GALNERYUS

biography - 08.23.2011 16:17

GALNERYUS

Galneryus began in 2001, created after guitarist Syu had the idea to create a power metal band, different from the other bands he was part of. Just shortly before the disbandment of his band Valkyr, Syu started the band together with the vocalist YAMA-B, whom he discovered through hearing him sing on the radio. Both men were from the same area and shared the same ideas about starting a power metal band. After gathering some support musicians, they started writing songs, practising, holding concerts and contributing some songs to omnibus albums, which all lead to the release of their first demo CD-R United Flag in 2003. Like many fledgling artists, only a limited number of copies were released. In that same year they released another demo, Rebel Flag.

In the early years, the two had been working with support musicians, but in 2003, the band's line-up started to take on a definite shape with Tsui on bass, YUHKI on keyboards and former CONCERTO MOON member, Junichi Sato, on drums.

It was the passion of the band members that helped them get a record deal: the record label VAP, which is also the label of Syu's band ANIMETAL, proposed a deal which resulted in the release of their first album, Flag of Punishment, in October 2003. The artwork was done by the artist Yoshitaka Amano, who is known for his artwork for Final Fantasy and Vampire Hunter D, amongst others. Yoshitaka Amano has continued to design their album covers.

The record, containing power metal songs that may remind one of Yngwie J. Malmsteen, the guitarist whom Syu has often acknowledged to be inspired by, was received very well by the fans and press alike. From that moment on, the band has been regarded as a credible and innovative part of the Japanese music scene.

But their second album, Advance To The Fall, which was released in March 2005, revealed the band to the rest of the world, especially thanks to the hit Silent Revelation. The very powerful album became a true success amongst metal fans as well.

In the next year, after a series of concerts, which in Syu's case was with both ANIMETAL and Galneryus, the band retreated to the studio once again to record their third album. The result was the album Beyond The End of Despair, released in July of 2006. The album was mixed and mastered by the Swedish team SHEP, bringing their sound even closer to European metal bands. A few months later, the band released their first live DVD, Live for Rebirth, which shows the band in fine form during their concerts of their Die for Rebirth tour. In September, GALNERYUS participated in the Pure Rock Japan 2006 event, which is one of the few Japanese metal events. At the end of that year, they were invited to participate in a tribute album to the movie "Death Note."

At the end of 2006, bassist tsui left the band after he had been with them for nearly three years. Only a few months later, a new bassist completed the line-up again. Yu-to would be the band’s bassist for the next two years, while he was also active in the band GRAVE SEED, later known as the visual kei band DELUHI where he used the name Leda. With a new bassist on board, the band was set to release the single Everlasting and the album One For All - All For One in summer. The following year brought their second live DVD Live For All -Live For One with footage of one of the concerts to promote the release of the album.

The band continued to frequently bring out some new material. The year 2008 brought more: the single Alsatia/Cause Disarray was used as a tie-in with the anime “Mnemosyne” and gave the band the opportunity to introduce themselves to a broader audience. September brought the release of their fifth album, REINCARNATION. This time, they had worked together with the American recording engineer Ted Jensen who mastered the album and secured the band an American metal sound to their songs.

Whilst the band seemed to be fairing quite well with frequent new releases and performances, a less fortunate message was posted on the band’s official homepage. After their BACK TO THE FLAG tour, vocalist YAMA-B would leave the band in December. The band and YAMA-B’s aims appeared to be different and so the decision was made for them to go separate ways.

Without a vocalist, the band kept a low-profile for a while, but did release two best-of albums to keep the attention of their fans and started the search for a new vocalist. In summer 2009, they performed with Masatoshi "SHO" Ono as a guest vocalist. In September, it was announced that Masatoshi "SHO" Ono would become the official new singer of the band. It wasn’t the only change in the line-up, as Yu-to had also left and Taka took up the bassist role. The first concert with the new line-up was in October at the event LOUD PARK 09, where they shared the stage with well-known international metal acts such as Hatebreed, Anthrax, Children of Bodom and Arch Enemy.

Their first release was appropriately titled RESURRECTION and came out in June 2010. The album entered the top 50 of the Oricon Charts, which is their best rating so far and can be considered impressive as metal music rarely appears on Japan's charts. Since then, the band has been stylizing their name with capitals, changing their spelling from Galneryus to GALNERYUS. To promote the album, the band toured the country once again, ending with a final live in the Shibuya AX on September 12. This live was recorded and in December released on DVD under the title Live In The Moment Of The Resurrection. The release of a second album with the current line-up has already been planned; PHOENIX RISING will come out on October 5th.

Over the years, GALNERYUS has proved to be a strong spirited band that has the ability to overcome their problems and return stronger than before. Although the band has no new shows or releases planned at the moment, we can be sure that GALNERYUS in their new form will continue to rock Japan’s metal scene.
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