Japan had its share of heavy metal and hard rock bands in the 1980s, but because many of them recorded in Japanese, they enjoyed little or no exposure in the English-language world. The thing that set Show-Ya apart from many other Japanese metal/hard rock acts of the 1980s was the fact that all five of its members were women--like the U.S., England and Canada, Japan had a metal/hard rock scene that was male-dominated but nonetheless gave us some talented female headbangers. Outerlimits, Show-Ya's seventh album, is as diverse as it is focused. Some of the songs on this CD are as forceful as what you'd have found on an Ozzy Osbourne or Iron Maiden album, while others are the type of slick pop-metal/hard rock items you would have expected from Heart, Vixen or Lita Ford. The playing is tight, and it's clear that lead vocalist Keiko Terada (who sings mostly in Japanese, with English phrases inserted here and there) has sizable chops even though her enunciation in English isn't perfect--she seems to be inserting the English phrases as a way of expressing solidarity with non-Japanese rockers. Outerlimits, like Show-Ya's previous albums, was released only in Japan, although imported copies found their way to some North American and European stores. This CD is hard to find outside of Japan, but if you're a metalhead, it's well worth searching for.
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