To celebrate the release of their February single Alain, umbrella held a short, three-stop release tour in major cities Tokyo, Nagoya, and Osaka, all shows titled chapter 2 with an additional subtitle per show. Osaka's was Memai, taking place at Kitahorie club vijon on April 9, with a packed floor of eager fans. Drummer Sho was the first to step foot onto the high stage to the SE music of “Lumiere,” followed shortly by bassist Hal and guitarist Shu. Vocalist Yui was the last to take his place behind the microphone stand, starting immediately into the set with guitar in hand.
The quartet delivered an overall heavy and thrashing set, warming up the crowd with the relatively mellow “Keihaku na hito”. Eventually, they were working their way up the intensity scale with numbers like “Skyfish” and “Dennou-Shounen- Speakeeer.” “Fake Underground” was especially effective at getting the crowd pumped up as hair flew everywhere, courtesy of energetic fans. Live-popular song “Witch?” transformed the venue into a dance club momentarily with its synthetic tunes. The crowd and band members leapt about before wrapping up the main set with recent single Alain. Yui encouraging everyone to add their voices to the chorus.
Returning to the stage for an encore, the members also took some time to share their thoughts. Sho kept his MC to simple and straightforward lines of "Thank you for everything on this tour, it's been a great one, we've really had a lot of fun recently." before passing the MC to Shu, followed by Hal, both speaking of rather unique encounters made during their tour as well as the particularly rainy day that the Tokyo live had been, earning chuckles from the crowd. As Hal continued to speak, Shu kept looking between the audience and the bassist, only for the initial expectation not to be met seemingly, as Hal uttered, “Oh yeah! I almost forgot!”
Fortunately, there was still time to set up for a continuing one-man live joke of Shu calling out "Ongaku saikou!"(Music is the best!) Apparently the addition of echoing sound-effects caught almost everyone unaware, sending waves of laughter through the crowd, as well as on stage. Last it was Yui's turn to address the crowd. "A lot has happened in six years, and recently there are a lot of visual kei bands disbanding and changing, but as long as we have fans like you, we can keep going strong. Please continue to support us! We'll have a good announcement for you at the end of the show, look forward to it!" The night finished on a cheerful note with "Haikei, Ame Biyori", featuring a bouncing, towel-twirling Yui in addition to each member contributing a line of vocals, as well a second play of "Alain".
Keihaku na hito
Hi [Jou] Kaidan
Kuroneko ga touru
Haikei, Ame Biyori
Special thanks to Chi-Yow Lee for this live report and photos, and for umbrella for the opportunity!