Wednesday, January 18, 2012

BlackHole 2011 Final Gig

Sorry this wasn't up sooner.  I would've had it up days ago if not for an extremely busy week that I did not see coming.  Even my weekend, which would've been nice and relaxing since I stayed in Gunma, was instead taken over by an all-night birthday party for some friends of mine.  But now I'm getting back on track.

So this is the big gun. This is Black Hole's New Years event. Seventeen bands. Twelve hours. If I'm not mistaken, I saw more bands in that twelve hour time period than I did spending two days at V-Rock Festival a couple years ago.

So this shit's about to get serious. Black Hole actually hosted two New Years shows, and this was the second one. But the first one was the more colorful, oshare-type event, and this was the “dark” event. Wasn't a difficult choice to make. Also, this event worked like a lock-in. You could only enter once, no leaving, and everyone was only allowed one carry-in item (like a purse or backpack). Because it was a lock-in, Black Hole posted the schedule online so people could see exactly what time bands were playing and for how long. That way, people could choose when to arrive and get locked in, and also figure out when they wanted to leave. Unfortunately for MelJay and I, the first band playing was DEZERT, and the headliner was DIAURA. Meaning we had to stay for the whole thing. Crap.

So we got up extra early in order to make sure we had some food for the show. Doors opened at 11:30, and the show started at noon. We originally planned on going to Jonathan's for a real meal before lock-in, but MelJay realized she forgot her ticket right before we got on the train, so she had to go back to the hostel to get it. We only lost about twenty minutes, but it was just enough time loss that we decided we had to downgrade our meal to McDonald's. So we went to Ikebukuro and went into the McDonald's for some shaka-shaka chicken and fries. There were a few other people in there who were obviously going to the show.

Including Jojo and Andy from THE GALLO. Oops. Well, that's the second time we've run into them without their make-up on. Sorry, guys. Next time, try not eat in a popular fast food joint right near the venue you're about to play at. I didn't actually see Jojo, other than his blond hair as he went down the stairs, but MelJay got a good look at him as he went by, and said he looked right at us, then quickly turned away. There's kinda no mistaking his face. I clearly saw Andy go down the stairs about ten minutes later. Wonder why they didn't leave together. Anyways, MelJay and I finished up our food, then left McDonald's. We stopped in a convenience store on the way to pick up food (like sandwiches and rice balls) and water for the show. Saw plenty of other indies girls in there buying stuff too.

Then we joined the line. At which point I got the first indication that we were going to be dealing with some serious bitches at this show (I mean, indies girls are often bitches, but this show took it to a whole new level). While in line, I looked down and noticed someone's Suica card lying on the sidewalk (Suica cards are used like debit cards and in place of tickets at train stations). I picked it up and said, “someone dropped a Suica card...” The girl in front of me whipped around, snatched the card out of my hand, and grumbled, “su'masen” (“'scuse me”). Geeeeez, sorry. I wasn't stealing it! In fact, I was seconds away from asking the people around me if it was theirs! A "thank you" would've been nice. No way that bitch would've noticed she dropped her card if I hadn't picked it up! But you know what really caps off this story? A few minutes later, I accidentally dropped my 500 yen coin on the ground while digging through my wallet. The same girl who dropped her Suica made absolutely no attempt to fetch it for me, even though it landed between her feet, and she moved out of the way and gave me an extremely annoyed look when I apologized and crouched down to retrieve it. I should've smacked some manners into that fucker! But I got revenge by having a better ticket number than her and getting in before she did. So HAH!

Although, I should mention that when the staff walked up and down the line shouting that we could only enter once, a lot of girls gasped in shock.

Seriously?  Fuckin' seriously?  Well, enjoy starving and dehydrating for twelve hours, ladies.  Even the foreigners read the Japanese information better than you did.

Once inside, I began to realize how many girls smuggled in extra bags. Sigh. That oughtta help the situation. It wasn't too crowded yet because a lot of people didn't care about stuff like DEZERT, but I knew it was going to get nasty in a few bands. And, in fact, spot-saving had already begun, which is just so unbelievably obnoxious, I have no words for it. We'll deal with some of those brats later.

Let's get started, shall we? No time to spare! For ease of scrolling, if you want to jump around, here's the order of the bands (and this is exact - I got it from Black Hole's official list):

DEZERT
XodiacK
THE GALLO
Luzmelt
BLOOD
DEPAIN
SCAPEGOAT
LuLu
Velbet
MoNoLith
Lycaon
AUBE
Para:noir
MEJIBRAY
FEST VAINQUEUR
heidi. (special guest)
DIAURA

So our first band up is DEZERT:

So gawth, they shit eyeliner.

