Saturday, July 15, 2017

# 2017 # 22/06

Kim HyunJoong InnerCore @ Sendai Sun Plaza [22/06/2017]

I'm finally back, back here to see HyunJoong. I was so happy when I got to see one of his tour stop is so near to the date I'm flying over to see Saga there, and he is in Sendai, it's so close to Kooriyama I was like, I must go for it, especially since I've already gotten the JR pass to go out of Tokyo at all. So here I was, on the 22nd June, at Sun Plaza Sendai to the the man I've been loving and supporting for 10 years. It feels nostalgic even to think about how long is it.

Poster outside venue.
On the day itself, I took time to arrived to the venue. Arriving around half an hour before the live starts, mainly because I know I won't be buying goods and I don't know anyone from Japan Henecia fandom, so I took time browsing gift shops and then chilling in Starbucks instead.

I've got my ticket at second floor simply because I really didn't see much nice ones going for sales from the ground floor. I mean, most people would like to keep their first floor tickets don't they? There aren't much reselling for Sendai from what I gathered.

My View.
Second floor, the view was good though, since it is elevated seats. We all got a good view of him on stage, and at the later part of the live he even came close to see us all.  ( ̄▽ ̄) HyunJoongie, as usual, kind and sweet and caring, always wants to give all his fans more than we deserves. Like seriously, I feel pampered here attending his live, it's like we are all his princess and he just want us to have a good time in the most comfortable way. XD

The live started with Your Story, my favorite of his Japanese solo. He looks so handsome there, standing tall on the center stage, singing with his best ability. The hall has turned into a sea of green as how I'm used to it on any SS501 member's lives, I've never been to a live where all 5 members standing on one stage, that's still the biggest regret of my life. Lol. But yeah, here we are not talking about regrets right?

After a brief MC, the second song is Always and Forever, my favorite among SS501's Japanese songs. Well, it's that and Mermaid. Even though there was just HyunJoong singing it, somehow I almost cried listening to it. It's one of the song I've never thought I'll get to listen to at a live, and because I love it so much, I've always wanted to listen to it live.

Seriously, it was pretty much an emotional live for me, cause there's so much uncertainties around HyunJoong's status, after everything that happened, and then followed by the uncertainties on my opportunity to ever see SS501 together as one ever again in my life *nods* This live made me emotional. And the setlist is definitely not helping. Thank God he has not sing Let Me Be The One or Green Peas on Sendai, else I would have greeted him with a tear streaked face after live there. *laughs*

Leader showed some dance moves on Please, the crowd cheered, and on that moment I found that I forgot most of the dance moves for that song which I've spent months learning several years back. I remember some key movements still though. Hahahaha. This is not about me though, it's about HyunJoong, and how awesome he looks dancing and singing. ( ̄▽ ̄) There was a note of emotion in the way he's singing that song though, I'm pretty sure. It was very a very beautiful performance.

There's a friendly way during his MC the closeness to the fans, this is really a guy who enjoys singing and just wants to share his every thoughts to his fans.

Break Down tuned up the live energy by several notches. He sang the Korean version which is way more familiar for me, thank God. But yeah, the fans response isn't one that I'm familiar with, not like it's too hard to learn (I mean, in compare to learning some complicated furi from bands I do not know XD). He showed some dance move here as well as in Unbreakable, I look forward to see the full fledged dancing live he said he wants to host one day.

It has been a while since I've attend any Kpop event and it kinda surprise when there's a short break where Joongie went back stage to change his clothes *laughs*

After the change there was a series of fun songs, started with Do You Like That, Beauty Beauty, follow by Lucky Guy. HyunJoong came down to the audience from stage as he sang Lucky Guy, walking among the crowd, you can't not admire how obedience Japanese fans are, they never run forward to him or reaching out to grab him or anything at all. They just cheer, happy, and when HyunJoong came near to them, they try to reach out and see if he would shake their hands. XD He showed us all plenty of cute smiles, so adorable.

It seems like he like Sendai, saying that the crowd are very enthusiastic. Noticing that there are guy fans he acknowledged them. One of them on the first row suddenly went like "I love you!" to him, to which he replied "I love you too." *laughs* He even blushed a little when he said that, and work that into a song. So so adorable.

More adorable is when he found a cute kid among the crowd, and then he ask him if he knows which group he belongs to (Joongie divided us into groups, for later, so we can response to him during a song). Then he move on teasing the kid, like asking if the kid would like to give him a kiss (before singing Kiss Kiss) (I know you're craving for one from the kids all the time, pssh Joongie). He then proceeded to tease him if he's too shy to give one. Hahahahaha! Oh and there was even one point where the kid has fell asleep and he was like "how could he be sleeping? Wake him up! I'll kick you! (in a joking way)" so adorable. then he just added like, "nah, he must be tired isn't he?" to his mom. So sweet, he's always there to consider other's feelings.

The next set of songs are Kiss Kiss (he showed some dance moves over there) Gentlemen, Distance. He made us do the dance to Kiss Kiss, throughout live on various MC he kept asking everyone to do it, and then teased us about it when we didn't do it that well (playful HJ ╰(*´︶`*)╯), and yeah, by everyone I mean even his bassist and the keyboardist. He was having so much fun up there teasing everyone. ( ̄▽ ̄)

Worth mentioning was the little clip where HJ explain to us why he named this tour "Inner Core". He said that (might not be 100% correct translation, since I've saw the clip a while back) there are some strength in this world that's not visible but it's stronger than any strength in this world, and that's how the core is. He is very grateful to us who didn't leave him during the tough time he faced, and he really wanted us to know that.

I'm Your Man was very touching, but Mermaid was really the one that had me almost crying. I've always love that song, Mermaid, I think its a very good song from SS501, and it is yet another song which I never thought I'll get to listen to at live, even if it is only the solo version by HyunJoongie.

I screamed when the music for One More Time started. Not sure why I reacted that way, but maybe it's one of the touching song. I am glad to note that was not the only one screaming. I think it was a special song? I don't think he done it on any other stops. It was just a short one, he just sang one part, like first verse and then chorus, which to me is good enough. He said it's not really his songs, but SeungJo's song *laughs* the way he laughter was just so adorable too. *rolls*

HyunJoong asked us if there are any songs we'd like to listen, he (jokingly) says that he'll prepare it for the next live. Fans requested Save Today, and Deja Vu. The band playing for HyunJoong said they can play Deja Vu that day. "It's not karaoke you know?" HyunJoong told us off jokingly, but at the same time he confirm with the band "Is it really OK?" he kept asking. He also told us we should thank the guy who requested it, at the end he really did it, he sang Deja Vu.

Deja Vu, my favorite song from SS501 of all time, of all time, like, I love other songs but Deja Vu is the one I really really love regardless what songs they release before or after that I still love that song, and HyunJoong sang it, surprisingly, he did not do the same song any other lives before (and hopefully) nor after... I'm not sure, I did not follow his setlist for every live, but I'm pretty sure Sendai is the only venue he did Deja Vu.

The crowd went wild on that song, it seems like I'm not the only one loving it (of course, Deja Vu is a great song). Even though only one person performing it, he pulled it off wonderfully. By the way, he did a rock version. XD

Stay Here follow, I love the song for its easy melody. It's one of the new song from his new album, 風車 <re:wind>.

By the way, I've not talk about his new single/ mini album did I? I love the lyrics of the songs inside this album, especially 風車's, the lyrics is so meaningful. If you have not look into it yet, please do so. There are even English translation out there.

今でも of course, is one of the beautiful song. I always feel that HyunJoong can sing these slow pop-rock songs very well, not to say that I don't like him doing the dance numbers, they are beautiful too, and he can dance very very well, but I think his voice can carry very well with softer melody, and his voice filled with so much emotions it could touch any souls it came across.

HyunJoong, such a sweet soul, it makes me wonder again and again that night, how do we deserve such amazingly sweet idiot, seeing that we have stood the whole night, he just went like "Don't you all feel tired standing the whole night? (Since you guys has been) standing since the start, you must be very tired isn't it? Why don't you sit down? While I'm talking you can sit, you know? Please sit, save your energy for later." (I kinda get this whole thing from the Japanese translator. Actually I understand most of his speech when it's translated to Japanese, which feels nice. XD )

He kind of make us sit through his next song Wake Me Up, another song from his latest album 風車 <re:wind>. And we all just settle to waving the light stick in time with the music and just enjoy his singing there. ( ̄▽ ̄)

A brief break later, he came back with Timing, most of us stood and (at least in my row, us few) dance to the tune again.

Hot Sun brought around another hot session, he also sang Heat, B.I.N.G.O. a lot of jumping and cheering along with the music this time.

During the last MC, he carefully thank us all for attending the live, the speech mostly went like, "If it is not for everyone here attending tonight's live in Sendai, it will not be held at all." He also said that our attendance has given him so much happiness. It was a very warm speech.

The closing song of the night was 風車 (Windmill). Very fitting after the heart warming speech, it was very beautiful. And the curtain closed, end of the live.

That's when everyone started shouting encore (the chant soon changed to "Kim Hyun Joong"), loud and unison. Encore in Japan was awesome as usual, no one wants to leave just like that, no one wants to just end the live that way. And of course, HyunJoong promised to come up to 2nd floor to see us before he goes definitely indicate that there will be an encore. And so we chant, "Kim Hyun Joong, Kim Hyun Joong, Kim Hyun Joong..." and then...

Intro to Do You Like That starts, and there was scream from the left side of second floor. Looking over there we so the Alien Prince, accompanied by 2 guards and the camera men following behind. The screams grew louder but the fans stays by their seats. He took his time walking around to greet everyone at the 2nd floor, full of smiles and waving so friendly at all of us. And when the feeling is right, he didn't hesitate to show us some sexy dance move either. ( ̄▽ ̄) cutie.

It took him the whole song of Do You Like That to finish going around second floor, and then during Lucky Guy he went around at the first floor, before going back up the stage, and perform us Kiss Kiss next. The atmosphere was pretty high, thanks to the bouncing and dancing someone there. The last song closing the encore was Goodbye, what a fitting one, kudos to the one planning the setlist.

We had お見送り (something like... send off?) after the live. All the fans stood around the space forming 3 sides of a rectangle, and we waited for HyunJoong for about 15 minutes? 20minutes? I wasn't quite sure already. Finally I caught sight of him from inside the building, wearing the yellow long sleeves shirt he wore on rehearsal early that morning. He walked around, taking time to say bye to all of us, bright smiles on his face until the end. And he went back inside, apparently he's staying in the same hotel (duh, I've suspected it. They always stays at - or near - where the lives is held.)

Some of the below moments I couldn't place where they came in, mostly during breaks or MC, but it's so sweet/ memorable/ adorable that I have to put it in here.

During one of the short break, the fans sitting to my left told me that seeing how the staffs are talking to those on the first row, HyunJoong might come up to our floor at one point of time. I suspected it as well, and feeling excited about it.

During one of the song, there was a loud bang accompany with the fireworks, HyunJoong was so concern about it scaring us that he immediately asking us if we are OK after the song. XD

Speaking of bang, there was another (softer ones) when they shot out confettis, this happens during encore I think. The color in Sendai stop is pink. I didn't get one though, sad thing about being on 2nd floor.

More than a few times HyunJoong pulled pranks on the fans, saying surprising things and then he laughed himself. He was just so adorable.

There was a lot of moments in between we see HyunJoong jumping and dancing and shouting happily not unlike a little child, it was a really precious scene to see. I'm so glad to have witnessed that, to still see him well and playful on stage, even after all that he went through. For many moment when I was watching him, I was really thinking how glad and proud I am to be loving this man, to still be able to call myself a fan, to know that I'm still here for him. It has been 10 years, can you believe it? Can you believe loving someone for 10 years? It's just... So long, I don't even know I'm someone who can love one person for so long. *laughs*

Then again, some man are worthy of someone loving them for so long, probably even more.

Enough of my rambling, I hope you had fun reading the blog above, I know it is freaking long and windy and I'm sorry about that (though at the same time, not sorry). Let me know if you have any comment/ feedback! Next post would be about A9 again, and my experience being at their in-store talk event. ( ̄▽ ̄)

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