Thursday, 7 August 2014

Flumpool「MOMENT」5th Anniversary Tour 2014

I think I've been on quite the lucky streak as I won not only tickets to the National Day Parade Preview. But also a pair of tickets to FLUMPOOL 5th Anniversary Tour 2014 「MOMENT」!!!

SAY WHATTTT?
Yes, I'm really lucky. I feel so blessed. Hehe.  ( ^ ~ ^ )
Special thanks to TEENAGE Magazine for both the NDP and concert tickets.



Some people were asking me if I was a huge fan of Flumpool. Truth is, I barely knew the band. Other than the relation to Bloody Monday, I didn't really know much about them. Die-hard fans of Flumpool, please do not kill me for winning the tickets (even though I may not deserve it as much as others). Well, the thing is, I just love Japanese bands and going to their concerts in general. Of course, I'm selective too when it comes to Japanese bands. As I've mentioned before I'm a big big big JROCK fan. So solo artists and JPOP groups don't appeal to me much, unless they're legends like T.M.Revolution, Nana Mizuki or YUI.

Anyway, as usual, I would always pump myself up a few days before the concert by doing some research on the band as well as replaying their songs over and over again in my head. I normally have to keep an open mind to a slightly different rock genre (since I'm all about hard rock plus a little metal) but their songs catch on really quick. Here's what Flumpool all about.


What started out as a group of childhood friends with the same passion for music, has now evolved into one of the most popular bands in Asia. Flumpool has a clean, cool yet fresh look going for them despite being considered a rock band. Personally, I feel that it actually suits their style of music which consists more of soft indie tunes and strong ballads. Though, that doesn't mean they're lacking any rock elements either.



Left to Right: Genki, Seiji, Ryuta, Kazuki

Officially formed in 2007,the band consists of childhood friends Genki (Bassist), Kazuki (Lead Guitarist) and Ryuta (Lead Vocals) plus drummer, Seiji, who joined the band later on. Flumpool's unique sound has definitely caught the attention of many which eventually gave them more opportunities to branch out their music in other areas. They sang theme songs for various shows such as the crowd's favoruite series, Bloody Monday, the lovely Kimi ni Todoke movie as well as the roaring drama serial, Resident - 5-nin no Kenshui. They also performed with other great artists, like one of my favourite bands, Nico Touches the Walls and the well-known Mandapop band, MAYDAY.


Here are some of my personal favourite hits from them. Do check it out!












This is one of their more hard rock sounding songs. Yes, they can rock it too!

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Anyway, the concert was held at *SCAPE, which was a relatively small area for the surprisingly huge turnout that night. For the first time ever, out of all the concerts I've been to, the GA section was actually fully packed with people. I had to squeeze my way in to find a good spot for me and my brother to watch the stage from. Another surprising thing I noticed was that almost no one was holding a lightstick. That was really new to me beacause I'm never without a lightstick at concerts. What wasn't any different was the fact that the VIP area had chairs again... I seriously wonder what's the purpose since this is a JRock concert. Maybe it was for them to put their bags or belongings on. It could also possibly be for people to rest in case they were giddy in the midst of it all. Then again, it might just be consideration for some older folks who came to watch the concert. Basically, it's just plain weird and out of place. And you know, it's even more awkward when flumpool's Ryuta actually asks the people in the VIP section to stand up and rock to the beat. Haha. This was the second time Flumpool came to Singapore; the first being the showcase together with fellow band, WEAVER in 2012. However, this time would be a first solo full-length live concert for the band in Singapore.

Selfie before the concert starts.
Waiting for the concert to start.

And though it was a first, it has become one of the most memorable concert experiences for me. Why? It's simple really.  The crowd was full on high throughout. The intervals were timed perfectly. The interaction between the band members and the fans were superb. And the music was of course, undoubtedly, awesome. I have to say, the band members are really good at engaging the crowd and they can converse in not only English but Mandarin too. Though it seems they are much comfortable speaking Mandarin. This was what went down at the concert.



The band opened up with the words, "Singapore, we missed you!" which led to the crowd screaming back in delight. They started the concert with a favourite song of mine and the night raged on from there. After a few songs, the outgoing vocalist, Ryuta addressed the audience, greeting us in English and Mandarin, asking where we were from. It was quite an adorable conversation:



Ryuta: Where are you from? Singapore?
Most of the audience raised hands
R: Oh. So many. Malaysia?
A few fans raised their hands
R: Ah, Selamat Datang! Somewhere else?
Some others raised their hands
R: Dà jiā hǎo! (Chinese) , Kob Khun Krap! (Thai) ,
Annyeong-haseyo! (Korean)

}




The crowd burst out in happiness, cheering loudly and laughing giddily upon hearing Ryuta's greeting in different languages. The band then continued on, playing one of their recent hits," Believers High". After a couple moments of non-stop jumping, cheering and waving hands wildly up in the air, Ryuta eventually introduced the members of the band starting with Daiju, their support keyboardist, followed by Genki, whom both greeted in English. Seiji, on the other hand, surprised many with his fluent Mandarin. Out of all the greetings, guitarist Kazuki's turn was the most epic. Kazuki greeted the fans, saying,

"Are you guys having fun? We want to make a special memory tonight with you in Singapore. So, we'll play this song."

