ドラマティック膝栗毛 || A Dramatic Journey by Shank’s Mare

doramatikku hizakurige
A Dramatic Journey by Shank’s Mare

Vocals: あやぽんず* (Ayaponzu*)
Lyrics: kaztora
Arranged by: kaztora
Album: Synchro 2 (シンクロ2) 【Official Site】
Circle: Shinra-Bansho (森羅万象)
Event: Reitaisai 15 [RTS15]
Original Theme: Hiroshige No.36 ~ Neo Super-Express [ヒロシゲ36号 ~ Neo Super-Express]

Requested by: Siti


Translating the title was a little frustrating since the phrase “Shank’s Mare” means absolutely nothing to me. However, the title is a specific reference to a famous Japanese book, 東海道中膝栗毛 (shortened to Hizakurige), and that’s been translated as Shank’s Mare so I used that term to preserve the literary reference.

There are some articles out there that reference the book and its translation if you’d like to know more.

Incidentally, Shinra-Bansho seems to have dropped the capitalised R from their official branding, so I might drop it too. I really want to translate more Shinra-Bansho stuff…

The super express leaves dreams behind as its tracks.

Now, I will check everybody’s tickets.
This is the century’s greatest invention.
As long as I’m with you
there aren’t any walls in our way.

The journey is on schedule and going well.
Afterimages of the panoramic view are projected.
I will dive in
to the super-vivid blue sea.
The steam train runs with alternate dreams on board.
I wonder whose dreams they are?
‘Something certain’ advances toward the future.

I always find myself suddenly thinking
that life is like a train.
Immortality, so to speak, is an illusion—
we will arrive at the terminal station eventually.

Splitting Tokaido,
this madness continues. It stretches out forever, far into the distance.
“Ah, virtual princess
even your awareness is a fraud.”
I’m all dizzy now!

The train continues. With a bump and a crash, it carries dreams.
The boundary line blurs, playing a lovely discord.
“Mad illusion,” run, run!
There are 53 revolving mirage lanterns.

Twinkle, twinkle. A parabola was sketched out in binary.
It was so beautiful I sighed.
You said some words back then. When was it…?
Now, I’m not sure
if they were real.

One day, the steam train
went and leaped over all the lodgings.
It drew closer to the dream’s end.
Please, wait a bit.
It’s too fast for the credits to roll!
I haven’t shown you something dramatic yet!

Even so, the steam train runs along the tracks.
Our journey by Shank’s Mare through the modern world
was over too soon, to my surprise. Like that, everything will end.
“Still, surely”
The journey the two of us took
“will continue forever.”
It won’t end.
There’s still more to come.

There’s an announcement: we’re at the station.
Make sure to leave nothing behind.
Perhaps this warmth is the only real thing.

太陽のうた || The Sun’s Song

taiyou no uta
The Sun’s Song

Vocals: あよ (Ayo)
Lyrics: kaztora
Arranged by: kaztora
Album: Synchro 2 (シンクロ2) 【Official Site】
Circle: ShinRa-Bansho (森羅万象)
Event: Reitaisai 15 [RTS15]
Original Theme: Solar Sect of Mystic Wisdom ~ Nuclear Fusion [霊知の太陽信仰 ~ Nuclear Fusion]

Requested by: seaandhisramen

This track seems to play around with Utsuho’s name (空), which also means ‘Sky’ and ‘Empty’. I wonder if this track is related to aurora…?

Woh oh… Now, face the sky!
My love! I will fly far into the distance.
Hah. Ah… I bask in the morning sun
Though everything now returns to ashes. Oh…

In the distant past, the endless sky seemed so free, blue, and clear.
The white raven raced through a dream.
It yearned after the brilliant sun.

The raven wasn’t scared of anything
and it felt like it could go anywhere.
It told a small lie
and was stained black.

