FORBIDDEN // “To us “FORBIDDEN” is the name of the future we’re aiming for.”

FORBIDDEN is the newest musical project of guitarist 凛 (Lin, ex. brodiaea, Lilith, Affective Synergy, solo) and vocalist 鋲 (Byo, ex.SCREW, KHRYST+, solo). The duo launched their project in late December of 2023, but has already released three digital singles since: “FEARLESS”, “NIGHT RULER” and “MAD RED DAWN”.

The combination of 鋲 (Byo) and 凛 (Lin) stood out to me, since the sound of FORBIDDEN is quite different from the sound these members have been known for in the past, since 凛 (Lin) in particular is quite known for his heavy metal influence, none of which returns in FORBIDDEN. On the flipside, the influence from 鋲 (Byo) might sound a lot more familiar to fans of SCREW and KHRYST+, but this is to be expected from a vocalist, right?

FORBIDDEN creates their music based on the concept of “NIGHT TELLER” and “stories from Cyber City”. But what does this mean exactly? Their “dark” influence is palpable through their songs available so far sure, but with both members having a background in ヴィジュアル系 (Visual Kei), and them also presenting FORBIDDEN as a visual type of band, I’m quite curious to what more they have hidden in their concept so far. Each of their three available songs tells a story of it’s own, and is created with a different element of being a band and standing on stage during a live show in mind. Not to mention they’ve managed to bring this project from merely an idea to something tangible incredibly quickly…

Have I sparked your curiosity enough? I hope so!
Let’s go!


NIGHT TELLER: Stories from Cyber City

I’m sure there are some people who will recognize your names or photos, but let’s start at the very beginning. Could you please introduce yourselves first?
鋲 (Byo): This is 鋲 (Byo) from FORBIDDEN.
凛 (Lin): Nice to meet you! This is 凛 (Lin) from FORBIDDEN. In this band I am in charge of playing guitar and bass, recording, composing and arranging.

FORBIDDEN is still a relatively new project. You’ve only started activities in December of 2023 after all. You’ve described your concept as “NIGHT TELLER”, which means you’re illustrating various stories that take place in Cyber City. I’m curious, how did you get to this concept, since you both have a very different musical background with your previous bands?
鋲 (Byo): This theme is 凛 (Lin)’s idea. I myself have always expressed a dark view of the world and the darkness within my heart, so I feel comfortable using these words.
凛 (Lin): That’s right. A lot of things happened before this band was formed, and the timing of them all coincided. So I decided to team up with 鋲 (Byo).
One of the answers I’ve found in recent music production was to create sound like “CYBER LOUDNESS”. The most appropriate setting for this world is “Cyber City”. We will tell various stories that occur there as “STORY TELLER”. I mainly create music based on the night time frame, so I named it “NIGHT TELLER”.

I’m going to stay on this subject for this question too, since FORBIDDEN sounds familiar because of 鋲 (Byo)’s vocals, but for 凛 (Lin) it’s a sound we haven’t heard before. How did you decide on this type of sound? Did you consider something closer to your other works?
鋲 (Byo): I leave the sound aspect to 凛 (Lin). I think he’s good at manipulating me and my quirks.
凛 (Lin): Originally, I liked heavy metal sounds, and I liked to create songs that utilized intense riffs. However, it was clear that if I formed a band with 鋲 (Byo), it wasn’t going to be metal. So I was inspired to think that it would be interesting to create the aforementioned “CYBER LOUDNESS” while incorporating ヴィジュアル系 (Visual Kei) characteristics.
I have been in ヴィジュアル系 (Visual Kei) bands for a long time, so I have a strong love for ヴィジュアル系 (Visual Kei), and I think that I have a good understanding of what makes it unique.

I now understand how you’ve decided on the sound for this project, but you’re probably already guessing that I want to hear the story behind the name you chose too, aren’t you?
鋲 (Byo): When I met 凛 (Lin) and talked about the future direction and sound, the word “FORBIDDEN” came to me. Rather than calling it a project name or a band name, to us “FORBIDDEN” is the name of the future we’re aiming for.
凛 (Lin): I had a lot of trouble coming up with a name, but one day, out of the blue, 鋲 (Byo) came to me with this word. And I thought it was the right one! It was finally decided.


“Let’s be fearless.”

