Live Report

Red Velvet, EXO-SC, SuperM, and SUPER JUNIOR at a-nation Online 2020

28/09/2020 2020-09-28 19:16:00 KoME Author: Oona

Red Velvet, EXO-SC, SuperM, and SUPER JUNIOR at a-nation Online 2020

4 Korean groups performed at this year's a-nation event in Japan.

© a-nation. All rights reserved.
The annual a-nation lives, held by Japanese entertainment giant Avex Group, got changed into an online concert this year due to the COVID-19 pandemic. In addition to Japanese and Chinese artists, the list of performers included SM Entertainment's groups Red Velvet, EXO-SC, SuperM, and SUPER JUNIOR.

Watching the concert on mu-mo's service was quite easy. Even though the site is in Japanese, switching between the three different "stages" for the desired artists was straightforward. The performances began punctually on time and in between them, fans were shown some ads and an introduction video of the next performer. The online concert had it's technical side work extremely well - the connection barely had any issues, the vocals and music were transmitted clearly and the video quality was great. Viewers had the chance to chat with each other in real-time beside the video stream.

The first K-pop performer of the day was Red Velvet. The show began with Monster by Irene & Seulgi, the group's sub-unit that has recently debuted this summer. The graphics behind the duo displayed a window of a gothic-style church, fitting well together with the song's dark mood. Irene and Seulgi wore stylish looking shimmery outfits in black and white with the backup dancers in matching shades. After Irene and Seulgi's change of clothes, the rest of Red Velvet's line-up, Joy and Yeri, joined the stage without Wendy who is still recovering from her accident at the end of last year at the rehearsals of SBS Gayo Daejeon. The quartet was now wearing an elegant set of shimmering black outfits. Their first song together was the widely popular and award-winning Psycho with background graphics featuring structures from ancient Egypt. Psycho, a song describing a certain kind of feeling following the end of a relationship, and the R'n'B track Bad Boy that was performed after, represent the sexy "Velvet" concept of Red Velvet. At the end of their stage, the group performed cute songs such as the upbeat & cheerful Umpah Umpah and the summery Red Flavor which on the other hand represent their "Red" concept. Between their songs, Red Velvet had the chance to introduce themselves and speak briefly in Japanese. Staying loyal to their style, the group performed in a serenely professional way throughout their show.

After a small break, the K-pop performances continued on another stage with EXO's sub-unit of Sehun and Chanyeol, EXO-SC. The unit who made their debut last year started with the easygoing hip-hop song What a Life from their debut EP and then moved on to perform Rodeo Station from their recent album in July. The men's laid-back and radiant performance was accented by their backup dancers dressed up in hip-hop style and their own trendy outfits that had a slight rodeo-like touch to them. Sehun and Chanyeol briefly greeted the viewers and encouraged the audience to have fun. Between a set of fresh songs, the fans got to hear their duet We Young dating back to the time before their debut as a sub-unit duo. The men ended their stage performing their album's title song 1 Billion Views which had a creative dance choreography where the backup dancers used the lights of their phones as part of their performance. Sehun and Chanyeol's lighthearted way of having fun during their performance had the effect of leaving viewers in a good mood well after the show ended.

The third Korean performer of the day was SuperM, a supergroup that made their debut in 2019. The group's line-up includes members from SM Entertainment's 4 different boy groups: there's Taemin from SHINee, Baekhyun and Kai from EXO, Taeyong and Mark from NCT 127, and Ten and Lucas from WayV. SuperM began their performance with their debut single Jopping, followed by the trap-influenced Super Car of the same EP. These songs combine singing and rapping with powerful dance choreography leading to an intensive show. Graphics shown in the background were befitting the themes of the songs with visuals such as futuristic lights and patterns, sceneries, and motors. At this point, it became clear that all SM Entertainment's artists were dressed in attires utilizing similar color schemes with some shimmering highlights. The member's comments between the songs and at the end of the performance were partly in Korean and partly in Japanese, since for example, Taemin speaks Japanese fluently. Near the ending of their stage, SuperM performed their recent singles such as With You, a song that brings up the importance of shared moments, and 100, a techno-influenced dance track, both of which will be included on their new album Super One out on September 25.

As for a-nation's Korean performances, the day reached its climax in SUPER JUNIOR's stage. A brief glance at these men, one could recognize the years of experience they have under their belt and the joy they get out of performing - the veterans of K-pop, debuted 15 years ago, now enjoying their performance even in such unusual circumstances as an online live. Surprisingly, SUPER JUNIOR started their stage with one of their older songs, U, a single from 2008. Next up however was their latest single, hip hop-style song 2YA2YAO! and the energetic dance track Super Clap off their album Time_Slip from last year. During 2YA2YAO! SUPER JUNIOR used a creative way to integrate their fandom into the show by displaying video material featuring dozens of their fans. In between the songs, the members demonstrated their language skills by introducing themselves in Japanese, Korean, Chinese, and English. For their next songs, the group had picked the Japanese versions of two of their older hits, Mamacita and Mr. Simple. Siwon, Shindong, Yesung, Ryeowook, and Kyuhyun were wearing mostly different kinds of all-black suits, whereas Leeteuk's, Donghae's and Eunhyuk's outfits were half in silver. In their final comments, they told viewers that they had fun during the concert, but at the same time, they were also sorry for not being able to meet the fans. For their last song, SUPER JUNIOR performed Devil from 2015, a song that plays with sexy themes.

The a-nation online stream experience was similar to watching Korean music shows; the performance and the filming of it, including each of the camera angles had been choreographed up to the last detail. The typical and important characteristics that set the mood in traditional performances - spontaneity and the connection between the performer and the audience - were not there. Nevertheless, for fans who're looking for simplicity and convenience, well-produced events like these are still considered a good option.


Related Artists