A HYMN OF THE CRUCIFIXION
Dec 24th at TOKYO BIGSIGHT
Composition and text: kanako/ Translation: Shin Kosuge
The last time the GazettE performed at Tokyo Big Sight was back in the summer of 2006. Since then the band has vastly evolved. Now for their last live performance of 2009, they will put on a show in front of 20,000 fans. The members said that in 2009 they hadn't performed live that much. The concert on December 24th provided an ideal staging ground towards their activities in 2010. Here's a first-hand look at the important show.
Since it was December 24th Christmas Eve, the fans that arrived at the venue were clad in a vast array of costumes. Lots of noise was created by the fans inside the Exhibition Hall. With a max capacity of 20,000 people, there was a considerable distance between the stage and the seats at the back of the venue.
The pale lights inside the hall silently went out. The audience was immediately on their feet and started to shout. On the darkened stage the concert title 'the GazettE live09 A HYMN OF THE CRUCIFIXION' could be seen clearly. The members made their way onto the stage and were ready to launch a the GazettE style all-out offensive. The voices of the fans reverberating through the hall became louder.
The first song of the night was 'ザクロ型の憂鬱 / Zakuro Gata no Yuutsu'. They hadn't played the song live for quite some time, so gleeful screams went up from the crowd. Ruki's vocals and Aoi's acoustic guitar filled the venue with a melancholic mood. Ruki shouted "Don't hold back!" Blood-red lights shone on the members, signaling the beginning of '赫い鼓動 / Akai Kodou'. During the intro the guitars were played at breakneck speed, and in tandem to the frantic sounds everyone headbanged. The shouts from Uruha, Aoi and Reita pierced the fans' eardrums and sent them into further turmoil. As Kai's drums kept up a steady rhythm, the aggressiveness of the members never dissipated. Next was 'BEFORE I DECAY', the new song released on October 7th 2009. Uruha and Aoi's guitars picked up speed and supported Ruki's singing. The lights shone brightly during the chorus, and the 20,000 fans jumped up and down, making the whole venue bounce.
"Let's make this a very long and fun concert." After Ruki's short MC the stage became dark. Uruha and Aoi played acoustic guitar, the signature feature of 'Crucify Sorrow'. In stark contrast to the previous songs, a cool breeze swept through the hall. With 'Filth in the beauty' the venue instantly became chaotic again. Everybody headbanged and jumped nonstop. The band belted out deep, heavy sounds for 'CIRCLE OF SWINDLER', and in '瞞し / Mayakashi' the members expressed sorrow with a hint of pain.
The stage lights brightened to begin 'ガンジスに紅い薔薇 / Ganges ni Akai Bara'. The melody caused a peaceful atmosphere to permeate through the hall. As Reita's bass and Uruha's guitar led the song, the audience watched the stage spellbound and unblinking. Ruki announced the next song in a small voice. "Here's a song we haven't played for a long time..." It was '7月8日 / Shichigatsu Youka'. Then the next track was '虚無の終わり 箱詰めの黙示 / Kyomu no Owari Hakozume no Mokuji'.
Soft orange lights started to shine on both sides of the pitch black stage. The spotlights were directed at Ruki. As he lowered his hand holding the microphone, he shouted out the next song '体温 / Taion'. The sounds of Reita's bass added weight to the dark, foreboding melody. Coaxed by the powerful drum beats from Kai, during the chorus the audience bent their backs. The driving, weighty melody ended with a few notes from Aoi's guitar and Ruki saying "Genjitsu [現実; truth]."
"This is our last show for this year, so we're going to celebrate it in style. Tonight's one big Year End party called 'A HYMN OF THE CRUCIFIXION'. Tokyo, bring it on!"
After warming up the crowd with discussions about Christmas, the band began 'AGONY'. The tune was irresistible; everyone started to dance. In tandem with the melody the members ran left and right across the large, wide stage. The fans responded in kind by raising their arms and jumping. The lights all around the venue glittered during 'HEADACHE MAN'. There were headbanging, mosh pits and all sorts of mayhem going on. Even the large hall was having a hard time containing the energy of the 20,000 fans as they thrashed about. It was something that could only have happened at a the GazettE concert. The next song was 'COCKROACH'. Kai thrust his drumsticks upwards, and the audience became rowdier. The band wasn't over yet. Kai's drums and Reita's bass further enticed the fans, and while they headbanged 'DISCHARGE' started. The never ending drum beats made both the members and fans violently swing their heads. A large sign featuring the band logo 'the GazettE' flashed on and off. The members were obviously having a good time. The intense fervor of the fans engulfed the gigantic venue. While the excitement lingered, the members left the stage.
