Jadi inget pernah janji sama フランシズカくレア untuk posting laporan konser jrock. Arsip lama sih, dari tahun 2008, hampir 3 tahun yang lalu...reportase ini pernah saya posting di www.jdorama.com dan jpopforum.com. シズカーちゃん, utangnya lunas yaa... ^^ --------------------------------------------------------------- On January 12th 2008 I went in Osaka-jo Hall to catch my first L'arc~en~Ciel concert ever with a friend, Chiyoko-san. It was one of many tours held to promote their album, KISS which was released on 2007. It was my first L'Arc concert so I was HYPER even when Chiyoko-san informed me that we couldn't get a seat and the tickets were only tachimi (tachi - to stand, mi- to watch, it means you're standing in the back of the back-most row, a plain sucker, cause you must be at least hundreds of meters away from the stage).
When I arrived there at 2 PM, some tachimi people had already lined up from early in the morning to secure their place. After lining up for 2.5 hours in a freezing winter day it was such a huge relief when we finally made it going into the hall. From the place I was standing I could only see the giant monitor and barely the stage. The stage was adorned with bright red curtain with giant letters "Theatre of Kiss" and the tour icon, flaming lips sticking out a tounge, fashioned its top middle. The set stage gave the impression of an opera theatre. There were two giant monitors located on each side of the stage. Osaka-jo Hall is a round-shaped building with theatre seats surrounding a flat arena below and can hold more than 10,000 people. The concert was supposed to start on 5 PM but not until 5:20 PM that the light went off and the evryone began to scream. Seventh Heaven The curtain rose to reveal glitters and blinding lights lit rhythmically. The intro of 'Seventh Heaven' kicked in. The guys looked so good with their outfit. I noticed Hyde had a new haircut while Tetsu had braids with red feathers (like the one we saw in Seventh Heaven PV). The song was an excellent choice to begin with since it kept everyone excited. Everyone sang along and clapped, it was a wonderful atmosphere. I jumped up and down while trying to sing along, it was so much fun. And She Said The second song was a surprise, the bunny played a familiar tune on a piano. The crowd recognized it and began to cheer. 'And She Said' was playing. "This song is a very old one, isn't it?" Chiyoko asked. "Yes, indeed." I hadn't heard the song for quite a while so it brought back memories. Medley [Killing Me, New World, Driver's High, Shinshoku, Promised Land, As One, Stay Away, Heaven's Drive, Kuchizuke] The next song was 'Killing Me' with a background displaying a moving carrousel that ascended to the sky. Hyde and Tetsu moved around alot. Hyde reached out to the audience sitting on the left wing and was greeted with frenzy fans. They managed to touch him and some of them even managed to reach his hair and messed it out. But hyde didn't seem to bother he let out a big grin while kept singing. I envy them T__T Toward the second verse of the song, the bass tunes suddenly changed and 'New World' began to play. Hyde drank from a bottle and threw it to the audience in the arena. After the end of the verse "I'm awaken in the new world..", Hyde took a short pause and suddenly a sound of an engine vrooming in the background. It was time for 'Driver's High'! The audience went into hysteria. Everyone sang along and threw their hands up during "Crash!!.... into the rolling morning...Crash!!" it was so great being there and helped created such atmosphere. I'm sure any performer would appreciate such gesture from their audience. The medley took a long pause for a speech. Hyde welcomed the audience "Irasshai..." he sounded as if he was having sore throat. He seemed to struggle with his voice since it sounded lower and heavier than it normally should and it disappeared for a couple of times. Too bad I didn't understand most of what he was saying but the audience cheered and smiled during the speech, so it must've been quite entertaining. The speech lasted for about three minutes and then the medley continued to 'Shinshoku'. On the background a torso of a female puppet master was displayed, Tetsu and Ken were standing at the end of the strings giving the impression that they were the puppets. The stage went dim to give off gloomy atmosphere. During the chorus, the backlight lit dramatically and hyde slammed his microphone stand. It was amazing... The medley carried on to 'Promised Land' and 'As One'. At the end of the latter, they took another pause and Tet-chan took his turn. He stepped up and walked about playing his bass with a banana, he threw some to the audience. He gave off a solo play which extended to 'Stay Away'. Everyone sang along "Maybe lucky..maybe lucky..I can say I'm lucky..." and clapped together toward the interlude during which Tet-chan played his solo part. It was AWESOME... Yuki suddenly changed his pace into Heaven's Drive opening but turned it was only a tease, and the medley was closed with hyde singing "Kuchizuke o kawasou...." Bye Bye The next song was the one I hardly heard of, I was struggling to remember what the song was. Turned out it was 'Bye Bye'. The first time I heard it was from the Yoshioka rip so it sounded a bit different. Spiral I was wonderful but at the same time disturbing, the dizzying lights and the winding spiral moving inward on the background. This song have really grown on me since I saw the live. -Break- After the performance, the light went dark and it was time for commercial break. It was one of concert goodies sold as a merchandise. As always, L'Arc's commercial was quite random featuring pole dancers -__-; Daybreak's Bell The next song was one of my favorite, 'Daybreak's Bell'. At that time