They've appeared on this blog several times. They're a n00blet band, which is why they went first. MelJay and I went up to the front for them, which was difficult, since we had spot-savers around us taking up space and looking pissy whenever hair hit them in the face. But whatever. DEZERT put on an enjoyable show as always, and Chiaki decided to wear make-up like The Crow, with a creepy black smile drawn on his face. Their drummer dropped out of the band recently, but the band continued on just fine and did a good job of establishing the dark atmosphere of the next twelve hours. Chiaki's MC wasn't quite as confident as usual, however. It was still funny, but he seemed nervous and unsure of himself (maybe because of all the obvious spot-savers). He also asked bassist SaZ to say something, at which point SaZ just went up to the microphone and muttered, “ohayou gozaimasu” (“good morning”) and then backed away. Love you too, SaZ, lol. We did gyaku-dive as usual, and I managed to get several jumps in to appease the SaZ Monster. He jumped off the stage as usual and pushed people up, but didn't bother with me, which made me happy. Maybe I'm finally doing it enough, lol.

Unfortunately, MelJay didn't have such a good time of it, thanks to the goddamn bitches spot-saving up front. One of the girls – who I'm going to call RatFace from here on out – was trying to hold a good three spots in the second row. According to MelJay, RatFace kept pushing MelJay out of the way while she was trying to enjoy DEZERT, because MelJay seemed like a threat to RatFace's spot. Weeeell, I guess MelJay finally couldn't take it anymore, so she whipped around and pushed RatFace back. That's when I finally noticed what was going on, simply because RatFace suddenly started screaming at MelJay like she'd murdered her puppy. I couldn't hear what RatFace was yelling over the music, but it involved a lot of “r”-rolling and everything was ending in “e” and “ze”, which means she was using extremely confrontational attack language in Japanese. Geeeeeez. I thought MelJay must've crushed the girl's foot or punched her in the face, the way she was screaming. I can't believe she was screaming at MelJay just because she pushed her back while trying to enjoy a band.

RatFace, you are officially sitting on the throne of Queen Bitch. Fuck. You. 

Our next band up is............. XodiacK:
Are those abs real, or computer generated...?!!

Okay, I'm not positive about what's going on with XodiacK, but I'll do my best.  I guess they started activities in 2008 and used to be a genre they called "galaxy metal."  Then, much like the band LuLu, everyone but the vocalist suddenly fled from the band, leaving the vocalist to figure out what the hell to do.  I guess XodiacK's vocalist recently replaced three of the four missing members and started up activities, but the band may no longer be "galaxy metal" (at least, that's what their fans seem to think).  But now it sounds like XodiacK was set to go on hiatus for an undisclosed amount of time... the day after this show.  Which might explain a few things, so keep that in mind!

So, from what I can gather, XodiacK's vocalist is not a vocalist.  He is -the Absolute-EROS.  As in, websites do not list him as a vocalist.  They list him as EROS.  Simply being EROS is his job.  But he actually can sing.  And his live growling abilities are actually pretty impressive.  I was watching casually until EROS started growling, and then I suddenly perked up and paid attention.  He really reminded me of some performers I used to see... like someone took Magack from SeVIIens and Nobro from VAJRA and squished the two into one being.  Which only added to my extreme amusement when I looked them up and realized their new bassist is from SeVIIens.  Haaaah, I used to see that band all the time, lol.

So for awhile I was just enjoying them because, hell, they were putting on a good show.  Good energy, good stage presence, overall pretty intense for the second act.  I never would've guessed that these guys were already scheduled for hiatus.  But what really surprised me was the end of their performance...

Basically, EROS paused the show (like a pseudo-MC).  Then he proceeded to say one of the ballsiest things I've ever heard a vocalist say.  First he yelled at the audience to clear the front and get their shit out of the way.  He literally said something like, "if you don't move your things, we're going to ruin them!"  So the audience quickly scrambled to gather their possessions and run to the sides and the back of the venue.  Except spotsavers.  Sucks to be them.  Then EROS basically yelled, "and if you're not here for XodiacK, go home!"  Except he used the word "kaere!" with an "r"-roll, which means he basically yelled, "if you're not here for XodiacK, get the fuck out of here!"  The audience looked absolutely stunned.  I was like, "oh damn.  This dude has balls."  The reason they cleared the area was so that the XodiacK fans could mosh during the next song.  Not just cute bouncing around and pinball-ing each other, but actually pushing and shoving and fighting and moshing.  So yeah, anyone who left their shit in that area... it probably got totaled.

When their performance was done, EROS pulled out what looked like a big glass bottle of soda.  Aaaaw, he really is like Nobro!  Then, after the band was done exiting the stage, their drummer came out and gave me Shock #2.  He took his unfinished water bottle and, with absolutely no expression on his face whatsoever, baseball-pitched the bottle into the crowd as hard as he could, hitting a girl in the face.  As everyone rushed to the girl's aid, the drummer simply left without a single glance.

Holy.  Shit.

XodiacK wins the award for Biggest Balls in the Scene right now.  Daaaamn.  Too bad they're going on hiatus, I'd like to see that shit again.

