BAND-MAID Serve Up Ebisu LIQUIDROOM! Announce 2nd Japan Tour and World Tour for Autumn/Winter 2017!
Photo by masanori fujikawa
BAND-MAID capped off their overwhelmingly successful sold out First One-Man Okyūji Tour 2017 with a groundbreaking “serving” (live performance) at Ebisu LIQUIDROOM on June 15, 2017!
The second of 2 nights at one of Tokyo’s revered live houses (the June 14th date was added shortly after the June 15th finale sold out) saw “masters” and “princesses” (fans) gathering in eager anticipation as the minutes to show time ticked down, the guitar stylings of Carlos Santana (Kanami’s favorite guitarist) setting the mood for what was to transpire. The lights dimmed and hundreds of hands clapped along to BAND-MAID’s intro music as the members took to the stage under the cover of CO2 fog, red shards of light reflecting off of a mirror ball and green lasers spelling out “BAND-MAID”.
With a simple “okyūji hajimemasu” (the serving will begin) from Saiki, BAND-MAID threw open the doors on the evening with “Don’t you tell ME”, green lasers slicing through the blood red stage lights Saiki and Miku’s vocals hanging tensely above the crushing rhythms of Misa’s bass and Akane’s drums and Kanami’s jagged guitar lines. Saiki shouted for the audience to make some noise as BAND-MAID turned up the intensity, slashing their way through “REAL EXISTENCE”. Kanami’s fingers flew along the fretboard as she tapped out the spidery opening riff of “Unfair game”, crawling between Misa’s tightly wound bass lines and Akane’s punchy drum beats as Saiki pumped her fist along with the “masters” and “princesses”. The opening barrage roared to a close with “Take me higher!!”, Misa and Kanami trading off solos as Akane unleashed a series of rapid-fire drum blasts.
Miku welcomed the “masters” and “princesses” to Ebisu LIQUIDROOM with her trademark “-ppo” pigeon language (her family name Kobato translates to “small pigeon”) and thanked them for coming to the tour finale as Kanami switched to a blue PRS. The aggressive tone of the performance resumed shortly as BAND-MAID jumped back in with “decided by myself”. Akane’s drums hammering along with Misa’s bass and Kanami’s guitar with Miku and Saiki’s vocal harmonies cutting their way through the middle of the mix. The air conditioning in Ebisu LIQUIDROOM switched on to combat the soaring temperatures while Miku switched over to another Zemaitis before joining Saiki in unleashing the dual vocal attack of “CROSS” under the cover of deep purple and red stage lights. Kanami’s wicked wah pedal riffing of “LOOK AT ME” kept the “serving” moving along steadily, weaving its way through Saiki and Miku’s vocals as Misa and Akane kept the rhythm planted firmly. Grinding along through “matchless GUM”, Saiki’s vocals trailed off as if controlled by a kill switch shortly before Kanami threw her head back and ripped through her solo, the notes exploding from her fingers as white beams of light swirled around her.
Saiki left the stage while Miku asked for the “masters” and “princesses” to listen to a song full of feelings before starting to sing “TIME”, her voice full of emotion as the stage lit up in a warm orange glow and the audience clapped and waved their hands along. With the return of Saiki, BAND-MAID turned up the gain for “Puzzle”, Kanami’s guitar chugging along with Akane’s explosive drumming and Misa’s rumbling bass lines. Accelerating into “Moratorium” BAND-MAID shifted into overdrive, Misa slapping her bass and Saiki holding her microphone out as she called for the audience to sing along with them. Kanami switched back to her red PRS and Misa changed over to her Fender 4-string as Saiki’s voice pierced the humid air to begin BAND-MAID’s first live performance of “Daydreaming”. The mirror ball sparkled behind Kanami as the notes cascaded from the speakers during her solo.
Misa switched back to her 5-string bass to lock down the growling low end as BAND-MAID picked up the pace again with “YOLO”, the chandeliers above the stage lighting up while Miku and Saki sang forcefully. Increasing the voltage with the foot-stomping hard rock sounds of “FREEDOM”, Saiki shouted for the crowd to get louder as it was the tour finale, receiving a rousing response as they shouted and clapped along. Kanami stood at the edge of the stage, smiling big and tossing her head back as she ripped into her solo. The heat continued to rise as Kanami’s throaty wah-accented guitar quacked out the riff to “So, What?”, Miku’s twintails swaying as she strummed out the chords and Saiki’s vocals cut like a knife.
