Live Review: Baby Metal at The Roundhouse, London

Baby Metal and Vukovi

The Roundhouse, London 


Bonus fact time: The Victorians built The Roundhouse as a steam engine turntable during the Victorian era before it was repurposed as a venue. Tonight sees two bands playing music that is itself a reimagining of something older being made fit for the next generation. Vukovi are representative of how rock is encompassing a wider set of influences these days. They ooze confidence with Janine Shilstone’s banter a feature throughout the set. The music sits just the right side of accessible to make new fans while still doing enough to receive nods of approval from the more technically minded. It is the vocals that punch through the most though. Shilstone has something many do not – her voice is memorable. That’s quite an asset. Tonight Vukovi prove to be the perfect warm up act. It’s not hard to imagine them coming back as headliners in their own right in the near future.

Rapidly gaining a huge following around a decade ago some people thought Baby Metal were a novelty, a flash in the pan that would disappear into history. How wrong those doubters were. The premise of combining kawaii imagery with heavy metal will only take you so far though. What these Japanese artists have done so well is hone their art. First up we need to applaud the masked musicians, the ‘Kami Band’. Their proficiency and technical ability is astonishing. The writing comes alive on stage in an almost tribal way, it makes you feel a part of the performance. Added to that we have Su-Metal, Moametal and Momometal who produce breath taking choreographic moves that flow beautifully linking the songs perfectly. The vocals have matured the most over the years and now have a depth and tone that are up there with the best. To witness this singing combined with all the dance moves is jaw dropping at times. Make no mistake when you’re watching Baby Metal you know you’re seeing a world class act. The sheer hard work that has gone into tonight’s spectacular can be seen in every move. And the weird thing is, you feel they haven’t even peaked yet. For Baby Metal the success story looks set to continue for some time.

Review and Photos by Gary Trueman