Gackt might be known in Japan for his catchy pop hits and sometimes overwhelming media presence, but his fans are well aware that live concerts are where he really shines. Gackt started as the vocalist for Malice Mizer, a visual kei band with an extreme sense of drama, especially on stage. This predilection for intense rock opera stayed with Gackt once he went solo in 1999. As he grew more successful with each album (as as his budget went up) his concerts grew ever more elaborate. Even so, the same intense attitude is present from the very beginning.
La réminiscence 〜空からの訪問者〜回想 was Gackt's first national tour. It took place in 2000 after the release of his first album, MARS. It is his least elaborate of his tours, as it was his first and as a new solo artist he did not have the funding from his label that he would later have.
The tour did not have a strong main theme, but it seemed to revolve around the idea of reflecting on the past and utilized quite a bit of flight imagery, in connection to the subtitle of the tour, 空からの訪問者, or "visitor from the sky." The main place in which the flight imagery is used is in the first song of the show, "Ares," which has Gackt descending from the ceiling on a wire and then moving in impossibly high leaps and bounds through a set shrouded with huge white sheets as he sings in an eerily high falsetto.
The most powerful part of the tour is the song "emu~for my dear~." Many fans have speculated that this song was written in memory of a dead friend, and Gackt's performance of it would seem to back that up. He speaks of singing the song for an unnamed person and then launches into an extremely emotional performance of the song. The usually always polished Gackt somewhat looses his composure during the song and by the end of the song has the mike stand in a death grip and is screaming the words into the mike with an intensity that is much more moving than if he had stuck to a virtuosic vocal performance.
The show breaks in the middle and the surreal, dark-lit atmosphere of the first half gives way to a more upbeat second half. His band comes to the front of the stage and interacts more with the crowd and Gackt switches to his more cheerful songs. This half of the concert suffers somewhat by his lack of much professional choreography. Gackt is a mean dancer, as he demonstrates in later tours, but when left to his own devices on stage the results are often rather awkward.
However, this second half of the show has the appearance of Gackt's infamous dancing cats. On the song "U+K" a line of dancers comes on stage, all dressed in giant stuffed cat suits, like a chorus line of overly cute college mascots. It's one of the stranger parts of the show, but the audience seemed to like it and so did Gackt as the cats appear in every one of his tours thereafter.
Gackt's most shocking (and famous) performance was during this tour as well. The song "Vanilla," with its highly sexual lyrics, gets quite the treatment onstage as Gackt goes from one side of the stage to the other, harassing the members of his backup band and even pretending to receive a blow job on stage from one of his guitarists. Although perhaps initially shocking, the band mostly just looks like they're having fun being silly.
As with all of his concerts, the video release of the tour was filmed during the final concert at Yokohama Arena. It's a well-filmed concert and the DVD version is region-free which makes it handy for overseas fans. Sadly a few of the songs that were performed on the tour do not make it onto the video, namely the performance of his first big single, "Mizerable."
The set list:
Emu~for my dear~
Kono dare mo inai heya de