OK, right off the bat, it is not cool to fap to Babymetal videos. Seriously, dudes, two of the members are only 17, so rubbing one out while watching “Gimme Chocolate” is pretty creepy. Where does one even begin to discuss the latest thing blowing up the interweb heavy metal-wise, Japan’s newest mega-musical-export, Babymetal?
For starters, it’s well known that this group was assembled and specifically designed to meld heavy metal with Japanese J-Pop. Well, they pulled that off to the tune of hundreds of tickets and a ridiculous amount of albums sold. Sure, they are pretty much an Asian version of Josie & The Pussycats on steroids, but I have to admit it, they are damned entertaining live and in their videos.
Also, considering in the last year they have shared the stage with Rob Halford, Red Hot Chili Peppers, Guns N’ Roses and freaking Metallica, that there is some serious peer validation for these kids. Their stage show is simply spectacular. Babymetal look like they would fit in perfectly in a Final Fantasy video game. At times, it is so over the top that they seem surreal without actually being cartoonish. Major props have to go out to the backing Kami band. Though always hidden behind masks, these guys are absolutely killer. It’s like when you realize GWAR and Dethklok are actually amazing musicians. The songs walk that fine line between catchy pop and well-executed metal. Not an easy task. Which, of course, is what draws the line so decisively between those that love this band and those loathe them.
I will admit that I initially was feeling that Babymetal were a joke. The female version of Steel Panther, as it were. Maybe interesting for a curious listen, but easy to dismiss them as Japanese schoolgirl version of Menudo. But, I will admit, if I ever have the chance to see them live, I’m gonna.