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Galneryus - Vetelgyus

by Matt Coe at 17 October 2014, 10:16 PM

Japan has had a long standing appreciation for the Neo-Classical oriented Power Metal realm – there are numerous Guitar-oriented magazines that worship at the altar of brilliant, technically solid players. Before me I have the latest album from Osaka’s GALNERYUS, a quintet who have been active since 2001 and issue their 11th studio record with “Vetelgyus”.

The first thing to adjust my ears to is the natural use of the Japanese language from vocalist Masatoshi Ono – as the English song titles only tend to come into play during the choruses. He possesses a very high register and natural skills to soar- a la Michael Kiske and Timo Kotipelto. Musically the band also have a lot of STRATOVARIUS connections in terms of their power chord choices and natural Neo-Classical proclivities- especially in terms of the keyboard/ guitars instrumental runs that often become competitive.

There are a lot of older qualities to songs such as “Enemy to Injustice” and “Endless Story” that I haven’t heard in Power Metal since the late 1990’s – and I applaud Yuhki for the use of, not just keyboards, but real Hammond Organ to give certain passages that DEEP PURPLE / RAINBOW feel. Where most of these bands struggle to keep my interest is their need to max out the CD format time-wise: do we really need another 70 minute plus record? As great as the 8 minute plus title track instrumental can be, fatigue sets in that makes second half songs such as “I Wish” and the closing instrumental ballad “The Voyage” rare aired in my listening devices.

The good to great ratio outweighs any of these minor problems – so those of you who miss the late 90’s Euro Power Metal explosion, the one where double bass, happy melodies, and spirited guitar/ keyboard runs became the norm, GALNERYUS is a band that fills that niche nicely. You have to admire their productivity – so let’s improve their stature in the scene.

4 Star Rating

1. Redstar Rising
2. Endless Story
3. There’s No Escape
4. Ultimatum
5. Enemy to Injustice
6. The Judgement Day
7. Vetelgyus
8. Attitude to Life
9. Secret Love
10. The Guide
11. I Wish
12. The Voyage
Masatoshi Ono - Vocals
Syu - Guitars
Yuhki - Keyboards
Taka - Bass
Junichi Sato - Drums
Record Label: VAP


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