Japanese band START OF THE DAY are all about exuding positive vibes and hopeful aspirations. Heavily influenced by the 90s emo scene (Sunny Day Real Estate, Saves The Day and the like) their sound straddles between ambitious post-rock moods and energetic emo rock hooks. Their live performances are aptly described as “watching an emotionally-driven cinema”, adding to the fact that the band wears matching attires on-stage. Making their live Singaporean debut in this year’s Baybeats Music Festival, we chat with the band about their origins, influences and tour experiences.
Konnichiwa START OF THE DAY! What's the story behind the band name and the folkish band attire?
Back in the day, we were heavily influenced by a lot of 90s emo bands. All the bands we looked up to had the word "day" in their names. One morning, there was an orange juice package with "Start of the day" written on it. All of us just kind of knew. It has a good meaning and it would make us really happy if you get up early and start your day by listening to our music. It wasn't as if we decided on the band name but more like we came across the name while wanting to make good music.
At first we always wore t-shirts and played with hardcore bands. But by looking at our concerts and pictures online, we decided on a certain image. So the attire we wear is a representation of what we're trying to communicate with our songs.
Your music is interesting – it has influences of post-rock and 90's emo. How would you describe your own sound to others who may not have heard your music before?
To say it in one line would have to be "Like a really listenable rock band." We tried to make our songs really simple so that even little kids can listen to it. But rock is the common language of the world.
What are your main musical influences?
It would especially have to the Swedish band Ariel Kill Him that has influenced us. Other influences include Sunny Day Real Estate, Mineral, etc. The so-called emo bands that came out in the 90s.
Tell us more about "A Story of Hope Tour 2012".
A Story of Hope Tour was a tour in Taiwan with our close friends, post-rock band Kanina. We here at START OF THE DAY have a strong conviction of "hope" that we also incorporate into our performances. Kanina is very narrative and delivers a story-like performance.
Also, Japan is in a very serious state after being affected by the earthquake and tsunami. We wanted to communicate to the world and also for the world to see, that we (Japan) are persevering through tragedy. Starting with our Taiwan tour, we want to deliver a story of hope to everyone. We performed at 2 live houses and at an outdoor music festival called Spring Scream. Japan received a lot of aid and support from Taiwan after the earthquake so it was also a way to express our gratitude. It was a really great tour.
What's the best and worst experience you've had while performing live?
I don't know if we've ever had a really bad live show experience but there have been times when there was trouble with equipment and monitors. So we've sang while not being able to hear ourselves at all. At the first place we performed, the sound of the guitar or vocals couldn't be heard from the outside speakers. But in our opinion though, we thought it was good show. A good live show is having fun with everyone that comes out to see us! We can't really say which one has been the best. There have great fans, live house staff, and managers at all the live houses we've played at so our shows have been a response to that collective effort and anticipation.
How are you preparing for the Baybeats gig?
We've been entering the studio, practicing, and making songs with everything we've got. Since we have an acoustic set at Baybeats, we've also been practicing playing acoustically.
What can we expect for your upcoming Baybeats gig?
We want to deliver an amazing live show to everyone. Plain and simple.
What are your plans after Baybeats?
After Baybeats we plan to continue "A Story of Hope" tour in Japan around August to September. After that, we’ll be releasing a new album and go on tour. I'm also thinking it would be nice to go to Singapore again. Lastly, please come watch us at Baybeats 2012!
Catch START OF THE DAY, Sunday, 1st July 2012
5.00 - 5.20 PM: Observation Deck (Library @ Esplanade)
10.15 - 10.45 PM: Arena (Outdoor Theatre)