FLOW Interview @ Anime Expo 2016
FLOW debuted in 2003 with their 1st single “Blaster” and is famous for their Naruto opening theme songs such as “GO!!!” and “Remember” as well as Naruto-Shippuden’s opening theme song “Sign”.
In 2015, they came out with their 2nd Anime Best album “FLOW ANIME BEST Kiwami” and traveled to Japan, Taiwan, America, Canada, Brazil, Peru, Chile, Argentina to their first world tour “FLOW WORLD TOUR 2015 Kiwami”. Hear what they had to say as we talk to them about their first appearance Los Angeles performing in Anime Expo held at the Los Angeles Convention Center.
T-ONO: Could you please introduce yourselves?
KEIGO: I'm FLOW's vocal KEIGO.
KOHSHI: I’m also the vocalist, KOHSHI.
GOT'S: Bassist, GOT’S.
TAKE: Guitarist, TAKE.
IWASAKI: And I am the drummer, IWASAKI.
T-ONO: You just entered your 14th anniversary this year! Congratulations~!
FLOW: Thank you very much!!
T-ONO: So this is your first time in Los Angeles and it looks like you traveled a lot so far. You have posted pictures of Santa Monica and Hollywood on your Twitter and Instagram, but where exactly did you go?
KEIGO: We arrived yesterday and we went to Hollywood using the Metro and this morning we went to Santa Monica.
T-ONO: Did you get to go to Beverly Hills? The Pier? I have never been there so I would like to know what you enjoyed there?
TAKE: Yes, yes we got to go the Pier. The ocean was really pretty and the weather was amazing so I really wanted to go swimming.
KEIGO: We just didn’t have time to go.
T-ONO: Oh! So did you bring a bathing suit?
TAKE: Actually I didn’t bring a suit so I was just going to jump in.
KEIGO: You’re going to be soaking wet!! (laughs)
T-ONO: This is your first time in Los Angeles, but you have been all over the countries for your concerts and tours, is there any interesting memories you would like to share?
KOHSHI: We got to ride a boat down the Amazon River in Brazil and that was really fun.
T-ONO: Were you able to see any animals like crocodiles?
KOHSHI: There was an attraction where we got to fish these ginormous fish called the Arapaima.
T-ONO: The rivers have piranhas and other fish as well right?
KOHSHI: Yeah there was piranhas too.
KEIGO: But even though these fish were ginormous, we were only given a stick to fish them so there was no chance for us to win.
GOT'S: There was no chance for us to fish those things.
TAKE: It’s more about that we enjoy the tugging with the fish. Like “Oh! They ate the bait.”
T-ONO: Oh so you were actually able to get a couple of hits then.
KEIGO: Oh it was as soon as you dropped it in.
IWASAKI: Yeah the fishes were like in a corf so there was a lot of them.
TAKE: What you do is, you put a little tiny fish on the end of the stick and you drop it down. Well when one of the fish went to go eat it splashed and landed on GOT’S head.
GOT'S: I’m always the one who has bad luck with these kinds of events.
T-ONO: It wasn't even fresh fish then...
GOT'S: No it was more like the smelly old kind of fish and it was on my head.
KEIGO: It went Pita! Right on his head.
T-ONO: Is there any other interesting stories? Maybe more in the city?
TAKE: Well there was a member that had a horrible experience in France.
KEIGO: I got pick-pocketed in France’s metro station. I was by myself because it was free time and I really like soccer so I was going to go buy a soccer jersey for myself. And apparently it was already gone when I was at the entrance. I had my bag in front of me and I look down and it was a little bit open so I looked and my wallet was gone.
KOHSHI: It was a total pro move.
KEIGO: Half crying, I got off the train, but I don’t know where I am, but thankfully I had my phone on me.
T-ONO: At least you didn’t get your passport taken. Then you would have been in bigger trouble.
KEIGO: The fact that the concert was already over and I was having a great time enjoying the European views and now ready to get my souvenirs when I got pick-pocketed and from there on I just wanted to go home (laughs)
T-ONO: So how does your fans from overseas differ from the fans in Japan? Do they have any similarities?
KEIGO: Each one of the fans from overseas show their entire expression 120%. People here in America, France as well as people in South America all have the expression and feeling of “I’m enjoying myself!!!”.
KOHSHI: All the countries can relate is that they are all passionate and enthusiastic during the concerts.
KEIGO: You never get to research how the fans going to be so it’s very interesting.
KOHSHI: Japanese fans are typically very shy. They don’t really come at you with their expressions.
T-ONO: When you mention it, Japanese fans mostly use their towels and penlights, but not with their full bodies.
KEIGO: Fans get riled up when the staff are doing their sound checks too.
T-ONO: Is there any interesting stories about your fans that you met overseas?
KOHSHI: One time there was an autograph session in Brazil and I looked up to see a very familiar kanji name, and there was a tattoo of my real name on one of the fan’s arms: Asakawa Kohshi.
GOT'S: You don’t see too much of that in Japan.
T-ONO: Changing the subject a little bit, what is your favorite single/album song? Of course it can be a song that you like to play or sing as well.
IWASAKI: Picking one is hard, but I am actually excited about the newest single that is coming out “Kaze no Uta/BURN”. Tomorrow is the going to be the worldwide debut for “Kaze no Uta”.
T-ONO: I’m really excited! It’s not supposed to be out till August correct?
IWASAKI: Exactly and it’s getting leaked tomorrow.
KEIGO: It’s going to be leaked tomorrow??
GOT'S: You make it sound like you don’t want them to listen to it.
KOHSHI: We want to keep it to ourselves. (laughs)
T-ONO: Does the other members have a song that they really like?
KEIGO: Mine would have to be Remember. It was the song right after I came back from my accident as well as we got to do the opening for Naruto. It is an anime song so whenever we come overseas, we sing this song and the audience sings it with us so it makes me really happy.
TAKE: I think you can’t forget about GO!!! It really represents our band and almost everyone knows this song and it connected us with anime as well. We didn’t expect this song to create such a long relationship, and we get to still perform this song which is makes it very memorable for me to get to make this song.
KEIGO: If it wasn’t for GO!!! We would never have been able to come here in the first place.
T-ONO: Lastly could you give us a message to your fans from around the world?
KEIGO: As IWASAKI had stated, this summer we are coming out with our a new single “Kaze no Uta/BURN” and it is another anime and game themed song. So of course we would like fans from Japan to listen to it, but also to fans from overseas would be able to listen to it and we can come back to perform. After given the opportunity to have a world tour, we realized that coming to the country is the best way to express our feelings through the concert. So we would like fans to keep chasing after us and staying with us. Thank you very much.