There’s a moment in SCANDAL’s concert at the O2 Academy in Islington when the band can’t help but laugh to each other. They’re about to jump headfirst into the electrifying Konya wa Pizza Party, one of their funniest tracks of the night, and the crowd have thrown up inflatable pizza slices and letters spelling the word ‘party’ into the air. It’s an entertaining moment in the gig’s one-and-a-half-hour set, and is one that perfectly epitomises the show.
This is the second time that the band have played in the UK, having headlined the same venue only one year before. Their Yellow tour across Europe is not only a celebration of SCANDAL’s latest album, but also their tenth anniversary in the music business. Having first formed in Osaka in 2006, Haruna, Mami, Tomomi and Rina have toured all over the world, and it’s clear from their prowess on stage that they know how to put on a good show.
The band start things off with the instrumental Room No. 7, getting the audience excited for the show that’s about to kick off. Their energy on stage is contagious, and soon fans are chanting ‘hey’ repeatedly as the girls give it their all on stage. There’s no time to settle down, as they go straight into the first single of their new album Stamp! and with the energy in the room increasing more and more, it’s hard not to have a smile on your face.
There’s singing and jumping throughout the night; even SCANDAL’s staff are dancing away to the band’s music at the side of the stage. Performing songs that are old and new, the fans can barely contain themselves as the show goes on. While SCANDAL are definitely on their A-game, it is the crowd that makes the show as fun as it is. Whether it’s chanting alongside the band, twirling towels above their heads, or throwing a makeshift pizza party, there’s not a moment where they falter and this seems to fuel the girls as they perform onstage.
When the group talk to the crowd in between their tracks you can see that they’re having as good a time as the fans. Haruna speaks in Japanese and English, translating her words so that everyone in the room can understand what she wants to say. She talks briefly with Tomomi, and the pair ask the crowd if they are having a good time. The answer is an unanimous yes.
When the band perform songs such as Love Me Do, Taiyou Scandalous, and Doll, the crowd (and SCANDAL’s staff) are all in an excitable state, dancing away as Haruna, Mami and Tomomi play away on stage. The energy in the room reaches an all-new high when the band perform EVERYBODY SAY YEAH! from their 2010 album TEMPTATION BOX, as fans chant along with the band so that the venue is buzzing with excitement.
The band end the show with some of their most prominent songs, Shoujo S and SCANDAL BABY, which were both released as part of their debut album Best Scandal. Mami and Tomomi come centre stage as the final song kicks in, looking to each other and Haruna, who sings in the middle. They mouth the lyrics to each other, making funny faces and looking to the crowd in front of them. It’s great to see them having so much fun.
As the show comes to a close the band thank the crowd and take their final bow exclaiming that they can’t wait to come back to London. I’m sure it won’t be long until we get to see them on stage once more.
Article and photos by Roxy Simons.
Thank you to B7Klan.