Friday, October 30, 2009

V-Rock Fest '09 Day 2!!!

Well, let’s see, where did I last leave off? I think I got through the first day of my V-Rock Fest, right? So then, I suppose for continuity, I’ll start this e-mail with the second day. Well, truth is, I’d set my clock so I would get up in time to take the hour ride over there and be at the place with about 30 min. of cushion time before the first band started (of course they would put a band I want to see first!), but unfortunately, the fatigue and hairspray of the night before kept me glued to my pillow a half an hour after the alarm went off. So, rather than waste time dolling myself up for a dark concert hall, I sort of tried to attempt to get a brush halfway through my hair, through on a longsleeved shirt and vest (I’d wisened up from the day before), and headed out, and quite luckily, I got there in time and walked right in and they started. The first band was Kagrra, and they really put on a good show. Because their style is traditional with fans and kimonos, the lightshow made them look even more awesome; I was rather crestfallen to find out later that at their merchandise booth they didn’t actually sell fans with the logo on it (and why they don’t, I can’t understand since that’s their symbol and all their human fans bring fans with them to the concert). Oh well. I can’t remember who all I saw after that (I’d have to look at my booklet), but I bought some merchandise and then, despite the fact that I’d expected it to be a boring day (most of the bands were little name, independent groups), I think the second day was actually more fun than the first. Part of it probably was the fact that I didn’t have to stand around for 2 and a half hours for it to start, so it seemed to move faster. The only downside was that there were a lot of screaming/loud bands, which isn’t my style at all. But I did get to see Kra, (adorable with his little scarf and hat and corderoy jacket), Ayabie (who seemed to get along real well together), Duel Jewel (by far the most fun band to watch, full of energy and laughs), Daizystripper (fun in a nutball sort of way), Angelo (very aging rockstar) and then other bands I don’t care about like Sadie (screamer), D (crazy red eyes and black leather), Plastic Tree (the only person there on drugs), some Japanese lady I wasn’t keen on, and some really old fellow with long, princess-y hair that more or less only played guitar, despite having four other guitarists with him; he changed guitars every time and each was gaudier than the last (like the Liborache of guitars). I did sort of see Vidoll, though I was farther away and somewhat tired by that point. And, oh my gosh, I saw LM.C, the band that I was supposed to get to see in Texas (the ones I actually WENT to Texas to see), and who couldn’t make it because of swine flu. So I got to see them and they were…amazing. I mean, amazing. Fun and wacky and totally wonderful and energetic and I hope I get to go to a real concert of theirs. I mean, the lights dimmed and the ‘We will, we will rock you’ song started, done in lamb ‘baa’s, and then their mascot guy, with the silvery skullish mask thing came out on those bouncy stilts, and everyone filed out and they sang Oh My Juliet. And Aiji looked crazy awesome and played crazy awesome. I mean, anyone who can play Fur Elise on his electric guitar, wins in my book. They sang Oh My Juliet and Funny Fantom and something else that I can’t remember the name of where everyone on stage got a searchlight and they dimmed the big lights and everyone was moving around on stage with their flashlights. They sang about five songs and closed with Rock the LM.C (of course). While Maya was running around singing, the skull mascot guy was bouncing around on his stilts, the crew was inflating a twenty foot tall rabbit balloon (like their logo), and Aiji was standing all cool center stage while more crew members stood behind him on either side waving mock Japanese flags of black and red. It was truly freaking awesome! So, that was my favorite part of day two. After LM.C, I immediately went over to the other stage and plotted out my spot for The Gazette (they were playing last), even though it was over two hours before they came on, and it was a good thing I did, because the place filled up in no time. The only thing that kept anyone away was the fact that Versailles was playing in the other room. So I stood around for…ever, until finally a bunch of red lights started flashing over the audience, and the red “The Gazette” banner was lit up on the stage and one by one, amid gutteral growls (something that is particular to Gazette fans to imitate that growly scream Ruki does I guess) Kai came out with his fake dread locks or whatever their supposed to be, and then Uruha (looking good but not as good as I’d expected; much more manly), then Reita and Aoi (who looked a lot cooler than I’d expected; he cut an amazing silhouette when they lit the stage up behind him red), and finally the most popular of all, Ruki, came out with his weird neck makeup thing that he does, and his hair crimped, wearing an inverted version of what Shou had worn the day before. And then, without any further ado, they started in on Filth in the Beauty (the only song I actually wanted to see). Now, The Gazette is loud, and their fans like to headbang, and I do not like to headbang, which presents a problem. I’d been very tempted to leave early, but had vowed to stay because I would never get another chance to see them live (I certainly wouldn’t go to a full concert), so I did stay, but about halfway through, when I was past ready to bug out, I glanced behind me to see hundreds upon hundreds of people and no way out. So I stayed. It wouldn’t have really been so bad except, I don’t really know any Gazette songs but three, and they only played one of those, and with everyone packed in like sardines, especially jumping around and slinging their hair around, it was hot. It was beyond hot. The entire two days I had been warm, but I hadn’t sweat. I was sweating. I mean, I was finally glad to be tall so that I could at least get some air. The Gazette was the only band that had people actually passing out. I mean, it was the same temperature as the bathroom is when you’ve taken a steamy shower, before you give up and open the door to let air in. For two hours. They played longer than anyone else, and they came back for an encore. On the upside, they were really good, and very kakkoii (cool) and Ruki was less grrr than I’d expected him to be. So anyways, after that we all filed out (at least it wasn’t raining this time), and as is usual in Japan, all along the walk back, the path was lined with guys giving out tissue packets and pamphlets (though different than usual was that they were all young guys in independent jrock bands giving out pamphlets for their bands. And then I got in the train with everyone else and made my way back home, exhausted. But it was so much fun! And though it's the wrong day, here's the comment part of Alice Nine's performance:

1 comment:

  1. There is nothing crazy about D's vocalist's red eyes, I think it suits his hairstyle.