2012 Final oneman for defspiral + MASATO’s Birthday Party

Live Report

by Chika Yoshizawa, Mio Nagasaki, posted January 25, 2013

CENTER OF THE SPIRAL

> MASATO Birthday Party (2012)

 

Keeping the heat on in 2012, defspiral held many events and oneman lives with a DVD release to bolster their catchy single, LOTUS. The band finished up 2012 with a oneman show on December 29. Shibuya WWW was filled with defspiral fans eager to enjoy the year’s last oneman… but also to celebrate guitarist MASATO’s birthday with a very special show.

DIVE INTO THE MIRROR” struck up with sweet piano, TAKA singing out in dynamic tones under a bright spotlight. “Come on, Tokyo!” His shout became a detonator and loud replies caught on through the hall. TAKA sang emphatically, holding the mic tightly while MASAKI beat vigorously at the drums. Right from the beginning, the band set to work, riling their fans. RYO raised both hands overhead at the peak of the excitement before“REVOLVER,” in which the band’s rock soulpunched through. Red and yellow strobes escalated the mood, the floor growing heated while MASATO and RYO rocked their heads. MASAKI had the spotlight all to himself during his short drum solo before low bass resounded to the high tones of MASATO’s guitar solo.

READY OR NOT”had the band searching the crowd’s faces under the bright light and another skillful solo from MASATO led into powerful drumming in the bridge. Meanwhile, the fans danced to the groovy bass and responded to TAKA’s voice by headbanging and dancing along. When the next intro hinted at “PARADISE,” a cheer arose from the audience. TAKA made a point of removing his jacket before he danced provocatively with MASATO. The vocalist sang lustfully, letting loose with heavy cries. Then, he introduced the band members before kicking off “RESISTANCE.” MASAKI hit the drums happily as he surveyed the excitement of the floor while TAKA continued the playful promiscuity. He got close to RYO and kissed the bassist’s cheek, slap bass echoing hotly in a musical mirror of the performance.

“Thank you for coming to our live in this busy period,” TAKA greeted. “Blast all your negativity out here! It’s Osouji (‘spring cleaning’ at the new year) for the soul! Have fun!”“Tsuki to Venus,” arranged with a jazz/funk twist, had TAKA dancing to the upbeat drumming. Soon after, gentle guitar joined the fray and danceable bass made the audience sway. That deep bass sound continued to resound in the intro of “INNOCENT.” TAKA put some pressure on his voice for the number, using the mic stand as a crutch. Then, “MISTY” struck the heart of defspiral as MASAKI raised both arms and crossed his sticks, bringing them down on the drums in one soulful sound. The three front members rocked their bodies to the music, MASATO playing up close to TAKA while RYO’s plucked bass line escalated in cohesion with the drums.

RYO cried, “Are you ready? Tokyo!” and pointed to MASATO, who growled the opening of “Babylon.” TAKA’s vocals reached out and sucked the crowd in to the dark vocal line, contrasting with MASATO’s passionate cries though the vocalist himself traded in alluring falsetto for a heavy shout. Carrying on the intense atmosphere, distorted bass sounded in the mysterious arrangement of the revitalized “Break The Silence” intro.

MASATO and RYO came to the front as a “NIGHTMARE” engulfed the crowd. Deep, shady vocals resounded, the fans responding to TAKA’s wild call and response with shouts and raised hands asthe atmosphere grew heavier with each wave. TAKA held out the mic to RYO who joined him at center and the two shouted together. The guitars stayed close to the crowd for “SALVAGE,”headbanging heavily. MASAKI’s harsh drum beat drove through the powerful chorus and, after a quick but impressive guitar solo, the venue went quiet for TAKA who sang out loud and proud.

“Let me sing this song for you and your precious ones,” TAKA expressed in introduction of “MELODY” which started with MASATO’s melodious guitar. The spotlight shone on the vocalist and the audience was fascinated by his sweet tone. MASAKI struck a cymbal, raising one stick in salute to the guitar riff which built up to the intensity following in “Twilight.” Though the tune started off lighter, it turned heavy at once and the audience threw their heads to the music. Keeping up the excitement, MASAKI jumped to his feet in the intro of “LOTUS” and the fans jumped highto the robust dance tune, raising their hands along with TAKA. The wild dancing brought the set to a bright finish.

Despite the energetic dancing, the audience never showed a hint of fatigue and clapped and shouted until the band’s return. When defspiral came back to the stage, TAKA said, “It feels great to confirm our love for each other. We have another live after this but let’s sing now for fans who can’t join the party later.” He asked the birthday boy to play guitar for his own celebration and began to sing “Happy Birthday.” The crowd laughed as TAKA stopped halfway through because the key was far too high. The second time around, everyone joined in with the much more comfortable key, MASATO grinning as he played along.

“Thank you very much for coming today,” TAKA said again before giving a little something back to the crowd. “New singles will be released in both March and April and we are going to release our second album in May! We’re also planning a concert at Osaka MUSE on April 14…‘TAKA’s birthday live.’ And then there’s MASAKI’s talk-show at Shibuya CHELSEA HOTEL on April 25.” The crowd laughed, instantly catching the joke and TAKA corrected himself.“We will hold MASAKI’s birthday party on that day.” Sowing one last seed of anticipation amid the thrilled fans, TAKA went on to announce defspiral’s third anniversary concert at Shibuya O-WEST on May 27. Hot on the heels of all this good news, the backing track of “SHINING (IN YOUR HEART)” began to play, arare,catchysong for the band which brought defspiral and their fans together with beautiful guitar, melodious bass, steady drumming and sincere vocals.

“Let’s walk toward the bright future together!” TAKA cried, entering into “STORY.” The number was a touching follow up, but more importantly, it paved the way for the conclusion of the set in “PROGRESS.” An important song for defspiral, title-track of their first album, the re-arranged performance began from the chorus. TAKA sang with enthusiasm, his gorgeous falsetto in perfect harmony with the music. At the end of the number, he raised his hands to applaud the crowd, bringing the first part of the celebratory evening to an end.

Set list
Entrance music

  1. DIVE INTO THE MIRROR
  2. REVOLVER
  3. READY OR NOT
  4. PARADISE
  5. RESISTANCE
  6. Tsuki to Venus
  7. INNOCENT
  8. MISTY
  9. Babylon
  10. Break The Silence
  11. NIGHTMARE
  12. SALVAGE
  13. MELODY
  14. Twilight
  15. LOTUS

Encore

  1. SHINING (IN YOUR HEART)
  2. STORY
  3. PROGRESS

> MASATO Birthday Party (2012)

VK Exclusive

There are 24 photos in this visual kei exclusive.

Chika has been interested in visual kei music since VK bands first began holding free lives the Hokoten area in Harajuku. She was too young to go watch them back then in the early 90s, but the scenes on TV caught her eye. Since then, she has loved the passion of VK music and, of course, music in general. She majored in English literature in Japan and learned to speak English in the UK. After graduating from university, she has worked for both American and Japanese companies in IT and as a translator and continues various translations today.

Mio Nagasaki is a freelance photographer lending her time, skills, and love for the genre to ROKKYUU Magazine.

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