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- E N T F E AT U R E A R T I C L E & I N T E R V I E W
A SPECIAL 10TH ANNIVERSARY TRIBU TE
B Y D E N N I S A . A M I T H & H I R O S H I TA G A WA
P H O T O G R A P H Y C O U R T E S Y O F A V E X E N T E R TA I N M E N T, I N C . V E L F A R R E C O N C E R T P H O T O G R A P H Y B Y T. H A S E G A WA
m . o . v. e o f f i c i a l w e b s i t e @ w w w. e l e c t r o p i c a . c o m
C l i c k h e r e t o p u r c h a s e m . o . v. e m u s i c o n i Tu n e s
m.o.v.e - history
he exciting music trio from Japan known as m.o.v.e is set to bring their unique music of rock, rap, electronica and metal to the US this April for Sakura-Con 2007 in Seattle, WA. The trio consisting of lead vocalist yuri, musician and producer t-kimura and rapper motsu are celebrating their 10th year anniversary and have released a total of 26 CD singles, eight full length albums, seven remix albums and two best albums in Japan. The group is best known for the opening and closing theme songs for popular animation and video game series “Initial D”. Unlike many artists featured on an anime series with typically a single song, the group has had a total of nine songs used as theme songs for the “Initial D” series (1st STAGE through 4th STAGE) including their music used in the Sony PSP video game for “Initial D” and also “Silent Hill”. Because the popularity of the series, m.o.v.e has a dedicated fanbase all over the world. As for the members of the group, producer and musician t-kimura is known to many J-POP fans for his music for the group Favorite Blue (1996-2000). t-kimura has also produced songs for notable talent Hamasaki Ayumi, Shimatani Hitomi, V6 and TRF. The rapper of the group, motsu is an MC for Avex’s online music show “Channel a” and has been involved in composing and remixing music for groups like V6 and even anime such as “Crayon Shin-Chan”. As for lead vocalist yuri, she was spotted at an audition for the music variety show ASAYAN, and captured the attention of t-kimura who later selected her to become the lead vocalist of the new group he was starting up. The group which eventually became known as m.o.v.e gets its name from not settling into one type of music genre and is constantly moving. And that constant moving is not restricted to their music as the group’s members t-kimura and motsu rarely keep the same appearance as their hair color and hairstyle seem to change with each CD single release (as seen on their music videos). With the demand for their music to be released in the US, m.o.v.e’s music can now be purchased and downloaded on iTunes. The group made their debut back in October of 1997 with their CD single “ROCK IT DOWN” (AVDT-20009) which was the ending theme song for the variety/music show “ASAYAN”. The CD single would feature a radio edit, a FAVORITE BLUE DIG-ROCK mix, an English version of the song and a TV mix (instrumental/karaoke). While t-kimura’s music was known especially with the 2 J!-ENT
mo.v.e’s first album “electrock” from June 1998 and their second album “worlds of the mind” released on January 2000
synth pop that was used for his group FAVORITE BLUE, m.o.v.e would be different. The group would feature a very cool synth pop music (which the song in Japan was classified as digital rock) that complimented motsu’s rapping while yuri provided the chorus. The trio’s second CD single would catch the attention of music fans as the song “around the world” (AVCDT-2011, released on Jan. 7, 2008) was used as the opening theme for the anime series “Initial D”. The CD single would feature two additional versions of the song. A “in the midnight (work) mix” REMIX by Sound Pressure Brothers and a TV mix. The group’s third CD single “over drive” (AVDT-20018, rel. on March 18, 1998) would feature more of yuri’s vocals, as opposed to the last two CD singles, which mainly featured yuri singing the chorus and motu’s rapping. The CD single will be used for the ending theme for “ASAYAN”.
m.o.v.e members (from L-R): t-kimura, yuri and motsu
m.o.v.e (from L-R): t-kimura, yuri and motsu. Image courtesy of Avex Entertainment, Inc.
The CD single featured an EBOMAN remix of “ROCK IT DOWN” and a TV mix of “over drive”. In May 1998, the trio was back with another “Initial D” theme song (ending theme) with “Rage your dream” (AVDT2002, rel. on May 13, 1998). The CD single would feature an EXTENDED VERSION of “around the world” and a TV mix of “Rage your dream”. In June, the group would release their first album “electrock” (AVCT-10015) featuring 11 tracks which include their first four CD singles. The Asian release of the album would feature a Video CD (VCD) containing the music videos of their first four releases. October 1998 would bring the group’s first VHS video release with “ELECTRIZE” (AVVT-90003) featuring the music videos for the first four CD singles and live performance clip featuring the group performing at Yokohama’s Marine Stadium, off shots and interviews. In November 1998, m.o.v.e released their 5th CD single “BREAK IN2 THE NITE” (AVDT-20035) which became their third CD single to be used for the “Initial D” anime. The CD single would also feature two mixes of the song. A t.kimura plant mix and a TV mix. Their sixth CD single “platinum” (AVCT-30005, rel. June 30, 1999) was used for the Tokyo TV variety show “Sukiyaki London Boots Taisaku”. The CD single was the first to include a c/w song (titled “flash you back”) that was not a remix of their past CD singles. Also featured in the CD single was a D.S.P. blaster EDIT of the “platinum” remixed by Achilles Damigos and a TV MIX. The group released their 7th CD single “Blazin’ Beat” (AVCT-30009, rel. Oct. 27, 1999, their 4th “Initial D” theme song which was used for the anime series “Initial D -Second 4 J!-ENT
Stage-”. The CD single was their largest CD single featuring a total of 10 tracks featuring the original and remix versions of “Blazin’ Beat” and “singin’ 4 U” (Reactor edit). Also featuring remixes such as “a breath of yan MIX”, DJ FLOWER ROCK “LOW LIFTING DUB”, “DJ FLOWER ROCK MIX”, “a breath of yin MIX”, “STRAIGHT HOUSE MIX”, and TV mixes of “Blazin’ Beat” and “singin’ 4 U”. On January 19, 2000 the group simultaneously released their second album “worlds of the mind” (AVCT-10065) and the “words of the mind ~brand new journey~” CD single (AVCT-30017). The CD single was used as the ending theme for “ASAYAN” and featured a “fleecy clouds mix”, “meet my friend mix”, “ALTERNATE MIX (MEET AGAIN)” and a “TV MIX”. The album featured a total of 11 songs that included their 5th through 8th CD singles, a ten minute remix song and an album that featured music that consisted of digital rock, digital beat, Eurobeat and much more. In March 2000, the first remix album for m.o.v.e was released with “remixers play move” (AVCT-10073, rel. March 23, 2000) featuring the groups songs remixed by NAOKI ATSUMI, AQUILA, WAY OUT WEST, motsu, PETE HAMMOND and more. The group released their 9th CD single “sweet vibration” (AVCT-30018, rel. July 19, 2000) featuring eight tracks of original and remix versions of “sweet vibration” and “Can’t Quit This!!!!”. “sweet vibration” would be featured in several commercials and also as the ending theme for TBS “CDTV”. The CD single would feature an “electro house mix”, “SH FUNK MIX”, “Sigtoto 80’s Mix” and “TV MIX”. Also featured in the CD single was a “Long Version” of
m.o.v.e (from L-R): motsu, t-kimura, and yuri. Image courtesy of Avex Entertainment, Inc.
