With their Every Day6 project seeing success every single month this year, it’s really no surprise that DAY6’s first North American tour followed suit. Before wrapping up their five-show stint on Sunday with their last stop in bassist Young K’s old stomping grounds of Toronto, the tour—hosted by SubKulture Entertainment—made stops in four U.S. cities including guitarist Jae’s hometown of Los Angeles, along with Austin, New York, and finally Detroit. The Kraze had the pleasure of attending the final U.S. show with #Day6inDET.
Before the show even started, it was evident it was going to be a good one. Taking place in Detroit’s Music Hall—a vintage theater complete with its own jazz café downstairs (how cool!)—the place was legitimately packed wall-to-wall. The band’s fans, referred to as My Day, fervently chanted the members’ names leading up to the performance (even making sure to call for Brian, Young K’s English name that has become a running joke that both the fandom and band members won’t let go). With the opening notes of “아 왜 (I Wait)”, the screams only increased as the band finally took to the stage with an energy rivaled only by the crowd in front of them. The hype only increased with the next song, “Hunt,” a driving track from the band’s second mini-album, but the deafening screams reached an all-time high when the band formally introduced themselves. If the cozy venue itself didn’t already feel intimate enough, the tone for the evening was set when Jae jokingly asked if everyone had good seats. And the answer was an obvious yes: when seeing an act such as DAY6, there really is no such thing as a bad seat.
The set continued with the Every Day6 tracks "I'm Serious (장난 아닌데)" from April and “Man in a Movie” from May before breaking into the fanmeet portion of the show. After individual member introductions, a board covered in fan-submitted questions was wheeled onto the stage. One by one, each member chose his own question to answer, but not without leader Sungjin dramatically leading the crowd in the Jeopardy theme song between each member’s answer (particularly during drummer Dowoon’s bout of indecisiveness during his turn).
Jae was first up, and the question he chose asked about the difficulties in leaving his home in L.A. to pursue a music career in Korea. After talking about his humble beginnings on YouTube and SBS K-Pop Star, the guitarist wisely spoke of the risks involved in pursuing music and stated that while not everything is guaranteed, his decision was worth it. Ironically enough, his simultaneous biggest regret and piece of advice was “don’t ditch music class.”
Personally, one of the highlights of the entire performance was the non-fluent members’ attempts at English. Sungjin’s English was particularly impressive, as he answered a question about where he’d like to travel with the band (spoiler alert: the list included Detroit and Canada, so looks like he can cross those off his list).
Dowoon settled on a question asking what traits he gained from his parents, to which he endearingly admitted he inherited his shyness from his mom and his face from his dad. When asked who he thought was the better-looking of the two between himself and his dad, he wisely answered “of course my father.”
Young K’s question revolved around the struggles of being bilingual. He admitted to having trouble with English when he first moved to Toronto during his high school years, but said that by the fourth year, he’d picked up the language quite well, though he felt it was all moot when he moved back to Korea the very next year. Nowadays, the bilingual struggle is still real for the bassist, if a little different: “Now I have a hard time thinking in Korean and in English…. [It’s like] you’re trying to speak in English but then the Korean thought comes up.” When asked if he thinks more in one language or the other, he humorously answered, “I think in Konglish [a mash-up of the two].”
Keyboardist Wonpil was the last to pick a question, and he chose one that asked what he thought was the most rewarding experience of the Every Day6 project. The pride in his tone was overflowing as he spoke of the goals the band has achieved with the project. He confessed that not only is he extremely satisfied with all of the music the group has put out so far this year, but he’s also excited for the remaining tracks. Be sure keep an eye out for the next installment which will be released on November 6. Check out the teaser on their Twitter!
After the Q&A portion, things transitioned into a game segment where members picked numbers between one and nine on a board in an effort to win a game of Tic-Tac-Toe. On each number was a challenge that the member would have to complete in order to clear the spot (with the goal being to clear three spots in a line). To no one’s surprise, this part of the show ended up being one of the highlights of the night as it allowed not only each member's personality to shine through, but also the group’s chemistry as a whole.
Wonpil was unanimously volunteered by the rest of the band to go first (an action he took with good grace), and his challenge ended up being that he had to eat a lemon and attempt to whistle within a short time frame. Though he looked far from happy as he ate the lemon, he eventually managed to whistle and passed the challenge.
