ANiUPa!! Concert Review: Six Anisong Acts For the Price of One!

  • ANiUTa Live 2017 “ANiUPa!!”
  • Saturday, May 13th, 2017
  • Daiichi Taiikukan, Yoyogi, Tokyo

Intro: Anisong Singers Arrive to Light Up Our Worlds!

ANiUTa is the world’s first all you can listen/stream anime songs only app pioneered in Japan! The app was officially released on March 24th, 2017. In order to celebrate the launch, the company behind ANiUTa put on a live concert featuring four major anisong artists and teased that more could possibly be coming! You know this had to have otaku stark raving mad for tickets and if attendance was any indication of how the app sales and concert sales are doing, ANiUTa may have hit a gold mine.

One of the best parts of this concert was that not one, not two, but four major anisong artists hit the stage throughout the evening! May’n, Wake Up, Girls!, Aqours, and ALI PROJECT all teased the audience and then gave us what we all wanted: the very first ANiUPa!! live concert.

May’n debuted way back in 2005 and started to release singles, but her big break was when she sang the ending song Diamond Crevasse for Macross Frontier. From there May’n has went on to release single after single for various popular anime such as “Kimi Shinitamou Koto Nakare” for Shangri-La, “Scarlet Ballet” from Hidan no Aria, “Chase the World” for Accel World, and more!

The second artist to perform was Wake Up, Girls!. WUG as they are known sometimes, are a group of seven adorable girls who also work as seiyuu and were formed from the 2nd Anisong Vocal Audition in 2012. From there, the girls went on releasing music and were even given their own anime of the same name in 2013. The series has been greenlit for a second season, after a slew of movies were released over the past few years, for some time later this year. Even if you have not seen their anime, you may know them from the ED from Shakunetsu no Takkyuu Musume “Bokura no Frontier” or the OP to super funny and currently on air gem Renai Boukun The song is called “Koi? de Ai? de Boukun Desu!”

The third of four artists is the stunningly popular Aqours from Love Live! Sunshine!! series. Yes, the girls who also voice the nine popular characters came too to promote the series and sing what are arguably, the most popular anisongs on the market. You may know them from their obvious OP and ED from the ubiquitous Love Live! Sunshine!! series that aired last summer, and the sequel coming this fall.

The fourth artist teased was anisong industry veteran ALI PROJECT. ALI PROJECT has been around for decades, yes we said it right, and has produced songs for countless anime. Some major series to note are Rozen Maiden, Code Geass, Fate/Extra, Katanagatari, Kurogane no Linebarrels, Noir, and more!

The venue was set just down the street from the very trendy Takeshita-dori in Harajuku at The Daiichi Taiikukan next to Yoyogi Park. The stadium boasts that it can hold 13,243 attendees at once, and we had to be just about at capacity that night as almost every single seat was full. And as for the people in attendance, people from all ages came! Young and old, men and women, and there had to be at least 30 flower displays, if not more, from various companies offering praise for the concert! The seats were jampacked though as we made our way to our own.

honey's anime character
Maaaaaaaaaaan! Did you see all of the Aqours outfits? I NEED THEM!

honey's anime character
So many people…. Where do I even go? Oh hello…. Who are you? Are you Wake Up, Girls?

Performance: A Kickass Multi-Artist Concert to Remember!

If there is one thing to be said about May’n, the girl can belt out a note like no one’s business. She was so pumped with charisma when she came out. She came out swinging with “Kimi Shinitamou Koto Nakare” from Hidan no Aria and the crowd went wild! Looking cute in her stylish miniskirt and top, she dove right into “ViViD” from Blood Lad after that. The crowd was going wild as she emceed briefly before continuing.

“Northern Cross”, from Macross Frontier, continued and then “Belief” was up next from Taboo Tattoo. Complete with flashing lights, the crowd was loving it! The best part too? Since these are anime songs, they played the opening sequences on a large screen right behind her as she performed! Talk about a front row seat! The fans were going wild changing their light sticks to match the mood of the songs and when May’n said it was time to go, the disappointment was audible. She stepped off stage, the lights dimmed… and she came back to sing her smash hit “Diamond Crevasse” from Macross Frontier! Complete with a spotlight only on her, all lightsticks were turned to blue and moved rhythmically to the beat.

