Friday, January 29, 2016

Infinite's 2nd World Tour IE in LA Concert Experience

It's so hard to begin this post, thinking that this may be the last time I see Infinite, and how this venue is where I first saw Infinite back in 2013. I go~ First off, here is how I looked, adorned in my Infinite jewelry and with my 여봉^^

Infinite's LA stop of their second world tour, Infinite Effect, took place on Sunday, January 10th, 2016 at Microsoft Theater (formally Nokia Theater), which is the same venue that Infinite performed at during their first world tour, One Great Step, in 2013. I also wrote about my experience at Infinite's Vancouver stop Part 1 and Part 2, as well as the fansite goods I got in both Vancouver and LA here.

A bit about the ticketing: despite knowing how ticketing for Infinite's LA concert typically goes, I stupidly bought a ticket on the official via their "find best seat available" service, which is the only way to choose your seat, and then I found a better ticket that was more to the side but 8 rows closer and much cheaper, also on I ended up with 2 decent tickets (but I sold the first one to my friend). I should have just waited to see what would be available on, which was what I did for OGS. In the end, my seat was in Right Orchestra, Row N, Seat 101, which is about the 20th row in the furthest right section, but the aisle seat closer to the center. My first ticket was the on the center aisle in Left Center Orchestra, Row V, Seat 401, and it cost $144. Yet my current ticket was only $118 because it was Orch2, despite being significantly closer.
The concert began at 8PM, and I arrived at the venue at 5:15PM and it was already filled with so many fans, unlike in Vancouver. The digital screen on the building showed the beautiful display of Infinite. (Yesterday when I came to this area for Apink's showcase, they didn't reveal this display yet).
Most of the support banners and other goodies had already been distributed, but I managed to get 3 banners and a glowstick from generous Inspirits spreading their excitement and support for Infinite.

I also saw the same fansites selling the same goods but in different sets (though Honeytree was no longer selling the calendar) but decided to check them out again anyways. For Hogam and Honeytree, I showed the fansite masters my photos of their goods I had already gotten in IE Vancouver, and they were very nice at just selling me the goods I was missing for a different price instead of buying another set just for the one item I was missing (since they rearranged what's included in each set since Vancouver).

I then left the venue and came back at 6PM. There are about 8 doors to enter the venue, and already all of them had such long lines. I got in one of the lines and it was quite intimidating going to the concert alone, but soon I started talking with others around me and we all fangirled over Infinite and Kpop in general. I love this sort of community where strangers can just instantly fangirl and have this inner connection.
At around 7PM, the doors open and everyone has to walk through an X-ray machine, though it was pretty lax. Inside the venue, the Infinite music video loop was playing on the screen. It was amazing being in the audience and singing along and fangirling at all the MVs. This photo was taken just as I entered inside the house (this sounds weird, but I just found out that's the part of a theater where the audience is) at the Center Left Orchestra 
As mentioned earlier, my ticket was for Right Orchestra, Row N, Seat 101, which is the aisle seat on the aisle closer to the center. Despite sounding far (remember the pit seats are in front of the lettered seats), because I was on the aisle, I had a really clear view of the entire stage. It helped even more that I was a lot taller than the people in front of me,

This concert follows the same setlist as the one in IE Vancouver, so I'll list out the setlist but I'll only talk about the differences (ie. crowd atmosphere, ments) that I experienced in LA.

Intro VCR, BTD, Paradise, Be Mine -- 8:10PM Start

Intro Ment -- The members started out with "Hello, we are Infinite," and then every member introduced himself in English! These are what I think they said (it's hard to hear from my video):

Sungkyu: Hello everyone. I'm Sungkyu.
Dongwoo: Hello everyone...aah...whooo~!...I'm very spice boy Dongwoo. Long time no see.
Myungsoo: Hi. I'm L. I'm your boyfriend L.
Hoya: What's up guys! I'm Hoya!
Woohyun: Uh, hello. Hello! (Audience: Hello!)  Hi! (Audience: Hi!) I'm yellow haired Woohyun.
Sungjong: I'm your sweet boy Sungjong!
Sungyeol: Hi, I'm ... Sungyeol. (I couldn't hear it).

