• Quick Review of Dir en grey 11/29 Live @ The Wiltern

    Dic 1 2008, 22:55

  • Quick Review of Kaya's 11/08 Performance at PMX

    Nov 10 2008, 21:13

    Sat 8 Nov – Kaya @ Pacific Media Expo 2008

    [CTRL+F for KAYABLAH for the specific Kaya concert talk]

    Let's start from the beginning.


    Oh fuck. Oh fuck, what the hell did I get myself into? This isn't my scene, part of me dies for every minute I walk around.

    So anyway, I was told friday's PMX was pretty dead. On saturday it seemed moderately filled. My friend and I get our registration and kaya tickets, walked around for a couple of minutes and got the hell out of there. After a pleasant dinner at chili's and a discussion on where we may have gone wrong in life, we returned to get in line for the ballroom.

    Actually, it's worth noting that a bit before we left we went into the expo room that had various sellers. Marumusic was there and they had some versailles shirts. Thing is, they actually looked pretty good. At least, they looked better than the shit (I still bought it, shut up) that was sold during the LA versailles live way back when. My friend wanted to get the hoodie and I wanted to get the t-shirt.

    When we arrived at the line for kaya, the first thing we wanted to do was buy the goods. Turns out that the expo room and the venue for Kaya's show were one in the same, and they closed it at 6pm. Boo, that's the first missed opportunity for someone to get my monies for japanese music related goods.

    My friend and I stand in line, we die a little inside, but we stand strong. They check that our tickets (wristbands)are for pit, and we are handed a little picture for tonite's kaya live. It appears to be autographed, which I thought was pretty great. I couldn't see much good reasoning to attend Sunday's PMX, so I missed the Kaya Panel and the autograph session.

    A bit before 8PM we are let in. The pit area is basically the area right next to the stage, but blocked off with chairs. We're close so it's hard to complain about positioning. As we wait they play the same 4-5 anime songs
    over and over and I start losing my concert groove. At 8PM the first opening act shows up.

    It's announced that the first act is named Hide, and I thought that was cool. My first thought was that it would be a hologram projection of zombie hide dancing a jig. Turns out it was a largely forgettable act that didn't do much for me musically. The vocalist/leader of the band seemed pretty angry at life, or at least expressed
    a significant amount of passive aggressiveness for me and my friend to notice.

    He ends at 830, and another act sets up. The only thing one should need to know is that the band consisted of two arguably proficient male musicians pussy-whipped into making a crappy band by two Asian chicks.


    [setlist at end]

    He starts at 930. My first concert was that maybe the hall wouldn't have good enough sound quality for Kaya, but I was presently surprised. His first song was Kaleidoscope, which was pretty badass because that's the song that got me into him. Well, the glitter version either way, he performed the single version. At the start of the second song, Walkure, his two dancers come out and join him. They go on to do about 6 songs before the first break.

    It's worth noting that even though he spoke mainly in Japanese for his MC-ing, it was stil pretty entertaining. He often commanded the crowd in english to "say my name." He would also reply to nearly anyone who spoke clearly
    enough for him to hear, which I thought was pretty nice. If someone were to say he was pretty or the like, he would respond in english "I know!" and also do his high-pitched laugh. I've seen a lot of japanese bands, and Kaya clearly was most comfortable with an audience who may or may not understand his words - that's a plus in my book. When he would take a quick minute break to drink some water, he would go off to the left side of the stage, sit as he drank, and gestured for the audience to continue cheering by waving his microphone

    Anyway, during the extended break, his two dancers did a solo dance act. It was fairly entertaining, as the music played was genuinely good. I wish I knew what the track was so I can illegally obtain it, but oh well.

    When he returned he played 5-6 more songs, with Kasha being my personal favorite among them. His performance of the song had a lot of energy, as he got the crowed (or whomever was in front of me) to jump around and join the
    hype. The last song of the main set was glitter arch, which was a pretty appropriate end.

    His encore consisted only of "Rose Jail," which was a pretty intense way to fully end the show. The crowd (that I could see) went crazy and join in Kaya's chant. After that song ended the lights went on and it was time to get the hell out.

