Live Report Exclusive

Angelo "CONNECTED NEW CIRCLES"

11/02/2022 2022-02-11 01:00:00 JaME Author: AMAZE Copyeditor: Ruchesko

Angelo "CONNECTED NEW CIRCLES"

Before Angelo went on an indefinite hiatus, they held two final concerts at the Yoyogi 2nd Gymnasium on January 15th and 16th.


© blowgrow inc.2022

Last fall, Angelo unexpectedly announced they would be going on indefinite hiatus. Beforehand, they released their thirteenth album CIRCLE - which vocalist Kirito has declared to be the band's best - embarked on a tour, and finally played their last two concerts at the packed-out Yoyogi 2nd Gymnasium in mid-January. Both concerts were streamed worldwide, and proved to be two of the most spectacular performances of Angelo’s 15-year career.

The first show on January 15th started with three fan-favorites from some of the band's earlier releases: MONOLOGUE BY MEPHISTO, evolve and HYBRID CENTURY. It was a little strange to see an audience of thousands (albeit socially distanced and wearing masks) watching the show, especially with restrictions still in place in other countries. The start of the second day was slightly bland by comparison due to the songs selected, but HYBRID CENTURY was just as compelling. Kirito seemed to be in good spirits from the very start. He flirted with the audience, winking and licking his lips. Next up was NEW CENTURY BIRTH VOICE, which is always great when played live. Both Christian and non-Christian images were shown on the stage's screen while bright laser-like lights shifted from red to blue.

The set lists for both days included songs from Angelo’s aforemnentioned new album, CIRCLE. One might have expected to hear the whole album but instead, only half the tracks were featured. The opening track COUNTDOWN boasts some outstanding guitar work, and guitarists Karyu and Giru were both headbanging during the song. Meanwhile, the audience took it easy. This has been a familiar sight over the years: new songs don’t drive the crowd as wild as the older numbers. Despite being a new song, VOICE may sound like fans have heard it many times before. According to Kirito, the song tells of a voice that has guided him in various choices over the years.

SUICIDE GAME, one of the best songs from the new album, really came to life when played live. The atmosphere on the stage and in the arena could surely be felt, even by audiences at home. On both days, SUICIDE GAME was followed by Gaia with the same kind of ballistic guitar. The audience headbanged away, just as Karyu and Giru were doing at the front of the stage. The screen resembled a rippling barcode jungle that couldn’t be looked at too for long without causing nausea. When talking about Gaia, one must mention the beautiful chorus and impressive C-part, both of which make it another of CIRCLE's standout songs.

SIGHT, the first song composed for CIRCLE, was played on both days. Kirito wrote the song after it was decided the album would be Angelo’s last. The meaning behind the song is that the death of one thing is always a beginning for something new. Kirito has said SIGHT is packed with both the sorrow from the decision of quitting and the joy of the band's journey together. Understandably, the singer seemed emotional, pointing to his heart several times throughout the song.

On the second day, SIGHT was followed by another ballad, Hikari no kioku, one of Angelo's older songs. The screen displayed a beautiful sky full of stars while Kirito - the main star of the moment - gave an intense, shiver-inducing rendition of the ballad. It was one of the most memorable moments from either concert. This was followed by DEEP VISION, in which Kirito sang from the bottom of his heart and Karyu turned his back to audience for his guitar solo.

The first half of the first day ended with FIELD OF GOD. Bassist Kohta was on Karyu’s side of the stage when Kirito came over and put his arm on Kohta’s shoulders. Kohta smiled broadly and Kirito seemed cheerful, too. The moment might have been the loveliest of the whole weekend. It brought to mind something the singer said before, that instead of being sad, he hoped everybody would keep smiles on their faces until the end.

Angelo ended the second day's main set with RIP, FAITH and Daybreakers. As RIP started with the explosive guitars, Kirito smashed his mic stand on the floor. During the C-part, he, Karyu and Giru headbanged together while the audience did, too. Kirito later hugged both Kohta and Giru, stroking both of their hair. Daybreakers has been a mainstay of the band's set list for many years. Fans always look forward to it and once again, it didn't disappoint.

On both days, Angelo kept their fans waiting a long time for the encores, not that the audience stopped applauding for even a second. Even though the first day’s encore included Voice of the cradle, Haru no Kaze and Mukui no Niji, the second day's was the more memorable. Starting with Beginning, it was when it really hit home that this was Angelo’s last concert.

The penultimate song on the second day was Script error: a perfect live song. The audience headbanged and clapped to the beat. The stage was filled with heavy smoke and blue numbers cascaded down the screen. The whole weekend was crowned with the last song SEE YOU AGAIN. It gave hope of a reunion, even though Kirito has not been promising a bright future for Angelo in interviews. The singer went and hugged Takeo sitting behind the drums. Many in the audience were wiping away tears during the song, just like many of those watching at home surely were.

At the end of the concert, all five members gathered at the front of the stage to bow together for the last time. Kirito said that from now on, each member will choose their own path. He asked fans to support all of them on their journeys. Karyu gave thanks for "being able to be a part of the best band in the world and to meet the best fans". He promised to be back. Kirito said that the ending point of a circle is not the end but a beginning for the next round. For him, the day was a new beginning for Angelo and its fans.

Set lists

January 15th

01. MONOLOGUE BY MEPHISTO
02. evolve
03. HYBRID CENTURY
04. COUNTDOWN
05. VOICE
06. SUICIDE GAME
07. Gaia
08. SIGHT
09. Rasen
10. BUTTERFLY EFFECT
11. CRUELWORLD
12. The Crime To Cradle
13. ORIGIN SPECIES OF ALPHA
14. Kyoujin
15. PERFECT PLAN
16. PANDEMIC
17. OUTBREAK
18. FIELD OF GOD
19. Voice of the cradle
20. Haru no Kaze
21. Mukui no Niji
22. Souzou no Rakuen
23. STOP THE TIME, YOU ARE BEAUTIFUL
24. Daybreakers

January 16th
01. Enter the NEOPHASE
02. VOICE
03. HYBRID CENTURY
04. NEW CENTURY BIRTH VOICE
05. SUICIDE GAME
06. Gaia
07. FIELD OF GOD
08. SIGHT
09. Hikari no Kioku
10. DEEP VISION
11. CRUELWORLD
12. The Crime to Cradle
13. My Strife
14. Pendulum Clock
15. SCENARIO
16. RIP
17. FAITH
18. Daybreakers
19. Beginning
20. A new story
21. Crave to you
22. PROGRAM
23. Synapse
24. Script error
25. SEE YOU AGAIN

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