|This post is written by Gilimandra|
¦From left to right: Sea A, Angela, KOTOKO, and Stereopony.¦
The sun had started to drown itself into the horizon line, lots of visitors who had bought either the ‘Exhibition Ticket’ or ”Exhibition+Stage Access Ticket” started to make their ways home, cosplayers who’d been fully immersed in their characters the whole day began to show off their true colors, and the enthusiasm had started to dim out in general, but not for those equipped with “Super Anisong Stage Ticket”. Around five o’clock in the afternoon, passionate concert-goers had formed two-lines in front of the main stage’s entrance, even though the concert itself started at six thirty in the evening. Didn’t want to lose in term of overwhelming excitement, I immediately followed suit and extend the line for a further thirty centimeters. Dear AniManga Manias, this is it, the last post of AFAID 2012 Day 2 Special Report, SUPER ANISONG STAGE CONCERT!
Before we start, I’d like to outline that the task of getting a decent photograph was very, very difficult. The audiences were strictly prohibited to bring their cameras, especially SLR, and even when the concert was on-going, the staff were actively going around checking if there’s a ‘naughty boy’ trying to snap a picture. My dear friend Sultan was having a Canon SLR hanging around his neck when he was about to enter. The next thing that happened? A rather ripped and rough security guard approached my friend and said “You can keep that camera somewhere else before coming here, otherwise we can exchange cell-phone numbers and settle this outside.” My goodness!
“Sea A”, “Angela”, “Stereopony” and “KOTOKO” were the stars of the day. “Sea A”, a new idol group that’s about to make its debut in Japan, was full of energy, but wasn’t able to transfer their so-called excitement to the audiences. This weak start was probably due to their doing lip synch from the very get-go. The girls tried their hardest to project a cheerful and lively group, especially with their dance choreography and all-smile attitude, however precisely that very effort made everything seemed forced and artificial. The response from the audience’s seats were unsurprisingly not that high in the air. But overall, it’s not bad of a debut before actually debuting for real later. Lessons learned, girls!
¦Sea A, trying their hardest.¦
The second group, “Angela”, came as the real surprise of the night, at least that’s how it looked to me. Theirs was the most shocking and electrifying performance in my opinion. They totally owned the stage! It’s partially because of the sound system working at its best (it got worse later) that Atsuko was able to display her powerful voice to its fullest. But it’s the guitarist’s, Katsu’s crazy and enigmatic yet entertaining behavior that riled up the audiences, making their excitement level went sky-high. After a song, the duo started to introduce themselves. When it was Katsu’s turn, rather than introducing himself as ‘Katsu’, he confidently asked the audiences to call him ‘oni-sama’, which was greeted with a round of applause and everyone happily shouted “Katsuu onii-samaaa”.
Throughout Angela’s performance, there were more antics coming from the very lively and energetic Katsu. After another song ended, he suddenly went to the edge of the stage, pointed his finger at an audience and said, “Cantik!” (in English it’d be ‘beautiful’ or ‘pretty’). He then went from side to side and said the same word for several times to several people. And again, after a song ended, our dear Katsu oni-sama asked the audiences in English, “Are you Otak?!” The Indonesian audiences were quiet for a couple of seconds, as “otak” in Indonesia means “brain”. However they quickly caught up and understand the meaning of Katsu’s word, which was “Are you Otaku?” The audiences answered “Yes!” in concert without hesitation. Katsu followed up with “Me too.” and then he asked whether the audiences knew the first Gundam or not. When he got another “Yes!”, Katsu immediately ordered the audiences to say “Zieg Zion!!!”
