at me, "you suck!". I am grateful that this experience was the origin for my current drumming style, but it was difficult. On the other hand, I wanted to do everything in my power to put it in the song. There weren't any bands that were doing this in Japan at the time, and we felt that it would be fun so we spearheaded the idea. Now it's as if this 4-beat and the force of the 8-beat we use in "Rewrite" have become our patents. This is what I think, merely for selfish reasons.
Masafumi Gotoh: This was an innovation. We all thought, "this is great!", when we made the song. The combination of the 4-beat kick drum and high hat later led to "Loop&Loop". I haven't mentioned much about the lyrics of the song, because I'm sort of ashamed that song until this point were love songs. This and "Mirai no Kakera". I think I felt that I could sing love songs if I wanted to at that point. Does this take you by surprise? Well the person who wrote the song is saying this. (laughter)
5 "Rewrite", a single released August, 4, 2004.
Masafumi Gotoh: This is a song we wrote when we were inspired by the angered we felt by the introduction of copy control discs (CCCD).We wrote and scrapped many versions, wondering what this phenomenon meant, and claiming it was an illusion. I was honestly surprised that this song, in which I was being sarcastic, would sell this much (laughter). We had no intention initially to make this song a single. That's why it's such a mysterious song. We didn't choose the song, but the song was chosen, and it kept spreading.
Kiyoshi Ijichi: The song was featured in "Fullmetal Alchemist", and thanks to this we went on to be known world-wide because this animation ignited the Japanese animation culture. But for me, it hasn't changed at all since before. They say that some songs "mature" as they are played countless times live, but I feel like this song didn't change a single bit. There are times we arrange it differently for live events, but the potential of the song is just too overwhelming, and in the end everything gets concentrated in the chorus. This is our anthem, because everybody gets energized whenever we play this song. This is the song for which the reaction of listeners does not change.
6 "Kimi no Machi Made", a single released September 23, 2004
Masafumi Gotoh: This song is like a superalloy robot that we created with all of our special moves we had at the time, in order to make a pop song (laughter). This was the fruit of our efforts at the time. Our "Ajikan style". We may have been able to put our own style out with no shame in "Kimi no Machi Made" and "Rewrite", because before these we felt like we one-upped everybody by having two experimental songs, "Siren" and "Loop&Loop". In other words, I wanted to make "Sol-fa" a pop album for a wide audience, and I wanted it to be the best we could make using the methods we had accumulated until then. Of course, I wanted to show the world what Ajikan was all about too. In order to do this, all I have to do is make things that are advanced, right?
Kensuke Kita: This song is pop as well, but I like the light feeling, like the weight is being lifted off of your shoulders that hits you from the beginning of the song. It's a bit different from "Understand" and "Kimi to Iu Hana". What I felt once again this time was that Ajikan has a lot of songs with good intros. I think this is a simple, yet well made intro as well.
7 "Loop&Loop", a single released May 19th 2004.
Kensuke Kita: This was a time when all four of us felt that we had made an amazing song, back when we didn't have our current studio and were using the local studio. We felt like we should keep this for the next release (laughter). It was a song we intentionally left out of "Kimi Tsunagi", so we were confident that we had a great song in stock for later.
Masafumi Gotoh: We thought that if we put it in "Kimi Tsunagi" it would just sell too much. We wanted to be "emo" at the time, and we felt that if we were going to break out it should be the second album. We wanted to make a (Oasis) "Morning Glory" for our second album. Putting all things aside, "Loop&Loop" is a song that will always have a big impact on my career as a song writer. It's just purely a good song whether or not it's pop. I think that this is individuality. It was epoch-making and an invention. Something nobody else can ever write or compose, and something I myself wouldn't be able to do again. It was one of my first breakthroughs, following "Haruka Kanata", "Siren", and "Kimi to Iu Hana".
8 "Blackout", an album released June 8th, 2005. Asian Kung-Fu Generation presents, "Nano Mugen Compilation"
Kioyshi Ijichi: In the beginning I misheard Goto's phrase at the top of the song, and hit an offbeat. He said, "it's off, but it actually sounds better". Then, mysteriously, we went on to change the beat back half way through the song (laughter). Back then, we were saying that it was a "good mistake", but that was a time that we would use any mistakes as long as they made the song more interesting. We were actually hoping for more mistakes.