“time machine” and a “The Rubber Club Dub mix” and an SH FUNK MIX of “Can’t Quit This!!! ~KNOCK `EM OUT~” which would be used as the ending theme for the PS2 video game “Shin Sangoku Musou 2” (Dynasty Warriors 2). In November 2000, the group released their second VHS video clip “electrizm” (AVVT-90007) featuring the music video clips from their 5th CD single “BREAK IN2 THE NITE” through their 9th CD single “sweet vibration”.. Also, released simultaneously was their first DVD album “overdose pop star” (AVBT-91005) featuring their first 9 CD singles in DVD audio (96khz 24 Bit). To kick off the New Year for 2001, the group released their 10th CD single “Gamble Rumble” (AVCT-30034) which featured the songs “Gamble Rumble” and the c/w song “strike on”, both used for “Initial D Third Stage”. The CD single marked the first time the group added a second c/w song with “Destiny” on a CD single release. Also featured in the CD single was a deep mix-remix by motsu for “Gamble Rumble”. The following month, m.o.v.e released their third album “Operation Overload 7” which featured a total of 14 tracks including their 9th and 10th CD singles. With the popularity of their first remix album, a second remix album titled “HYPER TECHNO MIX REVOLUTION I” 8 J!-ENT
(AVCT-10099, rel. on May 30, 2001) was released. This album would feature remixes by RAVEMAN, FRAGMA, RANDOMIZER, Achilles Damigos, DJ VISAGE, D-Z and more. Also, artwork featuring the three in manga style characters on the CD booklet. From this point, the group would have monthly releases, starting with their 11th CD single “SUPER SONIC DANCE” (AVCT-30040, rel. June 13, 2001) which would be the ending theme song for “Sukiyaki!! London Boots Taisaku”. The CD single would feature a “t-kimura RAVE TRANCENTRAL MIX” for “RIDE ON THE WAVE” and for “stay with me...” a t-kimura CLUB MIX” and a “TV MIX” Just under two months since the release of their second remix album, m.o.v.e released their third remix album “HYPER TECHNO MIX REVOLUTION II” (AVCT-10100, rel. July 2, 2001) featuring seven remix tracks by RAVEMAN, DZ, DJ ZORRO, L.A. STYLE, ileus, LOVE MACHINE and MAXIMIZOR. In August, m.o.v.e released their 12th CD single “FLY ME SO HIGH” (AVCT-30044, rel. Aug. 8, 2001) which was used as an image song for “TOYOTA PRINCESS CUP 2001” and feature the c/w song “SUNDAY FUNDAY” and would also return back to the schedule of releases of every two months rather than every month.
The CD single would feature a remix of “words of mind ~brandnew journey~” by Tetsuya RIMO-CON Tamura for Y&Co.ltd and a remix of “SUPER SONIC DANCE (mushroom huntin’ mix) by motsu. In October, m.o.v.e would release their third remix album “HYPER TECHNO MIX REVOLUTION III ~TRANCE vs. HARD CORE TECHNO” (AVCT-10106~7, rel. Oct. 11, 2001) featuring two discs separated by TRANCE REMIX and the other HARD CORE TECHNO REMIX with a total of 14 tracks overall remixed by D-Z, tsunemoto kobayashi, 83key, J. Sasaki, FRAGMA, GENESIS D, BAZOOKA BOYZ, BUSTARD and more. In Dececember, m.o.v.e released their 13th CD single “come together” (AVCT-30048) which was used for the theme song for TBS “Wonderful”. The CD single would feature coupling songs “blue jewel” and “come together”. The CD single would feature a remix version of the song by AIRHEADZ. In February 2002, m.o.v.e would have two releases. The first was their 14th CD single “Romancing Train” (AVCT-30049, rel. Feb. 6) featuring coupling song Promised Land ~bless into the sunshine~ and remixes by tatsumaki and ORBITRIBE. “Romancing Train” would be used as the ending theme for the anime “Final Fantasy Unlimited”. The trio would also release their fourth album “SYNERGY” (AVCT-10108, rel. Feb. 27) featuring thirteen tracks which would include their 11th through 14th CD singles. In March, the group would release their second DVD album “SYNERGY CLIPS” (AVBT-91011, rel. March 13, 2002) and would include TV spots and making of PV and feature their 10th CD single through their 14th CD single. In June, m.o.v.e would have two simultaneous releases with their 15th CD single “FUTURE BREEZE” (AVCT-30054, rel. June 26) featuring coupling song “Passenger Seat” and remixes by Orbitribe, Dubby Budda and t-kimura. The song would also be used as the opening theme that month for TBS “CDTV”. Also released was their first DVD single titled “FUTURE BREEZE+various works” (AVBT-91012). This DVD single would feature a different coupling and remix song that the CD release. The DVD single featured the coupling song “Sugar Sugar Rain”, a remix by TRAFFIX (Genki&NikK) and a making of PV, a special titled t-kimura about SOUND, motsu about RAP and yuri about FASHION. In August, the fourth remix album was released titled “TropicanTrops” featuring nine tracks which each song ventured into different types of music genres such as: “Gamble Rumble” (Puertronix Mix”, “Blazin’ Beat” (Brazilian Beat Mix), “cafe ROZA” (Dubby Bossa mix) and “Nu-Salsoul mix). In November, was the release of the groups 16th CD single “WAKE YOUR LOVE~” (AVCT-30060, rel. Nov. 20) which featured the coupling song “T.R.A.P.” and remixes by Satoshi Hidaka (GTS) and a Puertronix Mix. Also, simultaneously released was their second DVD single of the song “WAKE YOUR LOVE~” (AVBT-91013) which featured the making of and the shooting of the song. Also, a “motsu about RAP vol, II” and a Q&A. In December, the group would release their first best album titled “move super tune - BEST SELECTIONS-” (AVCT-10116, rel. Dec. 4, 2002) which featured a total of 18 songs which featured nearly all sixteen CD singles with the exception of their third and fifth CD singles “over drive”, “BREAK IN2 THE NITE” and their J!-ENT 9
8th CD single “words of the mind ~brandnew journey~”. and included the songs “Extasy~in my dream~”, “U.S.A.” and “Silent white?”. The best album would feature the songs gapless (their are chapter breaks but no two second wait), so it would play straight run like a non-stop mix. Also, simultaneously released with their 3rd DVD album of “move super tune -BEST SELECTIONS-” (AVBT-91015) which was the same as the CD release (gapless) but feature the songs in 96khz and 24 bit (2ch STEREO) and while playing, the DVD would show video (the CD single cover) and a track selection menu. In 2003, m.o.v.e would release their 17th CD single “BURNING DANCE ~and other Japanimation songs~” (AVCT-30071, rel. June 25) featuring coupling songs “Drivin’ Through The Night” and their 10th CD single “Gamble Rumble”. Remix version of “Drivin’ Through The Night” was done by t-kimura. The song would be used for the anime series “Asobotto Senki Goku”. In August 2003, m.o.v.e would make their US debut at AnimeFEST in Dallas, Texas. Their first performance in front of a crowd of thousands of American fans. In September, the group would release their 18th CD single “painless PAIN” (AVCT-30007, rel. Sept. 3) which would also feature Soundless Rain remix by motsu and a Renaissance Symphony with GARUDA. Simultaneously released with the CD single was the group’s 3rd DVD single “Painless PAIN” (AVBT-91024) which would feature the music video, making of, “motsu about RAP vol. III”, yuri CHANNEL (yuri self TV) and motsu TV (motsu self TV). A week later, the trio would release a mini album titled “DECADANCE” (AVCT-10134, rel. Sept. 10) featuring seven tracks including their 18th CD single “painless PAIN”. In 2004, the group would release their 19th CD single “Blast My Desire” (AVCT-30081, rel. Jan 7) which would be used as the ending theme for “Initial D Fourth Stage” and featuring the coupling song “WORLD’S END ~rebirth” and featuring a total of 9 tracks including remixes by motsu, Daisuke Imai, MOB MASTER and more. Released on the same day was their 4th DVD single “Blast my Desire” (AVBT-91028) which featured the music video, making of, “motsu about RAP Vol. IV”, and a live performance of “WORLD’S END ~Rebirth~ “ recorded at CLUB JUNKBOX TOKYO BAY on Nov. 15, 2003. Released that same month was the group’s 5th full-length album “Deep Calm” (AVCT-10140/B -CD+DVD and AVCT-10141 CD only), their first in almost two years. The album would feature 14 songs and feature 13 new songs and their 18th CD single “Blast My Desire”. In April, a single collection album was released titled “REWIND ~singles collection+~ (AVCT-10142~3/B feat. 2 CD+DVD, AVCT-10144~5 featuring 2 CD’s). The album feature nearly every CD single up to their 17th CD single “BURNING DANCE” and feature other songs such as “MUGEN”, “blue jewel”, “majestic flight” and “T.R.A.P.”. The best part of this collection was the DVD release which featured all music videos up to their 16th CD single and featuring the music video of “Sugar Sugar Rain”. In May, the group would release their 20th CD single “DOGFIGHT” (AVCT-30082, rel. May 26) which would be used as an opening theme for “Initial D Fourth Stage” and feature the
Images of m.o.v.e’s 23rd CD single “FREAK PLANET”, 24th CD single “DISCO TIME”, 25th CD single “RAIMEI ~OUT OF KONTROL~” and their 26th CD single “ANGEL EYES”. Images courtesy of Avex Entertainment, Inc.
