-moi dix mois-
-eve of destiny-
Malice Mizer and Klaha Interview - Fool's Mate 01/01
Translated by Kurai
~reunion with the blood relative charmed by the rose~
It has been a quick three months since Malice Mizer, having fulfilled their revival with the addition of new vocalist Klaha, performed an emotional concert at the Nippon Budoukan. Since then they have kept their silence about the band, but finally, today, they talk for us. Their encounter with Klaha, their heavy concept album "Bara no Seidou," and their revival concert which showed their entire world... now, all will be revealed. With their new live video/DVD release too, as they turn towards the future and once again begin their activities, we ask about their upcoming expectations in this full member interview.
--Its the first time we've had the four of you in Fool's Mate. First off, please introduce the new vocalist Klaha.
Mana: He has a composed calm to him... he projects a deep, dignified voice. Inside that voice is illusion.
Közi: I had thought his voice had a unique quality to it since I saw him perform live with his old band.
--It seems that you actually have known each other for quite awhile. Originally Klaha was in a different band, but were there any common musical features between it and Malice Mizer?
Közi: There was something of a familiarity between them. The shape and form of the music was different, but in a fundamental way I think there was a closeness.
--Could you explain that closeness in detail for us?
Közi: Both had this "dark obscurity" to them... umm.. its hard to explain (laughs)
--You thought he wasn't just another dumb, silly guy?
Közi: Yeah, his atmosphere.. scent.. even when we first met him we felt "this person is different."
--Klaha, what do you have to say about that?
Klaha: Definitely at that time, what my band was doing was different from the surrounding scene.
--As opposed to being a hot-blooded, zealous vocalist I get more of a cool image from you. By the way, did Klaha personally have any common musical interests with Malice Mizer?
Klaha: Before I joined Malice Mizer I often borrowed videos and stuff from Yu~ki.
--A pleasant exchange.
Klaha: I didn't often recommend him things, but if there was a cd I wanted to hear or a video I wanted to watch he would show me at a good time.
--Well, it looks like you had a relationship going from the beginning. When did Klaha have the chance to join Malice Mizer?
Mana: On a song in "Bara no Seidou", "mayonaka ni kawashita yakusoku", I though a male vocalist would be really good.
--When did you discuss doing that?
Mana: I don't remember.
Yu~ki: I don't remember...
Közi: I don't remember clearly what month it was.
Mana: I don't pay much attention to normal everyday dates.
--But you don't remember details like "when we recorded that song I was wearing a short-sleeve short"?
Mana: I don't wear short-sleeve shirts. (laughs)
Közi: We don't have any sense of the seasons, you know.
Klaha: I somehow remember when it was.
--Ah, as we would expect from Klaha! Around June?
--Ah, sometime in the early half of this year. So, when did you start rehearsing with Malice Mizer for the actual recording?
Klaha: Actually, it was all really sudden.. (laughs)
Közi: Yeah, cause this album feels like we composed the songs as we recorded them.
Klaha: It was like as soon as a song was finished I had to sing on it.
--But the album sounds like you had a lot of time to compose everything...
Közi: It wasn't like that at all!
--Well, you definitely have different arrangements unlike normal rock bands, and choirs and stuff. So to suddenly sing on those types of songs must have been very difficult?
Klaha: Well, to the extent that we had a fundamental, mutual understand of our aims, I just took it with that attitude.
Mana: We didn't have lots of time and so the cd is full of spontaneity. The songs in the album took our utmost concentration.
--And yet, didn't the recording and organizing of your Nippon Budoukan live both happen at the same time?
Mana: First off, before we released the single "saikai no chi to bara", as we were refining our organization of the album, we knew there would be a trilogy of three singles so we decided our stage would be three-tiered as well. So as we gradually built up the story concept the idea of the great sanctuary arose. About the stage of the Nippon Budoukan, we knew for sure that we wanted to construct that sanctuary there. Actually, to build that kind of large structure the Nippon Budoukan is the only place we could choose.
--When I watch the video/DVD that you recently released, "bara ni irodorareta akui to higeki no makuake," I can see Malice Mizer's on-stage atmosphere anew. With the very dark lighting and sharp, sudden staircases, it seems like a very dangerous stage. It's amazing that you could walk up those stairs with high heels on.
Mana: But since the rehearsals I had been wearing heels to get used to it. I wore normal clothes during rehearsals, and only my shoes were part of the actual performance.
--When you watch the video yourselves, are you 100% satisfied with the performance?
Mana: Hm, I don't know what the standard is for 100% but I think we accomplished what we should have. Yet when its all over, various problems still arise, and I want to tie all those together next time. Even now we are in the midst of our artistic career, so there will always be problems.
--Also, I was very surprised at the darkness of the lights used on stage.
Mana: The image is of a sanctuary rising in the fathomless darkness, you know. (laughs)
Közi: We did it..but when I saw the video I thought "man this is dark!" (laughs)
--But even if you light up the sanctuary it was still too dark.
Közi: Not exactly.
Mana: Cause I can see well in the darkness.
--Uhhh... (pained laughs)
Közi: But Klaha and I did get lost backstage. (laughs) The backstage was even darker, and it was like we had to run around and change outfits quickly. The passages too were horribly complicated and there were wires all over the place.
Klaha: It was like a beast's path.
Közi: It was a pathless path, really. (laughs)
--But you didn't get hurt or anything.
Közi: I sprained my foot and stuff on stage.
--No way, I couldn't tell at all.
