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Samantha - New York City - 25

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  • Live Report: exist†trace @ Hiro Ballroom on Monday, March 19, 2012 @ 10:10 PM
    Disclaimer: I'll try not to fangirl all over the place
    On Sunday, March 18th, I went to Hiro Ballroom to see exist†trace live for the very first time. Ever since I started listening to them, I have developed a girl crush on Omi, the lead guitarist. But I think the band as a whole is amazing; to be the very few all-female bands in Visual Kei, a male-dominated subculture, and still have the amount of success they have now. So I was super excited when I heard that they were coming to NYC and to add to that: THEY'RE HAVING AN AUTOGRAPH SESSION!

    Here was my outfit of the day:

    Shirt: Andrew Charles
    Cardigan: Sex Pot Revenge
    Pants: Tripp NYC
    Shoes: Bodyline rocking horse shoes (I actually wore my Doc Martens to the show but I was too lazy to go downstairs to grab them and put them on for pictures)
    Accessories: Ruki replica lock necklace bought at Takeshita dori, offbrand Skull ring, Sex Pot Revenge Stud ring

    Makeup of the day
    Anyway, I had dragged my little brother along to get me an extra autograph for my best friend since the band were not going to the West coast.
    My brother looks very happy to be there, obviously.
    Reading a live report for the Boston show, I expected much less people at the venue when I got there at around 6PM (Doors opened at 7PM). But there was about 50 people already on line waiting.
    VIP stamp
    Someone drew this for Omi's birthday and had people on the line sign  the card
    Then they called for VIP ticket holders to form a separate line since we get to go in before everyone else. Also, VIPs get exist†trace buttons and a signed setlist! 
    VIP presents~
    I noticed at the merchandise booth, it says if you buy over $100 worth of goods, you get a picture with the band! Of course, I wasn't going to miss that chance so I got two shirts (one for me and one for my best friend), a towel and the Ambivalent Symphony album. 
    Hiro Ballroom is a really oriental-centric venue (as if you haven't noticed already by the name). The standing area was dark, the only light source was many dimly light lanterns. The stage was bordered with a Shinto torii and a lion head (the ones they use during Chinese New Year) was placed above the torii with a smoke machine installed inside the mouth. Pretty cool.
    I, of course, stuck by the Omi's side of the stage. I started out in the third row during the opening bands and ended up being in the second before exist†trace's set.

    The first opening band was Charetta, a band with a female vocalist. I thought they were pretty good and the vocalist definitely had a great set of lungs! (Pardon the picture for this band; I was taking it with my iTouch because I was too lazy to find my camera in the dark abyss of my bag)
    The next opening band was called August Infinity. To be honest, I don't think they were anything special. They're pretty much any other screamo band.

    Then finally exist†trace was up! They came out with their DAYBREAK outfits and of course started with their latest single, Daybreak ~13月の色彩~. Seeing Omi that close to me was really surreal; she was literally less than a yard away from me. Standing up high on that stage, the spotlights shining behind her made it seem like she was some kind of God(ess). Jyou was really high-powered that night and it was amazing to see her live in action. Miko and Naoto only came over to my side a couple times but Miko was super cute and did a little wave every time she went back to her side of the stage. Mally was always smiling behind her drums. During an MC, Jyou talked about the Touhoku disaster that occurred a year ago and asked us to please donate at the merch table. 
    I'm sorry, Jyou, I keep taking unflattering close-ups of you
    Smiling Mally~

    The song that I was really hoping for them to play was リトル・メアリーと美しき憎しみのドナウ, mainly to see them all in masks and also Omi dancing with Miko. I was surprised that Miko had a really pretty singing voice. She should really sing more in songs! Omi and Miko's dance was really cute and sweet; Omi looked like a handsome Prince Charming.
    Omi & Miko dancing
    Isn't she just dashing? 
    Afterwards, they played KISS IN THE DARK, where Jyou stripped down into a mini-dress and sang sultrily to the song. And at one point, Jyou asked Omi if she wanted a drink in English.
    Jyou's so skinny~
    The only thing I was annoyed by was some male fan in front of me during the whole set. I'm guessing he's Japanese since he knew the furitsuke to the songs. I mean it's cool that you're so passionate but when you're continuously jumping and stepping on my boots, you need to calm yourself. My brother swore that the guy was crying at one point.

