[Interview] GASHUKIKO Volume 14

Bursting into the scene with a surprise attack

TRA TRA TRA will set out on their one-man tour in November.  With their 2nd one-man at Shibuya REX as the tour final, and a goal to surpass their first one-man, they continue their onslaught of surprise attacks.  We asked the band some simple questions… From their passion as a band to their practical jokes on each other, it is clear that they are a formidable group that won’t be easy to beat.

TRA TRA TRA officialy began activities as of January last year.  From your name to your appearance, this band’s concept is unimaginably deep.

Omi: You can’t stand out by having a muddled world view or by being flashy so we just wanted to create a band that would be best seen live. It’s not just in how we present ourselves, but also in our music sense and the power of our performances. More than anything, we want to attack with an aggressive performance.  We chose our band name with that in mind.

Just between us… When this publication was decided, I thought, “Finally a kira kira band will make an appearance!”  But… I have come to realize that you can’t judge a person on how they look (laughs).

Omi: Did we come across as kira kira (laughs)! We didn’t intend for that at all. I’ve never liked copying others so since we do things our own way no matter what it is, I think you can’t really put us into any category.

Ryo: We don’t really think about being kira kira or kote kote. If I had to describe us with a sound, it’d probably be gori gori.*

Could you also tell us how you guys met?

Ryo: I met the two of them through mutual acquaintances in the music scene. Both of them were introduced me as “There’s this guy who’s freakin’ good.”  My first impression was that HIROKI was a long-haired metalhead guy, and that Omi’s hair was so damn short.  I realized that the impression your hair style makes was really important.

HIROKI: I really did have long hair (laughs).  I guess you really can’t judge a book by its cover.

You really value your individual style and don’t want to be put in a box. But in terms of your music or the band, if there is only one thing you would never give up, what would it be?

Ryo: I’ve always created music that I thought was cool, and I won’t give that up going forward.

Omi: I want to continue being the guitarist who can play and move around more than anyone! I wanna go crazy like a complete idiot!  But I’ll still do what needs to be done (laughs).

HIROKI: In a word, “conviction.”  I gave everything I have to music.  In a good way, of course.  As a drummer I want to remain true to myself.  As a metalhead.

What has left the strongest impression in your band activities?

Ryo: I’d have to say our recent 1st one-man.  Being able to have a gig on my birthday for the first time, and to have that gig be our first one-man, made me really happy.

Omi: We’ve been doing a good amount of cosplay for our instore events, as well as our Halloween and Christmas lives. But I’ll never forget having a “Yukata Day” and later a “Yutaka Day” while cosplaying as Yutaka Mizutani** with everyone.

HIROKI: I’ll never forget how the live house blacked out in the middle of the second live event we sponsored.  Ever since we started, there’s always been some kind of mishap at every event we hosted. Recently we haven’t had any problems, though.

In a previous issue, we introduced you as “a complete surprise attack on the music industry,” but conversely, have there been any instances that caught you by surprise?

Ryo: At one of our sponsored events a long time ago, right before the show I went to go set up my mike. When I opened my mike case, a carrot popped out.  I was at a loss for words.  The culprit was Omi. To this day I regret that I haven’t been able to get him back for that.

Omi: The day of a gig, I saw that hair and makeup had messed up and thought I’d die (laughs).

HIROKI: I forgot my costume at home once.  I was this close to doing the show without a shirt (laughs).

I understand that it’s been decided that from November 5th, you will be on a  tour through Tokyo, Nagoya, and Osaka.

Ryo: We haven’t been to Nagoya and Osaka in a while so I’m really excited.  We’re a lot different from before so come check us out. I wanna annihilate Nagoya and Osaka.

Omi: We’ll show you how much we’ve powered up since the last tour! I’m especially excited about the mosh during our new song, “KAMIKAZE.”

HIROKI: I’m from the Nagoya area so I’m pretty hyped. I love tours. I wanna make this the best tour to date. Don’t miss it!

The tour final on November 25th will be commemorated by your 2nd one-man!  You must be excited.

Omi: It’ll also be my birthday event… so it’ll just be a celebration of me!  Sorry, just joking (laughs).  It hasn’t been long since our 1st one-man so we want to see if we can show how different we’ve become and how much we’ve grown. Come see for yourselves, you won’t regret it.

Ryo: Last time everyone celebrated my birthday, but this time we also have a surprise that’s not related to birthday celebrations (laughs).  Well, you’ll just have to wait and see.  I definitely want to surpass our 1st one-man.

HIROKI: Well now since everyone will be expecting a surprise, I’ll have to think of a surprise that’ll be even more surprising than that one. I put too much effort into surprises (laughs).  We’ll definitely make this one better than the last. I hope you enjoy it.

Finally, please give a few words to our readers.

Ryo: I hope you can enjoy what only TRA TRA TRA, and I as a member of TRA TRA TRA, have to offer.

Omi: Along with our tour and one-man, we will vigorously continue in our band activities so be sure to check us out!! There’s no band as aggressive as us!

HIROKI: To those of you who are recently bored with life! Come to a TRA TRA TRA gig! See you at the live house!

[Translator’s Notes]

* kira kira is the onomatopoeia for something glittery or sparkly. It’s often used to describe osharei-kei bands.

kote kote is the onomatopoeia for something heavy or thick (as in makeup) and is used to describe those bands with super heavy makeup. Their image is typically goth or punk and they usually have a heavier sound.

gori gori is the onomatopoeia for something that is stubborn or unbending. It can also be used to describe a scraping sound. It’s not usually used by bangya to describe a band. This is Ryo basically just emphasizing that Tra cannot be categorized.

**Yutaka Mizuta is a Japanese actor and singer from Hokkaido. He’s the main character in the Japanese detective drama, Aibo (Partners).

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