Daisuke Ono (Voice Animage Vol. 46 2020)

小野 大輔

If you look up, you will think about the twinkling stars in space, and Daisuke Ono will finally advance into space! The space-themed mini-album “STARGAZER” has become a positive work that breaks through the sense of stagnation that surrounds Japan today. What does Ono-san think is the meaning of making music now?

Ono: Space was the perfect motif to express my current state of mind.

The new work “STARGAZER” is a mini album that collects songs with the motif of space. I felt that Ono-san and the universe are a perfect match. Ono: I have many songs with star motifs, such as “Manatsu no Spica” and “Orion no Yoru.” I think it was also for everyone. Furthermore, I made “Dramatic” as the theme song for “Theatrical version Ultraman Taiga New Gene Climax”, and since it’s a mini album that goes beyond that, I wanted to create a space motif. As a result, although it is a mini album, it is finished in a large-scale work.

There are 5 new songs, the singles “Dramatic” and “Deep & Holic”, and a total of 9 monologue and instrumental tracks. Ono: A monologue and an instrumental form the introductory part of the album. It’s an image of the state of mind an astronaut who is still on the ground and thinking about a space trip.

So, it’s an introductory part with a story. Ono: Yes. It was an introductory part in which I likened to an astronaut when I had just started working as a voice actor. Daisuke Ono, who was nothing, became a voice actor and started to sing. The universe continued to expand even now, and the end is unknown… I don’t know where my voice acting and music activities will go from here on out, and that’s why I’m so excited. Express your current state of mind, I think that the motif of the universe was the most suitable for it.

The teaser MV for the lead song “Rocket Man” has already been released online, and you can listen to part of it. Ono: It is the opening song that jumped out to space, and is the core song of “STARGAZER”, and it has become a fastball rock.

The lyrics are written by Ono-san. What kind of things were you thinking about when you wrote it? Ono: Around the time we finally started working on “STARGAZER”, the spread of the new coronavirus infection became more serious. I was really worried about whether I could make it at this time, or whether I was doing music activities in the first place. At that time, I suddenly remembered the song “DELIGHT” that I made after the Great East Japan Earthquake. The darker the society, the more I wanted to create a bright, fun, and positive work. Based on my thoughts at that time, I wanted to make the song I’m delivering to you all positive as well.

It’s a song that jumps out into space, and it’s a song full of hope and brightness. Ono: When people think of the universe, they always look up at the sky. The fact that no one looks down and thinks about the universe means that we only have a positive image of the universe. The album title “STARGAZER” was also born from such thoughts.

“Rocket Man” is also a power word. Ono: When I was writing the lyrics, it was a word that suddenly came down strangely. I really like the stupid positive feeling. Anyway, I feel like I’m flying recklessly. Even though it’s a period of self-restraint, I’m trying to do what I can do right now without being gloomy at home. I was able to move forward with this song.

What is your impression of the melody and sound of “Rocket Man”? Ono: I realized for the first time that I hadn’t sung a rock number that felt like it penetrated so far. I thought I had sung in various genres, but I felt like I was able to return to my roots in an unexpected blind spot. To tell the truth, this is the first time for me to sing an MV with the band.

It’s true that many of Ono-san’s MV’s are dance-centric or short film-like. Ono: If I were to shoot the band scene, I thought I’d have Takuya Watanabe-san, who I’ve been indebted to for a long time, play the guitar, so I made an offer. It’s the first time I’ve sung with Watanabe-san’s guitar since the first episode of “Ore Para”. I was moved just by being able to perform with him.

The spaceship passage scene in the MV was also impressive. Oh, the original story is “2001: A Space Odyssey.” Ono: Yes, I borrowed the image. That’s also the royal road (laughs). It was a midsummer shoot, so the space suit I was wearing was very hot.

Please tell us about the other new songs that “Banyuu Gravity” and “Phoenix” are the subject matter of the new songs. “UNIVERSAL GRAVITY” is a song with a truly cosmic sound. Ono: The codename for this song is “Pico Piko 80’s.” I think that the universe that everyone envisioned in the 80s was catchy and pop. On the other hand, the 80’s typed music is cute and fashionable. This song was created by incorporating the retro-futuristic elements of the 80’s into modern music.

