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Herman Li was interviewed by Chinese media site “Lok Wood Tao” about DragonForce’s new album《Reaching Into Infinity》. He answered some of the questions from their fans, including one about BABYMETAL, where he talked something funny about their collaboration on June 12th, 2015 at Download Festival.
“When we first started collaborating, BABYMETAL didn’t know how to speak English. So we pointed and gestured and there was someone who translated (for us). I think that she.. Su (now) speaks better English than the translators. So it’s funny, now we can talk about the Download festival where we first played, it was a stage were we didn’t even rehearse, we played this song Gimme Chocolate. I remember there was this problem, where there was these really weird sounds that we didn’t know where it was coming from. We were just… [insert Herman’s funny faces], all of our faces were like this. At that time, she didn’t know how to speak, we weren’t able to communicate as their/her English wasn’t good enough… wasn’t fluent enough. Now we can laugh, and joke… “wahh remember last time the sound was really bad? Before we played, we didn’t know in front of thousands of people was it right to not have had rehearsals beforehand. It was really risky!” We can laugh about now, about how we were able to pull of the concert.”
[Shall We Talk]Herman Li堅持用廣東話完成嘅訪問Part 1，講吓嚟緊Dragonforce新碟《Reaching Into Infinity》，同解答之前觀眾响樂活道Post嘅問題！睇下有冇答到你？《Reaching Into Infinity》預購：http://evo88.com/en/music?page=shop.browse&keyword=dragonforce+reaching+into
Su-Metal’s older sister, Himeka Nakamoto, revealed yesterday during her radio show, that last week during Japan’s National Holiday Golden Week, she went with Su and their mother on a holiday in New York for 4 nights! We have even translated for you part of the show (see below).
ENGLISH TRANSLATION: “Nakata (N): what did you do on golden week? Himeka (H): me? I went on a vacation. Nakata: that’s wonderful, where to? Fujimori (F): where did you go to? Himeka: i went to new york N+F: eehh?! H: lolol it was the morning after rajira recording session, F: not even one of staffs knew about it! N: could you please stop it with the sudden ‘princess’ jokes? F: you actually went there, right? H: i did. i went sightseeing relaxedly with my mother and little sister. F: that’s a ‘princess’ thing alright H: that’s why i missed the golden week on japan. N: stop it! H: lol N: stop with the sudden ‘stylish’ thing F: what the hell. We could of talk about a lot of things H: really, it’s not a big deal N: like, unusual streets in new york or something… H: well i didn’t talk much about it, but honestly i’m okay either way… F: you should have told us! that person (*i didnt cathc this one clearly) also did say that they wanted to go at this time of year probably on april or may… H: ah that’s right, N: so that was quite fulfilling, right? H: it was fun F: man, seriously i‘ve never been there… N: for how long? H: umm, 4 nights…? N: you are a princess, then! a 4 nights of vacation (*he meant in new york) is for a princess! H: no no no, well, there was this time during handshake, that they joked about it, but i replied it with a ‘yes’ instead, so… N: that was awesome. H: a princess..? i’m not sure… maybe i am N: it can’t be helped that shingo-chan (fujimori) really want to go there F: honestly i really do H: actually, it appears that it’s the warmest time of the year right now over there. F: is that so? N: but, to be able to go to new york alone is awesome, i can’t even picky with the dates. F: true, going there is already a win N: indeed a win F: it doesn’t even matter if it’s in the middle of a winter! What the hell, that was surprising! N: we have discovered a surprising side of himetan today.”
-As we are asking the members to appear one at a time we would like Nakamoto-san as the Student council president to introduce each member one by one.
Whoooa! Who should I start with?
-Well, how about starting from the youngest member, Ooga-san?
Eh? About `My Graduation Toss`?
No, that is not it (laughs)
-We are asking the Student council president to introduce you (laughs)
Ah, shouldn`t you ask me then?
You should ask Sakitei then.
So, I should ask?