The members then spoke in Korean how they're back after two years. In English, Dongwoo said, "I feel like you're our friends and our family." In Korean, Sungyeol said "we promised we'd come back two years ago, are you all here?" In Korean, Sungjong said, "we miss you guys a lot and it's two years now that we're meeting Inspirits in the same place in LA. You missed us, right?" And then Jjong cuffed his ear and used his arm to motion for us to cheer. Then Dongwoo spoke in English, "Your face is like, your face is like weather (?), like sunshine." Then Dongwoo dramatically partly took off his jacket, aah he's such a good entertainer and MC! Hoya then said "I'm Hoya," and he gave his same speech in English on how he feels sorry for Inspirits worrying about his injury and how he's much better now.

Dance Break, Destiny, Tic Toc -- Throughout the concert, the lighting was just so gorgeous.

2nd Ment -- Dongwoo spoke a lot in English. He was joking around and looking at the audience and said "You are so perfect girlfriend...You are perfect father. I'm sorry!" He was so funny. Then the translator translated Dongwoo's English by saying "I'm sorry" -.- This is the same translator as in IE Vancouver, yet somehow she got a lot worse. Sungkyu started introducing their Reality album in Korean, and the translator kept referring to the album as "Realist." I liked how Sungkyu said that this is Infinite's first time performing the songs from Reality in the US; it's just nice to make this concert seem special out of all of Infinite's concerts.

발걸음 (pictured above), 러브레터, 마주보면 서 있어 -- This is definitely my favorite set of performances, as they really show every member's vocals. "Footsteps" was absolutely perfection; I loved hearing Dongwoo and Sungyeol's high notes, and Sungkyu really owned the stage during his lines. During "Love Letter," Sungjong got the crowd engaged by having everyone move their arms in the air. And for "Standing Face to Face," it was so amazing when Sungkyu was holding his note while Dongwoo rapped. Sungkyu really stole the show for me at how he owned the stage; he always really feels the music and gets so into it whereas the others stand there and sing much more calmly. Sungkyu's energy and power are just amazing.


Everyday (Woohyun solo) -- Woohyun was really pumped and said "Are you ready?" and jumped right into his solo stage. Woohyun really owned the stage and showed so much emotion. The more I listen to this song, the more I love it and can't wait for it to be officially released. There was also a successful banner project during this stage.

바빠서 Sorry, 예뻐 (Infinite H stage) -- During "바빠서 Sorry," the members rapped so close to the front row. People were so close, they were like grabbing up Dongwoo's pants...(pictured). There was a dance break where Hoya and then Dongwoo were break dancing! After Dongwoo did his moves, he made this confident gesture. At the start of "예뻐," Hoya energized the crowd by saying "Put your hands up~ Say yeah~ Ah yeah~" and then at the end, got the crowd to sing "ooh la la la la."

Kontrol (Sungkyu solo) -- Most of the songs throughout this concert were of the original style, but for "Kontrol," it was nice that they added a little remix-like intro. There was also a banner project for this stage that said "규지지 너여야만해." I had arrived too late to the venue to receive this banner, which makes me sad because I really like the message.

가슴이 뛴다, My Girl (Infinite F stage) -- The beginning of "가슴이 뛴다" also had a remix. My favorite part of the choreography is during Myungsoo's second time singing "Don't know why" when Sungyeol tugs at the back of Sungjong's collar like a doll. During "My Girl," there was a lot of fan service and stuff animals being thrown to the crowd. Myungsoo held the basket of stuffed animals over his shoulder so cutely while singing his lines. Sungyeol again threw so many at once with one hand; I don't know why it always looks so beautiful to me, the way he throws them. Sungyeol and Sungjong also threw a joint heart together. This is the first time I noticed Myungsoo switching the mic between his hands a lot to do all the dance moves; it seems like for all their other choreographs, they don't switch hands too often and just withhold from doing certain hand movements in order to hold the mic. I love Myungsoo's gentlemanly bow at the end (pictured). 