Afterwards she said goodbye to fans pleading her to not go, but soon, their despair was gone as Wake Up, Girls! took to the stage! One by one, the girls introduced themselves, and one by one the lights changed in color in the audience and on the stage. They opened immediately with "7 Girls War" followed by "Shoujo Koukyoukyoku". Some adorable emceeing followed and then of course they had to do their hit "Beyond the Bottom" from their own movie.

The highlight though, for sure was their first ever live performance of "Koi? de Ai? de Boukun Desu!" from Renai Boukun! The best part too? The lovely tyrant herself Guri descended as Yoshino Aoyama mentioned that she was the voice of the character! This was met with cheering and applause. The girls then led into their final song "Tachiagare!" and excused themselves from the stage. This is where things got interesting.

Next was the part of the concert simply called ANiUTa premium, but what it really was, was where all of the stops were pulled out. As an ad played showing the top 5 songs ranked on the app currently, the fans screamed, and we mean screamed, the loudest for “Ichido Dake no Koi Nara” from Walküre from the super popular Macross Delta series. People even started to chant the name before the word “Collaboration” flashed on the screen, and May’n was back! She sang “Miiro” from Kancolle to an ocean of cheers.

Next up, ALI PROJECT appeared ready to sing “Miwakugeki” by Valkyrie from Ensemble Stars! It certainly caught the fans off guard, but they loved it nonetheless. The next part was the loudest part of the concert all night. Wake Up, Girls! came back to perform “Youkoso Japari Park e” from Kemono Friends (The most popular anime right now in Japan) and the crowd literally. went. insane. they were so happy. Security actually doubled for this song!

Anyone who considers themselves an Otaku knows of Jojo’s Bizarre Adventure. Well, out no nowhere Hiroaki TOMMY Tominaga ran out and performed “Jojo ~Sono Chi no Sadame~” followed by one of the most well-liked anisong singers, Hiroshi Kitadani! To a round of cheering and applause almost as loud as the “Japari Park” performance, even Bee-kun was pumped up, he unleashed “We Go! And We Are! for the new world” which made Honey-chan melt with happiness and Bee-kun shed maybe a manly tear or two.

We did not think that the audience could be more excited, but once again we were proved wrong as Aqours took the stage. Singing the OP for Love Live! Sunshine!! “Aozora Jumping Heart”, the screams reached a deafening pitch as every single person in the audience’s hearts jumped in unison with this song! They kept the pace going right on into “Kimi no Kokoro wa Kagaryaiteirukai?” before emceeing and introducing themselves. Of course though, for this magical moment, we were transported to Numazu, Shizuoka prefecture where these nine sirens sing about their feelings and everyday lives on the world stage! Of course, after a one by one introduction where the members each introduced themselves in full character mode, we were treated to “Koi ni Naritai AQUARIUM” and “MIRAI TICKET”! Fans were crushed when the girls did not perform more, but suddenly changed moods when ALI PROJECT to take the show to a darker moment.

Rising from the smoke, Arika quickly quelled the fans and we became her legion as she opened with “Coppelia no Hitsugi” from classic anime Noir. She kept the gothic vibes up as witch dancers took to the stage for “Yuukyou Seishunka” from Code Geass. Bewitched, the fans cheered her on with their light sticks and showed her the respect she was deserved as an anisong industry veteran. She graced us with three more songs after revealing, to the surprise of everyone present, that she was celebrating her 25th anniversary as ALI PROJECT and an anisong singer! Of course the crowd went wild upon hearing this. However, she once again subdued even Bee-kun with just a glance.

