O!susume – Zwei

Broadcast 33: Zwei

I’m back this month to recommend another artist that was again (like last month’s Nakashima Mika) involved in my queer awakening: the female rock band bass/vocal duo called Zwei. There was a period of time where I was finding a lot of the music on YouTube, including the German band called Tokio Hotel, so it was only fitting that I ended up finding a Japanese band with the German word for “two” as their name.


Years Active: 2003-present

Members: Megu (bass), Ayumu (vocals)


Who is Zwei?

Ayumu (vocals) and Megu (bass) met in 2002 and felt a musical connection which led to the formation of Zwei in 2003. Their name, Zwei, is German for “two” and symbolizes the connection of their different styles of music, which they describe as having an aggressive yet natural emotional sound to it. They are a rock/pop band with Ayumu’s vocals and presence reminding me of the classic J-rock group X JAPAN (which she fittingly covered a few songs over on their YouTube channel), and Megu’s bass jamming was most likely the first time that I really paid attention to bass, and fell in love with its sound. Their bass/vocal duo is really fresh and unique, and they also add in strings and electronic elements that really create a full, almost cinematic experience at times.


Watashigai no Uta

ワタシ飼いの唄 (“Watashigai no Uta” – “My Pet’s Song”) was one of my go-to songs, released in 2004 on the album Pretty Queen under the VAP label. The music video is a little bit hard to find, probably because Zwei switched labels in 2007 to Universal, and then again in 2010 to 5pb where they gained some more popularity after releasing music for some anime and video games (including the ending theme for Steins;Gate 0 which is how I realized they were still making music).

The music video for “Watashigai no Uta” features an overall black and white aesthetic with images of a crow and glitchy flashing lights, and both members feature pixie fringe-type hairstyles and chunky metal jewelry which really drew me in at a time where I really enamored with avant garde and visual kei styles. Ayumu’s vocals perfectly sync with her rock vibe and I love when she belts out with full emotion and creates a beautiful overall range with the softer moments in the song.



“Dragon” was released under Zwei’s second album Z (Zeta) released in 2005, and was probably their most popular single at the time. This song is a great example of their use of electronic sounds and the music video leans into the overarching theatrical experience. I love Ayumu’s open vocals in the beginning, supported by the string opening, creating a really intense and catchy tune that builds at the end. The instrumentals and electronic sounds really remind me of Ayumi Hamasaki’s music releasing around the same time, so really the vibe overall gives me a great sense of nostalgia. I would really love a remastered version of this song!



“Hikari” is my favorite song of the bunch, and I remember thinking that the music video was also cool with the slow motion reverse walking and light effects, with Megu in her super cool jumpsuit and Ayumu in her rockstar sunglasses. The song features a great string opening and overall I just like the tempo and impact of the song which feels measured yet introspective. “Hikari” which means “light” really comes through in the video and the lyrics, as I always feel the need to belt out “I can feel the light” with Ayumu’s singing. The original version of this video was on YouTube for over 10 years and I would come back to it and see my original comments during my queer awakening.

Overall, I have really fond memories of listening to this band, watching these music videos and sharing my love of the band with my best friend who started a fan group on Crunchyroll for the band. Zwei has started a YouTube channel within the last 3 years where they have been uploading some new videos, so I’m excited to see what they will be releasing and if they will ever remaster or reupload some of their old content as well.







This Broadcast was written by Erin; you can find them on instagram at @thekniterin.