Young Guitar: BABYMETAL talk “Metal Resistance” & importance of Kami Band
A new segment of the extensive interview of Young Guitar with BABYMETAL. In this part the girls talk in depth about the new album "Metal Resistance" released worldwide on April 1 but also they highlight the importance of Kami Band. Read the full segment translated below.
BABYMETAL about "Amore", "Sis.Anger", "No Rain, No Rainbow" on Young Guitar
Young Guitar: Regarding your new album "Metal Resistance". First of all, what was your impression when you listened through all the tracks?
Su-Metal: "First of all, I was glad we could release an album after two years, and also this time the difference among the tracks is great... there's lyrics we couldn't sing until now, messages and sounds we can transmit now. I thought this album is packed with both BABYMETAL's present and future."
Yuimetal: "This time we challenged several genres, and also we had an English song for the first time. I think this is an extensive album, that could resonate with a wide range of people, from little kids to elderly adults. We could also grow up in some aspects during these two years, and this makes me think, I'd like to do my best to express this during the live performances."
Moametal: "I look forward myself to the album's release... and at the same time I think, it's nice that we made it in time for the release date (laugh). When I listened to the album I thought once again - well actually also while I sang it... I thought simply 'how fun... how interesting...'. Song after song we challenged ourselves in our own kind of metal, and doing this we could make several discoveries. I would like everyone to enjoy our growth and our challenges, such things as 'I really like SU-METAL's singing voice', or 'YUIMETAL sang in such way'."
Young Guitar: Again in this album, heavy guitar sounds and fast guitar solos are a crucial factor, what kind of effect this part had on your ears?
Su-Metal: "Since the start of BABYMETAL, and especially when we started to perform live together with the Kami Band, I can really feel the guitar sound coming from the in-ear monitors reverberates through me as 'an encouraging music'. When I sing my part, there's a lot of occasions when I rely on the guitar sound to sing the melody, and the live sound I can hear in that moment is really a reassuring presence I can rely on. Before the world tour, I had a strong feeling that we were alone, that we had to create the show alone and just the three of us had to fascinate the audience, but after the Kami Band joined us, they support us with their sound. This backing always turns into a great power. Even in this sense, with the guitar sound the power of the music is really great. I could realize this personally, especially at the live shows."
Young Guitar: And that gives birth to that impressive performance. MOAMETAL san, what do you think about it?
Moametal: "Starting such kind of guitar sound, I feel that we wouldn't have been able to be where we are now without the sound of the Kami Band. Obviously, we were also supported by the members of the staff and all our fans. We are a new genre which is a fusion of metal and kawaii, so if I had to say, I'd say the singing contains the kawaii elements, but on the musical side we need to properly express the metal component. Especially things like guitars... the fact that they can move their hands that fast is simply amazing. When I listen to the songs I think, that's totally fast, actually even watching at the rehearsals they move so fast that I think their hands could come off."
Young Guitar: Exactly (laugh). And also, you guys can witness this from a closer distance than anyone else.
Moametal: "They really support [i.e. help, save] us, isn't that amazing?"
Su-Metal: "Yeah, that's amazing. I don't even know whether they're moving or not (laugh)"
Young Guitar: (Laughs!) it's so fast that it looks like they don't move (laugh)
Moametal: "In particular, I think people will be surprised by songs like SU-METAL's solo 'Amore - Aoboshi'. I can enjoy it even just by watching their hands playing guitar (laughs)"
Su-Metal: (laughing) "It's really cool."
Yuimetal: "Yes. I wish you will look forward to the live show as well."
Young Guitar: The melodic speed metal of 'Amore - Aoboshi' is truly packed with high speed phrases straight from the beginning.
Yuimetal: "I've got the same feeling as the other two, as well... when we are at the side of the stage, hearing the sound of the band from the in-ear monitors, and seeing the reaction of the audience, we feel that we really need to do our best as well, it's a great support for us. And also, YUIMETAL and MOAMETAL express BABYMETAL's music with their dance and ainote [* interjections during the song], when we can link our dancing in a neat way to the sound from the live band that comes from our in-ear monitors, that's really a good feeling. In particular in 'Road of Resistance' we can experience this sensation... the guitar sound during that moment is the best... well, I also like bass, and the sound of drums as well... (laughs)"
Young Guitar: Exactly because it's a song that sprints at full speed with a fast tempo, the moment when you synchronize the sound and dance, you can feel that emotion even more. Well, let me ask about the other songs. When you released your previous work, SU-METAL san often listened to - and sang - for example, Gabrielle Aplin's songs, and you said 'The lyrics are in English, so right now they are a bit vague, but one day I'd like to be able to sing properly in English'. In the 'overseas' edition of your new album you recorded an English version of 'The One', a song that unfolds in a beautiful and majestic way.
