If you hold tickets to concerts in Jakarta that are scheduled to take place this month, you might want to prepare to have your heart broken — even though it’s for the greater good.
Jakarta’s Capital Investment and One Stop Integrated Service Agency (PMPTSP) said it has suspended the issuance of permit for three concerts with international headliners scheduled in March, as a precautionary measure toward the novel coronavirus outbreak after the first two cases on Indonesian soil were confirmed on Monday.
“There are three [concerts] that are included in the temporary list of performances that we have temporarily suspended: Head In The Clouds, Babymetal, and Foals Live in Jakarta,” Head of PMPTSP Benni Aguscandra told Kompas yesterday.
Benni said his agency had issued the permit for Head In The Clouds music and arts festival, which was scheduled to be held at JIExpo Kemayoran this Saturday, but it has been retracted following confirmation of COVID-19 cases in Indonesia. American label 88rising, who organized the festival, has also announced that it is postponing the event indefinitely.
English rock band Foals and Japanese kawaii metal band Babymetal — whose shows are scheduled for March 10 and 29, respectively — had not been issued permits. The shows’ organizers have submitted their requests, but the agency has now decided against the concerts.
At the time of publication, promoters for Foals and Babymetal concerts have yet to announce the latest updates for the concerts.
Meanwhile, the organizer for headbang fest Hammersonic, scheduled for March 27-28, announced yesterday that it is currently coordinating with artists and the Jakarta government regarding a possible postponement. Two of the headliners, South African death metal band Vulvodynia and Italian gothic metal band Lacuna Coil, recently pulled out of the festival as they canceled the rest of their tours in Asia.
Symphony of destruction? Okay, sure, but make it cute. With their mix of candy-coated hooks and drum blasts seemingly forged at the gates of hell, BABYMETAL has emerged as a hard rock group that melds their native Japan’s kawaii aesthetic and J-pop theatrics with the pyrotechnics and ground-and-pound of American metal. Already a sensation back home, the duo has even toured internationally with some of the biggest stars in the genre, including their idols Metallica. Here, a profile of the enigmatic entertainers, in numbers.
22: Age of BABYMETAL’s oldest member Suzuka Nakamoto, also known as Su-metal.
20: Age of BABYMETAL’s youngest member Moa Kikuchi, also known as Moametal.
14: Moametal’s age when BABYMETAL headlined their first arena show.
3.5: Number of years it took to write their latest album, last year’s Metal Galaxy.
55,000: Number of people who attended BABYMETAL’s biggest ever show, at the Tokyo Dome.
26,386: Number of miles BABYMETAL’s have flown during their 2019 tour.
1: Number of times they’ve met Billie Eilish.
2–3: Number of times they’ve hung out with Slash.
17: Number of times they’ve opened for Red Hot Chili Peppers on The Getaway World Tour.
0: Number of times they’ve publicly discussed the mysterious 2018 departure of their founding member, Yiumetal.
5: Number of times they’ve opened for Lady Gaga on her ArtRave: The Artpop Ball Tour.
24: Number of awards they’ve won, including three for Most Devoted Fans at the Loudwire Music Awards.
1: Number of spirit animals that inspire the band’s lyrics (they claim to be the chosen ones of Kitsune the Fox God).
8: Number of styles of fox masks sold as tour merchandise. (It’s their thing. We don’t really get it.)
1: Number of newlyweds who have walked down the aisle to a BABYMETAL song (that we know of).
8: Number of hours spent practicing the choreography for their viral hit, “Gimme Chocolate.”
111,361,821+: Number of views on YouTube for the “Gimme Chocolate” music video.
100+: Number of Instagram fan accounts devoted to Moametal and Su-metal.
53: Number of years between the last Japanese act to crack the Top 40 of the Billboard 200 and BABYMETAL doing so in 2016.
1: Number of fire-breathing chickens that appear in the graphic novel Apocrypha: The Legend of Babymetal.
A trailer for BABYMETAL's upcoming DVD and Blu-ray, "Live At The Forum", is available below. Due on May 13, the effort was filmed at the Japanese pop-metal band's October 2019 first-ever arena concert in the U.S. at the The Forum in Los Angeles.
The concert was Su-metal and Moametal's second headlining arena concert outside of Japan. The 15-song set focuses on material from BABYMETAL's latest studio album, "Metal Galaxy", including "Da Da Dance", "Shanti Shanti Shanti" and "Pa Pa Ya!!"
BABYMETAL's third studio LP, "Metal Galaxy" hit No. 19 in the U.K. official album chart, No. 1 No. 1 on Billboard's Top Rock Albums chart, becoming the first Asian act to land at No. 1, and No. 18 on the German chart.
In the U.S., "Metal Galaxy" earned 28,000 equivalent album units (of which 27,000 were in album sales) in its first week of release. The album also topped the Hard Rock Albums chart.
"Metal Galaxy" entered the all-format Billboard 200 chart at No. 13. The group's previous disc, 2016's "Metal Resistance", peaked at No. 39.
"Metal Galaxy" was released in October via earMUSIC/Edel. The follow-up to 2016's "Metal Resistance" is based on the concept of "The Odyssey Of Metal Galaxy".
"Metal Galaxy" contains 14 songs, including four singles that were released prior to the LP's arrival: "Pa Pa Ya!!", "Starlight", "Distortion" and "Elevator Girl". The album expresses light and darkness, emotions like duality and ambivalence, and "new metal" created by various chemical reactions as other entities evolved and expanded in this album.
When Babymetal released their self-titled debut album in 2014, nobody was sure how to react. Their energetic fusion of pop vocals and dances with a loud 'heavy metal' sound and aesthetic had some people turning up their noses - and others turning up in their hundreds to the band's gigs.
I was lucky enough to attend such a concert at the Eventim Apollo around a week ago - and it was definitely an experience. Opting for a standing ticket, I found myself surrounded by members of the very demographic that had so vocally rejected Babymetal in their opening years - adult male metalheads.
Perhaps I had been a little narrow-minded - I had expected teenage girls, and perhaps a few diehard adult fans that had been following the trio since the start. But I was met with a much more diverse mix - older teenage fans, anime fans, punks (a few of which were there to see the phenomenal supporting band, Creeper) and seemingly every middle-aged metalhead in London.
"Metal isn't supposed to be cute", seemed to be the general consensus from metal purists back in 2014. But my night at the Apollo revealed something - the music scene has changed. Were the girls criticised because of their music, or was it because they were Asian, or was it because they were female? They brought a breath of fresh, adrenaline-laced air to a scene that has been clearly dominated by men to the point where the metalhead stereotype seems to be the human equivalent of a Norse god.
But in the 6 years since their debut, things seem to have changed. Music doesn't seem to be limited by gender, or age - everybody just turned up to bounce around and scream for a few hours, and that's okay. All I can say is I'm glad the crowd subverted my expectations - and I'm glad that experimental, energetic groups like Babymetal are keeping the London music scene alive.