Parallel Japan

Idol’s jagged edge.

Let’s tell a story, one that involves yet another attempt at forming a heavy idol group and failing and coming back stronger.

I’m actually not talking about Parallel Japan, but their predecessor, Parallel 5.

Notice anything, or anyone, familiar? Like maybe a certain center for a certain idolcore phenomenon? She’s obviously doing other things now. And that’s literally the story of Parallel 5 — they formed as something of a dance unit with their own vocals, all self-produced, and then lost one of the best singers in the game probably right about the time when they were starting to feel like they were getting somewhere. “Look at Me,” after all, is a pretty okay song.

This is usually the part of the story when the rest of the group breaks up, gets repackaged, etc. But rarely are such things the choice of the members so much as it is the prerogatives of management, and Parallel 5 were running that show themselves.

So despite losses in March 2015, the remaining members — Sari, Asumi and Tibiyui — basically said, “Okay, nbd, let’s reboot.” And that’s what they did. They kept working. According to reader Caleb, they were promised debuts that never materialized. Somebody disappeared with their money; yes, Parallel Japan could very easily have a sad trombone accompaniment.

Definitely feel free to correct this, but most indications are that their first significant appearance on stage following the regroup was actually at the 2015 Tokyo Idol Festival backing up none other than Pour Lui:

They also, without a single official release, spent the autumn of that year rolling out a series of videos that really highlight what Parallel Japan is all about:

The first thing that springs to mind for me when I think about Parallel is a news segment that MTV News did following Kurt Cobain’s death. It involved interviews with mourners, one of whom remarked that he didn’t even know what to do with himself anymore, given that Nirvana was about all he listened to. “Well, them, and Mudhoney.” I’m not saying that Parallel is the Mudhoney of idolcore (not like the way that I look at Himekyun Fruit Can as the Van Halen of rock idols), but that for every ascendant master of a particular scene or sound, there are always keeping-it-real, beloved-by-fans acts at the margins, fiercely independent and just embodying grit and earned emotional expression.

That is Parallel. You can see it in their dance — crisp and professional, a cut above just about everybody else not named Q’ulle, but so expressly violent — and hear it in their songs — raw, largely unfiltered, intense and purposeful. This isn’t yami-kawaii; this spits in kawaii’s face.

But unlike with Mudhoney, I get the feeling that Parallel’s story has a happier ending, or at least a more successful one. You may have noticed that they’re suddenly all over the place, sharing stages with everybody from BiSH to Screaming Sixties to NEXT Shoujo Jiken; their anniversary show was loaded with groups featured on this site, and idol Twitter buzzed about it for days. And for what it’s worth, I don’t know if I’ve ever seen a group more well-respected by their peers: Maybe because they’re independent, or maybe because they’re just plain loved, but everybody takes photos after and genuinely shows a lot of affection.

Of course, such a sudden burst of attention is bound to mean something, right? As of this writing, the scuttlebutt suggests an album, which would be very cool. If anybody out there would get a huge bump out of working with pro producer to refine their sound, it’s Parallel, and the same goes for their presentation if they can get with solid management, especially if that management doesn’t make them lose their indie edge. Like, for example, these guys. The sudden appearance of this track on Soundcloud, and the accompanying art, suggests the possibility.

So keep an eye out for Parallel. They seemed to be poised to do some serious damage.

What they sound like

A gritty combination of hard rock and idolcore. Their performing style is so well-conceived and well-executed that you can almost tell the sound of their songs just from watching them dance. Which is violent. They are violent even when nobody actually gets hurt. Violence.

You’ll like them if

This is a tough one, and I hate to bring back Seattle scene comparisons, but I actually think that you’ll be able to get into Parallel Japan best if you’re a fan of those 90s-era bands that were distorting blues rock and adding punk and metal elements. Of course, Parallel involves plenty of synths, too, in which case the PassCodes of the world can give you a good place to start.

Entries on the Ultimate Homicidol Playlist


Sari, leader of Japanese idolcore group Parallel Japan
Asumi, member of Japanese idolcore group Parallel Japan
Tibiyui, member of Japanese idolcore group Parallel Japan


There isn’t one yet!


