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Babymetal becomes 1st Asian act to top Billboard’s rock albums chart

Babymetal performs at Aftershock 2019 at Discovery Park on Oct. 13, 2019 in Sacramento, Calif. AMUSE/Getty Images

Babymetal has topped Billboard’s Top Rock Albums chart with its third and latest album, the critically acclaimed Metal Galaxy (2019), which dropped on Oct. 11.

Perhaps most significantly, Babymetal is now the first Asian act ever to top the rock chart.

In its 13 years of existence, no other Asian artist or band has reached the prestigious No. 1. Babymetal claimed the spot from The Beatles, whose Abbey Road (1969) record perched atop the throne for two weeks while celebrating its 50th anniversary.

According to Nielsen Music, the Japanese duo claimed the spot for the week of Oct. 26 with a tally of 28,000 album units earned — 27,000 of which were made in physical or digital album sales.

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The band’s last record, Metal Resistance (2016), sold less than half of that total its first week — less than 13,000 copies.

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The women-led band’s core members are Suzuka Nakamoto and Moa Kikuchi, who are also responsible for the writing of the music.

Onstage, the musicians go by Su-metal and Moametal. They are backed by a number of professional metal musicians and backup dancers to create the much-beloved live spectacle that Babymetal is best known for.

The group is considered by many to be the inventor of “Kawaii metal,” described as a genre that blends the sounds of traditional J-pop and different styles of heavy metal music.

Babymetal, along with bands like Ladybaby and Band-Maid, is among the first groups considered part the niche subgenre.

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Metal Galaxy is now available through all major streaming platforms.

The album features singles such as Distortion, Starlight and Pa Pa Ya!!

adam.wallis@globalnews.ca

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