Translation

exist†trace – Ambivalence

Happy April Igu Day! Well, I’ll probably go ahead and post this on the 18th. We can celebrate a little early. LOL

Anyway, with this song in particular, I think it helps to keep the title in mind. The lyrics are contradictory, but they’re supposed to be.

Lyrics in Japanese can be found here on Rock Lyric.

Ambivalence

fuonna ame ni nureta shinkirou wa
yasahiku nikumiatta futari no kage

I can see my eyes shut slowly tsuki no nai yo ni
I can tell your voice never back again kieta futari

kanbina netsu ni toketa shinkirou wa
mukishitsu ni aishiatta futari no kage

I can see my eyes shut slowly doko made nigetara
I can tell your voice never back again jama sarenai

kizutsukerareta mune no itami wa ikiru imi ni kawari
anata ga soba ni iru sore dake de mada arukeru

mujun no kaze ni kizuku shinkirou wa
kodoku ni dakareshitta futari no kage

I can see my eyes shut slowly tsuki no nai yo ni
I can tell your voice never back again kieta futari

kizutsukerareta mune no itami wa ikiru imi ni kawari
nando mo shinjita uso sae mada mabushii

I can see my eyes shut slowly doko made nigetara
I can tell your voice never back again jama sarenai

kizutsukerareta mune no itami wa ikiru imi ni kawari
anata ga soba ni iru sore dake de mada arukeru
mou dare ni mo tomerarenai ketsui no okusoko ni nemuru
risou wo nando demo chikau yo anata no tame

Ambivalence

The mirage drenched in an unsettling rain
Is the shadow of two people who gently hated each other

I can see my eyes shut slowly
On a moonless night
I can tell your voice will never return
The two disappeared

The mirage that melted into the sweet fever
Is the shadow of two lovers who were going through the motions1

I can see my eyes shut slowly
How far do I have to run
I can tell your voice will never return
To not be disturbed?

The pain in my heart from being hurt turns into my reason for living
All I need to be able to move forward is to have you at my side

The mirage noticing all the contradictions
Is the shadow of two people who found themselves trapped in loneliness2

I can see my eyes shut slowly
On a moonless night
I can tell your voice will never return
The two disappeared

The pain in my heart from being hurt turns into my reason for living
Even the lies I believed over and over again still blind me

I can see my eyes shut slowly
How far do I have to run
I can tell your voice will never return
To not be disturbed?

The pain in my heart from being hurt turns into my reason for living
All I need to be able to move forward is to have you at my side
I lie in the depths of a resolve that can’t be stopped now
I’ll make a vow to my ideals as many times as necessary
For your sake


1. 無機質 (mukishitsu) describes mineral matter. Most of the time, you can translate it to “inorganic.” By extension, you can translate it to “robotic,” and at least one dictionary (Jim Breen’s) does indeed include this translation. In the context of this song, “robotic” sounds awkward and “inorganic” doesn’t even make sense. But think about it: what are to people who are “loving each other robotically” doing?

The answer: they’re going through the motions.

2. It can be tempting to translate 孤独に抱かれ知った (kodoku ni dakareshitta) as “knew they were enveloped in loneliness.” And that interpretation could make sense in the context of the song: the lovers being together only because they’re lonely, not because they actually love each other, would be an example of ambivalence. But to have the meaning of “know” as in “some information is existing in your mind” the verb 知る must be in ている form. In contrast, used as the regular past form 知った this verb means “find out, realize, or discover.” So this line is about the two realizing that they’re lonely despite their relationship. Ouch.

“Enveloped” isn’t wrong here, but I think “trapped” sounds more natural in this context.

4 thoughts on “exist†trace – Ambivalence

  1. Nicely done! And definitely “ouch.” I sincerely hope that Miko-san was watching this happen at a distance and not experiencing it. Although, being a gifted composer and Rockstar doesn’t make someone immune to relationship strife – it just gives them a boss-level process to assist with the emotional exorcism. Examples: pretty much any Blues song in history and the entire Barenaked Ladies catalog. 😉

    • Yeah, I was kinda wondering about that too. It feels vague enough to be about any similar situation rather than a specific one, but you never know. I think most artists give themselves away at least a little bit with everything they do, but an outside viewer won’t necessarily be able to pick up on those things if they don’t personally know the artist.

      Aha, the first Barenaked Ladies song that popped into my mind was “One Week.” I guess that is also a bit of an ambivalent relationship, but the tonal contrast with this one is pretty funny XD

      • One of my favorite quotes about writing, but it works for most art: “There is nothing to writing. All you do is sit down at a typewriter and bleed.” – Hemingway
        And that was exactly the BNL song I had in mind. 🙂

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