The Spunky

Just you and me, punk rock girl!

Do you like idols? And do you like things that are fun? And do you like rock ‘n’ roll music played at a fast tempo? Well, then you’ll like The Spunky. Get over yourself.

I can say with total honesty that I (even I!) hadn’t yet connected with THE SPUNKY when preparations for this site began, but I was cruising other websites and communities on the regular to make sure that I would be exposed to enough artists to warrant actually having a site that wouldn’t be just another Babymetal tribute.

“You failed at that one, Maniac!” Oh, you.

At any rate, I actually had a few light touches with THE SPUNKY along the way … unfortunately at the same time that I was getting a little idol fatigue. It’s not the idols’ fault that “Thunderbolt” was first played by me in the context of Little Brother asking out loud if every girl in Japan was in some kind of idol group.

But the name registered, and I recalled that there was an album coming out, and I even managed to follow up on that. And when I got to play the teaser, I got a little excited.

Of course, where most of all-of-us first got acquainted with them was in the 2016 Homicidols Corenament, where they shocked the literal world by winning the punk idols category and ultimately finishing in third place with their entry “Rock ‘n’ Roll and Idol and I”:

What are the things that stand out here, and just in general across their work? One, it’s all really well-written and well-produced, part of which you can tell because 2) the members are stupid talented, and their voices are put right out in front.

Also, their music is fun. This site owes its life as much to BiS and their legacy as anything, and there’s usually a certain merriment in the culture-shocking madness to those groups, but it’s all so deliberate that, if you take a step back, you wonder why they even bothered if it was all so joyless. Not the case for THE SPUNKY, who I’m not sure can even define “irony,” let alone apply it to their work.

And dammit, that easy-breezy attitude is very, very welcome sometimes.

These bouncy bolts of lightning are currently beginning what could be looked at as their big move, having recently relocated their performance schedule to Tokyo after getting their start in Nagoya. They’re also close to a ton of talent on the production side, with musical contributions from members of Kishidan (the band that inspired C-Style) and Mad Capsule Markets.

And, relevant to the point of this whole site, they have their eye on international markets.

I have to think that they have a chance. As mentioned, the music is on point, but the members really do make it happen. Rira is quite good on her own, but the real talent shines when she and Yuhi are working together. And I hate to celebrate one member over others in a group so small, but it’s worth pointing out that Yuhi (at 15!), given a chance to really show her chops with a power ballad …

If you’re having a hard time picking her out, you are crazy, because this is a solo song.

… she gets up there with the Nakamotos and Azumas and … the Ends (?) of the world.

At this point, having pumped out three quality singles and a full album in a little over two years together, and having relocated operations to the center of the idolverse in Tokyo, and being loaded with talent, the future for THE SPUNKY is a bright one.

What they sound like

Their base sound is a rough amalgam of Bay-area punk, with the brightness of the Bouncing Souls tempered with just a bit of an edge, but they’re legitimately “rock ‘n’ roll idols” with some true rockers in their repertoire. They may be idols, but the rock is real. And also the idol. They do that, too.

You’ll like them if

You’ve always wanted Hot Topic to come to life, or you still go to the Warped Tour every year even though it’s a caricature of itself and you know enough idol to think, “You know what this second stage needs right now? Idols doing punk that’s roughly 80 percent better than that terrible band that acted like a Jane’s Addiction cover band but sounded more like the sound that Dave Navarro’s liver makes in the morning.”

Entries on the Ultimate Homicidol Playlist

THE SPUNKY, make more YouTube-able videos of your best stuff. I can’t make things happen with Soundcloud! Nonetheless, “Rock ‘n’ Roll and Idol and I” and “Thunderbolt” are both there. “Kanjo VOLTAGE” would be if you had a non-live video for it; nonetheless, enjoy the crap out of this very good song.


Rira from Japanese pop punk idol group The Spunky
Yuhi from Japanese pop punk idol group The Spunky

Former Members

Seira from Japanese pop punk idol group The Spunky


“Thunderbolt” (single)
“Kanjo VOLTAGE” (single)
“Rock ‘n’ Roll and Idol and I” (single)
A (album)


Lyric Holic

The idol world’s neo-gothic mistresses of darkness.

