Reviewed by Paul S Ganney
Amazingly, this is the 15th album from the Japanese Christian metal band. Some very impressive riffing opens the album and we're off - pounding drums, pulsating bass, roomsfull of reverb, long held vocals at the limit of human hearing (check out "Repent" for a great example of the latter - probably the best vocal performance on the album). It's germanic metal in a Helloween/Stryper/Axxis style, not quite fast enough to hit Dragonforce comparisons, except on the odd solo, but fast enough to keep the excitement level up. I was especially drawn to the rhythm/riffing guitar work which is exemplary throughout, especially on "Jee-You", "Saints Seeking Salvation" and "The Wave" (which is more Gary Moore/Def Leppard than the previous reference points). It's fast, furious, throttling forwards and back as the song demands, clear even at top speed and has more energy than it has a right to, even veering dangerously close to punk on "Don't Stop Walking" (with a lovely chanted closing line) and "New Jerusalem" whose main riff had a hint of "London Calling" about it. Some prog bands release instrumental versions of their albums as bonuses - here's one metal band that could do so. Even on the gentler "Peace" it sounds like they've fed the acoustic guitars through a Marshall first. It works, giving the solo a chance to shine, without fighting the riffs going on behind it. Overall very accomplished and makes me want to hear more.
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