coupling song “Fall iNTo DozE” and an English version of the song. A simultaneous release of a “DOG FIGHT” DVD single (AVBT-91024) featuring the music video, making of and “motsu about RAP vol. V” and also the group’s sixth remix album titled “FAST FORWARD ~FUTURE BREAKBEATNIX~ (AVCT-10151) which would feature remixes by Heito Toni (Co-Fusion), DJ KAORI, FORCE OF NATURE, SUBZERO of Kokuhen Production, BEROSHIMA, Masahito Tobisawa, JOUJOKA and MARAWI ROCKS. The group would then be animated and be featured on an episode of “Initial D Fourth Stage”. In August, m.o.v.e would release their 21st CD single “GHETTO BLASTER” (AVCT-30082 CD, AVCT-30088/B CD+DVD) featuring coupling song “VAGABOND” and a “Kindergarten mafia mix” remixed by motsu. The DVD version would feature the making, “motsu about Rap vol. VI” and a 5.1 Roundsounds Remix by Orbitribe. The CD single would be used for the 2004 SWATCHFLVB World Tour, the official song for the Wakeboard World Series J-ROUND 2004 NISSAN X-TRAIL CUP and ending theme for MBS “FUZZ”. In January, m.o.v.e would release their 22nd CD single “How To See You Again/Noizy Tribe” (AVCT-30093 CD, AVCT-30092/B CD+DVD). The song “Noizy Tribe” would be used for the opening theme for “Initial D Fourth Stage”. Two weeks later the group would release it’s sixth fulllength album “BOULDER” (AVCT-10152/B CD+DVD, AVCT10153 CD) which would feature thirteen tracks which would includes their 20th through 22nd CD singles. The DVD version of the albums would feature the animated opening and ending themes for seven of their songs used on the anime “Initial D”. Also an interview with m.o.v.e and “Initial D” producers “USAMI” and a music video for “Nobody Knows ~ Noa no Hakobune” which was used as an ending theme for “Initial D” (the first song from m.o.v.e used on the anime series without being released as a CD single). In the fall, m.o.v.e would release four consecutive CD singles beginning with their 23rd CD single “FREAKY PLANET” (AVCT-30102/B CD+DVD, AVCT-30103 CD, rel. Sept. 28) which featured the coupling song “The Longest Movie” and the DVD version would feature the music video and a preview of their next CD single “DISCO TIME” The group would hold a remix contest on ACIDplanet.com (and also promoting the music software ACID PRO 5) featuring their English version of the song and the winner would be featured on their upcoming full-length album “GRID”. In October, the group released their 24th CD single “DISCO TIME” (AVCT-30106/B CD+DVD, AVCT-30107 CD, rel. Oct. 26) which would feature the coupling song “This is my heartache” and the DVD version would feature the music video and a preview of “RAIMEI ~OUT OF KONTROL~”. In November, the group released its 25th CD single “RAIMEI ~OUT OF KONTROL~ (AVCT-30112/B CD+DVD, AVCT-30113 CD, rel. Nov. 23) featuring the coupling song “GIRL-YOU WANNA MOVE” and the DVD version featuring the music video for “RAIMEI ~OUT OF KONTROL~ and a preview of their upcoming CD single “ANGEL EYES”. Their music video for “RAIMEI ~OUT OF KONTROL~” 12 J!-ENT
The cover of m.o.v.e’s sixth full length album “BOULDER” and “GRID”
featured the group animated with motsu and t-kimura facing off against “Initial D” main character Fujiwara Takumi with yuri riding win the passenger seat. That same month, m.o.v.e would make their second US performance in Vienna, Virginia at Anime USA. In December, m.o.v.e would release their 26th CD single “ANGEL EYES” (AVCT-30114/B CD+DVD, AVCT-30115 CD, rel. Dec. 14) featuring coupling song “SAIL AWAY” and the DVD version would feature the music video and a preview for their upcoming album. All music videos from “FREAKY PLANET” to “ANGEL EYES” would be part of a movie titled “CROSSING TRAIL - road movie
Images of m.o.v.e’s 23rd CD+DVD single “FREAK PLANET”, 24th CD+DVD single “DISCO TIME”, 25th CD+DVD single “RAIMEI ~OUT OF KONTROL~” and their 26th CD+DVD single “ANGEL EYES”. Images courtesy of Avex Entertainment, Inc.
Photo: m.o.v.e performing on Chrstmas Day at VELFARRE (2006). Photo by T. Hasegawa
completed” to be featured in the DVD of the upcoming album “GRID” and would have an “Initial D” tie-in. In January 2006, m.o.v.e would make it’s only release in 2006 with their seventh full-length album “GRID” (AVCT10156/B, rel. Jan. 25) which would feature 15 tracks including their 23rd through 26th CD singles and included the winner of the ACIDplanet.com contest with the song “GROOVY PLANET ~London Stomp Mix~”. The DVD version would feature their short film “CROSSING TRAIL”, the making of the short film, music videos and also adding in video footage from their performance at Anime USA. Also, included is an interview with “Initial D” producer USAMI and the director in the group’s work as voice actors for their animated music video of “RAIMEI ~OUT OF KONTROL~” and four live performances at ANIMAX SUMMER FES 2005 @ ODAIBA with the group performing “DOGFIGHT”, “GHETTO BLASTER”, “Noizy Tribe” and “Gamble 14 J!-ENT
Rumble”. Also, included in the DVD is a preview for “AKIRA YAMAOKA iFUTURE LIST SPECIAL MOVIE”. This was to promote a partnership between t-kimura to remix a track on Yamaoka’s (musician and producer of Konami video game “SILENT HILL”) debut solo album “iFUTURELIST” and Yamaoka to remix “FREAKY PLANET ~rosy mix~” for the album “GRID”. Also, included is a preview for the Sony PSP “Initial D STREET STAGE” video game. In December, m.o.v.e took part in the finale week for the popular disco club VELFARRE which was closing down with a performance on “LEGEND OF RAVE X’MAS” which was held on Christmas Day. For 2007, m.o.v.e participated in “Auto Messe” events in Tokyo and Osaka and performed with 8-Ball in January and February. AVEX also sponsors “Team m.o.v.e” which the team races at the D-1 Grand
Prix USA Series races in Japan which will take place from May through November. m.o.v.e will also make their second live performance in the US at SakuraCon in Seattle, Washington. To boost their US presence, their music is now featured on the iTunes Music Store. A new CD single from m.o.v.e will be coming out this Spring and a song to be featured in the film “Speed Master” coming out in Japan this Summer. Also, a new best album is planned for the fall. There are not many groups to have such a long longevity but m.o.v.e continues to be a group that attracts fans all over the world with their music who will continue to move and support the group for many years to come.
DENNIS A. AMITH is the founder/owner of J!-ENT and is an entertainment-writer-at-large. For more information on m.o.v.e, visit their official website at: www.electropica.com
Japan’s m.o.v.e known for their music for the “Initial D” anime series is coming to the US in April!
he exciting music trio from Japan known as m.o.v.e is set to bring their unique music of rock, rap, electronica and metal to the US this April for SakuraCon 2007 in Seattle, WA. The trio consisting of lead vocalist yuri, musician and producer t-kimura and rapper motsu are celebrating their 10th year anniversary and have released a total of 26 CD singles, eight full length albums, seven remix albums and two best albums in Japan. The group is best known for the opening and closing theme songs for popular animation and video game series “Initial D”. Unlike many artists featured on an anime series with typically a single song, the group has had a total of nine songs used as theme songs for the “Initial D” series (1st STAGE through 4th STAGE). Because the popularity of the series, m.o.v.e has a dedicated fanbase all over the world. As for the members of the group, producer and musician t-kimura is known to many J-POP fans for his music for the group Favorite Blue (19962000). t-kimura has also produced songs for notable talent Hamasaki Ayumi, Shimatani Hitomi, V6 and TRF. The rapper of the group, motsu is an MC for Avex’s online music show “Channel a” and has been involved in composing and remixing music for groups like V6 and even anime such as “Crayon Shin-Chan”. As for lead vocalist yuri, she was spotted at an audition for the music variety show ASAYAN, and captured the attention of t-kimura who later selected her to become the lead vocalist of the new group he was starting up. The group which eventually became known as m.o.v.e gets its name from not
LIVE PERFORMANCES: COMING TO THE UNITED STATES
Wu Ru-jun Beijing Opera Actor and Master of the Jinghu
PHOTO: Avex Tune artists m.o.v.e (from L-R): t-kimura, yuri and motsu who will be performing at Sakura-Con 2007 in Seattle, Washington. Image courtesy of Avex Entertainment Inc.
settling into one type of music genre and is constantly moving. With the demand for their music to be released in the US, m.o.v.e’s music can now be purchased and downloaded on iTunes. Having debuted back in Oct. 1997 with their first CD single “ROCK IT DOWN” (AVDT-20009), in April their performance at Sakura-Con 2007 will definitely be a special occasion as fans will be able to celebrate their tenth year anniversary with a special one-night performance. Celebrate with m.o.v.e by pre-registering for Sakura-Con 2007 by visiting their website at www.sakuracon.org. For more information on m.o.v.e, please visit their official website at www.electropica.com.