Last Romeo Original Version Music Video VCR

For You (pictured), Nothing's Over, 맡겨 -- At the start of "For You," Woohyun shouted, "Put your hands up!" and got the crowd going. During "Nothing's Over," my favorite part is always Hoya's "I say 'Ho,' you say 'Ya'!" While the other members were dancing, Sungyeol was the only one who did some fan service. In the end, I think it was Woohyun that said "I love you" and then "You too?"and everyone just waved instead of doing their usual heart throwing. For "맡겨," there was lots of fan service and taking selcas.

Cover Girl -- "Cover Girl" was definitely the climax of the LA concert, but maybe not in a good way. Right after "맡겨," all the lights turned off, the band played some soothing instrumentals, the members casually walked off the stage while Dongwoo said "okay bye bye" and Woohyun said "안녕" and...suddenly all the lights turned back on (including the house lights where the audience is), the music for "Cover Girl" started, and the members weren't on stage...they were in the aisles alongside the audience! Sungyeol was standing in the beginning of my aisle and girls went right up to them...instinctively I followed suit and saw him right before my eyes. People were pushing so hard to get up to Yeol; people pushed me completely over a seat and I fought hard not to lose my was much worse than pit, and so uncontrollable. Yeol was with a bodyguard and slowly made his way up the aisle, and during his second rap as he was coming back down to the stage, he walked right past me. Then I noticed Woohyun's blond hair moving along the horizontal aisle between the pit and center orchestra sections, but other than that, I couldn't see where the other members were. Then all the members made their way back on stage and finished the song.

That entire song was such a blur; the above was just from my recollection. I watched my recording of it and it was just as chaotic, my phone ended up recording the backs of the aggressive crowd more than anything. In my video I did see that Woohyun had brought up on stage someone's smiley face cushion, and he cutely held it under his arm while he danced the ending of the song.

VCR -- Everyone went back to their seats, and I noticed across the aisle was a woman (late 20s to early 30s, she was taking pictures on her DSLR and checking them throughout the concert; she seemed more like a reporter and not a fan) was crouched on the ground and holding her hand. It seemed like she was trampled on...about eight security guards came over with flashlights and accessed her throughout the VCR and the next two songs, and then she had to be escorted out in a wheelchair. I felt so bad for her (and annoyed at how distracting the guards were at the aisle).

엔딩을 부탁해, Moonlight (pictured) -- Infinite had changed into one of their "Bad" stage outfits. Woohyun's long notes were so beautiful during "엔딩을 부탁해." During the first verse of "Moonlight," Myungsoo bent down, grabbed an extra streamer from one of the previous stages, crumpled it, and then threw it to the side instead of dancing along with the others right before his first line. Then later on Myungsoo's line overlapping Sungyeol's part was such perfection.

3rd Ment -- The members, with Sungkyu being the MC, talked about the solo and subunit stages. Someone threw a t-shirt to Woohyun, and he used it to wipe sweat off of his forehead. Myungsoo walked out to the right of the stage; he seems like he never pays attention during ments and just goes off in his own world. In Korean, Woohyun talked about how he made his song, "Everyday," for us Inspirits and asked how it was. Then he said "셋 넷" (3 4) and pointed the mic to us, expecting us to sing part of his song, and everyone just screamed instead. They said that Woohyun's song will be on the next Infinite album. Then while talking about Infinite H's stage, Dongwoo said in English, "Yah, I'm so hip hop. Hip hop is life...Pretty. Inspirits pretty...Infinite hands up!" while Sungyeol started dancing in place. While talking about Infinite F's stage, Woohyun sang the line "가슴이 뛴다." Myungsoo, still not paying attention, leaned to the very front of the stage, grabbed a handful of confetti, and tossed it on Woohyun (pictured). Woohyun did the same to Sungyeol twice while Sungyeol was talking about their stage. Then two cleaners came out to mop away the confetti. Sungkyu ended the ment by saying in Korean, "It's already been more than half of the concert. Are you guys enjoying it? If you are, then we're happy."

Back, Chaser -- The famous ending pose of "Back." Sadly there was no fanchant during "Back," (besides me), only the audience singing along during the chorus.