I’m actually at a loss for why Lyric Holic isn’t a bigger deal. As the kids say, this is straight fire:

I went with the live video for this because it includes wota how-tos, and that’s amazing. Also, appreciate just how little effort Tama puts into dancing.

I can’t even get a read for when they debuted. Their earliest YouTube contribution is from late in 2014, and everything about it looks like a meaningful first effort, so maybe we can take that on faith. But then they already had their third single out in summer 2015, and a DVD early in 2016? It takes some idol groups years to get that far.

So lack of idea of how to figure out Lyric Holic’s ascent and current status aside, I find them more and more inexplicable the more that I learn about them. Is their music good? Most of it! Dramatic, operatic and violent, with the occasional dive into a Willy Wonka fever dream:

To whit: Their first video.

Which, okay, so a little S&M gothlita never hurt anybody, but this is some Anne Rice stuff, all erotic and necrophagic and like something you might see Jerry Only credited as the director for, and all wrapped up in that Bram Stoker look that’s sort of their signature.


So who are Lyric Holic? There’s that inexplicable that I mentioned. I remember at first thinking it was kind of a weird name, whatever, but the backdrop in the “Alice” video and things that I’ve seen on Tama’s Twitter have me wondering if it is not, in fact, Tama that’s the lyric holic, and this is really the lyric holic’s band, or something.

Does it matter? No. There are three members. They have interesting Euro-style stage names and dress like they still need to finish getting ready for a masquerade at a wonderful Victorian country estate. They sort of live in this astonishingly dramatic world, titling their performances things like “Labyrinth of the Flower” and “Debut da la Fin.” I’m not entirely certain that they aren’t vampires.

In other words, Lyric Holic is confounding. Their music is good, the members are interesting, their look is unique … and I still don’t understand.

What they sound like

When they’re metal, they get metal, with melody and brutality blended together, led by Tama’s very versatile voice and with sweetly idol contributions from Lu Lu and Lynne. Like, they sound like symphonic metal sung by idols. It is that simple sometimes.

You’ll like them if

I’ve found that Lyric Holic, along with Fruitpochette, is one of the metal idol groups that has more appeal to metalheads, particularly fans of the melodic and symphonic European looks.

“Don’t you usually put in some random cross-genre comparison here, or add something kind of forehandedly insulting?”

I do! Is this better? “Or are you about 15, angsty, at Hot Topic with a parent’s credit card and looking for something more elegant than whatever Warped Tour band of the month has all your friends’ attention?”

Like, Lyric Holic’s cool, but I know a disaffected teenager’s favorite band when I see it. It’s not their fault.

Entries on the Ultimate Homicidol Playlist:

This is genuinely hard because they have a lot of video up, but most of it is repeats or low-quality live footage, and they do that thing where snips of several songs are all on the same video file. However, gimme “Alice” up there, plus “STARGAZER” and “SISTER,” which are basically symphonic thrash and could stand up as closing theme music for a weird Castlevania sequel.


Tama E Carmel
Tama from Japanese idol metal group Lyric Holic
Lu Lu Luria
Lulu Luria from Japanese idol metal group Lyric Holic
Shiorin a la Mode
Shiorin a la Mode from Japanese idol metal group Lyric Holic

Former Members

Lynne Francoise
Lynne Francoise, former member of Japanese idol fantasy metal group Lyric Holic

I’m literally guessing with their names, cobbling this together from Google and a German-language profile. Correct me if you can.


“Dependence” (single)
“Stargazer” (single)
“Gojikanatibu” (single)

They’ve also released a DVD, Alice, and I’d ordinarily not list videos in a discography, but I have a feeling that there’s some original kind of content in there.


Zenbu Kimi no Sei Da

There are levels to this violence.

Back when I was but a new, budding Maniac, I’d let YouTube take me on these incredible journeys. It had made me a BiS list, for instance, and I’d let that sucker run for hours at a time at work. I can’t even begin to try to number how many groups I found that way; it’s a lot. And some of them wound up being just kind of there in the end, while others were awesome enough that I wanted to learn more about them and eventually start a music website with them as a focus … and then there was Zenbu Kimi no Sei Da.

