Otakon 2014

It was a pleasure of mine to once again attend Otakon this year.

A per my tradition from last year, I spent the entire con lining up.

I’ve heard rumours about there being panel and other stuff to do there, but I have yet to confirm the veracity of such information.

This isn’t a bad thing btw, unlike some other convention in the west, I actually have fun in the Otakon lines. I get to meet new people, talk with twitter people, and there’s no climate of austerity put in place by staff. Also contrary to popular belief (or at least by people haven’t attended a certain con in the west) the lines at otakon are generally EASY MODO.

This year, rather than doing my usual routine of doing a 14h (one way) trip to Baltimore, I did a road trip with @fireaxe , @OrobleRL & @votamega .

Being the only one with a license, Fireaxe was boss enough to drive the all way down there and back.

Here is my event recap.

DAY 01

We skipped DAY 0, and left Montreal on Thursday around 11:30PM, picked up Vota en route and headed straight to Baltimore to arrive around 9am.

First order of business was to get the badge (task which only took an hour an half)

Opening Ceremonies:

DSC_0222

This opened with a performance by a group I forgot the name off.

It felt a lot like being back in 2006 and watching Matrimelee videos.

uh, yeah.

Anyway, Jim called in the guests who were around to come on stage and say Hello,

DSC_0241

ALTIMA dropped by quickly because they were still rehearsing, that was pretty awesome.

DSC_0261

Hiroaki Yura of Eminence Symphony Orchestra dropped by also accompanied by Jiro Ishii and Yusuke Kozaki.

They briefly mentioned their KickStarter Project 「Under The Dog

DSC_0287

Mai Mai Miracle director was also there.

ALTIMA LIVE@OTAKON14

I’m not entirely sure why,  we went to line up for ALTIMA perhaps 3 to 4hours before seating time.

I got to meet fellow JAM Project aficionado Joao of JAM Freaks, that was pretty great.

While waiting still, I saw @seikenkage, @Dracil , @allocer90 and Shini practice their Wotagei, and I tried to learn that mystical art, but it’s clearly not for me….also I need to practice more maybe?

We finally got seated more or less on schedules time, we acquired pretty good seats.

DSC_0310

Dracil had bought a couple of UO for TRYANGLE, but a quick glance at the set list revealed they wouldn’t perform it , and that was pretty heartbreaking so they kind of got used at random, but you could easily spot our group with an army of KBs.

Now onto the live,

Here is the setlist of what they’ve performed:

  1. I’ll Believe
  2. Fight 4 Real 
  1. Mission Dispatch
  2. ONE
  3. Backfire
  1. Walk This Way
  2. I Love Rock n Roll
  3. Here We Are 〜Mountain Explosion〜
  4. Indefinitely
  5. WISH i WISH
  6. CYBER CYBER

== ENCORE ==

  1. Burst The Gravity

ALTIMA was what HYPED me to go to OTAKON this year.

I’ve always enjoyed the other works of ALTIMA’s members (MOTSU & M.O.V.E , SAT & FripSide and Kurosaki Maon’s solo career) and ONE definitely ranks very high in my favorite songs of the past couple of years so seeing them LIVE was a MUST for me.

Interestingly, I had given their TRYANGLE album a listen before, but for whatever reason I couldn’t get much into it but after seeing them perform (part) of this album live, I definitely love it A LOT now.

MOTSU pretty much stole the show by himself. He’s a magnificent MC and he has so much energy it’s crazy, unfortunately because of the chairs it was a bit hard to jump with along them.

MAON too, I loved the Para Para moves she was making.

I think the best surprise was when they covered Walk This Way and I love Rock n Roll, that was over the top.

I only have great memories about this LIVE, expect maybe one thing.

if there’s one gripe about this live, it’s the freaking people who got front seats (I consider front row and up till at least 5th row to be front seats) and wouldn’t stand up during the live. MOTSU even repeatedly asked them to stand up, but none, they would have none of that.  I personally find this very disrespectful, this is why when I attend LIVES in North America I try to be the most in front as possible so that I don’t see the seating people in front of me.

It’s not classical opera or whatnot, so c’mon, STAND UP.

As linkington best said :

urgh.

ALTIMA Autograph #1

As a couple of us expected, they announced an Autograph session right after the live.

We rushed to get in line (which somewhat because of cluster) and succeeded in acquiring the Magical autograph.

