March 26, 2009

Ahahaha you've got to be kidding me...

I can't believe this video made it onto the internet.

Momoi what have you done to us??

Posted by Paranda at 11:46 PM | Comments (5)

March 17, 2009

DMC concert goods

I'm back home finally. Forgot to post this before I left:

Despite eventually bailing out on attending Yukarin's Dreamy Maple Crown 2009 tour, I managed to get a few concert goodies shipped over thanks to nyol (lots of overlap between Momoi and Yukari fans) who sacrificed many hours on line and some $200 in my stead.


In the picture starting from top left, going clockwise: Yukari Oukoku Hachimaki, bag, DMC B2 poster, mon cheri single, METAUSAHIME single, 2009 B2 calendar (six poster pages), Cherry key holder, portrait set, and pamphlet/photobook.

I wish I could have gone but the circumstances just weren't right. Here's looking at 2010. Maybe then I'll finally put these to use.

Koiseyo puppets are serious business.

Funny story while at Chuck's in Hawaii: Another Momoi/Yukari fan asked me who I liked more: Momoi or Yukari. On my seiyuu idol fandom scale from 1 - 10, Momoi would be the only 10, Yukari would be an 8, and most everyone else would be somewhere below that so it wasn't a super hard question. However when I replied out loud, I somehow slipped and said "もちろんゆ-" before correcting myself. It was too late - she commented on the "yu" part. How can I live with myself after such blasphemy?

Posted by Paranda at 10:25 PM | Comments (7)

March 17, 2009

Honolulu Festival 2009 Complete

So I've got some time to kill as I wait for my flight back to NYC. Here's a quick rundown of my trip.

Friday 3/13
Momoi events:

Beachside BBQ. Last year the fans all went to a seafood restaurant so we thought this time was going to be similar and the venue would be like a beachside BBQ restaurant or something. Actually the food (chicken and spare ribs) was just hauled in and grilled on location by staff from Honolulu Festival. We sat in a grassy area on mats in a circle around Momoi.The format was very open and you could basically do whatever you wanted. Dinner entertainment was provided by Momoi, who played requests on a little toy keyboard.


You can play a surprising amount of music despite being limited to a single octave

After dinner, Momoi said that she wanted to learn thundersnake because she saw it being performed it on video. "Thundersnake" refers to a semi-complicated movement that involves a lot of frantic hand movement and typically follows into "romance," which is basically a lot of synchronized pointing (LLRRLRLLRRLLRLRR). Initially Momoi intended to practice both thundersnake, and its variation in Thundershot (involves another modification to mimic summoning and throwing a thunderbolt) but after a demonstration Momoi said it looked so hard that it was impossible and just stuck to the first one.


Momoi attempts an uninterrupted run of thundersnake after being shown the basics. Video available on request.

Since there has been some backlash against certain idol fans (not Momoi) getting too obnoxious during concerts, Momoists try to keep their own idol's reputation clean by assigning two movesets to many Momoi songs. For large concerts or cramped spaces, only a simple version (call) is used out of concern for their neighbors. An alternative no holds barred version is busted out during smaller fan events and only works when you have a high amount of fans consenting to participate ahead of time and lots of space to avoid accidentally punching someone out. Momoi broadcast that she intended to let everyone on stage again, so fans jumped at the chance to prepare the harder version and what started out as just thundersnake practice turned into a full rehearsal of LOVE.EXE.


Momoi's E-GU-ZE with LD20s

Once Momoi left, the only thing left for the day was to unpack the glowsticks shipment. This is what 700 glowsticks look like.


It took a whole group of people an hour just to unwrap and sort everything.

Friday's Dining:
Breakfast: One locomoco (a huge hamburger/egg/rice combo) at Lulu's Waikiki
Lunch: Since most Japanese fans didn't arrive until the afternoon, we kept it simple with a Puka Dog at the International Market Place
Dinner: BBQ

Saturday 3/14
Momoi events:

Terrible weather in the morning kept us indoors for most of the morning. In the afternoon, Momoi went to the beach with fans and showed off her new swimsuit. Having practiced the night before, Momoi came prepared to do a full run through of LOVE.EXE on the sand. Keeping the tradition alive, fans changed into their swimsuits and participated in shooting a homemade otagei video on the beach with Momoi in the center (last year we did Romantic Summer).