Suddenly, the whole band started to play an all-too-familiar tune. I finally realised what song it was when Kazuki began singing out the words, "LET IT GO! LET IT GO! CANT' HOLD IT BACK ANYMORE~!!!"




It was none other than the ever popular OST from the movie Frozen. The crowd sang along the words in amusement. I noticed a bunch of people around me laughing and embracing the song in joy. After that gleeful moment, Flumpool actually played a Chinese song. I was told by a fellow fan that it was a Chinese rendition of the song "Tsuyoku Hakanaku". My Chinese isn't very good but it didn't matter cause they sounded great. Just when I thought they were done with the segment and about to continue on the next set of songs, Ryuta gave us a pleasant surprise by singing a part of the classic Beatles song, "In My Life". Ryuta's vocal range and English pronunciation is really admirable. Something which I find quite rare in Japanese bands.  The night of jam packed hits eventually continued on with another personal favourite of mine, "Hana ni Nare".

As the last song came to an end and the band left the stage, the fans began begging for more. I joined the people around me, chanting, " MOU IKKAI!" (one more time).  However, it's a pretty much died off after a while. Maybe we should have gone with "ANKO-RU" instead. Luckily, some hardcore fans from the VIP area persisted on by singing the chorus of "Taisetsu na Mono wa Kimi Igai ni Mitaranakute" repeatedly. Eventually, everyone joined in the chorus and began singing in unison. There was no way the crowd was leaving without an encore.





The members of Flumpool soon came out in their official concert tour tees (which looked great by the way) and gave the fans what they wanted. After two more songs, the crowd was quite satisfied and the band officially closed the night with Ryuta's farewell wish to return to Singapore to perform for us again. The band took their bow and left the stage after saying their goodbyes. But, of course, not before flinging guitar picks to the crowd. Seiji even took off his shirt on stage and threw it to the crowd. The girls were practically squealing over him. Anyway, here's a look at the set list for the concert.


CONCERT SET LIST:
1) MW ~Dear Mr. & Ms. Picaresque~
2) reboot ~Akiramenai Uta~
3) Hoshi ni Negai wo
4) Believers High
5) Two of Us
6) Belief ~Haru wo Matsu Kimi e~
7) Let It Go (Frozen)
8) Gūdú (Tsuyoku Hakanaku Chinese Ver.)
9) In My Life + Hana ni Nare
10) Hydrangea
11) Because... I Am
12) OAOA
13) Kimi ni Todoke


ENCORE:
14) Zhèngmíng (Akashi Chinese Ver.)
15) Asu he no Sanka



After the concert, an announcement was made at the venue. Apparently, there was complimentary drinks that would be given out as you exited the area. There was a choice of either bottled coffee or green tea; proudly sponsored by ITO EN. I wanted to purchase some merchandise, especially the concert tee but the sizes and design I wanted was sold out.

After concert selfie with my free drink.

What I can take away from this concert is that, despite being quite the happy go lucky band, Flumpool is 100% sincere in their passion for music. You can tell from their performance, their words and their gestures that they truly enjoy what they do. That ending speech by Ryuta and the full 90° bow to us, the audience, was really touching. I still remember the last few moments when he spoke before they broke out into that last song.



"Singapore, thank you for coming tonight. 
The last song is the one that we want you to hear most right now. 
Our nationalities and our culture may be
different - but our pain, sadness, hopes and dreams are the same.
Whatever happens, let's face it together without running. 
Even to the four of us, this song is a promise to always keep going. 
Let's stand as one."


It was so unexpectedly deep. The meaning behind it all. You can literally feel the atmosphere in the room change as he mouthed those words. It was just an emotional moment. This band is definitely far from ordinary. I think I now understand why Flumpool is one of the most popular bands in Asia. This tour of theirs was titled MOMENT and just as Ryuta said before the concert began; this has truly been an unforgettable moment for me. With open arms, I will gladly welcome them back should they return to Singapore again.

Ending off with a 90 degree bow to the crowd.


I shall end off this note with Flumpool's rendition of MAYDAY's OAOA which I believe was the song that brought the fans up into their highest mood that night as they simply screamed, "OAOA".
Enjoy!






For more on FLUMPOOL, visit their official site:

 flumpool official




*Note: Images & videos are taken from various sources which ado not belong to me. Credits to original owners.

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