Sakitei should do the asking then.
No, Su-chan will introduce you. She will introduce Saki-chan.
-OK, so please get started.
OK! Sakitei is definitely our younger sister character. And that is how it is. When we went to a candy store the other day we felt that we felt that we should recommend this sucking kind of candy (like a baby might suck on) to Sakitei. She is always called a baby by all of us.
She is thought of as cute and is loved by all of us. Her way of stammering with `Eito…Eito…makes us all a bit apprehensive, like are you OK? (laughs). She is a character that we like to jab at a bit. But she is always smiling and laughing. And she imitates me sometimes. (to Ooga) Right?
I do that?
Yes, when you introduce yourself as me. Even though you don`t resemble me at all.
She does my imitation thinking she is really good at it. She has that side of her-of being a real wild card.
-Ooga-san, is this true?
Ummm…well, yes! But I am more mature than that….
Look, everyone is laughing in an unsettled manner. Hahaha…(laughs)
-Can you introduce next, Kikuchi-san?
OK. Well, yes with Kikuchi-san I have a lot of time together with her as Babymetal. When there are just a few of us when we are together as Babymetal she is a real character. She is really talkative and noisy!
But when it comes to Sakura Gakuin she is active in teaching the younger students like Sakitei and surprisingly is very composed when we do interviews. But, she acts like a middle aged guy at times. (laughs)
-Yes, she is a member of the Koyajibu (middle aged guy club) (laughs)
Yes, that is right, the Koyajibu. Yes, she acts like a middle aged man at times. First of all she likes squid. And she also likes to relax on sofas like middle aged men do.
-We have a sofa here as well.
I was relaxing on it earlier. (laughs)
-Is that right? (laughs)
Conversely, she likes to roll into places that are not large but rather enjoys little places, you see.
Yes, small places like cardboard boxes. I feel really comfortable in them.
She has a very challenging spirit and loves to curl up under sofas, etc. `Eh, where did she go? Where is Moa? And we look for her and find her curled up in some small place. And she sometimes tries to make an appeal for finding big spaces we are provided with, with, `Hey, look this is so spacious`. Hahahaha…..(laughs)
That is the kind of girl she is. (laughs)
-Does that fit you?
Yes, that is about right.
-(laughs) OK, next how about Horiuchi-san?
OK. Horiuchi-san is a Fushigi-chan. (a girl who bewilders everyone) (translator`s note: Japanese Fushigi-chan are truly the funnest girls you will ever meet) She is the essence of the Fushigi-chan.
(laughs) Up to this year I had not really talked deeply with Marina-chan. But, this year with our relationship as Student council president and as Vice president there were many things I had to do to assist her, and so we spoke together often. Just being together with her one feels so relaxed and at ease and I felt like we were a married couple at times!
I think perhaps she has a kind of Wife-ish like gentle atmosphere about her.
Hmm..I guess that could be true.
-She listens carefully to what you say.
That`s right. When Su- is really nervous, just by looking at the the peacefully smiling Marina-chan I feel at ease. I honestly think that that is one of her roles to play in Sakura Gakuin.
Ah…My feelings were transmitted to you-ssu!
-When you became the Vice student council president did your way of thinking change at all?
Last year and before I would determine my goals based on my own perspective and I would do my best in regard to them. But with Su-chan being the only 3rd grader I began to realize that there were members who really wanted their opinions to be taken seriously when we would talk things over. I found that we could help and support each other when we talk things over amongst ourselves.
-One`s way of thinking can change with the times.
Yes, that is true and it is because we feel that we must do things through our own decisions and efforts.
-For this single you recorded a total of 3 songs so could you each introduce one song each? Do any of you have a song that you feel really close to?
–Kikuchi-san and Ooga-san raise their hands.
-That was a quick response! So, well, could you select for us, Student council President?
So, shall we go with Sakitei?
-Ooga-san please go ahead.