Everyone inside the hall called endlessly for an encore. 20,000 fans began to chant. Eventually Reita and Kai reappeared. Reita held a microphone and smiled. "This is our last live event for this year. Forget everything about this year, and instead remember everything about this concert." The first track for the encore was the fan favorite 'Ride with the ROCKERS'. In rhythm with Reita's shouts the audience furiously pumped their arms. A grinning Kai shared a joke. "We're having a good time, aren't we? Even thought it's a the GazettE concert it's not raining! (laugh)" Everyone laughed out loud at the Kai-style comment. He then whispered "Merry Christmas." He threw down the microphone and in his own voice hollered at the audience. "Show me what you've got!" Since the people even in the back were raising their arms in response, everyone must have heard his voice. Uruha and Aoi joined in. Together they performed the popular Christmas song 'Rudolph the Red-Nosed Reindeer'. The Christmas present from the members brought smiles to everyone's faces. Then it was time for some more the GazettE music. The frenzied melody and shouts from the members seemed to brew a storm right inside the venue.
Ruki appeared onstage. Kai's drumming was followed by Uruha's guitar sounds that reverberated through the venue. It was time for '赤いワンピース / Akai One peace'. The members dashed along the elevated walkway constructed to the side of the stage. The next song was '十四歳のナイフ / Juyonsai no Knife'. The fans shook their bodies and danced in sync to Kai's drums and Reita's bass. As the melody picked up speed, Uruha showed a guitar solo. That made the tune gain even more momentum. The sounds of the guitars slithered across the floor during 'THE $OCIAL RIOT MACHINE$'. The audience was headbanging just as energetically as the beginning of the show. The excitement carried on into '関東土下座組合 / Kanto Dogeza Kumiai'. Ruki invited the fans to dance at the beginning of 'LINDA~candydive Pinkyheaven~'. The sounds of the fans clapping perfectly in time bounced off the walls and echoed through the venue. Stage lights shone through the darkened hall. Then long strips of silver tape flew upwards to the ceiling and rained down on the audience. All the way to the very end of the concert, both the fans and members were enjoying themselves without a trace of fatigue. The smiling members bowed to the audience. Applause and calls toward the members erupted from the crowd. The shouts and noise never died down as it changed into chants for an encore. As the members walked away, a quiet melody could be heard from the speakers [usually signaling that the show was over]. But the chants didn't stop. After a while, the members once again climbed up onto the stage.
Ruki picked up a guitar, and then held the microphone. In a low voice he said "We're going to go crazy next year too, so please come and see us again. With love, the last song is 'Cassis'..." Gasps of surprise could be heard from the crowd. 'Cassis' was the 8th single of the GazettE, and had been released around this time of the year in December 4 years ago. The smooth sounds of Aoi's acoustic guitar made a warm atmosphere spread inside the hall. Onstage 5,000 light bulbs shone like stars in celebration of the Holy Night. The sounds of Ruki, Uruha and Aoi's guitars wove together. All the bad and bitter memories of this year disappeared, leaving a gentle feeling in its place. As an added surprise 'snow' began to fall. For all the people there that day, it must have been a most wonderful Christmas Eve.
'the GazettE live09 A HYMN OF THE CRUCIFIXION' started that night with the large video screen onstage flashing the following words; "On this Christmas Eve, what do you wish for?" "There is only one answer..." The concert was markedly different from normal live events. The set list including both new and old songs, the surprise performances just perfect for Christmas Eve were cases in point. For both the members and fans it undoubtedly was a great night in which their wishes became true. In March they will go on a concert tour exclusively for fan club members around small to mid-size venues. The band shows no signs of stopping. They are set to reach new heights in 2010 as well.
1.ザクロ型の憂鬱 / Zakuro Gata no Yuutsu
2.赫い鼓動 / Akai Kodou
3.BEFORE I DECAY
5.Filth in the beauty
6.CIRCLE OF SWINDLER
7.瞞し / Mayakashi
8.ガンジスに紅い薔薇 / Ganges ni Akai Bara
9.7月8日 / Shichigatsu Youka
10.虚無の終わり 箱詰めの黙示 / Kyomu no Owari Hakozume no Mokuji
11.体温 / Taion
EN1. Ride with the ROCKERS
EN2. 赤いワンピース / Akai One peace
EN3. 十四歳のナイフ / Juyonsai no Knife
EN4. THE $OCIAL RIOT MACHINE$
EN5. 関東土下座組合 / Kanto Dogeza Kumiai
EN6. LINDA~candydive Pinkyheaven~