Checking the angle for shooting the EXE video

Saturday's Dining:
Breakast: A "special pancake restaurant" that Japanese fans wanted to try turned out to be IHOP.
Dinner: Bruschetta pomodoro and spaghetti alla pescatore @ Arancino.

Sunday 3/15
Momoi events:

Sunday was the main event. Fans waited at the convention center at noon to greet Momoi as she arrived. Momoi decided to pick out a special outfit for this performance instead of her usual costume.


Momoi pops out of her limo

Brand new concert goods were brought out especially for this event and it was the first time anybody had seen them. There were two new T-shirts designed by Mars Sixteen and seven new wristbands with a new Momoi emblem totaling $120 worth of new merchandise. The fanclub lined up early but they were very fast with ordering ("one of everything please"). The English/German single that debuted at Connichi was also available for $10. Momoi manned the booth to give autographs but due to time constraints, she could not pose with anyone individually for pictures.


Momoi will autograph anything regardless of whether you purchase or not. She'll sign DS screens, travel bags, zoom lenses, T-shirts off your back, you name it.

After autographs, Momoi made a brief stop at the maid cafe and then went straight to the stage. Since she only had half an hour, the set list was kept short:

1. Motto! Yume! Miyou!
2. Cue!
3. Naito de naito
3.5. Akihabalove (one verse, vocal only)
4. Romantic Summer
5. Ai no medicine
6. 21st Century
7. Tondol Baby!
8. Wonder Momoi
9. LOVE.EXE

Unlike last year, Momoi was unfortunately only scheduled to perform on Sunday instead of both days.This meant for anybody new to Honolulu Festival in 2009, it would be the first and only time to enjoy a Momoi concert. Momoi knew this so she wasted no time in getting as much audience involvement as possible. By the fifth song, she was pulling the younger children on stage. In the middle of 21st Century, she suddenly left the stage and began singing as she traveled through the hall giving out glowsticks to people, singing to elderly couples, and shaking hands with babies.


"チルドレンズ! カム トゥ ザ ステージ プリーズ!"

During the middle of Tondol Baby, Tanaka from JTB runs over and tells us "Stage! Go! Go! Go!" which was the fanclub's cue to enter. We stayed back on the upper deck so nobody would accidentally commit a PR disaster and smash a four year old with a glowstick.


Oh no, my glowstick bandolier strap is twisted! Gotta fasten more snugly next time.

Note to self: LD20s get HOT if you use them for too long. Good thing I had that power glove - it acted like an oven mitt.

The rest is self explantory if you watch this video.

What can I say? I went to Honolulu Festival 2008 expecting the things that happened that year were so amazing it only happened once in a lifetime. Now in 2009, the magic was recreated a second time in a row with an even more ridiculous over the top allowance for fans to get SO DAMN CLOSE to the action. I'm sitting here in the aiport now with only one sentence that Momoi said at the end running through my mind. "See you next year!"

Sunday's Dining:
Breakfast: Hashbrown and eggs special at Galaxy Steakhouse. Same thing you can get at IHOP except for a third of the price.
Dinner: 16 ounce rib eye at Chuck's Steakhouse.

Special thanks to tenton for image #3 and #8 and priz for image #9.

For more HF2009 coverage in Japanese, visit the source itself: Momoi's blog! Can you believe Momoi didn't like blogging that much before? She now posts many times a day. Also be sure to check out the Daily Momoi Times, run by Momoi's Youtube camera man (in case you wondered who shot the video).

P.S.
Countdown until somebody triangulates the objects in Momoi's picture and figures out exactly which hotel room she stayed in.

Posted by Paranda at 12:11 AM | Comments (6)

March 15, 2009

Practice

After BBQ on Friday night, Momoi said she wanted to learn "thundersnake" (otagei) because it looked cool in one of the DVDs. One thing lead to another and by the end she was learning the full LOVE.EXE steps and singing into a glowstick like it was a mic on the beach.


Momoi does the motions leading in to "romance" with the LD20s.


Here is a comparison shot against UO as danie requested. The white circles show the LD20 and LD10 lights, and as you can see they blend in very well even with freshly broken ultras (by half a minute they are brighter than UO).