Su-Metal: "Yes. While we were on tour, we were asked by people from foreign media things like 'don't you sing in English?'. I heard that everyone was waiting for that, and I also thought myself I wanted to be able to better transmit my thoughts, so I am really happy that this time we could record (in the foreign version) a song with full English lyrics. During the live shows, even when the lyrics are in Japanese people study the language and they kindly sing with us, but I think that it would be smoother if it was in English, therefore I'm glad we did a song everyone in the world can sing. Well, actually when I had to record the song in English, at first there was a lot of pressure. The English of everyday conversation is totally different from singing in English. During the recording I was told things such as 'I can't hear this sound well' or 'try and produce the R sound a bit', and I said things like 'what's the 'R' sound!?'. Starting from these points, I was instructed about pronunciation in a rather strict way. Thanks to that, I think I did the best up to now, and from now on I want to increase my pronunciation skills. But most of all, I'm so happy that I could finish a song entirely in English."
Young Guitar: It's not just paying attention to the pronunciation, I guess it was also difficult to put your emotions into it, right?
Su-Metal: "That's right. Up to now I had listened to songs in English, but when it came to singing them myself, I didn't know where to put my emotions, and if I pronounced the lyrics like Japanese, it would have ended up like Japanese-English. And this situation didn't turn out well, so the recording was a rather tough game for me."
Young Guitar: I see. However, since before this recording, we could see you talked actively in English, at interviews in foreign media.
Su-Metal: "Yes. But I couldn't talk directly to the interviewers, and I could always feel a sense of frustration for not being able to immediately convey my own thoughts. During the tour I came to think, our fans study Japanese for us, and yet we don't try to communicate in English, what should we do...
Therefore from now on I look forward to learning English."
Young Guitar: I look forward to the future. Then... YUIMETAL san and MOAMETAL san perform the vocal part of 'Sis. Anger', which is a fierce tune like you didn't have up to now. (note in the original text: it's a fierce melodic black/death metal that reminds of 'The Black Dahlia Murder').
Moametal: "That's right" (laughs)
Yuimetal: "I was startled!" (laughs)
Young Guitar: Exactly. (laugh) What's more, the lyrics are extreme as well, as if threatening the listener.
Yuimetal: "When I first saw the lyrics, well it's all expressions I don't normally use myself, so I was a bit astonished, but this song... well I think I couldn't have done it without BABYMETAL, and also by performing it on stage I have a feeling that I could meet again a new self. Sound-wise, by challenging black metal the lyrics reflect this violent side, but I feel there's a core and a message in it. When I sang it I could feel a tension down my spine and so I would be glad if this song could give even a bit of motivation to the listeners."
Moametal: "Exactly. I was surprised as well when they handed me the lyrics, but at the same time I ended up laughing. As YUIMETAL just said, in those lyrics there's a language I don't normally use, so I was a bit surprised, but exactly because we are BLACK BABYMETAL, I'm happy we could complete it. 'BLACK' BABYMETAL showing a 'black' factor in the words, and challenging 'black' metal... in other words it's like three-tier black."
Young Guitar: That's good!
Moametal: (laughs) "I think it was really interesting, and it would be nice if this could be transmitted to the listeners as well. Just, I tried not to put excessive emotions in this song, I sang it in a kind of indifferent way, now in this album there's a lot of songs with a strong message, and among them 'Sis. Anger' is a particularly strong song, therefore I recorded it while thinking 'I wish this message could be transmitted, even a little'."
Young Guitar: Yeah, that's a song with a strong message... and yet I really wish you two didn't use that kind of language in your everyday life... (laughs)
MoaYui: "You don't need to worry about that." (laugh)
Young Guitar: And then, what about the song that was performed two years ago at the Budoukan, 'No Rain no Rainbow'? Its sound changed after a long period of maturation, and being a ballad it's again a different challenge than the rest of the songs.
Su-Metal: "Yes, that's right. It's the first ballad so when it comes to the feelings in the lyrics, I thought I really had to express them all one by one. At first I thought it was difficult, but thanks to all the different experiences up to now, I think it was the time for it to take shape. In this song I think especially the guitar solo is beautiful, I genuinely love it."
Young Guitar: It's a long solo with a beautiful harmony with twin leads.
Su-Metal: "Yes. I thought, in the songs up to now the sound of guitar had a sort of 'gagaga!' kind of expression but in this song I feel the melody of the guitar is really singable... therefore I try to draw a beautiful way of singing from that form. The lyrics I sing are sad, so I tried to challenge myself and express their beauty."
Young Guitar: So rather than the fact that it's a ballad, we can say you took inspiration from that guitar sound.
Su-Metal: "Yes, at first I felt it would be hard because it's a ballad, but then I thought 'I'd like to sing in a beautiful way like that guitar melody' and that gave me a direction, and my worries went away."
Translation by: Gakushabaka
Scans of BABYMETAL special feature on Young Guitar, click here.
Read: BABYMETAL learning from Metal Music & Overview of activities, click here.