Many great things come from Japan from food to cars to electronics and a great diversity of music. Magistina Saga is one of those great gems found in the Japanese music scene. Having been active since 2008 with a few EPs and singles, this is the group’s first full length album and it is a great example of diversity in sound. Most are familiar with the J-Pop and J-Rock sound but the mix of that influence with great symphonics that touch on the industrial side at times, distorted guitars and pounding drums equals great symphonic gothic metal.
Now with the great music comes the hard part of understanding the songs unless you speak Japanese but don’t let this stop you from a great well rounded release. Iori’s voice is very pleasing and sounds similar to that of Within Temptation or Flowing Tears (well obviously in Japanese) but with a touch of J-Rock in their sound. The guitars and drums keep up the metal sound which keep the album from genre hopping and the symphonic melodies are very well written and placed throughout each track. Tracks like “パラレル戯曲トラップ” and “Unplaced” have a very upbeat sound with a mixture of industrial and gothic metal orchestrations thrown into metal riffs and entrancing singing and even a few moments of death growls placed at parts. The track “Persona” features a great guitar solo and sombre piano work that stand out among the other songs.
Now this may not be everyone’s cup of tea but a really well written album that is great for those who want something different and feel they want to be adventurous. The tempo changes, unique melodies and well placed vocals that use the “Beauty and the Beast” technique work and flow perfectly. This is definitely for fans of Flowing Tears, Lacuna Coil and well…obviously Visual Kei, Japanese rock and pop.
5.0 / 5.0