Friday, 5 September 2014

幾何学模様/Kikagaku Moyo Interview with Go Kurosawa and Daoud Akira! (with Guest Questions from Joshua Schultz!)

Movers of the eastern sands, scorchers of the forgotten lands, Kikagaku Moyo burst onto the neo psych scene in mid-2013 with their hard-hitting, self-titled début album. The Japanese coffee-room rockers have since continued their musical expedition releasing a set of meditative jams, Mammatus Clouds, and their début's follow-up LP, Forest of Lost Children. Every time these space mountain men release, it surely gets everyone excited, and for good reason too. We caught up with Go, and Daoud, to find out a little bit more about the band. - Interview by Daniel Sharman.

*Answered by Go [Blue] and Daoud [Red]*

Dan: Where do you guys hail from?

Go: We hail from Tokyo, Japan.

Dan: Who is in the band, and who plays what?

Go: Tomo (Guitar)
Daoud  (Guitar)
Kotsuguy (Bass Guitar)
Ryu (Sitar)
Go (Drums)

Dan: How did you guys get together, and start playing?

Go: Tomo and I first met in Tokyo through mutual friends. Tomo found Daoud in a smoking area of the university that they both attended. Tomo asked him if he wanted to come see our show and after the show we asked if he would play guitar with us. We found Kotsuguy on the street, where he was recording the noises from vending machines for his drone project. Ryu is my brother; he finished his sitar training in India at the time we started playing. 

Dan: Being from Japan, you must be more exposed to Eastern psychedelia than most of my readers, what are some of your influences?

Go: Since Japan is an island, we are isolated from other countries. We are exposed to Japanese music for sure, but not really “Eastern.”

We all listen to different music, so we can't really say who influences the band as a whole. We would rather hear what you think we are influenced by. [laugh]

Dan: How does writing normally occur within the band? Are your improvised recordings, like Mammatus Clouds, planned at all?

Go: We are always trying find inspiration from anything that we encounter like art, books, movies or our own experiences. Actually, we haven't found a set method for writing music.  
Most songs have a part we can freely jam. For Mammatus Clouds, we didn’t really plan it, but we shared one image and tried to express it on the stage. We were just having fun to see where the song goes. 

Dan: You've recently started a new record label, Guruguru Brain, can you tell us a bit about it?

Go: Guruguru Brain focuses on discovering and introducing Asian underground music. Many bands in Asia have grown up listening to American and European music. Now, many bands are trying to be original rather than just copying what they like. We believe that it’s time to make an impact on the music scene in Asia.

Dan: Do you feel Western psych-lovers are underexposed to Eastern psychedelia?

Go: We don’t think so. A lot of old Asian psych/funk has been discovered and reissued by European or American labels. 

Dan: On your two latest recordings, what guitars were used?

Daoud: We used all kinds of guitars. A Squier Stratocaster, a Gibson Les Paul, a Bacchus Jaguar and some other bizarre guitars to name a few.

Dan: And, what about amps, and effects pedals?

Daoud: We used many fuzz pedals and tape echoes. Those are my favourite. I think Tomo and I have used 4 or 5 different tape echoes in the last two years. 

Dan: What about other instruments?

Go: We brought almost all of our instruments to the recording studio—everything from an egg shaker to a souvenir flute from Mt. Fuji.

Guest questions from Josh Schultz of Traveling Circle (Read our interview here)

Josh: While you guys absolutely killed it on your recent U.S. dates, your sets were on the short side for a band of your ilk. This is great for me because I'm old, grumpy, and easily distracted, but why did you guys choose to play shorter sets, when so many of your contemporaries tend to carry on FOR EVVVVVERRRRR?

Go: We are also grumpy and easily distracted, same as you [laughs]

Josh: I noticed you didn’t have the sitar out for the U.S. dates I was lucky enough to catch. While the band still sounded freakin’ amazing, where was Ryu? Are there plans to tour with sitar in the future?

Go: Ryu always travels around the world because he is a forest engineer. He will join the tour whenever he is able to. We have a different set whenever we are with him. Without him, we tend to sound a lot heavier and louder.

Josh: You have been touring with some pretty cool bands as well.  Among these, are there any standouts, favourites or new discoveries you would like to mention?

Go: Our favourites are Moon Duo, Eternal Tapestry, the Myrrors and Kiki Pau. A new discovery was a band called The Night Collectors who we played with in Tucson, Arizona.

Josh: I understand your band was involved with the Tokyo Psych Fest series. Are there any plans to do more of these in the future? What was your favorite edition of the series so far and who played?

Go: We just did a special event called “Kraut Rock Nacht” where each band covers Kraut rock songs. They played songs from Can, Kraftwerk, Amon Duul, Embryo and Neu.
Currently, we are organizing a Japanese tour for mid september and inviting Dreamtime 
from Australia, Rollfast from Indonesia, and Scattered Purgatory from Taiwan. Kikagaku Moyo will be playing the last Tokyo show on September 15th.

Josh: Kikagaku Moyo appeared to be well received at the U.S. shows, is it the same in Tokyo? 

Go: We don't know because we haven't play any shows in Japan after the US tour.

Josh: How do audiences in Tokyo compare with those overseas?

Go: It’s totally different for sure, We barely play shows in Tokyo, so we will see in September.


Dan: What is next for Kikaguka moyo?

Go: We will tour UK in October.

Dan: Is there anything else you would like to say?

Go: Thank you for reading this interview and supporting us! We hope to see you soon at the show. Arigato! - Kikagaku Moyo.

Do You Even Psychedelic? would like to thank the Kikagaku Moyo boys for taking the time out of their busy schedule to do the interview! 

For interviews with the other bands mentioned in this article:
The Myrrors - Here
Beyond Beyond Is Beyond - Here
Ripley Johnson (of Moon Duo) - Here
The Night Collectors - Here

Make sure to like the band's Facebook page to keep up to date - here.

Check out, buy, and stream the band's full discography - here.

No comments:

Post a Comment