United Cube concert has finally kicked off their world tour, flying all the way from South Korea to gracing the stage at the Brixton 02 Academy in London , England. Monday 5th December marks the day in which the United Kingdom has now officially had their first K-pop concert in which Korean Pop Artists Beast , 4minute and G.NA under the company Cube entertainment were the First Asian pop artists to perform at Brixton Academy , which is one of the leading London venues for some of the most influential artists such as The Clash , Bob Dylan , Madonna and many more of infamous names in the music industry.
The United Cube concert tour first commenced at the Seoul Olympic Stadium in South Korea on August 14th 2011. It then slowly progressed to Japan and has now expanded to London , United Kingdom. It will also arrive in Brazil on the December 13th 2011.
Prior to news of the concert this year , K-pop has became unmistakeably more popular and is slowly becoming a world wide phenomenon . When information was released revealing that Cube entertainment would come to England , there was a general buzz around all UK Kpop forums and social networking sites, including Twitter , Facebook and Tumblr. UK Kpop fans expressed their up most gratitude to having K-pop finally come to the United Kingdom after anticipating their arrival for so long.
As soon as you walked towards the 02 Brixton Academy you could feel the excitement and energy from all the elated Kpop fans queuing up. Over 3000 fans waited outside the venue. The queue was so long it stretched past the corners of Brixton Academy , in which arriving fans would then have to travel all the way around the building just to reach the end of the queue. The weather was undoubtedly chilly , as expected of the weather in London in wintry December, however rumor has it fans with standing tickets lined up from the early hours of 6am (even though doors set to open at 5:30pm) just to get a good spot at the front thus proving the dedication and commitment they had to reassuring they would be able to have a good view of the stage. There was a buzz in the air, and Kpop fans in their masses were lining up , talking to other other fans in the queue about their favorite cube entertainment idols and favorite songs. Many fans had United cube related merch from light sticks, fan signs for their favoured members to t-shirts , tops which they customized themselves and which they had prepared days prior the concert.
As the door started to open, fans slowly started to fill up seats and the pit area .The atmosphere was energetic and lively as the Official music videos from Cube artists were being played, sparking excitement from the crowd and building suspense as the fans waited their appearance on the stage.
Whilst the fans watched the screen downstairs, Kpopconcerts was invited for a press conference with Cube Entertainment artists. As a Kpop concert editor I was ready for a 3 minute photo opportunity.
Beast , 4minute and G.NA entered the room, all immaculately dressed in their black or white stage outfits.
Founder of the Cube entertainment label Hong Seung Sung was also present to give a few encouraging words.
They expressed gratitude and happiness to being able to perform in the United kingdom .
G.NA , a Korean Canadian singer also explained that by them coming to the UK , it will not only be a step for Cube entertainment but also encourage other Kpop artists to perform here also to allow Korean Pop music to become even more popular in the international music industry.
As they finished the interview, they left the room to prepare themselves to perform.
As the lights started to dim, the thousands of kpop fans cheered on their idols as they charismatically entered the stage.
4minute popped out with their debut track ‘Hot issue’ which proved a crowd favourite.They then performed ‘I My Me Mine’ from their single album then ‘Heart to heart’ which is one of their newest tracks. They performed very well and their vocals were on point. Fans of 4 minute ( Known by their fandom as 4nias) sang along to the words thus proving that their songs are undeniably catchy and popular no matter what language they are spoken in.
There was then a break in which they introduced themselves in English. Their English skills were fairly impressive and very cute. They questioned fans on where abouts they had came from in which fans responded from places all over the world such as China , France , Spain and much more, showing the immense popularity of Kpop music all around the world.
They also performed their most famous tracks ‘Huh’ , ‘Mirror Mirror’ and ‘Muzik’, which sparked the audience into a frenzy as the audience seemed to know all of the lyrics by heart again.
4minute also wowed the fans with special stages from Gayoon (The lead vocalist) and Jiyoon ( Vocalist / Rapper) by singing ‘ Blow ‘ by Kesha. Their ability to sing a western song so well and to deliver it with excellent stage performance and sexuality , proves that 4minute are not only beautiful but also talented singers and entertainers.
4minute also performed her hit solo track ‘Bubblepop’ , a fun cute song which Hyuna sang playfully leaving the audience in awe of her cuteness.
G.NA, Korean Canadian born singer was next to hit the stage. Her graceful beauty along side her sequin black number left the fans ( Known as the fandom G.nis) in amazement. She perfomed ‘ Black and White’ , a crowd favourite which was then later accompanied by ‘Ill Back Off So You Can Live’ which is her most famous song, which won her , her first award on M!Countdown in 2010. Her vocals were astonishing and even more so when she sang a cover of Rihanna’s ‘ Take a Bow’ with perfect pronunciation. Which led her to perform ‘Supa Solo’ and her two most recent songs ‘Banana’ and ‘Top girl’ which has become immensely popular since it was released .
The final act was next to hit on the stage showing the more manly side of cue entertainment. Idol group Beast , a 6 member boy band powerfully emerged onto the scene. The audience , which was predominantly a female crowd began to go fanatical. They performed a variety of tracks which included ‘Shock’ , ‘Breathe’ , ‘Oasis’ and ‘Special’, all songs from their previous albums.
It was now what a lot of fans had been anticipating and hoped would be performed. Beast member Hyunseung (JS) and 4 minute member Hyunah then performed their latest track ‘Trouble Maker’ which heated up the audience with their undeniable chemistry and sultry dance moves. Unlike their scandalous ‘deep kiss’ at the MAMA awards in Singapore, they left Cube fans guessing whether it would occur again, however they just performed the song , minus the kiss , leaving fans wanting more.
UK Beast fans (Known as B2uties) became estatic when they perfomed songs off their newest albums such ‘You’ , ‘Lightless’ , ‘On rainy days’ ,’Freeze’, ‘Beautiful’ , ‘I like you the best’ and their most newest and most popular track for 2011 ‘Fiction’
Their choreography and vocals were flawless and most of all they looked like they were having tons of fun. They danced and joked about whilst on the stage, holding banners , taking pictures with cameras given by the first row of the fans.
They also played a video clip , showing their debut slowly showing their difficult yet beautiful journey they had embarked on as artists. This left many fans in tears as these fans have been through and watched over them through all their pain and struggle. It was powerful and left many hearts in the audience in an emotional state as they have always supported Beast through these times.
They then ended their performance with ‘V.I.U’ which stands for ‘Very Important You’ , which was a very good song to finish as it is quite upbeat.
As beast disappeared from the stage, the audience screamed for an encore in which Cube Entertainment did not disappoint. All 3 artists came back on stage and did one last performance as a company. They sang ‘ Fly so High’ and danced and held hands on stage, proving they are more than just employees at a company , but a family. Confetti filled the room and showered the fans. The atmosphere was happy yet sad as the concert seemed to be coming to an end.
The concert was complete hit! Fans were left in tears after the concert had ended. For many , this means a lot to them , having to see their idols finally perform after supporting them for so long from afar. Their electric performances , clean choreography and powerful vocals can only show how cube entertainment acts truly shine from other kpop artists. Being the First Official Kpop concert in the UK will hopefully mean more Kpop in the UK. For some fans this is the first Kpop concert they have been able to go to go and have expressed immense gratitude towards this amazing opportunity. Fans are also hoping that Cube’s presence in the UK will help to increase Kpop’s popularity in the Western World and show that the United Kingdom will become a key location for more Kpop artists to perform. We hope that Beast had a pleasant time in London and we wish to see them back again for another concert!
All photography taken by Su Mi .