Moving on, the next band up is our old friend THE GALLO.  They recently completely changed their image and costumes, but I couldn't find a damn picture of it, so just enjoy Jojo's fork hat one more time:

Delicious, delicious fork hat.  You could eat a whole pie at once with that hat.

As usual, they started up with Liberi Fatali.  MelJay and I moved back up, despite RatFace bristling like the rodent that she is.  There was the usual  banging of spoons on bowls as the band came on stage with lanterns.  When Jojo came out, I noticed the first unusual thing going on with him that day: he held up his bowl and spoon, but he never actually banged them together.  He just mimicked the motion without making the utensils touch.  Which was... odd.

Basically, I think Jojo was having a bad day.  He gave no indication of that while actually performing, and the band did a great job as usual and played lots of fun songs, and Jojo performed like he always does.  But his usual flairs were missing.  No chocolate, no goofy posing...  I wouldn't have thought much about it, except Jojo skipped his MC.  When it was time for MC, the band all stood around while Jojo faced away from the audience.  The band looked like they were waiting for Jojo to say something just as much as the audience was.  Normally, Jojo grabs the doll Vivi and does a ventriloquism act.  Instead, he just faced away from us for awhile and pretended we weren't there.  The doll was sitting on the equipment, but Jojo didn't touch it.  Then Jojo finally turned around and signaled for the music to start, and they continued on.

So that was weird.  I wonder what Jojo's problem was.  It was their first day in their new costumes, but I doubt that would've put him in a bad mood.  And the rest of the band seemed fine.  Strange.

Ah well!  Let's move on!  Next band up is Luzmelt:

Are they standing in water because they're LuzMELTing?!  Haha...

So... they announced they were breaking up a few days after this show, so..... talking about them seems kinda pointless, lol.

Actually, it's too bad, cuz they weren't bad, and they were the first band that had at least half the audience participating.  The vocalist has a good screaming voice, and the songs were fun enough.  Kinda felt bad for them during the last song, because it was obviously supposed to be a "marching" song, and the vocalist was on the crate marching and trying to get the audience to do the fierce, march-y hand gestures with him (it was a really screamy song, too, and that's when I noticed that this guy was really good at screaming), but those girls just jumped up and down all cheerfully, which didn't fit the mood too well.  I don't know why Luzmelt decided to quit, though.  They gave no indication of any problems at the show.  Oh well, another one bites the dust, I guess...  Typical indies...

Neeeext up... oh fuck, I have to talk about BLOOD now.  Alright, here's BLOOD:

So gawth, they shit... I'll shut up now :-/

Oooooh my gawd, what.  Whaaaaaaat the hell was this?!!  I have no idea if this band was supposed to be serious, or funny, or evil, or comical, or what.  Maybe it's just... really dark humor?  I have no idea.  I was standing there with one eyebrow raised while MelJay was laughing her ass off, so that should tell you something.

Sooo... the band was dressed like a typical, gothy VK band.  Nothing unusual there.  The music sounded pretty typical too.  Atmospheric-y, metal-y, gothiness.  That's not what was odd.  It was the vocalist.  This guy......... what the fuck, man?!!  Where do I even begin?!!

First of all, he was wearing a g-string.  How do I know this?  Because his pants were pulled down below his hips, and most of the g-string was showing.  I initially shrugged it off, because dressing like a skank seems to be "in" in the indies world lately.  But then... the vocalist kept dancing around and pulling at his g-string, or jumping on the crate and wiggling his half-naked butt at everybody.  Or belly-dancing.  Very strange, awkward belly-dancing.  Which seemed to be for comical purposes.  It looked like he was making fun of club dancers.  But then sometimes he did more typical stuff, like when the crowd did gyaku-dive, he pulled people into the barrier and stuff.  So that's more standard... until he jumped off the stage, ran around the audience, squeezed between two girls, grabbed their hands, and started jumping up and down happily with them.

Dude... the hell?

It gets weirder.  He climbed back on the stage, jumped on the crate, turned away from the crowd... and then pulled his pants down.  And slapped his bare ass at us.

My god.  A VK guy just flashed his bare ass at the audience.  Well I never...  The crowd looked stunned, lol.

So it sounds like pure comedy, but then there was other stuff... like the fact that the vocalist decided to scratch his chest over and over with such intensity that it looked like he'd been attacked by a thorn bush, and he was literally dripping blood.  He didn't just leave marks on his chest, he drew enough blood to drip the stuff.

Because the band is called BLOOD, I guess...?  So what I'm gathering here is that the guy is just literally insane.  It's not a matter of whether he's funny or serious... he's just out of his fucking mind.

So that was BLOOD.

Next up!  DEPAIN:

They say if a man touches his belt, it means he's thinking about sex.

