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This is the only post I'm making today, so...congratulations to Akanishi Jin and Kuroki Meisa on the birth of their little girl! ^_^ I am not into kids but I wish them the best of luck.

Meanwhile! Today was the last day of TOKIO's 1718 live tour, which I attended with [livejournal.com profile] floinvietnam. They were recording and broadcasting it in cinemas across Japan, and I didn't take my notebook out, just scribbled down a couple of things afterwards. So here are a few snippets so I don't forget!



We're beset with rainy weather at the moment, so the Budokan was, as when I last went there, a sea of umbrellas. Fortunately the goods were all wrapped in plastic, or I'd have feared for the pamphlet. I did get asked if I had a camera but no bag check this time, and in we went to find our seats. I'm going to blame the water dripping all over the stairs for the fact that I tripped going up them, okay? We were up near the back, over on the right, but the view actually wasn't bad - we couldn't really see the rightmost screen, but the centre and left ones were okay, and we didn't have anything obstructing our view of the stage.

The setlist was mostly from the latest album, which I haven't really had a chance to listen to, so while I recognised songs, I didn't get much in the way of titles. Most of the album, plus Sorafune, T2, Ambitious Japan, Love You Only, Joshima Song (very 18-centric) and Jumbo. There might well have been more?

We got three encores! The first, for which Nagase for some reason came out wearing a helmet, was Ambitious Japan and Love You Only (lots of audience participation in the latter), the second was just them talking, and the third was Jumbo. (Again, lots of audience yelling.)

I didn't recognise Sorafune until just before the lyrics came in - the guitar at the beginning was lovely, but didn't sound like it at all! The timing was also a bit different. They had fire all around the stage for this one, both real and projected, and the next song began with fireworks.

Taichi was incredibly energetic (not unexpected), bouncing all over the place in bright orange shorts and a backwards cap, but during the first part of the show, where they were largely snazzily dressed (no accounting for Leader's glitzy trousers or tasteful leopard-print guitar), he marched up to Nagase (song was NaNaNa?) and got all up in his face to tease - lips first. Nagase had to take it one step further, of course, and then they were locking lips for the camera. This became a topic of discussion in the MC - evidently, TOKIO are not the kind of band fathers would like to take their young daughters to...

Good number of guys in the audience, and they were pretty vocal. (Mabo and Taichi seem to have the most fanboys.) It was actually like going to see kabuki, with guys randomly calling out stuff...

No clue which song it was but Nagase got us all waving the tour towel (or in the case of me and Flo, our white cardigans) for the whole thing, doing different arm movements. It must've looked pretty impressive on the cameras!

And boy, did the guys mug for the cameras. Nagase and Taichi, in particular, would've appeared from all sorts of weird angles.

Nagase attempted to rap at one point (wasn't terribly successful), but there was also some beatboxing, during which Leader danced like...er, I'm guessing it was a parody of the typical Johnny's dancing? It came across more Saturday Night Fever to me.

They were supported by guys on brass and girls on strings; the girls sometimes kept the beat by waving their bows in the air, and the guys messed around with the band a bit, including getting in on one of those dances where they all get in a line behind each other and move in sequence.

Silver streamers shot over the arena crowd towards the end, what appears to have been the setlist scrolled up the middle screen (alas, too late for me to catch it), and they had a video zooming out on the Earth into the universe just before everything went dark and the back wall lit up with tiny starlights everywhere. (To match the ones in the audience - no official penlights, but that didn't stop anyone!)

Sorry, not much in the way of notes. What can I say? Everything looked and sounded awesome, the guys were crazy, over the top and full of energy (even when we kept making them come out for more). Nagase actually got down on his knees at one point, though he got up again before he thanked us. Con finished about 6:40ish? It was a lot of fun!
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Mec

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