Next, I want to talk a bit about the music you’ve already released. Since you’ve released three singles in the last few months: “FEARLESS”, “NIGHT RULER” and “MAD RED DAWN”. Starting with “FEARLESS”. Why did you choose this song specifically as the first one to reveal?
鋲 (Byo): When I write lyrics I try to capture real-time emotions as much as possible. These lyrics were written before I started under the name 鋲 (Byo), and I wrote them to express the excitement of taking the first step towards the beginning of something, and the feeling of cracking the whip during the nightmare-like days.
It’s also a message to myself: let’s be fearless.
凛 (Lin): Before starting this band, 鋲 (Byo) had been performing as a solo artist for about a year. This was a song I had been playing since then, and the lyrics were very much like 鋲 (Byo)’s, and I felt his conviction.
It feels like I brought the sound closer to other songs in my own way, while merging with the passion present in the original. For me this is “song 0”, and thus it starts from point 0. I thought it was a song that summed up 鋲 (Byo)’s activities of the past year.

While “FEARLESS” has a special meaning to the both of you, you do take a different turn with “NIGHT RULER”. The emotion of this song sounds completely different…
鋲 (Byo): It’s a really cool song, isn’t it? I think this song is perfect for those of us who live in the darkness and disappear into the darkness. And in the midst of this repetition we seek light and shape the future.
凛 (Lin): I agree. This song was originally written by me, and 鋲 (Byo) really liked it, so we decided to release it. It’s also the beginning of a night story that symbolizes FORBIDDEN’s band concept. It’s an image of the Dark Knight running around Cyber City. It’s dark and gothic, but it’s a new, edgy sound that’s anything but old. That’s the theme of this song.
I also participated in writing the lyrics, but it was very difficult because the lyrics were all in English.

At the moment of writing this interview, “MAD RED DAWN” is the most recent song you’ve released together. And much like “NIGHT RULER” before it already did, this song also has a completely different emotion, doesn’t it?
鋲 (Byo): Although I only wanted to do songs that focused on a dark and sad worldview like “NIGHT RULER”, the place where the songs eventually go is the live stage. So the menu for this definitely needs to be catchy, and I thought I would be able to present it in a good way. It was however quite difficult to add the melody to the chorus this time.
凛 (Lin): This song really is the most recent song I made after starting a band with 鋲 (Byo). I was conscious of the same type of sound that continued from “NIGHT RULER”, and I designed this song to have a structure that gives it a more ヴィジュアル系 (Visual Kei) feel. During live shows we’ll be spinning towels, and I was very conscious of this from the very beginning when I was creating the rhythm and instrument phases.

It sounds like you’ve created these songs individually, each focusing on a different aspect as musicians. One being more personal, the other being more story-driven and the last one aiming more towards a live audience. The world of Cyber City is quite a unique one, isn’t it? Not only focusing on one topic, but also on the members themselves…
鋲 (Byo): We will continue to pursue and express the deep world that only these two people can create. Please take this opportunity to pay attention to us.
凛 (Lin): I agree. I’ve created a concept and finished each song one by one, so I’d be happy if people listened to the other songs as well when they’re released. There are also new songs that will be created as we perform live, so please look forward to that!

You’ve also played some live shows already. You know I’m not in Japan myself so I can’t just hop in and enjoy your performance, so I’d like to ask how you experienced these live shows yourselves. What did the audience think of FORBIDDEN?
鋲 (Byo): I feel like a rock star lol.
I’m glad that the songs are becoming more and more pervasive as we perform live, but the groove isn’t everything. So I think we need to clearly show the character of each song in order to make each of them even more appealing.
凛 (Lin): We are not a band that performs many live shows. We only perform once or twice a month. Maybe three times at most. There are months were there are no live shows at all too, so each live becomes even more important. I guess failure is not an option. That’s why I take it seriously every time!

Speaking of live shows, since the pandemic the popularity of livestreaming only increased. And as I just said in the previous question, I’m not in Japan either. I’m sure I’m not the only one who would like to see one of your live shows sometime. If the option were to present itself, would you be open to livestreaming as well?
鋲 (Byo): I would like to pass this question on to 凛 (Lin)…
凛 (Lin): I don’t have any objections to that, so if I have a change in the future I would definitely like to try it!


“The passion I put into each of my works is equally passionate, and as a creator I have a lot of love for them.”