— DENNIS A. AMITH
SAKURA-CON 2007 INFORMATION
DATES: April 6-8 LOCATION: Seattle, Washington Pre-Register now and save substantially versus at door prices. Pre-registration helps ANCEA, a state and federal non-profit organization, put on the best Sakura-Con possible! For more information please visit our website at http://www.sakuracon.org. FULL CONVENTION MEMBERSHIP RATES $45 until 2-28-2007 $60 at the door Children age 6-12 are half-price Children under 6 are free ANCEA is a non-profit organization dedicated to educating the public about popular and traditional Asian media and culture.
move super tune -BEST SELECTIONAvex Tune
AVAT-9200 (DVD Audio) | AVCT-10016 (CD only) | DURATION: 1:13:42 RELEASE DATE: December 4, 2002 1. 2. 3. 4. 5. 6. 7. 8. 9. 10. 11. 12. 13. 14. 15. 16. 17. 18. Gamble Rumble LET’S ROCK! Around The World ROCK IT DOWN Platinum Rage Your Dream Sweet Vibration Operation Overload 7 7 DAYS OF LOVE Extasy-in My DreamCome Together U.S.A. Blazin’beat Super Sonic Dance Strike On FUTURE BREEZE I WAKE YOUR LOVE! Silent White?
A J!-ENT MUSIC REVIEW
A little over five years since their debut, the group would release their first best album titled “move super tune - BEST SELECTIONS-” The album would feature a total of 18 songs which 15 were released previously as CD singles with the exception of their third and fifth CD singles “over drive” and “BREAK IN2 THE NITE” and their 8th CD single “words of the mind ~brandnew journey~” but included the songs “Extasy~in my dream~”, “U.S.A.” and “Silent white?”. Although the group has been classified as “digital rock” and “digital pop”, m.o.v.e found a way to tap into a genre bringing together rap and pop vocals and have their own style of music. For fans of m.o.v.e or the anime series “Initial D”, this album features a lot of the groups early tracks such as “around the world”, “Blazin’ Beat” and “Gamble Rumble” but even without the “Initial D” tie-in, tracks such as “platinum”, “sweet vibration” are just awesome. The best album would feature the songs in gapless format (their are chapter breaks but no two second wait), so it would play straight run like a non-stop mix. “move super tune -BEST SELECTION” was released in CD and DVD audio format. The track listing is the same but the DVD audio encoded as 96KHz and 24bit 2ch STEREO format. The DVD audio does not feature music videos but when playing, you can select the tracks via a menu and when played, the screen displays the CD single or album cover. All in all, a definitive best album that m.o.v.e fans will definitely enjoy!
— DENN IS A. AMITH
< Straight-run with the best of move
Collecting their CD singles and a few other tracks to make this a true best collection
THE DEFINITIVE “INITIAL D” MUSIC COLLECTION
AVCA-22280~1/B RELEASE DATE: March 9, 2005 3 CD’s, 39 (14/15/10) songs total The anime series “Initial D” has been a series that featured music with a lot of synth and Eurobeat (or to some “para para” music). In 2005, the definitive “Initial D” music set came out with “INITIAL D BEST SONG COLLECTION 1998-2004”. For m.o.v.e fans, the first two CD’s on this collection features 17 songs by the group as well as songs from J-POP band Every Little Thing to rock band Galla to Eurobeat songs from DUSTY, Chilu, DAVE RODGERS and MANUEL, a lot of good music in this collection. The big selling point of this collection is
INITIAL D BEST SONG COLLECTION 1998-2004
for m.o.v.e fans and Eurobeat and para para fans as the bonus third CD is a special “SUPER EUROBEAT presents THE BEST 10 from INITIAL D SUPER COMPLETE BOX 2003” album. Featuring well-known names from Avex’s Eurobeat compilations featuring DAVE MC LOUD, LESLIE PARRISH, MEGA NRG MAN, EDO BOYS, DERRECK SIMONS, MAX COVERI, NIKO, DAVE RODGERS and LOU GRANT. For those trying to hunt down the popular para para “Night on Fire” track (English version), this album features that track. An awesome collection worth purchasing!
REWIND “singles collection”
AVCT-10142-3/B (CD+DVD) | AVCT-10014 (CD only) | DURATION: 51:01/51:51 (2 CD) RELEASE DATE: March 24, 2004 1. 2. 3. 4. 5. 6. 7. 8. 9. 10. [CD 2] 1. 2. 3. 4. 5. 6. 7. 8. 9. 10. 11. Gamble Rumble SUPER SONIC DANSE FLY ME SO HIGH MUGEN Blazin’ Beat Sweet Vibration Words Of The Mind-brandnew JourneyBlue Jewel Romancing Train Come Together ROCK IT DOWN Around The World Over Drive Rage Your Dream Platinum Majestic Flight BREAK IN2 THE NITE I WAKE YOUR LOVE! FUTURE BREEZE BURNING DANCE T.R.A.P.
A J!-ENT MUSIC REVIEW
In December 2002, m.o.v.e released their first best collection featuring 15 previously released songs with a few extras. In March 2004, m.o.v.e released “REWIND - singles collection” featuring a few of those songs from “move super tune -BEST SELECTIONS” and a few extras. You will definitely find their classics like their first CD single “ROCK IT DOWN” and popular “Initial D” songs such as “around the world”, “over drive” and BREAK IN2 THE NITE” and later CD singles such as “FUTURE BREEZE”, “WAKE YOUR LOVE!” and “BURNING DANCE” in this collection. But for those wondering why the need to purchase a new collection when the last best collection had collected so many of the cool m.o.v.e songs. For one major reason, the DVD. And trust me, you want to buy the CD+DVD of “singles collection”. With past releases of music video clips from m.o.v.e have only been released on VHS in Japan (and VCD in Asia), “REWIND” (CD+DVD version) features 17 of the groups music videos on DVD. You get all the music videos of m.o.v.e from their first CD single “ROCK IT DOWN” to their 16th CD single “WAKE YOUR LOVE!” plust an extra video of “Sugar Sugar Rain”. So, a very cool m.o.v.e release but make sure you go for the CD+DVD version. Definitely worth purchasing! — DENNI S A . A M I T H
< Singles and music clips galore!
Collecting their CD singles and their music video clips in one limited edition release
YOUR FAVORITE J-POP SONGS GETTING THE EUROBEAT TREATMENT Various Artists
AVCD-17656 RELEASE DATE: March 30, 2005 DURATION: 1:12:36 If you are a Eurobeat fan, especially a J-POP fan, you have heard many remixes of Avex artists in Eurobeat or Cyber TRANCE style. For me, I actually enjoy hearing my favorite J-POP songs getting the remix treatment and I’m sure many others do as well as indicative with the release of “KAZEN PARA PARA!! presents SUPER JEURO BEST”. Included are Eurobeat remixes by DAVE RODGERS, t-kimura, SCP-Music Team and several others. What you get are 14 remixes for artists such as Hamasaki Ayumi, Koda Kumi, TRF, globe, day after tomorrow, move, dream,
KAZEN PARA PARA!! presents SUPER J-EURO BEST
Arashiro Beni, Aikawa Nanase and Favorite Blue. From remixes such as Hamasaki Ayumi’s “INSPIRE <Energy Inspire Remix>” and globe’s “DEPARTURES <The Mixmaster Remix>” to unlikely but made possible remixes for rocker Aikawa Nanase’s “BREAK OUT! <Eurobeat Remix>”, this remix collection is pretty cool! So, you get a good offering of hits from Avex past and songs from a few years ago. All in all, a very cool remix album that J-Euro fans will definitely enjoy!
