On the first day of AnimeNEXT 2008, Project: JRock Events (USA) got a chance to sit down with the members of Rentrer en Soi before their performance later that night. It was late afternoon and the room we sat in was dimly lit. The members seemed relaxed as we began the interview.
Please introduce yourselves and give us a quote that describes you.
Satsuki: I am Satsuki (vocalist). Um… America lover, Satsuki.
Satsuki: (whispers) New York lover. (laughs)
Takumi: I came this time so I hope you guys come to Japan soon. I’m Takumi (guitarist).
Shun: I’m the guitarist Shun. I’m looking forward to tonight.
Mika: I’m Mika (drummer), the Japanese Otaku.
Ryo: I’m the bassist Ryo. I play the bass.
Last year Rentrer en Soi performed for the first time in the US. How was that experience like and is there anything new you’re looking forward to this time around?
Satsuki: I’m looking forward to seeing everyone in America again.
Takumi: From the last live that we have done, our songs have evolved also so we’re looking forward to being able to show that to everybody.
At Oni-con there was a dinner event scheduled with you guys. Unfortunately that event got cancelled. However this year you are going to have the dinner. How do you feel about meeting some of your fans in such a way?
Satsuki: If I get to have dinner with people that like us, dinner’s going to be very good. It’s going to taste well.
Oni-con was in Texas last year. How is the northeast different?
Satsuki: Because New York is close, everything feels very different. It feels very fresh. It’s a natural area.
So have you guys gone sightseeing yet?
Takumi: We don’t have the time.
Not even after the show?
Satsuki: We haven’t gotten the chance to but we do want to go. We have a very tight time schedule. Hopefully we can go tomorrow.
What would do in New York if you had the time?
Tomorrow, you guys will be doing a Q&A session with your fans. What question would you ask your fans?
Satsuki: If they could say what they like about each member.
What is the funniest question you’ve ever gotten from a fan?
Satsuki: If there’s a psychological question, we get very excited about it.
Translator: In Japan it’s call “Shinri Testo.” It literally translates to “psychological test,” which are questions like: What would you do?, with four choices to choose from.
What is your craziest fan experience?
Satsuki: In Japan we don’t really do photo-sessions. Last time we were here in Texas, having each fan sit between us and be there. That was such a crazy experience, funny but crazy experience that we had to deal with.
What is your favorite English word?
Satsuki: (in English) He lives in forest. In Japan.
What is your favorite kanji?
Satsuki: Not sake? (looks at Ryo)
Ryo: Kobe. (note: kobe is eaten while drinking alcohol)
Takumi: I like the number 49.
Takumi: … how about “itai”? (note: itai is a Japanese exclamation similar to the English word “ow”)
I knew someone was going to say that.
Satsuki: We want to be able to convey, translate what’s inside our hearts.
Earlier this year, you were supposed to come for Clash Against Commercialism but it was cancelled. You missed the chance to perform in New York City. Given the opportunity would you want to perform in NY and why?
Satsuki: Yes. Of course, yes.
All: Yes. We were really looking forward to it.
Takumi: I actually changed my cell phone to something that had a camera on it and I’m really happy this time that New York is really close.
That’s great. I hope you guys get to visit NY.
If you could pick any band to go on tour with, who would you pick and why?
Mika: Regardless of who it is, whether it’s an American band or Japanese band over here, if it’s a band that we’re friends with or that we think we admire in Japan, it would be really interesting.
Who in the music scene do you look up to and how have they influenced your music?
Satsuki: Kyo (vo. of Dir en grey). As a vocalist I’ve learned so much from him.
Now you’ve toured in both Europe and America. Are there any fun road trip stories you can share with us?
Satsuki: Every night Ryo has drinks and has gone crazy.
How have you recovered so well, Ryo?
(band members laugh)
Ryo: I don’t really recover. But if I sleep, I do.
(laughs) I remember in your blog, it often says that Ryo sleeps a lot.
Satsuki: (in English) Yes. Japanese Naturalist. Always sleep.
There is a lot of Christian or religious imagery in the PV and lyrics of your recent release, Stigmata. What brought this on?
Satsuki: When I heard the story about stigmata it actually related to the lyrics that I had already written. I didn’t really mean to use Christian or religious imagery at all but somehow it turned into that.
Can you tell us about your upcoming single, Unending Sanctuary?
Satsuki: We really think that everyone is going to like it. So everyone, please listen to it.
Are you looking forward to today’s show and can you give us a little preview of the setlist?
Satsuki: We’re looking forward to the show and we’ll be doing new songs.
Unending Sanctuary? The new single?
Satsuki: (in English) Yes.
Can we look forward to your own headlining tour anytime soon?
Satsuki: We’re ready at anytime to do that. So please, all the American fans, support us.
Do you have any last messages for your fans?
Ryo: We can only come here once in a while, so please enjoy the live.
Mika: Where I live is far, so let’s make it a good show together.
Shun: I love you.
I’m sure the fans will be happy to hear it.
Takumi: Um, can you give me a minute?
Satsuki: You are so slow!
Takumi: …I’ll be waiting… in Japan.
Satsuki: Please love me.
Thank you very much. Good luck with the show.
interview by Sophia; translation by Midori Maejima; photos courtesy of JHouseRock
Thank you to Rentrer en Soi for taking the time to answer our questions, and thank you to JHouseRock and to Rentrer en Soi management for arranging this interview.