    Oh! but as we left they apparently set up a kaya merchandise for the end of the concert. "Great," I think, one of the main things I wanted to get out of the show as a nice Kaya shirt to subtly express my love for his work. The first thing I ask was, "any shirts?" The woman looked around quickly and ended up bringing up a small kaya towel, seemingly to suggest that's as good as it gets. Great? Really? You're going to have a live show going on but not print any shirts? That should be easy money right there. This was the second opportunity for someone to get my monies that failed. The other merch they had ad the booth was mainly his live dvd, some cds, calender, pictures and possibly other things. I wasn't too crazy about paying 18 dollars for a copy of the chocolat single, so I shuffled away with the small autographed picture being my only souvenir.

    Quick notes:
    Kaya's singing was great. It was on par with the quality on his cd, so this man is pretty damn talented.

    He had two costumes for the entire show. I don't pay too much attention, but the first one was that blank wedding-dress dealy, and after the dance solo he changed into something that looked like a mix of a lolita dress with big old kimono sleeves with a flower print.

    The audience was actually pretty good, in terms of they knew when to stay quiet. All too often during lives, particularly deg lives, the audience never knew when to shut up. There would be a quiet moment in a ballad or one of kyo's raggle-fraggle spams and the crowd would cheer over it. Not here, during Kaya's silvery dark performance the audience stayed quiet as to not destroy the mood. I wish that would happen more often!

    That's it. Having to deal with an expo environment I was not meant to thrive in, my friend and I constantly questioned whether this show would be worth it. So, was it? Yeah, definitely. Although the show as a little over an hour I feel I would be able to repress everything else and simply remember a fantastic kaya show. Having seen Electric Six the night before, I can now confirm that this weekend was pretty badass.

    That's it. Next time I attend a concert at an anime-type convention I'll just come in right when the doors are set to open.


    Silvery Dark

    Dance Solo

    Kagami Oni
    Psycho Butterfly
    Glitter Arch

    Rose Jail

    Final Note: hahaha ... "quick review"
  • Quick Review of 11/07 Electric Six Show + Sexy Trash CD Info

    Nov 8 2008, 10:18

    Fri 7 Nov – Electric Six, Local H, golden dogs

    I've only recently got into Electric Six, and this was my first concert of theirs. Furthermore, I pretty much love the vast majority of every album they've put out so far, so it would've been very hard to disappoint me. Luckily this was one of my favorite concerts this year. I haven't had the opportunity to see much good quality video of their live performances, so I was greatly surprised and amused. Dick Valentine is someone I probably would want to be when I grow up.

    Setlist (most are in correct order, middle-ish not so much):

    Flashy Man
    It's Showtime
    We Were Witchy White Women
    Future Boys
    Down at McDonnelzzz
    Gay Bar
    Dirty Ball
    Danger! high voltage
    When i get to the green building
    Rock And Roll Evacuation
    Future is in the future
    Your Heat Is Rising
    I Buy The Drugs
    Improper Dancing
    Dance Epidemic
    Germans in Mexico

    Gay Bar Part 2
    She's White
    Formula 409
    Dance Commander

    My personal highlight of the show was the encore opening with Gay Bar Part Two, as this was one of my favorites on the new album. Towards the end I figured it wouldn't be played.

    The Sexy Trash CD was interesting. The full title reads "Sexy Trash The rarities, demos, and misfires of Electric Six (1996-2007)" with smaller text reading "30 unreleased tracks of varying quality. It's hard to hate on this cd because that subtitle pretty much sums it all. The vast majority of the tracks are short, or very rough demos, if not both. It's worth noting that a large amount of lyrics from the older unreleased songs found themselves onto album tracks.

    Even more interesting are the demos of album tracks. Most have vastly different music. For example, "I Wish This Song Was Louder" originally sounded like a more upbeat 80s electro song.

    The packaging is a simple cd sleeve with relevant design, and the backside has a description on where, what, and when for each album track. For example, "Cold Future" is described as "a last ditch attempt from Warner Bros. after we had basically turned in Senor Smoke."