AVCT-10152 (CD+DVD) | AVCT-10153 (CD only) | DURATION: 1:02:57 RELEASE DATE: January 6, 2005 1. 2. 3. 4. 5. 6. 7. 8. 9. 10. 11. 12. 13. How To See You Again DOGFIGHT Breikou Night - Bring your mic Nobody reason Lookin’On The Sunny Side REAL FACT ROCK DA HOUSE Noizy Tribe Mission 2 Gemini GHETTO BLASTER selfless Cherry blossom Noizy Tribe (English ver)
A J!-ENT MUSIC REVIEW
It’s been a year since the release of move’s last album “Deep Calm” but now the group is back with their sixth full-length album and this time heading into different music territory with a rock edge fusing digital rock/pop, hip hop, R&B and something new and fresh making this album clearly stand out compared to previous albums. From the first track “How to See You Again” (their 22nd CD single) which starts off with electric guitars and features motsu singing and then transitions to a pop segment with yuri singing pop style and then both combining together for another transition. Just awesome! The second track “DOGFIGHT” is my favorite of all m.o.v.e songs used on “Initial D”. From it’s synth intro to motsu’s rap with guitar’s blaring and leading to yuri’s smooth vocals. The third song “Breikou Night ~ Bring your mic” is a rock and hip-hop fusion song which is different territory for m.o.v.e musically and it works perfectly. The fourth track “Nobody Reason” is an R&B inspired track used for “Initial D” and the fifth track “Lookin’ On the Sunny Side” is straight hip-hop style. Then you get to songs like “ROCK DA HOUSE” which sounds like it should be played at an underground rave party. The album is so well-balanced of different styles of music that it’s great to see m.o.v.e venture into something fresh and new. As for the DVD, you get the opening and ending animated themes used on the “Initial D” anime series, an interview with move x producer “Usami” and the music video clip for “Nobody Reason”. All in all, “BOULDER” is the most ambitious album for m.o.v.e and I really respect the group for experimenting with a different sound. It has something for everyone and fans will definitely enjoy it! — DENNIS A. AM I T H
< move returns with their 6th album
move is back with their sixth full-length album featuring “INITIAL D” goodness!
MORE “INITIAL D” EUROBEAT GOODNESS
SUPER EUROBEAT presents INITIAL D ABSOLUTE ALBUM feat. KEISUKE TAKAHASHI
AVCA-26024 RELEASE DATE: November 29, 2006 DURATION: 1:08:51 With the popularity of the “Initial D” Eurobeat compilations, two new releases based on Keisuke Takahashi’s character are planned for release. The first is “SUPER EUROBEAT presents INITIAL D ABSOLUTE ALBUM feat. KEISUKE TAKAHASHI” and “SUPER EUROBEAT presents INITIAL D NON-STOP MIX from KEISUKE-selection”. Featured are pure 13 Eurobeat tracks from EDO BOYS, LOU GRANT, MEGA NRG MAN, MAX COVERI, NATHALIE, ZAZA, ROBERT PATTON, DIGITAL PLANET, DARK ANGELS, JEAN LOVE, ACE and GO 2. Also, for those who just can’t get enough of Keisuke Takashi going against Kouzou “God Foot” Hoshino”, this album is definitely for you. An added incentive for purchasing this album is that it comes with a FD3S VS BNR34 special figure which “Initial D” fans can put the two miniature cars on its road to position them drifiting with smoke and cone accessories for that added effect. Nice addition for “Initial D” fans. If you are a Eurobeat fan and love the “Initital D” Eurobeat compilations, this album is for you.
AVCT-10156B (CD+DVD) (CD only) | DURATION: 1:06:41 RELEASE DATE: January 25, 2006
1. 2. 3. 4. 5. 6. 7. 8. 9. 10. 11. 12. 13. 14. 15. GOTHICA(SYMPHONY NO.1) FADED ANGEL EYES DISCO TIME WHITE FOX THIS IS MY HEARTACHE NAMIDA 3000 MISHA(SKIT) FREAKY PLANET GIRL(YOU WANNA MOVE) DISINFECTED GENERATION RAIMEI ~OUT OF KONTROL~ SAIL AWAY FREAKY PLANET-ROSY MIXGROOVY PLANET-LONDON STOMP MIX-
A J!-ENT MUSIC REVIEW
The trio known as m.o.v.e has had a huge year in 2005 with the release of “BOULDER”, a concert in the United States, a contest, releasing their 23rd through 26th CD singles (“FREAKY PLANET”, “DISCO TIME”, “RAIMEI ~OUT OF KONTROL~” and “ANGEL EYES”) each month from September through December 2005 which would lead to their seventh full-length album “GRID” in January 2006. This album does incorporate the hip-hop and rock that they did with their last album but m.o.v.e goes back to their roots and incorporates the digital rock and Eurobeat style that they are known for and still manages to fit in some refreshing, experimentation with their music that I enjoyed with their last album “BOULDER”. For example, the album features interesting songs such as “FADED” which is very Amuroesque. Another interesting track is “MISHA (SKIT)” which is more or less an 8-bit video game sounding instrumental track which was interesting to hear on this album. Also, featured in this album is a remix by KONAMI “SILENT HILL” musician and producer Yamaoka Akira for his version of “FREAKY PLANET” and also featured on the album is a contests winner who had his remix featured on this album. The DVD accompanying this album is awesome as the short film “CROSSING TRAIL” which compiles the groups last four music videos into a film. Also, featuring the group animated and put into the “Initial D” world was a blast to watch. Also included on the DVD is the making of the short film, an interview, clip from their performance in the US and four live performances of m.o.v.e at Animax Summer Fes. 2005 @ Odaiba performing “DOGFIGHT”, “GHETTO BLASTER”, “NOIZY TRIBE” and “Gamble Rumble”. Really cool! All in all , an awesome release as the DVD is an incentive for m.o.v.e fans to buy this album. Check it out! — DENNIS A. AMI T H
< SOMETHING DIFFERENT & NEW
m.o.v.e releases their seventh full-length album with some surprises
NON-STOP EUROBEAT “INITIAL D” STYLE
SUPER EUROBEAT presents INITIAL D NON STOP MIX from KEISUKE selection
AVCA-26172 RELEASE DATE: January 31, 2007 DURATION: 1:14:31 In November, Avex released “SUPER EUROBEAT presents INITIAL D ABSOLUTE ALBUM feat. KEISUKE TAKAHASHI” featuring 13 Eurobeat tracks and coming with a special action figure play set. In January 2007, the latest “Initial D” offerings feature a Non Stop Mix based on characters Takumi and the other on Keisuke. This time the songs are gapless, so no spacing, just a non-stop mix featuring Eurobeat songs by ACE, LOU GRANT, MEGA NRG MAN, MAX COVERI, NATHALIE, ZAZA, ROBERT PATTON, DIGITAL PLANET, DARK ANGELS, JEAN LOVE, MANUEL, FASTWAY, NEO, GO 2 and EDO BOYS.
Essentially, it’s pretty much the same as the last Keisuke offering but featuring six more songs and arranged as a non-stop mix. There is one major thing I noticed is that on many songs, you will occasionally hear the revving of engines and tires squealing. It doesn’t interfere with the songs but nevertheless, those sounds are on the songs and may bother some. So, for those wanting a great selection of Eurobeat, this album is good but the added racing sounds may be a distraction for some.
A SPECIAL 10TH ANNIVERSARY TRIBU TE
B Y D E N N I S A . A M I T H & H I R O S H I TA G A WA
P H O T O G R A P H Y C O U R T E S Y O F A V E X E N T E R TA I N M E N T, I N C . V E L F A R R E C O N C E R T P H O T O G R A P H Y B Y T. H A S E G A WA
n the last ten years, m.o.v.e has been one of the few groups of Japan whose music has been able to transcend outside the country into the CD and MP3 players of listeners all around the world. With the popularity of the manga, anime and video game series “Initial D”, m.o.v.e which consists of musician and producer t-kimura, rapper motsu and lead singer yuri has been a fan favorite for their high energy music. In 2003, the group performed their first US concert in Dallas, Texas at AnimeFEST and their second performance in Virginia for Anime USA and the trio will make their return to the United States in April 2007 for Sakura-Con in Seattle, Washington for their third performance. In June 2007, m.o.v.e has a new CD single planned for release. As well as a special website in August 2007 to celebrate the trio’s 10th year anniversary. We continue our special feature article with our interview with m.o.v.e which took place a week before their performance at Sakura-Con.
