There may be people who aren’t familiar with you or your work. Please introduce yourself and tell us about what you do.

Atsuo: Well we would not like to use limited word or prevent someone’s process of getting to know us in their own way. It is natural and we feel grateful when they have their own image to Boris.


[Editor’s Note: Atsuo responded to all the following questions]

Can you please tell us a little bit about your musical influences?

A: Too many to mention. Even some noise that I can hear in my room now seems to be inspiring musically.

Your musical styles have changed greatly over the years. What influences these musical changes? Can you give us an example?

A: We just follow a context of sound, listen to our recorded material or recording process over again then the sound lead us.

Tell us about some of the style changes you’ve had over the years. For instance your transition from Drone to Punk?

A: No, punk first then to drone, we were originally into punk. When we took extreme sound very seriously then found noise, drone, ambient or absolute silence. Genre or category is just a word has no actual meaning, we have realized that all the sound or sonic are on the same line.

What sorts of things inspire you when you’re writing music? Events? Art? Music?

A: Same as above, everything is on the same line. All the things or experiences in our life affect it then it is output physically through our body. Most importantly we don’t or won’t write music, we just face sound then it becomes something like songs. Also we don’t like the word ‘art’, honestly we think Boris is no longer band nor music either. Our works is similar to a document which reflects a relationship among the world and us. Of course there is no document without someone’s subjective view though.

Tell us a bit about your musical set up and the instruments that you use.

A: Here is basic set up for show in Japan.

**Takeshi / Vocal, Guitar, Bass**
Firstact original Bass & Guitar Double Neck
Ampeg SVT-2pro, Ampeg Cabinet (8×10) x2
Sunn Model-T x2
Marshal Cabinet (4×12) x2
Guyatone [MT-3] (Tuner)
Moby Dick (Active Splitter)
Boss [LS-2] (Line Selector) x2
Sobbat [A/B Breaker] (Line Selector)
ELK [Super Fuzz Sustainer] (Fuzz)
Electro Harmonics [Graphic Fuzz] (Fuzz)
DOD [Buzz Box] (Distortion)
Bootleg [Deep Box] (Booster)
Z-Vex [Super Duper] (Booster)
Fulltone [Bass Full Drive] (Over Drive)
Line 6 [DL4] (Delay Modeler)
Electro Harmonics [Holy Grail] (Reverb)
Korg [Mr.Multi] (Pedal Wah/Phaser)
Copilot FX [Antenna] (Ring Modulator)
Digitech [Jam Man] (Loop Sampler)
Ernieball [VP Jr] (Volume Pedal) x2

**Wata / Vocal, Guitar, Keyboard**
Gibson Les Paul Custom
Roland Juno-60
Toy Space Keyboard
Orange OR-120, AD140
Orange cabinet (4×12)x2
Orange Bass cabinet (1×15)
ELK [Big Muff] (Fuzz)
Electro Harmonics [Big Muff] (Fuzz)
MKC [Wata Fuzz] (Fuzz)
Lovetone [Big Cheese] (Fuzz)
Z-Vex [Tremorama](Tremolo)
Z-Vex [Super Duper] (Booster)
Jim Dunlop [Cry baby] (Wah)
Foxx [Wah Fuzz Volume]
Boss [RV-2] (Reverb)
Boss [DS-1] (Distortion)
Roland [Space echo RE-150] (Tape Echo) x2
Roland [DC-20] (Analog Echo)
Soul power Instruments [The Three] (Loop Selector)
Digitech [Jam Man] (Loop Sampler)
Ernieball [VP Jr] (Volume Pedal) x2

**Atsuo / Vocal, Drums**
Orange County 14X5.5 SD
Pearl FX 26"x14 Kick, 16"x 16"FT, 14"X14"Rack
Zildjian 40" Gong, 24"Medium Ride, 19"Sabian Metal Crash, 15"H.H.
Roland [SPD-S] (Sampling Pad w/ Trigger)

More gears are used during recording session.

Did you always want to be a musician? If not, when did you decide that you wanted to become one? What influenced that decision?

A: I like painting and designing as well, music is just one of the way of expression. I used to think it would be great if I could live off my work. Creating a work means taking responsibility, when money or daily life are involved the word ‘responsibility’ leads more reality to us.

While we’re in this area, can you tell us something about your plans for the future? Tours, Projects, and Albums etc.

A: Now we are just releasing a monthly series of singles through Southern Lord from September until November. We are always recording whenever we are at our places. Hopefully we would be able to tour US and Euro at some point next year.

Can you tell us why you’ll be playing only songs from your 2003 release, ["Feedbacker" for the All Tomorrow’s Party Festival]?

A: Actually we played one song from the album called "Heavy Rocks"(2002) for Tokyo show recently [as well]. Usually we have toured for new album so the new song is going to be a main focus of setlist. Our song is very long thus it is pretty hard to decide which songs we should pick up.

What are your opinions on the current state of music in Japan?

A: In Japan digital distribution is not a big thing, except cellphone download service for mainstream or chart single. Unlike US or Euro vinyl market in Japan is way too small and still shrinking, even no sign for possible development at all. I am afraid music is in a similar position to cartoon or Manga, let me say even music is subordinate to them. In general the first time for common Japanese people enjoying music is through cartoon animation and its theme song, seems like there is very few case that music itself is first strike. Whenever I talk with American or European musician I have them hear some songs of Miku Hatsune or sort of vocaloid thing as some extreme example of Japanese culture, they are always surprised with it. If you are familiar with current Japanese culture you may have heard about, songs written with human voice sampling application is released as an original song by an imaginary pop star. It is getting very popular and higher position on hit chart, those action is way very different from overseas case. In history, music used to be written by human being and be evaluated as a description of an author. Miku Hatsune or vocaloid is not human being though she has had huge attention and popularity then becomes a pop star as an icon that accepts listener’s illusion or wild fancy. I am guessing Miku Hatsune’s listeners are getting back to humanity in indirect way rather than denying value of human being. This phenomenon seems to be very interesting to me, because it has both affirmation and denial at the same time. I must say whole Japanese culture is being reversed in these days.

Can you tell us your feelings about the recent growth in popularity of Japanese music in Europe and the USA?

A: Perhaps western people enjoy Japanese music as the one from another planet…something like alien is playing music under influence of planet earth? In fact many people say to us that our music is very strange even if we are thinking Boris has played straight and ordinary rock. We never create music with aiming to be strange and honestly feel uncomfortable when we are told our music is strange. However I understand that strangeness is close or similar to accident, thrill or fascination of rock. Like we enjoy listening 80’s Japanese rock classics.

Everywhere you go the audiences and their cultures are very different. How do Japanese audiences, compare with say American audiences or European audiences?

A: It might be hard to describe Japanese audience as of now because we have toured US or Euro more than here for years.

Do you have any advice for future musicians?

A: The musician who wanted to be and can be seems to be dead as creator, because music or any expression way should always be new and fresh. If not, it means or is worth nothing. When someone tries to be a musician with following typical existing idea, sounds like the same as they just try to play very old music unconsciously. I think this kind of people will be going to extinguish cultures.

What would you like to say to your fans around the world?

A: Ecstasy of sound that we felt and heard, that is what we would like to share with everyone in various ways. Thank you.

BORIS MySpace:
BORIS info at Southern Lord: