‘Te Reo Metal’ became the official language of New Zealand music last Friday, when kiwi thrash metal trio Alien Weaponry’s (Niel de Jong) debut album Tū entered the NZ album chart at no. 1.
“We really hoped the album would get on the charts in New Zealand,” says guitarist and lead singer Lewis de Jong. “But we never thought it would hit number 1 – especially when we heard that Katchafire (no. 3) and Tami Nielsen (no. 2) were releasing albums on the same day. We are so grateful to everyone who has bought, downloaded and streamed our music, especially everyone who pre-ordered it through our crowd funding campaign and record stores, which would have helped get it to the no. 1 spot.”
New Zealand isn’t the only place where Tū is taking off. The album has had over a million streams on Spotify since its release on 1 June; and tracks from it have been added to over 7,000 playlists worldwide, including Spotify's own metal genre playlists New Blood, New Metal Tracks, Kickass Metal and Thrash Metal Big 4 & Friends.
It has also been getting rave reviews from critics and fans all over the globe.
“[We] played Alien Weaponry’s Tū in full today at 6pm and holy shitballs the notifications exploded. This is one badass album and their slot at Bloodstock Festival is gonna be one NOT to be missed!” said UK based Primordial Radio.
Overdrive magazine in Australia wrote, “By fusing their Māori culture within their music, Alien Weaponry offer the world of metal something completely new and special.”
Netherlands online magazine MetalFan.nl enthused, “These guys have delivered a pearl of a debut record.”
Songs from the album have been playlisted by over 50 radio stations in the USA, with the band’s latest single ‘Kai Tangata’ last week rocketing to the no. 1 slot on the prestigious ‘Devil’s Dozen’ countdown for the Liquid Metal show on New York based Sirius XM toppling metal heavyweights Parkway Drive from the top slot.
“Lots of bands have become really big after being included in the Devil’s Dozen,” says drummer Henry de Jong. “Getting onto the Devil's Dozen really helped launch fellow label partners Jinjer in the USA so that was pretty big news for us, and we hope it’s a sign of things to come.”
Alien Weaponry have just announced a 3-date tour of Australia in July (Melbourne on the 4th; Sydney on the 6th; and the Dead of Winter Festival in Brisbane on the 7th), after which they head to Europe and the UK for performances at some of the metal world’s most prestigious festivals including Waken Open Air, Metal Days and Bloodstock Open Air.
Tū is available in New Zealand through JB Hi-Fi, Marbecks, Real Groovy, Mighty Ape, The Warehouse and other record outlets; and can be purchased HERE through Napalm Records worldwide.