Japanese rock/pop band Glay played the House of Blues on Friday September 11th and Saturday, September 12th. Glay, a band named after being in the “gray” area of rock and pop, played its standard combination of headbanging rock and soulful ballads, and I was there to experience both live shows.
On Friday night, the doors opened at 8:00, although the show didn’t itself begin around 9:30, allowing fans plenty of time to mingle, though most of us headed for the pit to try to get as close to the stage as possible. I walked around the balcony for a bit, meeting with some acquaintances and attempting to see if any special guests had arrived. Since none apparently had, I then headed for the pit, originally being on the left side of the stage next to lead guitarist Hisashi’s position, which was where I spent most of Friday night’s show before moving to Takuro’s side later on.
Saturday night, I was carrying my laptop bag, so I staked out a seat in the balcony, which I wish I hadn’t, since it was a slightly better show, not to say that Friday night’s was bad. It was more that Friday night’s was “good,” and Saturday night’s was “awesome.”
Glay began the show Friday night with their song “Great Vacation,” with vocalist Teru engaging the audience almost immediately. Eventually, the setlist included a variety of classic songs by the band such as “Be With You” and newer songs such as “Verb” and “High Communication.”
While the entire band provided a solid performance, vocalist Teru was the true standout of the show on both nights, with an intense, high-energy performance that had the audience almost immediately enthralled. On both nights, his vocal solos leading into the audience participation section of Starless Night and into Be With You were amazing examples of range and strength. Not to be ignored was bassist Jiro, who rocked the House of Blues with flawless bass solos both nights, nor second guitarist Takuro, whose skills on both electric guitar in most of the live and plugged acoustic guitar on the final song “I’m In Love” were on full display.
Saturday night, however, had to be the best of both shows. While the setlist between both nights was very similar, Saturday’s show was both the last live of the tour and the most energetic performance from the band. All of the band members seemed to be on the top of their game, providing a flawless performance in almost every song. While most of the songs were the same, it seemed somehow more “special” as the last live of the tour, and Teru promised that the band would be back next year in LA for another show.
You can check out the band and some of the recorded versions of songs they performed at myspace.com/glayofficial.
House of Blues Sunset Strip 9/11 Set List:
1. GREAT VACATION
3. Ikiteku Tsuyosa
5. Sen No Knife ga mune wo sasu
7. STARLESS NIGHT
10.BE WITH YOU
13. I am xxx
15. More than Love
16. Kanojo no “Modern…”
17. Theme of SHUTTER SPEEDS
18. ACID HEAD
1. Peak hatesinaku Soul kagirinaku
2. I’m in love