Su-Metal on Big Issue North: "The Japanese language is very important to us"

BABYMETAL was featured in the new issue of Big Issue North from United Kingdom with an article from the Download Festival in Donington Park. Su-Metal was interviewed at the backstage, she talked about the experience at Download 2016, Rob Zombie's support, the upcoming performance with Rob Halford, THE ONE, and singing in Japanese. Very interesting article and interview transcripted below. 


Su-Metal about Download 2016, Rob Zombie & Rob Halford, singing in Japanese


"Despite the extreme pouring rain, people stood before our stage to watch us to the very end. It was a spectacular view from the stage" says Su-Metal the band's 18-year-old singer. The rain may have been pouring but that didn't stop the fonzied crowd froming circle pits at her request. "Our live performance is very intense so the rain actually helped us to cool down a bit."


I first caught BABYMETAL live last year's Leeds Festival but the girls have played most rock festivals now, steadily climbing their way up to the bill in a few short years. "Download UK was amazing but really very festival brings a different experience so it's hard to choose one over the other", she says. 


"The crowd is probably the most different. Over here everyone is just enjoying the show in their own way. In the beginning we always see people in the crowd who have never seen us before, who don't know how to react, but by the end of our set we always see everyone holding up the FOX Sign (BABYMETAL's version of metal horns), which shows us that they are enjoying our show."



"We've been so blessed to have experience so many things here in the UK. As for the full tour, only the FOX GOD knows!" she says, citing the name of their current tour and the mythology that underpins BABYMETAL's very existence. 



The FOX GOD is said to have recruited the girls as heroines of a metal revolution. Their show is often introduced wit ha video explaining their mission. 


With a devout fanbase, they've succeeded. But neverthless there are some (grumpy old elitists) who deny the ways of the FOX GOD and BABYMETAL's inclusion in the world of metal. Last month White Zombie frontman horror movie director Rob Zombie caused a stir when he fired back at his own fans who posted negative comments on Facebook after he had his picture taken with BABYMETAL.


Su-Metal says: "First of all, thanks to Rob for being so kind to us. We really feel happy for his support. There may be people who don't like what we o, but that is all fine for us because we just want to continue doing what we believe is the right thing." 


Zombie also told fans that the girls had 90 per cent more energy than most of the bands he's played with. Where does it come from? "All the yummy food in the countries we visit and from all our fans and people who come to our shows. We just want to have fun with all who show up at our shows."


Another fan is Judas Priest frontman Rob Halford, with whom they have an upcoming performance. One of the reasons they seem so accepted in the genre dominated by gruff hairy men is the respect they pay their elders. 


"We are extremely honoured for this amazing opportunity, I must say I'm nervous but I'm even more excited. Every band is cool and we are happy to be able to share a stage with so many legends."  If they could collaborate with just one of those legends living of dead? "We respect so many of them, how can we choose just one?"


The devloping maturity of the band - fellow members Moametal and Yuimetal are now 16 and 17 - shows their new album. The music is less of a distinct layering of J-pop and metal and more a cohesive blend of the two. Plus the riffs have got even heavier. 


"We build our songs together with our fans through our live performances. Everything that we learn and absorb through our world tours is reflected onto our songs, for sure."


With western success comes a dilemma for some. Many foreign bands end up singing in English to reach a wider audience, but others like German band Rammstein, Download headliners on the Friday night, stick to their native tongue and still achieve great success. It seems BABYMETAL have no plans to change. 


"We made an English version of THE ONE, because that song is about getting everyone to come together through our music and we thought that English would be the best to reach out to all our fans all over the world. We have no idea if we will make more English songs in the future but we take pride in the fact that we are from Japan and the Japanese language is very important to us." 


Success doesn't seem to be going to their heads either. "There are so many musicians out there who are amazing in what they do so it's not only us," says Su-Metal with characteristic diplomacy. "All we do is believe in our work and our music, and strive to bring the best music and the best performance to everyone." 





Article and Interview by: Big Issue North

Information on Big Issue North vendors, click here.

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