Saki, well, Saki really likes `My Graduation Toss` but, however, what I want to explain is `Magic…
`Magic Melody` has a very painful, lonely feeling to it, but Saki has you know, not had the experience of falling in love yet. So I was perplexed for a long time about just how I should sing it. The teachers told me to sing it with this painful, sad (Setsunai 切ない) feeling which forced me to think about how to sing this song. Around that time my mother was in the hospital and I couldn`t go and see her and that night I felt very lonely. So it was this feeling that I recalled to myself when singing this song. It seems to have gone well. I think I was able to put that feeling of painful sadness into the song. It is a song that contains a variety of people`s feelings about romance and since I haven`t been in love before I can only try to understand it by listening to the stories of others.
-Oh! Thank you. Nakamoto-san is there anything you want to add to that?
This song was a collaboration with iRando-san and in actual fact we recruited episodes from fans which were actually used in the creation of the song. This was the first time for Sakura Gakuin to sing a real love song and we were allowed to read each of the episodes one by one and since some of these episodes had parts that would under normal conditions be difficult to say to another we took it upon ourselves to sing as representatives for these fans` feelings.
-So the episodes that you all selected became the lyrics of the song. Thank you. So, next how about Kikuchi-san`s song?
I like `My Graduation Toss` the best. Up until recently, `Yume ni Mukatte` held a lot of feelings for me but ever since this song was created and I have listened it repeatedly I have come to like it the best. My favorite lyrics are in the main chorus part (said looking at the lyric sheet).
It is long, isn`t it?
Yes, it is really long. I like the part that goes, `If I tell you the feelings that I have wanted to convey to you for so long, these feelings that really can not be put in words, I will cry and so I am sorry that I could not be with you smiling to very end`. These words remind me of the feelings I had when sending off the graduates last year. Of course since at graduation the other students are spreading their wings and flying away so I shouldn`t be sad, but I always get a painful, lonely feeling and since I felt that this part of the lyrics matches that feeling and since we must graduate from Sakura Gakuin when we graduate from Jr. High school, I feel that this graduation song is one that can only be sung by Sakura Gakuin.
-In the solo part as well Nakamoto-san`s voice is really brought to life. What do you think about that, Student council president?
At this time last year it was `Tabidachi no ni`. It doesn`t really match up with these kinds of Graduation songs. Su-herself does not think so much about graduation. Maybe that means I don`t want to think about it.
(Kikuchi-san and Ooga-san can`t bear the seriousness of the atmosphere and break out giggling.)
That`s enough! Really! (laughs)
Alright, please go ahead. (laughs)
Everyone also are trying not to look at this feeling of graduating floating around Sakura Gakuin. Su-herself also wants to graduate with a smiling face. Because of the very fact that we are doing Babymetal I want to convey this to everyone at this upcoming Live performance. We have done these kinds of Rockish, cool songs in the past at Sakura Gakuin but this song especially delivers this amazingly cheerful but with a D melody message strongly with `Dear My Friends….I love you. I am so happy to have met all of you. I will take all of our memories with me. I won`t forget any of them`, but with a ballad type of feel. I feel that this too is a new type of Graduation song, and I want my friends at real school to listen to it as well. I don`t want to overstate it but this was created for Su- and it will will remain with me for the rest of my life as a Graduation song!
-Thank you. Next, Horiuchi-san could you talk about `Mezase! Super Lady`?
Alright! Mori-sensei, our homeroom teacher, wrote this song. It is a song that makes the most of our respective individuality when we do open classrooms. The various lines that we sing or say at actual open classroom events are real things that each of the members have said in real life before.
Some outstanding lines (laughs)!
This song that features self introductions that reveal the habits and characteristics of each of the members, and it became a 2012 Nendo-ish song that introduces the members in a fun way. I am sure that people who have come to the open classes will realize this deeply when they see the lyrics, and I am sure our characters will also reach those who have not come to open classes. I hope that people will listen to this and become interested in Sakura Gakuin and the history of Sakura Gakuin.
