A lot of things have changed for La’veil MizeriA since we talked to them in their first interview ever. They have a new guitarist (who actually turns out to be one of their original members?), several singles under their belts, and their first album “Higyaku-iro no Shuuen” (悲虐色ノ終焉) on the way. In this interview, you’ll learn about the band’s new/old member nazuki, the process for choosing songs for the album, and the many messages that kikyo tries to convey to fans through their music.
-This is our first time talking with you, nazuki. When did you join the band?
nazuki: Last April. I was one of the original members of the band, and then I left, and now I’m back.
-What made you come back?
nazuki: I got sick a couple of years ago. I turned out okay, but after getting sick, I wanted to play music again, and I wanted to play the kind of Kote-kei music that I’d always loved.
-Now there are two members writing songs for the band. Can fans tell the difference between jaki’s songs and nazuki’s songs?
jaki: They seem to. I write pretty simple songs that people say are a bit peculiar.
nazuki: And my songs are a different kind of peculiar.
jaki: His songs are a bit more complex.
kikyo: The vocals are, too. jaki’s songs are easy to remember with a lot of repetition. nazuki’s songs, however, will repeat the same A melody with a slightly different ending. I wonder, “Why did you do that?” a lot. (laughs) It makes them difficult to remember.
nazuki: But I have a reason for that. There are differences in the words that connect the A and B melodies, so it would be fine if I left the A melody the same, but I change it while thinking of that different ending.
kikyo: Also, nazuki’s songs are in a higher key. jaki writes songs in a key that’s easy for me to sing because he’s being considerate of my range, but when nazuki thinks “This song is good,” he’ll ignore my vocal range.
nazuki: But I figure that I can show fans another side of kikyo through those higher keys. I want to challenge him.
-You’re releasing your first full album “Higyaku-iro no Shuuen” on March 20. Could you start by telling us about the album’s concept?
kikyo: It’s about despair.
-All of the songs included on the album aren’t new, correct?
kikyo: Correct. There are five new songs.
-How did you choose which songs to include on the album?
kikyo: We chose songs from our previous singles that weren’t the main song. Normally, bands will put songs that already have music videos onto their albums, but we wanted to try using the coupling songs. We figure fans already know those main songs already.
-So you wanted to bring more attention to the coupling songs?
kikyo: Yes, especially since we play them at our shows fairly often.
-La’veil MizeriA has been together since 2013, but why did you choose now to release your first album?
kikyo: We’ve released 4 singles, so sticking with a typical schedule, this is the right timing to release an album. If we release any more singles before making an album, then the album would become more of a “best of” album. (laughs)
-You released those four singles in a pretty short amount of time. Was that difficult?
jaki: The songwriting part was very difficult.
-What about the album?
jaki: That too.
-Did you at least have a little fun? (laughs)
jaki: I was in a bit of a songwriting slump, so no. (laughs) I was struggling a bit, but I think I came up with some good songs in the end.
kikyo: For me, it was difficult to have to write the lyrics for the 5 new songs all at once. I had to make sure they didn’t all sound the same. I didn’t have much time to write them, either.
-Next, we’d like to hear more about the songwriting and lyric writing process for the new songs on the album. Let’s start with “Shikase.”
jaki: This song is probably the most manic song on the album, and it’s written in a dark key that only certain people will probably like.
kikyo: The lyrics are about how the kind words and nice face people put on is all a lie. In reality, people are dark and only think of themselves. They only say nice things so they can use you.
-Next is “Usubeni no Sou.”
nazuki: This is a sad ballad. The guitar has a clean and non-distorted sound.
kikyo: It’s about death and departure. You can decide who it’s about, whether it be a person or even a dog. Everything that has life will face death.
-What kind of song is “Hiai Saezuru Shirabe?”
jaki: This is a simple MizeriA-style song. It’s a bit crazy and includes shouting vocals that make it a great song for concerts.
kikyo: Simply put, this is a love song about a loved one’s corpse.
-That sounds super 90’s!
kikyo: Right, it’s the kind of setting everyone likes and listens to La’veil MizeriA for. It’s like, “even now, though you’re rotting, we are still dancing together.” I think people should feel that kind of love when connecting to other people. You shouldn’t hate people over little things. It’s insane to say you now hate someone that you loved.
-Even if they do something horrible to you?
kikyo: I think it’s reasonable to feel really bad that something horrible was done to you, but I also think there’s always going to be that part of you that loved that person. That’s why the characters in this song, even though they’re torn to pieces, continue to love each other.
-Next is “Akai Ito.”
nazuki: This is the most poppy song on the album. It’s catchy but it’s the most difficult to sing because it’s in such a high key.
kikyo: This is the ultimate despair. It says, “Your wishes will not be granted because there is so such thing as eternity. There is no such thing as hope.” But if you give up, it’s not as dark as it seems. People who listen to this will probably compare it to the experience of falling in love, but for me, it’s about bands. We are dreamers but we’ll never see them realized.
jaki: We do have fun, though.
kikyo: And as for our fans, we want them to live keeping this reality in mind. Because there is no eternity, let’s treasure the now. It’s actually a kind of positive message in the end.
-What about “Zetsubou-kyo?”
nazuki: I wrote this song with concerts in mind, making it easy to headbang and go crazy to.
kikyo: In our industry, there are a lot of rules that people pass off as things that are correct. This song says that those rules are bullshit. I think you should do what you want. In the lyrics is the phrase “If you feel strangled and struggle, kill God.” The paradise we imagined this world would be actually isn’t paradise at all.
-What about the SE tracks, “Shuuen” and “Rinne?”
miria: It’s…about…doors. “Shuuen”…is clumsy…and makes you…uncomfortable. At the end…of “Rinne”…a door opens. It makes you…loop back to…the opening track…”Shuuen.”
nazuki: On most albums, the door would open in the first track, but by putting it at the end, you loop back to the beginning.
miria: You can’t…escape…despair.
kikyo: The door stays open. It never closes.
-Your 47 prefecture-wide tour is starting soon. Is this your first time as a band to do a tour on this scale?
-Are there any areas in particular that you’re looking forward to performing in?
-The dates for this tour aren’t written as taking place in 2019, but in 1999. We think this is because you’re keeping in line with your 90’s concept, but we’re curious: what will next year be? 2000?
kikyo: What should we do next year? If it’s 2000, that’s the decade that our Kote-kei style started to go out of fashion. We could go forward to 2000 or go back to 1990.
-So it could loop like your album.
-When we last interviewed you, you had just joined Starwave Records. What has changed the most since joining them?
kikyo: We’re able to release more CDs. I’m glad we can leave something behind.
-Finally, please give a message to your fans and our readers at S-T.net.
miria: Come to…our lives…in spirit. We want to…tour overseas…if we have…the chance.
jaki: You can listen to our music around the world, so even if you don’t understand the words, just feel our sound.
nazuki: Since you can listen to us even outside of Japan, please listen to our album a lot and get a taste of despair.
kikyo: We will not let you down. Bands may change a lot, but we have a consistent goal with our music. Don’t worry about that with us. So listen to our music, save up your money, and come see us.
Tags: La'veil MizeriA