Title / Artist
Interview with Plastic Tree in Paris - 13.10.2008
Date: 2008.12.05
Artist:   Plastic Tree  
Date of Interview: 2008.10.12

It is a very warm day in October when I meet the band in their hotel, set up in the cramped room with the window open to the view... tired from the tour and the never-ending interviews, they can only spare us a few minutes, which were shared in a comfortable atmosphere.

This Paris date is part of your third overseas tour. How was your experience of the concert this time? Have you changed anything in terms of your first concert at La Locomotive (in 2005)?
Ryutarou: Well, in Japan we have more freedom and possibilities to perform our lives how we want to. One can project pictures or use special decorations, but we come to Europe and attempt everything with the limited possibilities available to us so that it can be like it is in Japan.

This year you have played for the first time in London and Lyon, and later will be followed by your first concerts in Greece and Poland: How do you feel about these debuts?
Ryutarou: I've always wanted to visit many countries, so I am very happy. It is also good to do some tourism, but better still is the inspiration that the band experiences by doing that, and to meet new people who give us the desire to continue.

Could you explain the concept of your new album "Ustusemi"?
Tadashi: Before we completed this album, we had not decided on a specific theme. Everyone brought their own songs and we all complied with them, unlike on previous albums.
Ryutarou: With the tours in foreign countries we are known as and are representing a "Japanese band". With these thoughts in mind we have created Utsusemi. This record is us in that current time, hence the title. (Note: "utsusemi", except for "grasshopper/cicada", also refers to the real world and the people who belong to this world.)

Other than "Replay" and "Alone Again, Wonderful World", at yesterday's concert you didn’t play any other songs from "Utsusemi". That is pretty astonishing...
(Ryutarou laughs when it is explained to him that it was not enough)
Akira: The album has not been released in Europe, that's why it was decided to only play the songs that people here will know.

Is a possible European release of this record intended?
Ryutarou: It is not up to us to decide; rather it is a problem between the record companies. But of course I would welcome it if one would make it possible for the CD to be released, so that potentially more people could hear it.

At yesterday's concert there were many elements in the décor that reminded one of a Japanese festival. Why did you consider doing that?
Ryutarou: No one really thought seriously about it... (thinks) One wanted to mediate our universe a little more, rather than only with our music, and since there are certain barriers in language, these decorative elements should be an aid in trying to understand who we are.

The performance from yesterday was filmed. Do you plan to release a DVD of this tour?
Ryutarou: Indeed, we will put out a DVD on Universal in December. The focus will be on the Japan tour, but we want to include clips from what we experienced here in Europe; the atmosphere that prevailed and the life before the concerts.

Other than the DVD, do you have any plans for the end of the year?
Ryutarou: Well, the tour here is not quite over, the tour in Japan has not yet begun, and Utsusemi has only recently been released... so for the moment, nothing is planned. We are motivated to continue on.

Nippon Project would like to thank Soundlicious, Orient-Extrême, Plastic Tree and their management for their cooperation.

© This Interview was from Shu and conducted by Nippon Project.

Translated from German by Dee, corrections by Rana.

Image © J-ROCK CO, courtesy of Soundlicious
Author: Dee
last update: 2009-10-27