It's amazing how all the fans know to keep a stash of multiple ultra oranges or pen lights on their person regardless of the situation or setting just in case impromptu stuff like this happens. You know how magicians will pull flowers and doves out of their sleeves in one swift motion? Yeah...well these guys do that with glowsticks. And they're wearing T-shirts.

You can see some videos on momoi's YouTube channel. She has a new swimsuit this year.

Pics thanks to tenton since I was in the crowd. It's 6:30AM Sunday in Hawaii right now so we're only a few hours away from the concert. Getting ready..

Posted by Paranda at 12:06 PM | Comments (3)

March 8, 2009

Packing up concert gear

Thanks to everyone for the kind comments in my last post. I am now packing since the trip is 4 days away.

In addition to the power glove, Momoi wristbands, towels, shirts, and standard 6 hour glowsticks, this year's personal concert gear has seen a significant upgrade with the addition of some items and removal of others:

concert gear

- To substitute 5 minute ultra orange sticks, two new Fenix LD20 lights and diffuser accessories were added thanks to a recommendation by catsspat. These are about as bright as UO sticks but last 2 hours on the highest setting. They will be used during LOVE.EXE, henshin segments of WONDER MOMO-I, Tenbatsu!, and any other moments where UO lighting is necessary. They will save the need to carry 20 UO sticks this time around and many more in the future. The LD20 also has strobe mode although I don't think I will find any opportunity to use this unless I suddenly have a pressing need to annoy people or induce epilepsy

- A 20 capacity shotgun shell bandolier has been repurposed for Ultra Intensity glowstick storage. Since there aren't any good LD20 compatible diffusers for blue, yellow, or pink it was necessary to rely on ultra glowsticks. Ultras burn very quickly, so it is very possible to go through two or three per song. 10 ultra blue have been reserved for Yume no baton, Koi no meiousei, or any ballads that might be in the set list. 5 ultra yellow have been reserved for the slim possibility of Chuo Line (to match the color of the train) and Thundershot, and 5 pink have been kept on hand for Komugi tracks.

- For general purpose use, neon pink and neon blue electronic penlights obtained during the Animelo 2008 trip have been added to the main belt. These have a life of about 3 hours and may will serve as backup in case I run out of ultra glowsticks and UO lighting would be inappropriate for the song. Two smaller pockets have been added for AA and AAA batteries.

- Removed from this year's armory are the triple LED tactical flashlights. These were useful for R/G/B beams but were not practical for concert use due to the lack of a good diffuser and the odd angle of the flashlight heads.

- Might be removed: 7-glowstick holster. This was my primary method of cyalume delivery in 08 but it has been largely made redundant by the Fenix lights. They do act as a nice counterweight to them though. I may swap it out for a dedicated powerglove hook.

Momoists have also prepared 650 glowsticks available for the audience, shipped by tenton. This is down from last year due to Momoi only performing one show instead of two.

Posted by Paranda at 3:15 PM | Comments (9)

March 6, 2009

Fire in my NYC apt.

The FDNY does not fuck around. They will barrel their truck straight into the building, smash all the windows, and axe open doors and walls in seconds without knocking and are quite liberal with the hose. It's also not 4 - 5 firefighters like you see with drills; they'll bumrush you 20 - 30 guys at a time. I'm lucky to be alive due to their fast work.

I basically lost a whole lot of shit last night thanks to some homeless dude who decided to light up while hiding underneath our stairs. Most of my stuff is still in New Jersey though so I'm not exactly free from the shackles of materialism and ready to become a vagabond hippy with a clear sense of perspective now that I've "lost it all" just yet. Most of my figures, all my CDs/DVDs, and backups of all my drives are still safe. Stuff I lost in the apartment was about $4k worth of hardware, $2k of clothing (two suits ruined), and $1k worth of figures/posters. Some of you who have been inside there know how closely it's all packed. The rest will probably be looted by people since all the doors were busted open. I'm going to go back there tomorrow to see what I can salvage provided the stairs are safe to climb.

I hauled ass out of there as soon as I smelled smoke but not before saving my harem. No way I was going to let those firefighters bust open my door and see this (had at least some pride left to preserve).

Took the day off and temporarily staying with my parents now. Trying to get this smoke out of my lungs.

What a buzz kill just as I'm about to head off to Hawaii for Momoi Festival too.

Posted by Paranda at 5:01 PM | Comments (8)

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