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Mr Children: Time Machine ni Notte (Ride the Time Machine)

August 21, 2008

Time Machine ni Notte (Ride the Time Machine)

      01.04.30
      Artist: Mr Children
      Title: Time Machine ni Notte (Ride the Time Machine)
      Words: Sakurai Kazutoshi
      Music: Sakurai Kazutoshi

      Even the rockstar that wears gaudy make-up
      in the passing of time will be a gentleman.
      If time washes away the pain,
      I want take a ride on a time machine and warp to the future.

      Dear Mr. Miyazawa Kenji
      In me reality and idealism are always in opposition to one
      another.
      “I won’t lose to the wind, I won’t lose to the rain”
      A kind and strong man without want
      Even though I aimed to be “like that”

      In a controlled classroom, we spread open our textbooks
      how we excessively love this averageness.
      with a little bit o’ money, copying the look of a star
      “monkey see monkey do”
      this is our generation

      how do you feel?
      come on and tell me
      what’s it like to be born to this world ?
      how do you feel?
      in a land of gluttony
      how does it feel to breathe elegantly

      Supposing you step outside the lines, Life is an adventure
      “the person who laughs last laughs best”
      dear Mr. Louie Armstong
      with all your heart and a hoarse voice
      sing “Wonderful World” for the next generation too.

      a girl selling her body was the basis for the word “love”
      wearing a brand name and throwing away pride
      when mass communication’s in an uproar they fawn over the youth,
      the constantly changing puppet of the age.

      How do you feel?
      c’mon answer me
      how does it feel that you’ll die on this earth
      How do you feel?
      I don’t need to be someone who just gets old in their steady
      life

      So we can jeer at all our crimes of agression, and the scars of
      losing the war,
      to keep up pace, we’re destroying our self worth
      woh woh whew, it’s just like tightrope dancing

      i wish you the best
      surely tomorrow will be clear out,
      wouldn’t it be nice if I could say what I was really thinking.

      How do you feel?
      C’mon tell me
      how does it feel to be born to this world?
      How do you feel?
      please don’t worry about this singer’s foolish complaining.
      How do you feel?
      c’mon tell me how it feels that you’ll die in this land?

      Translated By: Brian Stewart & Takako Sakuma

      Translator’s Notes: This song is clearly Sakurai’s criticism of modern
      Japan. Miyazawa Kenji is one of Japan’s most beloved poet/authors. His
      story “Ginga no Tetsudou” is a modern classic. The poem referred to in
      this song is called “Ame ni Makezu” (I won’t lose to the rain)… The
      images the poem brings up are of strength and self worth, but the reality
      of Sakurai’s world is quite the opposite and he can’t be that way. The
      next part of the song refers quite cynically to Japanese schooling of
      which every facet is controlled, and there is no room for self expression.
      The lines about “copying the look of the star”, either refer to students
      using their pocket money to get their haircut in the styles made popular
      by celebrities or buying clothes to look like a rock star… it’s a
      problem of identity. You should all know who Louie Armstrong is but if you
      don’t he’s a black singer from America who sings that “timeless classic”
      “Wonderful Life”, he has a very froggy hoarse voice… “I see trees of
      green…” is how the song begins. Trust me you’ve heard it. The part about
      “Mass Communication in an uproar”, refers to how the youth of a culture
      are bombarded with images and sales pitches… only while they are young,
      because the need for a consumer is constantly rotating turnstile so once
      you are no longer the target audience you’re no longer necessary to them.
      Crimes of Agression and “scars of losing the war” are both references to
      World War II. Japan’s crimes of agression were not simply against the US,
      but their Asian relatives as well, specifically China and Korea. I think
      the idea of identity is strong in the line “I wish I could say what I was
      really thinking”… because Japanese really don’t do that very often. I
      think Sakurai is really being cynical about the Japanese here. The “land”
      he’s talking about in the last few lines is Japan right?!

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