4th Ment -- Dongwoo said "Time is so fast." Sungkyu spoke in Korean that this is the last song (before their encore) and gave his ending speech on behave of the group. Then Hoya said "Hi, I'm Hoya," and introduced all the staff and band members in Korean. He told us to clap for the CEO. During this, Myungsoo had been drinking his bottled water, and dropped it, spilling water on the stage. He started using his hands to wipe it with the towels, then he and Sungyeol started shuffle-wiping it with their feet while facing together (pictured); it was so cute and entertaining!

Bad -- Afterwards, Infinite went backstage and the audience began shouting "encore" on and off instead of the usual fanchant. Later on some shouted "돌아와," but overall it was a disorganized fail.


다시 돌아와 -- They came out in their red suits this time! I thought it was thoughtful how they brought both their blue suits and white suits to alternate for their encores.

Ending Ment -- Each member gave their own ending speech.

Myunsoo began, speaking in Korean, "If you scream louder, we can come back earlier," getting the crowd much louder. He continued speaking in Korean, then ended in English with, "Until we meet again. Remember, I'm your Romeo, L. Thank you."

Sungjong was next, and he had loads of cheesy English lines! A bit of what I caught, "My lovely Inspirit, are you having fun tonight? Thank you for loving me and supporting me all the time. You're my baby! I love you for who you are. Thank you LA, I love you!"

Hoya spoke all in English, "Hi! (Waves) I'm Hoya. It was two years ago when I promised we'll come back for you. It took a little longer than I expected. Tonight could have happened because of you. I wish I could stop the time to be here longer with you. Let's remember this day forever. When we come back next time, we'll be much better in every way. Until then, don't go anywhere." I love how Hoya always tries to communicate with fans well; it's so touching.

Woohyun began in Korean, "Do you guys love us? Do you? This was our second LA concert. When will be the third? When we come back, will you welcome us? Even tomorrow? Anytime? Let's promise." Then he held out his pinky finger, and we all followed. Then he said, "사랑하다. I love you. I love you. (Throws hearts) Thank you. 사랑해요."

Dongwoo spoke mostly all in English, and at one point he used Korean but quickly switched back to English. He said to Woohyun, "You are done? It's my turn!" Then continued, "Yesterday I met my friend in LA downtown...anyway, we ate, played games, and had cocktails. So, LA is like, my house. We'll see you in Korea, okay? You can come to Korea? I love you. See ya! I love LA! So feels like many freedom. Thank you. I'm done. You're turn (looking at Sungyeol)."

Sungyeol spoke in Korean, mostly about his red hair (lol). "I dyed my hair red yesterday. I don't recommend you dying your hair red, it's going to be really hard...Let's make a promise. You'll come to the next concert, right? 사랑해요. (Throws a big heart)." Then in English, he said, "End."

Sungkyu closed the ending ment, speaking in Korean. "I don't know where to start...(long pause)...Korea is really cold right now but LA has really nice weather. If you want really cold weather, you can come to Korea in January." Leave it up by Gyu to talk about the weather^^ "I hope you have made good memories like I did. Thank you for staying here tonight. We made this next song during out last tour. If you know the song, please sing together (which no one did)." Then he really coolly said in English, "Okay, Love you." I can't get over my feels of how cool he sounded!

함께 -- During the first verse, Dongwoo shook his head like a wet dog drying off!

After the song finished, the lights went dark, then the stage lights came back on with an explosion of their famous white confetti. Infinite did their 90 degree bow for a really long time. Then Sungjong took a doll from the crowd, Sungkyu kept bowing with his hands together, and the others waved and made sure to go to the left and to the right. Woohyun stayed on the right side of a really long time, then he ran to the left and threw hearts. Woohyun and Hoya were the last ones on stage, continuing to wave to fans, and finally Hoya was the last one (and then my phone cut off the recording -.-).

Ending Credits VCR

After watching the ending VCR, I quickly went out to the side door where Infinite left the venue last time. Already so many fans were lined up on the sidewalk across the street from the side exit, and a security guard was very strict as to where we could stand. I waited for about 10 minutes, and around 10:50, two black SUVs drove out. Dongwoo was in the first car and was waving out the left window while Hoya (pictured) was throwing hearts from the other car. They were so nice~ 

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