At the end of the concert all of the stars came out and called on us anime fans to continue to support ANiUTa so that they could be back next year, and the next, and the next to bring us all more of what we love; anime songs. As the finale, we all cheered on a 3-2-1 countdown “ANiUPa!!” as streamers shot out from the stage and the lights flashed before everything went dark and we were dismissed into the world with one mission: to find more anisong lovers for ANiUTa!

honey's anime character
There were just too many good parts!!

honey's anime character
I cannot choose a favorite song! I loved them all!

Outro: Anisongs for All

By far the most memorable moment for us, was seeing the surprise artists come out as well as the cover songs! The covers blew us all away especially the “Youkoso Japari Park e” one! It was just such a nice treat and surprise. This was the point too when the audience cheered the loudest all night long.

If Bee-kun had to choose a moment, he definitely loved dancing along to “Aozora Jumping Heart” from Aqours! We may or may not have seen tears of joy because he was wearing sunglasses. We do know that he went hoarse from screaming out the lyrics as much as he could and louder than everyone around him so the girls could hear him.

Mo-chan was all about Wake Up, Girls! and she loved everything just about equally except for one song. Can you guess what it was? It was “Koi? de Ai? de Boukun Desu!" She was so happy we had to hold her back from jumping down to the stage floor and making her way to the stage. She was so captivated by the cute dances, outfits, colors, and more.

Bombon found herself nodding along more than she wanted to admit to ALI PROJECT. In fact, maybe she was one of the witches on stage as she was mysteriously in the bathroom for one of the songs when there was a rather curvy witch dancing. Hmm... Who knows for sure?

Honey-chan really enjoyed everything, but as she loves to sing just like May’n and considers herself someone good for the Macross project. She really loved “Diamond Crevasse”. She may or may not have had to fight off Bee-kun to sing louder for the song as he cried out Sheryl’s name.

honey's anime character
I cannot wait for next year!!! It ended too soon

honey's anime character
I just hope Walküre makes it next year! I gotta debut soon

SETLIST
May’n:

1. Kimi Shinitamou Koto Nakare


2. ViViD


3. Northern Cross


4. Belief


5. Diamond Crevasse


Wake Up, Girls!:

1. 7 Girls War


2. Shoujo Koukyoukyoku


3. Beyond the Bottom


4. Koi? de Ai? de Boukun Desu!


5. Tachiagare!


ANiUTa premium:

1. Miiro covered by May’n


2. Miwakugeki covered by ALI PROJECT


3. Youkoso Japari Park e covered by Wake Up, Girls!


4. Jojo~Sono Chi no Sadame~ by Toyonaga TOMMY Hiroaki


5. We Go! by Kitadani Hiroshi


6. We Are! for the new world by Kitadani Hiroshi


Aqours:

1. Aozora Jumping Heart


2. Kimi no Kokoro wa Kagayaiteirukai?


3. Koi ni Naritai AQUARIUM


4. MIRAI TICKET


ALI PROJECT:

1. Coppelia no Hitsugi


2. Yuukyou Seishunka


3. Seishoujo Ryouiki


4. Ankoku Tengoku


5. Rara Eve Shinseiki


Next Live Concert Appearance Information
Anisong World Matsuri Los Angeles 2017
  • MAIN ARTISTS: Aqours / ALI PROJECT / Wake Up, Girls! / and more...
  • DATE: June 30th and July 1st, 2017 Doors Open: VIP Seating 5 PM / GA Seating 5:30 PM
  • PLACE: Microsoft Theatre
  • COST: Loge $45, Orchestra $65
Nagareboshi

Editor/Translator

Author: Nagareboshi

American by birth; international by choice. I am trying to bring attention to one of my favorite causes; me. I translate by day and write by night. Aspiring polyglot. My dream would be to be the personal translator for Amuro Namie. Other than that, my hobbies include languages, weightlifting, sleeping, karaoke, GOOD coffee and music. When I’m not doing any of the above, I am most likely laughing hysterically at Willam Belli videos or EV farming. I ain’t gunna Rupologize for it neither. Waifu are Shirai Kuroko & Euaerin.

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