    1) Immolate Me (1997)
    2) I Know Karate (1996)
    3) Baby vs. Baby (1996)
    4) My Baby Is A Nuclear War (1996)
    5) One More Time (2000)
    6) Antisocial Sex Boy Hit Machine (1999)
    7) Future Girls (2001)
    8) I Thought You Was Dead (2000)
    9) Strike While the Iron is Hot! (2004)
    10) Turn It Up! (2004)
    11) Telephone Conversation (2005)
    12) Serious Help (2004)
    13) Future Police (2004)
    14) Living On The Sexy Planet (2004)
    15) Be My Dark Angel (2004)
    16) Devil Nights (2004)
    17) Another Song About the Devil (2004)
    18) Self Destruct (2004)
    19) Bite Me (2004)
    20) Stepsister (2004)
    21) Filthy Blankets (2004)
    22) I'm On A Diet (2004)
    23) People Like You (Don't Like People Like Me) (2004)
    24) Into the Roppongi (2004)
    25) The World's Smallest Human Being (2004)
    26) I Wish This Song Was Louder (2004)
    27) I Buy The Drugs (2006)
    28) Down at McDonnellz (2007)
    29) I Don't Like You (2007)
    30) Cold Future (2004)

    Overall I'm not too crazy about the cd. It's definitely interesting to hear the demos but the vast majority didn't do much for me. My favorite tracks being "I Thought You Was Dead," "Bite Me," "I'm On A Diet," and "I Wish This Song Was Louder."
  • Quick Review of Gutter Twins' July 10th Live AKA Hype Was Broughten?

    Lug 11 2008, 9:52

    Thu 10 Jul – The Gutter Twins, Ed Harcourt

    First thing's first, I got lost on the way to the venue. It should be easy, but I didn't know which side of sunset the roxy was on. I missed the proper turn, went to another street to make a U-turn, and ended up in Venezuela.

    The first act at 9pm-ish was Nick Oliveri, and he sure was a hoot. I got the impression that mostly everyone was taken aback by his style, but goddamn was it interesting.

    Ed Harcourt was next, and although I only did a quick skim through his myspaced tracks, I was anticipating seeing him perform. I definitely enjoyed some songs and am now considering the possibility of checking him out further, especially he last song on his set.

    The Gutter Twins's set overall was great, bits of already performed songs such as "Down the Line," "St James Infirmary Blues," and a few songs from Saturnalia were performed along with Dulli's Twilight Singers work and Lanegan's solo works.

    The entire encore set, for which Mr. Dulli seemed initially reluctant to give us, seemed to be song-for-song what was set to be performed at the last LA show. I guess Mr. Dulli wasn't feeling the crowd again? Perhaps it's just relative, as from my position it seemed like we were having a grand ol' time. There seemed to be a ton more flash photography at this show too. Either way, a great show and I hope the band had as much fun as most(?) of us did.

    A couple of things to note for no reason: A fellow seemed to recognize me as standing next to him at the GT Avalon show as well as tonight's. It was cool he remembered me and hopefully we'll see each other at the next time.

    Also, three people threw cigarettes toward Dulli. After a few songs they pushed their way toward the front of the stages and threw about 5 of them. The first bunch ended up falling to the floor unrecognized as the band had their backs turned to the audience for a minute. The last one to hit the floor caught Dulli's attention, and he simply threw it back saying "I don't smoke." Nice.

    Setlist graciously provided from a scan by kyselina at onewhiskey:

    Idle Hands
    Bonnie Brae
    Seven Stories Underground
    Live With Me
    God's Children
    Hit The City
    The Stations
    Bete Noir
    Flow Like A River
    Down The Line
    St. James Infirmary Blues
    Spanish Doors
    Each to Each

    No Easy Action
    King Only
    Methamphetamine Blues
    Number Nine.

    I swear, I can never get tired of hearing papillon live...

    Lastly, I'm half asleep as I attempt to write this. So, chances are there will be grammatical errors, spelling errors, subliminal, or super-liminal threats in which I refuse to take responsibility.

    Take care.
  • Quick Review of Versailles 6/3 Live AKA The Haterade Parade

    Giu 5 2008, 6:28

    Versailles @ Knitting Factory

    Actual quick review of versailles show is located in the middle of the post.

    First off, having never been to the Knitting Factory for a show, this was a very pleasant surprise.

    Around 5:30, well before the doors were set to open, we were allowed into the venue. The staff let us mingle within the secondary stage, and I wish more venues would allow something similar. The main stage was small, but not too small, it allowed for a great crowd with an even greater sense of intimacy.

    Only a few days before the event, the name of the opening act was revealed. Their myspace samples indicated a socal local metal act. This was the first time I've personally been hyped for an opening act.