J!-ENT: Let’s start off with the questions
PHOTO: m.o.v.e’s yuri, t-kimura and motsu performing at “LEGEND OF RAVE X’MAS LIVE” at VELFARRE on Christmas day 2006. Photo by T. Hasegawa.
concerning the past before m.o.v.e. The first question is for t-kimura. Before starting m.o.v.e, you were busy with favorite blue. Favorite Blue was doing pretty well but what made you want to create m.o.v.e and was it difficult producing for both groups at the time? t-kimura: It is not so difficult for me to do several projects at the same time. Sometimes I feel tired physically and mentally. But it is much hard for me to confine my variety of music into myself. It is what to say the reason why soon after the Favorite Blue debut, I started m.o.v.e was to expand the width of my music expression. m.o.v.e takes in various styles of music but this is our concept from the beginning. Motsu has several music histories such as from Hip-hop to House to Rave. I also has several music histories such as Classic, New Wave, Gothic, Industrial. We mixed these histories and tried to make m.o.v.e accessible for the world. J!-ENT: The next question is for motsu. You and t-kimura were involved as a group known as RAVEMAN. The both
of you achieved success with the song “PUMPIN” which was #1 on the Dance Charts. Looking back, how would you describe the years as being part of RAVEMAN. motsu: Thank you for this deep question! (laughing) At that time Juliana Tokyo was very popular, actually peak of its life. So we were popular and fans were also very hot at every Live. Dance music was not so acceptable for everyone before, but I could feel that dance music was becoming closer to everyone. J!-ENT: The next question is for yuri. You were discovered from the variety show ASAYAN. When you found out you were selected to be the lead singer of m.o.v.e, what was your reaction and what was the first thing you did when you found out? yuri: My parents were the ones that motivated me to audition. So my parents were glad and the family celebrated. But I don’t remember it very well now. J!-ENT: When you were a teenager, was
PHOTO: motsu inside the TEAM m.o.v.e car. Photo courtesy of Avex Entertainment, Inc.
it your dream of becoming a performer or involved in music or did you dream of doing some other work? yuri: Like many young girls I wanted to be a singer when I was younger. But I if I wasn’t spending to much effort for my dream, I wouldn’t be here today as a singer. t-kimura: Since my parents were musicians, I got into music at the age of three. When I was a kid, I used to sleep under the piano that my mother was playing. And I met my best friend when I was a junior high school student. The man is Yamaoka Akira, the producer of “Silent Hill” the KONAMI video game. At junior high school we were interested in making music. But I didn’t think I would work in the music field. Because my interest toward making something musically changed to graphic design. In fact after graduating art school, I was working as a designer. And wonder power took me back to the music world. Maybe passion towards music moved something inside of me. motsu: I had a dream to be a performer but I thought that the dream never come
true. In fact it took five years after graduating high school. During the time I was working at Ramen shop to be a cook. J!-ENT: Let’s talk about your first CD single “ROCK IT DOWN”, what experience do you remember of making and recording that song? motsu: I remember that when I saw Yuri at the studio, she looked like a “Kogyaru”. She had dark skin and white hair. But actually that was a good first impression because I felt she was a fashionable woman. Kimura and I were bad boys, so I thought we were a bad trio. t-kimura: When I handed first music to Mr. Matsuura, the President of Avex, he told me that you should do more just like your music, your crazy music. Then I opened my PC and let him listen to other music that was sleeping in my PC. The music was more my old self. And Mr. Matsuura said “This is what I want!” Then we released it as “ROCK IT DOWN”. yuri: Because of our first recording, I was very nervous about everything that I had
to do. So, I had to sing again and again to feel OK. J!-ENT: When you first performed “ROCK IT DOWN” live in front of an audience, how was that experience for each of you? motsu: In those days rap music was not so popular, but I had confidence about my rap. So, I was singing to tell everyone that this kind of music would get more popular from now on. J!-ENT: Your second CD single “around the world” and several other CD singles was used for the anime series “Initial D”. Did you get a feeling that the anime would be a big hit and people all over the world would know about your music from that anime series? motsu: I was reading all “Initial D” manga, so that was sheer pleasure to me. I could imagine this song never fail to get popular. t-kimura: Japan is a very small island country. Japan has a big music market but most of the Japanese artists and labels are not trying to make music for the world market actively.
PHOTO: m.o.v.e performing at “LEGEND OF RAVE X’MAS LIVE” at VELFARRE on Christmas day 2006. Photo by T. Hasegawa.
Of course, there is also a language problem. Though most of Japanese can’t speak English, they love American music. I felt it was a wonderful phenomenon that our music, made in a small island like Japan, went across the ocean and was accepted by foreign people. The more “Initial D” is played in foreign countries, the more we will be invited to perform in concert. And we could experience many more live performances overseas. I want to say thank the creator of “Initial D” and the staff. yuri: I knew that there are many fans of us in the US but when I went to America and performed, I couldn’t imagine that people would be singing our songs in Japanese. That surprised me. J!-ENT: You have released a total of 26 CD singles, of all the songs that you have released, is there a song that will be special to your heart and why? t-kimura: That is a very hard question for me. Because I love all our songs. But” Come Together” was the big turning point for me. This song was born at 911. Since this song, I started to think of purpose
of making songs and meaning of making songs. Now this spirit hasn’t changed. I’m not using words to express as a member of m.o.v.e, but I want to do it by ensemble and sound. yuri: The song “come together”. We made this song around 9.11. That was very shocking to me. I put the pain that I felt at that time into the song, both on lyrics and the music. And I sang this song to create a power for people who lost their family, boy friend, girlfriend, and their best friend. Also, I sang this song with my wish that world would be peaceful and no more painful incidents. motsu: My favorite song is “Romancing Train”. The melody is simple and beautiful. J!-ENT: Before we continue, we selected three questions from m.o.v.e fans. Here are there questions. For your music video “RAIMEI ~ OUT OF KONTROL~”, the three of you were animated in “Initial D” style. What was it like to be part of the “Initial D” world
not just with music but also animated? Jim Ferguson, Kansas City, Missouri yuri: I could do a simulated experience. In the main knitting, I was at a play at a gallery. Did anyone find me? motsu: I thought that my face would be seen like a bad guy, but I was impressed this was a creation for the anime world. Also, I thought that I might die. Because I am a really a big fan of “Initial D”. If I die, I can live in the anime forever. t-kimura: I’m happy about it, it’s cool. I’ve never thought to be animated would make me happy. Do you feel happy if your friend composite drawing of you? This time the staff of “Initial D” did it for us. Needless to say it’s wonderful! Now one of my hobby is making avatar. Hi everyone! I’m a big fan of your music and I’m a big fan of your remix albums. But I have a question for your remixes on your CD singles, you have interesting names for your songs like for “GHETTO BLASTER Kindergarten Mafia Mix” and for “Time Machine ~ The Rubber Club Dub Mix”. Just curious how you come up with the names
PHOTO: m.o.v.e performing live. Photo courtesy of Avex Entertainment, Inc.
for those remixes. Joshua Barton, Manhattan, New York t-kimura: Jacques le cont, Madonna’s producer, made “The Rubber Club Dub Mix”. His music is always very stylish. When I plan a remix album, I always listen to a variety of music with a lot of curiosity. motsu: Remix titles were decided after all recordings were finished. So, we were exhausted and crazy and our brains couldn’t work well. Therefore interesting titles were born. Sometimes we notice the titles are too strange that I wanted to change it. But sometimes the printing had already started, so we couldn’t change it. Hi t-kimura, motsu and yuri! I have a simple question but I was wondering what is your favorite food you like to eat in Japan and when you come to the US, what kind of experience would you like to have in America? Stephanie Lee, Irvine, CA motsu: I eat tofu and natto every day. I go to a sushi-go-round restaurant and love to eat tuna. I usually eat 24 pieces of sushi. Eight pieces out of 24 pieces are tuna. Regarding the live performances, I want to
make hotter live than before and become as one with our American fans. yuri: I like sushi and I like all Japanese food. I sometimes cook. If you come to Japan, please try to eat many Japanese foods. In the US, I want have a dynamic live performance. t-kimura: I usually like to eat Italian food. Also, I like Japanese food, especially fish. Japanese rice is very good. As for the second question, I hope everyone can enjoy beyond the wall of languages. I want to feel energy from audience. That will reflect on stage. J!-ENT: In 2003 and 2005, you performed in the United States. How was that experience to perform in front of an American audience? yuri: Compared to Japanese, American audience were hotter. Maybe they didn’t know some songs but I felt they were enjoying it. I wish that I could communicate with everyone in English. At the song, “DOG FIGHT”, everyone sung and became big chorus. That moved me. t-kimura: Before starting the live perfor-
mance, I heard everyone shouting “m.o.v.e! m.o.v.e! m.o.v.e!” At that time I felt I was happy to come to the USA all the way from Japan. That is from bottom of my heart. To hear them scream for us eliminated any hesitation that I may have felt. motsu: I was surprised at the Americans loud voice, the loud cheers. Also I was moved because a lot of fans remember our lyrics. I almost started to cry J!-ENT: Before coming to the US, were you aware that many people in America and outside of Japan listen to Japanese music and have been fans of your music? motsu: Our first performance in the USA was in Texas (AnimeFest 2003). Everyone there was very hot and cool and we enjoyed a lot together. I had never imagined it so many of us, including our own staff were very surprised. t-kimura: I didn’t notice the existence of our American fans. I heard “Initial D” was popular around the world but I couldn’t imagine our songs would become popular. Now they can buy our songs from iTunes but in those
PHOTO: m.o.v.e performing live. Photo courtesy of Avex Entertainment, Inc.