Woh oh. So, I face the sky
and my love stretches far into the distance.
The midday sun shines
though my voice now burns. Oh…

I’m not loved by anyone.
Nobody understands me.
After all, my voice and figure are so hideous.
“Even if you hate the world,
Nobody is beyond redemption.”
Yes—the two of us were so alike.

I want to be your light.
What is more important than anything else?
Warmth pierces my heart.
If I can still flap my wings,
I’ll head towards the sky!

Wo oh. Now, the three-legged crow
cries, and faces the sky.
Hah. The setting sun shines through.
That’s right—even if my body will be burned up by the sun…

Though everything is empty, the sky is there.
I felt like I understood the name you gave me back then.
The rays become a beam of gentle light
so they will illuminate you.

I spread my wings
and, yes! After pushing through the frozen star,
I’ll reach out my hands
toward my mother sun.

Woh oh. The three-legged sun
flew high into the heavens.
I raised my voice!
I may have forgotten
what I wanted all along,
But I’ll shine conspicuously. Ah…

Na na na…

無意識レクイエム || Unconscious Requiem

muishiki rekuiemu
Unconscious Requiem

Vocals: あよ (Ayo)
Lyrics: ticat
Arranged by: kaztora
Album: Synchro 2 (シンクロ2) 【Official Site】
Circle: ShinRa-Bansho (森羅万象)
Event: Reitaisai 15 [RTS15]
Original Theme: Hartmann’s Youkai Girl [ハルトマンの妖怪少女]


This track is so deep. Like always (?) the parts in brackets should be interpreted as their own separate sentence, though there are some parts that actually fit quite neatly into what comes before. One part also swaps from kanji to hiragana – I accounted for it by changing capitalisation and punctuation.

ticat had this to day about the track on Twitter: “Hello…? Ah, can you hear me? Oh, who am I? I’m Koishi! Ko-i-shi! You don’t know me? You liar! I’ve been watching you the whole time since that day, from behind. You didn’t think it ended back then, did you? Hey, don’t hang up! …Well, hanging up won’t do you any good anyway, you know…”

It’s 2 AM. The mercury lamp flickers
and at a gloomy intersection
a voice can be heard coming from behind…

Somebody was boasting [There’s nobody there,]
and according [But who spoke?]
to the rumour they told, [Your dreams can come true…]
They were standing there quietly.

An inorganic pushing sound echoes softly.
You can’t turn back after. Does heaven or hell wait at the end of the line?

“Good evening. Um… have you heard?”

Look, look, somebody’s looking.
They’re peeping at you from close by!
I send down traumatic rain, drip drop.
I’m only going to boil one bird today. Hah.

“How do you do? Good evening. Is it raining where you are?”

I was playing hide and seek. Fooling around.

“I’m close by. I’m coming to see you…”

Right next to you…
Yes. Somebody created [There’s nobody there,]
a rumour [But who spoke?]
and according to it, [Meet them and you can’t go home…]
They’ll sneer from behind you. Who are they?

[Listen closer to this requiem. Does it exist? This is the border beyond the telephone receiver…]
It’s nowhere, but it’s over there:
It’s a hallucinatory world. (1)

“Have you noticed me?”

I hear the clattering sound of a knob turning,
A secret at 2 AM, in the dead of night.
I can’t even see shadows, and footsteps resound.
Two birds can’t come here. They cry.

Even if they see my smashed face,
Everyone will stand in a row.
Being cleaved from the head down,
They crawl along the red lights.
From here, to here,
I won’t let you travel that lost road somewhere.
Thus spoke the heavenly god.
My path back has come unstuck, but
I’m fine, I’m fine, I’m fine, I’m fine.

I tear things to pieces and mix you and you in.
Red… red… how pointless.
alone in the world. you, i, and dreams…
it’ll finally end. it hurts it hurts it hurts

Still, when I was born
my heart was already wounded.
All I did was hurt someone else.
Will the innocent suffer such a fate?
Well, if you don’t know
then tremble and fall asleep!