Masafumi Gotoh: I think it opened new doors for us. It was a time when we became more aware of rhythm, and Ijichi and I started going into the studio with just the two of us. I felt like "Blackout" was a great song, but it didn't resonate too well with the rest of the world (laughter). I thought to myself, "expression is a timing device, so if people understand it in a few years from now, that's OK. Right now, there's no reason to make an instantly energizing song." That's where we enter "Fanclub".
Takahiro Yamada: I think how the chorus begins is great. It's responsibly pop, so I think the whole song is effective as a pop song.
9 "Blue Train", a single released November 30, 2005
Kensuke Kita: This is the first song for which my name was credited for the composition. I like the chord in the intro. I wanted to use that chord. It was Goto's idea for the guitars in the intro to go back and forth.
Masafumi Gotoh: The band had a lot of worries at this time. We had used all of our stock with "Sol-fa", and really felt the pressure that we had to find a new way to keep the band going. To add to the problems, during the time we were making "Fanclub", my mental health was going down the tube. This is a song that Kensuke came up with the idea for, and it was like light that spread into a song. The image we had was XTC's "Black Sea". At this point we made "Blue Train" and "Gekkou", and I finally felt like we were leading to an album.
Kiyoshi Ijichi: This was a song in which, as a drummer, my stock went up. It didn't require much technical skill, but I started out in a marching band, and thanks to that the beat I struck was praised by everybody. Although I may sometimes think this is not the case, the song serves as a business card for the drummer, Kiyoshi Ijichi.
10 "Aru Machi no Gunjou", a single released November 29th, 2006.
Kensuke Kita: This is a song that was created in a period when Ajikan was gradually changing and transitionning from "Fanclub" to "World World World". I wanted to put it in the next album, and I think it's a satisfactory song for me, partly due to the fact that we completely trashed a song we were working on right before this one. It's a song I love. In the song order for "World World World", it would fall after "Korogaru Iwa" and "Kimi ni Asa ga Furu", but I really wanted to particular about it and had them put the songs in the order.
Masafumi Gotoh: We analysed "Fanclub", and this was at a time when we were moving in a progressive direction. We kept on saying complicated things, like "let's make a 40-minute song". That's around the tie talk of a movie came to us, and we made this song. "Aru Machi no Gunjou" may be the product of my wanting to create a complicated musical piece, therefore escalating my feelings to the point where I was about to break. That's why this song was made, and I began to feel relaxed after this.
11 "After Dark", a single released November 7th, 2007.
Kiyoshi Ijichi: It felt like we finally got to the end of a long tunnel. It really felt like was passed through something. We passed "Fanclub", and got to "World World World", so the speed of the song was different from the initial impact from our starting days. At the end of the day, we are cynical. We won't come at you in a straight way. If we just had normal choruses, it would be straight-forward, and sound cool, and the rythm section is like drum and bass, and some parts are just disturbing and would leave you restless (laughter). But we understand this as we make our songs. I felt like at last we have become able to do this collectively as a band.
Takahiro Yamada: We became able to make cool, pop-sounding, and compact songs even when we were trying to do something difficult. The lyrics are positive too.
Masafumi Gotoh: I think this may be the last song we made for "World World World". It's pretty wide open. There is an intent to make colorful what we cut right out of "Fanclub".
12 "Korogaru Iwa, Kimi ni Asa ga Furu", a single released February 6th, 2008.
Masafumi Gotoh: This is a song we made as we went around summer festivals. "Korogaru Iwa", literally means a rock that rolls. It's rock 'n' roll. It's not "Ishi (stone)"! Around the same time, I went to Korea for the first time and noticed something. I never thought that my music would go overseas. Then, we are invited to a rock festival in Korea, and 5,000 people are singing "Rewrite". I ondered what the heck was going on, and at the same time I was emotionally moved. I also felt sad, because I assumed I wouldn't see these people ever again. I wondered if this was the way life was going to be, if it just accumulated like this, where it would lead, and what was waiting for me in the future. I put a lot of these feelings in this song. I used spoken language for the first time in my lyrics, and this brought me closer to my writing. I don't think I've ever had a song I spoke so much about.
Kiyoshi Ijichi: That's why I want everybody to receive Goto's message. We will support that message with our sounds.
13 "Mustang", from the mini-album "Mada Minu Ashita ni", released June 11, 2008.
Kiyoshi Ijichi: It's rare for a chorus that I thought up to be used. The melody was altered a but, but I was still happy. So, I felt I could write, and started writing songs, but was severely criticized and quit (laughter).
