Fireworks

Dragon Guardian - Destiny Of The Sacred Kingdom' http://ns2.rocktopiarecords.com/media/reviews/photos/thumbnail/200x200s/23/db/9d/Dragon-Guardian-Destiny-Of-The-Sacred-Kingdom-27-1382643413.jpg Hot

Added by Central Electronic Brain     October 24, 2013    
 
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Fans of high intensity Symphonic/Speed/Power Metal will lap this up.

With no bio or press release what I can make out is that Dragon Guardian is a Japanese Symphonic Neo-classical Metal band with a Neo-classical guitarist in one Arthur Brave (apparently his real name despite his Japanese origin) who plays all the guitars and occasional bass along with being the lyricist, composer, arranger and programmer, plus another Japanese guy, Ryou Moriguchi going under the name Leo Figaro, sings all the vocals in a very typical Japanese accent with interesting pronunciation and tone.

Dragon Guardian is one of eight bands Ryou is involved in alongside his solo project where he also plays bass, piano and does the programming, so clearly a man with a lot of fingers in a lot of pies – good grief! Where does he find the time? Apparently there have been a number of musicians coming and going from Dragon Guardian and I believe this is Ryou's first vocal performance with this project, and also that this album is a re-record of the first Dragon Guardian album in 2007 that was entirely in Japanese, with Ryou translating the lyrics and titles into English for this version. Also IceWarrior Records have licensed this originally self-released album and re-released it no doubt to a wider audience.

Fireworks - The Ultimate Magazine For Melodic Rock Music

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There are a number of gripes though and one of them is because of the intensity of the Symphonic and Neo-classical style virtually all of the songs tend to merge into one another, and unfortunately Arthur Brave has got carried away with the drum programming and gone totally over the top with what seems like a million beats a minute that no human drummer could possibly replicate live – only Ashura from Z-Machines would be able to do this, or maybe that's the plan?

That aside, Arthur Brave appears to be going under the name 'Johann Sebastian Bach' from Neo-progressive Symphonic Japanese band Thousand Leaves, so I'm not entirely sure if he is the one and the same guy. Either way the guitar playing is on Malmsteen levels, only played somewhat faster on many tracks and Ryou Moriguchi, or Leo Figaro as he is known on this record, has a very adept high range to suit this material.

Anyway, fans of high intensity Symphonic/Speed/Power Metal will lap this up!

Carl Buxton

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