    Their performance was good, but not great. Although more than technically able, a lot of the songs lacked that "oomph" to make them more distinguishable than any other local band. The first song felt like it lasted 30 minutes. More importantly their involvement gave the entire show a more metal edge, rather than a visual kei edge - something that's needed more often when bands like this come to the US.


    There's nothing negative to say about versailles performance. Given their current discography, there was no room for disappointment. The crowd was treated to a performance of every song they've released onto CD, including the omnibus track "SFORZANDO." Kamijo vet fans were treated to LAREINE'S "Last song," and Hizaki fans were treated to "Race Wish."

    There was tremendous amounts of love given to the band, and to my surprise, Hizaki received the greater amount of that love. The sound quality given by the venue was very impressive. My only complaint is that Teru's guitar was very low, while Hizaki's guitar was awfully high. Any solo done to Teru did not seem to come through by all.

    My personal favorite moment of the night, beating out the experience of "ZOMBIE" live, is being able to take part in the chant during "The Red Carpet Day."

    Other than the live, the merchandise was adequate for the psycho fan. Photobooks, cds, pamphlets and the like covered the table. I myself got a simple logo shirt. Although there was a more expensive band member photo t-shirt, it looked like crap. I have way too many damn black band shirts. These bands need to add variation to color.


    Why the haterade parade alternate title? As one who is rather relaxed in most public situations, there seemed to be more annoying people than usual. Uh-oh list:

    The tainted reality guy. I won't argue that it's a great thing he brought versailles to us socal folk, the first words that came to mind once he did the pre-show MC was simply "fucking cornball." He came off as a bit too fanlike, and professionalism taking a backseat. I also got the feeling that he was doing some of the work to get praise rather than to get a business going.

    "Drunk" fruity guy. C'mon people I know you experienced him. Some very tall, very effeminate blond spikey haired white fellow was just floudering around the crowd during versailles. Why "Drunk"? Well, more than anything he came off as one who would take a sip of alcohol, pretend to be drunk, and rambling "BLAAAH I'M HAVING A GREAT TIME MMMMDURRP" just to get attention. It appeared that he even spilt his drink on others. Very annoying.

    Bitchy old woman. Some very small, middle aged woman was also floundering around the crowd. The only difference was she was very aggressive in terms of moving around. Forcefully pushing anyone in the way with abnormal speed. It's been a while since i've gone to a concert and though "wow, what a bitch."

    So why am I bitching about people in a live review? Frankly, there was absolutely nothing wrong with the performance. Not a damn thing to complain about. So, I figured I'd also take the time to spout a bit of hate. Public hated is something I'm one to avoid, but it's bound to be fun.

    In summery: Versailles was all kinds of badass. Everything else: HATEHATEHATE.

    Disclaimer: Review may contain typos and improper grammer. Neither of which will be given a damn once the post button is hit.
  • Quick Review of Gutter Twins' April 2nd Live

    Apr 3 2008, 7:43

    Wed 2 Apr – The Gutter Twins, Great Northern

    Oh snap, what'd us LA folk do wrong on this night? No encore for us, and Mr. Dulli definitely left the stage after "Front Street" in a hurry.

    I can't imagine it being due to the crowd not being hype. From where I was positioned we all gave a lot of love. Granted it was only within a radius of five adults. Perhaps it was all those people using flash photography. The lighting for the show was fairly dark, and there were many instances where it was broken up due to flashes from the crowd.

    As the curtain went down, someone threw out the page with the entire setlist. From the quick glance I saw, the encore was to start with "Papillon" and end with "Number nine." Twas a sad turn of events indeed.

    Great show otherwise. Was that Jose Gonzalez's "Down The Line" I heard?

    The Gutter Twins
  • Quick Review of Friday and Saturday Jrock Revolution Shows

    Mag 27 2007, 22:42

    Fri 25 May – Jrock Revolution

    Nothing to note before friday's shows except it was hot. During the show we were allowed the take pictures, which was great because I took about 100 per night.

    Kaggra, was first, and I was fairly interested in seeing them. Not much else to say except I only recognized about 3 songs played.

    Partial Setlist (AKA songs I cared about):

    恋綴魂 (Kotodama)

    Duel Jewel was second, I've never heard their stuff and nothing really caught my attention. After their set I found a pick of theirs on the floor, so if they weren't selling them then I caught a pick, I guess.

