If you are a fan of Japanese pop metal band, Babymetal but would like to hear ‘death metal’ growls accompanying the music rather than cute, young girls’ voices, then you may prefer the pop metal band, Ladybaby (レディーベイビー).
Japanese pop bands typically feature cute idols but Ladybaby is a pop metal band featuring two young girls and one cross-dressing man who tries to make it cool and cute at the same time. The bearded cross-dressing man is known by his alias, Ladybeard, and definitely hogs the spotlight in their music videos.
Ladybeard is not only a crossdresser but also a professional wrestler and martial artist from Australia. He initially went to Hong Kong to pursue a career in kung fu movies and while living there, he was invited to try out a wrestling club and went on to be a wrestler. Professional wrestling is definitely something he enjoys as it combines everything he loves including acting, martial arts and putting on a performance. During his stint as a wrestler, he wore dresses, sported two ponytails, and named himself Ladybeard. Also, because of his passion for heavy metal, he also sang heavy metal covers of Cantonese pop songs in the same get-up. Many people, upon seeing his performance, advised him to go to Japan as they are well-known for their love of strange and quirky acts, so he did!
After making appearances in Japanese magazines, Ladybeard formed the band, Ladybaby with Rie Kaneko and Rei Kuromiya in early 2015. Ladybeard also labelled his style of music as ‘kawaiicore’ (cutecore). The band released their first music video for the single ‘Nippon Manju’ (Japanese Bun) which is a song about all the nice things in Japan. The music video also contains English subtitles too.
So what do you think of Ladybeard? Do you find him kawaii (cute) or scary?
I think Ladybaby may become more popular over time as it definitely stands out amongst other bands and the Japanese love and appreciate uniqueness and oddities. Ladybeard is not a bad singer either and adds a good metal voice to the songs.