December 28th 2017 marked the third and final show in Babyraids JAPAN’s Emotional IdolRock Fes. series of concerts.
We arrived about half an hour before the official doors opening at 16:00. There were already many fans lining up to buy merchandise while others patiently queued up in their assigned sections waiting for staff to call out their numbers to enter. This orderly type of entry may be something completely foreign to those who are used to the assigned seating, bum rush the doors type of concert entry. So allow me to digress for a few moments to explain.
For this particular concert there were several groupings of tickets. VIP A and B and then general admission A and B. Each ticket had a number assigned to it (i.e. VIP B 12 or A 20) and you have to pay attention to the venue staff calling out to the groups of concert goers to enter the building. If you are lucky that person has a megaphone, otherwise you have get real close to hear them screaming out who is being let in.
Given that the main viewing area of Shin Kiba Studio Coast is standing room only VIP’s get the prime spots and then everyone else gets behind them based on what section and number is on their ticket.
With all that in mind we had general admission A4 and A5. That meant we were right behind the final row of VIP’s and had an excellent view of the stage. It also meant we were right in the thick of the action and there was very little wiggle room with so many people jostling for the best viewing position.
Shortly after 17:00 PENGUIN RESEARCH took the stage with Babyraids JAPAN to perform an opening collaboration of Babyraids to get the crowd hyped up. After that Babyraids JAPAN left the stage and PENGUIN RESEARCH continued with a short 5 song set of their works to properly open the concert. My exposure to them outside of their work with Babyraids JAPAN has been very minimal and after their set ended I was left with a good impression of their music.
The folks around me were also into them, with some getting their early wota cardio in while rocking out. They set the tone for what was to come later in the evening perfectly warming up the crowd for the main event.
I believe they would appeal to those who lean towards the pop end of the J-Rock spectrum. So if that is your particular area of interest you may want to invest some time in checking PENGUIN RESEARCH out.
Their set went just over 30 minutes and after a short break they returned to the stage with Babyraids JAPAN to much fanfare. Babyraids’ opening song was Yoake Brand New Days. That song indicated the pace the concert would be at and they went through a mix of singles, album cuts and b-sides that spanned their discography up to and including their 2017 EP THE BRJ over the 2.5 hours they performed.
To say that there were very few slow moments in this concert is an understatement. It started in high gear and stayed there until midway into the concert where an acoustic version of Days was performed to temporarily slow the tempo down. After that it was back into high gear until they ended the first part of the show with Bokura wa Koko ni iru.
The encore featured a 2-song performance of Hashire Hashire and SMILE. Normally one would expect the house lights to come on after with everyone getting ushered to the exit. Nope, there was a second encore with a second performance of Yoake Brand New Days. It was a nice surprise that left the crowd with a euphoric high. The official end of the concert was a group picture with the crowd and then the playing of a short video montage of Babyraids JAPAN’s 2017 tour journey.
Then the house lights came on and the VIP ticket holders were directed to a special area for their after party/meet and greet with Babyraids JAPAN. The general admission people were sent in another direction to exit out of the building.
The Babyraids JAPAN concert experience was incredibly fun and engaging. They certainly kept their fans moving with the way their set list was structured as the energy intensified with each song. You will not leave their show without feeling physically drained. (In a good way of course)
Also, they are much better with a live band behind them rather than with a standard set of backing tracks playing behind them. There was more room to improvise musically and the members of Babyraids JAPAN interacted well with the members of PENGUIN RESEARCH. It made for a livelier overall atmosphere.
The last thing to make note of is that their concerts with a band are incredibly loud. That is not necessarily a bad thing but if you are one who has sensitive hearing you may want to invest in some good musicians ear plugs to enjoy the show without going deaf.
If you have only seen Babyraids JAPAN at idol festivals or Japanese cultural events overseas it is highly recommended you see a full concert of theirs (such as this one) to really appreciate what type of show they can put on. You will not regret it.
Babyraids JAPAN Emotional IdolRock Fes 2017 at Shin Kiba Studio Coast – December 28, 2017 Set List
M01. 夜明けBrand New Days
M04. FOREVER MY FRIEND
M06. ぶっちゃけRock’n はっちゃけRoll
M08. Baby Kiss
M11. デイズ（Acoustic ver.）
WEN. 夜明けBrand New Days