Hi Steve , I was wondering if you had any recollections of recording ” Blue of Noon “I love your playing on it.

Thank you. It was a ‘live’ recording between myself, Ryuichi Sakamoto and Wayne Braithwaite, a few takes but not so many. After we’d gotten our heads around the changes it was all about interpretation and interplay between the three of us. It was an enjoyable piece to perform. Never heard the intended song though as it only went to tape as an instrumental at that time.

Music production software offers endless potential for fine-tuning tracks (aka ‘tinkering’). I imagine your approach to be quite meticulous, so how do you avoid falling into that trap and deciding when a track is ‘finished’ ?

I do go to great lengths to feel that a piece is complete (enough) and I tend to live with multiple works in progress for quite a period of time in order to know they belong in my repertoire. I’ve many pieces that haven’t seen the light of day purely because they’ve not entirely met with that criteria. Sometimes it’s not easy to see the end point of a piece and tweaking minute details is something I would do rather obsessively. So the short answer is that I don’t avoid falling into that trap however I don’t see it so much as a trap, rather as a determination to seek the best result.

Hi Steve ! Today is the day Japan had a last concert in Nagoya! It was 34 years ago …..sob,sob… What is the most impressive memory when you were a member of Japan?

That date now passed but in response; probably the overnight leap from total obscurity to superstardom in Japan (the country) was one of the most memorable times simply because it was such an education and a great deal of fun. Despite popular belief at the time we had no preconceptions about our name attracting attention there but it gradually became apparent that our aesthetic suited the mindset of many Japanese teens and the name only seemed to help. Along with the appreciation came the realisation that Japan was truly an incredible place to visit and work. It’s almost as though the name chose us.

Then perhaps the success of our final studio album later followed by the multiple nights at Hammersmith Odeon (not sure how many … 6?) it felt as though the band had arrived at its zenith, finally breaking the barriers that the UK press had put up around us over previous years with such acerbic zeal. That sense of accomplishment provided the courage to move on without looking back.