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1. Babymetal Death

2. Ljime, Dame, Zettai

3. Gimme Chocolate!!

4. Doki Doki Morning

5. Gj!

6. No Rain, No Rainbow

7. Distortion (feat Alissa White-Gluz)

8. PA PA YA!! (feat F.HERO)

9. Megitsune

10. Karate

11. Headbangeeeeerrrrr!!!!!

12. The One

13. Road Of Resistance

Live albums are always strange beasts in my opinion. It’s an album of songs you may have already heard before, but arranged in a different way and performed (usually) with a much more rough and ready edge. Don’t get me wrong, some live albums are absolute classics of the genre, but those are usually from bands with a huge back catalogue to select from, and as much as I enjoy BABYMETAL (and I do), they only have three studio albums to pick tracks from.

The other problem you often get with live albums is that any opening that sets the scene (that is usually hugely exciting if you are actually there) tend to be underwhelming on record. And I hate to say it, but that was my impression of track one – “Babymetal Death”. I know it’s the opening track on their first album (and I didn’t really like it then), but here it is nearly eight and a half minutes of scene setting that I don’t think the audio version of this gig really needed!

Luckily, it’s the weakest track here, as once “Ljime, Dame, Zettai” starts, the album proper gets going, and all reservations are immediately put aside. My biggest concern in a BABYMETAL live album (and bear in mind, I’d never listened to any other live albums by them) was whether their incredibly polished sound from the studio albums would translate to a live recording. And I am pleased to say that it absolutely does!

This live album works as all of the best ones do, which is as essentially an organic Greatest Hits album. Do I necessarily agree with all of the tracks that are here? No – there are a couple of tracks I’d love to hear live that weren’t on this album, but on the other hand, no-one can deny the power of the triple threat that is “Gimme Chocolate!!” followed by “Doki Doki Morning”, followed by “Gj!” The crowd chanting ‘Heavy Metal’ before “Gimme Chocolate!!” starts makes you feel like you really are part of this gig, and it really helps absorb you into the atmosphere.

That’s two of my live album requirements that this album has now ticked off, a great setlist and a recording that absorbs you into that live atmosphere. So what’s my third? Well the third is that you get some tracks that are significantly different than the recorded versions – special renditions of popular songs that could only happen in a live environment. This album delivers one absolute cracker in the form of the nearly-15 minute version of “Road Of Resistance” which is the closing track, but by and large the rest of the album is populated by the versions of songs that you already know and love.

Is '10 BABYMETAL BUDOKAN' an essential live album? For the BABYMETAL completionists, absolutely. For the casual BABYMETAL fans it is certainly a good time, but doesn’t do a lot different to the three studio albums that you’ve already heard. That’s not to say it is bad by any means, it’s just supplemental rather than essential. Having said all of that, if you want to feel like you are at a BABYMETAL gig and want to experience that excitement, you could do far worse than to put this album on at a deafening volume and enjoy yourself!

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Review - Michael Braunton


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