"The Flag of Punishment" (VAP; 2003)

Reviewed by Jeff Rogers

Galneryus is an awesome neo-classical/power metal band from Japan. The fact that America embraced power metal and then kicked it to the curb (when a new flavor came out) means nothing to the Land of the Rising Sun. They have taken power metal to a new level and have done it up even better than we did. Enter Galneryus. They started in 2001 and their first disc, "The Flag of Punishment," is a fitting title because these guys absolutely punish their instruments and wave a new flag.

I first learned about these guys when I watched the short-lived anime series titled "RIN." Daughters of Mnemosyne and their double A-side single of the song "Alsatia/Cause Disarray" came blasting through the speakers. Anime always has great metal music (depending on the television series) and this one showcased Galneryus. Sung in English and Japanese which sounds so cool, these guys bring the metal right up into your face.

After listening to this disc you will either want to learn to play guitar or if you already do, you might want to break it in half and toss it in the trashcan. The guitar is neo-classical and split between power metal throughout the album. The drums gallop along and the vocals are power metal all the way. I can hear Dream Theater, Yngwie Malmsteen, Satch and whole bunch of other metal masters pouring out of these guys.

There is a lot of music going on here: keys, synth, strings, guitar, drums, bass and soaring vocals. They even have an instrumental titled "Requiem" and it's definitely one that was made for the repeat button.

Galneryus: Masahiro "Yama-B" Yamaguchi vocals; Syu guitar, backing vocals; Ryosuke "Tsui" Matsui bass, backing vocals; Junichi Satoh drums; Yuhki keyboards, Hammond organ, keytar, backing vocals.

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Rating Guide:

A classic. This record will kick your ass.

Killer. Not a classic but it will rock your world.

So-so. You've heard better.

Pretty bad. Might make a nice coaster.

Self explanatory. Just the sight of the cover makes you wanna hurl.

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Copyright 2013 by R. Scott Bolton. All rights reserved.
Revised: 10 Jul 2022 15:03:28 -0400.