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W24's ‘Born Again’ Tour: A Night of Musical Healing and Fan Connection

By Nilza Anibal

Image Credit: Yaiza Nicole

On Saturday, August 19th, music fans in London were treated to a memorable night of music as South Korean idol rock band W24 graced the stage at The Garage as part of their ‘Born Again’ Tour. The trio, consisting of leader and guitarist Kim Yun-soo, drummer Kim Jong-gil and lead singer Cheong Ho-won (as keyboardist Park Aaron is currently doing his mandatory military service), brought their unique blend of rock and pop to an eager audience. With a setlist that showcased their versatility and a genuine connection with their fans, it was a night that left everyone feeling "born again".

The evening began with a heartwarming acknowledgment of their dedicated fanbase. W24 took a moment to remember fans they had met at their first London concert, sharing personal stories like meeting a fan named Charlie. This simple act of recognition instantly endeared them to the audience, setting a warm and inclusive tone for the night.

One fan exclaimed, "We like W24 more than Greggs!" – a humorous testament to the band's popularity in the UK. The playful banter continued when Ho-won mentioned trying the local Subway and sharing their enjoyment, showing that they were not just there to perform but also to immerse themselves in British culture.

The energy from the previous day's concert in Manchester, particularly highlighting Manchester EVERY's (W24’s fandom name) high energy, was also a topic of conversation. The camaraderie among fans and the band was palpable, making the concert feel like a reunion of friends.

Yun-soo, the band's leader, took a moment to wish everyone in the audience a healing and unforgettable time during the concert. It was evident that W24 not only wanted to entertain but also create an emotional connection with their fans, providing a sense of solace and rejuvenation through their music.

One of the standout moments of the night was Jong-gil's Lucozade story. The band, it seems, prefers the original flavours, and this revelation had the crowd chuckling in agreement. It's these little personal touches that make a concert experience truly special.

Image Credit: Yaiza Nicole

The band then delved into their musical repertoire, performing their track "Roar", which gained recognition from MNET’s band survival show 'Great Seoul Invasion'. The audience was electrified by their powerful performance, and it was evident that W24's energy was contagious.

They also treated fans to a cover of Lenny Kravitz's hit, "Are You Gonna Go My Way", infusing their unique style into the song. This homage to a rock legend delighted fans and showcased their musical prowess.

Yun-soo's act of kindness, giving his water bottle away to a fan, set the tone for more heartwarming moments. Ho-won followed suit, distributing water in small cups to grateful fans.

Another touching moment came when Ho-won talked about Aaron, who is currently in the military. Since the follow-up songs were keyboard-based, they performed "Missing You J" as "Missing You A" for Aaron. The emotional dedication resonated deeply with fans and added a layer of poignancy to the concert, as everyone sang the chorus replacing J with A so that it could be recorded for Aaron.

After the encore, fans passionately requested an additional song, and Jong-gil honoured their wishes by choosing "Once Upon a Time". It was a beautiful gesture that allowed the night to extend, leaving fans with cherished memories.

Image Credit: Yaiza Nicole

The band also shared stories from their childhood, offering glimpses into their personal lives which also helped to bring down, albeit momentarily, the invisible wall that separated the members’ ‘idol/artist’ persona from the ‘real human beings’ behind W24, making them even more relatable to the audience. These anecdotes humanised the performers, reinforcing the idea that music is a universal language that transcends borders and cultures.

In a world where music could seldom feel manufactured and distant from its fans, W24's concert was a refreshing departure from the norm, as they usually are, where members’ showmanship and skills converted non-fans into complete stans. They not only showcased their musical talent but also fostered a sense of community and connection. It was a night where fans and the band came together, forging a bond that will surely last long after the final notes of their encore.

W24's ‘Born Again’ Tour in London was a testament to the power of music to heal, connect and inspire. As the crowd left The Garage that night, they did so with their hearts full and their spirits lifted, knowing they had been a part of something truly special. W24 had not just performed; they had created a memorable, immersive experience that left everyone feeling born again.

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