Polysics at The Rave, tonight!
the gig 7 p.m. Monday, Oct. 22
genre Technicolor pogo punk
where The Rave, 2401W. Wisconsin Ave.,
how much $20.
Milwaukee appearances by bands such as Polysics ï¿½ celebrated dance-punksters and Japanï¿½s answer to Devo ï¿½ are few and far between, so heading to The Rave for the MySpace tour would be totally worth it, regardless of who is co-headlining tonight (Say Anything and Hello Goodbye).
The band calls itself Japanese new wave (a.k.a. ï¿½technicolor pogo punkï¿½) and sings in Japanese, English or space language (more on that later). They also wear crazy outfits; playing live, theyï¿½re equivalent to a truckload of Red Bulls.
The band doesnï¿½t speak English, so its publicists put together a bunch of questions for singer Hiroyuki Hayashi and translated the answers for us fans of sweaty, jump-up-and-down music.
Q: How did Polysics form?
A: I was watching Devoï¿½s music video clips when I was a high school student, and I was shocked by it. That impact totally overturned the values of music I had been listening to until then, and the experience was that much strong. Devo was dressed in matching yellow jumpsuits, moving around the stage looking like broken robots, and shouting a crazy cover of ï¿½Satisfactionï¿½ by the Rolling Stones in a mechanical motion, and I thought it was much more punk than just acting like a gang by greasing oneï¿½s hair. ï¿½Oh my god, this is the new wave punk!ï¿½ I was so impressed. And I thought, ï¿½I want to do new wave punk dressed in a jumpsuit like Devo!ï¿½ Thatï¿½s how I formed Polysics.
Q: It is clear that Devo was an inspiration, any others?
A: I think I was influenced mainly by the New Wave and Techno Pop in late 70ï¿½s – early 80ï¿½s. Other than that, XTC, Kraftwerk, Revilos, New Order, Gang of Four, Wire, Sparks, etcï¿½Also, I think I am influenced by King Crimson, Yes, Deep Purple, Led zeppelin, etc, as well.
Q: Have you ever met Devo?
A: We went to Los Angeles in 2000 and visited Devoï¿½s studio without making an appointment. Then we found all the Devo members there in the middle of recording, meaning we could meet everyone all at once! It was so nice of them to welcome us, and they even offered us Coca-Cola.
After that, we met them again at Summer Sonic 2003. Since then, they have come to our gigs in Los Angeles. And two years ago, their ex-drummer, Alan, came to see our year-end show in Japan!
Q: What is ï¿½Space Languageï¿½?
A: This is the language which is neither English, nor Japanese, but one which is impossible to be literalized (it’s) put out when we hear our own rhythms and electronic sounds in super large volume.
Q: Do you ever perform without sunglasses?
A: Yes. It was the gig at Seattle two years ago. We put the sunglasses and badges and stuff in a case at the backstage of the club in Olympia and left it there. (The live set in Seattle) went very good, but we were so embarrassed at first…Then we went back to Olympia to find the case ï¿½ we found it safe!
Q: Is it hard to see with the sunglasses on?
A: Very hard. But I got used to it, as Iï¿½ve been wearing it for like 10 years.
Q: What was the inspiration behind covering ï¿½My Sharona?ï¿½
A: It was just a feeling. One day, we were preparing for the stage of a Japanese rock festival and talking like, ï¿½Hey, letï¿½s do a cover song, the song that everyone knows and gets excited about.ï¿½ We got two candidates ï¿½ ï¿½Hotel Californiaï¿½ and ï¿½My Sharona.ï¿½ We just picked up the latter one by feeling. Polysics often does covers of various artists since we think we can show how our musical style is and how amusing it is by covering the otherï¿½s songs.
Q: What does Polysics mean?
A: The name of the synthesizer I bought first in high school days was Polysix made by Korg. The name was well-sounding, and I really liked it, so I named the band after it by changing its spelling.
Q: What are the top five artists you are listening to right now?
A: Foetus, Ministry (its early era), KMFDM, Genesis, Einsturzende Neubauten
Q: What is the biggest difference between Japanese and U.S. audiences?
A: U.S. audiences…their vigorousness, especially for those from West Coast! Sometimes they terrify me. (Laugh)
Q: What is your favorite American food?
A: Whopper sold by Burger King. We love it since it has so much meat and vegetables, making it so heavy! Since there are only a few Burger King stores in Japan, we eat it as much as possible when we go to the U.S.