UPUPGIRLS (KARI) Undergo Infinite Change and Evolution at Zepp Tokyo!
It was a sweltering midsummer evening in Odaiba as UPUPGIRLS (KARI) concluded their UPUPGIRLS (KARI)∞ Lives Change & Evolution tour with a dynamic performance at Zepp Tokyo on July 17, 2017.
With the graduation announcements of Minami Sengoku and Ayano Sato on April 28th and the formation of UPUPGIRLS (2) in February, the final tour of UPUPGIRLS (KARI) as a 7-member group was a turning point in their journey as a group that has always done things in their own way.
UPUPGIRLS (2) warmed up the audience with a cheerful performance of their debut song “Sun!x3”, showing confidence as they skipped and jumped around on the large stage. Sparkling in their new stage outfits, the rapid growth that the group had undergone in just a few short months was evident as the fans welcomed them with a rousing response.
Zepp Tokyo erupted with the glow of thousands of penlights and chants as the countdown hit zero and “overture (Kari)” boomed from the speakers. Stepping out onto the stage, UPUPGIRLS (KARI) dropped the needle on “Upper Disco”, getting the party started with UPUPGIRLS (2) dancing behind them. The feverish and funky mood persisted as they popped and locked to the rubbery slap bass and choppy guitar chording of a disco remix of “UPPER ROCK”, the fans shouting and dancing along with them.
The performance shifted into overdrive as UPUPGIRLS (KARI) rolled along with “Marble Hero”, running and jumping around to the punchy synthesizer melodies as the fans bounced and sang along. Ayano Sato shouted to the audience to get more excited as the opening bell for “Uppercut!” rang out. Punching and weaving at a rapid pace, UPUPGIRLS (KARI) remained unfazed as they ran through the opening onslaught of songs. Removing their long vests, the members welcomed the fans in the venue and those watching on Nico Nama to the evening to loud cheers and applause.
Even though the humidity inside was already stifling, Konatsu Furukawa promised that UPUPGIRLS (KARI) would turn the heat up even more, leading into the next song “FLASH”, momentarily turning Zepp Tokyo into an EDM festival with it’s thickly layered synthesizers and rattling beats. What followed was a dramatically changed rock version of their ballad “Dateline” cranked up to 11 and a simmering downtempo rendition of “Summer Beam”.
Minami noted that true to the theme of the tour, UPUPGIRLS (KARI) had taken on the challenge of evolving several of their songs. Adding that she had recently grown 1.5cm taller according to her health checkup a few months prior, she jokingly shared that she thought she would be another 10cm by the end of the tour. Azusa Sekine chimed in with the results of her diet declaration, proclaiming that she had lost 3.2kg and vowed to continue until the end of the year.
Putting on their sunglasses, UPUPGIRLS (KARI) jumped back into the performance with full strength with “Party People Alien”, transforming the audience into a gyrating mass of dancing extraterrestrials.
The momentum continued to build with “Jumper!” and “Bare Bare I LOVE YOU”, the floor shaking with the force of over 2,000 bodies taking flight along with the members of UPUPGIRLS (KARI). Shifting back to the harder end of their catalogue, the members took aim with their finger guns, blasting through “Onegai Miwaku no Target” and swinging their arms fiercely to “Kira Kira Mirai”. A rainbow spectrum covered the stage as UPUPGIRLS (KARI) chased any possibility of a summer squall as they flashed peace signs during “Seven☆Peace”. The answer to Konatsu’s question “Are you crazy?” came back with an undeniably strong affirmative as the concert roared closer to its end with “Upper Ray”, the audience reaching fever pitch in their attempts to keep pace with UPUPGIRLS (KARI).
Right as the song was about to end, the music cut out and the members broke into an acapella performance of “FOREVER YOUNG”, their voices joined by the audience. The feelings of unity within Zepp Tokyo lingered as UPUPGIRLS (2) returned to cross the finish line with their senpai as they sang together before taking their bows and leaving the stage.
The encore began with requests from the audience being taken on what songs they wanted to see performed. Settling on “ENJOY!! ENJO(Y)!!” and “Kimi toiu Kasetsu”, UPUPGIRLS (KARI) pulled Zepp Tokyo together again in a mass of dancing bodies and singing voices.
Returning for a double encore wearing T-shirts in their member colors, UPUPGIRLS (KARI) thanked the fans for calling them back to the stage. Konatsu commented that they had put a lot of thought into making the tour as enjoyable as possible. It was announced that Minami Sengoku and Ayano Sato’s last live with the group would be held at Zepp Tokyo on September 15th. Ayano shared that she felt the past 7 years had been full of good times as well as bad but hoped that she would be able to make a lot more memories in the 2 months she had left, especially with all the summer festivals approaching, a sentiment shared by Minami. Akari added that September 15th would also be a new beginning, leading into the first performance of the new song “Way of Our Life” from their upcoming 4th album “4th Album (Kari)” (release date: August 29). Raising their hands high, UPUPGIRLS (KARI) brought down the curtain on their final tour as a 7-member group.
UPUPGIRLS (KARI) have undergone many changes and evolutions since their debut in 2010. The graduations of Ayano Sato and Minami Sengoku are a first for the group, a rarity in a Japanese idol scene full of constant change. While the future beyond September 15th is yet unknown, UPUPGIRLS (KARI) have established a reputation for exceeding expectations throughout their history and it is likely that they will continue to do so in their own way.
00 overture (Kari)
01 Upper Disco
02 UPPER ROCK (DISCO version)
03 Marble Hero
06 Dateline (Rock version)
07 Summer Beam (Mellow version)
08 Party People Alien
10 Bare Bare I LOVE YOU
11 Onegai Miwaku no Target
12 Kira Kira Mirai
14 Upper Ray
15 FOREVER YOUNG
E1 ENJOY!! ENJO(Y)!!
E2 Kimi toiu Kasetsu
W1 Way of Our Life
UPUPGIRLS (KARI) “Kore ga Watashitachi no Ikiru Michi〜Way of Our Life〜”
September 15, 2017 (Friday)
Open – 6:00pm Start – 6:30pm
UPUPGIRLS (KARI) Official site: http://www.upupgirlskakkokari.com/
UPUPGIRLS (KARI) Official Twitter: https://twitter.com/uugirlsofficial
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UPUPGIRLS (KARI) YouTube channel: https://www.youtube.com/user/upupgirlsofficial
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