Last time I saw them, I thought they seemed a little tired, but it went better this time.  Nothing much to report, other than the fact that they were very good, and I enjoyed watching them.  Also, the vocalist wasn't wearing any lipstick, which surprised me (he's usually wearing an obscene amount of it), and I noticed he kept licking his lips the whole performance.  Must've been nice to be able to do that without a mouthful of chemicals, lol.

Next band up is SCAPEGOAT.  Hoo boy.  I used to see SCAPEGOAT all the time, back in the day.  I had a certain image of SCAPEGOAT in my mind, based on what I used to see.  They were always just a standard VK band doing rock-esque music.  Nothing too strange about that.  That was back in the days when the band had a lot of black and leather going on in their costumes, and the vocalist wore black lipstick and put fake cuts on his chest.  The band definitely had a darker feel to it.  You know how I know I've been out of the scene too long?  This is SCAPEGOAT now:

My eyes!  The goggles do nothing!!!

Hey, JRock!  Anyone else wanna go oshare?!  Anybody?  Guys?!  It's anybody's scene now!  Band isn't going too well?  That's okay, just dunk your body in a tub of mixed paint, no one'll mind!  It's popular.  It's not like SCAPEGOAT's music was ever that amazing anyways, but now... now it's cheerful.  Ew.  If I hadn't recognized the vocalist's face, I never would've believed it was the same band I used to see.

Le sigh.

Oh, and the vocalist dragged some staff guy on stage and humiliated him in front of everyone by trying to get him to stand on the crate and sing.  The poor guy looked like he wanted to die, lol.

Next band up is LuLu:

Jailed for malpractice?  BA-ZING!

LuLuLuLuLuLuLuLuLuLuLuLuLuLuLuLu, LULU!  LULU! In my head, that was the Batman theme.  Shut up, I'm sleepy.

So... we met up with LuLu during my last indies post, and I said I'd talk about them more this time.  So here we go.  LuLu is a "doctor-kei" band.  They, like last time, were wearing doctor coats and had the stage covered in gauze and sirens and stuff.  Vocalist Taa introduced the band by saying something (don't remember exactly what) that translated to something like, "welcome to the hospital!"  So... yeah... um... it's a cosplay band and stuff.  They're unusual, I must say.  The music itself is nothing intriguing - it's pretty standard rock-esque VK music, though I'll admit it's very, very catchy.

Taa's voice and behavior, however... Hmmmmm...  I find Taa to be such a baffling human being, I actually went online just to see what other people have to say about him.  What I've gathered is that LuLu fans practically worship the guy, whereas those who are just checking the band out for the first time have a variety of, um... "colorful" opinions about him.  I believe I saw a YouTube commenter say something like, "the vocalist's voice makes me gag."  I'll admit, Taa's voice is not exactly pleasing to the ears (although, oddly enough, I think his voice sounds better live than it does recorded).  In some ways, Taa's voice is perfect for his role because he sings like he's sick.  Or has a brick stuck in his throat.  Something like that.  It almost sounds fake, but when he MCs, his voice is no different.  In fact, when he was doing his MC at this show, some of the girls around me were laughing.  And I'm not sure I blame them.  LuLu fans, you gotta admit, the guy doesn't exactly sound normal

And he doesn't behave normally either.  Like, he'll stop in the middle of a performance, lift his hands in the air, and wiggle his fingers with a face like O_O  Why does he do that?  Some of the girls in the audience were laughing and imitating it, so now I randomly do it in MelJay's face when I'm bored, lol.  And Taa's face never seems to change.  He always has the same expression, no matter what's going on.  Which is why I'm so confused about how good the audience is at catching him when he stage-dives, since his face gives no indication that he's about to jump.  Yet they catch him every time, no problem, and throw him back.  Actually, I think this one girl forgot that Taa has fake blood all over his coat, because she caught him, and then suddenly her hand went flying away from a bloodstain like she'd been burned.  Duuuuur.

So I'll let you dear readers be the judges.  Here's some footage of LuLu.  Check out Taa's voice for yourself.  He doesn't really start singing until about 1:25, but when he does, it's pretty epic.  I start laughing the moment he starts singing, I can't help myself.  Also, enjoy Taa's many hand-movements, despite an ever-unchanging face:



One last thing about LuLu.  I guess they take this doctor-kei thing to a level in which each member of the band is actually assigned a role at the "hospital."  So vocalist Taa is the "hospital director", and guitarist Saiyuki is the band's psychiatrist.  Their other guitarist, Sayu, is the doctor of internal medicine.  Drummer Manami is their ophthalmologist (eye doctor, basically), and bassist Ryusuke is their ear, nose, and throat doctor.  This caused an odd discussion between MelJay and I, which went something like this:

MelJay: I'm really disappointed in that list.  Why don't they have a lady doctor?!

Me: What...?

MelJay: You know, a gynecologist!

Me: Uuuh... cuz that's dirty?

MelJay: Isn't the band supposed to be dirty?

Me: It... it's just a cosplay band.