“Hey, right now, I’m right by you—”

Ah, bodies and souls are in pieces.
Those lives won’t go back to how they were.
How long will you dream?
Unfair, fair—it’s all relative.
What if I’m Mary?
It’s an unbelievable truth.
Please, don’t arbitrarily settle on a bad ending!
Today, only one bird will fade away again.
Today, I’ll offer up my sweet sacrifice again.

(1) 言死 (genshi) is written in brackets next to 幻視 (genshi). The line can also be read as “It’s the world where words die.”

MY Heart Rate

synchro2MY Heart Rate

Vocals: あよ (Ayo)
Lyrics: Caral
Arranged by: kaztora
Album: Synchro 2 (シンクロ2) 【Official Site】
Circle: ShinRa-Bansho (森羅万象)
Event: Reitaisai 15 [RTS15]
Original Theme: Spring Lane ~ Colorful Path [春色小径 ~ Colorful Path]

Requested by: hs08


A new lyricist has joined the Shinra-Bansho flock! If I had to compare Caral to another lyricist, I’d compare them to Seiji. Like Seiji, they mix English seamlessly with the Japanese lyrics. It’s really effective – I didn’t even have to do much work to make it fit.

I think this is a Yukari x Reimu song, but it’s tough working out who’s speaking where. This line in particular is tricky: 攫って幻の世界から (Abducted from a world of illusions). The speaker could be the one doing the abducting, or they could be the one being abducted. As my interpretation of the lyrics evolves, I may change some of these things around.

(Heart rate,
Ideals and reality create gaps and they close in.
My heart and reality stifle tenderness.
No limits. Even if that’s true,
I can’t shout or spit out
that small, reverberating message)
Only in my heart.

Though I act tough,
I can’t leap over this discontent.
I say something or other
and the same kind of morning arrives.

I imagined freedom back then
but where is it?
I forget my ideals in my dream.

Hey, only my heart’s voice
is an acupuncture marionette. Ah, ah.
I can’t even keep up anymore. Everybody!
Everyone sword fights with the attention-seekers. Run.
I knew that I was being sought out
but still, it was my good day.
Hey, why is it? Hey, why is it?
I want to gain one silent day. Ah…

Abducted from a world of illusions,
It was like I had been swallowed up.
Can’t get over there. Yeah…
I dig it up and it’s twisted. You got it.
We become tangled up.
Ah… I can’t disobey. I’m lame.

You gang up on me. Eh, eh.
You call me a contrarian. Eh, eh.
You tell me to donate if I’m going to say this and that.
You keep saying the same things. Eh, eh.
How boring. Don’t let me down.
(Don’t know nothing, don’t let me down.)

Oh… no matter how far I go, I don’t understand.
As for those unreasonable demands, ah, ah…
Aren’t they fine because they’re so explosive?
(Aren’t they fine?)
Ah. No matter how long I’ve done it, I’m going to leave.
After all giving up and accepting things is so important.
Hey, why is it? Hey, why is it?
In the end, I’ll manage somehow.
(So lonely, lonely day.)

But if you’re by my side…
I’ll abduct you from a repeated world.
If it’s only a little bit,
I’ll give it a try. Oh yeah…
In a dream, to think you’d say something like “You made it.”
I want to disobey.
Ah… which is my true flame?

Hey, the voice of my heart
is calling out the truth. Ah, ah.
It’s telling me to take care not to be swallowed up.
We tangle together
but why? Why? Why?
My heart rate
can’t be stopped.
Even your heart rate
is the same as mine.

Kidnapped from a world of illusions,
I don’t want to be swallowed up.
I can get over there. Yeah…
I dig it up and it’s twisted. You got it.
I’ll stand still.
Ah… This is my real flame.
Only my heart.