-When you recorded it, did you do it all together or was it one by one?
Both. There were times we we recorded one by one and times with all of us.
-The lyrics in the brackets are really powerful.
-It feels like you are speaking or performing at a live show.
When we took role call during an intermission we did a recording in one quick take with all of us along with Mori-sensei all facing the same microphone.
-During that intermission what is Ooga-san saying?
I am saying, `E-to` (laughs). I always screw up the lines so I say, `E-to, E-to`. There is something I would like to say about this song. When we were recording the line and such Mori-sensei was there but when we were doing long recordings Mori-sensei really screwed up his lines.
And so it was with much effort that the members were able to exhibit their individuality but I am not so sure if Mori-sensei was able to do so. (laughs)
And if I add a bit to that, it appears that this was like the first recording for Mori-sensei and he was so nervous! This time Mori-sensei wrote the lyrics but there are some members who are not too happy about that!
When we got the song and started the lessons for it, we were like, `Why is like this?`. We were told by the teacher who instructs us on daily living matters that we should ask Mori-sensei directly when he comes to teach and so when he came and we started working in the recording booth we were all saying all kinds of things to him. We said things like, `get your act together!` and things like that. In that kind of atmosphere we were recording the intermission parts so I was a little worried about whether we were recording the fun side of Sakura Gakuin or not. I didn`t particularly want to talk about Mori-sensei`s first recording experience here but…(laughs).
Also, at the beginning of the song Mori-sensei introduces himself. At first Moa and the others couldn`t hear it but if listen very carefully you can hear it and I hope that you do take a listen. (laughs)
Yes since he went out of his way to record it (laughs).
Coming from above, above (laughs)
From the bottom, the bottom (laughs)
-The brings things together nicely! Thank you very much. Nakamoto-san, Horiuchi-san and Kikuchi-san are all in clubs but Ooga-san you are not in a club, right? In your blog at the end of the year you said that one of your aims for this year was to join a club. If you have found one you are interested in, please let us know.
Hmm..well, yes.. I still haven`t yet decided on one, but what am I trying to say?
Of the ones that are available…?
I am not really sure. Saki wants to join a club that will show her a side of herself that is not there in the Sakura Gakuin version of Saki. I want to show a totally different Saki.
There isn`t one you want to join?
There are actually many that I want to join.
There are many? (laughs)
You are going to become a Babybones in Juuonbu, right?
Right! I want to be a Juuonbu skeleton. I want to be a Babybone and play in the air band!
In another interview Sakitei said that she is not good at speaking and wants to get over that. She was saying that if she is in a club since there are so members in each club that she would have to talk a lot. But if she joins Juuonbu and becomes a Skeleton she wouldn`t have to speak. And we were saying that a little Babybones would be really cute.
That is what I want to become.
You want to do that? (laughs) We have to make a Skeleton costume for you- a special Sakitei costume.
I am fine with it like it is!
It is very loose. (laughs)
-Personally I hope that you will bring back the Baton club.
There are a lot of requests recently for the Baton club.
Saki wants to join the Baton club!
Can you twirl the baton? The practice is very hard!
About the baton…! How in the world do they spin it like that?
-I heard that you actually got injured.
I had a lot of bruises.
(In a small voice)
That is amazing.
-I will keep hoping the Baton club makes a comeback! In conclusion, looking back on 2012 Nendo what kind of year was it for Sakura Gakuin, Student council president?
Summing it up I would say it was a Sakura Gakuin with the member`s individuality turned on full force. When I first became the president I thought at first that I would have to be like Ayami-chan. I felt that I would have to do everything perfectly like Ayami-chan or I would not be able to perform the duties of president and felt very anxious. But everyone taught me that it did not have to be that way. Everyone said to me, `Su-chan`s Sakura Gakuin is a lot of fun!`. I fell like this year I kind of ran things the way I wanted but when I was able to to read the letters written by everyone during the shooting of the album`s limited DVD I was able for the first time to understand the true feelings of all of the members. They said that it was enjoyable following along with the direction Su-chan took Sakura Gakuin and that they also enjoyed the crazy unexpected things that we did. So, how should I say it? My Sakura Gakuin……
-So you have no regrets looking back?
