NEWS; Tokio Hotel – Big hit in Malaysia

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German band Tokio Hotel played to thousands of screaming fans last weekend.

TOKIO Hotel has really only had one big hit on Malaysian airwaves, yet the band has already garnered a cult following here – if their screaming and crying fans are anything to go by.

Over 3,500 of them gathered last Saturday at 1-Utama Shopping Centre in Petaling Jaya, Selangor, for the bands debut concert in the country.

For the band members, however, this sort of reaction is not unfamiliar.

Identical twin brothers Bill (vocals) and Tom (guitars) Kaulitz, Georg Listing (bassist) and Gustav Schafer (drummer) form the biggest act to come out of Germany in recent times. They hail from Magdeburg, a medieval German town.


NEWS; Tokio Hotel - Big hit in Malaysia

They started off their music career as a band called Devlish, but later changed their name to Tokio Hotel – Tokio being the German spelling of the Japanese city Tokyo, before releasing their first German-language record Schrei (Scream) in 2005.

“We have never been to Tokyo. We were searching for a new name, a completely new life for us as a band where we worked with professionals, producers and studios. It was a completely new era for us and that is why we picked something new to us, like Tokyo.

“It is like a symbol for us … kind of like a goal for us to go there. We hope we can visit Tokyo this year. It would be cool,” said the frontman of the band, Bill.

The group has four number one singles and two chart-topping albums, selling nearly five million CDs and DVDs to date. They have gone 10 times platinum and clinched the award for Best Group from MTV Europe Music Awards last year and a Best New Artist from MTV Video Music Awards in 2008.

It is no wonder why the band received such a huge reception in Malaysia.

Also playing a part in their popularity is Bill, who with his long, spiky hair, heavy eye-makeup and skinny jeans, is the object of the fans’ adoration.

Throughout the concert, girls were screaming, “I love you, Bill.”

He was the consumate performer, knowing exactly how to react to the audience to get them wanting more, and had perfected all the major gestures of a rock star.

“I never had a role model. I think I just pick things from everything. I never look to other people and say I want to look like that or that. I just feel it. I think it is important to me that I never had rules in fashion,” Bill said at a press conference in Petaling Jaya a day before the concert.

Indeed, Bill’s fashion sense is a major point in conversations about the band, no less because of his androgynous and flamboyant look.

“I wear what I wanna wear. I wear what I feel comfortable in. It has always been that way. I went to school like that and it is the way my personality is,” said Bill, a fan of David Bowie and Aerosmith’s Steven Tyler.

“For 10 years I’ve been colouring my hair and I am really quick in putting my make-up. And you know, you need a lot of hair spray (to get my hair to stand). I use nearly one bottle everyday,” he shared.

While Bill goes with the glam rock look, his identical twin prefers to go hip hop with his cornrows hair and baggy pants.

“I think until we were six, we looked the same. We had little sweatshirts with Bill and Tom on it so that the teachers can see who is who. After that, we grew up to be completely different. I don’t know why. We are like one person,’ Bill shared.

Tom added: “We just look different. We are more than soulmates. We are like one person but we have developed in different ways. ”

Of course, the band would rather be known for its music. While they may all be relatively young, they draw from their own experiences when penning their music.

“Of course we write about our lives and we write about our feelings,” Bill shared.

Tom chimed in, saying: “Music is always about emotions,” in response to a question about how emotional and angsty a lot of their music are.

Put these together with their different musical taste, and what you get is the interesting blend of music that Tokio Hotel has become known for.

“Gustav likes the more hardcore stuff like Metallica. Tom listens to hip-hop and he likes all the Jay-Z stuff, while I like Stereophonics and Aerosmith. So it is all very different,” said Bill.

The band’s first language is German, but the bold step it chose to take in making music in English has obviously paid off.

Their first English-language record, which was a translation of Schrei, was released in the US in 2008, followed by Humanoid, their second English-language album, last year.

Their first single from that album, Automatic, is getting a lot of airtime on Malaysian radio currently.

“It was really hard at first to switch from German to English. I think my English is really bad. We learnt English in school but that was it.

“For the first English record, it was really strange for me as I had always sung in German. I am a perfectionist and I wanted to sound natural like a native speaker and so that took some time.

“But now, I can’t decide what I prefer. I like the English record and I also like the German one. So I think in the future, we will always do it this way and we would have a translation for both languages,” Bill explained.

At the concert, Tokio Hotel performed 11 songs in both languages. The haunting ballad Monsoon, was sung in German.

And then, as they left, Bill said in perfect English: “Thank you. See you again!”

Word is that the band will be returning to Malaysia for another concert, so we might just be seeing Bill – with his gravity-defying mohawk – and his bandmates again real soon.

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Comment by maria jenessa
2010-05-09 09:59:47

when is tokio hotel go to jakarta? 🙂

Comment by Rocky Rachelle
2010-05-09 20:48:51


-Rocky Rachelle

Comment by Magenta
2010-05-09 12:32:28

when is tokio hotel coming to toronto canada ?!!!!!

Comment by T.T.
2010-05-09 14:56:07

WHEN IZ THE TOKIO HOTEL COMING 2 MARYLAND 4 THE PERFORMANCE?!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!???????????????????????????????????????????

Comment by Bethany
2010-05-09 15:23:51

I wish Tokio Hotel would come to England, i’d love to see them live : )

Comment by Haliunaa
2010-05-09 23:51:11

i wish Tokio hotel would come to Mongolia. Guys come here please!

Comment by Emily
2010-08-10 14:42:18

Hahaha. I love that ‘gravity-defying’ mohawk.

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