MelJay: Well, yeah, but they're dressed like doctors.  Isn't that supposed to be kinky?

Me: I... hadn't thought about that :-(

MelJay: How could you not think that?!  That's the first thing I thought!

Me: I don't know, I just didn't think doctor-kei was supposed to have a sexual connotation.  I guess we can't prove that it does.  The band hasn't implied anything sexual about it.

MelJay: Doesn't mean the fans haven't thought about it.

Me: ..........................one of their old members was a pediatrician.... :-(

Determined to figure out if LuLu is meant to be taken sexually/is taken sexually by the fandom, I returned to The Internet.  I looked at the comments under their #1 hit song, and the top rated comment read, "I want Taa to be my SEX doctor."  It had 121 thumbs up.

Fuck.

And I'm aware of the fact that I didn't actually give a personal opinion on LuLu.  At this point, I simply don't have one, other than confused amusement, lol.

Next band up is Velbet:

Cosplay: it's fun for the whole family.

The usual.  Not bad.  Nothing to say.  They've changed costumes and now look more like The GazettE than ever.  I mean, the vocalist is even wearing the fabric from an ugly sofa, just like Ruki would!  I also just found out the vocalist's name is Riuki.  My gawd.  That is fucking HILARIOUS.  But whatever, they're fine, even if they never leave much of an impression on me.  The fans were still driving me crazy, so I was staying in the back at this point to avoid all the bitches.  It was getting so crowded, it was impossible to sit or move, and everyone was getting nasty and starting to give each other really mean looks.  I didn't want any part of that, so I started to go into shut-down mode.

Next band up is MoNoLith:

The goggles still do nothing!!!

I... don't... remember... anything...  I was getting pretty brain-fried by this point.  It had already been at least seven hours, and my ham sandwich and onigiri hadn't done much to replenish me.  A lot of girls had been rocking out and hadn't had anything to eat this whole time, and it may have been around this time that we had a girl finally faint and get carried out by the staff.  Whoops.  Also, I can't remember who started it, but it might've been the vocalist of MoNoLith (or maybe Velbet...?  Fuck if I know) who realized the crate was higher than usual and lent easy access to the bar holding up the lights across the ceiling.  Which began a trend of vocalists hanging precariously off that thing.  Which was probably not a good idea.

Next up is Lycaon:

Pull one thread on these guys' outfits and the whole thing comes undone.
So Yuuki, probably backstage, saw what MoNoLith was doing and was like, "oh, fuck yeah, I want to be a monkey too!"  While the band's performance was the usual (with plenty of tongue from Satoshi), Yuuki decided the light fixture hadn't taken enough stress from grown men hanging off of it (although I'll be surprised if Yuuki actually weighs as much as a Golden Retriever).  He spent most of the performance clutching the beam holding up all the lights and hanging over the audience.  Which was making the pole start to bend.  Which did not look good from where I was.  What really got me was that Yuuki actually looked up at one point, noticed that he was crippling the light fixture, and just shrugged and continued what he was doing.  A staff guy came by at one point and tapped him on the back, and I thought the guy was telling Yuuki to stop it (and I think Yuuki thought that too because he let go pretty fast), but the staff guy was actually just giving Yuuki a new mic, since the last one was having problems.  I feel like the staff guy picked a pretty awkward time to switch out the mic, though, lol.

Uuuuuuum, not much else to say about Lycaon.  The audience cleared out big time after that, which was nice.  It was like the venue unbuttoned a tight pair of pants. 

Next band up is the return of AUBE:

That does it.  I'm throwing out these goddamn goggles.

Well, there was no reindeer costume this time.  Just normal costumes.  Performance wasn't bad.  Thanks to all the Lycaon fans bailing, the audience had plenty of room to do the (borderline ridiculous) para-para that goes on for AUBE.  There's spinning, dancing, and towel-tossing involved.  Unfortunately, when the vocalist tossed his towel, it simply never came back down.  Oops.  Must be the light fixtures getting revenge, lol.

Next up is Para:noir:

Fun fact of the day: Para:noir is actually pronounced "paranoia."

Can I squee for a moment?  Is squeeing okay?  I know I'm not very fangirly and I don't have much squee inside me, but this is a squee moment:

I GOT TO SEE SHOU FROM UNSRAW AS THEIR SUPPORT DRUMMER, SQUEEEEEEE!

