LIVE REPORT: ACME's FIRST SOLO LIVE IN THE US (Long Beach, California) [07/02/19]

ACME in LA [07/02/19]

On the 2nd of July 2019 on a corner in Long Beach, California, a small line of people were waiting to enter Toxic Toast Record’s venue to watch ACME’s first live performance (outside a convention) in the US. The line consisted of ACME fans excited to see them perform and Visual Kei fans, eagerly waiting to see what ACME is all about. Once in the venue, you’ll immediately find yourself right next to the small stage. The venue itself was surprisingly small and set up for an intimate gathering.

ACME in LA [07/02/19]
ACME in LA [07/02/19]

As people started to slowly come in, some found their spots by the stage and others went for the merchandise stall across the room at the back.  The merchandise included band shirts for this summer’s & from previous lives, the band poster, towels, stickers, bracelets, their “Rotten Orange” lip balm, and even CHISA’s perfume!

With the crowd gathered by the stage, there is no barrier seen blocking off anyone from reaching out to whatever is on the stage, whether it be the instruments or people. There was also no barrier separating the VIPs (who paid an additional $50 to the regular price of $30), but people were respectful and conscious to give their fellow concert-goers space. There was no pushing and shoving and it lasted throughout the night’s ordeal. And no matter where you stood, you got a good view of the stage and the performers.
RAIF - ACME in LA [07/02/19]

The show opened with RAIF playing an electrifying set. The crowd seemed to be a little surprised with the act, as it is unexpected from a Visual Kei or a rock concert.  RAIF, himself, commented earlier that it was his first time opening for a genre that was new to him, but he was set on having fun no matter what. Towards the end of the set, the crowd was more receptive and started to enjoy the party vibes RAIF has brought. After this, Rubab of Fake Star & Ian from Power Level then shared their welcome remarks and amazingly announced that pictures and video-taking were allowed! That in itself shocked the crowd because how often do Japanese concerts allow that? In any case, it made the crowd even more pumped up! And when ACME is introduced to the stage, dramatic Opera music played and the crowd cheered excitedly for the band. 
CHISA - ACME in LA [07/02/19]

As CHISA’s deep voice filled the room and the crowd started to dance. The band wore their white outfit from their Mononoke Requiem concept. CHISA in his flowy kimono getup was mesmerizing as he twirled & swayed in the middle of the stage. Some people came prepared and pulled out folding fans which they used to dance with and even cool off SHOGO who signaled to them to fan him as he played the guitar and jumped enthusiastically all throughout the show, especially when it came to their song, Zesshou Ouka. RIKITO played the bass while trying to seduce the crowd with his muscular arms. HAL skillfully played on the drums, going as hard as he can. For a small crowd, the energy of the live was pretty high. So much hair was flying around and heads were banging to beats. 

SHOGO - ACME in LA [07/02/19]
RIKITO - ACME in LA [07/02/19]
HAL - ACME in LA [07/02/19]

ACME in LA [07/02/19]
One of the most memorable moments during the live was during Tebanashi Rider when CHISA signaled for a mosh pit to form. The fans seemed reluctant but tried due to CHISA’s persistence (who can say no to that amount of charisma?). You can see the shy, yet smiling faces of the few fans that attempted to gently thrash around. And as soon as the mini and non-violent mosh pit started, it ended with the fans giggling together at their cute attempt to please CHISA. Unlike the expectations of ACME, the crowd consisted more of females instead of the energetic fanboys they have previously encountered in the anime conventions they have recently performed for- which they have shared in the interview with VKH, here. But through and through, the fans still definitely enjoyed themselves!

CHISA - ACME in LA [07/02/19]

 The setlist follows:
1.       Maguro Kaitai Chainsaw (マグロ解体チェーンソ)
2.       Trick x Trap
3.       CryWolf
4.       Last One Show (ラストワンショ)
5.       Mononoke Requiem (モノノケレクイエム)
6.       Houkago no Shiiku (放課後の飼育)
7.       Paradox
8.       Bari Zougen (罵詈雑言)
10.   Gekiyami Serenade (激ヤミセレナーデ)
12.   Tebanashi Rider (テバナシライダー)
13.   Zesshou Ouka (絶唱謳歌)

ACME in LA [07/02/19]

At the end of the set, ACME not only gifted the fans with an encore, but they also came back on stage for amazing fan service. They ran a drawing, that consisted of fans buying merch and, depending on how much they’ve spent, they received tickets to win a number of things from the band. In front of the crowd, the band signed and gave away the setlist they used, picks, drumsticks, and even the batter head of the drums! Right after the drawing, the band went straight to the back to start the meet and greet. 

The handlers had a professional set up at the back including bright lights that illuminated the faces of the VIP ticket holders and the band members nicely for the meet and greet. For everyone who had a chance to meet them, they spoke to the band, got their autograph and went home with a wonderful photo with their choice of seating arrangement; the fans were able to choose which two band members would sit beside them for the photo. Some of the fans were able to shake the hands of the band members and even get hugs from them. There was an option to take extra photos with the band via polaroid camera (cheki), which two Japanese fans took full advantage of, having paid $25 per shot, they had ten photos each with varying poses which were fun to watch. The band members themselves were very gracious and kind to their fans and despite just finishing playing their own concert, they had so much energy to interact with everyone that it lasted until midnight.
ACME in LA [07/02/19]
ACME in LA [07/02/19]

The night felt amazing to new and old fans, as it is rare to be in such close proximity with such a talented & generous band in such a long yet short period of time. In addition, the handlers of the event were very kind and accommodating to the fans, as well. It may have been a smaller event, but what went down almost seems unheard of in any of your typical concerts. If you weren’t present that night, you just missed out on one of the most fun and intimate Visual Kei/J-Rock parties ever. And it seems that the fan base for ACME will only grow bigger and bigger in the US. Hopefully, the band won’t change their ways for their next live here and that the fans will cherish that wonderful night & continue to support them. And if you aren’t already like the newly converted ACME fans that evening, check out all their links below.

Check out our INTERVIEW with ACME, here.
ACME in LA [07/02/19]
Thanks for reading!
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