days they couldn’t buy our songs in the US. I felt that passion defeats common knowledge. yuri: I didn’t notice that there were so many American fans into our music. So before the live performance, I was worried. And the worry never disappeared. But everyone enjoyed the live performance and we became one. That was very cool and I was surprised. J!-ENT: What is the difference that you have seen between the American audience and the Japanese audience that come to see you live? yuri: Japanese audiences come to live performances to listen to music. And American audiences come to enjoy the atmosphere of a live performance. We want everyone to both listen and enjoy. And we want to enjoy together without borders. motsu: Americans have louder cheers and Japanese are half as loud. And at our Q&A panel, in Japan a few people ask questions but in the America many people did that. J!-ENT: Last Christmas, you performed at “LEGEND OF RAVE X’MAS” at VELFARRE. How did it feel to perform at VELFARRE for
the last time before the club was to close down? t-kimura: Velfarre was a very important existence for a Japanese night club scene. VELFARRE had a power that made it possible to move new trend music into main stream of Japan. VELFARRE gave stimulation to horizontally egalitarian music society in Japan. The owner is my friend and the staff are very clever. I enjoyed being involved with the club for business and for persona. I’m very sad about the club closing. But the reason they closed was not a management matter, it was about the equity of the land. I hope VELFARRE will be born in another place in the near future. Needless to say that live performance was so wonderful. I think this is not the end, this is just a ceremony to create something new. motsu: I was deeply concerned with our last performance at VELFARRE. But I am happy to share emotions with a lot of our fans. When we were done performing, I kissed the stage like Michel Jackson did. That is a good memory for me. yuri: VELFARRE was the first place where
we did a live performance, also the first place where we filmed our first music video. But I don’t feel it really is closed. There was unique atmosphere at the final “LEGEND OF RAVE X’MAS” performance. It was like high school student who was waiting for their graduation ceremony. It’s hard to express the atmosphere in words. J!-ENT: Your sixth album “BOULDER” was a unique album as tracks on the album had a very rock and hip-hop and R&B edge to it. Overall it was a refreshing to have something unique and different from previous albums, was that your goal with “BOULDER” to try something different. yuri: “ROCK” ran through a river called “m.o.v.e” and it was polished and “BOULDER” was born. That is to say, “BOULDER” is “ROCK” in m.o.v.e’s way. The three of us have different backgrounds in music and we put different sensitivity into rock n’ roll and “BOULDER” was born. But that’s not our goal. My goal is to keep making music and share them
PHOTO: m.o.v.e performing live. Photo courtesy of Avex Entertainment, Inc.
with many people and make the relationship invaluable. t-kimura: To m.o.v.e, “goal” means death. We are creating music like a trip that keeps evolving and never ends. Our previous album to “BOULDER” was “DEEP CALM”. The theme of it was death and achalasia. We removed stifling elements from “DEEP CALM” and that is “BOULDER”. I put sound which has image of a robot into BOULDER. Of course Japan has very high robot technology. Therefore it’s not for military, it’s for health care. We have no goal. To cover our own music is not my style. There may be people who think Pepsi or Coke is nice because the taste never change for a long time. But my way of living is to fight against the bitterness of evolution. motsu: Actually I had conscious feeling to do something different like “let’s have a blast”. One more thing, a lot of rap parts in the music for this album, so I was very busy with rap. J!-ENT: A question for t-kimura. In your album “GRID”, you collaborated with musician Yamaoka Akira who has a remix
of “FREAKY PLANET” and you remixed a song on his album “iFUTURELIST”. How did that collaboration come about? t-kimura: He is my best friend. He is a very cool creator. Worldwide, big hit video game “SILENT HILL” and its movie shows Akira is one of top creators in Japan. He’s such a cool guy. Akira was trying to release a solo album in Japan and his release date was very close to the release date of “GRID”. So, we tried to enjoy a collaboration together. I will continue to make great collaborations with him in the future too. J!-ENT: Let’s get to know more about you individually. Here are three questions for each of you individually. The first question is for t-kimura. What was the first instrument that you got hooked on as a musician and what was your first instrument? t-kimura: I had some synthesizers before I became professional. The model are JUNO106-C, JUNO JUPITER-8, TR-909 and TB303. After I got my No. 1 song on the Oricon chart in Japan, I bought more than 60 synthesizers and 30 drum machines. It was like not the studio of a musician but like a mu-
seum. About seven years ago, I used the auction site eBay in America to get more precious machines. As for my first music instrument, it was a YAMAHA grand piano at home at the age of three. I learned a lot through the grand piano. J!-ENT: Motsu, as a rapper, who were your hip-hop influences growing up? motsu: RUN DMC, Beastie Boys, KURTIS BLOW, TINNIE PUNKS and CHIKADA HARUO. J!-ENT: You’re a very stylish person and wondered if you enjoy shopping and what city do you love shopping at? yuri: I often go shopping in Shibuya and Ginza. And there is my favorite shop near Tokyo Tower. I usually wear clothes that I bought there. Also, I buy a lot when I go to the USA not only clothes but also candle and bath goods. I like to buy post card and household groceries too. J!-ENT: If we were to look in your MP3 or CD player right now, which artist or kind of music would we see you listening
PHOTO: TTeam m.o.v.e at D1 Grand Prix car. Photo courtesy of Avex Entertainment Inc.
to right now? t-kimura: I am impressed by creativity with renaissance thoughts. So, I love all categories of music. Let’s say for popular singers, I enjoy Madonna, Mike Shinoda of LINKIN PARK, DEPECHE MODE, DAFT PUNK, MOBY, MASSIVE ATTACK. Let’s say for underground singers, I enjoy M83 and PENDULUM etc. I love Hanz Zimmer’s film scores too. yuri: I listen to many types of music. Recently I started listening to rock n’ roll. By the way I listen to music mostly in the car. J!-ENT: As m.o.v.e has been a group which has music that constantly changes, one thing that I have noticed with each music video release, t-kimura especially motsu’s hairstyle (and hair color) changes. Is that done in purpose with a correlation with your music or is that what you tend to do quite often? motsu: As I get tired of things easily, I often change my hairstyle. But when I changed my hairstyle recently to an afro, everyone blamed it on the music I was listening to. yuri: I change my hair style because of a feeling and mood not for the purpose with our music. t-kimura: That is a result of a desire for a makeover. (laughing) The desire is going to met soon again because of the work with avatar.
J!-ENT: If you each had one word to describe “m.o.v.e”, what word would that be and why? yuri: Traffic light. Because we throw off different lights to each other and we have different roles. t-kimura: Crazy. I don’t know why but I feel so. motsu: Acceleration. I don’t know why but I can’t think of any other words. J!-ENT: Your music has been identified with the auto and racing scene, how do you feel about that? motsu: Sometimes I am invited to the race circuit and at that time I realized our songs fit the place. t-kimura: Our music has been identified with the auto and racing scene in Japan, but I think in Miami, hip-hop is relatively strong. My wish is to enjoy the collaboration with those artists. yuri: Originally I didn’t think about the racing scene but the feelings of stateliness and career that our music has fit the race world. Sometimes I see a car driving very fast with our music loudly and think “please drive safely”. J!-ENT: Avex sponsors Team m.o.v.e but curious if you ever had the opportunity to ride in a race car or experienced “drifting”? t-kimura: Splash mountain at Disneyland
is enough for me. (lauging) yuri: I haven’t ridden in a race car yet. But I rode in a race car, next to Takumi (of “Initial D”) in our anime music video. And I am a safe driver so I have no experience of drifting. motsu: I have ridden on a race car that is parked. I will never do drifting because I am very safe driver for example, I like to turn the turning signals even when I’m parking. J!-ENT: You performed at Osaka Auto Messe and Tokyo Auto Salon, how was that experience to take part in these huge auto shows. yuri: It was a totally different atmosphere from a live-house event. Because some people came to an auto-show to see the cars and others came to enjoy our live performance. I am very glad that people who come to an auto-show to see cars do join us and I am very glad to see that they enjoy our performance. t-kimura: Live space became bigger this year. We have requests from almost all the auto events. I can’t join everything but TOKYO AUTO-SALON is the biggest event in Japan. We are making our brand with a conceptual plot. Now we can’t expect results from temporary work between a company and music. We have to have long-term vision and plan deeply. motsu: The importance of music is becoming bigger and bigger at this kind of event.
