Before their set on the stage of Special Edition in Dordrecht G.L.A.M.S found some time to sit down for an interview. And I have to admit that this interview was quite hard for me to make questions wise, because I know these guys are a bit too good in answering questions! They give so much information that you don’t have anything you want to ask as a follow up, but since this interview was a special request from the guys towards me, I did my best anyway!
You’re currently on tour to promote the new “TWILIGHT AFTER THE RAIN” album. An album that has it’s pre-release during this tour, but most people coming to the shows only heard “In Endless Rainfall” and “Another Lonely Day”. How did the audience respond to your new songs when you played them live?
Mikaru: Especially with “In Endless Rainfall” the fans have been great. This song is intended to be sung together, and I feel like they’ve listened to my music very well, and it made me very happy.
Tetsuto: My answer is almost the same, but “In Endless Rainfall” is supposed to make them sing, so we’ve created the song to be this way. Another one is “Unbreakable Chain”. We have this image for the chorus, and when the song reaches the chorus I’m very happy to see their reactions to it.
Yudai: I wrote the basics for “In Endless Rainfall” and “Another Lonely Day”. For “In Endless Rainfall” I imagined the opening of a show, and it worked perfectly for the image I had. We’ve actually played “Another Lonely Day” during the last tour. The song has grown up and we’ve finally been able to make it official for this CD. It’s also the most emotional song for me.
Syu: I’m going to talk the other new songs, like “Sailing Away”. During the last European tour we’ve already played this song as well, but this time the audience had a better response to it. “Tokyo Ginza Blues” is a new style for G.L.A.M.S, and we are planning to make another music video, this time for this song. So you can expect this one in the future!
02. In these new songs you’ve used a lot more English than you did in previous songs. What made you decide to go for English instead of your native language of Japanese?
Mikaru: There are two reasons. One is to make it easier for everyone to understand the words of the song, and the other is to make it possible for everyone to sing along during the show. Yes, these are the two reasons.
03. The themes you’ve used for these songs are quite “heavy”, and most people will be able to relate to them and the feelings that come with those themes. What made you decide to go to these themes rather than something “lighter” than the true freedom theme of “Sailing Away”?
Mikaru: “Sailing Away”… I think I wrote this song in the sense of life being like a journey. Everything in life is determined by your own choices. You should never regret that choice. In fact, I hate the word “regret”. Regret means that you are not responsible for your choice at that time. You don’t believe in yourself. I want you to believe in yourself. Life is created by every single one of your choices in the moment. In that sense we are free. So don’t tie yourself or your journeys. That’s the image of these songs as a whole.
04. During our last interview in Dordrecht you said you see G.L.A.M.S as a full on band rather than your personal project with support members. But how does that work behind the scenes? Does every member bring ideas to the table for their own instrument, or entire song ideas as a whole, or is it mostly your initial ideas and them adding to it?
Mikaru: The final decision is of course made by me. But when I am making a song I listen and use their ideas to make these songs better. I believe in their talents.
05. Most fans will know about Mikaru’s bunnies Lili and Mimi, but he’s not the only pet owner now is he? You also have a pet, a cat named Rin. What is it like being on tour and not being able to see your pet after work?
Yudai: I feel very lonely. She loves to sleep with me. So every day when I go to bed she will sleep on my legs together with me. I take so many pictures of her every day, I think about her all the time, day and night. We have a happy life together. I love the tour, but I do miss her and I am sure she misses me too. But right now I get a lot of updates and photos from her while I am on tour here.
06. I heard that you’re also a fan of drinks, next to your love for music. So let’s talk about that for a moment. Here in Europe there are a lot of different countries which each have their own dishes and cultures. Were you looking forward to a certain country, drink or dish? Is there something here in Europe that you really miss when you are in Japan?
Mikaru: Rabbit? (laughs)
Yudai: Cat? (laughs)
Tetsuto: Yeah. Almost the same. (laughing as well)
Syu: People? (everyone laughing some more)
Tetsuto: I want to drink wine in each place I visit. I’m really enjoying the tour, but for me The Netherlands is the number one.
Arlequin: Are you sure you’re not just saying that because you’re currently in The Netherlands, doing this interview with me right now? (laughs)
Tetsuto: (laughs) No, no! It’s from the bottom of my heart! I really want to stay in Europe. I don’t miss anything from Japan!
07. Next to G.L.A.M.S you’re also active as a support member for Alpha999 and David, and your life really seems to revolve around your passion for music. But what started this passion? What made you pursue a career in music as a drummer?
Syu: First of all, I want to say thank you for the interviews with Alpha and David as well. But regarding me, this is what I wanted for a really long time. Each musical project and each style and each world are always interesting for me. Recently I’m sharing the stage with a lot of different musicians, and they all inspire me. My passion is getting more and more fired up recently. I’m sure this can make and keep me motivated and make my career grow, but I can also grow as an artist as well.
08. You’ve all been to Europe for several times now, and seen quite some of the countries here. Before this tour started, was there something you really looked forward to? Like which country/city did you really want to go to, or something you really wanted to see? Why? And did you get to?
Mikaru: I have always wanted to walk around in Prague. And this time this dream came true. It was a very beautiful city. I want to travel to Prague next time as well.
Tetsuto: I have been looking forward to coming to The Netherlands again. The first oneman show we had as G.L.A.M.S here was in Den Haag, and that was very impressive for me. During the last tour, when we played in Dolhuis in Dordrecht here, we went to the church as well. This time there are a lot of things happening due to the Corona virus and stuff, but I’d really like to walk around in The Netherlands someday.
Yudai: I’m looking forward to every country, because they’re all interesting to me. Prague as well. I walked around in Dordrecht a bit today as well, I went to see the church again. So every country is interesting to me. The most interesting place has been Prague though, it was such a beautiful town.
Syu: During my career here in The Netherlands we’ve visited Amsterdam and Utrecht for shows with Dio, we’ve had a show with Black Line in Utrecht as well, and with G.L.A.M.S it has been Den Haag and Dordrecht. I’m interested in seeing other cities, but also for having shows there. And of course sightseeing in general. My favorite character actually is Nijntje, so I’m also curious about Dutch characters and cities. I have seen many things, but I really need more time!
09. Even though you’ve just released a new album, what does the future of G.L.A.M.S look like? Will you continue on this “movie soundtrack” road, or would you like to try something completely else for your next release in the future?
Mikaru: I just make what I want to make. I will never change until I die. So I am looking forward to what songs will be born next!
10. And as a final question, is there something you’d like to share with everyone reading this interview?
Tetsuto: I want to say “hoi” to everyone. But also “hallo” and “nice to meet you”. And of course, come see us someday! That’s what I want to say for now.
Yudai: Please enjoy the new album. These crazy five songs. I had a new crazy idea for new songs yesterday, so please look forward to it! See you next time!
Syu: Right now the situation in the world is very complicated, as you know. With this tour in particular we’ve had a lot of problems, even before the tour started. But we are here now, and so are you. We can go together, see you soon!
Mikaru: Share. Share. (everyone starts laughing as Mikaru puts up his demonic voice) SHARE. Well well well. SHARE. You know. You already know what I want. HMMM… (Mikaru growls) Wait. In bed… I want you to share… Your blood! I want your blood! (everyone still laughing) Give me… Blood! (by this time everyone is in stitches)