September 29, 2010

MOSAIC.WAV Jouraku Live in Uzumasa

On 9/25, I attended the MOSAIC.WAV Jouraku Live in Uzumasa

I've been to Uzumasa's movie themepark in 2008 before, but since MOSAIC.WAV was performing this time I decided to make the trip to Kyoto once again. Their "Jouraku Live" was part of Uzumasa Sengoku Matsuri, which is a Sengoku themed event held annually at Toei Uzumasa Eigamura since 2006. The the mascot of the festival Karasu Tengu Uju is voiced by MOSAIC.WAV's lead singer MI-KO, and her images songs are created by the band.

I arrived at the park in the afternoon with nyol, though we felt a bit out of place with all the fujoshi cosplayers there for COS-PATIO. But once 4PM rolled around, MOSAIC.WAV fans started filling the area and we soon met up with some Kansai Momoists. For obvious reasons, there is plenty of overlap between UNDER17 and MOSAIC.WAV so it wasn't unusual to see them there. Seeing as they also carried ave;new straps, we got along pretty quick.

Fan engineered "light claw" held together with rigid bar reinforcements and plastic fasteners

Before the live started, I went to the goods table and got some Uju tea, Uju Maccha candy, and the latest Uju image song CD. The tea purchase included a special card from Uju's illustrator nanamin (designed like a playing card), and the CD purchase included a numbered autograph lottery ticket.

At 5PM, we started lining up outside the Nakamuraza theatre, a big building that doubled as a meeting hall in old samurai movies. Though my number was 197 to get in, I was able to get pretty close to the stage and there was plenty of space to move around.

Nakamuraza Theatre, way overexposed (sorry)

While waiting for the event to start, the stage projected videos of interviews with Uju's creators and artist. Close to showtime, cosplayers (same girls pictured here) officially acting as Uju and Enmusubi Tengu Ai came on stage to prep the crowd and members of MOSAIC.WAV followed shortly. MI-KO appeared in a festival getup, Kayamori showed up in a classy looking top hat with rabbit ears, and finally Koike aniki, who pretty much looks the same as from the UNDER17 days only he's traded his trademark black coat for a wool skullcap and ripped jeans.

MI-KO started talking oddly and in a thick accent, which I assume was Kyoto dialect which got some laughs from the crowd. The band started with Ujutama Ujurinpa Kyoukotoba version a slow song which makes use of Japanese instruments and Kyoto dialect, but used the closing to transition seamlessly into the fast paced original version like it was one big song. The effect was enormously successful.

Next song was the 2009 Uju single, Tenshinranman Nyubabababa-n (aff. links). It was so incredibly upbeat I fell into the rhythmn immediately. This is one of those songs that fits classic MOSAIC.WAV's mold of old school denpa exactly, and many parts of it were pretty much crafted specifically for calls (BABABAAN, GOGOGOGO, etc) so by the end I was completely exhausted from getting so into it.

Then the band continued with Katamichi Catch Ball from the most excellent anime Potemayo. Since I haven't been keeping up with MOSAIC.WAV in the recent years, I was originally worried I wouldn't know much of the set list. But after this, those fears were put to rest. So far they played 4 songs in a row that I knew and liked, and hey after hearing something like Katamichi Catch Ball at an Uju event, I think I can accept whatever else they throw at me. People were spinning all over during "guru guru mawaru planet" and generally having a good time. This is just such a happy and uplifting song.

Uju, Suzuhime, and Ai. They were greeting as you went into building. They are NOT the cosplayers who danced on stage though (see link above)

Next was Sennou, Sakushu, Tora no Maki, another supremely fun song from their Superluminal AKIBA-POP album. MI-KO lead the chorus chants and provided hand motions for everyone to follow. Same deal with Zensekaiteki Touch Panel. Touch Panel was the first song I didn't know, but no worries because we got a whole room miming touch panel actions with UOs MI-KO conducting up top as the queen bee Post-live research says this song was released during this year's C78, and is now likely to enter into heavy rotation on my upcoming playlists.

During MC, Koike asked if there was anybody from Australia (I guess he must have gotten mail from somebody saying they would be there). But, it was a no-show. Then he asked if there was anybody from overseas, so I yelled New York. I was hoping to fish out some engrish conversation from them, but they asked me in Japanese if I was here specifically for this event. Of course I said "yes" though technically, I'm here for a lot of lives, but yeah I'm in Kansai specifically for MOSAIC.WAV. Fans did the whole "ohhhh" thing and clapped.

