Translated from CAPCOM, 2005.08.06
On an undisclosed date, in a metropolitan location, we interviewed the composers of the theme song of Rockman X8, Janne da Arc's yasu (vocals) and kiyo (keyboard)! They had a lot to talk about, ranging from music to games! In addition, these two also provided us with a video interview!
After an hour of playing Rockman X8, it was finally time for the interview...
CAPCOM: So far, you've worked on the theme song for the anime "Black Jack" (Gekkouka). What was it like working on the theme for a video game?
yasu: Even though it was the first time that we had done something like that, we used the resources available to us. We tried to clear the game, but it was taking much too long. Lately, we just started with making demos and going from there.
CAPCOM: When we asked you to write the song for us, had you known about Rockman before? yasu: Of course we knew about it! We've been buying the games since they were on the Super Famicom! [AKA the Super Nintendo.]
CAPCOM: The Rockman X series?
yasu: No, from the beginning! The Rockman series!
CAPCOM: Those released on the Famicom [Nintendo]?
yasu: I went over to my friend's house and played on his Famicom!
CAPCOM: When you first heard the theme song for Rockman X8, what were your impressions of it?
yasu: At first, I didn't think the opening flowed together very well. But, when we used it, and heard it flow with the opening of the game, I became increasingly overjoyed with it. Buying the game, and seeing the opening with the theme song absolutely, unconditionally there, it was a dream come true.
CAPCOM: Recently, you've let us use the song "Wild Fang" for Rockman X8, crediting yasu and kiyo for the lyrics, and kiyo for the composition. Which part do you feel was completed first?
kiyo: The melody itself was our first priority.
CAPCOM: When you were composing the piece, did you receive any inspiration from Rockman?
kiyo: To be honest, I was just constructing the music around a central idea. Now, I think it fits readily to Rockman, but when I was arranging it I was just giving it my best effort. Then, it started to really catch on as the theme.
CAPCOM: What about the lyrics?
yasu: Listening to the things Rockman talks about, we composed the lyrics. Since we were composing the theme for Rockman, we met with the image of "struggle". The words we used acknowledge this feeling.
CAPCOM: When you watched the images of the Rockman X8 opening overlaid with the song, what were your impressions?
yasu: Oh, that's so unbelievably awesome!
CAPCOM: Looks like CAPCOM is pretty famous! I think that the song matches really well with the "sensation of progress"...
yasu: Really, the song reflects that image excellently! (Smiles) It really does reflect that, doesn't it... Did we give the impression of being serious?
CAPCOM: We played the song for our staff, and they were pleased with the image you drew with it, but does our work suit it? [With the opening animations and such.]
yasu: Oh, it's so cool! We can watch it and hear the song well, too. As I thought it would, the images totally intensify the meaning of the song. We feel like we've made a sort of PV with it. (Capcom annotation: PV is an abbreviation for "Promotion Video".) If that's the case, let's make a PV for "Wild Fang" with it! Since everyone did so well, wouldn't the PV we made be good too? (Smiles)
CAPCOM: Did you ever have the feeling of "Oh! I wanted to hear it this way?"
yasu: The things the Rockman series discusses, those songs, we grew up with them. Surmounting obstacles, continuing on; the theme has the feel of "I'm going to overcome this myself". I think that Rockman and the music of Janne da Arc suit one another well. When I see that image, I think this song was good for expressing that.
CAPCOM: By the way, do you play video games often?
yasu: I still play action games and RPGs, absolutely.
CAPCOM: What other games do you play, just for an example? Of course, you may respond with games made by other companies as well.
kiyo: Ah, I have one! I like Grand Theft Auto 3.
yasu: Eh? What, what? Why didn't you say that before? Do you have all of them?
kiyo: Of course. Though, you're involved in some shady stuff in the game, you can still do a lot, so it's still fun.
CAPCOM: Do you have a favorite game character?
yasu: Absolutely, Dante! (From Devil May Cry) Isn't he just the coolest?
CAPCOM: Hey, you think so? That's a surprise! I thought it would be a character from another company!
yasu: Hey, what's that? You thought I'd like Yuu or something? (Laughs.) [Note: I had a hard time finding characters from Capcom games, but both of the characters I found with names that could be shortened to Yuu were both voluptuous women.] That first sequence (in Devil May Cry) was really nicely done!
CAPCOM: Even in the office, you're laughing a lot...Have you tried Devil May Cry 3 yet?
yasu: No, not yet. But I did buy both 1 and 2. 3 just came out yesterday, didn't it? Since we were choosing songs yesterday [probably to go on Joker, though I can't say for sure], I didn't get a chance to buy it yet! But I reserved it...(Smiles) Since the process of selection was already postponed for a week, it's a real challenge for me, thinking "Aaaa~ looks like I can't play it yet.~" (Smiles.)
CAPCOM: But, please check out the demo for 3! Since you're both from Kansai, you'll really get into it!
yasu: No~ I totally want to, but people will start thinking, "Hey, he plays too much!" That is, I always have the energy of a boy when I play those games, I don't stop!
CAPCOM: What did you think of Rockman X8 as compared to the previous Rockman games?
yasu: It's excellent! I can't finish it, even though when I got to the opening screen I thought "I can so do this!" I guess I'm about as smart as a grade school student, then. Even though I've got more than ten years on them...
CAPCOM: Do you have a favorite character in Rockman X8? I noticed you were using Axel quite a bit.
yasu: I figured, Axel's easy for me to use...his rapid-fire style tickles my male instincts, I suppose...
CAPCOM: Thank you for the long interview today.