Kazuyuki Kishino, also known under the moniker KK NULL and as founding member of Japanese Noise gods Zeni Geva, is one of the most respected living underground musicians in Japan.
Having released untold amounts of albums and worked with furious legions of artists he stands alone as being the godfather of Japanese noise music, still constantly producing and touring. After seeing his show at Revolver back in 2011 I sent him an mail to see if he was interested in answering a few questions. He gladly replied. And sent us pictures of his dog, Maru.
First of all, which part of Tokyo were you born in and where do you now live?
I was born in Katsushika ward in Tokyo and had been brought up there until my family moved to Zama city in Kanagawa prefecture when I was 7 years old, since then I've been residing in Zama most of time in my life.
What was it that first got you interested in music?
Sounds of nature, such as water, wind, heart beat, breathing.....
Is there a certain album that you remember hearing that made you want to create music yourself?
Wish You Were Here by Pink Floyd, I guess.
When you were starting out with Yb02 and ANP, how was the reaction from the press/public? Was it very localized to Tokyo or did you tour Japan/Asia?
At the time when YBO2 was playing actively, "alternative/independent music scene" was occurring in Japan, and YBO2 was one of the most innovative & important figures in the Tokyo scene.
Are you a firm believer in using analog equipment in your recordings or more of the school of thought that technology has created an equal with digital recordings (pro tools etc)?
Personally I'm not insistent on either analog or digital. I believe the most important things in creativity are unique idea, inspiration and do it on your own way. Tool is tool, whether analog or digital. Of course I admit we cannot do anything without technology, and I've been using both analog & digital equipment trying to get the most out of its advantages.
How has technology and laptops changed the way you approach music, both Live but also in your creation of music.
First of all, the best thing is it's handy & light! 20 years ago I had to carry 20kg of effect pedals and everything on tour, but now only laptop with a couple of kaoss-pads, mixer and so on, still nearly 10kg in total though. However, it's only 2 years ago I started to use computer softwares to create my music. The most amazing thing is you can do almost everything with only one small computer. Making sound, recording, editing, mixing, mastering and completing an album on CD, anytime, anywhere. But I'm still using other equipment too, such as hard disk recorder, synthesizers, analog effect pedals, and so on.
You have released over 100 records in your career so far, how do you find inspiration to make such a volume of music?
It's not enough yet at all. Anyway, it's very natural and spontaneous to me to be creative & productive, just I'm always open for inspiration and sense it, and just I want to create something interesting and inspires myself.
To what extent has jazz music influenced your career? Especially the more experimental sides of Miles Davis (Get up with it, On The Corner)?
Maybe I'm not a big fan of jazz music in general sense, however some particular albums by Miles Davis (Bitches Blew, On The Corner), and by John/Alice Coltrane (Infinity) are fantastic master pieces and give me much of inspiration.
Which of your collaborations with different artists have proved the most fulfilling to you personally?
Personally I'm quite happy with Raijin with Daniel Menche, and Extra Space, Extra Time with Z'EV, so far.
And, I've completed a collaborative recording with Julien Ottavi (The Noiser), and am working on another with Cris X, both will be amazing too.
Any plans to come back to Scandinavia in 2012 either as KK NULL or with Zeni Geva?
Actually, ZENI GEVA has been invited to play @ NØDUTGANG festival in Bodø on October 26 -27, 2012, where KK NULL played in 2007, and so I'm trying to book some other shows around. Look forward to meeting you then & there.
Here's links of MP3 to KK Null's recent works he shared with us, which includes this track:
KK NULL's latest live performance in Japan, Dec 2011.