Yes, none at all! By becoming the president I was able to get to know everyone and get to know their individual characters and as I said before I was able to become good friends with Marina-chan! And so I think it was Sakura Gakuin that was really unified into a single unit.
-Thank you. I look forward to your graduation!
We will do our best!
Birthdate: 1997 December 20th
Likes: Stationary goods, Book covers one gets at bookstores
Birthdate: 1998 April 29th
Likes: Umeboshi, Madeleine, Marshmallow toast
Club: Science club, Going home club, Tennis club
Birthdate: 1999 July 4th
Likes: Doing an impersonation of Marilyn Monroe using the air from a dryer
Club: Juuonbu, Cooking club
Birthdate: 2000 April 11th
My pride: My 6-pack ribbed abs
SU’s comment: “This is our first time to recieve the Award like this, now, I’m excited, but I’m very glad. Thank you for the Award like this. I am looking forward to (*) when I always see cute displays in your CD shops. I appreciate your continued support ! Thank you from BABYMETAL. See you !” *:I think it means “I hope that our BABYMETAL’s CD/DVD/BD will be bought by many people.”.
MOA’S comment: I don’t know what to say. I have only a feeling of gladness and appreciating. I’m really glad(Ureshii-death!!). Thank you. I really appreciate all your support and members, team BABYMETAL, awesome !
The CD Shop Awards (CDショップ大賞 Shīdī Shoppu Taishō?) is an annual set of music awards presented in Japan. It is sponsored by All-Japan CD Shop Clerks Union and awarded based on votes by CD shop clerks from all over Japan. It is referred to as a “music edition of Japan Booksellers’ Award”
Hi. This is the letter from Suzuka. It’s a Touji letter to everyone.
My three years in Jr. High have been immersed in Sakura Gakuin. Since I had to come from Hiroshima in the first two years, I did independent trainings at home by myself, and repeated to get on the first one (train or airplane, unclear) and to get on the last airplane to go home. However, since I moved to Tokyo I couldn’t wait to see you after school. Though Sakura Gakuin members come from different schools and vary in grades, I’ve learned a lot from your hard working attitudes to your dreams regardless of age. We have talked a lot, been troubled and supported each other. I’m glad to find the new aspects of each member.
In the lessons before recordings, we read lyrics out loud every time and thought about the meanings of lyrics. Some of you researched in difficult words and phrases. Before lives, we thought what messages we should send to fukei-san and repeated rehearsals checking the song orders and lyrics. As sometimes I failed and got scolded, the teachers have always listened to my opinions carefully and thought about them together. All fukei-san have watched us with kindness and warm hearts every time. The three graduates have kept an eye on me with smiles on the wallpaper of my cell phone. Thanks to all of them, I was able to take steps forward with confidence at any time, even though I was the lone Jr. High 3rd grader this year. Thank you very much. As I love singing since I was little, Sakura Gakuin taught me the pleasure of singing much more. Through the Sakura Gakuin club activity, I had a lot of experience and met so many people.
I realized that “Music” has a variety of worlds, and learned songs could be a way to communicate with an unspecified large number of people and connect people regardless of distance. That deepened my interest and affection to singing more. My dream is to be a singer. I’d like to learn lots more and make challenges. My goal is to become a singer who can send the world only Nakamoto Suzuka can describe and the messages only Nakamoto Suzuka can dispatch to all over the world. To achieve that, lots of things would be awaiting which I need to learn and make effort to. I feel that the three years we’ve spent with smiles and the songs of Sakura Gakuin would push me forward whatever happens in the future. I’ll do my best for my dreams.