Like I mentioned at the very start of the interview, I’m sure not all of our readers recognize you or your band. But I hope they became interested in seeing more of you through this interview. If they do, where can they find your works? Are you aiming to stay fully digital, or are you planning to release a CD in the future as well?
鋲 (Byo): I’m making plans for CDs and videos right now.
凛 (Lin): Currently, we have only released three digital singles, but of course we have plans for future releases already! A CD version is also planned. I think it will be released around summer.
雪 (Yuki): It seems that for now we have to enjoy FORBIDDEN’s releases as digital versions through streaming services for a little longer then, but I’m personally looking forward to the CD version already.

Following up the previous question with another fairly obvious one, what about the webshop?
鋲 (Byo): Come on!!
凛 (Lin): We started making merchandise at the same time the band started, since I wanted a sense of unity at the live performances. E-commerce sites are basically for domestic sales only, so if you’d like to use our webshop from overseas I’d recommend the services from!

You’ve already said that you’re planning some more songs for FORBIDDEN, but is there anything more on your agenda that you’re working towards and you can tell me about already?
鋲 (Byo): Our own entertainment.
雪 (Yuki): I don’t think I’ve ever had such an honest answer to this question before, but it’s more important than anything to have fun in your job, so I genuinely hope that you can hold on to that entertainment forever!
凛 (Lin): We just finished our first sponsored live show “FORBIDDEN CITY Vol.1” the other day, and the second one, “FORBIDDEN CITY Vol.2” will be held on August 30th. During that time we plan to release new music and perform overseas in fall. From there we will run through winter, and finish the year.

I understand that your main focus currently is on FORBIDDEN, but is there anything else on the program as well? Since 凛 (Lin), you also have a solo project as a guitarist for example?
鋲 (Byo): All I can think about is playing FORBIDDEN with 凛 (Lin).
凛 (Lin): FORBIDDEN’s schedule from formation to live was decided quite suddenly, and things moved much faster than I expected. There are songs I had been making and activities I was planning to do, but I would like to release them when the time is right. Personally, I’m thinking of taking a break from my solo project once I’ve released what I have planned.
FORBIDDEN’s activities will be more fulfilling, and the schedule will also increase! The passion I put into each of my works is equally passionate, and as a creator I have a lot of love for them. So I definitely want people to listen to all of them when they’re released!
雪 (Yuki): Again with the honest answers! As a creator (although a different “kind”) I can wholeheartedly agree with feeling the love for your work. I too hope every time that people will enjoy what I create next (like this interview for example)!

I’m getting closer and closer to the end of my list for today, so let me ask a more serious question: where can people stay updated on your whereabouts as FORBIDDEN?
鋲 (Byo): Please check each social. And please spread FORBIDDEN! We are connected.
凛 (Lin): Please check our personal socials, as well as the website of FORBIDDEN and the accounts on X, and Instagram. We will update information as soon as it becomes available.

Since this is becoming a bit of a staple in my recent interviews, I’m going to ask you this question as well. Is there anything you would like to ask the readers?
鋲 (Byo): What do you like about 鋲 (Byo) and 凛 (Lin)? lol
雪 (YukI): I can’t help myself, I want to answer this question too. I really like the combination of the both of you, since 凛 (Lin) creates some amazing sounds that match with 鋲 (Byo)’s voice really well, and 鋲 (Byo)’s personality makes a really entertaining frontman. 😉

Unfortunately this means we’ve arrived at my last question for this interview. You’ve probably already guessed what this is going to be, so… The stage is all yours…
鋲 (Byo): The important thing is that we have finally arrived here. I will spend the rest of my musical life with FORBIDDEN. I believe that we will meet again somewhere in the future.
凛 (Lin): Hello everyone in Europe (and everywhere else!), it’s FORBIDDEN!
Personally, I have never been to Europe for a live show, so I would be happy if I could go there in the future. I really like European cityscapes and I would like to experience the authentic gothic style.
If you ever come to Japan, please come and see our live show! We’ll be waiting!




🎂 02/09

🎂 12/26


雪 (Yuki) is the owner and driving force behind Arlequin.
She originally started the project in 2009 as a photographer under the name of Arlequin Photography, but developed an interest in journalism and translation ever since. Because of these interests interviews and reviews were added to the project, until it eventually hit the limits as a "photographer" in 2021, and Arlequin Magazine was added to the mix.

雪 (Yuki) is a native Dutch speaker with a graphic design degree, which means she is also the main person behind Arlequin Creations.
After all these years she is still the main person who does interviews the interviews and live photos that you see on Arlequin, but also a large chunk of the reviews and behind-the-scenes work and communication goes through her.

She speaks Dutch and English on a native level, but also understands Japanese and German.

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