What follows naturally was a possessed mass of people in a military-like organization saluting their absolute leader. The phrase “Zieg Zion!!!” echoed throughout the building for around five or six times. Katsu’s last antic came striking when on another break Angela was talking about their favorite foods. Atsuko mentioned “Soto Ayam”, “Bakso”, and several other Indonesian foods, but it’s different with Katsu. The audiences throw up several convincing guesses like “Rendang”, “Satai”, “Nasi goreng” and several others, but to no avail. Finally, Katsu let out a very unexpected answer, he answered in one-short word, “Kerupuk.” His statement was followed by Atsuko who said “Kerupuk wa oishii ne.” (literally means ‘rice cracker is indeed delicious, yes’)
After bringing several well-known anime songs to the stage, including their brand new song “Kings” that serves as an opening song for the anime “K”, all hell really broke loose when Atsuko asked the audiences, “Do you know Evangelion?” What followed after was Atsuko singing the classical legend anime song from Evangelion called “Zankoku Na Tenshi No Thesis”. Everyone suddenly synchronized together as if they were one being. Everyone was singing together, from the very beginning till the very end of the song. Finally, Angela left the stage after thunderous applause from very satisfied audiences.
Proving to the seniors that as youngsters they ought to have more powers and energy, “Stereopony” did just that. The band consisting of three-members, Aimi as the vocalist, Shiho as the drummer, and Nohama as the guitarist powerfully rocked the whole building. It was an earthquake of a high magnitude. It was in their performance when the sound system balance started to become slightly awry, making Aimi had to struggle to prevent her voice from being drowned in by the loud instruments.
But the atmosphere still really heated up considerably, especially when their hit songs started to come out one by one. “Stand by Me” from “Eureka Seven AO”, “Namida no Mukou” from “Mobile Suit Gundam OO”, “Tsukiakari no Michishirube” from “Darker than Black: Ryuusei no Gemini”, and “Chiisana Mahou” from “Letter Bee Reverse” automatically made the audiences danced around in joy and sang the song together until their voices ran out after some time. The emotions surrounding the stage moved up further a notch because the two giant screens on the sides of the stage were showing the anime that they’re currently singing.
Moreover, “Stereopony”‘s stamina was really remarkable. It felt like they were doing a marathon, as they sang all their songs that night almost without a break at all. Receiving a positive wave of enthusiasm from their fans, the drummer Shiho said in Indonesia, “Kalian semua bagus!” (she meant to say ‘You’re all great!’)
After a fierce performance full of adrenaline rush from Stereopony, a few minutes later came the queen of anime songs, KOTOKO. Knew best how to fire up the audiences, whom majority are otaku, KOTOKO ambushed unprepared spectators by injecting her hit song “Light My Fire” from “Shakugan no Shana Final”. Unfortunately, the sound system had taken a turn to the worst, of which there was no voice coming out from the mic in around the first two minutes. KOTOKO had to gestured to the staff, telling them that the sound didn’t come out. The problem was quickly fixed, however, the balance was already hopeless as KOTOKO’s voice was overwhelmed by the instruments for almost all the time during her show.
¦KOTOKO in action.¦
But it didn’t prevent her to push the audiences already high spirits into seventh heaven. KOTOKO’s been around in the business for some time, so she knew how to use the trademark otaku yells (shouting Hei! Hei! Hei! continuously at any given time while swinging the light stick back and forth in accordance with the rhythm) to the fullest. A list of hit anime songs, including “Sociometry” from “Shakugan no Shana 2nd season” keep the excitement high in the air. In a break between the songs, KOTOKO tried speaking Indonesian to say “Are you happy?”, but somehow it turned to “Saya senang?” which means “Am I Happy?” in Indonesia. Well, no matter, we love the fact that you tried your best to communicate with us Indonesians.
After two encore songs, “Hayate no Gotoku!” from the very well known anime “Hayate no Gotoku” and “Re-Sublimity” from “Kannazuki no Miko”, the crowd was finally calmed down and satisfied and sent KOTOKO to the back stage with loud cheering and goodbyes. And it ended just like that. Less than a minute later, the audiences naturally started to excuse themselves by happily walking through the exit in an orderly manner. It was a very amazing experience to me who had never watched a concert before, and since the general reception was very high and the event itself was highly successful, let’s hope for another AFA to be held in Indonesia next year!