the LCD display screen went out to reveal bars and scaffolding on the background with intermittent flash from light bulbs on the back. It was simple yet intense performance. I remember on 1/13 concert, Hyde came up with the wrong line. When he realized it he withdrew himself from the mic with "oh sh*t.." expression across his face while covering his mouth. It was so funny. Alone en La Vida The monitor screen displayed a purple afternoon sky to give a serene atmosphere. During this song where Hyde was supposed to hit high notes he seemed to struggle even more with his voice. But that didn't let him run off focus. From the giant monitor, I could see that he poured all his emotions into the song that he looked overwhelmed. At the end of the song, his eyes were all watery and he wiped it before tears fell down..Trust me, seeing it live is WAAAAYYY...different from watching on DVD. You can feel all of this emotions and energy coming from the stage and the people that were watching. I was overwhelmed. Sunadokei The next was my most favorite song of Kiss album, 'Sunadokei'. The stage went completely dark with dimly spotlight on each members. Right behind hyde, holografic images of two fireflies dancing amidst the air. I love this song very much and the performance was so touching that I felt goosebumps allover and choked a few times. On the second day of the concert where I got the chance to see them closer, I even sobbed during that performance. It was THAT beautiful. If this concert would come out in DVD, I doubt it would turn out as emotional and beautiful as I saw it live cause no technology could capture the atmosphere I felt back then. Umibe The next piece was 'Umibe'. Before the concert I never liked the song very much. But it all changed the minute I saw it performed live, especially during the chorus. If Sunadokei got me choked, this song got me haunted more than a week. The stage was still dark and a holograffic image of a mermaid appeared at the center of the stage, floating about, drifting, just behind where Hyde stood. A very cool effect which will look good on DVD. Hyde's voice echoed high throughout the arena during "..namiutsu sunahama e to.....kaerou.!!!" It was so strong and compelling. This song has the strongest impact on me than any other songs they performed. My Heart Draws a Dream Charmed by Umibe, I stood still while Ken-chan began to play another piece. I recognized Ken-chan's high pitched guitar notes, it extended to the intro of 'My Heart Draws a Dream'. On the background cloud was drifting fast. It was a beautiful performance. Everyone sang along to "Yume o egaku yo..Yume o egaku yo.." and once again I felt this wave of energy running through me. Everyone put their hands up swayed it back and forth. This is how the perfect live should be... -Break- Ken Opened up speech and everyone was shouting his name. While smoking his cigarettes, he went on to greet the audience in Osaka-ben and everyone was laughing. At the end of his speech he introduced the upcoming single, Drink it Down. At that time Ken asked whether everyone knew what "Drink it Down" meant in japanese. There were several shouts suggesting japanese translations. Someone beside me shouted "NOME..!!!" Ken let out a big grin and he said "Nomikomu!!" ahh yes..that'd a more fitting translation I thought. Drink it Down 'Drink it Down' was intense, green lasers shooting up throughout the arena created a contrast with the red dominated stage. The lights lit rhytmically during the chorus. It was a performance loaded with so much energy that I felt my body was compelled to move to the beat. I remember headbanging all the way through performance. The live sounded so much better than radio rip. I'm really looking forward to the single. Revelation Gigantic hands (made of baloon) suddenly popped out from behind the curtain from each side of the stage, flailing, reaching out to the audience. It was such a suprise. At the same time gigantic boots alse appeared at the back of the stage. I really don't know what it meant. On the background, flash animation of the member's faces were displayed. Pretty Girl The next song was the ecchi-est and everyone's favorite, 'Pretty Girl' ;-) The song was so catchy I danced, clapped and sang along until I gasped out of breath. Hyde did his dance routines and wiggled his hips alot. As predicted it drove all the fangirls completely insane...if some of you girls were there you must've had major nose bled hahhaha Link After that, a catchy poppy tune was playing. It was 'Link'. To be honest, I'm a bit tired of that song but the clapping was too much fun to be missed :-D P'unk~en~Ciel - Feeling Fine 2007 After Link was finished the members went to the backstage but the fun was yet to be over when a set of drum with emerged from the bottom of the stage with a smaller backdrop that bore the name P'unk~en~Ciel on it. Soon the members came out again and all of them had changed their outfits. They switched places now, Ken-chan on drum, Yukki on bass, Hyde on guitar and Tet-chan on vocal. Tet-chan walked about playing with his banana water gun while greeting the audience, "Minna genki?" "...Genki?!!!!...P'unk~en~Ciel desu..!!!!" and everyone cheered. That time they played Feeling Fine 2007. First I was kinda nervous whether Hyde could really pull out the guitar solo just like he did in the single. But when he finally did, I was relieved. It even sounded better than the single. "Hyde's guitar playing is really improving, isn't it?" my friend commented. I couldn't agree more. It was an exhilarating performance. P'unk~en~Ciel - I Wish 2007 I have mixed feelings about this one. It was fun but sort of brought tears to my eyes since the song was so memorable. Most of the crowd was singing the chorus (ring bells through