Hot. Damn.

One thing that happens to just about everybody while they’re discovering the hard side of idol is that moment, or maybe it’s many moments, when you just sit there and watch a video play through like five times, trying to figure out just what the hell you’re watching and listening to these incredibly dense, rich, violent songs and make sense of them.

Zenbu Kimi no Sei Da (“It’s All Your Fault”) came along at a very ripe moment. Babymetal was conquering the world, BiSH was stepping into BiS’s shadow, groups like PassCode and Party Rockets were showing that idols could do music both hard and accessible … in other words, somebody who was willing to put all of that up there together was going to get attention in a good way.

A couple of digital singles and an album later, Kiminosei have become regulars on the rock+idol scene, and they’re at the forefront of the yami-kawaii … movement? scene? something. Regardless, it’s a fantastic way to approach performance, all twisted emotions and sickly appearance and bent expectations. You’d see them and be like “Oh how cool, they look like an A-pop grou–” and then get stabbed in the face. Like, remember GoGo Yubari from the Kill Bill movies? She’d probably be all about this (when she wasn’t working as a creative director for Deep Girl).

What they sound like

Mix one part J-pop and one part hardcore, place in blender, drizzle in denpa. Between them and sister group Yukueshirezutsurezure, they’re charting this beautifully tortured space that I hope goes really far.

You’ll like them if

I don’t have a good comparison for this one. Maybe if you like Converge and all in the same day, or you remember that little window of time when Hole was just a tiny bit poppy and you approved. They have moments that actually aren’t that far from Bad Religion.

Entries on the Ultimate Homicidol Playlist:

“ShitEnd | Placebo” of course, plus:

I’d love to have more, but they’re like professionally averse to releasing video.


Mogeki Aza
Mogeki Aza of Japanese yami-kawaii idolcore group Zenbu Kimi no Sei Da
Kisaragi Megumi
Kisaragi Megumi of Japanese yami-kawaii idolcore group Zenbu Kimi no Sei Da
Narumi Gomochi
Narumi Gomochi of Japanese yami-kawaii idolcore group Zenbu Kimi no Sei Da
Mashiro of Japanese yami-kawaii idolcore group Zenbu Kimi no Sei Da
Hitomi Yotsu
Hitomi Yotsu of Japanese yami-kawaii idolcore group Zenbu Kimi no Sei Da


“Neo Jealous✡Mero Chaos” (digital single)
“ShitEnd | Placebo” (digital single)
Yamikawa IMRAD (album)


Why You Love It: Su-metal’s Voice

If you’re at all familiar with Babymetal, you know Nakamoto Suzuka, Su-metal, the Queen, the Goddess. One of the first coherent thoughts that people have after discovering the group (you know, after the shock of metal-meets-dance-meets-teens) is “Holy shit, that girl can motherhubbard sing.”

To whit:

Yeah, I chose audio-only. You sometimes want a clean recording. Continue reading



Is this what they mean by glam?

Q’ulle doesn’t get as much attention from other people who follow the indies, and I get it; this is a slick, pro group. But that doesn’t meant that they don’t rock.

Q’ulle actually began when a dance group called, appropriately, Danceroid, broke up by one means or another in June 2014; five members decided that it was time to sing, too.

Within a few months, they had an intro single and were signed by a major label, and it’s pretty much been off to the races ever since — three more singles and a full album, with another single pending. They’re having an Asia tour for early 2016. Get hype!

So another rock idol group, Maniac? Yes. Because while many idol groups will do rock songs here and there, and some groups use “rock music” writ large as kind of a base, they don’t really embrace it. Q’ulle does. And no, they aren’t as hard as, say, Himekyun Fruit Can, and I doubt that they’ll ever try to break themselves out of the idol mold, but their music holds up, is good, and they deserve to be here.

Also (and this is purely personal), their no-doubt embrace of fashion instead of typical idol outfits is great. Dress for the job you want, kids, not the job you have; Q’ulle dresses like they want to be on worldwide TV.

What they sound like

Like J-rock done by idols, except that the band desperately wants to drop their tuning a step and maybe shred a little. It yields an uncertain admixture of pop, pop rock and popcore, a pop group that rocks. They actually aren’t that far off from a Europop sound a lot of the time, honestly, but the J is absolutely evident.

