After more than two years, world-renowned Japanese rock band ONE OK ROCK brought their music back to Singapore with the ONE OK ROCK 2016 “35xxxv” ASIA TOUR on Saturday, January 23, 2016 at Fort Canning Park. Singapore is the last stop that wraps up their Asia tour.
ONE OK ROCK last performed in Singapore to a sold out show in 2013 as part of the “Who are you??Who are we??” TOUR at Resort World Sentosa – Hard Rock Coliseum. They first visited Southeast Asia in 2012 when they were in Singapore for the “Start Walking The World Tour”, performing at *SCAPE.
This year, the five thousand attendees at ONE OK ROCK’s show in Singapore last Saturday probably was not the Japanese band’s usual well-informed demographic, and this may have disappointed the band and some fans in the crowd, who were looking forward to a more energetic concert.
Made up of mainly young people decked in ONE OK ROCK t-shirts and Japanese-related brands, there was no doubt that most attendees were die hard fans. Coupled with the fact that the fans were screaming band members’ names in between songs, and singing by heart to all the lyrics (even in Japanese!), it looked like it was going to be a promising, high-energy gig.
ONE OK ROCK burst onto the stage and opened with their hit “Take Me To The Top” off their latest album “35xxxv”, driving the crowd absolutely wild. This includes the insane number of smartphones that were lifted to the sky.
The Japanese band, formed in 2005 in the heart of Tokyo, wasted no time in delivering what the the band has always been famous for. Synchronised headbanging from guitarists Toru and Ryota, aggressive yet soulful vocals from lead singer Taka, and heart-racing beats from drummer Tomoya were incredibly overwhelming.
However, it was appalling how unresponsive the crowd was when Taka tried almost desperately to get the crowd off their feet and into the mood of moshing.
Appparently, Taka shouting “Fu*king push it back!” and “Let me see you circle pit!” several times were not big enough of a hint that the band wanted to see some proof that the crowd was actually enjoying their concert, apart from having fans stare at the stage behind the veil of their smartphones throughout the night.
A few concert goers took their displeasure with the crowd to the official event Facebook page.
Though the moshing culture widely popular in most post-hardcore and pop punk concerts was absent in this year’s ONE OK ROCK gig, the band remained excited to play on stage, delivering a heartwarming acoustic set with “Wherever You Are” and “Heartache”, before closing with four powerful encore songs.
With numerous hit songs under their belt, ONE OK ROCK is one of the most popular rock bands of their time, playing to sold-out crowds not just in Japan but also in the USA and Europe. They have also appeared in numerous music festivals such as Australia’s Soundwave Festival (2015) and VANS WARPED TOUR in America (2014), and collaborated with musicians such as Simple Plan and Sleeping with Sirens. Recently, the band signed a record deal with music giant Warner Bros. Records.
The band members took some time to linger on stage and thank the crowd with a traditional Japanese bow before leaving the stage.
Armed with their new album and an upcoming tour throughout the United States with Issues and Crown The Empire, we consider ourselves lucky to have seen ONE OK ROCK bring their addictive Japanese post-hardcore to Singapore for the third time, and will definitely be looking forward to watch this explosive band again somewhere around the world.