    雅-miyavi was third, which was odd. I figured a "big" act like his would be last, but meh. To me, it seemed like a lot of flash but very little substance, especially with stuff like the painter. Nothing really caught my attention, moving on.

    After this, Yoshiki comes out after it's announced that miyavi is in the supergroup (big surprise) and also announced that the group will be at anime expo or something. Blahblah all well and good, but then Sugizo comes out and I go apeshit. I mean, c'mon, Sugizo! That fucker did superlove! I'm not sure how many people recognized him but I sure as hell did.

    He does a song or two with miyavi and it's over.

    VIDOLL comes next. To be honest, this band is the reason I even bothered to come to friday's show. They were just as awesome as I expected and their setlist was satisfying.


    …サンガコロンダ!! (...San ga Koronda!!)
    透明ナカゴ (Toumei Nakago)
    人魚 (Ningyo)

    Last is アリス九號. (Alice Nine). I'm not a fan of this band, and the show hasn't changed that. The one song I only remotely liked was Velvet, and they did that. So, I'm kinda happy.

    Setlist (that matters to me):


    The show ends, kinda ho-hum for me.

    The next day comes and I'm much more excited for the bands. My friends and I line up at 10am, it's far off, and we're burning. We make a makeshift clubhouse and probably got a lot of awkward stares from people walking by, but the clubhouse was perfect for our 4-player ouendan 2 games.


    Blahblahblah we get in and the show starts. Like friday's show we didn't know who was going on when, but I was happy that メリー was first.

    This was one of the bands I was absolutely excited to see, and their show didn't disappoint. Uh, except for the fact that they started with two ballads. Either way, their setlist was great, but I've forgotten the exact order.

    Setlist (first two I know are in right order):

    路地裏哀歌 (Roji Ura Aika)
    想ひでサンセット (Omihide Sunset)
    最果てのパレード (Saihate no Parade)
    オリエンタルBLサーカス (Oriental BL Circus)
    迷彩ノ紳士 (Meisai no Shinshi)
    溺愛の水槽 (Dekisai no Suisou)
    ジャパニーズモダニスト (Japanese Modernist)
    妄想rendez-vous (Mousou Rendez-vous)

    Once again we were in the dark about who was going to play, but everyone seemed to go crazy when it was ギルガメッシュ (Girugamesh). Rightly so, as they are a great band. Their set was great and their performance was top-notch. The drummer seemed really happy to be there, more so than any of the other members - it was great. Everyone was energetic and both the audience and the band gave so much energy. Their set was definitely an ass-kicker.


    Jarring fly
    遮断 (Shadan)
    終わりと未来 (Owari to Mirai)
    曖昧な味覚 (Amai na Mikaku)
    Deceived Mad Pain

    DéspairsRay was next. Going from girugamesh to déspairsRay was too much. They played songs from the mirror album, and once again the crowd was jumping. Their performance definitely contributed to making the night memorable. The extended Hollow was too too awesome.


    Closer to ideal
    凍える夜に咲いた花 (Kogoeru Yoru ni Saita Hana)

    Yoshiki comes out again, crowd cheers, he mentioned something about going to the Japan expo in paris etc etc.

    The final band is ムック. I should really have been excited to see them, but countless single releases (each getting more boring) has dampened my love for them. Their set was decent enough, and I do love libra for the most part. It just seemed like I couldn't get into the show nearly as much as the first three acts. I had no idea what the song after saishu ressha was, so any help would be nice.


    極彩 (Gokusai)
    路地裏 僕と君へ (Roji Ura Boku to Kimi e)
    最終列車 (Saishu Ressha)
    ??? (I didn't recognize this one)
    25時の憂鬱 (25ji no Yuutsu)
    リブラ (Libra)
    空虚な部屋 (Kuukyo na Heya)
    流星 (Ryuusei)

    and with that the show ended. The second day was by far the best day for me. In the end, both shows were worth standing in line for 7 hours each, and getting sunburned to hell.

    Any corrections on the 2nd day setlists would be appreciated.

  • Mandraku's quick review of Feb 23 Dir en grey show

    Feb 25 2007, 9:58

    Fri 23 Feb – Dir en grey, Bleed the Dream, Fair to Midland

    Opening acts: crap.

