Sengoku Jidai －The age of civil wars－ [ 戦国時代－The age of civil wars－] is a visual kei band I’ve quite actively been trying to avoid – because I know that I would like them, quite a lot. However, I was following one of the members, bassist Ju-ken, on social media – he used to play with VAMPS, and with GACKT before that, and I have one of his picks from the Barcelona VAMPS concert . Not long before my trip, Sengoku Jidai released a new song, which I learnt through Ju-ken’s Instagram. So I went down the YouTube rabbit hole, and somehow ended up on the webpage. Over there, I found out that there was a free event in Kawagoe today as part of the new single promotion. And that is why I decided to come over and try to attend.
Around 10 am I showed up at Kawagoe Pepe shopping centre. The event was a “sain-kai”, which is basically a “meet and get an autograph”. From 11 am, you had access to a booth to buy a number of CDs of the last two singles: Yotogi no Hana [夜伽の華], the last one, and Sengoku Enka [戦国演歌], my favourite. The band would hold a small concert, after which you could shake their hands and get your CDs signed, one at a time – furthermore, by participating you would be guaranteed a seat inside a small restricted area to watch said concert. I ended up being the 18th person on the line, as my entry ticket said so. It took about an hour to complete the buying part.
In between the two parts of the events, I made a little escapade to Kawagoe [川越大師]’s Seiya-san Muryōshuji Kita-in [星野山無量寿寺喜多院], which is a Buddhist temple dating back from the 830 AD. It is noted for its hall and its pagoda. It also has a small graveyard with “the five hundred disciples of Buddha”. I was not sure whether last time I had actually been there or not, because I arrived by the Delijah TM method of getting lost, so I wanted to make sure, and I had a bit over an hour to kill.
After walking the temple for a while I went back to Pepe for the second part of the Sengoku Jidai event. “Doors” to the seated area opened at 13:30, and the live started off early, around 13:45. There were many people watching from the sidelines, too, that was good to attract new fans. The acoustic was very interesting – I had never been to one, except for a couple of songs at the VAMPS’s Beast Party, but this one was also an unplugged. The live lasted about an hour, with four songs and a lot of talk, except on Ju-ken’s part, who plays a persona called “Date” and never speaks – he is very strict and serious – so he just explained, via gestures, that he liked fishing in summer. The whole persona thing will be important later.
The fun part came during the actual signing – the first one to see me was the drummer whose eyes went wide – he has no poker face at all and completely went (O_O)!, wondering what a white person was doing in their event. I informed him that I was the foreign factor representation. Then I got Ju-ken / Date – I told him about having his pick from Barcelona. His eyes went even wider and the only thing that he said was “sank you, sank you, sank you” shaking my hand. I actually… chatted a bit with all four of them. I had bought two CDs so I could go through the process twice, and they remembered me for the second time. Honestly, if there had been more CDs, I would have bought all to get them signed.
After the event was finished, I went back to Tokyo [東京]. I kinda got lost so I wasted about an extra hour and a half, and thus I was not at the next hotel, in Shinagawa, until late. It had a huge TV (that’s a 135cm-wide bed)!
I got dinner on the way. One of the items I tried were the conbini boiled eggs.
Walked distance: 19468 steps / 13.9 km. However this includes the little furutsuke that Nao-A made us do, and that was recorded as pacing, and getting lost and walking for an hour coming out of the wrong exit of a station.