Your dream will someday snap.
I searched for something I lacked.
I take your hand
and kidnap you, heading to the world you gave me.
As it reacts to the truth, I can’t stop my heart rate.
That must be only—

(Kidnapped from a world of illusions…)
My heart rate
will always be only—
(Ideals and reality create gaps, and they close in.)
My heart rate.
(My heart and reality stifle tenderness.)
I can’t disobey. I’m lame.

children’s game

synchro2children’s game

Vocals: あやぽんず* (Ayaponzu*)
Lyrics: ticat
Arranged by: kaztora
Album: Synchro 2 (シンクロ2) 【Official Site】
Circle: ShinRa-Bansho (森羅万象)
Event: Reitaisai 15 [RTS15]
Original Theme: Dullahan Under the Willows [柳の下のデュラハン]


ticat posted a bit about this track on her Twitter. She mentions that it’s about a tragedy. Everyone shrugged off the blame, saying the same thing: “it wasn’t me.” Meanwhile, the gardenias were looking at the moon without speaking. Where is the 9th person…?

There’s a possible pun in this song: gardenia (クチナシ – kuchinashi), a type of flower referenced in the song, is pronounced the same as ‘something unspoken’ (口無し – kuchi nashi). It also sounds a little like headless (首無し – kubi nashi), which describes Sekibanki a bit. There could be different interpretations of this song, but I think it’s about a group of kids ganging up on someone (Sekibanki), who then goes out to seek revenge on them. So… it’s pretty dark. Look out for the references to children’s games such as kagome kagome and hide and seek!

One final note: bracketed words were written like that in the original lyrics.


[Playing a game…]
Where are those bewildered bodies going? [Number 1 is here]
Yes, bearing the obvious answer, I pose my question. [Number 2’s on the other side]
A dilapidated house. [Number 3] A corner of the back street. [Number 4]
Something seems wrong with this heat haze…

In the park of beautiful gardenias , atop the slide, [atop it]
Everyone chanted in unison: [“It wasn’t me!”]

Ah… And then they leaped out, decapitated them, and laughed.
Children here, there, everywhere!
It must have been me they did it to.
Ready? [Not yet!]
[Woh…] It must [Woh…] be somewhere,
Or so I believed.
Listen—those old tales
are the sorts of things that… you can’t possibly tell now.
[Woh… playing a game…]

After school, they play hide and seek at dusk [searching for the next one]
chasing after a shadow that must have vanished [they kicked it]. 5! [6!]
At the school gate [7!] a silhouette stands [8!].
A figure stands left out from their friends. Who is it? One left now… [Not ready yet!] (1)

The gardenia was watching everything (that day).
As for the rumoured dullahan… who’s the storyteller? [“It’s you!”]

Ah. The moon was watching, watching, waxing.
Near and far, hey… kids!
Stretching, stretching, stretched out, or so they say.
Ready? [Not yet!]
[Woh…] Everyone [Woh…] covers their eyes.
Give it back right now!
Who will I steal away? Who will I destroy? After all,
I’ll never, ever forgive them for this…

I can’t see any signs of remorse.
I pushed and was pushed back in return.
I can’t see any signs of remorse.
It’s sad, [all cut open] wait! [Stop!]

I peep right in…
Stop it, stop it, stop it, hey! Someone!
Kagome, kagome. Now, the kids
form a circle, circle, circle around the secrets. Ready? [I’m coming now!]
[Woh…] Tomorrow it’ll surely be [Woh…] an unfamiliar face.
“I won’t let you escape…”

Everything is stained red and blue:
Hearts, bodies. Still, they’re kids.
Someday, somewhere, for some reason, I’ll get rid of them all in the end. [9!]
[There’s no going back!] Though I search,
[There’s no going back!] Though I search,
I can’t forgive you now…
The sun comes out, comes out, comes out today
and from my swollen, swollen, swollen heart:
“Who was there behind you?”
Who was it? Playing a game.

(1) Who is it? (誰そ彼 – tasokare) is believed to be a precursor to the word for dusk (黄昏 – tasogare), as dusk is the time when it is no longer possible to tell who you’re speaking to [reference, in Japanese].