Takahiro Yamada: I wanted an indifferent sounding song with a mid-tempo beat, and brought some ideas with me. That's were Gocchi put that simple intro on top. I like the sadness that it bring about in me.
Masafumi Gotoh: I like the bridge. The part at the end of the chorus where it goes, "Woo.. Nakusu nanika wo", it really strikes a chord in me. It's the most romantic song, including lyrics. It was a song while reading the manga Solanin, and I'm singing about losing our young people. For example, with the part about band club, it synchronized me from the past with me in the present. That's why it became sort of a reminiscent song. It's strange how this ends up being the closing song for the movie, Solanin, as "Mustang (mix for Meiko)".
14 "Fujisawa Loser", a single released October 15th, 2008.
Kiyoshi Ijichi: Goto kept emailing me that he wanted to do something fun, and that he wanted to do something as he pleased. So I hardly gave a thought and we camped out and made this song in a studio in Fujisawa.
Masafumi Gotoh: I think it was kind of a reward for me to be allowed to make this song. Everybody was exhausted from "World World World" and "Mana Minu Ashita ni", but I felt like "World World World" and "Surf Bungaku Kamakura" are twins. We needed both something elaborate and woven together, and something more primitive. The amazing thing about this album is that we gave songs their names as we made them. When we finished this song, it sounded like a first song, and we were in Fujisawa, hence "Fujisawa Loser". The JR train runs there. On platform 3 there is only JR. The protagonist is watching a train headed for Tokyo from the Tokaido line platform. Someone who quit going to work from Fujisawa, and rode the Enoden to go on a journey.
15 "Shinseiki no Love Song", a single released December 2nd, 2009.
Kiyoshi Ijichi: We learned how to create a demo through "Surf Bungaku kamakura", and that's the direction we continued in. I tried sampling in my PC at home linked to equipment to record my guitar, and put it in reverse, stuff like that. I really felt like we had something when the demo for this song was womplete. I really thought this would change something. I think this is a true breakthrough sinc I wanted to make a song that would whange the times, and hit those born in the 200's hard. I felt from around this song that I shouldn't just follow Goto, but that I should put my own ego up front and keep clashing. We really did get into a lot of fights. This is a new style that we created this way, and I think Ajikan's new handwork was created at this time. This is the first time that we combined multiple drum takes. We changed drum sets in the second half, and the recording took an entire day. It went well with what Goto was trying to do, and the mood was good
16 "Solanin", asingle released March 31, 2010.
Kensuke Kita: We had the original lyrics by Inio Asao, but there were no restrictions to keep the song as it was. We were even allowed to write new lyrics. Gocchi wanted to draw from how people liked the original, so he decided to make a song to the lyrics, and did it wonderfully. It became a great song. I can't say enough about him.
Takahiro Yamada: My first impression when Gocchi brought the song was that, "everybody's going to fall in love with this". I was able to rediscover the underlying strength of this band, because we were able to incorporate this kind of catchy vibe quite easily. On the other hand, I also thought it was what they expected from Ajikan.
Masafumi Gotoh:Changing the words would be the same as saying the original doesn't need to exist, and I didn't want to write and imaginary song. The only thing I changed was the order of the chorus. There was one line in the original (although it wasn't in the chorus), "Tatoe Yurui Shiawasega", that I thought was crucial in holding the song together.
17 "Marching Band", a single released November 30, 2011
Kensuke Kita: With the effects of the disaster that hit in March, our tour was cancelled and we couldn't meet up much either. Of course, we couldn't make music properly. When we met with just the four of us in April to play our instruments, it was fun again. Musically, rather than showing what "Magic Disc" would become later, although we made the song much later, we wrote this song with the sounds we wanted to hear and feeling we were felling at the time.
Masafumi Gotoh: The boy is a metaphor for myself, and the girl a metaphor for the young generation. I wanted to look back at myself and send encouragement to my young, innocent feeling. I'm in my mid-30s and whether I like it or not, those emotions well up. The "Hikare, Kotoba yo" in the chorus really represents myself and what words I spell out or just shoot out. I think that whether it's music or a painting, all expressions of feelings are language, even if words are not involved. The words one speaks will lead the way for their path. Whatever the word, if it is beautiful it will make that person and the whole world surround that person beautiful. That's why I wanted a strong and beautiful word.