Iron maidens Hysterica (seen here demanding a picture with our publicity-shy editor) held the Hard Rock Hell crowd in the palm of their hands in Prestatyn last month for 30 brief but brilliant minutes.

And with debut album Metalwar making waves across the UK and Europe we’re predicting a big year ahead for the foxy five-piece.

Hysterica hope to return to British shores in 2010 for a full tour of the country which spawned Judas Priest – the band which inspired Bitchie and her band to make metal music in the first place. We talked exclusively to the ultimate rock chicks.

rushonrock: Could your Hard Rock Hell set be the big break you need in Britain?

Anni De Vil: Playing Hard Rock Hell was a great opportunity to bring the band over the UK and play to some new faces. The whole festival was a lot of fun and we loved watching the other bands and being around so many rockers and metal fans. We’d played a similar festival in Holland the month before – the same mix of bands but on a smaller scale. Seeing so many people at HRH was fantastic for us.

rushonrock: So when will you return?

Bitchie: We’d love to come back to the UK as soon as possible but we need to make some key contacts to put a tour together. We need to find someone who’s professional and believes in us and in return we’ll put on the shows to match! I’d say Holland, Germany and Sweden are where we’re most popular right now but we’d love to add Britain to that list. There are so many towns and cities to play where people love their rock and it’s our kind of country.

rushonrock: Why your kind of country?

Jessica: The music we play isn’t so big in countries like Sweden but I think UK audiences who have grown up listening to the NWOBHM bands will like our style.

rushonrock: How did Hysterica come about?

B: The first thing I wanted to do was set up a proper girl band that could rock because there aren’t enough in the world right now. I wanted to do something meaningful with my music and have a mission. That mission became Hysterica. Then we decided on the music we would play. My dream was to play music like Judas Priest and so I had to find the female musicians who could deliver that. I’ve always listened to what’s new on the rock and metal scene too so I wanted to fuse that classic Priest sound with a modern approach. The album is an old school metal record with a modern twist. Creating the songs I wanted hasn’t been too difficult to date.

rushonrock: Does being a metal maiden have its benefits?

ADV: We do get a lot of attention because we’re five girls but that’s great as far as I’m concerned. It would be nice if people listened to the music more though – we don’t want to be known as five metal chicks as much as we want to be known for our metal and our shows. Our aim is to recreate the really big metal shows of 20 or 30 years ago – we’ve got the songs to pull it off.

rushonrock: So is your image or your music the priority?

J: We think it’s important to have all the elements to make people sit up and take notice. With Hysterica the sound and the vision are equally critical.

ADV: That’s what I want when I watch a band live. I want them to sound good, play great songs and deliver a memorable performance. You want to see something that’s special on the night you’re there. There are so many bands that it’s tough to come up with something new in your show but that’s what we’re trying to do.

rushonrock: Any ideas?

SatAnica: We do quite like the idea of a Spinal Tap moment.

ADV: Yeah we love the part in the film where they emerge from the pods – we’re thinking of being born from giant vaginas with a lot of glitter! Seriously we want to create something that’s totally new with a female touch but finding an original idea is going to be difficult. You see so many girl bands and so many bands with girl singers that we’re not hiding from the fact that we have to play on one of our strengths which is our image. We’re not trying to shy away from the way we look because we think we look good but there’s more to us than that.

J: We are musicians first and entertainers second. We want to be heard as much as we want to be seen!