L’Arc~en~Ciel 15th L’Anniversary Live

This is a two-DVD set taken from the shows that L’Arc~en~Ciel performed last November (25-26, 2006) at Tokyo Dome (sold out) to celebrate their 15 years together. Only two of the members were there fifteen years ago (Tetsu (b) wanted to form a band, found hyde (v) and hiro (g) and pero (d) in 1991; hiro and pero left in 1992 at different times and were replaced by ken (g) and sakura (d); sakura left in 1997 and was replaced by yukihiro (support in 1997, official Jan 1 1998). The tracklist spans their entire career, mostly singles, but with a few other songs thrown in.

This is more fangirl squee and overanalysis than an actual review; I loved this DVD. I adore L’Arc~en~Ciel but am aware of their faults when live (especially hyde’s voice); everyone sounded good and looked good (with occasional wtf-ness, mostly tetsu (especially his hair) but occasionally others; yukihiro had an inexplicable shirt in the extras) and looked like they wanted to be there and were enjoying themselves; hyde’s voice was approximately where it should be and was not as hoarse as it is sometimes. Everyone who’s at all interested in L’Arc~en~Ciel should watch this (except for those that think it’s wrong for yukihiro to play sakura’s songs); it is an excellent concert and a good overview of their career.

There was voting for favorite songs beforehand, the list is here: www.larc-en-ciel.com/archive/15th-req/15th-req.html — I don’t know how much of an effect that had on the final playlists, though. It is mostly older songs (1996 and earlier); I voted for “Ibara no Namida”, which was fourth and which was performed; I would have loved to have seen them perform “I’m So Happy”, though sakura seems to have appropriated it recently (he actually sang it at a Lion Heads show in Shanghai and was using it in their soundchecks otherwise). The song I was most surprised by the lack of was “Blurry Eyes”.

There were four sets (one per era) with costume changes between (for hyde and ken, at least; they chose to wear tour costumes (or something similar) from the relevant periods). I’m not sure which set came from which night; I assume the performances in the extras were from songs which were only performed one night but weren’t in the chosen set. I’m glad they left in the MCs and other random things, even though I can’t understand them, especially the birthday wishes for yukihiro and ken (yukihiro’s was the day before, and was celebrated the first night; ken’s was a couple of days after, and was celebrated the second night.) I don’t think yukihiro was really expecting that (though ken had to be); he was a little teary. I can’t imagine what it would be like to have 50,000 people singing Happy Birthday. There were also random things during Link: ken attempting tongue twisters, hyde breakdancing; I wonder if the other night had tetsu and yukihiro doing random things.

The show started with “The Fourth Avenue Cafe” on a small round stage; they then moved to the main stage for a set of early songs (1994-96); yukihiro was deeply concentrating in this part (these were sakura’s songs). They followed this with a set from 1998-2000, with a medley mostly from this era. The performance of “Trick” featured everyone on guitar and singing a verse. They then returned to the round stage for two songs from Dune (hyde did find a long white tunic!); “I’m in Pain” in the extras looked like it was part of this set (hyde was wearing the same thing, at least). They all were concentrating very hard during these songs. They returned to the main stage with a set from the more recent albums (only the singles); this was the only part where hyde’s voice was a little hoarse. They finished with “Niji”.

I have the Hong Kong version (legitimate, bought from yesasia.com, released by Sony of Hong Kong); it was substantially cheaper than the Japanese version, and since I doubted I could get the first press, I didn’t mind getting the basic version (white DVD case, the DVDs, an insert with credits only). It is Region 3; I’m very happy my extremely cheap DVD player was easily made region-free.

Because I was curious about the distribution of the songs and was going to write it out anyway, below is the tracklist and original albums. L’Arc~en~Ciel Parade 2006 was a medley of nine songs in twelve minutes, so I’m counting them separately. Here is a summary; the tracklist and dates follow:

original lineup: 1
sakura era (1993-1996, 4 albums): 9 full (2 indie, 7 major) + 1 Parade
yukihiro, pre-hiatus (1997-2000, 4 albums): 13 full + 8 Parade
yukihiro, post-hiatus (2004+, 2 albums): 7 + a snippet of bye bye


I’m mostly using album appearances because I’m too lazy to check single release dates vs. album release dates; I did note the ones I knew were different years (Niji and Link).

