“We don’t know what the future holds, but let’s all continue to create great stories.”
- Event: fhána 5th Anniversary SSPECIAL LIVE - STORIES
- Date: Sunday January 27, 2019
- Location: Nakano Sunplaza
Intro: Everybody Has a Story to Tell
One merit from live concerts is that you get the opportunity to experience the euphoria and hype that comes with a live audience. The roaring of the crowd, all cheering in almost perfect synchronicity to their favorite melody, supporting the artist they love. The jovial feeling that overtakes your soul when the lights flash before your eyes, and every beat and rhythm reverberates through your bones. It’s an experience unlike any other, and we had that chance to experience it with the awesome performance of J-pop group sensation, fhána. The theme of the show placed a lot of emphasis on “stories”, ones that we create everyday and share with those around us. Each of the songs performed at the show all provided a beautiful story of their own, with emotional highs, soaring melodies, and a harmonious delivery on all fronts.
The live event took place at the Nakano Sunplaza, an incredibly popular venue where a lot of popular artists go there to perform. The ambience was soothing yet instilled this great sense of joy and excitement that had everybody excited for fhána’s performance. The fans in attendance weren’t just youthful go-getters but also the more mature audience made their appearance, which goes to show just how music transcends age and impacts on the mind, body, and soul. The band wanted their fans to hear their story and so we’re going to provide you with a breakdown of how it all went down, so let’s dive in!
Performance: Every Story Has a Beginning
To kick things off, Junichi Sato, main composer and leader of the group, introduced himself and reminded everyone that the event would be a long, truly special one. He went on to explain that in life, everybody has a story to tell and throughout our lives more stories continue to be created. After the brief but touching introduction, the band went into their “First Act”, which contained memorable tracks like “Hello!My World!!” and their most popular song “Aozora no Rhapsody”, which was used as the opening theme for 2017’s anime series Kobayashi-san Chi no Maid Dragon. In total, there were 26 songs that fhána performed and all of them were magical in their own unique way. When we say the energy in the room was palpable we aren’t joking, because the moment the opening song “calling” came on, everybody stood up and started screaming, whipping their arms back and forth in the air.
It wasn’t until the third song in the lineup (“Tiny Lamp”) came on that the energy skyrocketed to another level, with fans whipping out their glow sticks and performing powerful gestures to convey their passion. The cornucopia of lights flooded the venue and really highlighted the power of each song, but also emphasized how fun and engaging the event truly was. Bright blues, rocket reds, passionate purples, all of these colors gave off an emotion that really helped to bring each song to life in a remarkable way. Even those who sat in attendance couldn’t help but bob their heads in excitement because there was no way you could sit there without a part of your body not wanting to jive with the rhythm. Track 11 on the list, “Aozora no Rhapsody” was perhaps the most explosive since it’s arguably one of the group’s most iconic singles, and everybody erupted singing along to the cheerful, childlike melody. It really created the story of adventure, youth, and living life to the fullest because life is one big journey after all!
“Divine Intervention” was the next track after “Aozora no Rhapsody”, which delivered an impactful sound, with emotional highs that reminded you of your high school days and enjoying the more easygoing flow of life. So many fans simply couldn’t contain their excitement, as we witnessed a few swinging their glow sticks too ferociously and had to be stopped by other fans, but it was a testament to just how sensational the track was.
Second Act: Every Story is Full of Highs and Lows
After a brief VTR intermission, the second act kicked off with a much more relaxing yet powerful tone, with “The Color to the Gray World” and “What a Wonderful World Line”, which brought the energy from the first act. The second act was a benevolent clash of melodies that spoke to your heart and soul, and added a breath of fresh air to the venue. One thing that fhána does so well is knowing how to woo their fans and deliver on all fronts, demonstrating that they’re not just about creating stories but creating memorable ones. Main vocalist towana showcased her robust vocal talents on the very psychedelic song “Do you realize?”, which had us singing along in perfect harmony and at times tearing up from all of the excitement. towana really proved to everyone that her vocal prowess is unmatched and can really deliver from any vocal range, whether it be low or high octave, whenever she feels like it. That display of vocal versatility is perhaps what makes fhána such a distinct group from most other J-pop artists, since they provide an assortment of melodies that fuse together different genres to create something magnificent.
“Relief” was the track shorty after “Do you realize?”, and it had everybody singing together happily. This was getting towards the end of the event where we imagine that everyone is running low on gas, but surprisingly a lot of the fans had a lot of gas in the tank and wanted more. An encore was certainly granted and fhána came back to the stage after performing several other tracks, kicking off with their latest single, “World Atlas”, a song that’s imaginative, vivacious, and heavenly. towana once again gave us a great performance, with sampler and metallophone specialist Kevin Mitsunaga coming to the front of the stage to encourage fans to clap and raise their vibrations once again. It was certainly an experience unlike any other and fhána gave it their all, and then some.
Outro: We Don’t Know What the Future Holds, But Let’s All Continue to Create Great Stories.
The concert wrapped up with a few more songs under the “Last Act”, which was filled with songs that reflected a story of letting go and learning to move forward. There’s never really an end to a story, it’s just a brand new chapter for us to embark on, and every song toward the end really emphasized that. It saddened us that things were coming to an end, but “kotonoha breakdown” filled our hearts with hope that the next story would be waiting for us up ahead. fhána really wanted to ensure their fans that every song they produced was one that came with something special, and they helped to recreate a memory that made us feel good, feel lively, or those emotional lows we often experience too. It was a balance of all emotions packaged incredibly well in one concert, and we couldn’t be more happier to have experienced it all live.
Junichi Sato returned back to the stage along with everyone else and stated that: “We don’t know what the future holds, but let’s all continue to create great stories.” This message alone really helped to sum things up for us, and we definitely hope to create more great stories for everyone. We love you fhána, all the best!