Közi: Well, It seems there were a lot of people who noticed. In letters people wrote things like "are you ok?" and "did you fall?". It was really dark you know. (laughs)
--Could you see the state of the audience?
Mana: I could, cause I have really good eyes.
Mana: I saw everyone's faces.
Közi: We saw everything surprisingly well.
--Ah, the darker the stage is, conversely, the easier it is to see. Normally there are spotlights on stage so you can't see the audience right. So, what did you think of the audiences reactions? Around me everyone was silently, fixedly watching.
Mana: For Malice Mizer, the way people feel the music is up to them.. they don't have to get all into it, and I think everyone can enjoy it in their own way. But at the second act when we played more aggressive songs, I wish people would have been a little more into it.
--Is that so.
Mana: Just a little, I thought. (laughs) But you know, when I saw this live's questionnaire there were a lot of people who answered yes to "was this first time you have seen Malice Mizer?". So I think there were a lot of people who didn't know how to react.
--For myself too, when I first saw Malice Mizer long ago, it had a big impact. It felt like it left a branded impression me.
Mana: "branded" has a bad ring to it. (laughs) "carved" would be better.
--Yeah. And if there were a lot of people who had seen Malice Mizer for the first time, everyone was seeing Klaha for the first time. What did you think of their reactions to that aspect?
Klaha: At this concert hall I felt like I should have a large amount of influence over the audiences reactions. Of course I didn't want to build a wall with that thought. The feeling conveyed to me was that the audience was mixed with hopes and worries.
--By the way, this is about something earlier this year, but you are releasing a photo history book "Bara no Seidou". Unfortunately, this magazine comes out before it will be released.
Mana: Ah, we are still working on it.
Közi: It takes time, cause it takes very detailed work. (laughs)
--And its a box set after all. So what's going to be inside?
Mana: The final scriptures of Bara no Seidou. It's very important.
--Something heavy and deep, that you couldn't just stand and read in a bookstore.
Mana: It's through mail order actually.
--So that people have to absorb it fully, right?
Mana: Yes, and furthermore if you don't buy it you won't fully understand "Bara no Seidou".
--On that note, the next item of interest is what Malice Mizer's next sound will be like.
Mana: Umm.. next year..
Közi: We have to think about it first.
Mana: Well, sometime in the early half of next year. I want to release something around then. A single or something.
--What kind of work will it be?
Mana: The world of "Bara no Seidou" still exists, but I'd like to show the world outside the sanctuary a little. The album "Bara no Seidou" will always be inside the sanctuary, but in this next work I'd like to make a song that shows the atmosphere of the outside world. It won't be bright, but.
--Night, of course...
Közi: We conduct ourselves at night you know.
Mana: Well, from the evening onwards is fine. (laughs)
Közi: "Bara no Seidou" has a bit of a closed image to it. This time we want to go outside some.
--Incidentally, there were a few new songs which you debuted at your live.
Mana: Ah, those works are still close to the sanctuary.
--"close to the sanctuary"....?
Közi: That's still inside the site of the sanctuary, around the garden. (laughs)
--Well, I think the Nippon Budoukan live had suitable excitement to it. How do you think it went?
Mana: The live itself was the first we had done in over 2 and a half years.
Mana: It was long. (laughs)
Közi: Chouetsu-san (cameraman, long-time friend of Malice Mizer) who shot the video, said to me, "Whoa, Közi has a guitar!!" (laughs). We had wanted to do a live for a long time, but we just weren't able to. From here on out we're gonna go full force!
--Those are reassuring words. Will you by chance be playing any scattered lives for us?
Mana: I can't give any details right now.
--We all want you to do a tour too.
Yuki: I want to do a tour.
--But for that you need to compose new songs?
--I heard Klaha will henceforth be writing more lyrics too. How do you usually write your lyrics?
Klaha: Usually I don't write them on paper or anything. Truly good lyrics naturally remain inside me. In other words, I listen to the song, and as I walk in that world I write them.
--Klaha's new attitude is rapidly being influenced by the songs it seems.
Mana: That's right!
--As of now how long have the four of you been working together?
Közi: Um, around the production time of the album...
Mana: I don't really remember. I mean, I don't have a address book or anything.
--A, Address book?
Klaha: A scheduler.
Mana: Don't have one!
Közi: But aren't you concerned with world affairs?
--What does that mean? (uneasy laugh) Without a planner, aren't things inconvenient?
Közi: None of us have one.
--It seems like Klaha is the type that would have one, but...
Klaha: I have one, but I don't often write in it.
Mana: I have a live planner.
--A live planner?
Mana: It's more like a little formation notebook.
--Formation? Well, you are the director right? (laughs)
Mana: It has the positions we stand and move in depending on the song. Now that the live is over though, I don't have it anymore.
--Interesting as usual! Well, lastly, as this is first time we've had you, what message do you have for the readers?
Yuki: It's been awhile.
--That came out fast! (laughs)
Közi: It feels like things have just begun now. (laughs)
Yuki: We're sorry to have kept you waiting for various things in the past, but with this new video/dvd, we will be putting out a lot more stuff from now on I think. Please continue to walk with the new Malice Mizer.
Klaha: This is a "how do you do" for me, but I hope you all see Malice Mizer with new feelings.
Közi: This new Malice Mizer with 4 members has its very own enjoyable existence to it, so please be anticipating what our next work will be.
Mana: Everyone already said what I would say, so I just won't talk. (laughs) Well, even now Malice Mizer will be doing something you can't expect or predict, so please look forward to it.