sukekiyo Tour 2020 DRIPPIN’ @ Akasaka My Navi BLITZ – 2.16.2020
Live Report by Shannon McNaught
sukekiyo fans have come to expect celebrating vocalist Kyo’s birthday at a live show with him, and this year was no different. The sold-out Akasaka My Navi BLITZ performance also kicked off the band’s first tour of 2020, “DRIPPIN’”.
The stage was decorated with five miniature TVs displaying monochrome static and color bars, and the band’s equipment (drums, acoustic guitars, electric guitars, basses, turntables, electronic drum sets, voice manipulators, keyboards, and more) dotted the area. A complicated, intersecting black-and-white polygon featured on the cover art of the band’s latest album INFINITUM provided the backdrop to the set.
A defining characteristic of sukekiyo shows is that the audience is completely silent; there is no cheering when the band takes the stage, and there is no applause between songs. So when the stage lights went out and bright blue spotlights shone on the audience to signal the start of the show, the only sound you could hear in the venue were their footsteps and the sound of them setting up their equipment as the members took the stage one by one.
Blue and teal stage lights revealed the band members as they began the first song of the set—a new song (title TBA)—all dressed in loose black clothing. Kyo had short black hair, black lipstick, and sported an oversized black blazer. Drummer Mika’s cymbals started the new song’s lengthy introduction comprised of distorted sound effects, Takumi’s piano chords, and Kyo’s deep and soft vocals. The distinctly brighter sounding “uso” followed, stage lights steadily brightening with the progression of the song.
Kyo performed the next song, “guuzou moratorium”, with his back to the audience in order to make use of modifiers that made his voice sound robotic. Members switched between instruments—bassist Yuchi abandoned the strings to use an electronic drum set instead—and sukekiyo’s signature dark and slightly chaotic mood took over the set. Neon pink stage lights signified the beginning of the hard rock fan-favorite “waizatsu”. While sukekiyo fans are normally encouraged to remain silent, Kyo urged fans to provide the shouts, even yelling “Louder!” at the audience at one point. Fans responded accordingly, their volume almost matching the band’s.
With this new precedent set for the rest of the show, fans jumped, headbanged, and shouted along for “sharara” from sukekiyo’s latest album and “the daemon’s cutlery,” a throwback to their first album. The EDM-inspired “dorothy” provided a lapse from the hard rock, with almost all members taking up turntables or electronic instruments over their traditional ones. The chaos quickly returned for “honnou okotowari”, where fans provided loud back vocals, headbanged, and jumped. Even the members traveled around the stage, switching back to their original basses and guitars.
The second new song of the night (also untitled) featured Takumi on the synthesizer, Yuchi on turntables, and Kyo with slow, falsetto vocals. Uta’s nostalgic 90’s guitar sound completed the love song-esque mood of the new track. The most surprising song of the night, perhaps, was “Valentina”, a song almost certainly inspired by 80’s pop. It even included some furitsuke hand movements, a definite first for sukekiyo fans (though at this point, they’ve probably learned to expect anything from the experimental group).
The set closed out with “hyouhaku flavor”, the ending song of INFINITUM. It featured their signature dark and chaotic sound, dramatic red spotlights that were like a horror movie, and Kyo’s distorted, robot-like voice. As the song ended, the band members exited the stage one by one without any emcee or greeting, bringing the opening show of “DRIPPIN’” to an end.
1. (New song)
3. guuzou moratorium
6. the daemon’s cutlery
7. kimi wa mukidashi
10. honnou okotowari
11. aoguroi hysteria
12. (New song)
13. 12 ji 20 pun konrinzai
15. tada, mada, watashi.
18. hyouhaku flavor
sukekiyo Official website: https://sukekiyo-official.jp/lang_en/
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