First Impressions: Naniwa Danshi – NANDE?! [なにわ男子 Debut Tour 2022 1st Love]

20:00 7th April 2023 — Naniwa Danshi has just uploaded their live performance of their song NANDE?! from their 2022 debut tour [1st Love].


As a Naniwa Danshi fan, I’m embarrassed to admit that I have yet to find time to sit down and fully listen to their ANSWER album. However, since this video has been uploaded, I can only think of my delayed response as a blessing because being able to experience this song through this visual performance has been nothing short of absolutely amazing.

First off, can we talk about the outfits? Blame me for being slow and perhaps these men have already performed in these ensembles before, but let’s talk about the design for a moment.


I’m loving the fact that they’re wearing these suits that offer just the right amount of shimmer. Johnnys are famously known for their flamboyant suits but it’s refreshing to see such a simple yet interesting design that’s both reflective yet matte. The dripping paint design’s a nice and subtle way to keep the suit from being ‘boring’. And while it’s difficult for me to distinguish whether or not the base colour of their suits is white or cream (Because let’s face it, who can really tell with those blue and purple spotlights?), it’s nice to see that they’re sort of staying true to their original pink colour in a much more mature way.

Naniwa Danshi - NANDE live performance - costume - Suit - Outfit red and white

Next, the dance. My knowledge on this physical art is way too limited for me to actually name specific dance moves. But I’m 90% sure that that rolling of the wrists and locking of the knees is a signature move when it comes to Japanese hip hop. Now, whether or not Johnnys Entertainment were the original creators of that move or whether they were responsible for popularising it is completely unknown to me, but we do know that it’s one of the classic dance moves that Johnnys and Associates artists are known for. And it definitely made me smile to see them squeeze so many of those, along with some other classic Johnnys moves, into the beginning of that performance.


Lastly, we need to talk about the song — obviously.

Since this was my first time hearing NANDE?!, I’m going to be honest and say that the initial section of the song didn’t really stand out to me. But the trumpets that play as the members point in unison definitely gave me old-school Japanese pop song vibes. We’re talking about music from the 80s and the 90s, similar to something that you’d hear while watching the Detective Conan anime.

The chorus was what really drew me in, and then the lyrics definitely hit me when Ohashi had his solo and sang:

何千年 何百年 恋してたいのに // キミのため 生まれて来たはずなのに

Thousands of years, hundreds of years, I want to fall in love with you // I was most definitely born to be with you

Ohashi Kazuya Live Performance - First Love - NANDE - Concert DVD - Live Performance

Excuse me?! Imagine having someone say that to you! Have more romantic proclamations ever been made?

I actually had to pause the video and have a moment of silence to just make sure that I’d actually heard the lyrics correctly because the words that were coming out of his mouth were honestly too lovely.


To end this post, I’d just like to voice out that Onishi Ryusei really shone throughout this performance. Unfortunately, Ryusei (or Ryuche 😁) isn’t my favourite Naniwa Danshi member. However, his solos, facial expressions and overall delivery of each move was impossible not to admire and marvel at. He definitely caught my eye and just held onto it for the entire performance.

Onishi Ryusei Nande  Naniwa Danshi Concert DVD live performance First Love Tour Debut Tour 2022

[Also, the ending was the final finishing touch. All of them just dropping down into the hole in the centre of the stage? Classic Johnny’s exit.]

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