As the name suggests, ＜SIX NINE WARS –Bokura no Nanakagetsukan Sensou-＞ is a seven-month-long live concert project, the longest tour in MUCC’s history. It began in March and features a different theme every month for a total of six different themes containing nine shows each. The tour will come to a close at Yoyogi National Stadium First Gymnasium, on September 23.
Volume 1 of this live concert project ＜Episode 1. “Mu P LIVES” FC Gentei Live & Member Produce Live＞ saw a different member produce their concerts every show. ＜Episode 2. “VS” Ishukakutou 2 Man Tour＞ was a battle of the bands style tour which featured a band from different genre every show. Bands including the telephones, THE BACK HORN and STRAIGHTENER, all of whom are popular rock festival acts went toe to toe on stage during ＜Episode 2＞.
Vol. 3 of the tour is the current ＜Episode 3. “Thanatos & Thanatos”. The tour, which began on May 1, at Zepp Nagoya is a continuation to the 2-day tour ＜Hypnos & Thanatos＞, which took place in 2013. The tour containing the names Hypnos (god of sleep) and Thanatos (god of death) featured a first day with a setlist comprised mainly of slower, more melodic tunes symbolized by the theme Hypnos and a second day with a setlist comprised mainly of the more “extreme” tunes as symbolized by the theme Thanatos. With this pattern as template, this time’s “Thanatos & Thanatos” is comprised only of extreme, aggressive tunes.
The lights went down in the heat-filled floor of Kawasaki Club CITTA’ just after 7:00PM, the scheduled opening time. SATOChi, YUKKE, Miya, Tasuro step onto the stage greeted with a deafening cheer that got louder as they all set up camp at their individual positions. Since ＜Episode 3. “Thanatos & Thanatos”＞ will be held until the show at HEAVEN’S ROCK Kumagaya VJ-1 at the end of May, we’d like to refrain from talking about the setlist in detail. As has been mentioned before, their stage calls forth an angel of death that is capable of turning the warm heat of spring into a burning fire.
As guitarist Miya turns up the gear on his guitar, the sheer power leads to a malfunction with the guitar. Staff members constantly had to fix the position of SATOChi’s microphone set at his drumset. The band was literally shaking up the place. Knowing that this all happened within the first two songs of the show should give you an idea of what kind of performance was taking place this day.
This day featured a diverse setlist ranging from songs like “Suimin” from their early days and “You & I” from their more recent releases. All songs were “aggressive”, but not two in the very same way. There was Earth-shaking heaviness, sprinting 2-beats, mind-boggling repetitive guitar riffs, with elements of metal, alternative, screamo, hardcore, ska and more.
The song “WateR”, for which Miya switched to a Stratocaster, was an extremely good match for the venue, which also functions as a music club. Miya explained during the interview at the time of the song’s release, “We made this song with the image of a man-played dance music in mind”. The repetitive phrases and beats indeed make for a dance rock song that coerces your body to move. The minimally arranged tune juxtaposed to the high-volume, fast-paced tracks drove the crowd to a dance. The space between the notes exemplifies Miya’s guitar riffs and YUKKE’s slaps.
More than the song selection and the band’s instrumentation skills, what made the show so much more aggressive was the sheer power that emanated from the four members. The band sprinted through their approximately 20-song setlist containing high-calorie-burning songs with close to zero MC’s. Although the theme of the show is “aggression”, what was most shocking was the toughness of the band who could keep going in for a full hour-and-a-half show without taking any breaths in between.
The surprise came during the encore. It had been previously announced that this day would feature a shooting for a special video on MUCC’s official website. As Tatsuro asked, “Can we call for some help”, the character Mucc from Ponkickies appears on stage. This was the first time since ＜HALLOWEEN PARTY 2013＞ at Kobe WORLD HALL for MUCC to share the stage with Mucc. The jam-packed floor waved in excitement.
The surprise didn’t end there. During the middle of a song, Gachapin makes an entrance through the door on the audience’s side. The two characters step onto the stage and begin jumping and throwing their fists up into the air to the sound of “ENDER ENDER”, leading to a vicioud “Funassyi-level” headbanging. This day’s stage is featured on Gachapin’s official blog, “Gachapin Nikki”. According to him, “We all engaged in a circle mosh and head banging! I’ll be there again!” An off-shot with the band is also available for viewing within the blog.
The 2-and-a-half-hour show (including encores) came to a close full of sweat and smiles. MUCC will be invading Kanto next for ＜Episode 3. “Thanatos & Thanatos”＞. In addition to the 3-man, battle of the bands tour ＜SIX NINE WARS –Bokura no Nanakagetsukan Sensou- Episode 4. “TRIANGLE”＞, which will begin in June, the band is set to release their new single “ENDER ENDER” on May 28, and their new original album “THE END OF THE WORLD” on June 25.
Coverage & Text: BARKS Editorial Department / Photography: Takahiro Kugino