COMIN’ KOBE 2014 Thoughts

In two words: Fucking Amazing.

Just a quick post while it’s all fresh in my mind, I’ll write more about it when I have more time.

COMIN’ KOBE was my first festival of this size, and boy was it fantastic. I had so much fun even though I only went there from about 1pm onwards!

We stayed in one venue, Kobe International Hall,  most of the time because switching between venues was a bit of a hassle. Especially trying to get into the World Memorial Hall took much too long and wasn’t quite worth it.

There were two stages in the hall, the ESP 10th Stage and the BASS ON TOP Stage, the former having more punk/metal bands and crazier crowds while the latter was less crowded (more pop/rock bands). Bands would play on each stage in an alternate manner, so after A band finished at the first stage, B band would start soon after on the second stage. I think this system is pretty common for music festivals.

M and I arrived just in time to catch the last two songs of MY FIRST STORY‘s set which set the tone for the rest of the day. We caught THE STARBEMS, SHANK and lastly, Crossfaith also at the same stage (ESP 10th) and boy were we in for some crazy moshing there.

It’s not my first time experiencing moshing but this was a whole new level. The friends from Germany I was with remarked that they were  surprised to see this level of moshing here in Japan. I wish I hadn’t rushed out of the house without putting on contacts in the naive assumption that I wouldn’t mosh.

I felt like a punchbag. I was elbowed, headbutted, kicked in the face/teeth/leg/body, pushed, shoved, slammed against and I had a really scary moment where I fell during the forward surge even before Crossfaith’s set (nothing happened, thankfully). The “no diving/crowd surfing” sign pasted on the door was conveniently ignored and there were so many bodies that passed on top of me to the front that I lost count.


During Crossfaith’s set

But I found my “sweet spot” at the left side of the stage, kind of at the “outer regions” of the mosh. There was still moshing but less intense and you could escape it any time you wanted to. I managed to make it even closer to the stage than pictured and got a pretty sweet view of the band – here is 15 seconds of their set, with a failed attempt to record the circle that was going on.

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Over on the other side, the BASS ON TOP Stage had less people, and we watched THE 冠 (The Kanmuri), SHISHAMO and fade.

A really short snippet of THE 冠’s set which I liked! I had a lot of fun in the relatively milder moshing and the vocalist was also really entertaining! He stripped off piece by piece of his armour!

I felt like I almost died during SHISHAMO’s set because everyone was literally packed up like sardines and you could not move or breathe and I’m ridiculously short so guys would slam me against the back of the person in front of me but I was not going to suffocate to death. That level of crazy was not expected especially since they were more of a pop band????


fade during sound check

It was fade’s ‘last’ live in Kobe and their last live before June’s oneman tour which also marks the start of their hiatus, so I was very thankful and blessed I got to experience it in the first row.

Setlist:
1. Ever Free
2. ユレノナカ (Yure no naka)
3. Cross road (Jpn)
4. Beautiful

Vocalist Jon pulled this “stunt” during their last song where he jumped offstage and went into the crowd but his mic couldn’t get any signal that far away so you couldn’t hear him. The amused band members were laughing on stage, as well as many people in the audience! They were definitely a refreshing change from all the crazy moshing and metal/punk bands and I had a lot of fun, plus they looked amazing on stage.

It was a mad dash after their set to the other stage to catch Crossfaith and back into the moshing again.

I am battered, bruised and aching all over and I have to be up for school in a couple of hours but it was so worth it. I got a COMIN’ KOBE SKULLSHIT T-shirt, one of the last few designs that was left but which I LOVE because it is in purple!!

COMIN’ KOBE, see you next year. (Hopefully I will be more prepared then.)

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