Perfume Interview from –Ongaku to Hito-
-So, when did you guys record your new single, One Room Disco?
A: When was it? In January, maybe??
N: Yeah, it was in this year.
A: Oh, no no no. It was last year.
K: Last year??
A: Yap, it was last year. We were too busy to remember things (lol).
-How did you feel about this song when you listened to first time?
N: I thought the main melody was pretty sound. It sounds like Capsule in back of the days. They influence Mr. Nakata.
A: I really liked it! Sounds cool!!
K: My first impression was that this song is very simple. There was no intro in first time, actually. It was very peaceful and calm sound like in spring. This song, however, had changed a lot when Mr. Nakata finished up this song.
-How do you feel when you hear the word, One Room?
N: I could easily express this song because I felt exactly like this song’s lyrics when I moved to Tokyo. We did have an individual bedroom, but it was so small. That is my strongest images in this song.
A: My neighbors called this dormitory, a jail, but earthquake resistant system was perfect (lol).
A: That dormitory was a defective home (lol). We thought we gonna die if big earthquake hit around neighbor. There was some chap on the wall outside, but we thought it was design of the dormitory (lol). So, we were always making ready for disasters.
N: Yeah, we collected every single item for that.
A: (lol), yeah. Water, flashlights…
K: A crazy noisy alarm too (lol).
A: We wrote how to escape from this dormitory on the board (lol).
N: I may chicken out at the last moment and I may not even be able to scream, so I put a flute a bec on the side (lol).
-What a crazy memory (lol).
K: But I was very happy that I could have my own room. I remember I took pictures of my empty room and sent them to my mom by e-mail.
-What Kind of image do you have in the word “Disco”?
A: Oh, I actually didn’t know what the word means and I asked them. It’s like “ Jingle, Jingle, Jingle, Jingle, Jingle, OOOHH♪.
-That sounds like Juliana (90’s Japanese Club Music)
A: It’s more likely “ You can dance~♪” kind.
-You mean ABBA…
A: I think everyone has their own images of “Disco”. So, I hope this song can have many images.
- Did Mr. Tanaka say something during the recording?
N: He was bragging his lyrics.
A: He told us you can forget about music a little bit but not musc.
-The coupling song, “23:30”. This song contains very reality lyrics for you guys like the other song, “Negai”.
K: Mr. Nakata…. What are you thinking? (lol)
N: I know. Why does he make us sing this kind of songs?
A: It’s kinda embarrassing, isn’t it?
K: It’s like “we feel so sentimental”
N: I know. Because we say “Love me”. It’s “Love me” not “I love you”. It’s too sexy.
A: But I’m not singing the song thinking so.
A: Because we have to memorize the lyrics and sing it ASAP. So, we always don’t have time to look at it. If I try to read and deeply understand the lyrics, I always want to make it mine, and its not the way perfume sings. But when I read the lyrics once more, they are kinda deep.
-They are deep indeed. The song, “Negai”(Wish), is not like “Dream” or “Longing”, and it seems very close to your life size.
N: Yes, we are not 9th graders. We are 20.
A: I am not 20 yet. I can’t imagine.
K: Your birthday is day after tomorrow. (lol)
-About the lyrics, do you feel that it is actually changing around you?
K: Yes, I do. I became to be able to understand and express the lyrics more. For instance, when I was in an actor’s school, I was singing about love, but I can express love more now. I didn’t know what really love is back in the days. I do express not only happiness in love, but also some sadness, or pain in it.
-You are growing up then.
A: If we were still very young group in age, we might not be able to express enough about the song.
-Do you having fun with changing like that?
K: Yes, we widen our styles. For instance, we are singing about hopeful song like “Dream Fighter,” and we are singing about very little things, which everybody has experienced in life, like song called “One Room Disco,” “23:30.” That is because we are able to sing more than one genre now.
N: Yes. Not only singing, but also dance.
A: Thanks to the staff, we are growing up and changing positively.
N: So, sometimes I feel that some songs don’t sound like Perfume still, like “Negai.”
A: I love that song!
N: Me too!
-(lol). You guys sound like somebody else’s problem. Well, your live performance in Yoyogi is coming. How you feel about that?
N: We are so excited about that. During the meeting, we are giving a lot of suggestions, which we want to do. I wanna surprise audience! Not only performance but also staging, including light!