Disc 1:
  1. the Fourth Avenue Cafe — True (1996)
  2. Caress of Venus — True (1996)
  3. Vivid Colors — Heavenly (1995)
  4. Lies and Truth — True (1996)
  5. 夏の憂鬱 (time to say good-bye) [natsu no yuutsu] — Heavenly (1995)
  6. All Dead — Tierra (1994)
  7. White Feathers — Tierra (1994)
  8. NEO UNIVERSE — Real (2000)
  9. HONEY — Ray (1999)
  10. STAY AWAY — Real (2000)
  11. metropolis — winter fall single (1998)
  12. winter fall — Heart (1998)
  13. あなた [anata] — Heart (1998)
  14. trick — Ray (1999)
Disc 2:
  1. L’Arc~en~Ciel Parade 2006:
    • HEAVEN’S DRIVE — Ark (1999)
    • DIVE TO BLUE — Ark (1999)
    • LOVE FLIES — Real (2000)
    • 花葬 [kasou]– Ray (1999)
    • finale — Real (2000)
    • 浸食~lose control~ [shinshoku] — Ray (1999)
    • Anemone — Clicked Singles Best 13 (2001)
    • flower — True (1996)
    • snow drop — Ray (1999)
    • HEAVEN’S DRIVE — Ark (1999)
  2. Driver’s High — Ark (1999)
  3. いばらの涙 [ibara no namida] — Ray (1999)
  4. Dune — Dune (1993)
  5. Voice — Dune (1993)
  6. New World — Awake (2005)
  7. 自由への招待 [jiyuu e no shoutai] — Awake (2005)
  8. 叙情詩 [jyojyoushi] — Awake (2005)
  9. Killing Me — Awake (2005)
  10. READY STEADY GO Smile (2004)
  11. Link — single (2005), Kiss (2007)
  12. 虹 [niji] — single (1997), Heart (1998)
Extra:
  1. Pieces — Ark (1999)
  2. Shout at the Devil — Heart (1998)
  3. I’m in pain — unreleased/indies era (1992?)
  4. 瞳の住人 [hitomi no jyuunin] — Smile (2004)
  5. Bye Bye — not a full song, unreleased/new?

———

1992: 1
I’m In Pain (there’s a video from 1992 of the original lineup (hyde, tetsu, hiro, pero) performing this and Claustrophobia (aka Shutting from the Sky) floating around)
1993: 2
Dune: Dune, Voice
1994: 2
Tierra: All Dead, White Feathers
1995: 2
Heavenly: Vivid Colors, Natsu no Yuutsu~time to say goodbye~ (though I think this is technically the single version; the album version didn’t have the subtitle. It was still 1995, though)
1996: 3 full, 1 Parade
True (full): Caress of Venus, the Fourth Avenue Cafe, Lies and Truth
True (parade): Flower
1997: 1
Niji (single, was on 1998’s Heart)
1998: 4
Heart: Winter Fall, anata, Shout at the Devil
winter fall single: metropolis
1999: 5 full, 6 Parade
Ark (full): Driver’s High, Pieces
Ark (parade): Heaven’s Drive, Dive to Blue
Ray (full): Honey, Trick, Ibara no Namida
Ray (parade): Snow Drop, Kasou, Shinshoku~lose control~
2000: 2 full, 2 Parade
Real (full): Neo Universe, Stay Away
Real (parade): Love Flies, Finale
2001: 1 Parade
Clicked Singles Best 13: Anemone
2004: 2
Smile: Ready Steady Go, Hitomi no Jyuunin
2005: 5
Awake: New World, Killing Me, Jiyuu e no Shoutai, Jyojyoushi
Link (single, is on 2007’s Kiss)
2006 (?): 1
bye bye; presumed new, not on Kiss, not the full version
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4 Responses to L’Arc~en~Ciel 15th L’Anniversary Live

  1. futsu says:

    cool. worth for 7800 yen ne..
    i think this a “must have” item..

  2. Silvia says:

    Really interesting information! Thanx a lot … I wished they played I’m so happy or Taste of Love, too.

  3. Kamuy says:

    Really good information, but i’d love much more if it were a fanmade tracklist from the concert’s day itself*

    I’m in pain also is in a DEMO version (I guess it’s before to be completely produced for the final (live) version -by Hajime Okano as ussual????-)

    Finally, I think bye bye will be the last single (probably B side) for L’arc’s Bye bye at 2011… at concert there was a complete version of this song not included in DVD but recorded by a l’arc fan from Tokyo Dome

    *Necessarily it had to be extra songs out from DVD, but I haven’t know about.

  4. theblackrose94 says:

    No, L’Arc~en~Ciel will never say goodbye to us.
    As tetsu said : “This band will last as long as I live, I can’t say when it will end anymore than I can tell when I’m going to die” -tetsugaku Chapter 68 : L’Arc~en~Ciel

    *thanks to Nanani aka Natalie Arnold for the English translation of tetsugaku.

    And I believe with tetsu. I’ll keep my love for L’Arc and I don’t ever want them to say goodbye to us. I don’t know what will happen to me if they really say “Sayounara”…
    I don’t wanna lose the rainbow of my life.

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