Young K chose a number that required the band to play the “Same Action Game” where they were shown a keyword and had to simultaneously strike the same pose to represent it. The phrase ended up being “Michael Jackson,” and while four out of the five members managed to hit the same pose, Young K himself ironically enough ended up doing something different and failing the challenge for the group.
Poor, poor Dowoon was up next, and his challenge was to blindly stick his hands inside a “Mystery Box” and guess what was inside—in this instance, a toy alligator. While the audience and band members knew the reptile was fake, the drummer had nothing to go by except the feeling of rough scales against his hands and the repeated warnings from the MC that the object had sharp teeth and may bite. After being granted three tries by the MC, Dowoon eventually settled on an answer of “lizard” before backtracking to “turtle” and failing the challenge.
Sungjin came to save the day when he took his turn next and was tasked with performing a dance cover to a surprise song. The crowd waited with bated breath before Sunmi’s “Gashina” came blaring through the speakers. And let me tell you, I have not seen anyone move their hips like that since Sunmi promoted the song herself earlier this year. If anyone in the crowd wasn’t a Sungjin stan before, they certainly were in that moment. Needless to say, he passed.
Jae closed out the bingo portion with his challenge of having to improvise a song about a topic of the audience’s choosing. After a fan in the crowd suggested “Detroit” as the topic, the MC offered Jae 15 seconds to think, to which he promptly replied, “No, I’m good,” and began belting Kiss’s “Detroit Rock City.” With Jae’s signature crooning vocals, he passed with no problem and successfully earned the band a Tic-Tac-Toe.
After wrapping up the game and holding a raffle for five lucky fans, the crowd was greeted with the greatest surprise of the night: a VCR of the band in their Detroit hotel rooms made just the night before. The video featured Sungjin going from room to room to spy on the members, and perhaps most notably singing “Do You Want to Build a Snowman?” from Frozen when knocking on Young K’s door (who of course followed suit and told him to “go away”).
“DAY6 is a Band, Band is Music.”
With the conclusion of the VCR and the above wise words from Sungjin, it was time to jump back into what DAY6 does best: music. The band opened the second half with what ended up being my favorite song of the night, “You Were Beautiful (예뻤어)," and it was thanks almost entirely to Wonpil. In a stark contrast to his shy personality during the Q&A portion, Wonpil’s powerful, stable vocals in particular soared above the music and blew me away. The moment he came in with the chorus left me in goosebumps for the rest of the song, and while I was beyond impressed with everything this concert had to offer, his performance in “예뻤어” was by far what struck me the most.
It wouldn’t be a DAY6 concert without “Congratulations,” which came next and, of course, the entire audience sang along. According to Jae during his ending ment, the audience “had that ‘Congratulations’ on lock,” so it’s good to know the fans didn’t disappoint. After the rest of the members made their parting comments thanking fans for their support (and Dowoon reminiscing about his first time touching an alligator), the group played "Letting Go" and "I Smile," a nice back-to-back contrast between one of their earlier releases and one of their more recent ones. With that, the band exited the stage to mad chants of “DAY6” and not long after, they came back out for an incredible encore of “DANCE DANCE” that had the entire audience on their feet. The last song of the night was “Freely” off the band’s first mini-album, and it was a perfect way to end the show, with Jae even venturing out into the audience to hype everyone up one last time before the band said their final goodbye.
Logistically speaking, this concert was organized quite well. From what I saw, the P1 fansign and P2 hi-touch seemed to go off without a hitch. Kudos to SubK for running a great show for DAY6 and hopefully paving the way for many more in the future!
Going into this concert, I was a fan, but I was certainly a more casual one. I’ve listened to DAY6 since fall of 2016 and have always enjoyed their music, but after seeing them live, my entire view has changed. DAY6’s raw talent and passion for performing is undeniable, as is their generosity and humbleness towards their fans. It’s honestly hard not to fall for this group. As everyone left the venue, “My Day” played over the speakers, and I couldn’t think of a more appropriate exit song because as I left; I realized I now count myself as one of many other My Days that can’t wait for the band to return to North America.