K: You’ll be amazed once you saw us in Yoyogi (lol).
-A lot of stage effects too, I guess.
K: Maybe (lol). And I want this concert to make audience feel that they don’t wanna go home.
A: You’ll see only us on stage this time too. The stage is huge, but only us. So, I don’t wanna the stage look empty.
N: I wanna enjoy concert with 25,000 people as a big family.
-You guys have specific visions and things you want to do as Perfume now.
A: Yes. We were hesitating to say our opinions bygone days. But it’s different now. Saying and trying new things make Perfume’s level up.
K: We are learning and growing positively, slowly but surely.
-Don’t you think that the concert at the Budoukan and Kouhaku in last year was one of the most important events to mark the start of a new phase of your career?
N: Yes, Budoukan and Kouhaku were our big goal. We; however, are ready to go to the next level.
-How do you feel about those concerts?
N: It was very succeeded. Especially after Budoukan, I had a feeling kind of absent-minded, but gradually I got my motivations back. Next concert is at Yoyogi. Our staff always set specific goal for us, so that we don’t have to get lost.
-How do you think you have changed after going through those experiences?
N: Hmm… I just noticed I do not think too much about the things. I get easily nervous when I start thinking.
-Is that meaning you sometimes doubting yourself that you are actually in the entertainment world?
N: Yes. I sometimes feel weird when I am working with one of my favorite comedian, Daisuke Miyagawa. Before I start being happy about it, I tend to analyze myself with calm-attitude. When I see A-CHAN and KASHIYUKA are happy for my work, I am pleased about myself obediently.
-I think that means you start feeling a sense of responsibility stronger than before.
N: I guess so. I sometimes wondering why am I dress in disguise in private time.
-How do you think when you listened to “23:30,” or “Negai”?
N: I thought those songs don’t sound like Perfume. I love the song called “Macaroni,” I was so happy when I listened to this song. I also thought that Mr. Nakata tried us to express more grown-up Perfume.
-How did you feel when you actually performed those songs?
N: I was really sympathized by lyrics. “23:30” is the time right before the new day is coming… It is the last minute we can take the last train in that day…
-Do you see yourself in those songs?
N: Well, I do not feel that exactly yet, but I think that I am getting older slowly but surely. But my image is that we are always on the same ship. We are on Mr. Nakata’s ship now, so I don’t think we are changing. I just hope we are not stopping or changing. I wanna keep feeling how I feel right now.
-How do you think Perfume’s “right now”?
N: The most important things for us is that having fun with three of us always. I do not want to do concert; which has sad or empty feeling. It is not about how many audiences are coming, but the voltage of fan’s and ours. I wanna keep singing as long as I feel those voltages.
-So, you need to feel fan’s voltages during concert.
N: Yes. Our stage is getting bigger, and it makes us keep distance from audience. I feel sad about it; however, I always feel high voltages and powers from audience every time. I love when I taste a sense of unity with audience during the concerts.
-Do you feel you are learning from every single experience?
N: Yes I do. 9 years have passed since Perfume was born. …Wow, if I was not in Perfume, how was I going to be? …Japanese gang maybe (lol)
N: Yeah… But I love how I am right now. I; however, am trying not to forget the normal sense… I mean, I am trying not to become a diva or to be excited too much. I just wanna concentrate on “right now.” I don’t want to regret anything. I don’t want to look myself back, and also I do not want to guess or see my future. Now is the most important and best time for me.
-Have A-CHAN and KASHIYUKA changed since 8 years ago?
N: I guess so… Do I sound like a big person (lol)? Well, since we are always together, I don’t know honestly, but they are grown-up.
-When do you feel like that?
N: They are very responsible; they can say their opinions. They are very caring about family and people around them.
-I think you have changed in that way too.
N: Not really, because I haven’t sent the birthday e-mail to my dad. But I will.
-So you don’t feel how you have been changed?
N: I am gaining responsibility and confidence little by little. I feel more comfortable to communicate with people. I’m not scared anymore. I wonder if it’s coming from confidence.
-I see. I remember you told me that you don’t like to talk to people that much.
N: Yes, but I don’t feel like that anymore.
-Why did you wanna sing in front of people even though you were afraid?
N: I didn’t have confidence, so I couldn’t make decision or anything. Now; however, I realize these opportunities get me out of my shells.
-So you think Perfume gives you the chance to break out of your shells?
