Alien Weaponry’s Lewis de Jong on leading the Haka for New Zealand metal, broken bones, and why being heavy is still the goal

Lewis de Jong
(Image credit: Miikka Skaffari/Getty Images)

Alien Weaponry’s Tangaroa is the Waipu, New Zealand, trio’s most boundary-pushing statement yet, folding elements of dark alternative and prog into a foundation of groove metal and lyrics often sung in the native indigenous language, Māori, also known as te reo (“the language”). 

Naturally, this means guitarist-vocalist Lewis de Jong is itching to get out on the road to support their sophomore album. When reached in early July, the guitarist adds that he’s also desperate to finally yank off the cast that’s been on his fretting arm since the spring, the result of a scooter accident in Christchurch following a performance alongside the New Zealand Symphony Orchestra.  

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Gregory Adams

Gregory Adams is a Vancouver-based arts reporter. From metal legends to emerging pop icons to the best of the basement circuit, he’s interviewed musicians across countless genres for nearly two decades, most recently with Guitar World, Bass Player, Revolver, and more – as well as through his independent newsletter, Gut Feeling. This all still blows his mind. He’s a guitar player, generally bouncing hardcore riffs off his ’52 Tele reissue and a dinged-up SG.