Neo Universe 2013 Grateful BIRTH - NHK Hall Live - May 25th


On Saturday 5/25, the first day of the two day event, I met up with some friends from Twitter who I had previously gone with to Alfee Mania and ESP Craft House. I was so glad to see them again, and also meet new people! The Alfee fans that I have met so far are all such kind people, it makes me really happy.


The live hall was a huge concert hall called NHK Hall, which coincidentally enough was also having it's 40th year anniversary (which Takamiy mentioned on Sunday). I was on the third floor, row 12 on an aisle seat. Sadly, this seat was so far away I could barely see the members faces, which to me is important, especially when you are watching them perform songs. It's nice to see the emotion, don't you think? Also, I wasn't standing with anyone I knew, so I was a bit lonely and felt weird standing near so many people who honestly weren't very excitable. I'm used to louder, crowded shows where everyone has their fists in the air the whole time!!! 

The live started off with really dramatic music and lights flashing all over the stage. A door in the middle of the stage slid open like on a space ship, and there was THE ALFEE!!!! Everyone screamed and started clapping. Sakurai was in a brown suit, Sakazaki in a yellow suit, and Takamiy in a very shiny pink outfit that really glittered under the lights. They moved onto the stage and took their instruments and immediately started playing It's Alright, then went right into Hysteric Psychedelic ∞. I was really excited to hear this song, because it's one where you can really rock out!! The fourth song was Byaku-ya, a beautiful song that is one of my personal favorites, so I was glad to hear this one as well. 

After the first four songs, Sakazaki-san did a short MC, basically introducing the live and thanking everyone for coming. After three more songs, the three of them did an MC together (we were asked to sit and relax), during which time Sakurai and Takamiy had left the stage for a few minutes. Takamiy came back in a new outfit, this one shiny blue with a long, floor length vest coat. They talked mostly about the tour pamphlet and joked around with each other. After this, while everyone was still seated, they played slower songs. The performance of Moonlight Fairy was particularly dreamy with the light show that accompanied it!

Once the third song of that set ended, Takamiy did an MC, which went into a performance of one of the newest songs, Mou Ichido Koko Kara Hajimeyou. Actually, I was really, really overjoyed to see him perform Kono Ai wo Sasagete, which came three songs later. It is such a beautiful song and the lyrics are so powerful, I just wish I could have seen his face better while he sang.

Finally, they sang Final Wars! and everyone in the audience really got excited. Once the song ended, they bowed and left as though the concert was over, until everyone started chanting "ENCORE!" 

This time, they came out in different outfits. It seemed to me that Sakurai just took off his jacket. Sakazaki was wearing something a bit more casual (and maybe pink??), and Takamiy was in a more rocker looking outfit with black, green, and red colors all mixed together in the shiny fabric, along with a shirt that had a cross on it, and large black sunglasses. They really got the audience excited when Sakazaki took out a harmonica and they went into FUNKY PUNKY. 

After three songs, there was a little performance where they all showed off the tour goods. Sakurai came galloping out on a stick horse, dragging a large box and wearing an outfit that made him look like he'd come out of an old Western movie!! Sakazaki asked him in English, "Who are you?" Hahaha. Takamiy and Sakazaki kept poking at him, and each time they did, Tadasuke would make a doorbell sound on his keyboard, so Takamiy and Sakazaki pretended to play Ding Dong Ditch, lol! It was really cute! Takamiy poked Sakurai's nose and got a doorbell sound, then asked him to try it himself. When he did, there was a buzzer noise. When he pushed the horse, it neighed, haha. Apparently the horse was named Hiko-chan, after Takamiy! 

Anyway, they showed off the black tote bag, from which they pulled a large afro wig like Sakazaki's 80s hairstyle. After making him put it on (saying it was nostalgic), Takamiy tried it on, then put it over the hat Sakurai was wearing. Then, they talked about the smartphone/keitai straps (during which time they comically imitated the scrolling on a smart phone), and the snacks -- Veggiefee. Each member was given a vegetable character, and they'd made a song about it too, bringing out cute cartoon poster boards with the characters drawn on them as each was introduced. Tamazaki Neginosuke (an onion), Tomamizawa Tomahiko (a tomato), and Masaru Kabocha (pumpkin squash), lol. I don't remember the drummer's vegetable name, but Tadasuke became Cheesuke (cheese)… which… isn't a vegetable, haha. During some point of this performance, Takamiy started to kind of beat up on Sakurai, who looked at a little boy sitting in the front row with his mom and started asking him things like, "Can you believe this old man, hitting me like this?!" 

Once they were done with the Veggiefee song, they performed three more songs. Takamiy really got the crowed riled up with Zekkyou Jumping Groupie, asking everyone to yell "GOOD GOOD GOOD!" (the lyric being "Good Vibrations"). He would ask for different sorts of people to yell it, fans since high/middle/elementary school, girls, guys, first, second, and third floor, etc. After he was satisfied they finished the song and played -- Hoshizora no Distance!! It was really fun to hear this song live. 

Again, they bowed and went off stage, and everyone began to yell for an encore again. This time they came back, Takamiy in an all black outfit. They performed "The Boxer" by Simon and Garfunkle!! It was actually really cool to see Sakazaki AND Takamiy on acoustic, with Sakurai's lovely voice singing the song. 

After this, Takamiy did another MC, in which he thanked everyone for coming -- he even mentioned that people came from all over the world and how grateful he was for it… I think that only Carol from Taiwan and myself were there from far away!!! At the fan meeting last week, the lady who has been taking a lot of care of me as far as Alfee stuff goes submitted a question of what they think of having fans overseas now. So, he seemed to answered that. How sweet! 

Finally, he spoke of the fate that brought he, Sakazaki, and Sakurai together to form THE ALFEE and how unbelievable it was to be in their 40th year, and with those memories in mind, he'd created the song "Glorious", which was the last song they played -- a really, really lovely piece. 

Once the song was over, they all bowed -- left, right, and to the center -- and walked off the stage. It was a bit sad to see them go, but since it was a two day event, I couldn't feel too sad, because they would be there the next day~!


SET LIST (Courtesy of alfee-fan.net)

1. It's Alright
2. Hysteric Psychedelic ∞
3. 悲しき墓標
4. 白夜 -byaku-ya-
MC - Sakazaki
5. サファイアの瞳
6. SLOW DANCER
7. Black Doctor~I Love You
MC - all three
8. LOVE NEVER DIES
9. Moonlight Fairy
10. Another Way
MC - Takamiy
11. もう一度ここから始めよう
12. 真夜中を突っ走れ!
13. Shining Run
14. THE AGES
15. この愛を捧げて
16. Final Wars!

Encore 1
17. アウトロー・ブルース
18. FUNKY PUNKY
19. 二人のSEASON
〜Goods Promotion Skit
20. ロンリー・ガールを抱きしめて
21. 絶狂!ジャンピング・グルーピー
22. 星空のディスタンス

Encore 2
23. The Boxer
MC - Takamiy

24. Glorious 


BACK