PHOTO: m.o.v.e performing live. Photo courtesy of Avex Entertainment, Inc.
Four years ago the stage for where we performed was very small but now the stage is very big and has an important role in the motor show. J!-ENT: In every interview we have done for J!-ENT, we have a wordplay where we ask you five words and you give us your definition for that word. Here are the five words: a. LOVE: motsu: Life itself. t-kimura: Consideration. Not to run for one’s benefit. yuri: My favorite word. Giving thought to others. Accepting each other. Growing up together. b. SUCCESS yuri: It can be achieved when thoughts of people around me and ones of me become one. motsu: Harvest. t-kimura: Sacrifice. Success is built on sacrifice. I think successful people have to do some kind of sacrifice and they can become truly successful. c. HAPPINESS t-kimura: Family. yuri: Spending time slowly under the gentle sunshine. motsu: Sun.
d. OBSTACLE motsu: Stimulation. t-kimura: Old popular belief. yuri: It appears when everything is going well. e. INITIAL D yuri: It made my world bigger. motsu: Takumi t-kimura: Revolution. Mixture of animation and computer graphics was a revolutionary approach. J!-ENT: As a group, you have made it to your tenth year. What is the secret for the three of you staying together for so many years? t-kimura: Relaxing is the best way. yuri: We respect each other. And we never forget the impression and emotions of our live performances. motsu: I’m a bit embarrassed to tell you this, but its a gentle attitude toward music and taking it easy. J!-ENT: Looking back at your ten years as a group, what memory do you treasure the most motsu: When we were making our first album in Los Angeles, we stayed there for two weeks. At that time we banded together. yuri: I can’t choose one thing. Everything such as meeting with t-kimura, motsu, the fans, the staff, happiness and sadness is very important to me. And those things are what
makes up m.o.v.e. t-kimura: The process m.o.v.e.
J!-ENT: What are the final words you would like to leave with your fans? t-kimura: We are musicians in a small island country. I’m happy you can accept the soul of our sound beyond different languages. We are the same. Humans living on the Earth. motsu: Thank you very much for being interested in our music from a far country. I will keep giving you more surprises than the one that you expect. yuri: Thanks to our fans, we will have our tenth year anniversary this year. There are people who wait for our music. That fact gave us a lot of power and why we are here. We keep moving and want to live up to the fans expectation. DENNIS A. AMITH is the founder/owner of J!-ENT and is an entertainment-writer-atlarge. HIROSHI TAGAWA is J!-ENT Chief of Operations, Japan For more information on m.o.v.e, visit their official website at: www.electropica.net
WHAT IS DRIFTING? Drifting is a high-skill level motor-sport in which drivers control a car while it slides from side to side at high speed through a fixed course. It is similar to Rally racing on ice barn, but is done on a tarmac and judged on speed, angle of attack, execution and style rather than just who finishes the fastest. Drift cars are typically compact to midsized, rear-wheel-drive sport cars. The goal is to apply enough power to the rear wheels to break the tires’ traction and initiate a slide while accelerating the vehicle forward, or “drift” Once a drift is initiated, it must be maintained through the turn using nearly a full power, a tap of braking and precise counter steering. WHAT IS D1 GRAND PRIX? Determination of who has the coolest driving style. D1 Grand Prix is a sport, which is judged, based on who has the coolest and radical drifting performance style. Drifting is a way of driving that force the rear tires slide while controlling the pass of forward motion. The steering wheel is turning to the same side of the sliding direction, and drivers are to control the vehicle in extreme speed, often exceeding 120mph, and driving conditions. Drifting is an extremely difficult driving style that requires a high level of skill and technique to control the car in the realm of the uncontrollable. It’s very amusing to watch each driver’s performance as well. In addition, unlike Rally and other motor sports, the determination of winner/loser is largely based on driver’s skill instead of the machine advantages. D1 Grand Prix is all about the rivalry of each driver’s drifting skill. HOW DO I PARTICIPATE IN D1? Obtaining the D1 license. - “Must be a D1 license holder in order to participate in D1GP. “ Maintain good results at D1 Drivers search events that are certified by D1 Grand Prix Officials. Or if a driver has fairly good reputation in other motorsports, then the judges may grant a right to participate in D1 Grand Prix. Qualifying round - 50 to 70 drivers down to 30 to 40 drivers Only the D1 license holders are allowed to participate. D1 Grand Prix always starts from the Qualifying round. Participation is limited to drivers who already obtain a D1 license. However, the top 10 drivers in series ranking at that time (series ranking of the past year for the first round) are exempt from the qualifying round. The highest record of participating drivers in 2004 series was 97 drivers at the qualifying round. The drivers are judged by solo run’s performance at qualifying round. They are given 2 or 3 judging runs. The highest point out of those 2 or 3 runs will be used for the final judgment. The points are given based on following elements: [Angle] , [Speed], [Lines] (closer to a given clipping points is better) [Engine’s throttle angles] (wide open throttle is better) [Whether the vehicle accelerates on the straightway] According to the point earned, the top 20 drivers plus the 10 ceded drivers proceed to the actual First round. The qualifying round usually takes place a day before the main D1 event. Tsuiso Tournament - 16 drivers down to 1st place driver. “The most intense battle starts from this point.” This Tsuiso battles will present many perfect drift performances of top drivers going side by side, to grab the taste of victory. The judging runs begin after competing 2 vehicles go for a practice run for warm-up. The line is no longer drivers concern; it’s the battle against survival. It would be a loss if a chasing driver is left behind. The chasing driver will win once he closes in on the leading driver and takes the inner line. Nevertheless, there is no guarantee of proceeding to the Best-16 round due to machine advantage since the judgment is also based on the drifting angle and considering the each machine’s potentials. Large amount of points will be deducted when the vehicle spins out and/or in case of under steer during performance. There are cases where the leading driver intentionally slows down dramatically in order to force the chasing driver to swerve straight while drifting.
THE 411 ON DRIFTING
Source courtesy of Avex Entertainment, Inc. HISTORY OF DRIFTING The Japanese towns of Rokkosan, Hakone, Irohazaka, and various hill climbs in Nagano are all steeped in legends of the origins of drifting. No one can really pinpoint drifting’s actual birthplace but the movement started in the mid 1960s. Like many forms of professional racing today, the modern interpretation of drifting evolved from a form of illegal street racing held on windy mountain roads called touge (pronounced toegeh). Touge was practiced by extremely dedicated enthusiasts known as rolling zoku (pronounced zoe-koo) whose only goal was to trim precious milliseconds off their time between two points. Eventually, some of these rolling zoku began to adopt driving techniques used by rally drivers, techniques to clear a corner quickly without sacrificing too much momentum. As touge drivers started to emulate the rally racers techniques, they discovered that not only did their driving performance and times improve, the rush was much more intense. From touge, drifting was born. THE DRIFTING MOVEMENT EVOLVES About the same time touge evolved into drifting, some of the rolling zoku came off the mountains to bring their new sport to the urban jungles of Japan. The urban drifters added their own flavor to the sport with their flamboyant driving style and outrageous vehicles. Eventually, word of the spectacle spread and fans began showing up to witness drifting’s amazing drivers and machines. But as popular as drifting had become, it was relegated to underground status by the risks and image associated with illegal street contests. Eventually, the popularity of drifting propelled the sport into the mainstream and competitors started to organize and take their home-grown trials to the track. The gatherings were originally just for fun until the cars and driving skills became so refined that things started to get competitive. From the initial organized trials, regional drift contest open to the public and professionally judged, known as ikaten (pronounced ee-kah-ten) created by Video-OPTION, were began all major cities of Japan. The Drivers Search events let local drivers of all backgrounds show off their skills and compete with each other. For awhile, Drivers Search events satisfied the thirst of drifting fans and drivers but as skills and techniques improved, and manufacturers started producing drifting-specific components, it was clearly time to raise the bar.
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