Hololive Dreamhack
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The Hololive x DreamHack Concert Showcased Vtubers’ Variety

I confess that I’ve never really bought in to the whole “Vtubers as idols” thing. I’ve always thought of them as streamers first and musicians or performers second, despite liking a good amount of the music they’ve produced. But after sitting down to watch the Hololive x DreamHack: Down Under concert, I’m starting to see the appeal, especially after only six Vtubers covered so many styles and songs.

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Taking place on the April 27, 2024 during DreamHack Melbourne 2024, the concert was a return to old stomping grounds for Hololive EN’s Hakos Baelz. Performing alongside her was fellow EN member Calliope Mori, with Pavolia Reine and Kureiji Ollie from the Indonesian branch and Houshou Marine and Tokoyami Towa representing the Japanese side. The concert was a much smaller and more manageable affair than the multi-day behemoth that was the Hololive 5th Fes back in March 2024, but there was still a good spread of powerful singers and natural entertainers. Plus, it’s always nice to see representation from all the branches together.

Even before the show itself started, the crowd led a touching moment. As the camera lingered on an audience member’s plushie of Hololive alumnus and fellow Aussie Tsukumo Sana, a chant went up for the streamer who is clearly sorely missed almost two years after her graduation. It’s always fun to see members of the audience displaying their merchandise or handmade signs, and like in their streams the talents had a few moments of interaction. For example, during an intermission, Mori Calliope disproved the idea of the show being recorded by calling out another audience member who had mimed a kiss between a plushie of her and gen-mate Takanashi Kiara.

When the concert truly began, it was with Towa, Calli, and Bae singing “Journey Like A Thousand Years,” which was the first original group song produced for Hololive English Myth. It was a rousing introduction to be sure, and yet the follow-up would only intensify the atmosphere as Kureiji Ollie brought her signature frenetic energy to the stage. Performing her original song “Jollie Jollie,” she somehow managed to to match the stage presence of the previous three all by herself.

The first segment of the show, which is available to watch for free on Youtube, was rounded out with Hololive mainstay Houshou Marine and her song “Bishoujo Muzai Pirates.” Marine’s music runs the gamut from hypnotic rhythms to piratical anthems and raunchy swing tunes, so this medley of different styles allowed her to show off her range. But one thing I really appreciated was seeing parts of the music video shown on the stage backing. It’s a nice simple way to fill some space, sure, but a lot of Marine’s MV’s in particular have some charming visuals and it’s nice to seem them shown off again.

About a third of the way through the Hololive x DreamHack concert, an intermission MC’ed by Calli and Bae saw the return of the notorious “EN Curse,” as some technical troubles ensued with one of their mics. Swiftly sorted out, the moment and the intermission as a whole served as a palette cleanser before the next part of the show. Kicked off, fittingly, by Towa performing “Palette.” A significant shift in tone, this act was a more crooning and mellow affair with the audience’s attention held not by active choreography but simply Towa’s powerful voice. Afterwards, she was joined on stage by Pavolia Reine for a duet cover of Moona Hoshinova’s “High Tide,” prompting a big cheer from the crowd.

Moona is known as a bit of a songstress herself, but if there were any members to keep up with her it was these two. I don’t think I’d heard the two Hololive talents sing together before so I was surprised by how their voices worked so well at DreamHack, with Towa’s deeper voice providing a nice contrast to Reine’s as they each switched who took the lead on vocals.

The next set was an EN branch double bill with Calliope’s “Wanted, Wasted” and Bae’s “Mess,” and while both were very well performed I was drawn again to the choreography and specifically, how it was affected by model and design of the Vtuber in question. I couldn’t help but feel like Mori’s model, with the long hair, skirt and veil, felt a bit stiff compared to her more active movements. Meanwhile, Baelz’ design (which I admit took a while to grow on me after I first saw it) felt much better suited to the stage as her baggy sleeves and ribbons accentuated her movements like a cheerleader’s pom-poms.

The next few songs wound down the tone with Reine’s “Illusion Night,” followed by Calli performing her One Piece-themed song “Future Island” alongside Marine. Bae and Ollie followed up with a cover of “Q.” It was a particular treat to see how the difference in singers affect those last two, like how Bae and Ollie’s twinned energy and attitude gelled excellently with the tone of the song.

The final two songs were both total crowdpleasers. One was “Blue Clapper” with Marine, Ollie, and Reine, with an ensemble finale of “Shiny Smiley Story”, complete with a wardrobe change into their proper ‘Idol’ outfits. As something of a Hololive theme song, “SSS” is at this point slick and well practiced for a lot of the talents but it remains novel since who exactly performs it and how many there are changes with each show. It’s always entertaining trying to pick out different voices in the harmonies and hear how the song is split up between each of them.

It’s hard not to marvel at not just the multitude of different singers Hololive has gathered together over the years, but also at the range of styles they can perform. Even with only 6 performers, the Hololive x DreamHack concert covered a multitude of genres, from powerful ballads and frenetic rap to Idol anthems. I’ve said before I’m not much for idols, but I’m still looking forward to seeing what future concerts and other talents can bring to the table.

VOD’s for the Hololive x DreamHack Melbourne concert will be available to view on SPWN until May 27, 2024.

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Elliot Gostick
Elliot is a staff writer from the mist-shrouded isle of Albion, and has been covering gaming news and reviews for about a year. When not playing RPGs and Strategy games, she is often found trying (and failing) to resist the urge to buy more little plastic spacemen.