I told MOTSU that I just arrived from 10h road trip from Canada, told SAT that I love FripSide and that my friends like to compare me to Bob Sapp for whatever reason. By the time I reached MAON, I was at a loss of word, most likely star struck.

We then went for food down the arbour only to meet up later at the lounge @narumiayatsuji got for the duration of the con.

Which a pretty badass view on the baseball stadium.

The view from my room. I get complementary baseball games

A post shared by Chris A (@kurotsukih) on

That’s when we started finishing the planning for Hayamin’s gift.

At that point I’m told that due to my body being awake for more than 42hs, I was starting to make as much sense as I do when I’m drunk.

fun fun fun.

DAY 2

Hayamin Autograph.

In theory the first thing in the agenda should have been Hayamin Panel, unfortunately, due to highly charged schedule Hayamin could only be at Otakon for a day, and in order to let her rest, the time frame in between her panel and autograph session wasn’t long enough that you could attend both… unless you paid your way into the autograph line.

We went to line up around noon , ( so 2h30 before the intended autograph start ) and found one we were not even close to being first in line. Still had a pretty awesome spot though.

The line started filling up pretty quickly behind us.

Got to see old faces , and meet new faces @AfroGene

btw, @kohime totally killed it by showing up as Kaede for Hayamin, that’s really awesome.

The highlight of the line was talking to so many Producers.

The World is all one.

@GarbejP drew this Kaede and a bunch of Ps signed it, and we also gave it to Hayamin.

YOSHIKI Photo OP

After Hayamin autograph I went to catch the last 2mins of the ALTIMA panel, which sadly was in part empty due to Hayamin .

I went to go get my Yoshiki badge only to find out I made it into the Photo OP lottery.

So a bunch of us went to do group shots with Yoshiki, Heath and Pata.

DSC_0324

Surreal experience. It also went by so fast I barely had the time to blink w.

ALTIMA Autograph #2

Second ALTIMA autograph I got at OTAKON

A post shared by Chris A (@kurotsukih) on

Right next to it was the ALTIMA autograph line so I went to grab a second autograph.

The line was pretty small this time around (I assume because most got theirs on DAY 1)

and half an hour later they were mostly done.

A bunch of us who stayed not far from there decided to go do the TRYANGLE pose for them.

And they actually joined us. Best con memory.

and that was it for the day…

We went back to HQ , did calls,

until 26 of us reached Fogo at night to partake in massive meat ingestion.

WELP version 2.0 wwwww

A post shared by Chris A (@kurotsukih) on

good times.

Food being ingested, we went back to HQ and started doing what Ps do best :

Calls to idols related things (I’VE, WUG & iM@S in this case) accompanied by MountainClear, an invention of Mr. @Kevo

DAY 3

YOSHIKI Classical @Otakon14

The only thing on schedule that day was Yoshiki’s LIVE.

The day didn’t start super well for me because hangover and general sleep deprivation

but I managed to hold on for YOSHIKI’s live.

DSC_0341

I didn’t write down the setlist this time, so I’ll bullet points what I remember.

He opened with Forever Love , and I think right about then, I died from FEELS.

He asked took audience request at some point and we got a Small cover of TEARS by Katie, who also performed the Saint Seiya 2014’s movie theme song HERO

 DSC_0356

FEELS reached Maximum output when he played Kurenai.

He played also Silent Jealousy iirc.

DSC_0364

Before the end,  Heath and Pata drop by to jam for about minute or two as crazy awesome as they could be.

And finally Yoshiki went for ultimate feel by closing with Endless Rain

DSC_0368

As you probably figured, this live was entirely made of FEELS for me. I’m glad he did most X-JAPAN song I knew. During the MC, he would often throw tearjerkers at us when he talked about Hide and Taiji.

I really wish I could see them this October when they are in NYC, but alas, other constraint might prevent that from happening.

====

After that, I went to rest of a bit in the con center, still under hangover effects while waiting for vota and rob.

and we proceeded to leave Baltimore around 4:30PM and landed in Montreal around 2am.

Badass road trip.

++ Would do again

Overall, Otakon is definitely my favourite convention of the year so far (still one left ) and yet all I did was stay in line.

I probably has to do with the fact that the convention center isn’t bloated, overcrowded and staff is actually competent. that makes Otakon a stress free convention and that’s what it really comes down to.

Otakon has won my heart for a second year in a row, and I’m sure it’s not the last time.

DSC_0370

Next Post

Previous Post

© 2017 Atelier Kurotsuki

Theme by Anders Norén