Stylish Wave Matrix Live Report

live report - 04.01.2008 23:00

Live report from the Stylish Wave Matrix event, featuring bands such as Ayabie, Charlotte, DuelJewel and more.

The Stylish Wave Matrix event took place at Shibuya AX, a pretty nice concert hall with a wide stage and a gallery. The event was sold out and the audience was made up of mostly young people, some in cosplay or lolita dresses. After a quick tour around the merchandise stand, fans quickly hurried to their places, as music played over the speakers.

After a short introduction of the bands playing that evening, a moment or two passed as the fans excitedly cheered before the live hall darkened and music began to play over the speakers; it was time for the first band of the night: Lolita 23q.

They entered the stage clad in typical visual kei gear. The bassist, Ryosuke, even sported really short shorts and a bare midriff. The vocalist, Sou, was wearing something frilly, glittery and asymmetrical in white, black and silver. They started their set with Mikansei Sapphire, which turned out to be a catchy rock song that was pretty easy on the ears. Their next song, Carnival of Julia, had a more electronic feel to it and it made the the audience dance. They were already in a good mood and waving their arms along to the music, dancing and singing as Sou encouraged them to go wild. Their last song was Super Nova, which had hard drums and like all the other songs, a short but sweet guitar solo. The band was interacting with the audience and they sent the energy through the roof as they danced and crouched down to reach the hands of the audience.

Next up was DuelJewel, who seemed to have evolved a lot over the last few years and came out looking very hardcore in combat-inspired outerwear in black, brown and dark green with some glitter details. Their hair, however, which was done very nicely, resembled the typical spiked look that seems to be so popular in Japan nowadays. Their first song was BULLET STAR, which sounded like pop with some rap thrown in, but the mood changed quickly as the rest of their set was much harder and they growled and headbanged. The lights blinked frantically and all the while they delivered with outstanding energy, and ultimately they received a pretty good response from the audience. They interacted well with the fans as they prowled and thrashed around on stage, and the bassist squirted water at people, to their delight. At the end they just threw their instruments aside and walked off, throwing water bottles and plectrums on the way. They left the fans energetic and hungry for more.

Charlotte came on dressed in matching outfits: white frilly shirts under black suits with black ties with tartan type scarves wrapped around their waists - all of them red except for Ruka's, whose was purple - ankle-high white creepers and glitter make-up. It seemed like they had gone for the typical school-uniform look and changed the style to suit them. They did not only look very good, but they sounded as great as they do on their CDs.

Their sound was pop and cute, quite the contrast from the previous band. They started with Diamond Busaiko, which was a happy song that made the audience jump and wave in unison, then continued on with the ballad, Miharashi-ga-oka. This song left the audience still as they closely payed attention to the band and their actions on the stage. The third song, Char we dance, was back to a happy style, but with screaming guitars and a heavy bass-line. The audience clapped along to the music while Kazuno started pulling out random stuff from a tiny gymnastics buck he kept at the front of the stage. He started with a doll's head, and then a stuffed elephant which he charmingly positioned at his crotch. During Char we dance, everyone was headbanging and the doll head joined in as well. The audience seemed to have specific movements to this song and they all acted in unison as the vocalist proceeded to pull out panties from his buck and wave them around. The band generally danced around a lot and were quite energetic and fun.

Jinkaku Radio came on and showed their respect to the fans by bowing to the audience during their intro. They looked very formal but stylish in their regular suits and huge platform shoes. Their set started with the song Kurai Haru, which switched between noisy guitar and high pitched chilling vocals. Yuuki's seductive vocals and Naoki's awesome bass riffs turned this song into a memorable experience. The audience was completely still during this and the second song, Milk, where one could not avoid being touched by the power of the song. It felt like everyone was taken away from this world and into another which Jinkaku Radio created. The mood livened up for Oningyo san, where Yuuki started throwing rag dolls around, hitting the audience with them and throwing them at the other band members. This silliness was obviously very enjoyable for the fans as they all started giggling and laughing while Yuuki and Naoki were being goofy as usual.

During his MC, Yuuki did funny impressions of other visual kei vocalists, slouching over his mic-stand and talking in a deep voice. His antics on stage were really cute and funny, and the band put on a good show all around. While their outro played, they bowed to the audience again before leaving the stage with a huge cheer from their fans.

Ayabie got on stage and got the loudest response so far. They were also all dressed somewhat the same in individual variations of tartan and black suits. Their drum-set charmingly said "whatever the fuck I want" and they seemed to be the audience favorites at this point. As the music started playing, everyone was continuously waving their arms around to the happy sounding music. Masquerade had special dance moves that were shown by vocalist Aoi, and the audience happily followed his lead. This, of course, put a smile on his face and gave the fans even more reason to dance and show him and the rest of the band how much they were appreciated. When they played their last song, Cubic' L/Rock, everyone jumped so much that it felt like the whole concert hall was shaking. Ayabie's music is happy and bouncy and seems to be very popular; they left the audience elated and happy to wait for the final act.

Penicillin with Ni~ya came on to much cheering from the audience. Hakuei was dressed in typical visual kei style as always in short shorts and tall boots, his hair messy like a bird's nest and partly dyed blonde. O-jiro was in a punk looking suit; Chisato's look was more metal inspired with his pointy guitar and ragged knit sweater, tight black pants with lots of zippers and chunky boots. Ni~ya looked a little more plain with a vaguely colorful shirt under a jacket and black pants tucked into boots.

The audience was still on a high and was headbanging and dancing, so when Kyūjūkyūban me no Yoru started they went completely nuts. Later everyone was treated to a cover of Nightmare's the WORLD, which was received with much delight. Penicillin with Ni~ya's version was far from bad, and Hakuei's voice brought a new, more rocked and rough sound to the song.

Hakuei was behaving just as always, prancing around the stage like he owned it, and Ni~ya seemed to fit in with the band; he had mastered the Penicillin songs well. He even mimicked Gisho's wide-legged stances and twirls. Hakuei seemed happy with him and even gave him a hug during their last song, NEW FUTURE. They left the stage but soon came back for an encore and sang Romance, to much excitement from the audience. Hakuei also let the audience sing the refrain and the mood was impeccable.

After a short break, all the bands came back and lined up. They bowed, thanked the audience and left the stage one by one as it went dark and the venue lights came on, signaling the end of the event. The whole concert was totally amazing and left the fans satisfied and happy. All these bands left a huge impression on everyone and there's no doubt we all look forward to seeing them on stage again!


Set list

Lolita 23q
Introduction
1. Mikansei Sapphire
2. Carnival of Julia
3. Super Nova

DuelJewel
Introduction
1. BULLET STAR
MC
2. out sider
3. NIGHT WALKER
4. Trust

Charlotte
1. Diamond Busaiku
MC
2. Miharashi-ga-oka
3. Char we dance?
4. Kampaku Sengen!?

Jinkaku Radio
Introduction
1. Kurai Haru
2. Milk
MC
3. Oningyōsan
4. Oboro-zuki
5. Hōkai shita machi Shihai sarenai basho
Ending

ayabie
Introduction
1. Day Dream
2. Kirisame
3. masquerade
MC
4. Yubisaki
5. Cubic' L/Rock

PENICILLIN with Ni~ya
Introduction
1. FOR BEAUTIFUL MAD HUMAN LIFE
2. Kyūjūkyūban me no Yoru
3. CRASH
MC
4. the WORLD
5. NEW FUTURE
6. Romance (encore)
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