Tokyo Incidents ウルトラC

Tokyo Jihen Ultra C Live Tour 2010 (5/12 Tokyo)

I lucked out and was able to snag a decent ticket for their show on Thursday in Tokyo. It was an isle seat, close to the front and there was no one sitting directly in front of me so I had a great view. As I’ve mentioned on this blog before, Tokyo Jihen was one of the first Japanese groups I discovered back when; they remain one of my favorites to this day, I’m glad I had a chance to see them live.

Showing up to the concert venue, I didn’t know what to expect. I had only been to H!P concerts in the past, so obviously this one was going to be a different experience. First thing that stood out to me was the number of females attending the concert, outnumbered the males by at least two to one. The genre, and Shiina Ringo I guess, pulls a totally different audience for the most part.

Tokyo Jihen: Sports

Tokyo Jihen: Sports

One thing that really hadn’t crossed my mind was buying concert goods; they had a bunch to choose from. Some of the people there already had on their tracksuits and, t-shirts and flags. There were also things like socks, shoes, perfume, medals, stickers, &c. I decided to get a shirt and a couple flags, figured that I could wave it around as the concert went on (and kinda assumed that others would be doing the same).

So, on to the concert itself… the stage wasn’t too big, and really it didn’t have to be, it’s not like they would be running around and dancing and such, they’d be playing instruments which would kind of confine them to certain areas. The band comes out on stage and, what are they wearing, like some sort of caveman outfits or something with their hair all braided and one or two spiky braids just sticking out for good measure. Oh, and Shiina Ringo is blond. I was maybe expecting something sporty, to go along with the sports album and victory theme. They would wear the same stuff until the encore, where they would change into some more casual clothes.

The performances of the songs themselves were awesome. Much flag waving was had and a little bit of dancin’ thrown in too. A comment on the audience, I found it interesting how during some of the slower songs things would just stop. I mean, it’d become like silent and nobody would move a muscle, not even bob their heads. Even when the song happened to pick up the pace and instrumentals somewhere in the middle there, they’d still be stiff, until the next song came on. Now, I’m not one to get all enthused and excited really, but even I was like, come on guys, let’s wave our flags or something, heh.

I haven’t been keeping hard tabs on their releases this year, so there was a little from their latest album that I hadn’t heard before, but it was all good. The stand out performance for me had to be Killer Tune, one of my favorites, if not the favorite song of theirs. The audience really seemed happy when it came on as well. OSCA and Senko Shojo were also a couple of favorites that I really enjoyed seeing live. The band mostly stayed in their respective positions on stage, moving around a little, sometimes coming together to do a little group play thing. Of course Shiina was the most animated, from picking up the guitar, singing through a megaphone, tweeting a whistle, waving a flag, just doing her thing. She was great, but then, so was the rest of the group. I like the dynamics that the addition of the piano and guitarists voices adds to the sound of the group as well.

The lighting effects throughout the concert were pretty cool. There was a countdown timer, 3 minutes, for Noudouteki Sanpunkan, which was nifty too. They used the same screen to run some 8 bit like video game graphics during a couple songs which I thought added a interesting dimension to things, but not so much to be a distraction.

Overall, great show, great group. Admittedly, it’s probably not a concert that I would go to see over and over again, but I really did enjoy it.