【Concert Report】
the Opening Day of BUCK-TICK’s latest album’s National Tour

24 April 2023

text by Okubo Yuka
photos by Seitaro Tanaka


BUCK-TICK held a concert at J:COM Hall Hachioji in Tokyo, kicking off the national tour BUCK-TICK TOUR 2023 異空-IZORA- for their latest album on 19 April. Here’s what happened.



On 12 April, when the flowers were in full bloom, BUCK-TICK released their new album 異空 -IZORA- which thrilled fans as their “latest and best” update. With this latest release, their nation-wide tour BUCK-TICK TOUR 2023 異空-IZORA- started on 19 April, at J:COM Hall Hachioji in Tokyo.

As the lights turned down and the first instrumental track of the album QUANTUM played, drummer Yagami Toll, bassist Higuchi Yutaka, guitarist Hoshino Hidehiko and guitarist Imai Hisashi came on stage one by one to the cheers and applause of the audience. Although the audience remained masked, this was to be the first tour in about 3 years and 4 months where the ban on audience vocalisations was lifted. When vocalist Sakurai Atsushi appeared centrestage, completing the band, the cheers grew ever louder. This is the moment everyone had been waiting for.

Showered in claps and cheers, the band performed freely like fish to water. With their white costumes and matching equipment, guitarists Imai and Hoshino who usually create a beautiful symmetry on stage looked like a pair of wings. Their two guitars would intertwine to sound one single heavy riff, or take light steps in pleasant unison. On the other hand, the  rhythm team of Yagami and Higuchi were dressed in black as they accompanied the songs with both soft, warm bass notes and emotional heavy rhythms.

And there was Sakurai who took many forms whenever he spread his arms; a scarecrow; an angel; an aircraft. What is it he wishes for with open arms? Is it forgiveness for holding a beloved child in gun-toting hands? Is it the acceptance of diversity? Is it LOVE&PEACE? All the protagonists depicted in 異空 -IZORA-’s songs are so intense that they take hold of Sakurai the moment the song’s intro begins. Every gesture and movement is filled with the power of each character’s emotions in each song; so beautiful, so raw.

This performance consisted mainly of songs from the 異空 -IZORA- album like Sayonara Shelter destroy and regenerate-Mix which had warmth added to it with the gorgeously articulated violin, Mugen LOOP -LEAP- which had an intro which sounded like a gathering of beautiful fragile bubbles of sound, and Boogie Woogie which Sakurai introduced as  “a story from over 35 years ago recreated using the latest technology”. 

As earlier described, all the songs were intense. I was curious to find out what older songs would be incorporated in here, and the final result was beyond anything I could’ve imagined. They create indescribable stories by fleshing out the 異空 -IZORA- songs and adding backstories to them. It was especially so after Taiyou to Icarus; a painful, tragic, gentle, yet beautiful world which seemed to encompass everything awaited.

As I watched the show, Sakura, a poem by Ibaraki Noriko, a poet who lived during the war suddenly came to mind. It describes the fragility and preciousness of human life by comparing it to that of a flower. BUCK-TICK sings: Together with life, “Now bloom in exuberance”. As I held dear this moment where I am enjoying their show, I wonder how many more times can I watch a BUCK-TICK concert, like how the poem asks how many times can we see cherry blossoms bloom in one lifetime.

The tour has just begun. How will the songs of 異空 -IZORA- grow in depth as this tour goes on from late spring to early and eventually mid-summer? And what kind of sky will each and every audience member find in their hearts by the time the final performance arrives on 23 July? This is a show that draws people to watch it again and again to find out how the story of this production will change. I hope to enjoy these shifting skies to the fullest.




Concert/Event Information

Wednesday, 19 April 2023 — Tokyo: J:COM Hall Hachioji
Sunday, 23 April 2023 — Tochigi: Utsunomiya City Cultural Center, Large Hall
Saturday, 13 May 2023 — Kagawa: High Staff Hall, large hall (Kanonji City Meeting Hall)
Sunday, 14 May 2023 — Okayama: Kurashiki City Auditorium
Saturday, 20 May 2023 — Kyoto: ROHM Theatre Kyoto, main hall
Sunday, 21 May 2023 — Hyogo: Kobe Kokusai Kaikan Kokusai Hall
Saturday, 27 May 2023 — Kanagawa: Pacifico Yokohama National Convention Hall
Saturday, 3 June 2023 — Aichi: Japan Special Ceramic Industry Civic Center, Forest Hall (ex. Nagoya Civic Hall)
Saturday, 10 June 2023 — Ishikawa: Hondanomori Hall
Sunday, 11 June 2023 — Nagano: Nagano City Arts Center, main hall
Saturday, 17 June 2023 — Osaka: Orix Theater (ex. Osaka Welfare Pension Hall)
Sunday, 18 June 2023 — Osaka: Orix Theater (ex. Osaka Welfare Pension Hall)
Saturday, 24 June 2023 — Hiroshima: Ueno Gakuen Hall (Hiroshima Prefectural Culture and Arts Hall)
Sunday, 25 June 2023 — Fukuoka: Fukuoka Sunpalace Hotel & Hall
Saturday, 1 July 2023 — Hokkaido: Sapporo Kanamoto Hall (Sapporo Civic Hall)
Sunday, 9 July 2023 — Miyagi: Sendai Sun Plaza Hall
Saturday, 15 July 2023 — Gunma: Takasaki City Theatre, large theatre
Monday (holiday), 17 July 2023 — Shizuoka: Shizuoka City Culture Hall, large hall
Saturday, 22 July 2023 — Tokyo: Tokyo Garden Theatre
Sunday, 23 July 2023 — Tokyo: Tokyo Garden Theatre

Early bird tickets: 9,900 yen (w/ tax)
Tickets currently on sale

For more information, please visit the dedicated website:





Translation: Yoshiyuki
Source: BARKS