Unforgettable Tour Finale
The tour final at Shibuya O-nest was a massive success:1. it was sold out (and we managed to sneak a few more people in: shout outs to Amit, Jack and Merv from Australia! and John and Dan from Texas)
2. all 5 bands KILLED IT!
- OWARIKARA opened with a blistering, LOUD, soulfully funk-filled, high-energy set. Kameda and Taka Hyouri went nuts on stage as they always do and Tuda was badass on bass with the hilarious choreography during "ドアたち" The Aussies commented on how incredibly tight and powerful Kenta's drumming was and were throughly impressed by the band's showmanship. quote: "The keyboardist is FUCKING LEGEND!"
- Kulu Kulu Garden sounded better than ever. The crowd fell in love with Kotone. Massive approval from the folks from down under.
- グーミ... oh shit! They were awesome before the tour started but have REALLY progressed to become spectacular stage performers. Touring with Owarikara and mothercoat helped them come out of their shell a bit but Ryogo now performs like a man posessed after the "scare" in Toronto. Some of you probably aren't aware but Ryogo was actually electrocuted during the Rivoli show in Toronto. It was a minor shock and he ended up being completely fine but it was a frightening event that had profound impact on Ryogo. Ryogo and goomi now perform each show like it could be their last performance and their set is marked with unbridled passion and energy. Quote from the Aussie, Amit: "I jizzed my pants!" Amit actually wanted me to translate his quote and let Ryogo know how much he lived their set. That was an awkward and hilarious verbal exchange.
- andymori were the reason 70-80% of the attendees came and they tore shit up! They opened with a powerful new song entitled "Weapons of Mass Destruction." The band plays much louder, faster and more emphatically on stage than they do on studio recordings. Hiroki's drumming alone is worth the price of admission with his Inozawa Chainsaw-esque ferocity. The entire front 2 rows consisted of girls wearing andymori t-shirts who came to see their favorite band. They staked their territory right from the beginning of the show 3 bands earlier without moving so as not to lose their spots. That's dedication. I used to do the same type shit when I'd go see Chatmonchy and Midori, hahaha. Though I never wore band t-shirts to a show. I was away from the aussies and never got their impression, but andymori put on a kickass set with the greatest amount of fanfare to that point..
- mothercoat came on last and after their set everyone in the club "jizzed their pants" Members of goomi, owarikara, andymori and KKG all moved up towards the front to jump, dance and go crazy during mothercoat's set. Surprisingly, the diehard andymori fans also stayed upfront and went nuts for mothercoat. The show ended with a BANG. Mothercoat blew the Australians' collective minds as well as everyone else in the club.
3. The crowd cheered for an encore by mothercoat. Giga coerced me to get on stage and give a speech. I was reluctant and started off by saying how shitty I am at speaking Japanese and giving speeches but managed to pull some rather profound words out my ass that moved the crowd. I surprised myself in fact. Essentially, I talked about my reasons for doing the tour and how I truly believe Japan has the best music scene in the world (Nicolas: I used the term "sekai-ichi" !! hahaha. Sorry. Inside joke.)
The crowd expected mothercoat to play a song, but instead all 18 members from all 5 bands came on stage and did a rendition of Owarikara's "Sunaba." I ended up on stage near the end as well. It was a truly memorable song because, after Ryogo's accident during the show in Toronto we had to cancel the rest of the show at the Rivoli but we decided that Owarikara would give an acoustic performance on the dancefloor. Everyone ended up helping Owarikara with their performance at the Rivoli. The encore at O-nest re-created the sheer awesomeness of the camaraderie and emotion of the Rivoli performance. Needless to say the crowd was incredibly moved by the encore. At the very end, we introduced all 18 band members and they each gave me a hug after each introduction. And then we did a group bow. Yeah, it was fucking sappy but it was a sublime ending to a truly magnificent show.
So many people came up to me and told me how much they loved the show. The great part is that the majority of the crowd who came specifically to watch andymori fell in love with all 4 of the other bands.
4. I almost forgot, but Kulu Kulu Garden/FAR FRANCE drummer Takahashi Kyohei aka Tonjiru cooked a huge batch of tonjiru (pork miso soup) for the audience that was seriously the best tonjiru I've ever had.
5. andymori and Owarikara had brought their own professional photographers to Canada for the tour and the beautiful photos they took were used to decorate the walls at O-nest.
6. an AWESOME fan who came all the way from Osaka for the show painted the following cute and beautiful watercolor print:
7. after the show we held an uchiage, staying at O-nest till about 230am and then we went for tonkotsu ramen (pic later) and then we moved to an izakaya to drink, eat and drink some more until the trains started running again at 5am. Both Goomi and Owarikara had gigs the following night! In fact goomi stayed up all night with us and then had to drive to Yokohama and perform without sleeping or showering. Though I'm sure they crashed at the livehouse for a bit before they did their show.
Thanks to everyone who came to the tour finale at O-nest! and to everyone who came to the shows in Canada. I lost a shitload of money despite the great turnouts but I plan on continuing with these tours. The next one will be in October (holy shit! way too soon. Oh well). I'll add some videos to this blog post later.