N: I think so. It is encouraging that I have 2 great friends with me, especially A-CHAN helped me so much.
-How did she help you?
N: She is the person who can find others’ charm points and bring them out. Also she understands me very much. I didn’t have courage and I didn’t think I have a talent before I met A-CHAN. Now, I feel relief on the stage.
-So, you mean you can see yourself more because someone needs you?
N: I think it’s very important to be conscious about that for anything.
Perfume Interview from –Ongaku to Hito-
-How do you turn around for the last year?
A: It was very high-flying year for us. We achieved our several goals, and I think more people got to know about us. Some people, who don’t know member’s name, call us as a position when we are singing, like “middle, right and left (lol).”
-(lol). How did you feel right now after you achieved your goals?
A: I was just happy, but also I couldn’t believe it. It’s like unrealistic. We have been spending a difficult and challenging time for 8 years. In that time, it was very difficult to gather up 100 audiences. Now, however, 10,000 people come over to our concert. It’s just a big step for us, and I was just touched by every single success we experienced in last year. I cried a lot (lol). I just realized that some people just cry when they cannot express a big happiness.
-Have you got confused or anxious because of that big success?
A: Well, we usually do not see our plans very clearly. If we saw our future too clearly, we might get anxious or fear, but this fact worked well to us for now. I didn’t get any negative feelings like that. That is why we just enjoy ourselves during concerts, even if it is in Budoukan.
-Wow. So, do you thing it is actually the stuff or environment, which is changing, but not you guys.
A: Yes. I started feeling this from “love the world,” Our basic style about music is not changing, but people around us are changing positively, like a magic.
-I guess I am one of them who had been enchanted (lol).
A: (lol). Yeah, same team always performs our music. The only thing, which had changed for us, is a heavily made-up face (lol). It’s been 8 years… The way of seeing things might be changed personally, but not as a team. I am very glad when people said that they like our old tunes, simple because it means that our activities and music has get recognitions.
-Do you feel responsibilities and confidence when you receive recognitions?
A: You are absolutely right. Our staffs, however, are trying to be nice about it because they do not want us to feel too much responsibility. We are just being very careful about the things we cannot say on TV (lol).
A: We sometimes do make a slip of the tongue… scary…(lol).
-But don’t you just realize your situations or positions now, because of those experiences?
A: Yes, we do. We, however, are very scary to break our stances or positions up.
A: Yes. We are trying to do new things though, including costumes and dances. We are trying to express more feminine dance on the song called, “Take me, take me,” during the live. We were too young to do that bygone day, but now, we look not bad. So, changing is scary for us, but I guess we are trying new things little by little.
-So you are saying that you want to accept some changing, which is caused by age-appropriate.
A: Yeah, but not too much. We always wanna be just Perfume, the people or fans want us to be. If people like our style now, we just gonna keep doing that. If people became to dislike our style, I guess that is the time for us to make some new action. We just wanna keep doing our best every single time.
-Do you feel more that you want to be needed by people?
A: Yes, that is my style now. If we were doing music for just our ego, we wouldn’t get more audiences like now. For example, if I wrote some lyrics, some my fans would like it, but I don’t think I can write good lyrics as Mr. Nakata does, and not many people gonna like it. Very hard core fans, maybe. So, I would like to do my best for everything that is needed by others, and I wanna bring an end to the expectations. We have experienced the time that we didn’t be needed for a long time. So, if people become to be interested in us, I wanna do anything for that. It is very strong part in my heart.
-Well, I think you are doing great job on that.
A: I’m glad to hear that. I’m on the front page today too. I’m very happy but I don’t know what to do. I was thinking too much about it last night, and I finally went to bed at 3 a.m. and woke up at 6 a.m. in the morning…
-Poor sleep (lol).
A: I was so nervous. I would like to do my best for people who need us. I can have an appreciation to anything and anyone more than before, because we’ve been through so many tough situations. I believe that I have different experiences compare to other girls, who are same age as me.
-Again, I’m proud of you because you didn’t go wrong.
A: Yeah (lol). I was either stupid to know or I was just so happy to be with Nocchi and Kashiyuka. I was not that greedy to be famous.
-Is the reason you are more concentrated on the live concerts more than TV because you wanted to feel that you are needed?