    They thought the torii + lion head combo is cool too

    During the encore, Jyou made Miko speak a bit in English. So Miko started promoting the new album saying "We release new album on...May...23rd...Virgin...Please get it!" Jyou responded with "Good job!" That was adorable.

    Finally, they ended it with 終わりのない世界 and I have to say that it was a really fun live. And it has been a while since I have been to a live...which was Versailles in Akasaka BLITZ when I was in Japan.
    After the set, the autograph session started! I was debating for a while if I should speak to Omi in Japanese or English but figured she'd probably understand me better in Japanese. So the whole time on the line, I was practicing in my head what to say. 

    Of course, Omi turned out to be the first seat at the autograph table. So I gave her the CD booklet and she signed it. She passed it to Naoto and reached her hand out to shake mine. Stuttering and my heart racing, I said to her "
    乙魅さんは一番かっこいと思います。"(translation: I think Omi-san is the coolest) I was so scared that she wouldn't understand me but she smiled while still grasping my hand tightly, "ありがとうございます。また会いましょうね。"(translation: Thank you. Let's meet again) She might have said something else too but at that point, I was ready to melt and faint so I wasn't paying attention. I felt like it was the longest I have ever heard Omi speak because during interviews she usually keeps to herself.

    But I didn't even realize she was holding on to my hand for that long until Naoto was staring because she had already finished signing and passed the booklet on to Jyou. I gave Omi one final small bow and went off to Naoto. Naoto always creeped me out a bit...I mean when the band first started, she was so pretty then BAM she started looking like what she does now. But she gave me a really warm smile as she shook my hand. Then off to Jyou, she shook my hand with both hands and thanked me for coming to the show. Miko shook my hand and said thank you with a big smile. Same with Mally. After Omi, I could only whisper a small "ありがとう" to each of the members because I was still trying to process everything that just happened. 

    I had to wait until they were done with the autograph session before I could take a picture with them. So my brother and I were lounging at the benches until they called for people with the photo sticker. 

    So here's the picture of me with exist†trace. Please pardon my dork face. 

    After the picture, I thanked the band for coming to New York.
    At that point, I was really expecting to wake up. I have always had dreams where I would meet people who I see as idols and wake up to realize it was all a dream. But this picture will always remind me that that day was real and I had such a great time. Corny, much?

    exist†trace, 本当にありがとうございます!ニューヨークでたのしかった!またね~

    EDIT: Since it is March 20th now, I just want to say HAPPY BIRTHDAY, OMI! お誕生日おめでとうございます!

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    Blogger Winda Tiodang said on March 20, 2012 at 12:29 AM  

    u look so cute in every picture ^^ hehehe...come visit my blog and i think we should follow each other!! ^^

    Blogger luthien said on March 20, 2012 at 7:47 PM  

    awwww, I envy you... .-.
    *want them in eu*
    btw, do you have bigger pic of Naoto? if yes, please, send me it to my email - luthien.tasartir@hotmail.com
    please! ._.

    Blogger VFcompany | the virtual fantasy said on March 20, 2012 at 9:11 PM  


    Exist trace F.B.

    Blogger KUROWonderland said on March 21, 2012 at 10:36 AM  

    Ahh, sorry~ Naoto was always on the other side of the stage so that was the only good picture I have of her.

    Blogger KUROWonderland said on March 21, 2012 at 6:22 PM  

    Thank you~ & sure!

    Blogger deslee said on June 28, 2012 at 8:17 PM  

    Those shoes are awesome!
    How hard are they to walk in?

    Blogger KUROWonderland said on July 3, 2012 at 12:06 AM  

    Thanks~ They weren't hard to walk in at all...they were just too small on me XD

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