hide Memorial Summit Day 2 - Part C

live report - 05.11.2008 08:00

The long awaited highlight of the hide Memorial Summit was the final section, which included LUNA SEA, X JAPAN, and Muteki Band.

LUNA SEA

Considerably more people had arrived when it was time for LUNA SEA, and the entire audience was clapping in anticipation for their performance. As the curtain raised, the stadium erupted with screams of joy as everyone in attendance clapped along to the intro while the members entered the stage one by one.

The performance started with a bang as the band kicked off with PRECIOUS. The audience waved their arms happily and sang along to the familiar music while Ryuichi swirled around on stage, showing his happiness to be performing. The next song was G and the audience were still waving their arms continuously towards the stage in unison. Dejavu was clearly a favorite and everyone sang along, alternating between jumping, head banging and waving their arms around to the music. The band interacted with each other playfully and seemed to be enjoying this just as much as the audience was.

During SLAVE each member was shown on the screen and the audience screamed out their names happily, clearly excited about another reunion of this legendary band. LUNA SEA also did a hide cover and the audience went wild again as they played SCANNER. There was a small pause before they continued with the softer, emotional IN SILENCE, which had the audience stretching their arms longingly towards the stage during the chorus. INORAN was now on acoustic guitar while SUGIZO and Ryuichi sang together, urging the audience to join in with them. Ryuichi screamed "blue transparency" before the song began and everyone cheered while the band ran along the wide stage, making sure all in the audience got a glimpse of them. ROSIER was, as always, an audience favorite and the crowd went wild waving their arms frantically and screaming along to "rosy heart." Ryuichi had the audience cheering and throwing their arms in the air, which only further increased during J's monologue in the song.

TONIGHT was another audience hit as all danced along to the bright tune. As they continued with WISH, glitter was shot out over the audience from cannons located on stage. After catching the sparkling pieces of plastic the audience waved them around in unison, creating a sea of moving sparkles. Ryuichi allowed the audience to sing parts of the song and they screamed as loud as they could in appreciation, while SUGIZO dashed around the stage at full speed.

After the song Ryuichi spoke for a while before the set ended with the ballad UP TO YOU, during which the audience waved their arms calmly along to the music. The band members all threw water bottles and drumsticks into the crowd and waved happily as they left the stage. Everyone in the stadium seemed to have truly enjoyed the performance and loved seeing LUNA SEA so glad to be performing together again.

Setlist:

1. PRECIOUS
2. G.
3. Dejavu
4. SLAVE
5. SCANNER (hide cover)
6. IN SILENCE
7. BLUE TRANSPERANCY
8. ROSIER
9. TONIGHT
10. WISH
11. UP TO YOU


X JAPAN

The X performance was approximately three hours long with all the encores.

When the letter X appeared on the screen the empty seats filled up in a matter of seconds and a storm of screams filled the stadium. While Amethyst played over the speakers, the fans screamed the names of their favorite members, especially HIDE's. After the intro with a feminine voice introducing X, the curtain opened and Prologue ~world anthem~ began. YOSHIKI appeared wearing a red shirt followed by HEATH, PATA and TOSHI, while in HIDE's usual spot the famous "Yellow Heart" guitar was on display. Rusty Nail began and pyrotechnics filled the stage and even after LUNA SEA's performance, no one seemed tired; in fact, the audience was in ecstasy. With his unique high voice TOSHI screamed, asking the audience to show their Japanese spirit. Then Scars began, with more fire shooting in time to the music as HIDE images appeared on the screen for the twin guitar solo with PATA. TOSHI asked the arena to scream louder, which they did and a riled up YOSHIKI kicked the gong beside his drum set before heading over to the piano to play the intro to Silent Jealousy. As TOSHI began singing a capella, YOSHIKI returned to the drums to thrash his kit.

