It was so awesome to have Ladybeard back in Hong Kong. Thanks so much to Ladybeard, the wonderful Ladybeard management team, the staff & soundguys at Focal Fair. Thanks to The Underground team on site and biggest thanks to the audience who turned up!
love Chris B xx
今次真係很開心請到Ladybeard (鬍鬚女) 再次返到黎香港！ 係呢度好感激Ladybeard (鬍鬚女)，超棒的Ladybeard (鬍鬚女) 管理團隊，Focal Fair的工作同音響人員。 仲有係現場的The Underground 團隊，同埋各位觀眾的大力支持!
love Chris B xx
1. Valentine Kiss (バレンタイン・キッス）
2. Onegai – Shinderera (お願い！シンデレラ)
3. Love Trap (愛情陷阱)
4. Tsukema Tsukema (つけまつける)
5. Yu Ling Dai Biau Wo De Xin (月亮代表我的心)
7. Den Den Passion (でんでんぱっしょん)
8. First Love
The expression “WTF” might have been invented for this act.
There’s a long history of guys dressing up as girls to comic (and lucrative) effect, and Ladybeard has just added a few bells and whistles. Well specifically, a five-year-old girl’s personality and dress sense, spliced with a metal singer. Oh, and a beard.
So what can you expect at a Ladybeard show? OK, this is how it goes down. After the anticipation builds for some time, finally the man (he’s definitely a man) himself appears, in his trademark pigtails, polka-dot miniskirts and knee-high socks, to a huge reception. He’s a big, hairy, muscular guy (and former professional wrestler), so if this is your first time, expect a few minutes getting your head around this visual spectacle. It’s not an easy thing to take in, like the time as a kid you walked in on your mum and dad doing it and only realised what was actually happening years later. Unless you were like grown up at the time? Anyway that’s weird, and believe me there’s enough weirdness without going that direction.
After greeting everyone in pretty good Cantonese and getting a lot of laughs and cheers for his efforts he launches into his first song. Except it’s all sweet and gentle, and … nice, luring you into a false sense of security. For a minute or so. Then suddenly it turns into metal version of the song, with the prerecorded soundtrack exploding into squealing guitars and double kick bass pedals, with LB screaming and growling and headbanging like a proper death metaller (except for the flying pigtails). Until it all finally stops, and he flashes the audience that sweet, million dollar smile, as if to say, “who, me?”
This is ‘kawaiicore’, a bizarre, only-in-Japan cute/hardcore crossover, and LB has got it down pretty good.
And then it all starts again.
And that’s pretty much it. Except for the wrestling break in the middle, which saw a 300lb baddie rushing into the room to take LB on, to pantomime-style boos from everyone. They get pretty physical for a while, until defeated, the usurper slinks out, never to return (well until the next day’s show, but apparently he got canned).
There’s no question LB is multi-talented – you try dancing and flirting with your audience in several languages while singing crazy, alternately nursery rhyme and metal style songs and throwing yourself around the room. No wonder he’s breathing heavily and hostess with the mostess Chris B screams when he wraps her in a sweaty embrace. Comes with the cross-dressing territory I’m afraid Chris!
After spending a few years in Hong Kong, Ladybeard relocated to Japan, where his side project Ladybaby, a pop metal band which includes two teen girls seems to be going down pretty well, at least judging by the 14.5 million YouTube views their single “Nippon Manju” received.
So this was something of a triumphant homecoming, made all the more special because it was supposed to be a few months back but got cancelled because he came down sick (probably with measles or mumps or some other kiddy illness). So there was a lot of love in the room for the big fella, which he gratefully lapped up, coming back for an encore during which he actually sang pretty sweetly, until – yes, you guessed it. Urrrrgggghhhhhh!
Another high point was his version of Justin Bieber’s My First Love, during which he threw a huge beach ball with a photo of his pigtails and face morphed with Justin Bieber and the words “Lady Bieber” stuck on it (I’m sure Justin would be thrilled if he knew!).
And while only his mother may still call him Richard, this was a fun and VERY different show from a seriously alternative performer.
– Dan Creffield
4月16日的晚上，The Underground為香港帶回了一位國際級藝人-Ladybeard。發跡香港的他，近年在日本發展，憑著女裝打扮摔角手形象成功殺出重圍，在YouTube 發佈一年左右的<Nippon Manju> MV已有一千四百萬多點擊率。到處登台的他，今天終於回歸香港，在4月16和17日演出兩場。
演唱會預定在8時開始，但6時半已有觀眾在門口守候。可見香港觀眾對Ladybeard的期待。之後觀眾陸續進場，八時半左右Ladybeard在歡呼中進場。立即唱出第一首歌<Valentine Kiss>，緊湊的重金屬音樂中咆哮，起勢搖頭舞動著頭上的孖辮。完結後即用廣東話少女啌和觀眾說：我好掛住你地呀！全場立即被Ladybeard迷得一陣。Ladybeard的表演就像看著雌雄同體表演，上一分鐘為霸氣金屬狂人，下一分鐘則為可愛賣萌少女，甚至可以在兩三秒的music break中突然啫嘴賣萌。實在難以觸摸令全場抱腹大笑。Ladybeard唱<愛情陷阱>前特別講到自己已經有一段時間沒有表演過廣東歌，叫大家一同合唱，將氣氛推到一個小高潮。
突然一個碩壯肥大，面塗黑的惡人一手推倒台上的Ladybeard，又抓著他的頭髮暴打，把台下觀眾嚇得半死。但其實是特別安排的摔角表演，畢竟Ladybeard除了是重金屬歌手外，還是一個摔角手。Ladybeard初初就是他當摔角手的名號。台下觀眾都很快了解到台上的事情，對著黑面摔角手大喊Boo!Boo! 又大叫Ladybeard起身。未看過美式摔角WWE等節目的我亦覺得過引。黑面摔角手為香港專業摔角手King Michael。Ladybeard不負眾望起身還擊，還將戰事帶到台下。從左打到右，所有觀眾都可以超近距離欣賞他們的搏擊。最後在門口位置附近Ladybeard將King Michael轟出門外，贏得全場掌聲。
小休幾分鐘後，Ladybeard就出來挑戰自己極限，翻唱日本六人女子組合 でんぱ組.inc（電波組.inc)的<Den Den Passion>。一人表演六人的份，歌曲又要突然快唱又要邊舞絲帶。即使跳至全身汗流浹背，表演和歌聲也不走樣。令人驚嘆他就是一個為表演已生的男人，Ladybeard在開始表演前曾跟The Underground的組員說過：Best Service是最重要的！這表演就是這句說話的體現。
最後是全晚唯一慢版的歌曲，宇多田光的<First Love>, 但原來下半段都是重金屬化的編曲，讓人哭笑不得。最後，Ladybeard再次用少女啌賣萌地說很掛念在香港的日子，就在掌聲中離場。
– Dicky Kwong
Photos by Leon Clark.
Poster by Angus Leung & Ryan Chiu.
海報由Angus Leung &