—— Do you think you think you’ve achieved the ideal you have in mind?
H: Right. It’s also been 15 years since the band was formed, hasn’t it? About what we’d be like now, back then…… we didn’t think about it at all. For example, we played our first gig at Shinjuku’s JAM or something, but we only thought as far as, “Man, I hope we get to play at LOFT next,” (lol) you know? We didn’t think about where we’d be now and somehow…… it doesn’t feel like we’ve grown up, barely. Hey, am I an adult (lol).
—— Hahaha, please don’t pose that question to me.
H: Mm…… I don’t quite feel it, you know. It feels like I’ve gone through a time warp (lol).
—— From 15 years ago? (Lol)
H: Or rather…… The idea of what makes an adult back then…… is completely different, isn’t it? Although, its true that if you look at an old photo, say, from 5 years ago and compare, we’d look completely different and you’d probably even think things like, “Ah, I’ve gotten more wrinkles,” (lol) but it’s not as if we live our lives checking these things all the time, and besides, I’ve still got the same band mates around me anyway. And on top of that, we do the same things, have the same relationships, play the same roles when we drink, laugh about the same things; everything’s the same (lol). There’s something weird about this, isn’t there?
—— Like an island that’s cut off from the outside world (lol).
H: The Galápagos Islands (lol).
—— Have you ever thought something like, “I didn’t expect this would go on so long.”?
H: I did think that it would be nice if we could keep on going…… It happens that just spoke about this with Yuta just now. Like, “We’ve already known each other for 20 years, huh.” Something that was just said out of nowhere. It was shocking and at the same time it really just sank in (lol). I thought, “20 years, right. That’s amazing……”, but there we had Anii still drumming like he always had since the beginning, and Yuta was being Yuta as usual (lol). It got me wondering, “Where are these 20 years?”
H: It’s so weird~.
—— Seems like it happened to someone else instead (lol).
H: No, no, no. I think I would feel that I’ll probably be playing in a band for a long time to come because this is such a cosy place for me to be. Besides, depending on the person, it’s probably not good to spoil them, I think…… all while being spoiled, hahaha.
—— But I find myself wondering what is it that ties you together in such circumstances? Considering that you don’t butt into each other’s affairs.
H: Hm. What indeed…… There’s no particular “something” though…… And, well, when it comes to the music, it’s obviously because I like the sounds that everyone makes. Maybe that’s what.
—— Don’t you want to get a feel of those sounds from somewhere else?
H: I somehow don’t really…… I don’t want to do it unless its BUCK-TICK, you know? Once, I was invited to take part in the recording of ISSAY-san’s solo work but…… I just couldn’t wait to go home (wry smile).
H: But it’s not as if I don’t like recording work itself. My surroundings, like the presence of staff members who I don’t know at all, not seeing the faces who have always been there…… Being there, I felt very uncomfortable (lol).
—— Is it the vibe? (Lol)
H: Mm… I’m not so good at it………… Like, I’m not good at dealing with people I’m meeting for the first time (lol)…… I don’t think I was like that when I was a child, though.
—— So, if you were with BUCK-TICK, you could chat casually, and you’d be at ease.
H: That’s one, for sure. I’m happy, and besides, I’m enjoying myself (lol).
—— You’re definitely the person least likely to be described as distressed or stoic (lol).
H: I don’t really want to work too hard (lol).
—— Whether it’s because of that or not, there’s a reason why Hoshino-san’s melodies and sounds feel so gentle.
H: You know, people say that, but I don’t really know why either (lol). But there was a period of time when the, melodies and whatnot…… people would say that they’re very much my style, and I really hated it when they put it like that, and I was like, “I’m gonna show you a different side instead!” So there was this period when I forced myself to go in a direction that was nothing like my style.
H: Yeah. But then suddenly, it sort of hit me like, “Ah, the best is to go my typical way.” So I made that my brand……or something like that (lol).
—— Is your position in BUCK-TICK a pretty comfortable one?
H: I get very…… Rather, I have a lot of freedom [to be myself] (lol). That’s what I like about it. But if the only songwriter was Imai-kun then maybe…… I might start to feel that even being in a band isn’t much fun because I guess the things I’m required to do would feel prearranged (lol).
—— Ah, so you want to have the space to assert yourself a little (lol).
H: No, not that. The fact that most of my songs are BUCK-TICK’s…… I doubt that’s the case (lol).
—— Ahaha. But it’s true that the band isn’t stuck going in one direction because of Hoshino-san’s presence, right?
H: Yeah. Because I’m making music as it comes to me; I just go with the flow. Without forcing things. Without thinking about unnecessary things. That allows me to make music spontaneously…… Without considerations like what’s trending now, none of that…… Besides, even without all those, [the music] still holds up anyway, and I actually feel that in BUCK-TICK, we can’t [make music] if we’re sensitive to those kinds of things. I definitely don’t mean that we turn our backs on it though.
H: I just feel that we don’t have to think too much about it. As long as we can evolve slowly while swimming in the same tank…… In the end, we’re all in this together. I hope that our bottom line will always stay the same, and…… even if we have our own personal concerns, this is where we can forget about it all, right (lol). That’s why, at this point in time, I don’t know what the future holds, but I’m happy being here. And I’m sure that it’ll stay like this going forward. All the way.