After Silent Jealousy, the screen began to play a video in hide's memory. With Forever Love playing in the background the first video showed an interview with Shouji Noriko right after the Last Live. In the second video, HIDE was speaking to the host, Ikushima Hiroshi, about X. In the third video, HIDE was talking with TOSHI about how he first met YOSHIKI. HIDE said he'd always heard YOSHIKI had a reputation for being very destructive but when he met him, he thought he was a really cute kid. With Tears now playing over the speakers, a film gig video began with TOSHI looking for HIDE, then PATA, HEATH and finally YOSHIKI. Another interview with hide was followed by the famous HEY HEY HEY interview where HIDE and YOSHIKI argue about their eating habits. There was one more interview with HIDE explaining the difference between being in X and his solo career. For the conclusion, the video returned to the first interview with Shouji Noriko leaving many people in the audience in tears. Along with the series of covers that had been played throughout the afternoon in memory of the great guitarist, this poignant memorial during X JAPAN's set gave the evening a real sense of gravitas and set the festivities of the music in the wider context of the event.

While classical music played, YOSHIKI appeared with two bouquets of red roses. Descending from the stage he walked around throwing roses to each side of the arena. Then he returned to the stage, took his seat by the piano and began to pray. He began with some improvisational playing, then started a little piano solo followed by Without you. Many of HIDE’s pictures were shown on the screen and then TOSHI appeared from the darkness. As he started to sing the already tearful audience became even more emotional.

When Without you finished, YOSHIKI began to play Kurenai on the piano, then headed over to the drums, while on the screen HIDE was shown playing his solo with the same clothes he wore at the Last Live. A sea of silver ribbons were thrown all over the arena and even the people crying then started once again to jump, scream, and raise their arms, taking their cues from the music. At the end of the song, TOSHI's voice cracked a bit as he said his goodbyes to the audience.

During the break, the audience made a human wave that spread across the whole arena, over and over. Suddenly someone appeared on the stage holding a flag with "Muteki" written on it. YOSHIKI reappeared on stage carrying TOSHI on his back and after a quick spin round, both sat on the floor. TOSHI remarked that everything had been really nice so far, and YOSHIKI inquired if he'd gotten any fatter. At that point YOSHIKI announced that the date of a new concert had been been decided. He went on to say he wanted to do a concert in Japan as well, in Tokyo Dome, but due to some problems that occurred in the past, he was afraid they wouldn't let him play again there. He continued, saying it was best to leave Tokyo Dome in the past and go now to Osaka Dome. YOSHIKI then announced the concert that had been decided wouldn't occur in Japan but in Taiwan, on August 2nd.

YOSHIKI then headed over to the piano and began to play the chorus of Dahlia, and from Dahlia he proceeded on to Endless rain. TOSHI sang at YOSHIKI's side, while images of HIDE were shown on the screen. By now the whole arena was singing Endless rain along with TOSHI. The band went quiet for a few minutes, all members sat watching and listening attentively to the audience singing the chorus over and over to them. As Endless rain drew to a close, YOSHIKI started to play the introduction to I.V.. At that moment TOSHI called SUGIZO back on stage, and asked that everyone sing the refrain "in the rain... find a way." TOSHI complained that HEATH and PATA weren't singing along with them and moreover that YOSHIKI would not return until the crowd sang in one loud voice. YOSHIKI left his drums for a period to sit at the front of the stage, pausing to tease SUGIZO gently for while with TOSHI asking why a member of LUNA SEA was suddenly on stage. The chorus continued for some time until YOSHIKI went to the drums and the band began to play the song in earnest.