    DIR EN GREY: pretty damn good, although the sound system
    sucked. woo shokubeni and obscure without shitty lyrics.
  • Mandraku's quick review of Feb 24 Dir en grey show

    Feb 25 2007, 7:40

    Sat 24 Feb – Dir en grey, Bleed the Dream, Fair to Midland

    Opening acts: crap.

    DIR EN GREY: audience killer loop + The Deeper Vileness + Pink Killer = A+

    that is all.
  • The Half-Assed & Possibly Irrelevent Live-Report of the 10/25 Twilight Singers Show

    Ott 26 2006, 11:00

    I was tired as I wrote this, so there are probably a bunch of typos and tense issues. Furthermore, there might be some hidden racist remarks. I'm not saying there are, but I'm tired so It's not unpossible... I guess.

    Live Info:
    10/25/06 @ House of Blues in West Hollywood.

    First of all, yes I did get a little lost on the way.

    I arrive at about 7:30pm and the doors open at 8. There's a wait until 9pm until the opening act comes.

    9PM - 9:40-ish:
    First up is a fellow whose name I've forgotten. I believe he is the keyboardist to the band. I didn't hate his songs, nor did I like them. Indifference is awesome! [edit: Jeff Klein]

    10PM - 10:40:
    The second (there were goddamn two!) opening act was Stars Of Track And Field. I didn't can't the names of the songs, but I did enjoy them enough. I guess I'll consider the possibility of maybe mulling over the idea of thinking about checking them out further. After their set there's a long wait, and the curtain is pulled down.

    11:20PM - 1:10AM

    Quick half-forgotten setlist in order:
    Teenage Wristband
    I'm Ready
    Bonnie Brae
    Too Tough to Die
    Esta Noche
    There's Been an Accident
    Martin Eden
    Candy Cane Crawl
    Fat City (Slight Return)
    The Killer
    Underneath the Waves

    Finally The Twilight Singers. The curtain comes up, and there's the band. Greg Dulli makes his entrance and the audience goes wild. They start with "Teenage Wristband," and afterwards go into "I'm Ready." There's some banter, if I remember correctly, and then they go into "Bonnie Brae." We then are treated to "Too tough to Die" (HELL YEAH). Dulli got into it, the crowd got into it, it was all on the verge of a lovefest.

    Next up Mark Lanegan joins the band and does about 3 songs. I didn't catch the titles, nor am I familiar with them. So, if anyone happeneds to have gone to this show and knows help me out, ya?

    Immediately afterward he leaves the stage, and the band goes into "Esta Noche." It was at here that I thought my head would asplode due to overawesomeness, but instead a tiny tear trickled down my left cheek. From here on the setlist gets a bit hazy(er), but there was also "There's been an Accident."

    This is worth mentioning not only because the song is great, but there was some guy in front of me who was very much into all the songs. He was dancing very-slowish right in front of me. So, basically his body was rubbing against mine and he didn't seem to notice, or care. It was pretty awkward and distracted me from the song. I guess if I were gay, that would've constituted as "gettin' some." Bah.

    Once again it gets hazy, but we get "Martin Eden" and "Candy Cane Crawl." Dulli sings the shit out of that song towards the end, and surely it was a treat for us all. Somewhere in there was "Papillon"(!!!). The first set ends with "Fat City." I really didn't expect this, and I'm very much in love with this song. I was ecstatic to say the least.

    First set gets done, and the band takes their leave.
    During the wait Dulli riles the audience up to get the band to come out again. When they do come back it's "The Killer."

    Lanegan comes out once more and does one or two songs with Dulli. They were great, and I didn't know what the hell they were. It hurts me, but only just a bit. There's more songs that I forget but it all ends with "Underneath the Waves." The band was great, the audience was great, and the overall vibe of the music hall was godlike.

    So, it ends and I limp back to my car having stood for about 5 hours. I also had a slight fear of getting mugged, or raped walking around west hollywood at 1 in the AM, but meh.

    Yes, Yes I did get a little lost getting home.

    There it is, this is a lot of text that not a lot will read through. I never use the journals, but I felt this was a show worth blabbering about. I also write this in hopes of some clarification of songs that I did not catch - especially those of Lanegan's.