While we’re trailing the globe

…here’s something I found earlier!

The band in question – Japanese heavy metallers Onmyo-Za.

Fronted by the lovely “Kuroneko” (with support from bassist “Matatabi”), the band dress in traditional-inspired costumes and play heavy metal which follows the influence of NWOBHM icons Judas Priest and Iron Maiden.

Here’s one of their songs, Nemuri

Now, you all know of Iron Maiden’s ‘The Trooper’?

Here’s just a refresher

Now, with their frontwoman taking the lead; here’s ‘The Trooper’ – as covered by Onmyo-Za!

Though since this blog’s indebted to Judas Priest, here’s the band’s take on ‘Beyond The Realms of Death’ with “Matatabi” on singing duties



  1. I think the Priest cover is clearly the pick of the three tracks here. Nicely done.

  2. She can really sing! For purposefully unoriginal music, this is quite listenable. It follows in Japan’s visual kei tradition; the visuals are more compelling than the sounds.

    • To my knowledge, Onmyo-Za are also influenced by Japanese pop music; which could partly explain why visuals must go hand in hand with the sound as compared to various other bands whose music stands stronger than their visuals.

      Though I’ve always considered visual kei itself to be much more flamboyant in style! Especially as the term always brings to mind how Dir En Grey, the GazettE and a few others used to dress before toning things down.

  3. Nice article, I’m so glad that you made a point of Onmyo-za’s love of NWOBHM instead of just people thinking wrongly that they are visual kei. I once interviewed Matatabi once and loved that he said quote – “I will worship Judas Priest until the day I die” so that JP cover of “Beyond the Realms” is really important to him.

    • As I’ve mentioned above, I consider visual kei and just dressing up in traditional inspired costumes (with not even that much make up) to be different.

      I hope that Matatabi catches them when they hopefully come back to Japan – JP are certainly on MY bucket list!

      • Oh yes indeed, even in Japan bands that are not totally mainstream are usually seen as some kind of “kei”/themed/weird, as Matatabi says “We are Yokai Heavy Metal Band – Onmyo-za” at the beginning of each concert. That is their angle and it’s certainly different. Admirable too that they have stuck exactly to their style and concept since their inception in 1999. Much kudos to you for having a open minded opinion on visual kei too!

        Last time JP visited Japan Matatabi got a back stage pass and gushed about how excited he was on his blog. With his obsession I’d be very surprised if he doesn’t make the show when they hit Japan next.

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