Jun 19 2013

NSDP – Interview (2013)

Interview by Jen Wang
June 19, 2013


After a smoking hot show to kick off Friday night at A-Kon, I had opportunity to speak with NSDP near the end of the convention. They had just returned from exploring Dallas. Ryo-Hey showed off a box of brand new sneakers while Ash sported his new cowboy hat. Along with YUI, KEIJI, and SHUE, they reminisced about the fun they’ve been having all weekend before settling down. It was obvious that they were making the most of their time in Texas.

What inspired the band’s concept of “breaking all walls into doors”?

Ash: One thing maybe is I got bullied a lot as a kid. If people didn’t bring me here, I’d probably pass the people I’ve met this weekend by. That’s a wall that makes me not do stuff. I’d like to think that you can go through all doors instead.

Outside of going to concerts, what would you say is the best way to create or maintain this door between two people of different cultures?

Ash: This is my personal opinion. I don’t know much English and they don’t know Japanese, but a lot of things you can communicate through body language. If I have the passion to communicate, I can go beyond language. Even if you’re speaking the same language, if you don’t care, the message never gets delivered. For me, a door might be created through passion.

What’s the songwriting process like for you?

KEIJI: Recently Ash makes a lot of the songs, and everyone makes arrangements for them. Then we polish them up.

SHUE: If we ever have a better idea, it’s what the song leads us to do.

Something that struck me in some of the songs was the contrast between YUI and Ash’s voice. Was that a deliberate decision or something that just happened with the songs?

Ash: Obviously male and female vocals are totally different. We don’t really mean to have the contrast, but the songs are written to have her as a lead.

What inspired you to call some of your releases “Bootlegs”?

Ash: Because we release those ourselves. They don’t go into press. The recording is simple; it’s like a demo CD.

SHUE: It’s officially pirated.

Ash: [laughs] That’s a paradox.

If you could collaborate with any artist from any country, dead or alive, on a song, with whom would it be?

Ryo-Hey: hide

SHUE: Sorry but I’ve played with him. I really want to play with him again though. I knew him before X, but he was already so ahead of the times. It’s been a while since he passed away, but he’s still not like someone from the old days. It would be great to see how far ahead he is today.

KEIJI: Amuro Namie because I really want to write a song for her. She would give me a lot to learn from.

YUI: Gary Numan. I’ve never gotten to play with him. He’s my hero.

Ash: Nobody. I’m completely satisfied with the people I’m with… Actually, I would like to play with my perfect self.


What are the things you do to get yourselves pumped up before a show?

Ash: Every single live, we gather up and do a cheer. [Ash and KEIJI put their hands together in the middle to demonstrate.] If we do it, we have a good show. When we’re too busy and we forget, it’s not a good live.

Ash, you mentioned wanting to eat barbecue. Have you done it yet?

Ash: We’re going to go out today. I look forward to it since I’ve only eaten tacos. Before I came to Texas, I heard from a friend that Texas has great hospitality like Japan. A-kon’s green room was so accommodating I was a bit surprised.

You’ve also said that your tattoos commemorate an event or memory. What would you get to remember A-kon?

Ash: I’ll think about it when I return to Japan.

As for the rest of the band, what would you do or buy to commemorate this experience?

Ryo-Hey: I bought shoes. [holds them up]

YUI: The fans gave us a banner.

KEIJI: Photos.

SHUE: Just memories.

Ash: Memories for me too. Everything is in my head—the scene of the concert and the cosplays. And I have this cowboy hat.


What has been the most interesting or unusual part of your time here?

Ash: Hearing the crowd chanting “NSDP!” It felt so natural even though Shion was probably responsible. Thank you Shion for that. It was the first time we had heard the audience chanting our name. For me, personally, there was a girl who wanted me to touch her boobs.

What’s next for the band?

Ash: We’re going on tour right away.

Thank you to Babel Entertainment for arranging this interview.