Photo: Suzuki Eight talks about his rocker rocker days! Eight Suzuki talks about his rocker days: “I was also in HOKOTEN. | FRIDAY DIGITAL

Photo: Suzuki Eight talks about his rocker rocker days! Eight Suzuki talks about his rocker days: “I was also in HOKOTEN.

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Mr. Eight in his rock band days. He was in charge of vocals and was called “Nanase.
The present Mr. Eight. Surprisingly (?) He is a sweetheart.

Mr. Eight Suzuki has received numerous awards for his journalism for his rigorous pursuit of the former Unification Church issue. His radio program “Suzuki Eight Midnight Talking” (InterFM), for which he serves as the personality, is currently receiving favorable airplay.

Although Mr. Eight has a hard-core image as a journalist who has never backed down from a stand against the former Unification Church, it is not widely known that he was actually a “visual” band member until his mid-twenties. He says that his most recent live performance was with “Dakkugokumon Doyokukai “.

He graciously accepted our offer to talk about rock and metal music, and appeared in a meeting room in Tokyo wearing black leather pants and a white leather jacket. He called the waiter and ordered a “blueberry yogurt. Mr. Eight began to speak in a different mood than when he was pursuing the issue of the former Unification Church.

I am from Shiga Prefecture,” he said. “When I was in junior high school, I was exposed to Western music on a local TV show, and that’s when I got hooked on rock music. At first I listened to Western pop and rock music such as Duran Duran, but gradually I started listening to heavy metal and hard rock.

After entering Nihon University, Mr. Eight himself began to aspire to be in a band.

Influenced by Billy Sheen, the bassist of an American metal band called TALAS, I started playing the bass guitar when I was a university student. The first time I played in front of an audience was at a hokoten (a pedestrian street in Harajuku). I jumped in and played in a popular blues band at the time. I tried to form a band and wrote to music magazines looking for members, but in the end I couldn’t get anyone to join. When I was in college, I was into RATT, an LA-based metal band, so I played background music at the coffee shop where I worked part-time and was told by the manager that it was “too loud! The manager would get mad at me for playing background music at the coffee shop where I worked (laughs).

It was after graduating from college that he formed the band of his dreams.

Flyer of “Phantasmagoria,” the first band he formed.

After graduating from college, I was allowed to play bass in several bands before switching to vocals and forming the band “Phantasmagoria. At the time, we played dark, intense songs, partly due to the influence of MORRIE, the vocalist of the hard rock band DEAD END. The name of the song was ‘Spellbound’ or something like that (laughs).”

Looking at a picture of Mr. Eight at that time, he looks like a “visual-kei” with long hair and full make-up. The name of the band was “Nanase,” taken from the “Nanase” series by Yasutaka Tsutsui, a favorite of his. Mr. Eight sang vocals, wrote lyrics, and composed music.

I didn’t intend it that way, but I was seen as a ‘visual-kei,'” he said. At the time, I thought, ‘I have a deep commitment to music and musicality, so I don’t want people to lump me in with the ‘visual-kei’ crowd.

At first glance, the band is visual-kei, but inside it is dark and punk. Mr. Eight formed a band with a unique style. Was there some kind of message behind it?

I didn’t. I was more of an onlooker at the time. Rather, I was an onlooker at the time, feeling ‘empty’ and nihilistic. That’s why I wrote only introverted, dark songs.

At a live performance. Before singing vocals, he played bass guitar. He is a handsome man.

Mr. Eight calls himself an atheist, but it was not until he was in his 30s that he became interested in philosophy and thought and developed a journalistic spirit to pursue cults. Still – he was a visual band member who ” received offers to be a model” (Mr. Eight). He must have been quite popular.

Not really. After the bubble was over and I was out of college, I was a loser for being in a band (laughs). (Laughs.) However, there were not a few relationships with women that were not very admirable. …… Looking back, there were some behaviors that I should deeply reflect on. I was very happy to have people listen to the songs I wrote, even though there were many things that happened during my time in the band. I was working as a contractor while doing music, but there were band members around me who were not working at all and were living like pimps. There was also a bad custom of hanging out with fans. It was a glimpse of the negative side of humanity.”

Mr. Eight quit the band at age 26.

If I couldn’t get results by the time I was 25, I was going to give it up,” he said. I have no regrets. I felt there were limits to my talent and singing ability, and I wasn’t very good at working with my bandmates.

When asked if, now that he was the man of the hour, he could expect to attract a large audience if he resumed his music career and held live concerts, Mr. Eight immediately replied, “No. I don’t have any regrets.

No. I have no regrets. I have no regrets.

For Mr. Eight, music is “the sustenance of life,” even if he does not pursue a musical career .

He says that he is an analogist and does not use iTunes. At one time, he used to play music by a rock band called MOJA while driving,” he says, but these days he listens to the car radio. He says he enjoys the chance encounters with the music on the radio.

The gap between his visuals and his musicality was a feature of his life.
The current Mr. Eight in his fashionable white leather jacket.
He used to write introverted songs out of a sense of emptiness.

Mr. Eight’s view of the Japanese music industry today is harsh.

There are people who see music as a means to an end, not an end in itself,” he says. Even if a composer provides a good song, are the singers really making the most of it? The Japanese music industry is losing out to K-pop. If this continues, we will lose out to the rest of the world. I hope that this is the era in which the ‘real thing’ survives.

His top picks are “Don’t Raise the Death Flag” by Dakkugokumon Doyokai and “Serafine” by MORRIE, both of which have been the talk of the town for their unique music videos.

Dakkushugokumon Doyokai is fun to listen to while successfully digesting elements of death metal. When I go to a live concert, a PV with a story attached to the lyrics is shown, and the audience calls out, “That’s it! and the audience shouts “That’s it! Morrie’s “Seraphine” is philosophical and profound. It is about Noah’s Ark and the destruction of mankind.

Even in the Japanese music scene, which has had a difficult time receiving recognition, there are artists who have caught the attention of the public.

Hikaru Yamamoto, support bassist for YOASOBI, is a good soloist. His solo work is also good. Also, people with ‘quirks’ in their voices, like Yonezu Genji, are good. Onizuka I also like Chihiro. Other female singers who have a dark or negative element to them, and who are able to penetrate through, are Cocco, and overseas, I also like Julia Michaels. I don’t think that my experiences in the band have directly influenced my current speech activities. However, if I could take my current self to the past, I think there is something I could express.”

Although he does not intend to make music his main focus in the future, Eight said that as part of his journalistic activities, he plans to perform the theme song of a cult at the “Evening of Cult Religious Images and Music” event to be held at Naked Loft Yokohama on December 28.

What will Mr. Eight, who has gone through many twists and turns, express in his performance? The interest is endless.

His visual appeal has been well received, and he has received offers to be a model. This is one of the works for which he served as a model.
  • Photography and text by Yuria Fukatsuki

    Yuria Fukatsuki graduated from the Department of Political Science, Faculty of Law, Keio University. Representative of the Fukatsuki Office. She writes for numerous media and also works as an actress, model, belly dancer, and FM radio personality. She is also actively involved in animal welfare activities and produced her own TV program "Animal Welfare, Living in Harmony with the Earth" for TV Kanagawa.

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