I'm sorry.  Really.  Truly.  I don't usual squee unless it's over a baby animal, a Dir en grey ticket, or pumpkin-flavored anything.  But... but... but... it's Shou!  From UnsraW!!!  I'm sorry, it's stupid, but it made me happy.  The demise of UnsraW might be #1 on my list of music-related frustrations these past few years.  I found something amazing, only to have it taken away from me within half a year.  To this day, I still have a pang of sadness every time UnsraW comes up on my shuffle (and sometimes I just sigh and skip the song because it'll just make me sadder).  So seeing Shou was aaaaaawesome.  Omigawd, he's as cute now as he ever was.  He looked kind of bored sometimes, but the rest of the time he was all happy smiles, just like the old days.  He's such a bright thing at the back of the stage and even the members of Para:noir kept going over to his drum set and smiling with him.  The rest of the band was fun too, and put on a very good show.  Para:noir is one of those bands that's improved immensely since I used to see them.  I feel like they've "grown up" these past few years.  Even if Shou wasn't there, I find their performances really fun.  But having Shou there was like the strawberry-cream frosting on the cake, and made me way happier than it should've.  Considering Shou was actually in Para:noir's last music video, I think he'll probably become official.  Which is probably for the best.  As much as I'd love to believe Yuuki will someday return and they'll reform UnsraW, realistically, I know this will never happen.  So they should all go find good bands to join!  But if Shou joins Para:noir, he might have to change his name.  They already have a Shou, lol.

Next band up is MEJIBRAY:

Possibly wearing less clothing than Lycaon.

Hrrrrrrrrm.........  Something was strange.  It started out normally enough.  A man in a black cloak with the hood pulled up was standing on stage, holding Meto's wheelchair while Meto sat, slumped over in his seat.  Then Meto rose eerily from the wheelchair and stumbled around the stage, staring wide-eyed at the audience, before putting his teddy bear up on the drum set and taking his position.  Some girl next to me was muttering about how scary it looked, lol.  I noticed the audience was strangely quiet, but I I didn't think about it much until Koichi came on stage.

Thaaaat's when it got weird.  Koichi came on stage, throwing the horns as usual, and the MEJIBRAY fans also threw the horns, but no one screamed, or yelled, or made any noise, or anything.  Which is, like, unheard of.  I just stood there, wondering what in the world was going on.  To me, it felt like a snub.  And apparently Koichi thought so too, because he came up to the front of the stage, and his eyes were darting around the crowd in confusion.  Honestly, it was a terrible moment.  Koichi looked so hurt.  Compared to his band mates, Koichi tends to be the most transparent when he isn't happy about something, so it was a pretty bad moment seeing that hurt look on his face.  He went to go pick up his bass while MiA came onstage, but the crowd was quiet for him too.  Luckily, MiA didn't bother to look hurt, and just threw the horns and went to his guitar like he always does.  When Tsuzuku came on stage, there were a few scattered screams, but not much else.  Tsuzuku didn't look as upset as Koichi, but he certainly didn't look happy.

What the hell was going on...?!

MEJIBRAY's performance at that point was all over the place.  They played fine, and it was fun and stuff, but the band's mood was a mess.  Tsuzuku seemed really distracted, and he was staring around the audience a lot like he was trying to figure out what the problem was.  At one point, he and I made eye contact, and he stared at me for a moment before making a weird, disgruntled face.  Then he mouthed something I couldn't understand and looked away.

What... what does that mean?!  Okay, now I was the one feeling slightly hurt.  I have no idea why he gave me that look, but I'm just not going to take it to heart.  I understand that the performance didn't go the way Tsuzuku wanted it, and he was probably in a bad mood.  I know I tend to be a complete poker-face at indies shows and never really look like I'm enjoying myself (which is probably why Sakura from Valluna used to pick on me so much), so maybe my blank face pissed him off after the crowd's bad reaction.

I suppose I'll never know.

When they were done, the band just sorta stormed off, except Meto, who stumbled around the stage clutching his head and shaking, before faking a seizure and collapsing to the floor.  Then the staff pulled the curtain closed.

That.  Was.  Weird.

Later on, MelJay and I were so disturbed by that hurt look on Koichi's face that we took a look at his blog to see what he said about the show.  He wrote something that roughly translates to, "the saizen sucked, but the view sure was nice."  Uh... ouch.

Next up was FEST VAINQUEUR:

So gawth they shit lightning...?  Also, why are so many bands posing above reflective surfaces lately?  Seriously, look at the other band photos above.  Why are they all doing that?!!
I....... sat down.  Nothing against FEST (although they didn't really impress me at the BORN two-man I went to), but I was tired, and it was already after 9:00, and I needed to get ready for DIAURA, who were scheduled to do a full show's worth of songs (because, clearly, Black Hole and DIAURA want to kill us).  So... I don't remember much.  My bad.

Next up was the show's special guest, heidi.:

They look... so happy to have their photo taken...

My apologies, heidi. fans.  I know these guys are popular and they were the special guest, but I still didn't get up.  So I don't remember anything.  Sorry.  The music sounded fine, though.