~~~~ Ambitions for Jr. High school, 6th graders
When I become a Jr. High student , Isono Rinon
It’s been one and a half year since Rinon was transferred in the summer of 2011. Rinon becomes a Jr. High student soon. I’ve relied on Jr. High members all the time. Though…I thought I should become a respectable senpai when Ayami-chan, Ayaka-chan and Airi-chan graduated in March, and Yunano-chan, Saki-chan, Mariri-chan were transferred in April, I think I haven’t been reliable at all. (cry) I’d like to become a respectable senpai this time. To be honest, I’m worried if I could become a respectable senpai. Nevertheless I’ll make effort.
I aim to become a reliable senpai who is caring in some cases and strict in some cases, like Yui &Moa who taught me choreography and others kindly, and Hana who was transferred with me and is a year elder. Although Rinon feels sad for graduating from elementary class and changing my ribbon to necktie, Rinon would like to become a kind senpai while holding Rinon’s individuality. I’ll….keep on growing a lot.
~~~~ The things to make effort to in Jr. High school , Ooga Saki
I’ve had some hard times this year but I’ve never thought of giving up Sakura. It’s been a really happy year filled with a series of exciting and thrilling moments. Since Saki started Sakura Gakuin activity just after joining Amuse, I think I’ve been lacking of experience and have bothered teachers and members. So I’d like to become responsible for my own affairs in Jr. High school. I’d also like to improve my singing as I was full of dancing and talking so far.
I had troubles on recordings, but my passion for brushing up my singing grew bigger each time I finished a song. I’d like to sing solo parts with confidence like Su-chan someday. I’d also like to challenge a club activity where Saki can show my color outside of Sakura. I’ll try harder to achieve my goals.
The first questionnaire in Sakura Gakuin, April 2010
Name: Nakamoto Suzuka(12 years old)
Q: Nickname: I’m called Su-chan
Q: Charm point: big ears, hearing well
Q: Hobby: to collect Suzy’s Zoo goods
Q: Special skill: I was said I learn songs quickly
Q: Favorite food: cheese cake, okonomiyaki
Q: Favorite color: white
Q: Favorite phrase: snail, climb Mt.Fuji without a rest
Q: Describe members’ characters in a word
Ayami: leader, leading everyone briskly
Ayaka: elder sister, noticing slight differences and supporting
Airi: calm and relaxed, peaceful
Suzuka: umm…freedom, can’t grasp by myself
Marina: healing, soft and frivolous
Raura: cool and cute, with it girl
Nene: funny, never bored to be with and natural comedian
Hinata: energetic, brightening surroundings
Q: What’s the charm of Sakura Gakuin?
unique members getting together
Q: What are you into recently?
to collect color pens
Q: What was the happiest event recently?
I got a lot of new friends in Jr.High.
Q: What made you laugh recently?
A fuel efficiency girl Heidi movie. 
Q: What is the source of your energy?
I eat an umeboshi everyday recently!!
Q: What’s your dream?
To become a singer and concert in Budokan!
Q: Message for fans
Thank you for always supporting me. I’ll try my best to challenge more activities! Thanks for your continuous support.
1) Suzuka had an event in which she wrote her autograph on the photobooks and handed them out directly to the purchasers when it was published.
2) The talk event at Tower Records will be held this year. Actually it was scheduled for the last year as well. Unfortunately, Tokyo had a record-breaking heavy snow fall on that day and the event was cancelled. The graduates of 2013nendo (Marina, Raura, Nene, Hinata) were popular enough to draw crowds, of course.
All I can say is you have to watch this one-cute, alluring and slightly bizarre, but definitely Himeka all the way.
Nakamoto Himeka is a member of Nogizaka46’s 1st Generation.
Name: Nakamoto Himeka (中元日芽香)
Nickname: Himetan (ひめたん)
Birthdate: April 13, 1996 (17)
Birthplace: Hiroshima, Japan
Sibling: she is the sister of Nakamoto Suzuka aka Su-Metal
Nakamoto Himeka know how to rock in this Nogizaka46 track!