Anime Expo 2018 – Anisong Friday Concert

The concert opened up with May’n singing Chase the World to the screams of the fans. The upbeat tempo started the crowd dancing. May’n had her own crew of backup dancers along with the band. She greeted the fans in English. “Are you ready to make some noise? Come on, Los Angeles!” *fans cheer* It was awesome to see May’n feed off the energy of the fans. “There are so many people! I have alwys wanted to meet you guys. Tonight, let’s make a big memory. Let me hear your voice!”

Northern Cross was a softer number while You and Belief got us all dancing again. Diamond Crevasse is now a classic in our hearts and the cheers erupted when the opening of the song was heard.

    “This song is my precious song, because this song changed my life. I was able to meet everyone around the world. We may have different languages and countries, but music makes us one.”

Alas, we didn’t want to see May’n go, but Sayuri came on stage and started with Heikousen. She wore her iconic flowly blue patterned dress with her acoustic guitar. She was accompanied by a keyboardist, yet the melody is all her own. The large screens show the lyrics which shifted to the music. The simple sounds belies the strength and deepness of her voice. Sore wa Chiisana, the ending to Erased was met with alot of applause as was the start of Tsuki to Hanataba. But my favorite was Furaregai Girl, the song written by RADWIMPS’ Noda-san. The song was simple yet allowed Sayuri to express herself the best.

She only spoke in Japanese, but the fans cheered loudly as she quietly thanked us all for listening.

    “You guys understand Japanese? That’s so awesome! This was my first time singing in America. I would like to come again so please enjoy life and have fun! Let’s meet again! Thank you so much for today.”

The next singer was a favorite, Aimer whom I followed since her debut Rokutousei no Yoru, the ending in No.6. Unfortunately, she didn’t sing that, but she opened with the ending song to Gundam Unicorn, StarRingChild, followed by Brave Shine. The scenes for Fate/Stay Night was shown on the screens, accentuating the beauty of the song with the beauty of the fight scenes and the quiet moments. Her voice captured our senses. Ref:rain was a soft interlude in between the songs for Fate which are powerful and strong. A contrast to the deep alto melodies.

    “I’m very honored to sing in front of all you amazing people. Moments like this make me grateful and I hope I can live with you through music. I’ll definitely come back again. Arigatou gozaimashita! I would like to dedicate my last song to you!”

The moment we were all waiting for, the artist and legendary composer, Yuki Kajiura stepped on stage on the keyboard, accompanied by three famed singers from FictionJunction, KAORI (Oda Kaori), Joelle and Kaida Yuriko. It was amazing to hear them live. The original singers for the sounndtracks…it was an amazing experience. They opened with the iconic ‘the beginning of the end’ followed by Lancer and Assassin. Their voices drew us in and created a world that you can get lost in. Their overlapping voices and melodies are powerful. Truly, I could listen to them for the entire concert. Yuki Kajiura greeted the fans in really good English, not a surprise with the amount of English in her lyrics.

    “Hello, welcome to Anisong World Matsuri! Are you having fun? Great, I am sure that you are enjoying the beautiful song of three divas.”

The awesomeness didn’t end there. After Luminous Sword, Aimer came back out to join Yuki Kajiura for the hauntingly beautiful, ‘Hana no Uta’. It was sad for the concert to end as the singers came on stage for their final bows. I was hoping for another encore, but alas, the lights came on and the dream ended.

    Chase the World (Accel World OP)
    One In A Billion (Restaurant to Another World OP)
    Northern Cross (Macross Frontier)
    You (The Ancient Magus’ Bride OP)
    Belief (Taboo Tattoo OP)
    Diamond Crevasse (Macross Frontier)

    Heikousen (Scum’s Wish ED)
    Sore wa Chiisana Hikari no youna (Erased ED)
    Tsuki to Hanataba (Fate/Extra: Last Encore ED)
    Furaregai Girl
    Mikazuki (Rampo Kitan: Game of Laplace ED)

    StarRingChild (Mobile Suit Gundam Unicorn ED)
    Brave Shine (Fate/Stay Night: Unlimited Blade Works OP)
    Ref:rain (Koi Wa Ameagari no You ni ED)
    broKen NIGHT (Fate/Hollow Ataraxia OP)
    LAST STARDUST (Fate/Stay Night: Unlimited Blade Works)

    Yuki Kajiura
    the beginning of the end (Fate/Zero)
    Lancer and Assassin (Fate/Stay Night)
    Longing (Sword Art Online: Ordinal Scale)
    Key of the Twilight (.hack/SIGN)
    Yasashii Yoake (.hack/SIGN)
    Luminous Sword (Sword Art Online: Ordinal Scale)

    Aimer and Yuki Kajiura
    Hana No Uta (Fate/Stay Night)