It could have been a colder winter, but this year the snow has not reached London yet. I think this made the people, who were waiting outside the venue the whole night, in a certain way, lucky.
The United Cube group arrived in London on December 4th and already many fans were waiting to welcome them at the airport. I do not know if they were as surprised as I was to see the one block-long queue of people from every country outside the venue. The choice of the O2 Academy in Brixton could seem a bit bizarre for those who live in London, since Brixton is a multiethnic district of African and Caribbean descendants, but I guess, at the same time, it was the perfect choice. The O2 Academy hosted some of the biggest names of the international music industry such as Madonna, Bob Dylan, Rihanna and it would be the first time to host an Asian group.
The entrance to the venue went smoothly. They were showing MVs of 4minute, BEAST, G.NA repeatedly to kill the time, while journalists from the YTN interviewed people around and shot the place. It is not a big venue but it was enough to contain the 3500 fans armed with posters, cards, lighting sticks and flags.
After few commercials, with no pre-announcement whatsoever, 4minute was standing in front of us, all of them dressed in white suits. They started with “Hot Issue” followed by “I My Me Mine” and “Heart To Heart.” During this song HyunA started to make a real first contact with the audience, with many cute poses and greetings for the fans with the camera, but unfortunately she badly slipped on the floor and right after the song she disappeared for a while.
The rest of the group introduced themselves, and, since they could not rely on their English skills, they brought with them an awkward interpreter. They asked fans “Where are you from?” At that moment I found out that the audience was not only from Asia, but also from France, Germany, UK (obviously) and rest of Europe. The most amazing thing was that they were able to sing along in Korean. At that moment one could realize how strong the K-Pop is, its popularity, and the power of the Internet to bring all of us there.
After a short break and chat with the audience, 4minute left the stage and HyunA came back again with her sexy and cheerful choreography of “Bubble Pop” and it was very fun when all the audience followed her with the background sound “Ooh,” typical of this song. 4minute started singing again together with “Huh”, “Mirror Mirror” and “Muzik”.
It was G.NA’s turn on the stage. She astonished the viewers with her good control of English, as she grew up in Canada. She was wearing a black dress, with sparkling gold sequin on the chest with a black blazer that clearly exposed her model-like physique. She started with “Black & White” followed by “I’ll Back Off So You Can Live.” After a little chat about broken hearts with the audience she performed a short cover of Rihanna’s “Take a Bow”, Beyoncé’s “Halo” continuing with “Supa Solo”, “Banana,” which is not easy to hear on Korean TV, and ended with “Top Girl.”
Without having the time to say “Wow! She’s so beautiful,” BEAST was already on the stage and the audience really went wild. They started with “Shock”, followed by “Breath”, “Bad Girl”, “Special” and “Rainbow.”
They really did pure fan service, taking the cameras from the people on the first row and shooting photos, taking banners and gifts from the fans. Just as I started to think it was a little bit disappointing because they did not say a word in English, except for “Thank you London,” they disappeared and played a video in English about their history, how hard the time before their debut was and before making it big. They tried to thank the fans with “an everlasting love” for their support.
It was a very touching moment, but soon enough HyunA and Hyunseung put the audience on fire again with “Troublemaker” (this time only a cheek kiss!). BEAST continued their small concert with “Lightless” where Yoseob really stood out with his powerful voice, “The Day That Rain Comes”, “Fiction”, “I Like You The Best”, ”Beautiful” and for last “V.I.U.”
BEAST left the stage, the concert got to its end and audience called for an encore. As the last performance the United Cube group sang together “Fly So High” with an explosion of confetti and fireworks.
It was a memorable concert. We were not so many, but I hope we were able to greet the United Cube artists warmly enough. I am not saying one artist was better than the other, however I have to say that BEAST really rocked the show. You need to see with your own eyes how much passion they put into their performance, you really feel as a part of something, you really feel like a fan.
It was so nice to see them sing, play and have fun together as a team on the stage, like they are there for you or, like G.NA said, “It is very cold outside, we will make tonight hot.”