GACKT, who celebrates the 15th anniversary of his solo debut, has released the remix album 『GACKTRACKS-ULTRA DJ ReMIX-』. Today, in ORICON STYLE’s interview with GACKT, we spoke about his beliefs and way of life as a musician who sticks to his own style, and his opinion of the rock genre. We also revisited the recent hot topic of the discrimination incident in Paris.

◆Because of this personality, starting from around me, the viruses and foreign matter will be dealt with

――Amongst the 14 people involved in this remix, there were high profile members like DJ KOO-san, Marc Panther-san, ROCKETMAN and Fukawaryo-san amongst others. Were you acquainted with them before this?
【GACKT】 That is a common misunderstanding but, I’ve never met with them before. The only person I was acquainted with was Marc, if we met it’s more like 「It’s been awhile, how’re you?」, but just with that you can’t say that we’re really close. That’s why, because this isn’t an album that came about due to connections, I’m on the contrary happy that they were willing to take it on, and I was also pretty surprised with the final product. Even for my lives, in other words, I don’t have any connections because I’ve never had a DJ do arrangements for me, I would even go as far as to say that in the first place I have few musician friends.

――Because you don’t want to talk about music?
【GACKT】 Yeah, it’s not interesting, if you talk about things related to music. Because everyone has their own opinion, I don’t want to have drinks while talking about what’s correct or wrong. If that happens, you’ll definitely refute each other, and your conclusions will clash right? Especially once you start talking about music theory, since I did that before when I was younger, when you say 「that’s not right」, the places where the other person is wrong becomes distinct. Furthermore, refuting each other won’t make you grow closer. Frankly, if you guys are people who can come to a mutual conclusion, then there isn’t any need for such a conversation in the first place. Rather it’s the people who can’t sell their opinion who are earnest about such conversations. Saying things like 「“Music” is ……」. Then, guys like that will say 「Isn’t that right, GACKT-san! 」, and I have no choice but to say 「Hm… That’s nice, if that’s how you like it」 (laughs). When that happens the speaker’s position will get demolished. Also, the music industry is a vertical world but, because of my character I do things with absurdity so… … I guess you can say starting from around me, the viruses and foreign matter will be dealt with……(laughs).

――No way, no way, rather it’s that people around you will get humbled?
【GACKT】 No~, aren’t there quite a number of people who think that I’m a difficult person? Since everyone knows I’m stoic. Furthermore, right now I’m more mellow but because in the past I was quite short tempered, so because there’s the risk of that, most wouldn’t think of wanting to get close (laughs). That’s why, character-wise, those who I get along with are politicians or martial artists, since long ago there were also many who were in the IT industry or businessmen. That’s why, often there are younger kids who ask me things like 「what’s your job? 」. Although the genre is completely different (laughs).

◆If I don’t live with rock, I can’t live as “GACKT” (laughs)

――With GACKT-san’s way of carrying yourself, even people who are not fans will know that you’re someone to be reckoned with right. Like when you mentioned in a previous blog post about the discrimination problem you experienced in a Parisian cafe. Around the world you’ve been asked for comments but, what do you think of that “advisory” position?
【GACKT】 For me, I’m not concerned about how the world’s current trends perceive which is right and which is wrong. I live by my own standards, and even if the people 50 or a 100 years later look back and find it interesting that someone like me has been around, I’m okay with that. I, myself, don’t think that my actions were wrong. Just that it can’t be said that I’m 100% correct either.

――So you mean on one hand “not wrong = a belief” but “correct = valuing diversity”?
【GACKT】 Right. To me, it’s like I just have a steadfast belief that I wasn’t wrong. I don’t think that we have to live in accordance will all the values of a diverse world. In actuality, I’m living with my own motives. So, honestly, there are times where I feel that it’s hard to grow. Because I’m also an easy target for the media to attack, there are still guys who just attack right? But, I’m good. However, if I really did something that is wrong, I would have disappeared right? (laughs). Besides, if a musician cannot express his way of life, what kind of musician is that. If you bend over and live your life hiding just stop being a musician, because that’s not what rock is about. That, perhaps, is an old part of me, if you ask me 「what is rock?」, won’t I be able to say「I am what rock is」?

――I see, it’s the result of you expressing your way of life by sticking to your own beliefs as a musician.
【GACKT】 Because if I don’t live with rock, I can’t live as “GACKT” (laughs). Because I’m thinking of entering the eyes of the world more from here on, I’m not living in Japan now. However, by doing this, looking at Japan from the outside, I know very well that the “national isolation climate” still continues on today which makes it lag behind. And, I also know that because of that Japan has missed out on many chances along the way. Since that’s the case, I decided to start with myself working in the world as a Japanese, so now, I’ve left Japan. However, this is definitely not an easy road. If I quietly remained in Japan I wouldn’t get attacked, and it wouldn’t cost money either. But I will boldly choose the difficult path. That’s my way of life.

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Translation: GACKT ITALIA Team