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Why GuruConnect, the musician behind skillkills, can keep writing avant-garde songs



A circle of friends connected by goof-touch! The “FIST BUMP” corner of the radio program “GRAND MARQUEE” features a relay of people who live and enjoy Tokyo.

On April 25, musician GuruConnect was introduced by Yohei Takayama, Chairman of Okuribanto Co. We asked GuruConnect, a beatmaker, composer, bass player, and brain behind the one and only avant-hip-hop band skillkills, about the surprising story of how he became a bassist and formed skillkills, as well as the “Ondo” sake wari-mizu heated and music event. We asked him about the “Ondo” event, which is a sake wari-mizu-wan (heating sake with water) and music event.

Shocking first time to see a live performance. Throwing a super ball to the drums to make a sound.

Takano (MC): I think we should start with a fashion check of GuruConnect, don’t you? He is so fashionable today.

Celeina (MC): What kind of pattern is this?

GuruConnect: There were dozens of similar sweaters. The same kind as yesterday (laughs).

Celeina: Yesterday, Mr.Takayama’s fashion was colorful, and GuruConnect’s knitwear is also very colorful. It’s wonderful.

Takano: It looks like a collage of various carpets. The knitwear in the archive photo is similar.

GuruConnect: That’s right. I have a lot of them.

Takano: If you are interested, please check the photos.

Celeina: GuruConnect, I would like to ask you many questions, but first of all, how did you get started in music and why did you choose to play the bass guitar?

GuruConnect: As is often the case, I simply couldn’t play the guitar at all because of the pain in my fingers. I thought if I had four strings, I could do it.

Celeina: Bass guitar has thicker strings.

GuruConnect: But my friend told me that I could play only one of the four strings.

Takano: I see. I often have trouble holding down the F string.

GuruConnect: Exactly. That’s why I became a bass player.

Takano: First of all, you were active in your hometown, right?

GuruConnect: Until you graduated from high school.

Takano: At that time, you were in Yamaguchi Prefecture, right? What was the atmosphere like at the live houses?

GuruConnect: It was in Hofu City. It was like a live bar, where copy bands could play, and people from overseas would come. Avant-garde people used to come there. It was a place where avant-garde people used to come.

Takano: What kind of genre is it?

GuruConnect: At first, when I was in junior high school, I went to see an overseas artist because he was coming. There is a super ball, right? You know, the bouncy ones sold at street stalls? There was a live performance where they would throw a bunch of them at the drums, and sometimes they would make a sound when they hit the drums. I was wondering what it was.

Takano: Was that your first live experience?

GuruConnect: GuruConnect: Yes, it was. After that, a Korean saxophonist came and played the same sound for about two hours with circular breathing.

Takano: The same sound all the time?

GuruConnect: Yes, with a saxophone. I have no idea what was so good about it, but the impact was shocking.

Celeina: Interesting. After graduating from high school, you came to Tokyo. What kind of places did you absorb music in Tokyo?

GuruConnect: There were no subs at the time, so I went to rental shops and used record stores, and spent my part-time job money looking for music.

Takano: GuruConnect, you are the bassist of skillkills, and skillkills is really cool. They are very cool. They are dope and have a groove that transcends the framework of BPM. Is this bass guitar influenced by your experiences in Yamaguchi Prefecture?

GuruConnect: There may be a little bit of that. I didn’t have a lot of information, so I’m still working with that in mind. I think it is more interesting to do something different from others by not studying too much and including misunderstandings, or by trying hard but keeping the feeling of being a little off.

Takano: Without being bound by Western music theory.

GuruConnect: Nowadays, you can research anything. I am very conscious of not digging too deep so that I can do it naturally.

Celeina: So that’s where your originality comes from.

GuruConnect: Yes, that’s right.



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NiEW Best Music is a playlist featuring artists leading the music scene and offering alternative styles in our rapidly evolving society. Hailing from Tokyo, the NiEW editorial team proudly curates outstanding music that transcends size, genre, and nationality.