Watch Rina Sawayama bring some nu metal energy to Coachella


Coachella isn’t exactly the first festival you’d usually associate with bringing the riffs, and while the likes of Code Orange and Turnstile injected this year’s lineup with some nice, big doses of metal and hardcore, there was a clear lack of mosh-ready bangers represented across 2022’s bill overall (despite Danny Elfman’s best efforts).

Thank the dark lords, then, for Rina Sawayama. The Japanese-born British singer-songwriter blew critics away with 2020’s debut album Sawayama, her scintillating mash-up of shiny pop, anthemic rock and metal and propulsive EDM marching its way into album-of-the-year lists all over the place.

This past weekend was leg two of Coachella 2022, and Rina’s 11-song set proved one of the highlights of the entire festival, blazing through tracks like stadium-ready rocker Dynasty and riffy, nu metal-influenced single STFU!, flanked by backing dancers and a live band to bring some much-needed energy to the Gobi tent.

“My music is a blend of a lot of different genres, but I always find myself taking inspiration from metal,” Rina told Metal Hammer last year. “Songs like STFU! and XS obviously have metal/nu metal influences, but even my earlier songs like [2017’s] Afterlife do as well. I love matching pop production with crunchy guitar riffs and an epic solo.”

Rina was one of the 50+ artists invited to contribute to Metallica’s Blacklist project, recording a propulsive, industrialised version of Enter Sandman that managed to breathe new life into one of the most famous metal songs in history.

“It was an absolute honour,” she said of being involved in the project. “I definitely attempted to channel Hetfield.”

Watch Rina bring the nu metal to Coachella with STFU! below.

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