Babymetal

Genres and labels in art are meant to be bent, broken, and fused. Otherwise, nothing new would be created. Sometimes, the fusion is of two forms that seem totally at odds, and the result is unexpectedly amazing.

In this vein, from Japan comes Babymetal, a fusion of Japanese idol music with heavy metal  The group is fronted by Suzuka Nakamoto (Su-metal), Yui Mizuno (Yuimetal), and Moa Kikuchi (Moametal); three teens who are part of the Japanese Idol industry.

In Japanese pop culture, an idol (アイドル aidoru?, a Japanese rendering of the English word “idol”) is a young manufactured star/starlet who is promoted as being particularly cute. Idols are intended to be role models everyone adores. They must have a perfect public image and be good examples to young people. Idols aim to play a wide range of roles as media personalities (tarento), e.g. pop singers, panelists of variety programs, bit-part actors, models for magazines and advertisements.
Most idol singers work across genres of Japanese pop music, usually in the genre that is most popular at the moment, but since idols usually sing cute sentimental songs, one can say that idols themselves form a sort of music genre of their own.

The extremely talented musicians who provide the driving metal and backup vocals to the group remain in the background but certainly deserve wider recognition. There ability to segue between Idol and metal is nothing short of amazing.

The perfect introduction to Babymetal is Head Bangya!! in which a magical neck brace turns an ordinary teenager into a serious headbanger.

The best track on their self-titled album is the anthem for the body image obsessed: Give Me Chocolate!! The English translations for many of their songs are available on their website.

The concept is totally insane, but the product is truly incredible.

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