X JAPAN WORLD TOUR 2017 WE ARE X Acoustic Special Miracle ~奇跡の夜~ 6DAYS. Day 3 in Yokohama Arena Setlist:
Kiss the Sky
Heath’s Bass Solo
Pata’s Guitar Solo
Sugizo’s Violin Solo
Yoshiki’s Piano Solo
Miracle (with Ashley Knight)
Art of Life
Rose of Pain
Prologue ~World Anthem~
Longing ~跡切れたmelody~ [Longing ~Togireta Melody~ ]
I have been putting this off for a long time because it has been drawing very mixed feelings in me. Very bittersweet feelings.
I was in Yokohama around 10:15 to buy goods, because goods were necessary, and maybe I managed to come in around 12:45. It was hot, but much better than the time I was lining for Japan, as it was not so humid and I had the VAMPS parka which really protects against sun (not too much against wind though). I found most of what I wanted (and what I did not I managed to find afterwards, even if more expensive) and what I had been asked for and went off for lunch with a friend.
Then I was back to come in around 17:00, because doors opened at 18:00. It turned out that doors opened a bit earlier, around 17:30 and I was in my seat by 18:00. I had “arenaish” tickets. That means that they are sold as Arena Tickets bur are actually stand tickets that are better than some actual arena ticket. I was to the left of the stage.
They projected We Are X, the same version that was shown in Wembley, because why not heartbreak us a little to warm up? As the documentary rolled I started to feel something that has taken me a while to identify – fear. I actually dreaded that this was going to be the last time feeling them, that it was all going to be over. I had felt something similar with GACKT in the Last Visual Live, but only during the MC. This ran deeper, it made my chest ache, and it has not completely gone away yet. That is why I’ve been putting off writing this. I don’t want it to be over. It would hurt for it to be over.
As usual the stage consisted on a lower stage for ToshI, Pata, Heath and Sugizo (who is apparently Sugi-chan now, go figure!), and there were some stairs to lead to the piano and the violinists’ chairs. I am not sure I can go in a detail review of every song because the whole thing is a blur in my memory – so although I’ll try, forgive me if I get some events mulled or switched around. I guess that is what happens when the feelings are so raw. Yoshiki was in pain. So much pain that he could barely move but he insisted on walking from one side of the stage to the piano, and climbing stairs.
The show started when Yoshiki slid (limped) into stage along with the violinists to give us the first chords to Forever Love. Everybody flowed into stage slowly, and I had a chill running down my back. you’ve got no idea how many times I’ve literally had to stop walking because I had that live version, and now it was there, for me. Full of everything in life that is beautiful and painful. The ‘first part’ of the concert consisted on two other songs, Tears and Kiss the Sky with Yoshiki on piano, and of course ToshI giving us the intro to Kiss the Sky until he was convinced that we could give him the chorus all right.
There was a small pause then after which Heath came to stage to give us a bass solo. Then he sat down and Pata gave us his guitar solo. It was only a matter of time that the poor guy got bullied again, with the running joke of “he’s well now”, and other people would not believe me when I said it would happen. But it did. After Pata’s solo ToshI came out to do Drain, the only ‘non acoustic’ song of the ensemble.
After that we had Sugizo back on stage to give us some violin play that was very beautiful, and I did not know that saluting with the violin bow is something that he does usually, but I still loved it to pieces. When he finished, he turned back towards the right making his coat fly around and I swear that at that point the only thing that crossed my mind was ‘bitch, I’m fabulous’ because fuck it he is. And no, I don’t have a small soft spot for him.
After this there was a short break and Yoshiki climbed back on stage slowly. He wanted to yell at us that we are X and I think that was the moment when I started to lose my voice (that’s a very interesting thing about my voice being on and off this Japan trip), when he said “let’s do the X jump”, or similar, because this is the first time I have heard Yoshiki speak so much Japanese in a live (keep in mind I had only seen him in Paris and London before). He asked where people came from, including if some of us were from outside Japan and give us a piano solo which included a piece of Swan Lake. As he was climbing up the stairs, he stopped in pain and had to hold for support. There went my heart. What little was remaining unshattered at that point…
For Miracle we had Ashley Knight, who is apparently learning Japanese with Yoshiki on top of the 5 other languages she already speaks. Because she is awesome like that (there is a part of me that would love to hear a Hero duet with her and ToshI). She felt pretty comfortable in her skin and her role, and the conversation she had with Yoshiki onstage (in English) and then trying a little Japanese with the audience was an instant hit. She is one of the most adorable-sounding human beings in the world.
Then she left and ToshI came back. Trolling ensued. This ended up with ToshI having to do some Gin Gira Gin Ni Sarigenaku (Masahiko Kondo) and then there was La Venus and Hero, both very powerful songs (no, I did not cry, stop asking). Then came the remembrance of members gone, and we got Hide and Taiji on the screens behind the stage. There was Without You and the ballady part of Kurenai, along with Art of Life and Rose of Pain. Then came the adaptation of Week End to an unplugged version that made me fall in love with the song all over again.
Then there was Prologue ~World Anthem~ and the surprise of the night, a song I was hoping for but did not dare hope – I.V. It was just so beautiful, and so fitting that I can’t describe everything that I felt then. Again ToshI gave the audience the entry for the chorus / background before he started. Unfinished made me wish that it was a self-fulfilling prophecy, and Longing ~跡切れたmelody~ made me feel that no, that it was over. And then there was Endless Rain when ToshI lost his voice to tears. Literally. The guy could not sing anymore, and again rose the fear and the pain. At least I am pretty sure it happened through Endless Rain. The memory is more rooted in my heart than in my brain.
To close the concert all of them walked around the sides of the stage, Yoshiki threw roses and came to sit at the fences and smile. ToshI waved Heath’s goods towel. SGZ took his usual selfie – reminding people of X, not Spock and I was left with such a void feeling inside that almost made me numb. I was happy that I had been there, but at the same time I was sad, because the dread feeling was not washing away.
As the crowd slowly flocked out of the Arena, I found the gift boxes to leave Yoshiki a message from London and went to see the flowers sent by other artists for the show. I have to tip my hat to HYDE’s roses.
And just like that, it was over. It is over. I am still not sure whether it happened or it was just a figment of a dream.
Maybe it was.