Japanese singer Hikaru Utada concluded her Laughter in the Dark Tour with a final show at Makuhari Messe on December 9, 2018 – the date on which she debuted as an artist exactly twenty years ago.
The tour began at Yokohama Arena on November 6 after which Utada hit up Fukuoka, Nagoya, Osaka, Saitama and Makuhari for a total of 12 concerts in six cities. The 20-track set list was a line-up of tracks perfect for celebrating the singer’s 20 year reign. It featured everything from her debut song Automatic up to Hatsukoi from her latest album, covering Utada’s early days to her current status as a seasoned songstress. Her iconic discography pulled the heartstrings of all fans on the tour: many tears were shed during one particular awe-inspiring time skip when she performed her huge 1999 hit First Love and then immediately transitioned onto the 2018 number Hatsukoi.
During her first speech at the final show she kindled a fire amongst fans as she looked back over the past 20 years: “Good evening! Thank you all for making your way out here. Today is the day of my 20th anniversary. Getting to spend such a day like this is honestly like celebrating a birthday. I’m no good at acting like the star of the show but I am delighted to be here. Thank you! I can see all of you to the back [of the room], so let’s have fun together!”
This tour, which was Hikaru Utada’s first in 12 years, saw a huge 140,000 fans in attendance. She delivered a tour that not only celebrated her hit songs over the past 20 years but also showcased what the future holds as she continues to push forward in her career.
It has also been announced that a PlayStationVR (PSVR) experience entitled Hikaru Utada Laughter in the Dark Tour 2018 – “Hikaru” & “Chikai” – VR is set to be released for free in January featuring live performances of the Japanese Kingdom Hearts theme songs Hikari and Chikai from the tour. Players with PS Plus will be able to download Hikari on December 25 this year.
Additionally, the official opening movie to the highly-anticipated forthcoming video game Kingdom Hearts III has been released and features a 90-song snippet from Utada’s new song Face My Fears made in collaboration with international singer-songwriter and producer Skrillex. The song will be released on CD on January 18, 2019.
Remastered versions of three of Hikaru Utada’s albums―Deep River (2002), Ultra Blue (2006) and Heart Station (2008)―with 24bit/96kHz high-resolution audio were also digitally released on December 9 all with to celebrate her 20th anniversary. A remastered version of Distance (2001) will also drop on January 23, 2019.
Fans can look forward a string of new tracks on each album: Hayatochiri on Distance, Simple And Clean on Deep River, Sanctuary (Opening) on Ultra Blue and Fly Me To The Moon (In Other Words) -2007 MIX- on Heart Station.
As Hikaru Utada enters the 21st year of her career and with the release date for Kingdom Hearts III on January 25 drawing nearer, it’s time to look forward to what she has planned next.
Face My Fears
On Sale: January 18, 2019
Price: ¥1,400 (Tax Included)
Order Page: https://erj.lnk.to/Tb3UTWN
Face My Fears Limited Pressing Vinyl Edition
On Sale: March 6, 2019
Price: ¥2,500 [ESJL 3114]
*Includes poster drawn by Kingdom Hearts series director Tetsuya Nomura.
Order Page: https://erj.lnk.to/zdxOJWN
Hikaru Utada Hi Resolution Remastering Album Website: https://www.universal-music.co.jp/utada-hikaru/2018-remastered
Hikaru Utada Official Website: www.utadahikaru.jp
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