Ra:IN’s Rock’n’Roll Vaudeville Set Shibuya Aflame!
The twoman show, “Rock’n Roll Vaudeville 2011” gathered fans of all ages to see Der Zibet and Ra:IN Chelsea Hotel on June 24. After an interesting performance by veteran band Der Zibet, it was time for a unique sound and style for this modern scene. Surprisingly on time, michiaki, PATA, Tetsu and DIE made their appearance under blue lights. The crowd went wild, yelling out their names excitedly and clapping until michiaki took the mic and addressed the audience with a cool “Hello Tokyo!” With that said, the four men dove right into the performance with “Circle.”
The room went silent with no vocals to distract the audience from the pure energy derived from the instrumental performance. PATA seemed to drown in the song as his fingers sped away, seemingly effortless. Powerful drums set the beat while DIE thrashed his head fervently behind his keyboard. michiaki joined in, lost in the rhythm as he swung his head. The four musicians were impressive, and each note blended perfectly, making it hard to focus on a sole instrument. Red light took over and the song drove us away–in circles–through the virgin mountain under heavy Ra:IN, or so it seemed. Loneliness was embraced and the world disappeared as the red room was submerged in sound. Bass gave way to the guitar’s cries, the lights turning an appropriate blue. Drums and keyboard joined in announcing the thunders before the sobs of a gentle piano took over. The song built up as we approached the mountaintop and like the sun after the rain, golden light shone brightly.
PATA’s smile was contagious and as the song ended, the crowd greeted the band with earnest applause. “Happy” was indeed the best way to describe the atmosphere by the second song. The rhythm duo took over with heavy drums and potent bass lines.The African beat added soul to the atmosphere, Tetsu smiling brightly as he set the pace. The mood changed then for “Crying,” the heavier song firing up the crowd. The heat was visible and DIE unbuttoned his shirt in preparation for some more thrashing, he and michiaki helped by the fans, who sang during the chorus before the whole room swirled and twirled with the music. The lights turned yellow, like the welcoming morning sun, and a sense of peace filled the venue. The crowd pumped their arms in the air with the chorus in unmistakable 90s V-rock style.
“Thank you all for coming! It’s a pleasure to play with Der Zibet here tonight! Have fun!” michiaki said before the room was engulfed in red for METAL BOX. The electro beat invaded the room and PATA took a drag of his cigarette, seeming completely at home. The audience swung to the beat and DIE, now with a portable keyboard, moved to the front, interacting with the other members. PATA raised his hand in the air to thank the fans and immediately all hands in the room shot up. The rhythm built up with fast guitar and bass until the guitar sped away for a solo but soon bass and drums caught up in a fast ride, the song gradually building in heaviness.“You know, PATA is going to Europe!” michiaki said. As the crowd approved, PATA took the mic exclaiming, “You are not my Twitter!” The audience burst out laughing before the bassist introduced the next song “Psychogenic.” The venue was washed in blue and green lights while DIE took the spotlight, moving back and forth between keyboard and mic as he joined in with the singing. Half way through the song, red light opened the path for drums and guitar, which blasted off to the sound of a melancholic piano, mournful bass following close behind.
PATA traded his guitar for a two-neck for “Indictor to The Future.”michiaki also opted for a cool bass that resembled a machine gun and made sure to hold it up high in the air, neck pointed to the crowd, just like the imagery. With the audience on fire, the bassist encouraged the fans to pump their hands in the air and they immediately complied. Always with a cigarette between his lips, DIE moved around with his portable keyboard, interacting with the fans. PATA’s two-neck guitar with 12 strings on one neck and 6 on the other was imposing and the crowd didn’t dare to breathe as the guitarist’s fingers flew over the strings. The crowd moved to the beat as the song built up, michiaki taking the opportunity to interact with them some more, touching hands and encouraging them to loose all consciousness into the beat. The song reached the end and michiaki, in a rock and roll move, shot his guitar up in the air, leaving it hanging by its chord from pipe on the ceiling, the audience staring in awe as the bass swung dangerously.
A crimson veil welcomed “Wish.” The band and fans became one for the last song, swinging to the beat. PATA, now with a normal 6-string guitar let the guitar speak, speeding away under flashing lights. The rhythm duo followed fast behind while michiaki and the fans sang the chorus-rock beat taking over. Like a rocket preparing for takeoff, the four men prepared for the grand finale with DIE standing on his keyboardRa:IN left the stage to a hearty ovation, thanking the fans for their support.
In reply to an earnest encore demand, Tetsu came back, thanking everyone for coming. “I’m happy we are here with Der Zibet!” he said, “Are you also Der Zibet fans?” he asked, greeted by a loud, affirmative shout. “It’s not loud enough! Der Zibet!” he yelled and the fans replied with a loud “Yei!” But before the members of Der Zibet had a chance to make an entrance, he changed his mind saying… “OK, how about Ra:IN?” and a thunderous roar made the walls shake. As Tetsu talked about the tour and the tour goods, the other men made their entrances, sauntering in as if they were entering their own living rooms. As PATA arrived, the fans yelled loudly and it was hilarious to see Tetsu mimicking them fans with a teasing “PATA yei!” that filled the room with laughter.
The encore of “Summer of Love” was accompanied by some nice bass lines and confident drumming. Afterwards, the fans gave all they had for “WITHIN YOU.” Half way through, DIE introduced the bass solo and hands waved as the steady bass was set free and then guitar blasted off for the finale. But the night wasn’t over yet! Tetsu moved to the front once more, now with Der Zibet’s DVD in hand, and took some time to look it over, a bit unsure of its nature. To friendly laughter, he called Der Zibet’s guitarist Hikaru who was received with a big cheer. Hikaru thanked the fans for the support and ended up sharing some old stories. “No matter how many times I meet Tetsu, he never remembers me the next time,” he complained with an amused smile. Hal, Mayumi and Mahito also came back and finally Issay. “YOU!” Tetsu said, looking sternly at the audience. “Go buy the DVD! Even if you already have it!” The fans laughed, but he didn’t pay much attention, calmly passing the mic to Issay as he added, “I’ll leave it to Issay. Now you introduce Ra:IN!” before leaving the stage.
Issay “PATA-kun!” Issay called, but there was so sign of PATA. From the crowd, a female voice encouraged him shouting “Issay keep trying!” With a smile, Issay confessed, “I’ve never been in a live like this… where you call and they don’t come out!” Issay decided to try michiaki and the bassist at least came out cheerfully. Then he tried again to call PATA-this time leaving off the “kun.” It was cute to see PATA pop his head out the door as he said “Sorry to bother you,” before coming back out as shouts of “KAWAII!” escaped the crowd. With both bands on stage, Ra:IN said goodbye to the crowd with“20 century boy” and Issay on vocals, 90s rock and roll chaos on stage in an electrifying and somewhat terrifying performance. ROKKYUU look forward to our next frantic ride with Ra:IN and will be waiting, patiently, for future releases.
- METAL BOX
- Indicator to The Future
- Summer of Love
- WITHIN YOU
- 20 century boy