And then we finished off our twelve-hour stint in the darkness with DIAURA:

Now with 50% more Pimp Chair.
DIAURA somehow magically got the honor of headlining this big-ass event over bands like Lycaon.  Very impressive, you guys.  Very impressive.  However, as one would expect, most of the audience was gone by then, leaving under a hundred of us.  But who could blame them?  Many of the audience members were exhausted and hungry.  If they weren't a serious DIAURA fan, why stay?  Especially since, unlike all the other bands who only got to play 4-5 songs, DIAURA was scheduled for a full show's worth.  Only DIAURA fans were willing to stick it out through that.  Not to mention we had no way of knowing if DIAURA would be done in time for last train.  I was a little worried about it, but decided we'd just deal with that when it happened.

Anyways, we all looked pretty tired, but we made sure to cheer and throw the horns for the band when they came onstage anyways.  Yo-ka had previously commented on his blog that he understood we'd all be tired and worn out by the time DIAURA came on stage, but I didn't think for a moment that he'd actually show us any mercy.

And he didn't.  DIAURA played all their roughest songs - all the ones that require the most moving and rocking out.  Thanks, guys.  Buuuut I think we did our best, and that's what counts.  I'm sure that was good enough for the band.  Actually, due to the way our positioning shifted around for the entire show, MelJay and I wound up on Kei's side, which is unusual for us.  Man, Kei was on fire for the New Years show.  He was really hyperactive and spent most of his time up at the front of the stage, urging us on and taunting us.  He even spent a good amount of time standing on the barrier itself.  Go, Kei, go!  Usually Kei seems a bit reserved, but he did a great job at the New Years show.  Afterwards, MelJay was like, "I can't believe it, but being on Kei's side was actually really awesome!"

The rest of the band was in a good mood too, probably because they knew they were headlining this big event.  And because they'd been able to relax all day, unlike us.  Although, yo-ka started blogging about drinking coffee before noon, so I guess he was preparing.  And prepare he did.  I dunno how much caffeine yo-ka had by 10:00, but his eyes were like O__O for most of the performance, lol. 

Actually, I know yo-ka was in a damn good mood because he had another one of his ridiculously thankful MCs.  Sometimes he just gets like that, and I'm never sure where it's coming from.  Even though only a fourth of the audience stayed for DIAURA, and we all looked like zombies, yo-ka decided it was one of those times in which he had to explode love and puppies and kittens all over us.  He started going on and on about the birth of DIAURA, when it was just him and Kei, and how thankful he was to the fans who supported them.  Then he talked about how happy he was that they got Shoya (at which point Shoya looked really confused, pointed at himself, and was like, "me?!"  I think it's rare for Shoya to hear nice words directed at him by yo-ka, lol).  And then yo-ka said he was thankful that they got Yuu.  And he was thankful to the fans who continued to support them.  And he was thankful to us for coming to the show.  And he was thankful to us for watching all the other bands and supporting them too (no, really, he actually said that).  And he was thankful to us for staying so late.  And he was thankful to us for doing our best.  And he was thankful to us for existing.  And for breathing.  And for being alive.  And for not spreading The Plague.  And for helping him bury that dead bod - just kidding, lol.

Basically, yo-ka was just spewing happiness and thankfulness for no apparent reason.  That's alright, though.  I guess it's better than him being like, "I HATE YOU ALL!" and storming off, lol.

Despite our exhaustion, the band decide to throw in some dog-piling for encore.  Some people left before the band came back, but I can understand it, because we were getting dangerously close to last train and a lot of girls were pulling out their phones and checking train schedules (fun fact of the day, Black Hole has free wi-fi).  But DIAURA came back really fast, so I think they knew there was a time crunch.  The dog pile was small, and not that great, and I was feeling kinda "bleagh" by that point (mostly because all the rude people around me had put me in a bad mood), so I was just sorta staying out of it.  But then I noticed how happy and smiley yo-ka looked every time someone jumped in, so I finally sighed and ran up to the pile and threw myself into the mess.  At which point yo-ka looked at me, grinned, took a swig of water, and sprayed a geyser in my face.  Thanks, yo-ka.  I love you too, asshole.  I made sure to jump in the pile over by Kei, too, since he was being cool.  When Kei leaned down, I wound up with a handful of his hair, lol.  It was... crispy.

Anyways, the band actually ended the show before midnight (around 11:40), which was perfect.  They thanked us a bunch and exited the stage, and then the audience pretty much fled the venue in terror.  MelJay and I ran to the station, but it wasn't too bad.  I think we caught the third-to-last train, and we were able to make our transfer and get back to the hostel.  Yay us!

Then we spent the following night (actual New Years) in the hostel drinking a massive amount of Captain Morgan's rum and Dr Pepper while watching "How to Train Your Dragon."  That movie is so fucking cute when you're drunk out of your mind.  The other guests at the hostel looked incredibly amused by our drunken giggling.  Man... that's the most rum I think I've ever had at one time.  Happy New Yeeeear, lol.

So that's my post.  Yaaaaaay.  Not the best, I know, but hopefully that'll do.  I've got one more to go before I'm completely caught up on shows (and I'll probably throw in some miscellaneous posts I've been meaning to do some time soon, like food pic-spams, shopping pic-spams, and other such things).