Miku unstrapped her guitar and addressed the “masters” and “princesses” once more, putting a finger to her lips to quiet them before starting to speak. She thanked them for making their first one-man tour an overwhelming success and welcomed Misa back from her absence due to the flu before triumphantly announcing that BAND-MAID would be embarking on their next one-man tour “Would you like to burn or Moe? Which one?” (The Japanese name of the tour “Moeruno? Moenaino? Docchi nano?” is a play on the homophones “moeru” – to burn and “moe”.) starting in September of 2017. As Kanami shook her fists in excitement, Miku added that there would be international dates to be added before revealing that the finale would take place at Shin-Kiba STUDIO COAST, their largest venue yet (capacity: 2,402 all-standing). Riding the wave of excitement, Miku lead the masters and princesses in a series of celebratory “moe moe kyun kyun” call and responses.
BAND-MAID roared into the final stretch of the evening, Kanami tossing her head back as she picked out the opening riff of “alone”; blue, green, and red beams of light sweeping over the churning mass of bodies in front of the stage as Miku and Saiki’s breathy vocals washed over them. Pulling the masters and princesses in closer, BAND-MAID whipped them into a frenzy, smashing into “Don’t let me down”, the floor a writhing mass of crowdsurfing, jumping, and headbanging bodies unable to break free from the control of the music. Taking advantage of the situation, Saiki called out for the audience to sing along with her, Miku joining in and leading the singalong for “you.”, looking out from the stage covered in a CO2 mist as green lasers and purple beams of light swept through the venue. With the end of the “serving” rapidly approaching, BAND-MAID dug in deeper, roaring into “the non-fiction days”, the temperature continuing to rise alongside the tempo and intensity of the song. Calmly announcing that the tour would conclude with the following song, Saiki was front and center as the crowd surged forward with their hands extended towards her and the rest of the band as they jumped into “secret My lips” headfirst. Akane’s drums and Misa’s bass set the pace for BAND-MAID’s last dance of the night, Saiki and Miku singing emotionally as Kanami’s barbed wire riffing laid a path of destruction, emphasized by an inescapable web of lasers. Thanking the masters and princesses one last time and throwing out their picks and drum sticks, BAND-MAID slammed the door shut on their historic first one-man live tour.
In less than half a year since their biggest “serving” at Akasaka BLITZ, BAND-MAID has exceeded expectations as they grow and evolve. With a second Japan tour and a second international tour in the works, there are more opportunities than ever to witness to one of Japan’s hardest rocking bands. Don’t let yourself down by missing out on seeing them!
Photos by masanori fujikawa and Miki Fujiwara
01 Don’t you tell ME
02 REAL EXISTENCE
03 Unfair game
04 Take me higher!!
05 decided by myself
07 LOOK AT ME
08 matchless GUM
15 So, What?
17 Don’t let me down
19 the non-fiction days
20 secret My lips
BAND-MAID Okyūji Tour Autumn-Winter 2017 “”Would you like to burn or Moe? Which one?”
September 24, 2017 (Sunday) – cube garden (Hokkaido)
September 29, 2017 (Friday) – B.9 V2 (Kumamoto)
October 1, 2017 (Sunday) – DRUM LOGOS (Fukuoka)
October 6, 2017 (Friday) – darwin (Miyagi)
October 8, 2017 (Sunday) – Kanazawa EIGHT HALL (Ishikawa)
October 13, 2017 (Friday) – Universe (Osaka)
October 15, 2017 (Sunday) – DIAMOND HALL (Aichi)
November 17, 2017 (Friday) – CRAZYMAMA KINGDOM (Okayama)
November 18, 2017 (Saturday) – Hiroshima CLUB QUATTRO (Hiroshima)
November 24, 2017 (Friday) – Shin-Kiba STUDIO COAST (Tokyo)
BAND-MAID Official site: http://bandmaid.tokyo/
BAND-MAID Official Twitter: https://twitter.com/bandmaid
BAND-MAID Official Facebook page: https://www.facebook.com/bandmaid
BAND-MAID YouTube channel: https://www.youtube.com/user/BANDMAID
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