You’ll like them if

Do you like Perfume and wish they’d try to get a little harder sometimes? Do you like PassCode and wish they’d tone it down a little? Hell, did you like Bon Jovi around the time of Slippery When Wet? Or maybe you just like good songs with a lot of melody and some guitar riffs. You’ll like Q’ulle.

Entries on the Ultimate Homicidol Playlist:


Ikura is a member of Japanese rock idol group Q'ulle
YouTube channel
Yuzuki is a member of Japanese rock idol group Q'ulle
Maam is a member of Japanese rock idol group Q'ulle
Manako is a member of Japanese rock idol group Q'ulle
Yakko is a member of Japanese rock idol group Q'ulle


“mic check one two” (single)
“Monster” (single)
“Heartbeat” (single)
Q’&A — Q’ulle & Answer (album)
“Unreal/Hope” (single)


Party Rockets GT

Hard edges know no age.

This isn’t even the newest, updatedest Party Rockets GT.

I really have to cop to not having the slightest blessed idea what the interrelationship between Party Rockets, Tokyo Rockets and Party Rockets GT was until I started to work on this site; from the little bit that I’d read while absolutely totally legally obtaining their music, I was under the impression that Tokyo Rockets was the original, Party Rockets was a junior/trainee unit of them, and Party Rockets GT was just plain confusing.

Fear not! (“I wasn’t afraid.” “Shut up, yes you were.”) As it turns out, Party Rockets GT is Party Rockets, only with a highly revamped membership. They also aren’t a junior or trainee unit for anybody, but are actually kind of a weirdly positioned “elder” unit in the revitalized idol rock scene (it’s weird because their average age is like 17). And it’s Tokyo Rockets that’s the add-on sister group.

Anyway! Party Rockets started out as a six-member unit all the way back in 2012, and I’m pleased to see that their group identity has pretty much always been an all-over-the-place rock vibe, with the obligatory J-pop-as-hell vocals coming from these tiny teenaged girls. Who those girls are, however, has largely been in flux, and whether that’s due to agency (yes, they’re an agency creation) or label (major label!) things or just teenagers being teenagers is unknown.

This is surprisingly helpful.

Those major industry connections mean that Party Rockets/GT, despite being a fun project, aren’t quite fully homicidol; their origins go all the way back to Dorothy Little Happy’s parent group, for goodness sake, and ex-members keep finding their way into highly typical idol units. They even did one of those cool temporary group mergers with Otome Shinto (to form Otome Rockets, naturally).

What maybe matters is that, after the usual roster changes over their first few years, Party Rockets did a soft reboot by adding new members in 2015 and rebranding themselves Party Rockets GT. It’s way too soon to tell if they’re going to change much sound-wise or look-wise or anything — and, considering the history, maybe it’s time to just settle on something. Though the latest releases from the next most recent iteration, like “Miraie” and “Kasabuta,” were their way of drifting in a more deliberate kawaiicore direction.

Now, while their sister group Tokyo Rockets is a very clear kawaiicore group, Party Rockets GT, as far as can be told so far, is an absolute in-betweener; in fact, despite probably their most notable songs being deliciously heavy and intense, they edge as close to being typical-idol-and-also-some-rock as they do to idolcore, and that’s fine, but they might not be a group that stays on this site if they ultimately ditch the harder edge.

This is a pretty incomplete profile, as much commentary as substance, but let’s keep our eyes out for good stuff to come; what good they’ve done so far has been very good.

What they sound like

That part of the movie’s soundtrack when the hard-boiled detective and his wacky vaguely-foreign-accented partner go into the seedy strip club to find the Russian (always Russian!) arms/drug dealer, only have it turn out to be as imagined by a Japanese version of Marie Osmond.

You’ll like them if

You like hard rock music, and you also like J-pop, and you wonder why it took so long for somebody to come up with Reese’s Peanut Butter Cups.