Setlist:

SE Amethyst and ~world anthem~
1. Rusty Nail
2. Scars
3. Silent Jealousy
4. Without you
5. Kurenai
6. Endless rain
7. I.V. (guest sugizo)


Muteki Band

After I.V. ended YOSHIKI, wearing a lace shirt from h.naoto, kicked the gong once more and returned to his piano to play a sample of Pink Spider. One of the staff members brought him HIDE's heart-covered guitar, causing a great wave excitement amongst the audience. TOSHI then called Shinya from LUNA SEA to play with them, so together with SUGIZO, YOSHIKI and PATA playing guitar, HEATH on the bass, and Shinya drumming away, he sang Pink Spider. The audience went crazy with various fans waving HIDE dolls in the air. It was an interesting performance; while fitting for X JAPAN to have played this song in tribute to HIDE it was interesting for the change in attitude to the original and the rougher rock sound that X JAPAN brought to the classic pop sound. It was, nonetheless, a memorable performance and with the reappearance of the famous red-heart 'Love me' guitar HIDE's presence hadn't felt stronger all evening.

After Pink Spider ended, YOSHIKI called Ryuichi from LUNA SEA while TOSHI called INORAN and J back to the stage. With all of LUNA SEA back on the stage, Ryuichi asked YOSHIKI to play the drums for one of the songs. After Shinya grabbed a guitar, Ryuichi and TOSHI sang Believe together with PATA, INORAN, SUGIZO and Shinya on the guitar. HEATH and J were on the bass while YOSHIKI pounded away on the drums.

The show would soon be coming to an end, and Ryuichi remarked to TOSHI and YOSHIKI that everything was perfect. While YOSHIKI was at the drums and Shinya played a tambourine, TOSHI invited to the stage Tatsuro from MUCC, Hizumi from D'espairsRay, and Nishikawa Takanori from T.M.Revolution. Band members from LADIES ROOM, Versailles, Oblivion Dust, Spread Beaver and the others members of D'espairsRay and MUCC showed up on the stage, some holding the "Muteki" flag while others appeared on the stage jumping and screaming.

The one who started to sing X was Ryuichi, followed by Tatsuro and then Nishikawa. The refrain for X was replayed many times so HIZUMI and TOSHI could sing as well. Playing the guitar there was Miya from MUCC, SUGIZO, INORAN, PATA and YOSHIKI, now playing with the black guitar and red rose symbol. Shinya was on drums while J and HEATH played bass. The whole arena was doing the X jump and the stage was full of people playing, singing and jumping. It was truly a unique and incredible sight, and it seemed nothing could surpass Muteki Band, the invincible band.

Towards the end of the show while Say Anything was playing, YOSHIKI threw the black drumsticks inscribed with his name into the crowd. YOSHIKI also handed a big HIDE plushie (a little over a meter tall) to PATA, who then gave it to TOSHI. YOSHIKI brought to the center of the stage the plushie of TOSHI while PATA brought out HEATH's. One of the staff then brought out PATA's plushie and YOSHIKI arranged the five in the center of the stage. HEATH, YOSHIKI, TOSHI and PATA bent the plushies over repeatedly as though they were bowing and thanking everyone for the concert. For a moment, HEATH stood bouncing his plushie up and down while PATA's fell face down onto the stage. Seeing this, PATA who was holding onto YOSHIKI's plush let this doll fall too, much to the amusement of the audience. Eventually they let each plushie fall and set them to lie side by side at the front of the stage as the memorial came to a close, while behind, the words "X JAPAN" illuminated in yellow shone on the screens at the back of the stage.

Setlist:

8. Pink Spider (guest Sugizo, Shinya)
9. Believe (LUNA SEA with X JAPAN)
10. X (with LUNA SEA, T.M.Revolution, MUCC, D'espairsRay and others)

The Memorial Summit was an incredible event of live music and a fitting tribute to hide, bringing together fans new and old and a variety of musicians either directly linked with or inspired by hide. Nowhere was this more evident than in the Muteki Band whose vividly memorable performance created an unsurpassable finale. The Memorial was a rollercoaster of emotions for the fans, with tears during the poignant memorial videos to sheer elation during the final performance of X and hide's presence could be felt throughout the event, in the small tributes from the bands who played, in the covers and finally in the magical set that X JAPAN played with such passion to remember the life of hide so fondly.
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