J-Pop Sensations Travis Japan Talk Sophomore Single 'Moving Pieces' and Growing as Artists

Japanese idol group Travis Japan first captured our hearts when they auditioned for America's Got Talent last year, and with each new release, they're only getting more powerful as artists.

Earlier this week, they released their vibrant second single, "Moving Pieces," complete with its own cool music video. The bass-heavy track shows off the group's unique approach to dance-pop, and together with the video's slick choreography, "Moving Pieces" really allows the individual talents of each member to shine while also demonstrating how beautifully they work together. The follow-up to JUST DANCE!" was written and produced by the acclaimed producer Poo Bear, who oversaw the recording in Miami. Travis Japan is also slated to drop an EP, also titled Moving Pieces, on June 5, and we got the chance to catch up with the group to learn more about their growth and why "Moving Pieces" is so significant to them.

Sweety High: Tell us some of the stories behind "Moving Pieces"! Any fun moments from the creative process?

Machu: Recording the music video was really exciting.

Shizu: The first time we recorded it was out of the booth with Poo Bear.

Umi: We went to Miami, but we couldn't go to the World Baseball Classic.

G: We wanted to watch baseball, and even managed to get tickets—but were unable to go.

Noel: We were delayed in transit and we couldn't get the flight and stayed overnight in Chicago, so we missed the baseball game.


SH: What does the song mean to you, and what do you hope it will mean to your listeners?

Machu: "Moving Pieces" is different from "JUST DANCE!" It's got a cooler and more energetic mood. It's different music.

Chaka: In short, it means "follow our feet, they call us Travis Japan." That's how I feel about it. Follow our feet, and we can show you a new way to see things.

G: It re-introduces Travis Japan to the fans and strengthens our relationship.

Travis Japan group shot exclusive for Sweety High

(Image courtesy of Johnny & Associates)


SH: What are your favorite lyrics from the song? Why?

G: What do you think, Chaka? Maybe "NANANA?"

Machu: "They call us Travis Japan." Ending the song with our song group name, Travis Japan, is so cool for us. Easy to understand whose song this is, and who sings it.

Noel: One of the lyrics includes Travis Japan. It's meaningful. It's easy to recognize who sings it—"Oh, it's Travis Japan"—and that little extra part makes us so grateful and thankful to have this song for everyone to enjoy after so long as trainees.

Shizu: I think that "Moving Pieces" represents us and fans are included, so the lyrics are wonderful.


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SH: How does the new song highlight all of your individual strengths as artists?

Chaka: Hairstyle! Our new photos are very different than ever before.

G: Worldview. I think it's like the view of the song Ed Sheeran and Justin collaborated on, "I Don't Care." It's got great CG and is really cool.

Noel: Our personalities were included in this song when we recorded it. We practiced, but there's a point in Umi's part where "catch my vibe" is a different melody from the demo. That's our individual highlight. We created it together with Poo Bear, and that makes it the only one of its kind in the world.

Chaka: We could do expressions with individual colors of our singing voices on the new song.

Travis Japan Moving pieces single art

('Moving Pieces' via Johnny & Associates)


SH: Is there a lot of pressure around following up your debut single? How do you feel that "Moving Pieces" shows your growth since "JUST DANCE!"?

Shizu: "JUST DANCE!" was a kind of powerful song, but "Moving Pieces" is a kind of chill. It's a completely different and opposite style of melody and lyrics. We can be adults and be sexy.

Shime: "Moving Pieces"' dance has more synchronized dancing than "JUST DANCE!"

Machu: I was nervous. "JUST DANCE!" was a really energetic and powerful song, so we wanted "Moving Pieces" to become something different. But I hope it's still going to become as popular as "JUST DANCE!"

G: I think we want to grow more in dancing and singing and show you a more grown-up appearance.


Also read about: Travis Japan Shares Their America's Got Talent Journey and So Much More


SH: What was it like to bring the music video to life? What were your favorite moments from the shoot?

Machu: From the top to the first chorus, it's like a one-take camera shot. It's really cool.

Noel: We couldn't afford to make a mistake, or we'd have to start from the very beginning!

Machu: Yeah, we had to have concentration and confidence.

Shizu: I like the scene with us under the seven spotlights. It was cool.

Chaka: We didn't know the idea or concept about the MV until we showed up on set. We couldn't imagine what it would look like once finished. But now that it's complete, we are excited to watch it!

Noel: Two days ago, we watched it, and it was completely different from our imagination. The director was awesome. So cool.

Travis Japan Moving Pieces group shot

(Photo credit: Keisuke Nakashima)


SH: Is there anything else we should know about "Moving Pieces"?

Umi: I hope it brings you feelings of happiness! Please be excited for it! If you listen to "Moving Pieces," please, share our song on other SNS. Let us know what you think, and we will be waiting!

Noel: Rewind and play again.

Chaka: Don't think about it—just watch and have fun!


Want to learn all about the band? HERE is everything we discovered about them as our Man Crush Mondays.