Entries on the Ultimate Homicidol Playlist:

From earlier iterations of Party Rockets/GT:


Haruka, leader of Japanese kawaiicore rock idol group Party Rockets GT
Fumika of Japanese kawaiicore rock idol group Party Rockets GT
Nanase of Japanese kawaiicore rock idol group Party Rockets GT
Himeka of Japanese kawaiicore rock idol group Party Rockets GT
Ayumi of Japanese kawaiicore rock idol group Party Rockets GT


“Miraie” (single)
“Setsunasora” (single)
“Let’s Go!!” (single)
“Kasabuta” (single)
Triangle (album)
“Nijiiro Jet” (single)


Osaka Shunkashuto

These girls rock.

I can remember all too well the first time that I heard Osaka Shunkashuto (also spelled “Syunkasyuto,” confusingly), and it’s because I was trying out a new standing desk at work and was incredibly uncomfortable, so I let YouTube choose me a playlist from some of my idolcore favorites, and that song right there rolled in around the middle of the second hour.

One, how had I managed to have not even heard of this group before, what with their well-produced sound and super distinct style and goddamn amazing videos and sweet baby Moses these are serious-ass rock songs why? Two, why is it suddenly quittin’ time and I haven’t gotten anything done since lunch?

Yes, Osaka Shunkashuto is, to put it lightly, a ton of fun. Their music is highly energetic, they dance their asses off and Maina, the lead/pretty much only singer, has a voice made for performing in front a full arena. Just to give you an idea of what they’re bringing, here’s their official video from TIF 2015:


As Tokyo Girls Update put it, they went into TIF as virtual unknowns and walked out as legends.

Pretty much ever since, Osaka Shunkashuto has enjoyed burgeoning popularity, with two mini-albums being released between November and December 2015. It’s probably only a matter of time before they start to invade the Oricon weekly charts, and then hold on to your butts, because these are literally high school girls now, and their future is blazing bright.

And here’s the kicker: They’re only about two years into this after starting as a dance unit that this sort of multimedia mad genius who goes by Soezimax discovered and started to produce. His eye for film and ability to make a tiny budget go a long way is why Osaka Shunkashuto has long-form videos like these: that were really awesome and featured the members fighting zombies and mobsters and even had (gasp!) English-language versions but have since been taken down from YouTube because that’s the kind of fun thing that dies first when you sign your way out of the indies.

You should really like Osaka Shunkashuto if you like things that are good.

What they sound like

These are straightforward rock songs; unlike a number of other rock idol units, there are few J-pop-typical melodic patterns, and they really are rocking out pretty hard. Or, come to think of it, they’re not that dissimilar to a lot of the K-pop stuff that caught on over the last few years — funky, groovy, swinging.

You’ll like them if

I had a really convoluted answer to this question before I decided to simplify it. I mean, do you like real-deal pre-grunge rock bands? Especially if you remember when people used to actually dance to rock music? You’ll like Osaka Shunkashuto.

Entries on the Ultimate Homicidol Playlist:

“C’mon!” is very good, but most of Osaka Shunkashuto’s older Soezimax-era videos have been scrubbed from YouTube, so we’re left with “only” these:


Maina (leader/center)
Maina, the leader from Japanese rock idol group Osaka Shunkashuto
Anna from Japanese rock idol group Osaka Shunkashuto
Mana from Japanese rock idol group Osaka Shunkashuto
Eon from Japanese rock idol group Osaka Shunkashuto
Rina from Japanese rock idol group Osaka Shunkashuto
Yuna from Japanese rock idol group Osaka Shunkashuto
Runa from Japanese rock idol group Osaka Shunkashuto


“Dawn of My Lifetime” (single)
Ms. Chameleon Girl (EP)
“C’mon!” (single)
“Babycrazy” (single)
“Shine” (single)
“Let You Fly!” (single)
“Hachihachi” Live! (EP)
Early Season (album)


Mugen Regina

An RPG soundtrack come to life.

It’s way too easy to repeat that video. Don’t. Megumi will wind up with your soul.

One of the really fun things about this project has been combing through fan sites and forums and finding out about these groups. A significant proportion of them are about as exciting as being hit by a car. And then you get to find groups like Mugen Regina.

That name is about as on-the-nose accurate as it gets: In a fun Japanese/Latin mashup, it literally means “Fantasy Queen,” and, well, just listen to that song.