See ya soon!

11 comments:

  1. Dude, this post is so awesome!!! Perfect account of all of they lolzy-assed stuff that went down that day. Good job at remembering all of that. I'm super impressed. And I really liked your snarky commentary laced in everywhere.

    That video of Lulu is priceless... he's soooo sooo weird! I couldn't stop myself from laughing. Man...

    Dude, when the guy from BLOOD launched off the stage like that, I was sure he was headed for us. Thank god he stopped a few rows in front of us XD

    DIAURA!easter egg: This is the show where it seemed like there was still a bit of tension between Shoya and yo-ka, but yo-ka was all... fuck it and gave Shoya a big smack on the lips at the end of the show. Shoya was super surprised, but ended up giving us all a huge grin at the end XD It seemed like their little fight/power struggle was ended there.

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  2. What was saizen again? The Mejibray part sure seems...weird. O_o

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  3. @Meljay: Oh yeah... the kiss... forgot about that, lol. I'm not good at remembering fanservice stuff XD I think yo-ka was probably just sick of fighting. It probably got exhausting going <___< for so many shows in a row, lol.

    @xfranczeskax: "Saizen" means "front row" in Japanese. It's the group of girls who take the first row in the audience and stand along the barrier. But "front row" has a more serious meaning at these shows. You have to actually sign up in a journal to be a part of a band's saizen (and the one in charge of the journal is like a "leader" of the band's fans). The saizen girls are sort of in charge of what goes on. So if the saizen decides a certain part of a song involves jumping, we all jump, for example. The saizen usually come up with all the furi when a new song happens. Also, if a band member has a birthday, it's the saizen who will arrange a cake for him and stuff. Saizen is like..... a mini fan club, lol. But you can ask to be a part of a saizen at just one show. The leader girl can refuse you, but some of them are pretty nice about it.

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  4. That sounds like a crazy show! Kudos for lasting the whole thing and for remembering so much, I can't imagine how tired you must have been after it!

    I didn't know XodiacK were going on hiatus :( I've followed them for the past few years and got quite into them - guess now I know why they haven't talked about releasing anything new lately. Damn it! (should have probably checked their blogs more often too lol).

    That's really strange about what happened with Mejibray, do you know why everyone was so quiet? It seems so odd...

    One last thing, what you said about the reflections on the bottom on the photos; they've been added on by people uploading the photos for last.fm. For the long photos, most of the members get cut off in the thumbnails so people add the reflection at the bottom so all the members are shown. lol

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  5. Sounds like you survived a marathon :)

    What happened with Mejibray was weird...and definitely sounds like it hurt the members (confidence-wise at least).

    Dear-goodness, spot-holders. I can only tolerate them if their friends show up a few minutes later. Any longer and its a nuisance. Shame you had to put up with ratface.

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  6. Oooh almost forgot! This is completely off topic, but I was wondering about the JET program. I read in one of your older posts that you're currently in it and my school just started posting posters around campus. Did you complete your degree before you applied or was it a "do it at the same time" thing?

    Thanks in advance :)

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  7. @Kyara: Yeah, I found out XodiacK was on hiatus while on last.fm, lol. I guess they were going to come out with a music video and had a sample up and everything, and then they pulled it and said they'd never release the video, even though they spent money on it! Which means it's a pretty serious hiatus :-/ Indies is such a frustrating scene sometimes, lol. And no, I still have no idea what was up with MEJIBRAY. It was so weird!!! Also, thanks for the info on the reflections in the pictures! It was really bugging me, lol, especially because I didn't remember the pamphlet pictures looking like that! XD

    @Colouring Needle: I did everything before I graduated (which was oh-so-fun, lol). I wanted to try and solidify something to do after college ASAP, so I spent my last semester of college filling out applications and interviewing alongside "studying" for finals, lol. It was exhausting, but certainly rewarding in the end!

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  8. @All Xodiack's Vocalist is in a new band called "Black gene for the next scene". It's Rame's (ex. Vidoll) new Band and seems to be very popular.

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  9. Awww.... I'm so sad you didn't review heidi. They are my favorite band in the universe ^^ But that's okay, I can understand you were very exhausted.

    Also, because you always write about Diaura, you made me listen to them, and I really like them! Next time I have a chance (probably spring break) I'll try to hit one of their concerts. Yo-ka is veeeery sexy. That is, i will after my 3-day heidi. concert extravaganza where I stalk them in various cities lol

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    1. are you Lindsay? just asking :D

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  10. Sorry for the lack of heidi. review m(-_-)m I was soooooo tired at that point. Maybe I'll run into them again and give them a proper listen, lol! And I definitely recommend a DIAURA show. The only reason I ever went to see DIAURA was because yo-ka was such an amazing performer in Valluna and I thought he and Kei were worth another visit. I'm glad I did! They're suuuuper fun!

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