A: Maybe so. I’ve been looking up to SPEED (a Japanese Singer Group), because they were top of idols. But I just noticed that music is the way to communicate people strongly by having more experiences. Then I was really happy that people loved me through music.
-So you actually feel stronger relationship between you and people.
A: Yes. They keep supporting me and I never felt like this. It wasn’t a fake, but real. So, today’s Perfume are made of appreciation to all people who supports us.
Perfume Interview from –Ongaku to Hito-
-Did you have an enough break during a new year?
K: Yes, But now I feel I want to work more (lol). We were very busy for the end of the last year but we had more time to take a rest and working was slow during January and February. I was happy that I could relax but was worried at same time. I got nervous thinking what if we couldn’t get busy anymore (lol).
-So, you are still worried.
K: Of Course! I think I’m thinking that way recently because I just don’t want to have a big head. So, this feeling makes me keep working hard, I guess. I should have that kind of alarm.
-So, that’s how you are controlling yourself.
K: Yes. My mom always says “You are always cliff-hanger”. She said, “ You have to work harder because you guys are about to fall off!” So, I think I cannot forget hunger spirit to go up.
-So, it was a good lesson when you are not famous.
K: Yes, to have confidence always is one of my biggest goals always. I learned that I couldn’t be afraid of making mistake because we’ve done a lot of big things.
-Are you more confident and feel more responsible than worried.
K: I think so, because we cannot go forward if we are worried too much. We’re not writing lyrics or composing music, so we have to do what we can with faith. We became stronger; we’ve changed for one year. We have stronger sense of making fans happy and we are serious. Because I don’t wanna regret, we’ll do our best.
-So, people around you actually have big influence to you.
K: Yes. There are so many talented people than me out there, but everyone has a confident, and they have their own unique characters. I, however, was asking myself what I am unique for, and the answer didn’t come up easily. So that is why I just wanna do my best for everything to be confident. That is my responsibility to stand on stage as a member of Perfume.
-More than before.
K: I was still doing my best before, but it was not enough, I guess. Since people love themselves a lot, I was making a lot of excuse back then, but not now.
-You are strict to youself.
K: Things has to be changing, and I don’t wanna be off-balance when it comes. I can move fans by doing live performance, but I don’t have enough strength to make new things by myself. So at least I would like to have more knowledge and be able to have my own ideas.
-Is that your thing now?
K: Yes, I would like to have creative ideas with good reasons.
-I think you became more…
-(lol). Do you think A-Chan and Nocchi became more matured too?
K: I think so. We can think what we should do and what we need to do as Perfume.
One of our most important things as Perfume is that we should feel and know Mr. Nakata’s song, and express perfectly. We, however, can express our individual unique characters in music videos, make-up, costumes, and live performances.
-Those things bring you a big responsibility.
K: You are absolutely right. So, it is almost impossible to kill our anxieties completely (lol), and it is very difficult to be confident. I sometimes still go crazy like what should I dooooooooo (lol).
K: I am always doing evaluations by myself at home…alone…(lol).
-But at least you are thinking about your past, future and right now.
K: Bygone days, I was just think too much and stuck with it for a long time, but I am trying to be more active on it these days. After I turned into 20 years old, I’m trying to go out more often and talk to people. Oh, yeah! Did I tell you I am a big fan of Fuji-kun, the vocalist in the Japanese band “Bamp of Chicken”?
-Yeah, I heard that 100 times (lol).
K: I met him!! At my friend’s birthday party! I was soooooo happy!!!
-What did you talk about?
K: I asked him, what’s on your mind when you are writing music? What a serious and deep conversations, even though we are just met (lol).
-(lol). Talking to new people make widen your life visions.
K: Yes. Everybody has their unique view about life and obsessiveness, and I am double realized that is why they are touching people.
K: I was thinking about my strongest part, which cannot be taken or nonnegotiable, and I couldn’t think about it. But I have a very strong feeling that I wanna be one of the Perfume members. That is my strongest part in my life.
-Your strong love for Perfume like that brings you favorable attitude, I think.
K: I hope so. That is why I am concentrating on work harder after Budoukan. Now, we come to recognition, and I do not wanna lost myself or position for this reason. I want to see and analyze myself as KASHIYUKA in Perfume, as Yuka Kashino in person, just 20 year’s old woman. That is very important to me right now to know about myself more.
-And you keep growing up.
K: Yap! I’m doing good on that now(lol).