I’m not going to pretend to know all that much about them right now except to say that I really want to get my hands on their At the Threshold of a Dream album, their first, which came out in October 2015; their previous releases include some EPs. Getting through the jumbled Google translation of their website reveals that they’ve been at it since October 2013, and, like others, they’re deliberately out to challenge and change the notion of what an idol can be.

That’s cool. That’s metal.

I’ll go ahead and alert fellow YouTube hounds that their original catalog is a little bit all over the place. It includes a summer single, for bob’s sake. That’s not bad, just kind of confusing when you consider that the above is the lead track off of their first full album release.

Otherwise, even allowing for the recent roster update, they cut an impressive profile on stage and don’t shy away from either the beauty or the brutality, as befits their style of music.

Where they’re going now, though, remains to be seen. Their center, Haruno Megumi, graduated in May 2016, and her striking stage presence and powerful voice will be hard to replace.

What they sound like

Proggy melodic metal. It’s incorrect to say “no frills” when so much of the sound is about frills, but this isn’t one of those trying-too-hard groups. They do what they do well. But let me just say that my personal hope is that they run with this whole ghostly/ethereal/”from hell” thing and forget about the summer singles.

You’ll like them if

Nightwish is your thing, or you really, really like RPGs.

Entries on the Ultimate Homicidol Playlist:

So far, just “From Hell,” though I get the feeling that more is on the way.


Suzuki Ayame (leader)
Suzuki Ayame, leader of Japanese progressive metal idol group Mugen Regina
Tokitama Ako
Tokita Maako of Japanese progressive metal idol group Mugen Regina
Sonozaki Arisa
Sonozaki Arisa of Japanese progressive metal idol group Mugen Regina

Former Members

Hurano Megumi
Hurano Megumi, center of Japanese progressive metal idol group Mugen Regina


Ai Shika Agenai (EP)
“Mugen” / “Graceful Ferocious World” (single)
5 Seasons (EP)
At the Threshold of a Dream (album? EP?) (This goes by a title similar to “Disqualified Queen” in Japanese; I dunno.)


Haloperi Doll

This is heavy.

What happens when you take idols and add them to a thrash band?

This is what happens.

What you see before you is actually the second iteration of Haloperi Doll — and unlike the typical roster overturn of most idol units, this was a complete revamp: A few months after launching in 2014, the original group was completely disbanded, with a totally new lineup announced after a few more months of stasis.

So this is actually a pretty new unit, not even a year old as of this writing, and a sister group to Mugen Regina (same management and label). I really enjoy the songs done by the original trio, and I like what I’ve heard from the new lineup, so I have to say that the future is bright.

I’m also a metalhead with a definite weakness for thrash, so Haloperi Doll is kind of right in my wheelhouse. They’re also quite nice to interact with on Twitter.

I want to have more to say about Haloperi Doll, but their newness and relative obscurity to Anglophone fans means that I don’t have a whole lot of information, but I’m rooting for them, and let me say that I hope that Babymetal’s influence on Western metal festivals opens the door to more idol metal units, and that the next wave includes Haloperi Doll.

What they sound like

This isn’t dressed up at all. They’re idols singing to (primarily) thrash tracks. That’s a-okay.

You’ll like them if

You wished that Megadeth had a better (female) vocalist; you like Nervosa but prefer clean voices.

Entries on the Ultimate Homicidol Playlist:

“Silent Doll” up at the top, and:

They have some pretty great stuff on Soundcloud, too, but beware that the original trio’s songs’ playlist has been taken down and now you have to hunt a little.


An'z from Japanese thrash metal idol unit Haloperi Doll
An’z also sings for Skull 9 ℃.
La Traviata Tsubuki
La Traviata Tsubaki from Japanese thrash metal idol unit Haloperi Doll
Selenium Cellen
Selenium Cellen from Japanese thrash metal idol unit Haloperi Doll

In case you were wondering, these aren’t their real names.

Former Members

Ringo Kusakabe
Ringo Kusakabe from Japanese thrash metal idol unit Haloperi Doll


HALOPERI Doll ver. 2 (You can call it a single all day long, Haloperi Doll, but I’m on to you.)