the window, I wish you smile for me, etc). When the song ended, Tet-chan walked up to Ken-chan and emptied his banana gun on him, then threw the banana gun into the crowd. Black Rose I never really liked the song but the live really changed my point of view. I used to skip it when I listened to the album but now I don't think I'll ever skip another song again. Some songs may need some time to grow on me so I'm just gonna give it another shot ^^ Ready Steady Go After Black Rose they took a short pause. Hyde took a sip and began to walk around "Osaka....!!!!" "YEAAHHHH..." "Osaka....are you ready...?!" "YEAAHHHH....!!!" "Are you f**kin' ready?!!!!" "YEEAHHH......!!!" everyone shouted from the top of their lungs it was deafening. And so 'Ready Steady Go'began, blinding yellow lights dominated the stage and the crowd went crazy. All the members moved alot during the performance and was greeted with frenetic fans sitting on the west and east wings. Hyde even rolled up on the floor while singing. On one side of the stage, a bunny and a crew dressed in a maid costume shooting balls from a plastic cannon to the audience. Hyde made a round of a crew in maid costume, grabbed his chest and swayed his hips behind him. That poor guy had been harassed by hyde :D Shout at the Devil The next song was 'Shout at the Devil'. The atmosphere got more and more intense with pyro effect. Fire balls were shooting up from the stage and an image of a devil's face was displayed on the background. At the end of the performance the devil's image was broken like pieces of glass. I think it was supposed to give the impression that evil would finally be destroyed or something like that. -encore- After the performance all the lights went off and the curtain was closed for encore. Two silhouettes fell upon the dark closed curtain. They took shape into two faces facing each other, approached closer and closer and finally took shape of two people kissing. Cute. Yuki no Ashiato The stage went dark again but soon after two giant monitors went back on to reveal hyde singing behind the closed curtain. It was the beginning verse of 'Yuki no Ashiato'. The curtain slowly rose to reveal a purple-ish stage set with piles of snow on the stage floor, sound system and everything, on the background images of pine trees and snowy landscape were displayed. At the end of the performance, white powder was poured down from above as if it was snowing. This set would totally look amazing on DVD. Hurry Xmas When Hyde announced that the next song would be the last song for the concert everyone went "Heeeee...??!!!!" in disappointment. And so Hurry Xmas rounded up the concert that night. Gigantic hands and boots once again emerged from behind the curtain to the audience. When the song had finally ended and all the members bid their farewell to the audience, I still couldn't believe it was over. I stood there trying to convince myself that they'd once again appear to play another song but the all the lights went back on and everyone began to leave. Chiyoko-san had to grab my hand "Kaerou.." to wake me up from dream. The next day, we were supposed head back to Toyohashi on the afternoon after making a visit to Osaka-jo Kouen (it's a 16th century castle built by Toyotomi Hideyoshi), but upon seeing the crowd lining up for the last day of the concert, we couldn't resist the urge to see it again. Even it was almost impossible to get a ticket on that day, but we lined up once more. We were lucky there were still some remaining tickets sold on that day, but most of them were the tachimis and very few with seats. But they sold all of them with the same price, 10,000 yen (1000 yen more expensive than the day before). So if you got another tachimi, it was plain suck cause you had to pay more to get the same position you were yesterday. Because there were so many of us and so few tickets they had to set up a lucky draw for all of us. Chiyoko-san was very lucky since she got a seat only 14 rows away from the stage while I got another tachimi. Later on she told me that we'd better switch places cause she knew how I wanted to see the concert so much. I almost broke out crying when she said that. She said that chances were I'd only stay in japan for 2 years while Laruku didn't always held tour every year. But since she stays in japan and could see concerts as many times as she wants, she'd put me first saying that that kind of opportunity didn't come everyday and I'd better use it. I just stood there speechless when she grabbed my hand to show me a place where we should meet again after the concert. The tachimis and people with seats came to the bulding from separate entrance. With so many people and so many doors it'd be hard to find each other since once you entered the building you were not allowed to use a cellphone, we'd better meet each other in time since we got a train to catch. If we missed the train, we wouldn't be able to go back home. I still couldn't believe myself when I accepted her offer. I felt really bad because she sacrificed herself for me standing hundreds and hundreds of meters away from the stage, the place where I supposed to be. While there I was sitting in her place, so close to the stage. I felt so terrible. I was able to deliver this detailed story upon what I was seeing from the 2nd day of the concert. They only switched the song order and replaced some with another but basically used the same set and effect. I was so emotional that day I choked and cried during the performance. It felt too good to be true yet so hard to know that someone had sacrificed herself in order to give me that experience. I will treasure the memory of that day for the rest of my life. the video of each performance can be watched here
osaka-jo hall (www.wikipedia.org)