Dragon Guardian, a symphonic power metal band, hails from Tokyo, Japan. Details about the band are sketchy. Promotional material from the label is slight and unhelpful; the band's website is in Japanese without an English option. Here's what I could piece together about Dragon Warrior and Destiny of the Sacred Kingdom.
The band is lead by founder Arthur Brave (obviously not his given Japanese name) who is the main lyricist, composer, arranger, programmer, and guitarist. The other principals have mythical names as well: Leo Figaro is the lead vocalist and Johann Sebastian Bach (you read that right), another guitarist. Dragon Guardian is quite prolific as they've had 10 full length albums and three EPs since 2007; that's 13 recordings in five years! Cripes!
It appears that this recording, Destiny of the Sacred Kingdom, is the first a six part series called Tales of Fire and Ice, begun in 2011. Now signed to Germany's IceWarrior Records, Dragon Guardian is being unleashed upon the European theater. When they get to North America is anyone's guess.
The European metal scene is fertile ground for Dragon Guardian. Destiny of the Sacred Kingdom is pure European symphonic power metal: think Stratovarius and Blind Guardian colliding with Dragonforce, and you'll get their sound. Basically, the album starts power metal fast with epic keyboards, guitar arrangements, and blasting drums for a bombastic atmosphere. There's little variation and the tempo rarely slows. Both Brave and Bach can fly on the fret board, so if you like lots of guitar and guitar solos, this album will work for you. The challenging part is Figaro's vocal arrangements: he can sing, but you basically can't understand him. Frankly, it's rather standard fare for the genre, but it is impressive in it's exaggeration.
If Destiny of the Sacred Kingdom is the first of six parts, I suspect IceWarrior Records will get around to releasing the other five. After listening to this album, we already know what to expect. Get Destiny of the Sacred Kingdom if you dig over-the-top, bombastic and epic, symphonic power metal.
If Destiny of the Sacred Kingdom is the first of six parts to come of The Tales of Fire and Ice. After listening to this album, we already know what to expect. Get Destiny of the Sacred Kingdom if you dig over-the-top, bombastic and epic, symphonic power metal.