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Z-Sect interview 1989

posted Feb 27, 2011, 1:30 AM by mark bites   [ updated Jan 19, 2016, 1:19 PM ]
This is the original text from the Z-Sect interview I used for the English history piece I posted on JNG.

Rockin'f 89.3:

Z-SECTは87年12月にパラノイアを脱退したNOVが中心となって結成された。サウンドは、パラノイアの流れをくむ硬派なへヴィ・メタル。88年10月にリリースしたミニ・アルバム『N.O.V』のことを中心に、彼ら自身のことも語ってもらった。

―――4曲入りピクチャー・アルバム『N.O.V』はいつごろ発表されたの?
NOV:去年の10月ぐらいかな。バンドを結成してからすぐにつくったんです。 4月にバンドを結成して、レコーディングをしたのが6月。

―――早かったね。
NOV:そうなんですよ。ボクらもまだサウンドが固まってなかったんで、ちょっと早すぎるなと思った‥‥‥。曲もなかったし(笑)。でも、ナイト・ギャラリーに出してみようって強く言われたんで(笑)。

―――曲がなかったから4曲入りのアルバムになったの?
NOV:そうです。いちおうレパートリーはいろいろあったんですけど、とりあえず安定している曲を選んだわけです。

―――サウンドはかなり硬派に感じだけど?
NOV:そうです。ギターのHYDEがおもに曲を作ってます。ボクも歌メロやコードを考えたりしますけど。

―――どういうサウンド・スタイルを目指している?
NOV:やっぱり聴いていて"鋭い"という感じの音にしたい。でも、パワー・メタルとかスラッシュ・メタルといったジャンルにとらわれたくはないです。歌詞は、神秘的かつ幻想的なサスペンス・タッチのものにしています。

―――ところで、なぜピクチャー・アルバムに?
NOV:そのほうがインパクトがあると思ったから。デザインはレーベルにまかせましたけど。

―――レコードの出来上がりに関して自分たちではどう思う?
NOV:まだまだ。大阪にこういうバンドがいることを知ってもらいたくて作ったんです。レコードの売れゆきどうこうよりも、とりあえずバンドの名前とこういう音楽をわかってくれたらいいなあと思って。だから、自分たちではこのレコードには満足してません。ほんと、まだまだという感じです。

―――ことしの活動は?
NOV:今はまだ地元の大阪を中心にライヴ活動しているだけです。で、4月ぐらいにツアーをしようかなと以前は考えてたんですけど、もうちょっとバンドのサウンドを固めたいから、ツアーがいつごろになるかは未定です。演奏がうまいとかへたとかじゃなくて、お客さんに訴えるような部分をもっと‥‥‥。それに自信をつけたらツアーをやろうと思ってます。
Before Z-Sect was formed, there was another band called Paranoia. After going strong for a year, mainly in Osaka, with at least one national tour for the promotion of their album "Come From Behind", Paranoia started to fall apart due to staleness in performance and differences regarding the music and musicality. Because of this NOV decided to leave this band at the end of 1987 with his last gig being in January 1988.

Ex-Aion vocalist, Hisayoshi Hiraga's predecessor, Satoru Sasano took over the microphone a fortnight later. Paranoia, now fronted by Satoru, would play on March 13th together with Aion in Hisayoshi's first gig with the band at Neyagawa Vintage Bar. But it would only take 4 months since the line-up change before the band announced it's dissolution. As of May 1988 the band was no more. The official reason was given as mentioned above.

At this time in April, NOV had formed Z-Sect with Hyde on guitar, Lunatic Luna on bass and Sheen on drums. The band was in various ways a decendant from Paranoia because they sought to play in the same aggressive style, sometimes refered to as being a 'hard-liner'. Almost immediately the band decided to record an EP. Even though their repertoire was small and consisted of unfinished tracks, they managed to find four songs they declared ready for recording. This is mostly courtesy of Hyde who was quick in writing most of the music for the band and took care of the melody and chords etc. Without wasting any time they recorded the songs in June, sent it off to Night Gallery records (Paranoia's label) and told them they could make the design for it as well.

Z-Sect wanted to create a unique sound that was above all "sharp". They didn't want to fit into a certain category like power metal or thrash metal and they tried to reflect this style in their lyrics which they called fantastically suspenseful and mysterious.

The EP was released as a picture vinyl in October 1988 and later rereleased on CD by UK Project. Simply named "N.O.V." it featured four tracks; Emergency, Back Wash, Desolate Night & From Beyond The Shadow (Inori). The reason for the pictured vinyl type was because of it's impact, so they thought. They felt at that time that Osaka needed bands such as Z-Sect. Both Aion and it's reincarnation Mein Kampf were well received by critics and coverage in magazines was sometimes better than some counterparts from Tokyo. The fate that awaited Paranoia and Z-Sect also seemed to have hit Aion and Mein Kampf, who were together for just over a year, until Aion reformed in mid-1986 to become one of the most succesful bands out of Osaka. But it didn't really get off the ground for Z-Sect as they had hoped and the release of their EP did not leave them with a feeling of satisfaction.

In February of 1989 Z-Sect had retreated back to Osaka to play live houses there. They had hopes of organizing a national tour around April. But because they were unsatisfied with the bands sound they opted to wait to try and see if they could change or optimize their sound so that visitors could hear and see that Z-Sect was truly one of a kind. They were not at all bad at performing. They decided to take a chance at pulling off a tour after they had regained their confidence.

It's unclear to me at this moment how Z-Sect ended exactly, but it would not be strange to think they ended the same way Paranoia did. Since Hisayoshi left Aion in June and would reform Rosenfeld with Youichi Horizoe shortly after, NOV joined and has been with the band ever since. Lüna and Sheen went on to form Beet-Sweet (ビート・スウィート) with Heath on vocal and Yoshitsugu (Ash) on guitar.
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