In terms of sound, it doesn’t have a crips 8-bit feel, and it’s stylish. Ono: The sound is modern, but the melody is somehow nostalgic. I was happy to feel the nuances of Toshinobu Kubot’s “Meteor Saddle”, which I have loved for a long time. It is a number with a sense of speed that is ideal for driving.

There are many English parts in the lyrics. Ono: That’s good. It reminds me of those days when I thought Western music was cool for no reason (laughs).

The title doesn’t appear in the lyrics. Ono: After receiving the lyrics, I added the title. I came up with the word “Universal Gravitation” with the image of a heart attracted to each other, and when I looked up how to say it in English, it was “Universal Gravity”. Cool! Let’s go with this! You can interpret it as a love song, or as a song that depicts the moment when people meet and are attracted to each other.

The third new song “Firebird” is a dance song. Ono: It is a cutting-edge K-Pop dance number that you can dance to. When I wanted a song like this, I took a certain song as an example and ordered it, and a very similar melody came out (laughs). However, it was interesting that the arrangement gave a completely different impression. I once again realized the importance of the role of the arrangement. It has a modern sound, and it has a finish that fits well as a song sung by Daisuke Ono.

What is your impression of the lyrics? Ono: The word “Firebird” was included in the demo from the stage, and it gave us an overall picture of the lyrics for this song. The image of the phoenix as it rushes through outer space has a very positive image. I felt that it was a theme that I wanted to sing now. A strong desire to not give up on entertainment.

Two more new songs will be recorded from now on. Ono: That’s right. One is a song made by Takuya Watanabe, based on David Bowie’s “Space Oddity”. The lyric “te perma” is to connect hope to the future by looking back on the past. Putting it on a simple guitar sound, it is a content that speaks from the present self to the past self.

What about the other song? Ono: It is a party song full of euphoria. “STARGAZER” has a collection of songs with a strong message, but I wanted at least one song that would clear your head and get you excited. On the live stage, I want to make a song that reminds me of the band and dancers playing around. It’s like a touchstone for the next live, and if you have this song, I think your awareness of the next live will naturally increase.

What will the lyrics about? Ono: The lyrics don’t come from just making a fuss. He wrote with the theme of “If there is music, even aliens can understand each other.” I thought about it later, but that theme was something Susumu Kodau said in “Space Battleship Yamato 2199.” The work of a voice actor and music production are linked without being conscious of it, and I thought it was like me.

In addition, existing songs will be included. Ono: “Deep & Holic” is a song about alcohol, but it’s actually a song about moonlight. The moon appears in the lyric’s “show”. It was the lead single, but I was surprised at how well it followed the “STARGAZER” concept. And “Dramatic” is a song that everyone sings in chorus and welcomes the big circle. “STARGAZER” is also the beginning of this mini album production, and it is a song like the universe itself that can contain all positive messages.

As for the jacket, the illustration jacket limited edition has good taste. Ono: That was a sub-proposal that the designer suggested himself, but it was so good that I asked the staff to adopt it. It’s a D-shaped spaceship, and if you look closely, you’ll find me in the living space.

Ah, there’s definitely a figure (laughs). Ono: And the central aisle is called the MV aisle. Linked well with the MV.

I really like the retro-future feel of the old plastic model box art. Lastly, please tell us what you think about your future music activities. Ono: I think it will be over by the time this interview is published, but the host and staff had serious discussions repeatedly about the live distribution of “Ore Sama” without an audience. The feeling that everyone had in common was that they would not give up on entertainment, and that they wanted to somehow deliver their songs to the audience. For the time being, we will have no choice but to change the for of live performances. In that case, I think it is important to find out how to create something new that has never existed before. Regarding my music activities and “Ore Para”, I would like to continue running with the simple feeling of “I will not give up on entertainment.”


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