After MC, they did Yuri Seijin Naoko-san. Since I don't know the song and it wasn't that interesting I'll skip it in favor of the mega surprise she threw next. Even hardcore fans next to me went nuts when MI-KO started chanting AKIBA-POP, and then the tune hit. Bliss to my ears. This ranks up there with hearing Popotan at A-North. Goddamn it's We Love AKIBA-POP!!, a song that I have probably looped 8 zillion times when I first got interested in MOSAIC.WAV. I never thought I'd hear this at an event in 2010 and I was totally stunned at my excellent luck. "A. K. I. B. A. AKIBAPOP, YAAAAAAYYYYYYYYYYYY!!!" during the song's swell is the most fun chant to do in the world. That's right, if we just go word for word, it's more fun than even any Momoi or Yukarin chant.

Finally MI-KO announced the last song for the night, their newly released single Nou Nai Sai Sei ~Ecphoric Dance~.

Like Momoi, MOSAIC.WAV has a unique encore chant of "A. K. I. B. A. AKIBA POP!" instead of the typical "EN-KO-RE". During the chant, even the stage crew got into it and flashed the spotlights between pauses. The encore session was very short, and the band reappeared after only a few minutes.

During the encore MC, they made fun of themselves for how fast their songs are (measured his average BPM at 230). When Koike said he did work on the new Ikamusume anime, he said "this time it's a slow song. Only 180BPM" which got "uh that's still pretty fast" response from the audience. They also brought back the cosplayers for the encore, where they would stay as background dancers (just doing really simple dances). During their intros, Uju and Ai would each come up to the stage, spin around, and fans would scream kawaii (for Uju, MI-KO also did a surprise voice-over from behind). Fans called for MI-KO to do the spin too, but she got embarassed and wanted all the MOSAIC.WAV members to go up with her. So everyone went up and crowd screamed kawaii. Before MI-KO could reply though, Koike took the mic and and said "thanks" much to everyone's amusement.

The encore tracks were Uju's 2010 theme song Jintori Batoru! (sp?) Marutake Ebesu and Dennou Kassen X Uju no Jin, two very fast paced songs that burned the rest of the crowd's energy and UOs.

After the live, we stayed around to wait for the autograph raffle results. The uju cosplayer started picking drawing numbers and I got called as the second winner. I went up to the stage to get autographs and handshakes with the band members. When I got to Koike, he asked if I was native Japanese living in NY, which I denied. Kayamori didn't say anything, but he's a silent kind of guy so it was expected - looking back I really regret not saying something to him. Anyway, he had a big friendly grin and had a firm handshake. When I got to MI-KO, the first thing she said was New York must be cold and did an exaggerated shivering. Then she asked if I was flying back that day. In the spur of the moment, I just said yes (even though I've got another week) so she gave me a good luck wishes on my journey back.

Signed copy of latest Uju 2010 image song CD

Out of all the events I've been too so far, MOSAIC.WAV audience energy is probably the closest to Momoi's style. The chants and movements are heavily coordinated, and the cyalume policy is pretty much a choice between max out lights or ultra orange.

Final goods for the day: Uju CD, maccha candy, Uju tea, and Uju collectible cards. No picture because I packed them real deep in my suitcase and don't wanna unpack them now

Posted by Paranda at September 29, 2010 12:26 AM


thanks for the great review as always! i gotta go to one of their solo lives one of these days. Glad to hear the energy is so high. I was wondering what it could be like since I heard them on a radio and mi~ko happily discussing the audience's calls, only to see them ban 'otagei' at their lives. but i guess when they say that, they just mean the really wild stuff. sounds like a great experience.

Posted by: mandi at September 29, 2010 7:12 AM

Yeah there was no otagei, but mi-ko had her own moves planned for almost every song and getting people to copy so it was no loss. IMO it's actually better that way.

Posted by: paranda at September 30, 2010 12:33 AM

fucking awesome dude

Posted by: denpanosekai at September 30, 2010 6:00 PM

Whoa, that light claw looks freaking awesome! I do wonder who was supposed to have come from Australia...

Posted by: zalas (car.ess) at October 2, 2010 1:10 PM

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