Earlier this year, YG Entertainment announced that Big Bang is going to have a world tour. When it was revealed that they will be coming to the Philippines, I literally jumped off my seat and promised myself I will be there when they hold their first concert in the country. So I and my friends, Me-an and Sheila, paid close attention as to when the tickets will be released and when it was finally up on sale, we were probably among the ones who bought tickets at the very hour tickets sales were opened. After almost two months of waiting, October 24 finally came and boy, I have nothing to say but: FANTASTIC BABY!
Before the concert started, MVs were being played on two large screens but even then the screams of the crowd were already so loud. So imagine when finally Big Bang came out, the noise in the MOA Arena was deafening. Thankfully, the concert started at about 8:15 PM so there weren’t a lot of waiting. They sang more than 25 songs. I can’t recall everything because apart from the main set list, they sang about five (5) songs for encore. Here’s what I remember so far:
- Still Alive
- Hands Up
- Fantastic Baby
- How Gee
- Stupid Liar
- Knock Out
- High High
- Strong Baby
- What Can I Do
- Gara Gara Go
- Number 1
- Bad Boy
- Love Song
- Only Look at Me
- Wedding Dress
- Haru Haru
- Last Farewell
- Bad Boy
- Fantastic Baby
- One or two more songs I can’t Remember
I won’t talk much about the performances of Big Bang already because it’s pretty much established they are truly performers in the truest sense and they are so good live. I can’t find a fault in any of the members because they all delivered excellently. They had great rapport with the audience despite the language barrier. I think this was partly because Big Bang songs are really made for performing and the Filipino audience is always a great and welcoming crowd.
Breathe. Now let’s talk about the members! GD is GD. Either alone, with two members or even five, he stands out. He was a bit reserved last night compared to his other performances I see online, but his rapping did not falter a bit. It’s so hard to catch up with him! He’s like chugging words every second. There was one moment during the introduction of Blue and Lies that he was the first one to show up on stage. It was surreal. It was like, “Ah. These songs are literally his sons and daughters”. He also wasn’t able to perform his new songs but the he was kind enough to sample lines from One of Kind and Crayon. He was accompanied by other members by beat boxing. They were soooooooo GOOD.
Seung Ri. Seung Ri was the wittiest among the five members. He kept mumbling, “Manila, Manila! I love Manila!”. His English skills have improved a lot and it was even easier to understanding him compared to Taeyang. He had his own hilarious moments. For instance, a fan threw a panda stuff toy on stage so he grabbed it, placed it on stage and sat beside it while signing! It was such a joy to watch.
Taeyang. TOP is TOP but Taeyang is the one who acts like a top. He’s all over the stage. It was obvious he enjoyed a lot last night. He’s really a great dancer—always on point. He also did most of the talking. It was touching to hear how he’d like to come back to Manila. He’s also a crowd pleaser. He tore his shirt several times to the delight to the audience.
Daesung. He has an awesome voice. Before, when I watch BB live videos, I wonder if he’s always singing live because his voice is so solid. After hearing how he sings, I have no more questions. His voice holds so much power. He also talked a lot last night and I think he was the only one who mastered Sandara’s “Mahal ko kaya” greeting and wave. It was obvious he also had a great time last night because he would smile every time the crowd screamed.
TOP. Oh dear. Should we still talk about him? He was the obvious crowd favorite. Every time he uttered a word, the Arena thundered. He talked the least but the cheers for him were incomparable. He was bit shy at first but as the concert progressed, he turned into Choom TOP Mode! He kept hitting Seung Ri with his towel, he mimicked how the female dancers were walking, he totally forgot about performing when his shoe lace came loose, he caught a bra but threw it the moment he realized it was a bra, he wore a Miney Mouse headband, he poured water on Daesung and the audience and then danced alone at the end of the encore. He’s really 8D and that is why I (and maybe everyone else) loved and loves him so much!
Audience. Of course, we shouldn’t forget about the Filipino audience. I am amazed by the enthusiasm and passion Filipinos show every time I attend a concert—the deafening screams, the unified shouts, everything. It is always a surreal experience. Big Bang said we are one of the best crowds and I put my faith on that. We always sing with the artists, we scream endlessly, and we are on our feet up to the very last song. There was one very good moment that is stuck in my mind. During the chorus of Haru Haru, the members did not sing and turned their microphones to the crowd. The audience was singing solidly. It was eerie and at the same time amazing.
I’ve said a lot but of course words are not enough to describe the fun I had so much last night. But more than the fun, I am more thankful to have that once in a lifetime chance to attend the concert. I would also not forget how happy I felt every time the five of them was on stage. They’ve gone through so much last year and I was so afraid that they would disband. Seeing the five of them was a reminder they are still very much intact. As long as they are complete, the possibility of them returning in the Philippines may not be a farfetched dream.
Big Bang, thank you, thank you for coming to the Philippines. Ovation Productions, YG and Live Nation, thank you for bringing them here. Me-an and Sheila, thank you for the excellent seats and for sharing with me this experience. To everyone who attended the show, we are excellent guys! We were able to let Big Bang know how much we love them. It was evident from their reactions they had such a great time and I believed them when they said they will try to come back soon.
Ciao everyone and FANTASTIC BABY!